Miracles of Sivananda
A DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY PUBLICATION
Third Edition: 1992
World Wide Web (WWW) Edition : 2000
WWW site: http://www.dlshq.org/
This WWW reprint is for free distribution
© The Divine Life Trust Society
THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY
P.O. Shivanandanagar249 192
Distt. Tehri-Garhwal, Uttar Pradesh,
- Publishers' Note
- You Can
- The Mystery About Miracles
- Experiences of Sadhakas
- The Age of Miracles
- Sivananda-the Real Siddha
- Concerning Miraculous Occurrences
- Swami Sivananda’s Miracles
- Master Of Miracles
- Greatest Miracles Of Sivananda
- Miracles Of The Maharshi
- Siva Rescues Devotees From The Jaws Of Death
- Swami Sivananda-the Miracle-Worker
- Miracles Of Guru-Bhagavan
- Miracles Of My Master
- Preceptor Of Miraculous Powers
- Sivananda’s Darshan
- Miraculous Healing Grace
- Miraculous Experiences Of Swami Sivananda’s Grace
- Blessings That Spelt Success
- Darshan Of Sivananda With Hridayananda
- Gurudev’s Grace
- As I Saw My Master
- Siva Appears In Geneva
- How Sivananda Appeared Before Me
- Guru As Omnipresent God
- Siva Appears In A Vision
- An Entrancing Vision
- Life-Transforming Miracles Of Swamiji
- Gurudev’s Generosity
- A Dream
- Darshan Of Sri Gurudev
- The Gentle Healer
- How My Life Was Changed
- Gurudev’s Call
- Telepathic Forces Of Swami Sivananda
- Disciples’ Experiences
Miracles are not miracles for the Yogi. They are natural and almost inevitable in the plane of consciousness in which he lives. Therefore, he is not even aware of his own psychic and spiritual powers, any more than we feel that being able to walk, talk or see is a wonderful power.
Yet, the layman who experiences the miraculous powers of a sage or Yogi is so highly inspired by them that his faith in the Yogi grows, with it his devotion to the Lord and love of divine life. Spontaneously he expresses his amazement and wonderment—mixed with thankfulness for the benefits derived—at the great powers of the Yogi.
In the miracles of Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj recorded in this volume, the reader will not fail to notice that they have invariably brought about an inner spiritual transformation in the devotees concerned. This is the greatest miracle of Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj. The devotee’s disease is cured or life saved; the devotee’s faith is at once increased; and at the very same moment, there is an inner transformation, a purification of the heart, an intensification of aspiration to realise God. Sri Swami Sivanandaji’s is a miracle that does not help the devotee merely to tide over a difficulty, but also to make rapid spiritual progress, enjoy deeper meditation and live in tune with the Infinite. Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj does not encourage jugglery; but his miracles have always taken the form of an inner spiritual transformation in those who are the beneficiaries.
The present publication is intended to bring home to the public this vital factor in the life of a saint.
—THE DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY.
Do all the good you can
In all the ways you can
In all the places you can
At all the times you can
To all the people you can
As long as ever you can.
THE MYSTERY ABOUT MIRACLES
(H.H. Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj)
Miracles are based on the principle of the concentration of the mind.
The mind has immense powers. It derives its power from the Atman or the Supreme Soul.
The mind is a collection of thoughts. The mind’s energy is dissipated by worry, evil thoughts, cares, anxieties and lack of Brahmacharya.
If you can control the immense amount of power which the mind possesses, through concentration and sublime thoughts, you will acquire Siddhis or the power to do supernatural actions.
The eight major Siddhis are greatest miracles performed by the Raja Yogins. There are various minor Siddhis also.
Siddhis come during the practice of concentration. They are by-products of concentration. You will have to shun them ruthlessly. If you fall a victim to these Siddhis, you cannot reach the goal.
The Siddhis performed by Raja Yogins are true. They cannot change the molecules of an object. They can draw their supply from the cosmic source, ether and create any kind of object through their Yogic power.
A Jnani performs miracles through the power of Satsankalpa (pure willing). A Raja Yogi does miracles through Samyama (Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi combined).
By doing Samyama on the sun, the Yogi gets the knowledge of the fourteen worlds.
By doing Samyama on the moon, he gets the knowledge of the regions of stars.
By doing Samyama on the Pole Star, comes the knowledge of the movements of the stars.
By doing Samyama on the strength of elephants and others, he gets strength equal to those beings.
By doing Samyama on the form of the body and checking the power of comprehension, he is able to make the body disappear or dematerialise.
By doing Samyama on the appearance, etc., of others, the Yogi gets a knowledge of their mind.
By doing Samyama on the Moment, he gets discrimination.
By doing Samyama on the relation of the ear and ether, the Yogi gets the powers of clairaudience.
By practising Samyama on the relation between ether and the body, the Yogi attains extreme lightness of the body and the ability to travel through space.
By Samyama on the three modifications of the mind, comes the knowledge of the past and future.
Samyama on Samskaras gives him knowledge of births.
Samyama on the senses gives mastery over them.
By practising Samyama on the distinctive relation between Sattva and Purusha, he gets the powers of omnipotence and omniscience.
Samyama on the inner light gives him the knowledge of the subtle, the obscured and the remote. Samyama on one’s own Self gives the Yogi clairaudience, higher touch, clairvoyance, higher taste and higher smell through intuition. By intuition he gets all knowledge.
Real Yogins perform miracles to convince their disciples of the existence of transcendental things and God. They will not perform miracles on the platform.
Queen Chudalai performed miracles to open the eyes of her husband Sikhidhvaja. She stood above the ground. She moved in the sky. Sri Sankara performed many astounding miracles. He drank molten lead and passed into the body of a king (Parakaya Pravesa). Sri Sadasiva Brahman was a great Yogi. He performed many real miracles. He was seen in different places at the same time. He was buried underneath the ground on the bank of Kaveri river for some months. His hands were cut and he brought again the full hands.
Akalkot Swami turned bone into gold. Another Swami passed urine over a stone and it turned into gold. Ramalinga Swami turned water into oil. Jnanadev made a wall move. Changdev rode on a tiger, using a cobra for a whip. Such miracles are performed through the power of the Yogi’s Satsankalpa. He is one with the Cosmic Will which creates, sustains and dissolves this universe, just as the single Sankalpa of the Supreme Being...“I am One, may I become many”...at once materialised into this vast universe.
Some are born Siddhas. Sri Dattatreya was a born Siddha. He created a woman and a bottle of wine by his Yogic power to get away from the disturbing crowd.
Some exhibit small miracles with the help of some disembodied spirit. These are nothing. These have nothing to do with spirituality. Drinking nitric acid, swallowing nails, chewing snakes and glass pieces, walking over fire are not the real Siddhis of spiritual Yogins. They have nothing to do with Yoga. They are performed by charlatans to collect money. Even educated people are deceived by looking at these performances. Beware of cheap miracle-mongers. Do not be duped.
Miracles have been caused by prayer. God has always granted the fervent prayers of faithful devotees. The greatest miracle is faith.
Mantras have great power. Sound can be converted into light and form. Certain mystic formulae have tremendous power. When a man has been stung by a scorpion, the Mantravadi recites a Mantra, and the man is relieved of the pain! Is this not a miracle? This is the power of the Mantra. That power has been further augmented by the spiritual power of the great Yogis who have chanted the Mantra and attained Siddhi in it. The faith of the Sadhaka who takes to that Mantra now acts as a key to release its divine force.
To convert water into wine is not difficult. But it is difficult to transform worldly-minded people into divine beings and put them in the path of Yoga. This is the greatest miracle.
Miracles there have been for ages and will continue to be till the end of the world.
Miracles are astounding only for the layman. For Yogins, these are simple things. They are not extraordinary. For those who know the principles and the laws of Yoga, who have controlled nature, they are common occurrences.
EXPERIENCES OF SADHAKAS
Miracles are God’s answers to the devotee’s sincere prayer. Miracles are a saint’s timely reassurance to help the sincere Sadhaka, escape a pitfall and circumvent an obstacle. They are the subtle emanations of the saint’s soul-force which are borne on the wings of the saint’s love of all beings and love of service, that reach the destination in time to save, uplift and to guide.
The helping hand is hidden from our view but nothing is beyond the saint’s comprehensive vision. To his all-seeing eye there is no secret; in the realm of his infinite power there is no miracle. He performs miracles in precisely the same manner as we lift our limbs.
Countless have been the instances when disciples and devotees of H.H. Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj far and near have received great help from him in mysterious ways to ward off physical ills, mental disturbances, intellectual confusions and spiritual setbacks. Many have already been published and a few more and representative selection from the devout letters of spiritual aspirants from various places are given here, and they are surely an inspiring reading if only they convince us of powers higher than human and rekindle in our hearts an aspiration and a hope that would spur us on to greater and ever-increasing endeavour to reach the goal of human life.
The divine touch of sages healing incurable diseases and at times even bestowing back dead are actually facts in the spiritual realm. These miracles baffle reason, no doubt; but, more often than not the miracle implies not merely the nullifying of known law but rather the evoking and bringing into play of a higher law of which the uninformed observer is quite unaware. Hence the latter’s wonder and astonishment at the occurrence. When the cause is hidden from your ken and in the absence of the connecting sequence the effect alone is beheld, you feel it as something supernatural.
Clergymen, Doctors and Some Scientists Agree that
THE AGE OF MIRACLES
HAS NOT PASSED
1. Dr. John Brobeck, Professor of Physiology at the University of Pennsylvania’s Medical School:
Scientists who are Christians do not consider the miracles described in the Bible as impossible, and such scientists now accept that the blind were made to see and the lame to walk.
2. Dr. W.J. McNally, President of the Montreal Medico-Chirurgical Society, and a Roman Catholic:
Miracles are very real things. A miracle is something done by God and can be brought about at any time. Jesus performed miracles while on earth, and Catholics believe that miracles can happen again whenever God wants to intervene.
3. Dr. J. Cyril Flanagan, Montreal Dentist and Prominent Church of England lay reader:
Miracles are caused by a power scientists know nothing about.
4. A Psychiatrist:
There is no final answer to Plato’s dictum that mind comes first and matter latter, which is the idea behind miracles.
5. Prof. T.G. Henderson, Chairman of the Department of Philosophy at McGill:
The sceptic tradition established by English-speaking philosophers, such as Hume, had almost worn itself out. The human seems to be more receptive today of these events which do not conform to the general law. It is possible to interpret individual events even if seemingly outside the general law of nature.
6. Dean James S. Thomson, of the Faculty of Divinity at McGill:
All experienced ministers, most doctors, would agree that miracles have never ceased. Scientists have abandoned the view of the universe as a closed mechanical system operated by what are called the laws of nature, but we must still believe in an orderly world, although not to the exclusion of spiritual agencies which are the direct action of God.
7. Rev. Norman Lawson, Minister of St. James Union Church:
I believe in a world of law and order, in which the effect always followed the cause. But, miracles usually happen in times of great faith, and faith releases powers that cannot operate unless it (faith) is present. In time when scepticism is rife faith does not operate on the same scale.
8. Rev. Roland Bodger, Rector of St. Cuthbert’s Anglican Church:
Miracles in themselves are not very significant spiritually.
Sivananda—the Real Siddha
(Sri Swami Sadananda)
It is usual for Swami Sivananda to tell us and also write in his books that a real spiritual aspirant ought not to hanker after Siddhis or supernatural powers, because when they are desired, further spiritual progress will be arrested. He has seen some instances in which people who were making good progress were caught by the temptation to acquire these powers and from then they had a serious fall. Nobody can dispute the correctness of Swamiji’s opinion in this matter. But a doubt comes to me from time to time. Numerous are the letters received at the Ashram from people in different places mentioning many miracles performed by Swamiji. It cannot be that all who write such letters are uttering falsehoods or are under any hallucination. It is likely that there is a small percentage of self-deceiving persons. But judging from the nature of the events reported to have happened—reported with many details and meticulous care in the narration—I have to come to the conclusion that Swamiji is exercising supernatural powers or Siddhis. If so, will he have a fall? I can safely assert that he cannot fall—because he has risen above the states of rising and falling. Since he has reached the stage in which he can identify himself with the Supreme—call it Atman or Satchidananda or Isvara, as you like—where is the question of rising and falling? When the ego is negated, how can there be any kind of danger?
Of one thing we can be certain. The real Siddha who does not want or care for Siddhis, but who manifests Siddhis for unselfish reasons and as a result of communion with the Lord or the Brahman, is an entirely different person from the little man who has psychic powers to do things which are extraordinary or who has control of spirits. The power over spirits (good or bad) is entirely different from spiritual power. And no real Siddha goes about calling himself a Bhagavan or parading his powers. It cannot be said that the Siddha does not know that he performs miracles but they are not miracles to him—they are just ordinary things for him because he lives in the plane beyond the reach of the common man. I have to conclude that Swami Sivananda is one such. But he does not reveal himself as such to all and sundry.
(Sri Swami Shivapremananda)
Is Sivananda a miracle-maker? Yes and no! Time and again he has declared that a true Yogi or Sannyasi should never openly display his spiritual powers. For all his spiritual achievements go in vain if they are exhibited in the market of inquisitive onlookers. But Truth can seldom remain hidden for long. Numerous episodes of amazing faith and devotion pour forth from all parts of the world, testifying the unique, hidden spiritual spark of Swami Sivananda. And he becomes mute when curious visitors and correspondents press and badger him to tell them the secret of what is called his “Miracles”. On rare occasions he would smile charmingly and say politely: “It is all God’s Grace!” Yes! disciples of Swami Sivananda are intensely aware of his miracles though he has never openly displayed them.
Concerning Miraculous Occurrences
(Sri Swami Omkarananda)“A most miraculous work ....
I have seen him do.
—Macbeth, IV, 3
The magical operations of the realised powers of the liberated consciousness of Swami Sivananda have been creating miraculous phenomena in the ‘everyday life of psychically-susceptible’, or probably ‘believing’ or ‘desiring’ or ‘deserving’ disciples in every town and city of the world. Whether it is a solitary building in a locality on fire that remained miraculously unburnt in the land of Pakistan, during the ‘partition’ holocaust or a fast-running car on a hill-track that was, though two of its wheels going far over the precipice through its centre of gravity fight in the abyss, mysteriously pushed back on to the road by a powerful invisible hand, or a German or a Latvian devotee, who escaped death during the air-raids of the world-war, while everyone around him faced it—it is undeniably and unmistakably, as the written personal letters of the parties referred to testify, the work of Swami Sivananda.
Who is this Sivananda, on the banks of the Ganga, in the heart of the foothills of the Himalayas, whose ‘voice’ is heard by a few continental European devotees in Germany and Denmark day after day? This Sage, in whom the divine nature is so fully manifest and active, this Sivananda who has been granting sights of his physical form, at the same time to two persons—one in the isle of Ceylon and the other in Santiago, South America—who is he? Shakespeare asks us to “consider him well” (King Lear).
Who is this Sivananda, who, while not moving a furlong away from amidst us is reported to have literally stood by the sick patients in a Durban hospital? This Sivananda, whose packets of ashes sent by post all over the world, as Prasad of Lord Visvanath in the temple of the Ashram, have not only been curing the headaches of the housewives in the city of Bombay, acting as laxative to chronic constipation patients in Singapore, but proved to have breathed a new vigorous life into the dying bones of men in South India—who is he? This Godhead redeemer, this Sivananda, who makes his presence palpably felt by a devotee in Geneva and chats with another in Kuala Lumpur—who is he? Shakespeare answers: “The Thing Itself” (King Lear), and by this he means the higher liberated consciousness in all its bareness. Yes: Sivananda has contacted the Godhead within us: he has experienced the inmost principle in us, the Thing-in-Itself, and is in possession of Its powers. The supreme poet Shakespeare has caught in the magic web of his ethereal thought, the very soul of the fact: Sivananda is the Thing Itself. The Consciousness of this sage does not function, as ours does in us, through the sensuous media of the physical body, through the limitation of the mental apparatus. His is the Consciousness that is unimpeded in its action, pervading everywhere, spreading its tentacles around the world into the hearts and minds of everyone who looks to him. Though present everywhere and by the side of everyone on earth, he is specially felt, or seen or known by only those who have consciously or unconsciously tuned themselves with him. The most refined soul of an eminent American Poet, tumbled upon this experience:The tidal wave of deeper souls
into our inmost being rolls.
And lifts us unawares,
Out of all meaner cares.
It has been an ecstatic experience with hundreds of Sivananda’s devotees though they have not come anywhere near the physical appearance of the sage to feel and know him. As we learn from some of his epistles, laden with admiration of the invisible and pervasive greatness of Swami Sivananda that they have been standing either by his picture or by his photograph or in airy nothing, saying of him in the words of Tennyson:“Thou seemest human and divine,
the highest, holiest manhood, Thou.”
