An excerpt from Ma Yoga Neelam’s upcoming book. Launch 11 December 2022.
Bhagwan develops an ear infection and asks me to find a local doctor. Along with Amrito I accompany Dr Jog to Bhagwan’s room. To find out about the infection, he starts by pushing a probe into His ear… then pressing deeper and observing Bhagwan’s expressionless face alertly. The rising concern on his face is indisputable and he finally snaps, “Isn’t this hurting?” “Yes it is very painful,” replies an unruffled Bhagwan making the doctor fly off the handle! He had been waiting to detect the point beyond which it hurts and stop there, for to go any further was dangerous! It pierces through my heart how, although acutely aware of it, Bhagwan lives at a distance from His body, and so also from any pain.
It seems impossible to gauge the intensity of pain He experiences. He would sometimes say, as a matter of fact, “My body is on fire. My bones are on fire.” He once beeped me right after a discourse and I realised that after swaying His arms to the fast welcome music, pain in His right shoulder shot up. Since then, the musicians have only been playing soft meditation music… As Bhagwan’s health worsens, He stops coming out for discourses.
Aching arms and shoulder joints, nausea, loss of appetite, drop in immunity, hair loss, beard turning white, deteriorating eyesight, weight loss… It appears as if He is aging too fast. Alarmed doctors send bone X-rays, along with samples of hair, blood, urine, and tissue to the best forensic expert laboratories in London. It is remarkable how, in spite of such medical catastrophes currently acting inside His body, His room is still a temple of deep silence, throbbing with aliveness!
Outside Lao Tzu House, our teenagers are neither totally into work nor into meditation. Besides discourse times, they just roam around feeling directionless. Concerned parents are coming to talk to me. When I inform Bhagwan, He asks me to take Amrito along and talk to the teens on the campus, “Encourage them to say everything to their parents without any fear. When children approach with honesty, truth, sincerity… it triggers something in the parents opening their hearts too…” On one hand, I talk to them about sharing freely with their parents, on another, I encourage them to discover their passions and pursue them. “Go to your country to study, learn new skills, enrol for a formal course of your choice, and keep visiting the Ashram during your holidays,” I suggest.
Outwardly, work is expanding at full speed, and within, Bhagwan being Bhagwan, never lets go of a chance to work on us, giving one instruction to me and a contradictory one to the other secretary! Although, remembering Bhagwan doing the same with Laxmi and Ishwar bhai in Mount Abu, I am not upset – the other is. Not only do I have to face their mistrust and emotional blows, but also see the work get obstructed! One day it gets too much for me… red-faced, teary-eyed, I walk into Bhagwan’s room and begin blurting out, “There is too much work and it is becoming very difficult with all these misunderstandings. This must stop… please!”
He lets me cathart till I have no more to say… then looks straight into my eyes and speaks, “You want me jobless? A master has to create chaos; only in chaos stars are born, only in chaos whatever is deep inside you will come to the surface. From there, you can work on yourself and I can work on you.” Presto! An unknown window opens within me and everything becomes very clear… I rise with a smile, hold my right hand in a salute and say, “Yes, Sir! You be on Your job, and I’ll go on mine.”
In an introspective moment, I ask myself, “Why do I get hurt? Why do I need the other to know my truth? Why?” I realise that I want people to trust me, to appreciate my ceaseless efforts. Today, for the first time, I see eye-to-eye the deep-seated need for validation within me. Suddenly… ‘I am not here to solve your problems, but to dissolve your problems, and the difference is great!’ my Master’s words flash before me and I break into a giggle!
It is just another busy afternoon… Bhagwan is dictating a reply to a letter and I am taking notes. From right behind His chair, where His bathroom is being extended, the marble cutting machine makes a shrill sound for twenty seconds and then pauses for another twenty. So that I can hear Him, Bhagwan, too, follows the same speak-and-pause rhythm. Noticing this, Anando, who sits next to me begins to rise. “Where are you going?” Bhagwan asks her. She replies, “I will ask them to stop the work for a few minutes…” “No need! Neelam writes slowly, this gives her enough time,” He says.
Once the letter is complete, He says to us, “When you decide something that you want a new jacuzzi or a bigger library, then you must accept the whole package. It includes dust and noise, I can have an allergic reaction… It was you people only, who have decided for it. Now if we again and again tell the construction boys ‘this is Bhagwan’s rest time’, or ‘stop till He has eaten…’ how will they do their job?” I find out afterwards that Nirvano has been freaking out by the mess outside her room and the incessant sound integral to a construction site; all a grave obstacle to the usual perfection in her caretaking.
With the test reports having arrived from London, Amrito calls for a press meeting, which was attended by local representatives of national newspapers in my office, leaving everyone stunned. The exhaustive tests indicate heavy metal poisoning, perhaps Thallium, that leaves no trace in the body. Based on the ill effects on Bhagwan’s body, it was presumed for the poison to have been induced during those twelve dubious days – when He was held in at times undisclosed American jails, in addition to late-night back-door transits, and the bizarre absence of His memory of an entire day!
Excerpted from Chapter 11 (Page: 278-280) from Ma Yoga Neelam’s book, Seeing, Watching, Living With The Master and Being at Home
- Seeing, Watching, Living With The Master and Being at Home – Review by Sarita