Religion, deities, spirituality

The main religion in India is Hinduism. But many people preach Islam, Christianity, Buddhism and there are also the largest number of lesser-known religions.

Among the deities of India, Ganesh is very revered: he is a deity in the form of an elephant, sitting or standing, with 2, 4 human hands or more and his 2 legs. It is believed that he blesses initiative, brings good luck and eliminates obstacles. He is decorated, rituals are performed around him. Just at the entrance to the ashram is the main mandir (altar) of Ganesh . And on the territory there are several, apparently not the main ones. And indeed anywhere, even near the pool, you can see the altar of Ganesh .

Near the stadium on the mountainside, there are several statues of several meters representing Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha, and above them stands the god of the people of the Hanuman monkeys.

Before dawn, an omkar is held in the mandir – pronouncing the sacred sound “Om” 21 times – and the morning prayer is performed. As the mandir is small, to get to omkar , you have to go there two hours before the beginning of it, that is to say at 3:30 am (some wanted to come early, but they specially wrote an ad to observe decency). After omkar , the people who visited the mandir and the one who was walking in the street at that time make a detour with bhajans around the residence of Baba and Darshan Hall.

I made a detour once, but I never touched an omkar , although I once arrived at its beginning: the sevadalki shook their head and said they should come at 3:30. decided that I was not capable of such a feat, even though I really wanted to be one of those who attended the omkar .

Each darshan ends with a certain rite called arati . Under the singing of a certain bhajan and the sound of a great drum, a special person (or several persons) in circular movements offers a fiery lamp to Baba, so that this lamp can acquire the divine spiritual power. Then this man turns on the light of all the people gathered and they symbolically wash their heads with this fire and their palms. It is believed that people are filled with energy from this fire, accept the blessing of God.

Similar ceremonies are also organized in the canteens before each meal: there is a picture of Sai Baba, sculptures of Christ, Buddha and many deities. Start by reading the mantra, then commit arati .

In the book I bought at Sai Baba, I learned that worshiping deities was considered a necessary experience and had a beneficial effect on people. Whatever the form of this worship, whatever the form and name of the deity, the image is very important for human perception.

Since they do not have the concept of sin, the god who punishes it, we only feel acceptance and love. And without fear, the soul quickly finds the way of everything, of God.

Each person has the opportunity to worship Baba after the end of darshan. Sevadaly creates a line of people ready to do it and gradually, a person approaches the crypt with the ashes of Baba, where she kneels and lowers her head. At this time, unusual feelings may come or something like insight or insight will occur.

Not far from the ashram, if you climb a mountain, there is a tree for meditation. Honestly, I did not like it: the sounds of passing vehicles, people coming and going, the sight of those same people and even their snacks! Much more pleasant to meditate alone in the room …

Another tree – the tree of desires – is not far from the ashram: a long steep staircase leads from the Chitravati road , dotted with shops. The tree is already very old and worn. It is surrounded by a grid on which people want to attach pieces of paper with written wishes. According to legend, Sai Baba, when he was little, produced different fruits for his comrades: bananas, oranges, etc. at their request.

And if you climb even higher, then a magnificent view of the city, the river, the stadium.

On August 5, Muslim Ramadan was celebrated: they decorated Darshan Hall in the appropriate style, and delegations from the Middle East arrived: Iran, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates. There was a concert organized by the German delegation, which I liked very much. Very good music sounded (mostly famous European music with converted words). Interestingly, European music is better than Indian. And the Indians right now are bored. But when the Indians start, they come alive straight away, immediately start cheering and singing.

During all the holidays, all those who were on darshan distributed prasad – the consecrated food. Basically, these are specially prepared candies, but they have given twice and fruit bars in factory packs. The first time I saw thick wax paper containing an undefined object, I did not know about prasadam and, perplexed, I asked Lena what to do with it. Insidious, Lena, mocking my naivety internally, offered to sniff her! Thank God, I was saved by others who immediately began to bite prasadam .