No universally acknowledged world-teacher of a few centuries past, we have reasons to maintain, was so powerful, so popular, so full of divine boldness and energy, so bubbling with joy, so triumphant in his ways, so infinitely confident, so spiritually magnetic, so clever in exploiting normal, supernormal, scientific means of communications to distribute physical well-being, mental peace and spiritual salvation, to countless individuals inhabiting this globe of ours. There is something within and around the circuit of the self-luminous spiritual form of Sivananda. Of the Sage, Shakespeare said:Within whose circuit is Elyssium,
and all that poets feign of bliss and joy:
—Henry VI 3rd Pt. 1, 2.
Swami Sivananda’s life amidst us has been giving us innumerable intimations of the nature of the Eternal Being; a little sympathetic attunement with his presence would engender in us a concrete sense of the divine power; he has been delivering to us the Messages of God, distributing a little of his knowledge and peace. Swami Sivananda is the standing truth of the many possibilities of the powers of Consciousness.
Did the postman deliver you a registered packet containing a book—yes, just the book that you would have desired to possess this morning? Then look up for the autograph in the book. It is from Swami Sivananda. A spiritual mind reads your thoughts, for Swami Sivananda; and a spiritual force operating on mental thoughts and physical things materialises your thoughts. Did that barren woman in Madras conceive? She would tell you that it was a little magic wrought by the repetition of a sacred formula, Mantra, which she received from Swami Sivananda, and that the sage himself had conducted prayers to that effect. A Persian devotee of Swami Sivananda, an in-patient for some time in a hospital in the Russian zone of Germany, was declared by the head physicians of that hospital, to be a hopeless and incurable case. However, the doctors operated upon the patient, with a strong conviction that the patient would not survive. The patient who is now hale and hearty, discharged by the hospital during the month of May, 1954, writes that while he was being led to the operation theatre and in the operation theatre itself, he did nothing but with all the faith his heart is capable of, thought of Swami Sivananda and repeated his name; and Lo! a miracle was performed. The patient began walking on the third day, while others who have been operated upon for the milder forms of the same disease, are lying in the hospital for months and showing no signs of survival. The second para of the writer’s letter speaks of the utter amazement of the doctors. Reading this letter, Shakespeare says of Swami Sivananda: “The mere despair of surgery he cures” (Macbeth, IV, 3).
But this is only one among the countless cases of miraculous healing that Swami Sivananda has worked. The Sage has been doing deeds that are: more divine “Than breath or pen can give expression to” (Troilus and Cressida, 3, 3). He is “Of greatest works finisher” (All’s Well That Ends Well 2, 1).
And the story of the life of this light of the world is spiritually exciting and enlightening. Conceiving a curiosity, cynics come to criticise him, but go converted. The miraculous power of the story of the Sage is known to Shakespeare. His “tale, sir, would cure deafness” (Tempest, 1, 2).
Shakespeare has seen Sivananda minister “to a mind diseased”; pluck “from the memory a rooted sorrow”; raze “out the written troubles of the brain” (Macbeth, 5, 3).
The concomitant powers of Swami Sivananda’s God-communion, have brought into existence innumerable instances of miraculous happenings. But, whether it is the divine powers of Providence or the forces of the liberated Consciousness, that are working through him, these miracles, or that it is he that has been consciously exercising the highest spiritual forces in bringing them into being, or whether he knows as to what is being done through him, must, for our uninitiated intellects, remain a riddle of the Spiritual Sphinx; for the sage has not so far given a public acknowledgement of his authorship of the many miracles that are being rationally referred to as being performed by him. However, The Divine Life Society has been preserving the recorded oral narrations and the epistles embodying documentary evidences of the extraordinary happenings and supernormal ‘occurrences’ wrought by Swami Sivananda. As we estimate the records of the miracles that Swami Sivananda has worked in the lives of countless souls around the world run into five fat volumes. They are remaining unpublished for want of a competent editor who could wield this enormous material, give it a logical correctness and present them for the reading public. Or, would it not be better for us to cease to entertain the idea of pouring this ‘wealth of evidence’ into print and sing with Longfellow:His signal deed and prowess high
Demand no pompous eulogy
Ye saw his deeds!
Why should their praise in verse be sung?
The name that dwells in every tongue
Nil minstrel needs;
—Coplas De Manrique.
Upon the pages of the scaled volume that I bear
The deed divine is written in characters of gold,
That shall never grow old,
But through all ages burn and shine
With soft effulgence!
O God, it is Thy indulgence
That fills the world with the bliss
Of a good deed like this!
—Epilogue to The Golden Legend
Or shall we not be moved by an aspiration to provoke and enlighten the mind of the sceptical sections of contemporary humanity shut as it is in the brilliant shell of the limited experience, enquiry and enlightenment, proclaim the miraculous deeds of the modern Messiah, the Swamiji, whose marvellous modes of transmitting messages to devotees all over the world, have completely overshadowed the modern wonder of wireless that depends for sending its signals on the existence of electrical waves and cannot afford to dispense with the transmitting and receiving points? Yes, Robert Browning’s experience is shared by everyone of us:do I not
Pant when I read of thy consummate deeds,
And burn to see thy calm pure truths outflash
The brightest egoism of earth’s philosophy?
We have our full share of Shakespeare’s wonder at the divine deeds of Swami Sivananda; so, the resolve of the supreme poet rendered into the following two lines, would be ours individually:I would applaud thee to the very echo
That should applaud again.
—Macbeth, 5, 3.
Swami Sivananda’s Miracles
(Prof N.K. Srivastava)
The scientific method of observation is limited to the objects of the senses and intellect. It is yet too imperfect to be applicable to transcendental facts. Still the miracles of a saint must be reported objectively. Hence in themselves the miracles have a pragmatic value.
Honesty and fairness to the scientific world demands that the miracles should be reported in the lifetime of the saint so that if there is any doubting Thomas among the authorities on the scientific research, he may have the opportunity of contacting the saint and verifying for himself the saint’s power of performing miracles.
What is a miracle? It is not an illusion of magic. It is the saint’s mysterious ability to approach God and persuade Him to include in the programme of nature something which the saint or His devotees and lovers consider unselfishly desirable for the good of humanity. This includes individual or collective or even cosmic problems.
When I first met Swami Sivanandaji in 1943 the problem of marriage was agitating my mind. He guessed it. He kept mum over it for two years. A year before my marriage, he sent me his Ashirvad that I was going to be married. It was a surprise to me for I had nearly given up the idea of marriage and there was no proposal of marriage.
At that time my youngest sister, Miss. Mira Srivastava (now Mrs. Sinha) had a peculiar type of facial eczema. The more it was treated the worse it became. The doctors were outwitted. We brought her to Swamiji. First he tried to put us off by suggesting the names of some big doctors in Delhi. But my mother and all my sisters who became great devotees of Swamiji afterwards fell at his feet as their last refuge. He chanted Ram Nam and gave an ointment to apply. In a few days she was radically cured. For her beauty of face and happy marriage she owes to Swamiji a debt of gratitude which neither she nor her husband nor her brothers and sisters can ever pay.
My father fell seriously ill in 1941, while we were all staying at Gopal Kutir, Rishikesh. He despaired of his own life. I rushed to Swamiji for medicine. Without even hearing my account of my father’s ailment, Sri Swamiji gave four powders. He told me to enjoy the Lord’s Prasad without worrying about the illness of my father. The powders would cure him. The third powder brought him round.
My sister, a blessed disciple of Swamiji, went to Patna and started preaching the gospel of Swamiji. A woman came to her and begged that a son might be born to her. In her ecstatic mood Shyama gave her a Mantra and blessed her in Swamiji’s name. Shyama, immediately afterwards, wrote to Swamiji to support her in her presumptuous act. Swamiji wrote her back saying that her blessings had already been substantiated. In due course, the woman had a beautiful son.
In 1944, I paid a casual visit to Rishikesh. I went to Swamiji to pay my respects. Of his own accord he told me that I was going to fall seriously ill in a few months’ time. I was taken aback at his words. But instantly he assured me that I would be well. The prophecy was fulfilled. He also predicted that I was not to stay long at Surajpura. This prophecy also was fulfilled.
Sir Rajira Ranjan Prasad Sinha, the President of the Legislative Council of Bihar, fell seriously ill. I had talked many times to him of the glories of Swamiji. In a moment of despair he sent for me. He asked me to make a personal request to Swamiji to save him. I did so and his life was saved for a few years, for which he was ever afterwards thankful to Sri Swamiji.
The Raja of Atgarh had fallen from the eyes of the British on account of his burning patriotism. He sought a very noble refuge in Swamiji. Both he and his Rani led an admirable saintly life when I met them at Banaras. To my surprise Swamiji’s blessings saved him from the persecution of British imperialism!
When I met Swamiji for the first time in 1940, I did not believe in the reality of meditation. I thought it was all either a dream or wishful thinking, illusion or hallucination. But he asked me to meditate for some hours that day. It was the first day of the first Sadhana Week. The very first day I saw Swamiji laughing in my meditation. I then tallied this experience with similar experience of my sisters in their meditation, the very same day and hour. The time of meditation was 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
In September 1948, I stayed with Swamiji and plunged into Sadhana under his direction. I was practising Sirshasana-meditation without Swamiji’s knowledge. When my practice went up to 45 minutes, one day I saw Swamiji in my meditation in a gown which he had never put on before. After my Sirshasana-meditation, I was proceeding to the Bhajan Hall. On my way I met Swamiji coming up the stairs of his Kutir. I was dumbfounded to see him dressed in the same gown which I had seen in my meditation. He smiled and remarked that I was doing Sirshasana very well.
On September 13, 1952, the clothes of my wife caught fire. Her burns were of the third degree. On the 14th, I received a letter from Swamiji asking me her condition! I had not written to Swamiji since I left him in 1951! Nor had he! The doctors despaired of her life because the wounds had become terribly septic. But she got a letter of invitation from Swamiji to join the Sadhana Week in December 1952. We were fully reassured that she would not die. She is alive and kicking.
Once I approached Siva and prostrated as usual. With his usual smile Swamiji asked me to go behind the temple with my family and meditate there. Puzzled was I, and I thought, “Let us have a trial, in any case Swamiji is a saint, I will obey his commands”. Thinking like this I went with my family and lodged ourselves in different nooks and sat there doing our Japa. Oh what a wonder! Everyone of us beheld the luminous form of Siva in front of us with his radiant smile on his lips. All the members of the family were wonder-struck. After a pause we went silently to the Master and bowed to him. He said, “You had a nice meditation? It is a good experience”. Now the little bit of doubt I was having on Swamiji’s greatness had gone completely and automatically I surrendered to him.
At least Vedantins hardly believe in anything but the highest impersonal universal experience of Samadhi. Yet Sri Swami Krishnanandaji, a Vedantin of vast learning and practical wisdom was once sick—rather his body was! Biliousness and fever had a firm grip on his poor constitution; and they showed no sign of relaxing their hold for days on end. No medicine, fasting or other therapeutics could be of any avail. Very near despair he resigned himself and thought the best thing was to take rest. Hardly a few minutes had elapsed the dull head suddenly cleared up. A gush of energy filled him. He rubbed his eyes and sat up. “What am I dreaming? Oh! am I drunk?” He looked around Siva—Siva—Siva—all around Siva. Siva on the walls, Siva on the chair, Siva himself as the water-pot. Siva the door, Siva the door-mat, Siva the stick, Siva the bed, Siva the cloth. Siva alone exists. Biliousness vanished. Fever disappeared. Krishnanandaji was a few minutes later taking his bath.
Master Of Miracles
(Sri A.K. Sinha)
It is meet that life-history of our revered Gurudev, His Holiness Sri Swami Sivananda, should have been published by a large number of his devotees. I make no attempt at describing him just as I would not try to describe the sun. That my family and I look to His Holiness for divine help when in difficulties either spiritual or material, would show what he is to us.
What he is to us, he is to innumerable fellow-men of ours. His letters invariably soothe his devoted correspondents however miserable they might be. Those of us who have had the good fortune of experiencing his personal magnetism would forget their worries and feel uplifted. How I wish the statesmen of the modern world met His Holiness. They would then realise how terribly misguided they are and how swiftly their materialistic plane could lead them and their countries to destruction. I have still hopes that the mad race of armaments will end by teaching the runners the lessons that they need—the lessons that are contained in masterpieces in spiritual literature that flow from His Holiness’s pen to prove that love and not hatred can bring peace to mankind. There are two incidents that have recently occurred which I am tempted to mention for the benefit of my fellow devotees. My youngest son while appearing on the last day of his university examinations found to his great disappointment that he could not answer a single question and became so desperate that he stood up with the object of handing over a blank answer paper. He suddenly saw His Holiness putting his hand on his (boy’s) head and sternly asking him to sit down, since the youngster knew all the answers. He obeyed and did answer all questions. His success has been gazetted.
My wife got a severe attack of paralysis while serving me during my illness. Famous doctors who said that it was impossible for them to forecast before 72 hours have passed what turn the disease would take, were amazed to see her getting life in the paralysed parts long before the period of 72 hours ended. My wife felt that His Holiness was making passes over the paralysed parts and what the passes had done the doctors later came to know.
Let us pray that our beloved Sivanandaji lives in his present body for many years to help the world out of the cruel materialism which disgraces mankind. What our foreign brethren have been able to achieve through His Holiness’s grace thrills me and I have no doubt that each of them is popularising Swamiji’s gospel of love in his or her own country. Glory to Swami Sivananda!
Greatest Miracles Of Sivananda
(Sri Swami Venkatesananda)
Devotees of Siva, all over the world, have recounted the astounding experiences they have had of the divine powers of Bhagavan Sivananda; how he appeared in their dreams and gave them wholesome advice, how they saw him in a vision and got his blessings, how he saved them from calamity and healed them of their illness.
To a great Yogi, space and time are no great impediments. If the X-ray can see through flesh and the meteorological instruments can probe into the weather of tomorrow, what cannot the spiritually enlightened mind of a Yogi do? Clairvoyance, thought-transference, distant-healing, etc., are so commonplace with Siva that he might not even be aware of them.
The conduct of The Divine Life Society’s affairs is a great miracle. Without a budget, without a reserve fund, without a bank-balance and without a regular source of income to run a big institution on such a lavish scale is a miracle.
To recruit everyone with the least inclination and lesser qualification into his fold and to transform everyone into a saintly personality without the rigours of austerity or regimented life of Sadhana—that is a miracle of the highest order.
To sit in his simple Kutir on the banks of the Ganga in a corner of the Himalayas and to spread the light of divine knowledge to the four corners of the world, to let his life-transforming message resound in every nation of the world, this is the greatest miracle of this all-pervading Divinity who appears before us as Swami Sivananda.
Here are some few incidents where Siva’s Prasad has worked wonders:
“I started for Hyderabad (Sind) to bring my moveables from there with your blessing and your Prasad as my protection. By the miraculous effect of your Prasad and blessings several other passengers in the train coming to Bombay were saved and all of us returned to our home safely with our lives and moveables unharmed. Whenever I was in need of help or in any trouble I concentrated, meditating upon you and also used the Prasad sent to me by Your Holiness. My words cannot describe your invincible divine power in the matter of how I have been saved and how I have been brought out from entanglement. I pray that Your Holiness’s miraculous blessings may be showered on me and I request Your Holiness to shower your blessings on my mother and wife as they are sometimes ailing from sickness.
—Sri Dwarakadas, Madras.
When I was a student I was suffering from a pain in the stomach. Your Holiness was pleased to send me Prasad and give me Upadesh of ‘Om Namah Sivaya’ Mantra for Japa. I have been doing Japa regularly for the last three or four years. I have gained good improvement in my health. I have no pain now.
—Sri Gopal Rao Bapat.
The Divine programme was such that the Prasad reached me the very day when the previously sent Prasad was finished and nothing was left for the next morning. That is my medicine.
—Sri Vidyananda (Raja of Atgarh).
It is strange, indeed! Complaints of mine are cured. As soon as I receive thy letter and apply the Bhasma I am cured of my disease. All the members of the family are amazed at thy power.
—Sri Triolkooswar Barua, Jorhat.
Miracles Of The Maharshi
We all know what a miracle is. Any extremely remarkable happening or extraordinary occurrence is a miracle. The great French philosopher, Voltaire, once said that “anything admirable is a miracle”. If the sun shines at midnight, if the moon sheds her lustre simultaneously with the sun at midday, if a dead man walks with his head in his arms, if a piece of dry straw or paper flung into a blazing fire remains unconsumed, if a lamp burns without oil, it is undoubtedly a miracle; and God willing all these things are not outside the range of possibility.
Some foolish philosophers hold that there is no such thing as a miracle since it implies the violation of certain immutable, eternal mathematical and divine laws by God Himself, the Author of those laws. It is true that God is the Author of these laws and the Architect of all creation, but will they not concede God the power and the freedom to modify a law here or alter a law there for reasons best known to Him and Him alone and incomprehensible to their puny, pigmy intellects?
