Sunday, January 24, 2010

Chapter 12: Principal Usha ji Comes into Contact with Saints

After education, acquiring knowledge, getting fame, contacting the best of people and becoming powerful in the mundane world, life is futile unless steeped in the love of Radha-Krishna.


Eternal Quest of Mankind for Divine Love

The perennial quest of mankind is to be one with God. When we make the slightest effort to attain Radha,the divine feminine energy or shakti and Krishna, the divine energetic source or shaktiman they readily support us. There is instant peace and we easily obtain the company of saints willing to give their blessings.

Revered Usha Bahenji Acquires Fame at a Young Age

Revered Bahenji had acquired great fame at a young age and had great respect for Indian literature.She had imbibed tales of the Shastras-Puranas (scriptures)abounding with knowledge and renunciation even before being born.


Yearning for Krishna, the Dark-hued Cowherd of Vrindavan

Apart from this she had a keen interest in poetry, and an inimitable principled manner of delivering her ideas. Alongside she ardently longed for the divine and was passionately drawn to Radha-Krishna, the beloved and her supreme lover. If devotees representing souls in search of salvation are hungry for the fulfillment of love, that beautiful dark-skinned cowherd of Vrindavan is hungry too.The very foundation of a religion of union is that the individual partial and manifest self must ultimately be joined with the universal, whole and un-manifest Self.

Her association with the Sanatan Dharmis was constant. Bahenji was principal of the Sanatan Dharam Girls School. She had particular interest in spirituality, profound knowledge of the Shastras-Puranas, and clear perspectives of the Bhagvad Gita. Great luminaries visiting Ambala were invariably impressed by this short-statured lady's teasing, spirited, speedy and mature opinion of the scriptures.

The handsome Krishna seeing His love-struck devotees gives support accordingly so that they move in delicious anguish to his side.


Ambala

This time around several mahatmas, learned socialites and speakers were invited to the yearly sammelan of the Sanatan Dharam Sabha. Highly revered Udiya Baba, Shri Hari Baba, Shri Anandamayi Ma, Shri Gangeshvaranandji an expert at the Vedas, Shri Prabhudatt Brahmachari, Shri Swami Ganesh Duttji, Shri Binduji Maharaj and Shri Mukund Hariji Maharaj were all present, adding to the Sabha's pride.

Representing Ambala's Sanatan Dharam Sabha, Usha Bahenji welcomed the array of guests. Doctrines were examined and she got a chance of personally talking with them on several religious issues.They were all impressed on hearing the unprecedented views of wide-eyed Bahenji simply attired, attending to their needs, and managing the scene unpretentiously with a placid mind and loving tenderness.

Revered Bobo's self-effacing persona, a focused bhava of serving Thakurji, selfless reverence for Shri Mahaprabhu, adoration of Vrindavan, attraction for Braj and perspectives on many scriptures enraptured everyone present. Her in-depth review of the Gita was unheard of. This brilliant combination made her strike a close rapport with the saints and receive their blessings.

 Shri Udiya Baba

Shri Purnananda Tirtha ji Maharaj

A chance of sighting Udiya Baba's Annapurna Siddhi (goddess of agriculture and incarnation of Durga;sidhi acquisition of supernatural powers by worship of a deity) presented itself in Ambala. Foodstuffs had been arranged in plenty but they seemed not to suffice for the thronging newcomers.

A request was made to Shri Udiya Baba. He asked all the ingredients to be covered with a cloth and to be served after some time without removing the cover. The prasad was distributed with a generous hand but still there was enough leftover. Bahenji narrated this incident she had seen in person. Baba had implicit faith in Brahma, the all pervading spirit of the universe, and was most accomplished in religious devotion.

Shri Hari Baba

Shri Hari Babaji
She had the good fortune to have darshan of Shri Hari Babaji Maharaj several times in Ambala. Even after coming to Vrindavan she would often go to have a glimpse of Maharajji.