And several times in the form of prasad , a picture of Baba and leaflets containing statements of Baba were distributed. I wanted to translate them and try to understand the meaning of what was being said.

The same statements were printed on each check issued when shopping at the mall. I have never met the same statement, always different! When I saw these statements on the checks, I started to collect them and translate them. In addition, they have generally helped to understand a current situation, to understand its meaning or to make a decision. This always happens when you ask a question internally, and the answer can come in the form of such a statement on the store receipt!

From the end of the bhajans , the recordings were made with songs performed by Sai Baba himself. So interesting, I would never have guessed he had such a voice.

It’s been two or three weeks since I visited satsang recently. It sounds like a conversation about self-knowledge with a dedicated person. We had a 35 year old man named Shanti , half German, half Indian living in Germany. The satsangs were one of the most wonderful things that happened to me at the ashram! Although sometimes it was impossible to translate my questions correctly to Shanti , sometimes I did not agree with her interpretation of some questions, sometimes the questions did not work as deeply as I would like, but overall, was a wonderful time to dive into the miracle of knowledge and the opportunity to discover directions where you have to look internally and move!

We met for an hour, first in a rented room outside, then outside in a kindergarten of all the religions of the same ashram. The reaction of the passers-by was obvious and predictable: strangers passed without stopping or sat down to listen to us trying not to interfere in the process, and the Indians stopped by abandoning all their belongings, could we say, looking at us (no I know, listened, did you understand?). Many could immediately begin to exchange impressions, laugh, point, change places of movement and observation, then move closer and then away, disturbing at the same time. How exactly reveals the behavior style of people and the nature of the nation!

Twice all those who visited the satsangs also gathered to sing bhajans and other songs, first in the apartment of a Russian woman and the second time in a Russian restaurant.

The Russian woman’s apartment was a two-storey floor of a high-rise building. The rooms are not very big, but all together are superb. There are two large balconies (one on the terrace), three toilets and four to five rooms.

I was in a Russian restaurant for the first time because it had not worked before. Not very big, but not cramped, bright, comfortable, inviting, I liked it. We had different teas, pancakes (ours, Russian!), Not to mention the usual Russian food: mashed potatoes, chops, borsch, etc. Here it appears where to go is !!!

What’s interesting is that I learned satsang quite by accident: I saw the ad for the first time, but I did not even understand what was happening and where it all went, and then a woman Russian explained to me, with whom we had spoken in a restaurant.

In general, there is no information delivery system, there is absolutely no notification. If you hear something somewhere, then consider yourself lucky. We can say that everything that happens to you happens by the will of God, if you are destined to go somewhere before, then you will go, otherwise the information about it just does not reach you.

Of all rules, and from there too, there were exceptions. So, once a rumor circulated, the vibhuti materialized in an Indian apartment. This is the name of the sacred ash that Baba used to materialize with his own hands (in real life, vibhuti is obtained by burning five gifts of a cow (milk, butter, yoghurt, urine and manure) during a ritual fire or by collecting ashes in places of cremation). Now, ashram and Puttaparthi ashes can appear independently, probably also under the influence of Baba. It is said that the whole room of the Indians was covered with ashes. We received this information, but when we entered this apartment, there was no one and it was closed. And in general, at the ashram, I never saw with my own eyes a vibhuti materialized (the usual vibhuti was always in the dining room). But when she started unpacking at home in Russia, she found a small envelope on a piece of paper with the word ” sai ram” written precisely on the whole area. When I opened it, Vibhuti was there, but who packed it and how it turned out in my business, it remains a mystery … Maybe it is a compensation for the Vibhuti that we do not have not seen in the apartment of the Indians and there is no exception to the rule that I deduced ???

Another very interesting is the awareness of time. Sometimes you remember certain events, and it seems like a long time ago, and it turns out it was just yesterday. And sometimes you watch your watch, you go there and you do one or more things, you come, and the clock is the same minute or the next.

And in general, it’s like being here for three days. All outwardly younger, but within the recruited wisdom!