Oh! When will man learn to respect God without questioning His Omniscience, Omnipotence, Wisdom and Independence? Oh, when will he learn to bow down before Him in humble submission born of complete faith in Him and His countless attributes! Does man want God to be tied down to reason and reason alone? Cannot God do anything without assigning any reason? Cannot God be above reason or transcend reason? Is it not the height of sheer foolishness to probe into the whys and hows of God’s actions? O ignorance! Thy powers are inscrutable and impenetrable indeed!
This world has in all ages and climes seen miracles by the hundreds. Savitri rescued her husband Satyavan from the clutches of Yama, the God of Death. Markandeya, destined to die at the age of sixteen, successfully defied Death and is supposed to live even now as young as when he conquered Death. Jesus fed five thousand people with just five loaves of bread; the daughters of the high-priest Anius changed whatever they liked to corn, wine or oil. Karna was the son of Kunti and Sun-God in the same manner as Romulus and Remus were the offspring of a god and a vesta; the Palladium descended from heaven on the city of Troy. The hair of Berenice was transfigured into a constellation. Is there a nation in which the most extraordinary and amazing miracles have not been performed which the people of those nations do not cherish with faith and reverence?
When there is faith, there is miracle; where there is reason, miracle is wisely silent. It certainly stands to reason that miracles can be performed by the saints even today, if they were possible with the saints of yesterday; if they are possible with Christianity they are equally possible with Hinduism or any other religion.
The possibility of working miracles depends upon an intimate knowledge of nature which fortunately or unfortunately is not yet the common property of all. The impossibility of performing miracles can arise when such miracles do not coincide with the laws of nature so far known to the present-day generation. But all thinking and intelligent people will decline to assign a finality to the inexhaustible and endless wealth and resources of Nature.
Of course, it should be admitted that the possibility or otherwise of believing in miracles depends upon several factors such as the temper of the individual, environments, association and development. If he is a believer in an all-knowing and all-powerful God, and if he is endowed with the eye of faith, he sees one thing; but if on the contrary he is a member of the godless and diabolical society, the material eye is still blinded and disabled to see anything at all.
We often forget the wealth of knowledge and discoveries that stood to the credit of our forbears in ages long gone by. We discredit past facts on the ground that they are very often so very different from the present known facts. As kingdoms have appeared and disappeared, as nations have grown and decayed, as tides have ebbed and flowed, as seasons have appeared and vanished, as day and night have alternated, as men were born and have died, as gases expanded and contracted even so the sciences have flourished and degenerated.
Has not scientific genius a hundred and one miracles to its credit today? Will it not be arrant foolishness to deny it the capacity to do so thousands of years ago? What strikes us today and what does not strike us today, has struck people before and the famous Vedic precept “What you have today is but an imitation of what you had millions of years ago” sounds perfectly logical. It is the conceit of man that makes him revel in the idea that he is the specially gifted person by the God to alter the destinies of the world or revolutionise it and that the ancients could not have known that he now sees through the fire of his genius and that the ancients could not have known that he cannot now see through the fire of his genius.
Why do not miracles happen now before our eyes just as they did in days of yore? There is no reason why they should. Are miracles to occur for everyone for the mere asking or wishing whenever and wherever desired? Were such a happening the sole ground for carrying conviction then miracles should go on endlessly and everywhere and there would be nothing in the world save miracles! But then they would no more be miracles!
How can one’s complaint that he has not been personally a witness to miracles be evidence that others have not witnessed them and that if miracles have failed to come to the notice of a few men they have no existence whatever in the present times?
If miracles must take place for every man, then Krishnas, Christs and Buddhas must be born every day, nay every minute “ad nauseam”! We must therefore in addition to the evidence of our own senses add the evidence of seers, sages and saints, expand beyond our tiny intellectual cell and wait in patience.
As to the question why miracles are confined to certain ages and not continued through all time our simple answer is that we cannot lay down conditions on God’s operations. He knows, in His supreme wisdom when it shall be a day and when it shall be a night. Unbroken continuity of miracles or God’s direct manifestations would lose all meaning and fail in the purpose for which they are intended. Manifestation at particular times is the general Law of Periodicity which prevails all over the world in God’s government of His Universe. As evolutions and involutions alternate, periods of special manifestations and non-manifestations of God also alternate. And this is the moral effect of training ourselves in faith, charity, love and expectancy and appetising ourselves for the sublime beauty and bliss in store for the truly yearning souls.
Unless and until the individual soul is prepared beforehand by a course of spiritual culture (Sadhana) beginning with inclination or proneness and terminating with a burning craving for the Divine, it cannot appreciate the Divine. The fruit must, therefore, be withheld for a long time before its lusciousness and sweetness is longingly experienced or felt.
Even when Incarnations like Christ, Krishna, Buddha or Rama traversed this earth, people disbelieved their divinity. Lord Krishna advised the Gopis who believed in Him unswervingly “Go home, ye Gopis for ye will keep your minds better fixed on Me when so distanced than when near Me” (Bhagavata: X-23-24).
God remains hidden from our sight that we may constantly remember Him the better for a thing loved is more doted on in its absence than when present before our eyes. Like the poor man whose mind continuously dwells upon his lost gold, God becomes lost to us in order that our minds may dwell upon Him at all times not that He is unwilling or apathetic to answer our prayers or longings. Break in the continuity of God’s miracles is only apparent but to the spiritually illuminated or perfected soul a Wonder of wonders, a Miracle of miracles always sustains!
Various miracles are attributed to Jesus Christ. When he was preaching and teaching in a synagogue the Pharisees brought a man with a withered hand. Jesus pronounced his word of healing upon him and immediately he became whole. On other occasion a palsied man was brought to Jesus’ presence. Jesus saw through his divine eye the cause of the malady and the profound faith the sufferer had in him. Therefore, Jesus took pity on him and assured him of God’s forgiveness. Similarly, to the sinful woman who washed his feet with her tears in deep penitence and to the dying thief who turned to him on the cross, Jesus prayed for God’s forgiveness.
Repentance, contrition and change of heart are the conditions laid down by Jesus in his teachings for securing God’s forgiveness of human sins.
The miracles attributed to Jesus are essentially records of healing and the majority of them were healings of deranged or disordered minds. Many diseases like epilepsy or insanity that would now be termed physical or mental were in the days of Jesus attributed to devil possession. There is a remarkable instance recorded in the Bible wherein Jesus wanted the devils on coming out of a man’s body to enter into a herd of swine. The devils actually entered into the swine as Jesus willed, rushed down a precipice and were drowned in the sea.
Power over devils and the testimony of demoniacs whom he healed were the chief evidence that induced belief in his divinity in the minds of the apostles. Undoubtedly Jesus did possess tremendous powers to calm disordered minds. The working of those powers was psychological. The miracles of healing leprosy, paralysis and blindness also belong to the category of mental or spiritual healings which are now well-known to medical science.
But one thing stands out patent to all intelligent and thinking people about the miracles of Jesus. His miracles failed to compel belief in his authority in the critically minded Pharisees who often challenged him to show them a sign from heaven that they might believe in him. But Jesus sternly refused to give them any sign. “An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign and there shall no sign be given to it”, he declared. He was unwilling to compel belief that way.
His miracles of healing were all acts of mercy compelled out of him by human suffering. He strictly advised all concerned not to advertise his miraculous powers. The miracles were his responses to acts of faith on the part of the ailing and the diseased whom he healed. It is very noteworthy that he failed to perform such miracles when such faith was lacking.
Where there is faith, healings like those of Jesus still take place. When Jesus was once preaching in his home-town of Nazareth he met with the proverbial disdain of “the prophet in his own home.” The people taunted him with his low birth and challenged him to perform any of his miracles. The Messiah failed to do even his works of healings because of the unbelief.
“Mystery” is an open secret to those who have willing hearts to receive the truth but concealed to the unreceptive and the ununderstanding.
Capacity to perform miracles or otherwise is not the sole criterion by which the spiritual splendour and magnificence of a saint is to be assessed. God manifests Himself through certain chosen saints by working certain miracles through them for the supreme good of the world while certain other saints may be left out for such purposes for reasons best known to God Himself and absolutely beyond the ken of man.
There are several thrilling miracles attributed to my spiritual Lord and Master Maharshi Sivananda who is himself not aware of any of his spiritual powers (Siddhis).
Establishment in right conduct, practice of all branches of Yoga, practice of truth assiduously for a number of years, intense feeling of universal love, practice of the presence of God, conquest of body and mind, practice of good thoughts, good words and good deeds, complete self-effacement and surrender to the Will of the divine are some of the important exercises which make the Maharshi a fit and adequate instrument for the working of miracles by God, who is the sole Author of every miracle, big or small.
Maharshi Sivananda is no miracle-monger who claims any extraordinary spiritual powers or believes he is performing any miracle. There are saints who are aware of their psychic powers and saints who are unaware of them. The Maharshi belongs to the later category.
A big business-magnate from Calcutta, Sri Kashiram Babu recently wrote to an inmate of the Sivanandashram: “Miracle-maker is he who is the presiding deity of Ananda Kutir. You, I and various others involved in the miracle are all the dolls in his hands. He is the wirepuller and to his tunes the dolls dance. The moment he ceases the wirepulling there ends the power of the dolls to dance. That is the truth and that truth he is teaching us every day and through the medium of you, his disciples, we people of the world get to it regularly. Glory to the Miracle-Man and his choicest instruments who adorn his Kutir”.
There are many miracles attributed to the Maharshi that shall ever remain unknown to us. Here are extracts from original letters from the devotees and admirers of the Sage testifying to the authenticity and perfect reliability of some of the miracles worked by the Maharshi in which they themselves were participants:
“Fortunately now I am not suffering from the malady I informed your Holiness in my letter dated 11-8-49. It was a miracle that soon after posting the letter that complaint vanished. It is the greatness of Guruji and God”.
—Sri K.A. Tawker, Madras.
“At Dronachalam in Feb. 1948 I had typhoid and you treated me and cured me by post. In Sept. 1948 early in the morning I had a dream in which I was praying to you with Naivedya (offerings). A black dog came and caught hold of it. I was about to beat it. You appeared smiling and said you were with me. I feel you are with me”.
—Sri P., Dronachalam.
“I feel and am having your Holiness’s grace always with me at all times. This has been proved on 2nd Feb. 1949 when your Holiness’s grace had spared my life from the bite of a cobra”.
—Sri M. Sundaram, Bangalore.
“I am glad to inform you that my son K. Srinivasan, your humble devotee who is in correspondence with your Holiness and who is having your Holiness’s blessings now and then along with your Divine Life Society pamphlets, was through your grace and blessing saved from a serious motor-accident, met with on his way home from college yesterday”.
—Sri C.S. Krishnamurti, Hyderabad.
“Your Holiness’s blessings have every time turned the anxious and trying problems into a hopeful and pleasant phenomenon. Miracles indeed!”
—Sri Hansraj Chadda, Dehra Dun.
“I should certainly say that whenever I get any trouble I at once write to Swamiji Maharaj and by the blessings and divinity of Swamiji I become free from troubles”.
—Sri Shanti Mahajan, Broach.
“On the 14th of this month I had to deliver an address to the members of the Indian Institute of Culture, Bangalore, on Kalidam’s ‘Parvati’. I am always diffident about my speaking capacity. That day in the morning I prayed to Thee and said that the lecture should be a great success; then I applied the Vibhutis (Holy Ashes) of Lord Visvanatha sent by Thee sometime back. It was a wonder to me during the lecture words flowed like the waters of the Ganga for an hour and fifteen minutes. All were supremely pleased and inspired”.
—Prof. Ramakrishna Bhatt, Bangalore.
“I was able to give relief to some one suffering with scorpion-bite by praying to you and the Lord. You are a Doctor and you saved me several times. I saw you by my bedside in Feb. 1948 when I was laid up with typhoid. I can forget anything but your love for the aspirants”.
—Sri G. Srinivasa Rao, Banganapalli.
“A month ago one morning while waking up, I saw your face just as if you had been really in front of me”.
—Sri Mahasita, Paris.
“Yesterday during the Sankirtan and before expressing a few words about Divine Life I just thought of you and lo, I saw you seated in my heart and sometimes in front of me”.
—Sri Damodaran, Mysore.
“I beg to state that by thy blessings my wife has almost completely recovered and that both my wife and myself have been doing Japa and Bhajan of our Mantra and been acting according to your kind directions. I look upon the recovery of my wife from a long-standing disease as nothing short of a miracle wrought by the divine Grace of your Holiness”.
—Sri Pandurangappa, Mysore.
“Everybody in the South Indian colony of South Calcutta Branch says that your Holiness has come to Calcutta and is staying in Ezra Street and that some one had the good fortune of giving you Bhiksha too, while you are actually at Ananda Kutir (Rishikesh)”.
—Sri Narayana Swami, Calcutta.
“In 1947 a Malayali gentleman named Govinda Menon suffering from leucoderma arrived at Ananda Kutir in the full hope and faith that he could rid himself of the fell malady by the grace of the Maharshi. The Maharshi was impressed by his faith and devotion. He asked the young visitor to remain with him for some time. Govinda Menon did regular Japa, Kirtan, etc., took several baths daily in the Ganga, prostrated at the feet of the Maharshi and lived on a restricted diet. Strange to tell in about two months’ time he became completely cured. He left the Ashram full of joy and praise for the Maharshi.
“When I was breathing the hallowed atmosphere of Ananda Kutir you addressed me as Professor and I very humbly told you that I was only an assistant lecturer. Now through your grace your very words have come true! I have been promoted to the gazetted rank in Madras Educational Service. I consider this to be the first mundane fruit of my visit to the sacred Ashram, a stepping stone to better things on the earthly plane, more lasting things on the spiritual plane”.
—Prof T.K. Srinivasan, Madras State.
These are by no means a catalogue of miracles standing to the credit of the Maharshi but just extracts from genuine letters that give a glimpse into the psychology and mental make-up of the individuals who are well-fitted to derive the benefits of the blessings of the saints and sages that have miraculous results to transform pain into joy, failure into thundering successes, disappointments into achievements, sickness into blooming health, calamity into deep peace and darkness into light, health into dynamic life, and adversity into roaring prosperity. Those who give testimony to the Maharshi’s divine powers are not just simpletons, but men and women imbued with tremendous faith in the Maharshi and God, men and women of learning and intelligence and people from not only India but all parts of the world.
Siva Rescues Devotees From The Jaws Of Death
(Prof. O.P. Sharma, Delhi)
As Lord Krishna has said in the sacred Gita, the Lord Himself is presenting Himself as so many Avataras even in this Kali-Yuga and we can definitely say that Sage Sivananda of Ananda Kutir really represents such an Avatara in this materialistic age.
He is just now sitting amidst us an embodiment of the Lord Himself. No argument is necessary and no logic to argue about his unquestionable greatness. We must only have a direct approach to reality which is existing before us all. Like a child we see him smiling and cutting jokes. Sometimes he dances in ecstasy forgetting his entire personality. His generosity and enthusiasm in the distribution of divine knowledge with his eloquent smile is like that of a child. He never cares or worries himself with any kind of worldly Maya. He ever watches with a smiling mood every one of our selfish activities but he never utters a word about anything. Every day he is acting as doctor for our very souls. Every observation by his eyes is a kind of injection to our souls. His Darshan itself will certainly relieve us from the bondage of birth and death. Let us, therefore, approach him with real fortitude and have eternal Bliss, Moksha. It is foolish for man to attempt to try to fly to other worlds. Why should we at all attempt to fly to Chandraloka! Every attempt of such a kind will lead us only to frustration and nothing more. There is a Helicopter, namely Lord Sivananda resting in your heart, you can depend upon him, sit in it and fly to the land of immortality. Faith only is needed and faith is the very first step of realisation. Faith takes firm ground through a sudden chance and gets into that chance by taking a trip to Ananda Kutir and having Darshan of Gurudev. He is verily the Lord incarnate. The embodiment of God in the form of Lord Sivananda is waiting to receive you with wide open arms.
I can dare say it is only a chance followed by some miracles which made my conviction, my faith strong and deep-rooted. That is why I never look at this body sitting before me as an aggregate of five elements but as God Himself manifesting His own Roopa through this glorious form—the form of my revered Guru Sri Swami Sivananda. Here I am narrating a few miracles which changed my entire angle of vision. Certainly I should have been an atheist but for this accident which entirely changed my view of life. I can say they changed my entire life. Everything about my life was a blessing of the Lord Siva. This is my staunch belief. During the year 1942 when the Quit India movement was in its rage my parents visited the Swarga Ashram. They were on their way back to Rishikesh. The Tongawala suggested to them that they can have Darshan of Swamiji also. So they got down at 2 p.m. at Ananda Kutir. They were informed that they can have darshan of Swamiji at 5 p.m. as it was the usual time for him to come out of his Kutir. At the first sight of Swamiji my father was simply hypnotised and my mother was simply fascinated. There was a very grand spiritual aura over his entire face which had a command of its own. There was a very grand cheer and smile in his entire personality.