The main attraction which drew everone to Shri Maharaj was the bhakti bhava of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and the propagation of sankirtan or singing songs of a devotion nature. Impressed by his strict discipline of self-denial and conscientious observance of sankalp( to make a grant or give alms in fulfillment of a vow) she had once raved, "He was a such a great devotee that the earth was blessed, the era was honoured and followers were enlightened by his calibre. Several festivals of Vrindavan were graced by his presence."

Shri Ananadamayi Ma

Shri Anandamayi Ma
Which devotee having serious interest in spirituality would be unacquainted with revered Ma's commendable lifestyle. Her character and persona are stotras of inspiration for ascetics.

Pujya Ma had also come along with Udiya Baba and Hari Baba. As of now Ma's loving nature and closeness had steeped followers in a different charm. On seeing a young boy absorbed in the joyous abandon of Ma, Bobo smiled at his spirited antics. When he asked her name she teasingly said that it was Krodhamayi ( one overpowered by anger). Ma came, strolling along. Delightfully the boy shouted from a distance,"Ma, Ma! You are Anandamayi (blissful and joyous) and she is Krodhamayi." Ma stopped and looked at Bahenji with great affection and smiled. Bobo opined that the sense of affinity and oneness she had experienced in that gaze was not possible in this mundane world.

At this end a few years before her death she got a message from Ma. During the span of her illness Santosh Bahenji, Dharam Bahenji, Sushila Bahenji and some others went for her darshan to Anandamayi Ma'sVrindavan Ashram. All of them were overwhelmed by her closeness and affection.

Swami Gangeshwaranand

Shri Gangeshwaranandji Maharaj

Highly revered Shri Maharaj had also come along other saints to the yearly gathering of the Sanatan Dharam Sabha at Ambala. Inspite of being blind, his field of learning and knowledge of the Vedas was unparalleled.Discussing Indian literature with Bahenji, he was pleased. Apart from this occasion he had come to Ambala many times and had personal contact with her. He always exulted about Bobo's noble modesty and simplicity, impressed by her religious devotion, belief and tenderness.

Later on knowing that she had left Ambala and come to stay permanently in Vrindavan he began praising her immensely. With maternal fondness he opined," Usha what can I say about you! Everything was the same for you there as well but the fact that you have come to Vrindavan is a matter of great joy."

Goswami Shri Bindu ji Maharaj

Goswami Shri Binduji Maharaj

Goswamiji's style of reciting the Ramayana has always been praiseworthy. He would often visit Ambala. Revered Bobo was considered an authority on the Ramcharitmanas. She almost knew the entire 'Ramayana', the poetic classic written by Tulsidas, by heart.

Shri Binduji Maharaj was invaribaly impressed by her sharp intellect and mature perspective. He opined that it was virtually impossible to live a lifestyle of such austerity.

Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu

Shri Prabhudattji Brahmachari

On reading the sacred text 'Chaitanya-Charitavali' Bobo's was full of gratitude towards Shri Prabhudattji Brahmachari. She felt that this picturesque life sketch of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu had created an inspiring history for the world of devotees. On his coming to Ambala, she went to pay homage and greet him.

The subject expounded in the book, the use of language and appraising of bhavas are certainly the text's assets. The gushing rasa of is inevitable when the mind and perspectives are in tandem.

In Vrindavan also she went along with Sushila Bahenji, Darshan Bahenji, Uma Bahenji to his ashram for darshan with Vijay accompanying them. He recognised her and met them with great warmth. He was highly pleased to know that she had come to Vrindavan permanently. Later on he blessed her by coming home once or twice.

Dinanath Dineshji's translation of the padas of Shri Bhagvad Gita in pure Hindi was very admirable.Because of Bobo's powerful recitation of the Gita several people would come to study from her. Dineshji would praise her authoritative opinion and had great affection fro her.

Shri Mukundhariji Maharaj style of sankirtan was very impressive. Everyone would rave about the onomatopoeic quality of his when he recited the Shri Radha Krishna Kripa Kataksha Stotras.

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