The process of rejuvenation for many begins immediately after arrival at the ashram. Almost all people with any disease: when a person has its “weak” place, it is torn there. Here this whole process is called “cleaning”. That is to say, in a holy place, all the garbage of a person immediately begins to leave, so that he can continue to feed on all that is good and positive.

I also want to talk about one of our 25-year-old compatriots, I can not remember her name, Olga. I was puzzled by his appearance at the Ashram: why are such crude and unprepared people entering the ashram? Can we call this training? Or is it something completely different?

So, I met her in strange circumstances. Ura at six o’clock, when I left the room in the corridor, to greet the day and the sun, she sat on a mattress thrown down the hall, her nose sunk in her lap. She had a purse. It should be noted that with the bags here, no one is going so pointless. Everything you need fits in a small size or shoulder, such as envelopes or pockets. On entering the city, they sometimes take with them bags of Indian type: for example, a simple cloth with a long strap.

To my “Sai ram!”, She replied in Russian “Hello!” (Information that the person is Russian, comes from above!). It turned out that a few days ago she and her friend entered the room next to me and last night she could not open the lock. Apparently, her friend had replaced the lock! But last night’s girlfriend never appeared! Olya spent the night in a multi-room on the second floor and, early in the morning, I was at the post outside the door, waiting for my friend, where I caught her. Olya was clearly prostrate, all in herself and in her thoughts.

I responded to her whole monologue that I did not observe anyone in the next room and, most likely, they did not enter the fourth floor, but in the third, and she had to go there for check. So, it turned out. Poor Olya spent the entire evening from the fourth to the first round trip looking for a friend or a key, and never thought of entering the third! And this despite the fact that it was already the third day of his stay at the Ashram and in this North!

The second time, my clash with her was also a match for the first time. I went to the evening darshan and saw Olya walk towards me with a pillow for meditation, that is, in the opposite direction to where Darshan Hall was. I was a little surprised and asked her why she was not looking for darshan, but already back? Embarrassed, she said that she had lost her mind and could not find where Darshan Hall was and that she had been there several times. And she did not reach it a few meters away, a kind of force spread it and brought it back! And this despite the fact that this is not her first trip to darshan and she’s already gone! I brought her to Darshan-Hall, joking that I figure in her life in time to save her. To which Olga, with dignity, replied that she herself would have found Darshan Hall, after having made a few more laps!

Looking at her, it was clear that she lives in her own world, where someone intrigues her in the form of changed castles, disappearing corridors, that she is completely immersed in her thoughts and that she does not see, hear, feel the world around her. How was I familiar? I recognized myself.

The holidays in Oli lasted about two weeks, she came here for ten days. And she was very proud to be an indispensable worker at work, they can not do without her, she even went on vacation while she was in town, going to work every day. And she does not receive leave for more than two weeks, because at work, she has to solve many necessary and necessary things. And to whom, if not to her to solve them? She did not see the fact that she was simply being used, playing on her excessive conscience, on the fear of being wrong and being irresponsible, unorganized! These people are very easy to manipulate and blame: they will accept it and try to remedy the situation. She also wanted all Indians to speak English properly and need to learn or retrain !!! She talked a lot, as she should …

It was funny for me. The man spoke as though he were delirious about his ideas that did not fit with reality. Nevertheless, she believed that this was exactly what the reality should look like. And angry, and did not understand when she objected.

And the weirdest thing was that she was bored, uninteresting here at the ashram, she did not know what she was doing here. She did not read esoteric books, did not meditate, did not particularly believe in spirituality, nor in God. When she went on vacation, she thought about going to the beach in Goa and suddenly, as if someone had called her, she was here in the ashram with a handbag and an artificial smile. I guess who called her, but why ?! To show that there is another life full of joy and happiness, rather than the desire for recognition and the fear of spoiling everything and doing something wrong? So she will not see it, because her life is always good for her. That’s when she stops arranging it, then she starts searching, but she’s already going to look for herself. Perhaps then she will remember the ashram?

She disappeared very quickly, in my opinion, before the end of her days at the ashram. Maybe she always went to Goa, as she has repeated many times?

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