My mother was worried for the entire period of her later life. My eldest brother Sri R.C. Kumar was at the fighting front in Egypt and for a very long time we never heard anything about his whereabouts. We were all forced to believe that he should have been dead in action in Egypt. My mother’s condition was most pitiable. The majestic personality in the Lord Siva simply smiled and uttered a few graceful sentences. They were this: “Never despair. Your son is all right. He will return soon”. This was all. To our great astonishment my brother reached Sialkot on 21st September 1942 all of a sudden and his first letter from Bombay was received as soon as he stepped on the Indian soil. This was certainly a grand miracle.
So many incidents happened in my brother’s life during his war services that every escape we were feeling was surely a blessing from the majestic Siva of Ananda Kutir. He came back at the appointed time. He was brought to Ananda Kutir by my mother. Surely, he was baptised by the living Lord whom we can all see. He is now working as O/C of a big E.M.E. workshop in India.
Another wonderful incident also happened. It was in August 1947. All of us made up our minds to stay at Sialkot city during the days of disturbances. We had a notion that even in spite of change of governments, people might not change. During the midnight of August 8th my mother was startled by a sudden dream and she suddenly rose up. She dreamt that Swami Sivanandaji ordered: “Leave this place immediately and go to Haridwar”. We simply obeyed reluctantly. We only got into the Indian Border and to our great amazement we heard also that the next train which followed ours was smashed by the Muslims near Wazirabad. Inscrutable are the ways of divinity. But the same God also comes to save us through such sudden dreams and he really guides us every moment of our life. On reaching Haridwar we immediately proceeded to Ananda Kutir and took solace in the Darshan of Gurudev. Rather we took shelter under his ardent protection and settled ourselves. My mother was a staunch devotee of Swamiji and I was also given Guru-Mantra by him. Sometimes I pray for Jinnah Saheb for his indirect blessings on me and family for his creation of Pakistan that gave me a cause for contacting the revered Swamiji. Though we lost everything that belonged to us in Pakistan, we were most blessed in settling at Delhi. My confidence says all this is due to the blessings of my revered Gurudev.
During the Kumbha Mela at Haridwar my parents accompanied by an old lady friend went to take the holy bath in the Ganga. It was not an ordinary day. The crowd was incalculable. Men and women in their enthusiasm were crowded like anything and they were trampling everything. The old lady who followed my parents missed the way and she was thrown down. She was absolutely helpless and cried, “O Siva! come to my rescue”. What happened was this mysterious accident. She actually saw the Lord before her human eyes and without the loss of even a second there was a long rope by her side. Just nearby where the helpless lady was lying from the second storey of a huge building two small boys that were playing witnessed the fate of that lady and suddenly lowered the long rope from above. The lady caught hold of it and was pulled up safely to the amazement of one and all.
The fourth miracle was this. This was a personal experience of myself and my parents. I was living in Sahji Mandir at Delhi. My centre for the B.A. Examination was Daryaganj, i.e., five miles from home. On the 18th of November, the day of the examination, I caught severe pneumonia and later on influenza, too. My suffering was immense and acute. I was absolutely helpless. My condition was only worsening every moment. I was surely in the jaws of death. I was able to observe four pitch coloured dark bodies having deformed organs with long teeth and with wide jaws. They carried thick and strong ropes in their hands. They simply frowned at me. I attempted to cry in despair and I could not. The members of the family began to mourn that I was dying and at the last moment my mother took up chanting the Gita. I could not understand or hear anything. This was only a later narration by my parents. Just at this moment of despair the postman knocked at the door and delivered to us a book-post from Ananda Kutir. That contained a few Tulasi leaves and two packets of Prasad, Vibhuti and Kumkum. Some hope slowly came into my mother’s mind. She opened the packet and diluted the Vibhuti with water and slowly administered two spoonfuls of the Lord’s Prasad into my mouth. I opened my eyes and there was a hope of recovery. By the Lord’s grace and the grace of Gurudev what a great wonder it was that I was saved and I appeared in the B.A. Examination in April 1950 when I was twenty years of age and I got through. This surely was not by my efforts but by the grace of Lord Sivananda.
These are some of the great miracles that actually happened in my life. They bear a very deep effect on my soul. I have my deep faith in my Sivananda of Ananda Kutir. My suggestion to my friends and well-wishers will only be to keep immense faith in Siva of Ananda Kutir. Read his literature over and over again. It is immensely simple. Even a child can read and follow his grand truths. You must find the reality even now. His books are his precious gifts. He gives them with immense love and sincerity. Read his books over and over again and pass them on to your immediate friends and relations who can benefit by them. Do never hoard them. I have my personal experience that by passing them on to others many people have mended themselves and changed their mode of life itself. My advice to all my friends is, “spread the gospel of Siva, do not be selfish and narrow-minded. He is the Guru of the entire world. Everyone has to share his teachings. All these we can do only if we create more and more opportunities for others to come into his fold and his service”. I conclude with the wish that many more miracles of such kind will ever happen; they will exist and give real solace to our stricken hearts at all times.
Swami Sivananda—the Miracle-Worker
(Col. A.N.S. Murthy)
Many have known the life of Swami Sivananda, of his birth, of his early education, of his services as doctor in Malaya, his return to India and of his subsequent Tapasya for Self-realisation at Rishikesh. Many also know how after realising the Self, he has been propagating and reviving the religion and philosophy of this ancient land through his many books, letters, speeches and through his all-India tour but, few know of the many miracles he has been working.
Yes, miracles such as the healing of the sick and feeding of the poor, if one would have them that way. True, these are not the magic variety such as one generally associates with the word miracle. His hospitals and assistants to attend the sick, his ‘Langar’ and ‘Sadhus’ to cook and feed about two hundred pilgrims a day, his large establishment for printing and distributing his many books are, perhaps, like other similar institutions.
In a previous article published in the Birthday Number of ‘The Divine Life’ in 1951, while attempting an analytical study of this anchorite of Ananda Kutir, I had expressed my wonder how the Swamiji could manage to keep going his many enterprises enumerated in that article, everyone of which require money, and yet more money. That wonder still persists. However, it is not this side of his miracle-working I have now in mind.
Miracles such as making five thousand loaves out of five, or making a fig-tree either have long ceased to surprise me. We in India have often associated such acts with magic. The former is of a low category attributed to magicians who can invoke evil spirits, while the latter is attributed to spiritual aspirants who enamoured of a few powers that come their way in their upward climb to Godhead stop at that particular rung of the ladder, and remain content with the cheap popularity that the display of their Yogic powers brings. Nevertheless India regards these as but magicians although of the “white variety”.
Him alone who, regardless of such way-side powers marches on to the ultimate goal of God-realisation does India and Eternity adore as the Sage of sages. All others are regarded as aspirants fallen on the way and therefore not full-fledged. Swami Sivananda is of the former order and belongs to a long line of Self-realised, selfless souls such as Sri Sankaracharya, Swami Dayananda, Swami Vivekananda and others. These souls having realised themselves have thought fit not to work miracles of the cheap variety but the miracle of the highest order—miracle of changing man himself. How Sri Sankaracharya, Swami Dayananda, Swami Vivekananda, by the example of their lives, through their writings and speeches had changed the life of many millions is recorded history. Likewise, Swami Sivananda’s life, his books, his letters and his speeches have brought miracles in the life of many. Many who had wandered from the right path, after hearing his clarion call, have chosen to follow him.
He has been able to attract to his humble abode at Ananda Kutir men of all classes. The rich and the poor, the princes and the peasants, the sinners and the saints, from the South and the North, from our nearest neighbour Ceylon and from far off Finland have all gone to him and have come back inspired, changed, resolute to follow his teachings and lead a moral, spiritual life, the life that shall lead to Self-realisation.
Men who have never been associated with religion have succumbed to his call. Military officers of the rank of Generals and Brigadiers have gone to him and come back as confirmed religionists. Many have resolved to touch never more meat or alcohol in any form.
So have many in far-off lands taken enthusiastically to his teachings. His extraordinary influence is not restricted to his personal contact. His writings and letters have had the same influence as his personal contact and those that have read them have not only taken to a better life but have also helped others to do likewise. Thus have sprung in many parts of the world his Yoga centres of classes, although he has not left the shores of India, so far, on any preaching mission.
Let the witnesses themselves speak. Here they are: Mr. Harry Dickman of New York: “The most merciful Sivanandaji has offered free his deep knowledge. He has sent advices to many European Sadhakas. He has given instructions to various students in Europe as how to remove the diseases of the body, mind and soul. It is a Wonder of wonders how Siva can accomplish this especially if one remembers that he has great many followers in India, that he writes in many Indian monthly and weekly papers. We here simply wonder how it is humanly possible to write so many books, to train students in all directions, to conduct Kirtans and public lectures and to serve the sick and the poor. Yes, the world needs Siddha Jnanis and Siva is such a one”.
Mr. Hussain Kazimedeh Iranshahr, Professor, Zurich University: “Swami Sivananda is not only the soul of The Divine Life Society but also a guiding light of the whole of humanity. This great world-reformer, dynamic, social and scientific worker, religious and modern thinker, philosopher, author, orator and poet is doing to the whole world an infinite service”.
Mrs. Liliane Samash of California: “His good thoughts and goodwill protect me and take away all evil thoughts of the mind and destroy all Karmas and strengthen my will”.
Mr. C.E. Diem of Australia: “Swamiji’s teachings warm up the hearts of countless lonely people and give them new hope. I have presented his books and conveyed his teachings here, in Australia, to many friends and have no doubt that finally this dissemination of spiritual knowledge will bring the people closer and land them towards the final realisation that we are really one and therefore should treat each other as we would like to treat ourselves including even our dumb brethren, the animals”.
These are but four representative letters from many thousands of similar ones that Swamiji continues to receive from all over the world. In addition, this writer happens to know quite a few who were bad characters till they came to Swamiji and as a result of his contact have chosen the path of the spiritual aspirant.
Is not changing man’s life to godly ways the highest of miracles? Is it not, therefore, that sages throughout the ages have sought to bring man to the righteous path?
Was it the aim of Jesus to make men walk on the waters? Was it the aim of Zoroaster to make his followers to walk through fire? Their one great desire was to turn men towards God, to make them live as their Creator intended. The great sages know that changes here and changes there, change of governments or change of position, the giving of little wealth here or a little happiness there was but a very superficial way of treating the evils of the world and, therefore, they sought to change the root of all evils—the heart of man. They know that unless man is changed no amount of other changes can bring peace and goodwill on earth.
Swami Sivananda has been flooding the land with his ‘Jnana’ and beckoning all to take to divine life. That many have answered and are answering his call is what I consider a Miracle of miracles, particularly in these days when the world is almost mad with ideas of war and hatred and various kinds of materialistic crazes.
Miracles Of Guru-Bhagavan
(Sri Satchidananda Prasad Sinha)
You may believe it or not, to me Gurudev is really a living God. He is omnipresent, omnipotent and omniscient. Only a year has passed since I have come to his divine lotus-feet and I cannot check my temptations of putting here in black and white a few of my experiences of this short period.
I cannot forget the memorable day when the Lord’s grace bloomed over me for the first time. It was the 8th September, 1957. A friend of mine instigated me to accompany him to the place where Gurudev’s 71st birthday was being celebrated. I had never seen Gurudev before, nor had heard anything about The Divine Life Society, but felt that, as though through an unknown spirit, I was compelled to participate in the programme. I performed Pada-Puja to his image and participated in the illuminating speeches given by his devotees. There I learnt that our Gurudev was a living God.
I was very much inspired by the speeches delivered on that occasion. I constantly meditated upon the whole event. My heart ached to have a Darshan of the God. I had no sound sleep. I always thought about the plan as to how I shall be able to go to Rishikesh and have Darshan of Him. At last the favour of Gurudev descended upon me and I had an opportunity to visit Rishikesh during the Pooja holidays. I was overwhelmed with joy when I put my head over the lotus-feet of Bhagavan, I forgot all about my existence and felt I was in heaven. I received his divine blessings and came back to Patna felt staying in the Ashram for 24 hours only.
Once in a cold winter morning in February 1958 a friend of mine who lives adjacent to my quarters came to me in a perturbed state of mind and told me that his only grandson was having high temperature. The child was only two and half months old. I at once went with him and found that the temperature was 105 degrees. The condition of the boy was precarious. I was visibly moved and sent for a doctor. I took out my Mala, closed the eyes and began to chant the Mahamrityunjaya Mantra. I meditated upon Sri Guru-Bhagavan who is the Doctor of doctors. I prayed for his mercy and blessings.
To my utter surprise I saw Guru-Bhagavan wearing a long warm coat and a walking stick in one hand. He took the child in his lap and intimated me that the child would be all right in a short time and then left the place. When I opened my eyes, I knew I had sat there for half an hour. I took the temperature again; it was 103 degrees and the child was returning to normal. In the evening the child was completely all right. This is Gurukripa. He does not like to see his devotees in trouble. He is always by his side, who totally surrenders to him.
On another occasion again I troubled my Bhagavan. Whenever I feel hopeless I seek his favour and cling to his feet and receive his divine mercy without loss of time. It was in the month of May, 1958. I had to go to my father-in-law’s house with my wife to attend a marriage ceremony. I had to reach an interior village of Muzaffarpur district in North Bihar. The road was motorable but on reaching Muzaffarpur town I came to learn that due to heavy rains about ten miles of the road had been badly damaged and motor buses could not pass. As I had to reach my destination that very night I engaged a bullock cart; but people warned me not to proceed as there was likelihood of dacoits attacking us en route. I had firm faith in Guru-Bhagavan and I had no fear at all. I asked the cartman to proceed further. It was a moonlit night and the sky was very clear. I began to chant the Mahamrityunjaya Mantra with faith and devotion. When we reached the danger zone I saw two white bulls coming from either direction. I saw Guru-Bhagavan with Trisul in his hands riding on the two bulls. Tears of devotion rolled down my cheeks and my throat and voice choked. The bulls followed us for about three miles. When we reached a safe place they vanished all of a sudden.
People may believe the above statements or not but I have felt them myself. For me they are nothing but his kindness. I have received several letters from him containing instructions and guidance and I feel his presence always by my side. I always pray for his divine mercy and pray that he may live long.
Miracles Of My Master
Since the days of yore, the general masses in all countries have associated religion with miracles. Even today there are persons everywhere who would seek the help of priests, Sannyasins and Yogis for the cure of their various ills. This practice is common not only among the unsophisticated but is prevalent in the educated classes also. Even those who are proud of their rational bent of mind are occasionally forced to beseech aid from the supernatural sources, as a last resort, when all other efforts prove abortive. Some persons even go to the Himalayas in search of Yogis and Mahatmas who could effect miracles and return disappointed when they do not find any who is in a position to answer their expectations.
But many in this country have little knowledge of our Shivanandanagar, a place of miracles, where the miracle-master Swami Sivananda lives. If one has got the requisite faith in him and purity of heart and one is able to effect absolute self-dedication to the grace of Swamiji, he never fails to cure all the ills of life.
From my personal experiences I would quote some instances, when I have felt the power of his miracles just by remembering him and beseeching his help.
In 1948, we migrated from Sindh to the Indian Union. When I was travelling by train with my family, a magistrate of Pakistan appeared suddenly at Mirpurkhas station and ordered his men to take down my luggage for search. It was nothing but only an implied harassment and giving trouble with an evil intention, because we were allowed to entrain only after a thorough search at Hyderabad (Sindh). Observing the magistrate’s rude manners, I closed my eyes and prayed earnestly to my Sadguru Sri Swami Sivananda for help. Thereupon, unexpectedly a gentleman known to me appeared at the platform and managed to relieve me of the trouble of detention and I was allowed to travel by the same train.
Again, in the same year, while I was on my pilgrimage to the shrines of Kedarnath and Badrinath (which necessitates a trek of about 200 miles in the interior of the Himalayas) my right leg became acutely painful and swollen after I had covered only half the distance on foot. Therefore, I entered as an indoor patient in the civil hospital at Okhimath for treatment. I remained there for a full week, but there was no improvement. On the contrary, the doctor suggested an operation. I became very disappointed. Then I remembered my Sadguru Swami Sivananda and dropped him a postcard, seeking his blessings. It was to my surprise that the day he received my letter (at Ananda Kutir) improvement started and I could walk towards Badrinath very shortly, without having to undergo the operation. Thus I completed my sacred Yatra by the miracle of my Master.
In 1950, I attended the great Kumbha Festival along with my wife and daughter. On the Kumbha day when we were returning to our place of residence after the sacred bath at Har-ki-Pedi we were caught up in the tragedy of stampede due to uncontrollable surge of the moving pilgrims. Before our eyes we saw about thirty persons crushed to death. We all desperately remembered Sadguru Swami Sivananda at the moment of acute anxiety. Immediately stout ropes descended on us from above and we were hauled up in no time to the upper storey of a building by some merciful people as if by magic and were thus able to save our lives by the grace of Swamiji.
I was promoted as an Assistant Engineer in 1951. But I was reverted back in 1953 without any fault of my own, though my juniors were continuing as Assistant Engineers. I appealed but it brought no satisfactory result.
My friends advised me to approach Delhi and somehow try for reinstatement by hook or crook if necessary. But I did not like to employ unfair means and instead of wasting my money I was impelled as though by an inner urge, to donate Rs. 500/- towards the Moola Dhana Fund of the Visvanatha Mandir at Shivanandanagar and have a special prayer offered to the Lord. To my great wonder, I was soon reinstated as an Assistant Engineer and am still continuing in that post with the blessings of Swamiji Maharaj.
May the miracle-master of ours live for a very long time in our midst, so that he may alleviate our difficulties and guide us in the spiritual path.
Preceptor Of Miraculous Powers
(Sri Anwarul Hasan, Azamgarh)
It is obvious that a modern Guru must be an adept in the line of deep concentration and meditation so that he may be able to exert telepathic influence from a distance. Apart from being a specialist in the art of meditation he should possess the genius of adapting the literary medium for a full and total expression of his spiritual experiences.
Both these qualities are found in Swami Sivananda to a remarkable degree. Swamiji has revealed the nature of the Sadhana which he himself did before he undertook the sacred mission of dissemination of spiritual knowledge.
It is because of his extraordinary power of concentration that the disciples of Swamiji get spiritual experiences like the one noted below.
“Whenever I do Pranayama, Swamiji’s picture appears before me and I feel as if I were drawing spiritual strength from him...Very often now in my meditation I see Swamiji and a wave of joy and peace comes over me. I feel irresistibly drawn to concentrate on him.”
—Mrs. Gaby Gritsch, Berlin.
Swamiji is the only modern sage who combines in himself the two essentials of a modern Guru. Some other famous Yogis had Bhakti or Atma-Vichara as their personal Sadhana. Swamiji is the only Yogi who adopted deep meditation as his inner Sadhana although he is a master of all Yogas, and preaches the path of synthesis.
Following are a few of the instances of Swamiji’s powers of spiritual telepathy from a distance which have been testified by devotees from various places. Sivananda has got the power to inspire his disciples through dreams.
Sri M.R. Sibal of Hyderabad writes: “I am getting regular lessons on Yoga and philosophy from your august self in my dreams.
“I am myself quite ignorant of Yoga but you have given me some power by giving me your Darshan in my dreams.”
Sri Marie Milkova, Vancouver: “I came to know Swami Sivananda through a dream. It was a strange dream. I saw his name and learnt how to get in touch with him. Swami Sivananda has got the power to cause his disciples and devotees to have vision of himself while one is awake though living at a great distance from him.”
Sri Venkatasubbiah, Hussur: “During the Sadhana Week programme in 1940, there was Akhanda Kirtan in our Branch of The Divine Life Society. My daughter aged 22 years saw Sri Swami Sivanandaji standing on the dais robed in ochre cloth and with Kamandalu in hand next to his own photo. This vision lasted for nearly five minutes.”
Sri Valiram Hardasmal, Hyderabad: “I actually saw His Holiness coming to me relieving me of my distress.”
Sri Rangaswamy Iyengar, Madurai: “When I sat for meditation in the morning, I saw Swamiji standing in front of me. He blessed me and vanished.”
Sri Howard William, England: “I visited Dr. Hari Prasad Shastri in London. He served me a simple meal of Prasad. In that Prasad you were present. I actually saw you in it.”
Sri Gita Margarita, Geneva: “At the midnight mass in the Theosophical Church, it was not an illusion, I really saw you sitting before the cross on the altar in all your loveliness and splendour and childlike purity. Sometimes there is a peculiarly intense feeling of your presence in my mind without any definite vision.”
A remarkable instance of Sri Sivanandaji’s powers in this connection is that of Frau Charlotte Walinski Heller of Germany, who for the past one year has heard a mysterious voice urging her to come to India and learn Yoga under Swami Sivananda. Eventually she visited India and stayed at the Sivananda Ashram for some months.
In conclusion I want to suggest how to have close communion with the Guru. Have perfect intellectual harmony with the Master, by a deep study of his books. Follow his teachings with faith and devotion. Be persistent with your efforts. Have absolute trust in your Guru. Treat him as you would treat God Himself.
It is needless to say that a Sadhaka by meditating on the form of his Guru with a pure mind and intense concentration can make himself receptive to the flow of the latter’s divine grace.
I am sure if any aspirant sincerely approaches Swamiji for spiritual guidance and blessings and follows his teachings with faith and perseverance he is certain to notice significant progress within a short time. May Swami Sivananda live long.
(Sri H.N. Ramakrishnaiah, Bangalore)
On 12th February 1956, at night, while I was sleeping on a cot I heard some sound, as though someone was tapping my cot. I took it to be the noise produced by rats. But after a few minutes somebody called me through the window. I thought that the milkman had come and immediately I got up from the bed and opened the door. I could not see anyone outside. I therefore closed the door and again went to bed as it was only 3.15 a.m. at that time. Shortly afterwards I again heard a noise and I thought that a burglar might have come and with great courage I just peeped through the window. I saw a light and with that light I also saw Swami Sivananda. He called me and when I opened the door with full anxiety Swamiji’s figure vanished. So I determined that I must see Swamiji at his Ashram. I left for Rishikesh on the 25th February and had Swamiji’s Darshan on 29th February.
Miraculous Healing Grace
(Sri Thomas Brown, England)
On this, the 71st birthday celebration of our Divine Guruji Sivananda, may I, one of the humblest Chelas in the far flung frontier of his ‘Empire’ send my best wishes and sincere prayers that we may have the joy of these celebrations for many years to come.
Long I had prayed to Bhagavan, where could I find a Guruji to guide me on the path of Dharma, and then when I was lying in hospital with health lost, career ruined and all the things that make for a comfortable material existence, scattered to the winds, then Bhagavan gave His greatest treasure, our Sivanandaji.
How can I express in words the kindness of Guruji, the flood of books, the kind letters of comfort when they were most needed!
Not only spiritual comfort has this wonderful God-man sent, but I have also been the recipient of his miraculous healing grace during the period of my illness with a dramatic cure which puzzled the doctors attending on me.
May be I shall never know the joy of our Sivananda’s Darshan like those blessed ones who are fortunate enough to reside in Rishikesh, but he dwells ever in my heart even though I am often unworthy of his grace.
We, the outposts of our Guruji’s domain, can only show our love for him by ever performing Seva in his name, that even those who are not fortunate enough to know his greatness and grace may ever come to associate Sivananda with everything that uplifts and leads to God and the truly Divine Life.
May the Blessed Lord make us worthy of Him.
Miraculous Experiences Of Swami Sivananda’s Grace
(Sri Dhanam South Africa)
My father-in-law was a follower of Cuddapah Satchidananda Swamiji. I used to watch him pray and practise Yoga and was myself longing for a Guru. One day in 1947, I was bitterly crying at night. That same night I had a dream. The Cuddapah Swamiji appeared before me in the dream and said: “I am not your Guru; your Guru will come into your life in due course.” The Guru’s form appeared before me and said, “Open the chest of drawers in your father-in-law’s room; see what is waiting for you there.” Next morning I opened that very chest of drawers that I had seen in the dream and took out the ‘Sivananda Diamond Jubilee Commemoration Volume’. The moment I joyously took that book in my hand and opened it the very same radiant face of my Guru—Sri Swamiji Maharaj—shone from the pages of that book.
Soon after this miraculous experience, I wrote to Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj. Two weeks later, once again I had Siva’s vision; he appeared in his dazzling form with flowing robes. In that vision, he gave me a book to study. The very next morning the postman brought me the very book, sent by Siva.
The next day I had another vision and Siva appeared. I saw myself in the Ashram at Rishikesh. The flowing Ganga, the towering Himalayas, the peaceful surroundings and the blissful Ashram—I saw them all in the vision. I fell at Siva’s feet and begged, “Not only in this birth, but in all my future births, O Lord, you must be my Guru.” Siva initiated me into the Mantra and assured me: “I am your blessed Guru and I am ever with you.” Since then, I must say, that Siva has been always with me protecting me from dangers and guiding me to the Goal. Every day of my life since then has been one of a round of miraculous experiences; and I shall set forth here only a few of them.
Once again I found myself in Ananda Kutir in a vision and sat underneath the same tree as I had done in the previous vision. This time Siva gave me a message to the people of South Africa and uttered the two significant words: “Detach-Attach”. I had never before heard these words from the lips of anyone. A week later, I got a pamphlet from the Ashram and as I opened it, I found these very words—Detach-Attach.
One day I was fasting. Towards the evening I felt a little weak and I had just dozed a little. In a moment Siva was there encircled by a blue dazzling light. It appeared as though the roof of the house had disappeared and through that opening Siva descended into the house. I touched his feet in humble devotion. He blessed me. In sheer joy I screamed. Hearing this my mother ran into the room. She too saw the dazzling blue light though she did not see Siva’s form. I know that the vision was something very very real and not my imagination.
I began receiving Siva’s Prasad—the sacred ashes every month. I preserved them with great faith and devotion. Into the mouth of every dying creature I used to put a pinch of those ashes in the firm belief that this would secure for them a better birth next time.
My pet dog that I loved dearly—especially because in the afternoons I had to live alone in the house—was found dead one day. I sat by the dog and started repeating the Mahamrityunjaya Mantra. I wrapped the dog in a piece of cloth so that flies and other insects would not sit on its body and its mouth from which froth had already come out. I went into the house and got a little bit of milk into which I put a pinch of the sacred ashes. I repeated Siva’s name thrice and put a drop of that milk into the dog’s mouth. I wept and cried aloud for Swamiji’s grace. I said: “Swamiji, you have divine powers; you can do anything. If you like you can bring this dog back to life.” I repeated the Mahamrityunjaya Mantra again. Then I went to the bedroom to telephone somebody. As I was standing there at the telephone suddenly I found someone tucking at my saree. Who do you think I saw behind me? The dog: all wrapped up in the yellow cloth I had tied round it. It had come back to life. Siva’s Name and His Grace had brought it back from the abode of Yama in order to convince me of the supreme glory of his divine grace. The little dog was full of joy and it went to the prayer-room and sat near Gurudev’s photograph. It refused to drink milk and play with the other pups. What cannot my Gurudeva do? Next day at home and at The Divine Life Society, Durban, I conducted prayers to Siva.
Recently I had incurable warts on both my hands. I tried many doctors and various medicines but in vain. One day Br. Srinivasan asked me to pray for help. I willingly placed my hands before Gurudev’s photograph and after a couple of days the warts completely disappeared. I have not had them since.
Another mysterious thing happened one day. I was doing my usual Suryanamaskar on the terrace. I saw a divine being emerge from the Sun and warn me: “Go into the kitchen at once.” I first thought it was a temptation and I should not listen to the voice. But this warning was repeated. Then at last I went into the kitchen. As I was entering the kitchen I saw a man putting something—most probably some poison—into the cup of the milk. I did not drink it and so I was saved from death.
With all this the crowning miracle of my life would always be the Visva-Rupa of Swamiji I saw three years ago. I saw the magnificent universal form of Siva—the universal being, and in his mouth I saw the entire universe. The vision gave me inexpressible bliss and great peace.
I have often wondered if for my little devotion Siva could do so much, what a great blessing it would be if we completely surrendered ourselves to him, recognising that he is truly God incarnate and dedicated ourselves to his service; birth after birth.
Siva has given me life. Siva is my God. Siva is all in all for me. How then can I sing his glories!If earth be a scroll
And ocean be an inkstand;
If trees be the pens
And time itself the writer,
Even then Siva’s glories cannot be exhausted.
He is Jesus; he is Buddha; he is Rama; he is Krishna; he is Siva; and he himself is Devi. In him all the gods and goddesses have found their fulfilment. May the dust of his holy feet purify us, ennoble our lives and enlighten our souls. May he live for ever and ever and ever.
Blessings That Spelt Success
(Dr. D.K. Viswanathan)
I want to share with you an instance which has come my way demonstrating the grace of Siva. Sometimes back I solicited His blessing for the success of the negotiations that were being carried out for the future of the malaria organisation programme in Burma which affected the entire country with 20 million population. This reached such a delicate stage at the time that there was a fear that we might be denied an opportunity of being humble instruments of service to the people of that country, through its Government. In the last week of June when I arrived in Burma for discussions I expected Siva’s blessing before I had my first interview with the top officials. Not receiving His Grace in time I went with a laden heart for my meeting and the discussions were very gloomy. On my return to the place of residence I found Gurudev’s blessings in a cable couched in His inimitable language of kindness and encouragement. I expressed to friends that my mission, though it looked extremely gloomy with little prospect of success, had one great virtue in that it had Gurudev’s blessing. The clouds gradually disappeared. In a recent visit which I made to Burma, thanks to Gurudev’s blessing, the negotiations assumed a distinct turn for the better and we are now in great hopes of continuing what Swamiji has called “noble mission for the good of the people”. It is well recognised that international relationship is often determined at the last minute in quite an unexpected manner which will baffle rational and scientific explanation, but will offer no difficulty in understanding, if one realises that it is He that disposes whatever man proposes. In a like manner I have no illusions in my mind that the change that has taken place in the progress of our negotiations for malaria eradication in Burma can be attributed only to one factor according to me and that is Siva’s Grace and His infinite mercy for the entire mankind. Is this not a miracle?
Darshan Of Sivananda With Hridayananda
(Sri P. Seshadri, Devakottai)
On Adi Amavasya day Bhagavan Sri Swami Sivananda came to my hut with Hridayananda and enquired about myself and family. Overpowered with my devotion and overwhelmed with the happiness of meeting Bhagavan I immediately shouted for my wife’s name and for my daughters, Vasanta and Jayalakshmi, “Come on, see Bhagavan, get immediately Mangala Arati, prepare sweets, order for beautiful garlands and flowers for Pada Puja.” I started elaborate arrangements to invite Bhagavan. The Mangala Arati was performed. In the meantime Bhagavan with Hridayananda took His seat with the noble grace of a monarch. With devotional tears rolling in our eyes, we prostrated at Bhagavan’s holy lotus-feet with all reverence and devotion and washed His feet and worshipped them with Tulasi, lotus and roses. Bhagavan blessed us all with His affectionate smile and we had a Satsanga with Bhagavan for a long time and our state during that time was indescribable. A sense of deep peace and inner joy seemed to permeate the inner core of everyone and as if compelled by an irresistible and invisible power, most of us were in an unconscious state and enjoyed and Bhagavan expressed they were A-1 (excellent) and blessed all with His affectionate smile. We have seen the physical form of our Bhagavan in our hut. When I prayed for Japa Mala and Mrityunjaya Mantra, Bhagavan told Swami Hridayananda to send me a copy of the same and Japa Mala. Then Bhagavan took leave of us all with His affectionate smile and requested all of us to come to Ananda Kutir and stay for a week’s time. This is the miracle of our Bhagavan what we actually experienced. O Lord! Thou art the ocean of mercy. Bless us. Protect us without fail. Show us the right path and protect us. This is the only boon we want.
In my childhood my elders used to tell me inspiring stories about great saints and Bhaktas like Swami Akalkot Maharaj, Namdev, Tukaram, etc., whose photos we had in our Puja room. About Swami Akalkot being bodily visible to his disciples in various places while he was living in his place was well impressed on me and I wondered at the mysteries of great saints. But now I am having such experiences with my Gurudev Sri Swami Sivananda, who has been visible to me at my residence while he has been living in Ananda Kutir in Shivanandanagar in the Himalayas.
Soon after the death of my mother who was a constant companion to me till then, I was posted to a city hospital by the grace of God as the R.M.O. which kept me busy all the hours except a few in the night for sleep; and thus I had no occasion to feel lonely. It was during this time that I came to know of my Gurudev through some of his books which were presented to me by someone for some selfless service done. After one year only I could get leave to go to his Holy Feet and have his Darshan and return with his blessings as his disciple.
I got a transfer order to a mofussil after three and half years service in this hospital. This worried me as to how I could go alone and live in a private house as there were no quarters attached to the hospital. That evening I was sitting and gazing at Sri Gurudev’s photo which was before me, thinking about my transfer. Suddenly I heard a familiar voice calling me as “Doctor, Doctor,” from the front verandah. I was sitting in the back side hall where I used to be day and night and receive memos from the hospital from the back door which was nearest to the delivery room. I went to the front hall and opened the door where I saw my Revered Gurudev with his walking stick in his hand and a Divine Smile on his face coming towards the door and entering the hall. I prostrated at his Holy feet with great reverence and joy and recollected this sweet voice calling me as “Doctor, Doctor,” a few seconds ago. When I stood up there was no one before me and so I went and looked for him in the side room hurriedly. I closed the door and went and sat in my usual place and meditated on Gurudev. From that moment I became courageous about my transfer and since then I always feel his divine presence near me.
My second visit to Sivanandashram was six years after the first as I could not get long leave due to service exigencies. After 7 days’ travelling by train and bus I reached the Ashram one fine morning and came to know that I would be able to have Gurudev’s Darshan only next morning when he was to return from Roorkee after a short stay there for a change after his long illness. I was much disappointed and depressed and so sat down in the Kutir and determined not to have bath or food before having his Darshan. I closed my eyes as tears began to flow and I wanted to hide them from my sister who was with me. In a few minutes I saw a bright light like lightning in the Kutir and Sri Gurudev standing before me. I stood up and prostrated at his holy feet and before I could call my sister he disappeared. I went out of the Kutir and looked for him and asked my sister whether she had seen Sri Gurudev getting in or out of the Kutir. She said ‘no,’ and it was a fact that he was at Roorkee at that time and returned only next morning to the Ashram. Such experiences have revealed to me that mysteries of great saints which I used to think in my childhood as wonders are possible. Our Sri Gurudev is the Omnipresent Sri Krishna in this Yuga and is found to be a moving commentary of the Bhagavad-Gita. My humble prostrations at his Lotus-Feet. May his blessings be upon us all.
As I Saw My Master
(Sri Umakant Pd. Shukla, Hajipur)
...The unbelievers may laugh but I would narrate, without any hesitation, some extraordinary miracles of His Holiness Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj which I experienced.
In May, 1950 my elder brother Sri Lakshmi Kant Shukla was confined to bed. He had kidney and some complicated maladies. One day his condition became very serious and alarming. He was in a coma and was quite unconscious. Despite the best treatment available here he was sinking. His case was declared hopeless and we all lost hope of his precious life. We were weeping bitterly. In the meantime, I remembered His Holiness Sri Swamiji Maharaj and prayed to him to save the life of my brother. Fortunately my prayer was responded and within a few hours and before the arrival of Patna’s doctor, my brother, who was hovering between life and death, regained consciousness. My brother told us after regaining consciousness that he dreamt that Swamiji Maharaj was standing near him keeping his hand on his head and after seeing the vivid dream he at once woke up with the feeling of elation. Thus by the blessings of His Holiness Sri Swamiji Maharaj, my brother was completely cured.
In July, 1951 when I visited the holy Ananda Kutir, along with Sri Dhirendranath Shukla, on our return journey from Kedar-Badri Yatra, I received a letter from my house about some domestic troubles and perplexing problems. After perusing the letter I at once approached Swamiji Maharaj and prayed to him for his blessings so that I may get rid of the troubles. Sri Swamiji Maharaj called me with his usual smiling face and said nothing. But, to my great surprise when I reached home after a week I was told by my people that the matters which were causing so much anxiety and annoyance to them had disappeared only a few days before. This was all Gurudev’s Grace.
Truly speaking, when I got any trouble, I at once used to pray to Swamiji Maharaj for his blessings and divinity, and I became free from the trouble. But now I think that we should not pray for ordinary worldly things. Prayer should only be made for tranquillity, peace, divine consciousness, devotion for God and Guru-Bhakti by attaining which nothing more is needed.
May he live long to uplift the world in general and to guide and bless his devotees in particular.
Siva Appears In Geneva
My heart is filled with you. Overwhelmed am I by your kindness. I bathe in a stream of bliss.
Miracles still happen. The Miracle of miracles, you are. You know how to make us happy. Happiness permeates me. I feel saintliness by your blessings. There is Light everywhere.
What a happy and profound enlightened Christmas it was, as never before it was. There was your close contact. There was oneness with you.
It seemed wonder upon a wonder: a letter just for the evening of the 24th, a divine telegram from Himalayas for Christmas morning, a letter in the afternoon and again a letter the next day, with your beautiful photos.
Nobody was so blessed on this Christmas! Here was really the centre of your light just at the moment of the greatest crisis in Europe and danger of a new war.
Your Christmas message was sent to all countries and distributed by Jew spiritualists, Theosophists; is it not wonderful! Theosophists called me “You are Beasant.” This made me very happy. Others ask me to give a lecture about you!
At the midnight mass in the church it was not an illusion but really I saw you seated before the cross on the altar in all your loveliness and splendour and childlike purity. I felt a need to sacrifice.
Now I am ill and writing you from my bed. Your prayers saved me. When you conduct prayers for me the effects are tremendous.
How Sivananda Appeared Before Me
(Sri Laxmi Kumari, Bettaiah)
This morning at about 8 a.m., in the place of worship the thought of ‘Swamiji’s All-India tour commencing from today’ flashed upon my mind. I imagined how Swamiji would be marching followed by his Mandali and how unfortunate I was not able to be present on that occasion. When I was deeply absorbed in pondering over these thoughts turning my face northward, I at once felt that someone was coming to me from the western side. Looking towards the west, a wonderful scene appeared before me. Swamiji was coming slowly and stood up in front of me. Being overjoyed I could not speak at all. Never had I presumed that Swamiji would come to accept Puja from an unworthy creature like myself.
The next mysterious event that took place was that when I bowed my head for Puja I found his form changing from his own to that of Sri Krishna. I did Abhisheka to Swamiji’s holy feet. I was in tears due to the excessive joy for Swamiji’s Darshan. My intense desire was a great blessing on me. I partook of the holy water of his feet with all the members of my family and still preserved a little.
All these happened as a result of carrying out Swamiji’s instructions regularly. Sinful and vicious can also attain Moksha by following the admonitions of Swamiji and obtain liberation from miseries.
Guru As Omnipresent God
(Sri Sivananda-Sarada, Germany)
From an invisible source, I heard a voice in my room. That experience began my contact with the mighty Yogi of India, of the Himalayas. And this was not all.
For, on the Christmas of the year 1951, the Yogi Sivananda granted me the strange experience of his vision. I saw the Indian Yogi as clearly, as vividly, as palpably as I see now his picture facing my writing table. Not even a fortnight passed by after this experience. I was handed by my husband a cover from the Yoga-Vedanta Forest University of the Himalayan Yogi.
The cover brought me a small autographed photograph of the Master. This picture has become my life’s companion; whatever I do and wherever I go it accompanies me. My contact with the Master strengthened itself as much in thought and spirit as through my correspondence with the Yogi. My interest in the Master grew and gathered strength. In thought and spirit I experienced the communion with the Divine Presence of the Master everywhere. For full three years I was trained invisibly from a distance of five thousand miles, until I was taken to his holy Ashram in India where I saw the Yogi in flesh and blood.
At the Ashram I felt quite at home and was always in touch with the Divine Presence of the Master, whether I was in his immediate physical proximity or not. For, the Master is to me an omnipresent being. Everything in the Ashram powerfully suggested to me his Divine Presence. In the limpid waters of the Ganga, in the majestic mountains environing the Ashram, in the colourfully attired visitors who came to see, adore and receive a new life from the Master—in all these I saw Sivananda.
Everyone at the Ashram including myself was very happy. I used to sit close to the Master and observe how deeply absorbed he was in the rapturous meditative moods and yet to all appearances engage himself in dozens of works at the same time. Nothing escaped his eyes and ears and hands and yet he observed in a deep meditation on his own inner spiritual Self. My personal experiences with the Divine Master have proved to me that he is a great Sage, a Yogi, a mystic, the prophet of the new age.
The physical presence of the Master was as wonderful as is his invisible presence. The Master poured into me happiness and peace. I am happy because I am endowed by the Master with a knowledge of real happiness. Sivananda is the universal Master who is surrounded and adored by everybody.
To come in contact with the disciples and devotees of Sivananda is a matter of inexhaustible joy for me. No disciple of the great Yogi remains without receiving in hundred ways the richest blessing and grace of the Master. At the right time the help of the Master somehow comes to us. His Divine Presence always protects and guides us. I am absolutely certain that a Guru like Swami Sivananda is always with his disciples, wherever they be. What counts with the Master is our contact with him in thought and spirit. All that a disciple of the Master is to do is to put aside his own egoistic nature and be receptive to the flow of the Grace of the Master. The Master has his own special methods of testing the disciples. Every disciple at the Ashram has implicit faith in the Master; they willingly surrender themselves to the Master. The Yogi and mystic Sivananda will always guide and help me. The Master’s Ashram in Rishikesh has become my inner world; it provides me spiritual nourishment and shelter. May the Divine Master enlighten and bless all.
Siva Appears In A Vision
(A German Devotee’s Spiritual Experiences)
The aeroplane, radio and television have brought us very near the superphysical plane in which the ancient Yogis of India roamed at will. In their case however the intricate machinery that makes flight in the air possible and that enables us to catch the sound or light-waves that float in the air, was available within themselves.
We have often read in the lives of the great Yogis of the past that they were able to perform miracles. In the life of Lord Jesus (whose Birthday we celebrated last week) we read that he was able to do what was considered impossible.
It is not a legendary belief or a blind faith or the credulous rustic. But it is even a fact even today that by an inner process of training the vital power in man and his mind, he can acquire such a command over the elements that he can bring about phenomena that would astound even the scientist who is familiar with the mechanism of the atomic bomb, the rocket and the television. The mysterious vision that Frau Charlotte Walinski-Heller saw and the Voice that she heard have brought this ancient truth again to the forefront.
During the course of an interview when journalists asked her a number of searching questions Frau Walinski declared that she had actually seen the greatest Yogi Sri Swami Sivananda in a vivid vision on Christmas eve in 1951. Even today she recalls that ecstatic experience with an inner joy and obvious reverence that is well portrayed on her face which assumes a natural expression of glowing happiness as she describes the great experience. It was that mystic experience that has revolutionised her life to the divine life cause.
Notwithstanding her Western upbringing and education she is implicit in her faith and explicit in her conviction that this Yogi who had thus revolutionised her life “is a very near incarnation of God if not God Himself and if the fact that he is God militates against the prevailing notions of God and His Incarnation.”
Frau Walinski who has led the normal life of a pious Catholic all her fifty years of life is a well-educated intelligent German lady and is certain that she is intellectually too strong to be influenced psychically. She has wonderful business acumen and has had an eventful career as an executive in a publishing house. Her husband is a police official and they have two sons. The children have inherited the piety of the parents and have perhaps been greatly influenced by their mother’s spiritual experience during the past few years. One of her sons has, after she left for India, written to Sri Swami Sivanandaji to accept him as Gurudev’s monk disciple; the younger son is in the words of Frau Walinski a great spiritual child who knows all the messages that she has received from Siva.
Throughout the past few years this pious family had been practically guided in their day-to-day life by Gurudev in a mysterious manner. “Every morning Siva wakes me up”, says Mrs. Walinski. “He has solved many difficulties in our life. And I am sure that he will work through me in the future and help me serve humanity.”
What is most significant is the fact that the Voice often corroborated by Gurudev’s own letters has invariably urged her to work, work. “Work in the home as a wife and mother. Work in the office and do your duty, and serve humanity too in the manner you best can,” has been the invariable command. And Frau has implicitly obeyed working throughout the day at home and in the office and till late into the night on her own books and translations of Gurudev’s works in German.
In August this year she had a Vision in which Gurudev asked her, “Will you be a good disciple?” and she replied, “Yes.” Then the Voice commanded her to proceed to India. On the 7th August she saw the Vision, and on the 19th of September she received Gurudev’s letter whose contents had been revealed to her beforehand. She was convinced beyond doubt that her visions and the messages she had been receiving from the Voice were absolutely real. During the moments of her meditation arose an inward feeling in her that really and truly mankind is one family and the whole world is knit in one Supreme Spirit, and that the spiritually awakened can speak with one another across continents with the ease with which people talk to each other from two neighbouring rooms. When she had thus determined to come to India the problems were those of passage money and the husband’s reaction. “Siva said everything would be all right,” says Mrs. Walinski and in a few days a good friend turned up who said he would finance the trip and her husband voluntarily came forward to do all he could to materialise her spiritual ambition. So she is in India at the feet of the master.
Soon after her arrival Gurudev gave her Mantra-Diksha and she attends all the Satsangas at the Ashram. She likes to sit at Gurudev’s feet in Indian fashion and refuses to occupy a chair. From the next day of her arrival at the Ashram she dresses herself in a saree. The ease with which she has effected the change over makes one feel that she must have been an Indian in a past birth. Perhaps a disciple of Gurudev even then.
Frau Walinski is the author of a series of five books in German entitled “Holy Day for the Soul” which are being published by a German publisher.
An Entrancing Vision
(Sri Irmgard Kaupisch Von Heppert)
The vision that I had three days ago was thus and I had it after my meditation.
I met Swami Sivananda on a lonely mountainside. It seemed to be autumn. Around him there were sitting seven Swamis. In the middle was a mirror. On it was a dancing flame. Swami Sivananda got into the flame. Then the flame changed into water. I found myself in a big pool of water swimming around from right to left.
Then I got out following Swami Sivananda by another route. I went into another cave. There I saw twelve monks in meditation. Swami Sivananda entered this circle. Standing in the centre and lifting his arms he said: “Thus we join together, so that we might realise the Unity again”. I felt it was a sublime act. Then we were on the mountainside again.
Swami Sivananda always came to me with the smell of herbs. He gave me a stick with the two ends carved. “use it rightly”, said he and vanished.
Political pressure is rapidly bringing on a crisis. We would like to build a party of non-violent people on the Indian pattern. For this we need the direction and guidance of Swami Sivananda. We should get the necessary training and discipline in his Ashram.
Life-Transforming Miracles Of Swamiji
(Sri Swami Ambikananda)
Difficult indeed it is to know the inner activities of the sages who though seemingly silent and simple, work wonders in transforming the lives of men and women who put even a little faith in them and look up to them for help and solace. It is not to be believed by those who have never experienced it. But in reality the miracles performed by the sages are thousandfold greater than the so-called miracles of the miracle-mongers.
I already looked up to my Master as my Divine father and mother, but I was not so much aware of his life-transforming activities and dynamism of his sweet and silent grace. When I got a letter from my son regarding the benign influence of my Swami Sivananda, I was really struck with wonder. My son writes that when he got some books and magazines from Swamiji, he was so much charmed by them that he nearly lost the earthly consciousness and forgot to go to his office. He has been much drawn to Swamiji and he wants to come to him for his Darshan and for obtaining his grace. My son who had never had any chance before to study any spiritual books and to come into the contact of a sage, now has got sudden transformation in outlook and his ways by the grace of the Master. Glory to Sri Swamiji!
Another event still more wonderful has happened in the case of my younger sister. Her son was seriously ill and there was no hope of his recovery. Losing all her hopes in doctors, she at last looked up to Swamiji for help and grace. Firm grew her faith in Swamiji and she prayed to him alone for her child’s recovery, and lo! and her son recovered miraculously and is back in his school continuing his studies. Thus she is very happy and extremely thankful and beyond words grateful for all that Swamiji has done for her.
These events have taken place only recently. May we still more be acquainted with the strange grace of our Divine Master who is the very embodiment of God. Glory to Him!
(Sri N. Srinivasan, Madras)
On the 25th of September, 1955 I received two tins of Chyavanaprash as Gurudev’s Prasad. Since I was having very good health I thought Chyavanaprash was not necessary for me then. Just at that time Sri M. Subba Rao who is at present staying at the Ashram wanted Chyavanaprash and so I gave away the tins to him saying that it was Gurudev’s Prasad. The next day suddenly I felt very weak and had slight temperature also. I immediately realised my foolishness in not honouring my Gurudev’s wish and for having given away the most sacred Prasad without at least tasting it. I sat before Gurudev’s portrait and craved for his mercy and pardon. Lo, what a miracle! I received another parcel of two tins of Chyavanaprash within 4 days. Then I opened the tins and began using the same; all the other members of the house who have not been using it even if it was forced on them, now began to share with me and began to empty the tins within a week’s time. I was wondering what to do and when I was about to go to Sri Kuppuswamy of Brindavan Hotel for getting a tin, the postman brought me another parcel containing a big tin of Chyavanaprash and oil. I was simply amazed and dumb struck at that time. Just like waves in the ocean are coming one after another, my Gurudev’s Kripa and Karuna are pouring on me incessantly. Who in this world can surpass my Gurudev’s generosity? None at all.
On the night I arrived back in Madras from Tirumalai Hills, in my dream our Gurudev appeared twice. On the first occasion he came to the house in which I am staying and was chatting and cutting jokes with me for some time and disappeared. I woke up and prayed to God and went back to sleep. Again, Gurudev appeared and gave his Blessings. Suddenly I woke up with a thrill. That was also a Red Letter Day for me as it was the first occasion I experienced such a thrill.
What an inner peace I have got after receiving Gurudev’s letter! I cannot explain in a letter. In fact, the moment I wrote to Swami Venkatesananda about my difficulties, I had the vision of Gurudev and my delusion has vanished with lightning speed. I know that so long as I have Gurudev’s grace and blessings, no ills will approach me. Since I had proof that something was being done against me, I thought I could take some extra precautions and so I wrote to Swami Venkatesananda.
I have received with Gurudev’s blessings the priceless books ‘Sivananda Upanishad’ and ‘So Says Sivananda’. The latter I always have in my pocket for reference. It is no exaggeration if I say, that Gurudev is enshrined in my heart. All the 24 hours, during waking time and in my sleep I see Gurudev only and none else. My only prayer is that Gurudev should keep perfect health and live for another hundred years more.
(Sri L.N. Raman, Bangalore)
It was 1953. I had read a number of Sivananda’s works. My marriage was being talked about. I was not then prepared psychologically for marriage. I had not decided whether ‘to marry’ or ‘not to marry’. During the last quarter of 1953 in a dream I found myself swimming in Haridwar Channel. The force and current of water had taken me up to the brink of Brahmakund, a deep and dark well—all water having been suddenly evaporated and disappeared. With a great effort I restrained myself from falling into that dangerous well. Then suddenly from the back I heard from a distance a commanding voice exhorting me to ‘jump in’. I thought I am no fool yet to do just that. The voice came very near and said: “Jump in”. I looked around for the mysterious person commanding me like that. I saw at the mouth of the deep well in front of me, emitting light and glow all around the luminous bust of Bhagavan Sivananda. I was wonder-struck and astonished at him again commanding, “Raman, I say, you jump in”. My resistance collapsed, I jumped in. Swamiji’s vision vanished, light gone, and again darkness all round me and I am falling down into the deep well. Fear gripped me at the thought that I am going to be smashed the moment I dashed against the ground at the bottom. The bottom may be rocky with snakes, crocodiles or anything dangerous. And finally I dashed against the ground in a very violent manner. And lo! the ground was very soft and I woke up at once and I was on my bed. And I was full of light, thrill and joy. What was the significance of this dream, I thought. The idea struck me that it was Swamiji’s order that I must marry. I did not reveal the dream to anyone but the next morning I surprised them with my consent to marry.
Darshan Of Sri Gurudev
(Sri Sumant Prasad Trivedi)
This is the short description of the actual incidents which took place in my life. Swami Sivananda’s Darshan, Prasad and my spiritual experiences have been narrated here. Swami Sivanandaji converses with Madhu, my wife, in Hindi and dictates poems and songs in Gujarati.
It was the auspicious day of Vijaya Ekadasi, Tuesday, the 10th of February. The river is not far from my residence. On her way to the river Madhu saw some Sannyasi slowly proceeding towards her. When he was quite close to her, she recognised him.
He was nobody else than Swami Sivananda.
Swamiji: O girl, where are you going?
Madhu: Swamiji, I am going to the river for my bath.
Swamiji: Where do you stay? Who are you?
Madhu: I stay in that Housing Society. I am a Brahmin.
Swamiji: I am very thirsty. Will you kindly give me some water?
Madhu: Swamiji, you are coming only from the river.
Swamiji: No, I am not coming from the river. I am coming from a distant place. It is extremely hot. Please bring some water.
After saying this he spread the cloth on the sand and sat on it; gave one vessel to Madhu and asked her to bring water. Madhu went to the river and brought some water in it. She observed him and got convinced that this Sannyasi was Swami Sivananda himself.
Madhu: Swamiji, I brought water for you.
Swamiji opened his eyes and drank the water. Up to now Madhu was continuously staring at Swamiji. She now sat on the sand and prostrated before Swamiji. Swamiji raised his hands and blessed her.
Madhu: Swamiji, today is the holy day of Ekadasi. Please come to my house and take some fruits.
Swamiji: Child, not today. Sometime in future I will visit your house. Please go and have your bath.
Madhu was then in trance. After Swamiji had repeated the order twice or thrice she heard it and started for the river. After traversing a short distance she looked back; she saw Swamiji. But when she turned again Swamiji had disappeared.
ON the llth of February, 1952 Madhu was worshipping the photo of Sri Swamiji. Madhu asked her question to Swamiji’s photo: “Yesterday you blessed me but did not give any Mantra or Upadesh. I too could not ask you; I was surprised by your Darshan. Yesterday you blessed me that I would be happy and prosperous. But I could not know how.” She heard Swamiji’s laughter and heard the voice, “Yesterday it was I; I asked for water and blessed you.” He recited two lines from the Gita.
All of a sudden the doors of our room automatically opened and Swami Sivanandaji entered with a Sitar in his hand. Madhu prostrated and asked Swamiji, “How will I enjoy supreme bliss without Mantra-Diksha?” Swamiji said ‘Om Namah Sivaya’ thrice. Madhu repeated it. Swamiji blessed her and disappeared.
On the 10th of February, 1953 I was worshipping in my room. Madhu was cutting vegetables. All of a sudden some great divine being appeared before me and gave a message that Guru Maharaj would visit my house at 12 or 12.30 at noon, that I must be ready with all the materials for Puja. At 12.30 Madhu heard some sweet and melodious voice near her doors. The doors opened automatically and Gurudev entered with one of his disciples (a disciple who was with Swamiji in his Baroda tour). The disciple was singing, “Kindle the light of the house.” Both the Guru and disciple had Kamandalus in their hands. Sri Swamiji’s and Purna Purushottam Sri Sahajanandaji’s photos were placed there. Madhu lighted the lamp and prostrated before Swamiji and his disciple and requested him to have his meal there. She gave dates, sweets, fruits and milk to Swamiji. She asked Swamiji, “Will you please take Papad and potato curry?” On Guruji’s acceptance she performed Pada-Puja. She asked Swamiji, “Swamiji, will it do if I continue to worship Purna Purushottam Bhagavan Swami Sahajananda Maharaj?”
Swamiji: You are doing a good thing; I had also worshipped him. You have got here exactly the same kind of face, features and personality, etc., in this photo which we have in heaven, the Imperishable Abode. When Sahajananda took birth on this earth, I also was with him. My name was Nishkalanandaji. The poem which is written on that board is composed by me as Nishkalanandaji. I had been to the Imperishable Abode and according to the order of the Lord, I have come to this earth as Swami Sivananda. I have come here to preach the religion which has been established by Sri Purna Purushottam Bhagavan Sri Sahajananda Maharaj.
Madhu: Swamiji, thou art a Divine Being. You gave me a Darshan on the river in this divine form. How divine you are!
Swamiji: Am I divine! If you know it describe my divine form.
Madhu: I behold thee only one divine, Sivananda—Siva Brahma Vishnu thine.
Swamiji was extremely pleased. He told Madhu to ask for a boon. Madhu said, “I do not want anything. Only I pray that by your grace I and my husband both worship the Lord with unflinching devotion and faith. Please give me something as a token of your divine presence here.”
Swamiji: Why do you want something? I myself am always present in this photo.
Madhu: My husband has gone to the office; give me such Prasad or present as will convince him of your presence here.
Sri Satguruji gave one small beautiful stone carved idol and told: “This is Parvatiji. Worship Her. If you know Mother then naturally Father will be known to you.” Maharaj applied Kumkum to Parvatiji and left Kumkum mark of his two hands on the wall and instructed her to worship this mark also. Then he took out three Bilva leaves from a piece of cloth which was in his Kamandalu and instructed her to eat them. “At any time you require my help take the paper having the mark of my hands and remember me,” after saying this Swamiji and his disciple went out of the room asking Madhu to close her eyes. Then they disappeared.
On the 20th of February, 1953 Madhu heard Gurudev’s voice asking her if she desired to have more Bilva leaves.
Madhu replied, “As Swamiji wishes.”
On the 16th of March, 1953 at 12.30 in the night Madhu was sleeping in a house in Baroda. Satguru gave her Darshan and said that he had also come with her to Baroda. In the evening when she sang Bhajans he sat opposite her near the grinding-stone.
On the 16th of April fourteen Bilva leaves with the recitation of Mantras fell down. Gurudev dictated the poem ‘Sadho Bhajo Gurudev.’
On the 26th of May and on the 4th June Sri Gurudev gave her four Bilva leaves and two Bilva leaves respectively.
On the 23rd of June Gurudev gave actual Darshan and asked Madhu in English, “How are you?” Madhu replied: “Maharaj, I do not know English.” Gurudev laughed.
On 29th of September, 1954 at 10 o’clock Gurudev gave two pieces of sweets, Kumkum and one Bilva leaf. Madhu was singing God’s name and praying. When she opened her eyes after finishing the prayer she saw Prasad before her. Sri Gurudev had told her on the 8th of September itself, “I would have brought this Prasad for you before but due to extreme work I could not come to you earlier. Today it is the 8th of September for you.” Gurudev gave one small photo also with Prasad and said, “Give this Prasad tomorrow to Sri Shankerlalji between 8 and 9 in the morning and say that your Gurudev has sent this and ask from him Prasad of Purushottam Bhagavan.”
On the 30th of September Gurudev gave us two wooden sandals in Ahmedabad. Now all devotees of Swamiji worship Swamiji’s Padukas. Sri Gurudev predicted on that day that Madhu would get Samadhi and would realise.
In Baroda, on 25th of October, 1954, while worshipping Gurudev’s padukas we received sweets. Madhu got Samadhi and had Darshan of Swami Sivanandaji.
The Gentle Healer
(Sri Carl Lendle, Germany)
My attention was drawn to Swami Sivananda by an article about him written by Harry Dickman, which appeared in the ‘White Flag’, three years ago. Our son, who shortly after his birth, was stricken by paralysis, gave us great sorrow and grief. At this time of great distress, I wrote to the Swami, asking for his advice and help. I can never forget the soothing and comfortable letter he sent me. His kind words gave us courage and confidence to look forward with hope and optimism. The state of health of our son has considerably improved since the time we are in contact with the Swami. Our heart is full of joy and we thank him for the great help he is giving to us.
May the Lord Almighty protect and preserve this great Soul for many years to come, so that he may shed Light on our path and guide us.
How My Life Was Changed
(Sri N.S. Kalyanaraman, Bombay)
During my early age I was leading an irresponsible life and was a smoker and going for pictures often. About 4 years ago when Swamiji was on his All-India Tour, I happened to get Swamiji’s Darshan at Astika Samaj, Matunga, Bombay. I heard Swamiji’s lecture with great interest, especially the song, viz., “Do not smoke Govinda. Do not drink Govinda,” etc., and from that day onwards I made up my mind not to smoke, and not to be a slave to tobacco, and I do not feel like going for pictures and instead I recite the Nama of the Almighty, viz., ‘Om Namo Narayanaya’, as many times as possible, daily.
Further about a month back I had some serious liver complaint and was suffering a lot. One night to my surprise at about 1 O’clock I felt as if someone is advising me to lead a religious life. I took this instruction seriously and the next day I started doing the daily rites according to our ancestry, viz., Sandhyavandan, Suryanamaskar, Gayatri Japa, etc. After completing four days, dear Swamiji, my disease disappeared. It was really a surprise to me. I feel very pleasant both physically and mentally and hope that Lord Krishna will give me enough strength to do the daily Japas regularly.
(Sri N. Parasuram, Bombay)
Om. Pranams and prostrations to Sri Gurudev.
I was very much longing for Darshan of Sri Gurudev since a number of years. I am extremely glad that the day has come and I am before him. This is out of a sudden experience and a quick decision that I had taken immediately before my departure from Bombay.
I was regularly attending the lectures given by Sri Swami Vasantanandaji at Matunga, Bombay, though not from the very beginning. I had met once Swami Vasantanandaji at Sri G.V. Parameswaran’s house during the course of the lectures and also attended one Satsanga that took place at Warden Road, Bombay. On that day after Satsanga, Swami Vasantanandaji asked us (myself and Sri Parameswaran) to arrange for a series of lectures at Khar, the place where we stay. The next day after our return home I was fortunate enough to secure a place next to the road I stay (15th road) where a series of Tulasidas Ramayana was being conducted and that was to last upto 1st March, 1960. This premises was named as ‘Ananda Kutir’ and the owner’s name was Sri Anand. He was immensely pleased when I requested him for the premises. He was ready to keep the premises open for us and make full arrangements for the Gita lectures contemplated. I was overjoyed on hearing this and conveyed this news to Sri G.V. Parameswaran. Sri Parameswaran was unable to contact Sri Vasantanandaji on the telephone the next day as the same was out of order. So the next morning after ascertaining the Swamiji’s address I went there to report about the securing of the premises for the Gita lectures. But Swamiji said that she was proceeding to Rishikesh and hence asked for a postponement of lectures for a week or two. She asked me whether I had had Darshan of Sri Gurudev to which I replied that I was ever longing to have the Darshan. If that was so, she asked me, why should I not accompany her to Rishikesh. I gave this news to Sri Parameswaran in the evening when I called at his place. Here it is that a miracle happened. It was about 8 in the night and Sri Parameswaran left for his meals and I was alone in the front room of the house. Here in this room there was a transparent photo of Sri Gurudev behind which there was a lamp and there was no other light in the room. I was keenly observing this photo and mentally thinking as to when I would be able to have Darshan of Sri Gurudev in person. Suddenly I observed a movement in the photo towards north and after a little while a similar shake-up was noticed by me. It was at this moment that I decided that I should immediately start for Rishikesh at all costs. I took this as a direct call from Sri Gurudev. The next day or so I applied for leave for 6 days which was immediately granted. (To get leave from office is very difficult indeed, the more so, as I had enjoyed leave only last November.) My second experience of miraculous help from Gurudev was that I was able to secure reserved accommodation in De Luxe train with the help of Sri Ganesan, Guard, who is a staunch devotee of Sri Gurudev. The De Luxe train stops at New Delhi and all have to detrain there, as this station was the terminus. I am quite new to this place and while I was trying to engage a taxi to take us to Old Delhi station I was promptly advised by the man that we could reach Delhi by another train which was due to arrive a little later. I felt always that Sri Gurudev was always with me and guiding me. I need much more guidance and so I pray ardently that Sri Gurudev will accept me as his disciple and give me spiritual guidance throughout.
Telepathic Forces Of Swami Sivananda
(Yogi Sri Atmananda, Germany)
A Yogi living in the Spirit has telepathic forces, developed as the natural consequence of his spiritual growth. So German newspapers have published the story of Charlotte Walinski-Heller who had heard the telepathic call of Swami Sivananda, asking her to come to India for a study of Yoga and for spreading Swamiji’s thoughts in Germany. She followed his call.
What about myself—I can give a report of a similar experience. Being editor of a German magazine ‘Friede’, founded in 1953, under the inspiration of Swami Omkar, I had sent the first copy of it to Swami Sivananda by air-mail. The same day when Swamiji received the copy, I had a sudden vision of him: I saw him standing before me for a minute, kindly smiling at me. So the Swamiji’s thoughts are so strong that they can take shape by telepathic force. We often publish articles of Swami Sivananda in our magazine giving help and spiritual support to our readers. God’s richest blessings to the great Swamiji for all he is giving to us!
I wish to express to You my heartiest thanks for Your appearance in my room last midnight. What have I done to deserve such an august visit? I had thought that You would not again leave Your Ashram that is far away in the solitary forests. But here You were in all Your unbelievable beauty and glory of a great Mystic sage and Yogi, Your face more rosy than coloured marble can depict, Your eyes radiant like two suns. With one hand You were giving me all Your wonderful books, with the other You were holding the Yogi’s bowl. You left chanting in Your incomparably sweet childlike voice ‘Om Namah Sivaya,’ the same how You introduced Yourself. So there could be no shadow of doubt about Your identity. I hope You had a blissful return journey in the moonlight and are now residing again in Your sylvan Himalayan retreat.
—Sri C.P. Chakravarthi, Banaras.
On Saturday, 23rd July, when we were having the usual Bhajan at about 10 p.m. my daughter Chi. Sow. Murali felt that somebody was knocking at the door. She got up and opened the door when, to her amazement, she saw Sri Gurudev standing at the door with his long stick and smiling at her. Within a minute before she could recover Sri Gurudev entered and went straight inside our Puja room in the midst of Bhajan. Chi. Sow. Murali followed the footsteps of Sri Gurudev and immediately lighted camphor and this caused surprise to us as it was unusual for camphor Arati to be given in the middle of Bhajan. After the Bhajan was over on my questioning Chi. Sow. Murali, we heard from her the above narrative which moved me so much that I could not control myself. Gurudev, what to say of Thy unbounded love towards us. Though I have had various experiences in dreams of Thy mercy and blessings, I am not as fortunate as Chi. Sow. Murali to have Thy Darshan. When I asked her to write to Thyself she said, “Sri Gurudev knows everything and what to write?” Anyhow, I could not rest content without opening my heart to Thyself. It is our humble prayer to Sri Bhagavan to take pity on us and show us the path to attain that state of supreme happiness which cannot be described.
Sri Balkissenlal Poddar’s wife had an acute attack of pleurisy and, her condition was causing great concern to the expert doctors of Calcutta when, Sri Balkissenlal who is by nature a pious man, expressed his anxiety to me. This happened at the time of Sri Gurudev’s birthday celebrations here. Then I told him to have faith in God and do Mrityunjaya Japa regularly for the early recovery of his wife. I also volunteered to send Sri Gurudev’s Charanamrita through Sri Sivananda Savitri to his house the same evening besides our offering prayers to our most beloved Gurudev for the early recovery of the patient. The same evening, Sri Balkissenlal sent his car to pick up Sri Sivananda Savitri with the Holy Charanamrita and the Vibhuti Prasad. I do not know how to express my unbounded love and gratitude to Sri Gurudev for the wonderful miracle. Besides our prayers, the patient and her husband with great faith have been chanting the Mahamrityunjaya Japa with encouraging signs of the patient’s progress towards early recovery. She is now convalescing by my beloved Lord’s Mercy. Sri Balkissenlal personally came to our house today to offer prayers to my most Adorable God-Incarnate.
My friend Sri G.K. Menon has improved due to his faith in Sri Gurudev, and regular Japa of Mahamrityunjaya Mantra. He wanted me to convey his humble Pranams and he would be writing to Sri Gurudev as soon as he is able to regain strength to move about. The sudden attack and the rapid recovery are, as he has expressed is another “miracle of Sri Satguru Maharaj.”
—Sri Sivananda Nilakantan, Calcutta.
On 30th August, 1956 my wife Chandrakant had been to a relative’s house at about 3 p.m. It was the practice of Sri Chandrakant and other family members to assemble together and do Kirtan of Mahamantra “Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama Hare Hare; Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare,” between three and four in the evening every day. At three O’clock Swamiji appeared before her, who was then in a trance and asked her to return home as it was time for Kirtan. She found Swamiji running to her house and she also ran after Swamiji to her house. On reaching the house she asked someone for water to drink. She was still in an abnormal mood and when she sat in front of Swamiji’s picture she received a cotton Saree wrapped in a newspaper and issuing from the picture. Some family members were eye-witnesses to the incident.
—Sri Sivananda Sumant Prasad, Baroda.
On 15th September, 1956 Your Holiness gave Darshan to daughter Premila at about 5.30 p.m. She offered You a cooked suran curry and two sweet balls prepared from groundnuts. Your Holiness graced us and took three-fourths out of one sweet ball and one piece of the vegetable. Your Holiness then graced us by giving marks of Foot-Prints on one foolscap white paper. After giving the Foot-Prints Your Holiness personally wrote ‘Om’ on the top of the paper, and ‘Sri’ at the end. Your Holiness asked her to come to Ananda Kutir and have Your Darshan. After giving a handful of water from the Kamandalu Your Holiness vanished.
—Sri Ramaniklal Parikh, Baroda.
I am glad to inform You that one Mr. P. Annaswamy Iyer of Bombay called on me casually this morning and during the course of our conversation I showed him round our Divine Life Society Hall. He is a great devotee of Goddess Amba Bai. He looked at Your photo and concentrated on it for a few minutes. He went into a trance and appeared to be in conversation with Thyself which he confirmed after his Samadhi state.
—Sri T.A. Rama Rao, Madras.
During my visit to Sri Rama Rao’s residence at Madras, I was taken to Divine Life Society Hall at about 11.40 a.m. on Tuesday, the 10th instant. I looked at Your photograph and within a few minutes I saw You in person with all glittering rays coming from all parts of Your body and immediately I came in a trance. There was some conversation, about which I was not aware and I requested Sri Rama Rao to get it confirmed through Your Holiness, as I am a complete layman on whom some powers are bestowed by Sri Ambaji, through which the suffering humanity finds some solace.
—Sri P. Annaswamy, Bombay.
On the evening of 2nd February I saw Thee. You stood before me; I told You that Thou should not eat sugar. You replied me, “I can eat sugar.” Then You looked at me and I felt Thy Godly Power. I felt so much closer to Thee than ever before. The impression was so strong in me. I wish I will get more and more Darshan of Your Holiness, like this. Gurudev, I was so happy to see Your letters. They are so full of wisdom that every time I read them I learn something new. Thou hast answered all my questions.
—Sri Otti Friedman, Johannesburg.
I am extremely grateful for His Holiness for the very kind advice, guidance and blessings embodied in his letter of November, 1954. In the vision I saw His Holiness was distributing gifts and presents to many other devotees and admirers. He later held my right wrist and smilingly shook hands with me. As the trees shed their leaves in season, and also the birds moult their feathers in season, so also Sri Swami Sivanandaji has both shed and moulted the ills in his physical body all the more to perfect that body and purify the spiritual soul for the greater tasks that lie ahead.
—Sri G.C. Akwetey Kotey, Accra.
We know You dear Sivananda for over a few years. We love You noble Brother and the endless selfless service You have been rendering so lovingly to all mankind. A year ago I had an experience. I woke suddenly and before me I saw You, Master Sivananda. You said, it is time to give praise and thanks to God. I felt a strange peace come over me.
—Mrs. Margret Witzig, Switzerland
I thank You from the depth of my heart for sending Your beautiful photo and for Your precious books. It was one of the happiest of all days when the parcel of books came. When I am looking on Your very dear face, I am feeling immediately Your Grace with the strong spiritual currents. It helps me very much for my Sadhana. My states of Union are deeper and deeper every day. I had visions about You. The first was: You stood in full sunshine with some persons before some buildings. You looked smiling on me and Your right hand raised up suddenly. The second was: You were seated in squat and You stood up immediately. I saw You again two more times. These visions I saw in the morning hours between 6 and 7 o’clock.
I reach every day a wonderful state of Union especially when I sing, after spiritual practices, Your Kirtans. I read in Your book “Goal of Life and Its Attainment” that You sang on every occasion the Kirtans when You visited Dehra Dun in March, 1954. I tried to sing them more than before and it was wonderful. It was a precious instruction from Your new book. I am daily repeating the Mahamantra. Many thanks for Your kind protection.
Many many thanks for Your welcome and kind letter of 1st July. With Your last letter comes a great spiritual vibration also, which helps me very much. My progress is very good now especially when You send Your spiritual currents as You promised. Many thanks to You. I thank You very much for Your kind spiritual care about me. Your Grace abides with me always. In deep reverence I thank You.
I am reading daily Your precious books which You sent me so kindly for my study. Therefore, I feel I am always with You. Every day I feel Your tremendous spiritual currents when I am looking on Your beautiful picture or when I merely remember Your. It is the great help for me.
—Prof. Karel Vlk, Czechoslovakia.
I am pleased to read Your kind letter. Thanks very much. I will come to India. First of all I will learn English more fluently. I thank You for Your kindness. I have patience and belief to make progress by and by. In 1948/49, I just remember, I had a vision at night. I saw You exactly physically in a white clothing. You were in a big hall teaching a lot of people and now Your picture I see. This is absolutely the photo of the Vision I had.
—Mrs. Steuernagel-Scheidt, Germany.
I have recently enjoyed an exchange of correspondence with our mutual friend and brother, Dr. Schneider, Editor of ‘Synthese Universelle’, and he informs me of the preliminary plans for establishing an international body of representatives for The Divine Life Society in the different countries of Europe. He has extended to my co-worker, Eleanor Upton, and myself, the distinguished honour of being co-presidents for the D.L.S. for England. We have been moved by the Holy Spirit to accept this great honour and have informed him accordingly. We are happy to be able to serve in this vital spiritual work.
As I see it, with the blessed guidance and cooperation of Your most esteemed and illustrious self, whom we honour for our hearts beat in rhythm with Your great and loving heart how can we serve the Eternal Lord better than by working with You? I will do all I can to serve the Divine Cause with You. I have experienced a sense of longing to meet You and discuss numerous important spiritual matters. However perhaps some day it may be that we shall meet on the physical plane.
Myself and Eleanor Upton have had vivid dream-experiences in which we saw You and spoke with You. A few weeks before Christmas in such an inner spiritual state I approached You and said, You had been very generous to me, most kind and had given more than that for which I was worthy. Your reply was (imbued with love) but very firm, “Yes, I know. I was testing you and I wanted to see how you would react.” A few weeks later I learned from Dr. Schneider’s letter about the presidency—so I am wondering if this has some connection.
Then again at Christmas-time Eleanor Upton in the early hours of one morning saw an ethereal form of the Master Morya and he said it was part of the plan that we should link up with You to serve in the common cause—so we assumed that this Master was at work behind the scenes in connection with this important historical spiritual plan of coordination. Since then I have had three other vivid dream-experiences in which You appeared. After reflecting deeply upon these things I have come to the conclusion that this phenomenon is the outcome of telepathy on Your part and as the thought-waves via our inner consciousness stimulate certain centres in the subconscious, we get vivid pictorial impressions in the form of visions.
Be assured, my Beloved and most Illustrious Friend, that Eleanor Upton and I have only one concern in this life and that is the same as Your own—to serve mankind by imparting Light and Love and Peace to our fellow-men.
During my talks in the last few years I have spoken of Your Beloved Self to my students, pointing to You as a fount of divine wisdom, and Your literature which is regularly sent us and greatly appreciated keeps us very much in touch with Your sacred Ashram and its wonderful work.
—Mr. Joseph, England.
Revered Swamiji Maharaj! Having recently been granted with a glorious vision of Your Holiness, I have decided, after a great deal of reflection, to write to You about it. The science of Yoga and allied subjects have been the main interest in my life since childhood and I have become acquainted with Your books while still in China, where I was born (a white Russian). For the past 12 years I have been trying to study Yoga with various teachers in New York. Unfortunately, there are no qualified teachers. Now I am very happy to have met Yogiraj Sri Harry Dickman, Your disciple. After my usual round of Yogic exercises, I started to meditate, and all of a sudden, the image of Your Holiness stood before me, leaning on a staff. Here it is important to note that I was not thinking of You or any other personality that day. I was particularly impressed by the brilliance of the eyes and a strange light that surrounded the figure, which emanated great power and seemed to convey better than words, knowledge of inner planes. The image raised the arm and pointed to snow-clad mountains in the background of the picture, as if to tell me that all that I have been aspiring for during so many years, could be found there. Then I perceived that in Your other hand Your Holiness held a beautiful incenser of black colour in the shape of a Lotus Flower surmounted by a miniature dome, which You were swinging in my direction, so that I was veritably immersed in clouds of incense. Suddenly there appeared around You several strange figures, in long black robes and black tall pointed hats, who prostrated themselves before Your Holiness, forming a circle of which they were the radii, and You the centre. The vision persisted for quite a while, though no words were spoken, it was utterly real and seemed to convey a definite Message. I pray for Your guidance.
—Sri Tamara Bourkoun, New York.
A most wonderful experience I had a year and a half ago while I was doing my Sadhana in my room facing East during the evening hours. Suddenly I saw His Holiness looking at me with his wondrous eyes. He was moving His lips but inaudibly. When I tried to gaze more fixedly at Him with my eyes He vanished.
On another occasion when I was practising Yoga under His preceptorship, one morning I saw Him at the foot of my bed, commanding me to get up at Brahmamuhurta and start the practice.
Truly the Lord’s ways are mysterious indeed. These are miracles which people of little faith can hardly if at all believe. May Swamiji live forever that He may guide Humanity on the spiritual path.
—Sri Susano Oritz, S. America.
On Sunday night You appeared before me. Your eyes were big, bright and penetrating, they seemed to go right through me; an electrifying sensation permeated my whole being. Then a light appeared. It became a point and then vanished; the last thing I remember was a click within the body. I lost complete awareness. It was like being swallowed up in an ocean of nothingness. I have no recollection of what happened during this period of time, as there was no awareness.
Three days later You appeared before me again. You were dressed for travelling in warm clothes.
Beloved Self, my gratitude to You is profound for the Divine thought-rays which You project perceiving these rays emanating from the Ajna Chakra in You; they look like fine rays of light. These powerful vibrations are a great help for they enable us to do things at the right time with successful results. Thank You dear Siva.
Many thanks for the consignment of books. They are already in circulation and doing tremendous good. The pamphlets have been sent to England, Philadelphia, Brazil, Germany and other countries also. Some of the pamphlets were distributed to the shops in Sydney. I am guided by direct intuitive influence. The pamphlets are much appreciated by the public at the best. Thank You, Dear Siva, for the Divine Guidance.
In my deep concentration, You appeared in the room and stood before me towards the right hand side of the chair. You moved Your hand, starting from Muladhara Chakra upwards. The power moved through all the nerve-centres. I distinctly heard You say ‘Om’ in all centres. That was wonderful. Just looking at Your photograph gives me strength and divine power. I pray, that Your Holiness will build up strength within to help the less fortunate brothers and sisters. May the Lord endow Thee with the strength of the Himalayas so that You will recover completely from Your recent illness. Be great in health and strength eternally. May the sacred power of the Vedas protect Thee from the Karmas of others.
Thanks very much for another bundle of books. They are in circulation bringing much good to the public and they are spreading the Message of Thy Divine Love in all parts of the country. The Library is making tremendous progress. I felt sad. I did not get Your letter. Among the hundreds of people in Sydney, fortunately it fell in the hands of a Vedanta student who kindly returned it. The Holy Vibration of Your letter was the means of guiding it. It was also of help to the student as she had an accident. She was returning home after seeing the doctor when she found Your letter. I was grateful to her for returning the letter to me. God works in mysterious ways. It is all wonder. Dear Siva, thank You for Your Divine Help.
Dear Sivananda, will You kindly send me a little of the Holy Ash from Thy Ashram? Thank You so much for the Divine Help and Protection that You have given to me. Prostrations to Thee who art Bliss, Auspiciousness, who art the Giver of Happiness Supreme to all Thy devotees in all parts of the world. May the Lord bless Thee with good health eternally.
I was meditating with Mr. Jung and Mr. Smith on Saturday night; You appeared three times. The first time You appeared, I felt Your presence strongly, felt the muscles in my face changing, felt a complete change in my whole body. On one occasion I saw You with a quill pen in Your left hand, the symbol of the old-fashioned pen conveyed the thought of ancient writings; throughout time I saw You standing in the chair with Your arms resting on the arms of the chair. We all felt as though the power was lifting me out of the chair and my head felt as though it was coming off, felt as though I wanted to stand up on this occasion; it was a wonderful night.
You have helped me more than words can express. I am truly grateful; Your prayers have guided me. You are my only true friend in this life.
On the 12th of July my spirit left the body and entered a room where there were mentally sick patients. One woman seemed to be very much in trouble mentally. The woman remarked that she would never get through. You have come to the right place, the woman spoke English. She had dark hair, her face was pale, strained and drawn. It was a small room, Your Holiness entered this room. You smiled at me and it seemed as though heaven was in that place. My soul felt uplifted; then You left the room through a door situated on the left side of the room near where the sick woman was sitting.
At this time a woman appeared on the scene. She was stricken with grief. Her grief seemed to be connected with a little child which was lying on the ground apparently dead; the woman turned her back and ran away. You spoke to the child and called it by its name three times. The thought came to me that You were liberating the soul of the child, then You picked up the child’s body and took it away. It was indeed a privilege to be allowed to witness this sacred experience.
On the class-night You entered the class and stood near Mr. Jung, the thought came to me that You were giving him strength and power. You placed Your hands on his shoulders; we all felt the holy vibration. We were uplifted and very happy after this experience.
Many thanks for the pamphlets which we received safely. They will give much help and joy to hundreds of souls. The Universal Prayer therein is indeed beautiful. I am learning it off by heart. The part where it says, “I prostrate to that Satguru, the Brahman, who is Bliss,” has a powerful effect on me. It elevates one’s consciousness to a high degree.
On 25th October, Mrs. K. was upset mentally. I was trying to comfort her, whilst thinking of You Dear Holiness, when suddenly I was able to see You. I told her of Your presence and that she would receive news from You, within a few days. Your Holy Presence had an uplifting effect on her spiritually. She became quite a different person and recovered rapidly. Three days later Your letter arrived and this was the crowning point of her happiness. She was overjoyed and is at peace.
Thanking You for Thy Divine Healing for our dear patients. Whenever we need Your help, whenever I think of You, I feel Your presence. I thank You for the Divine Power I receive from Thy Loving Hands.
On the 12th November, Friday night I was speaking to Mrs. K. I saw Your Holiness entering her treatment room and stood by the side of the table. You had a long scroll of writing in Your hands. A rainbow of beautiful colours was right over You and this rainbow extended right across her room. I have seen her. She is happy and light-hearted since the vision.
It makes me happy to know that You are better and I do hope and pray, Dear Holiness, that You will soon regain Your good health and strength and by the Grace of God be with us eternally.
We need Your Holy guidance. Without it we would be like lost sheep in a wilderness of materialism. O Dear Holiness, I pray that You will be with us now and for evermore.
My wholehearted thanks for the beautiful photography of Your dearly beloved self. It is lovely. Looking at it gives one a feeling of heavenly peace.
When I first opened Your letter, Divine Power emanated from it. And it entered my whole being which gave me a feeling of overwhelming happiness. Thank You so much, dear Siva, for Thy Holy Power. Thou art Sat-Chit-Ananda, Adorable Siva-Ananda.
Thank You so much for the books for study. They are most illuminating. Mr. A. allowed me to give him some healing on Saturday. Before placing my hands on him, I repeated Your Name mentally and visualised Your dearly beloved Self in my mind. Then I repeated Om. Then I placed my hand on the navel centre and when I was just starting to concentrate I saw You clairvoyantly standing at the head of the patient’s bed. As I watched, sun rays emanated from Your being. I felt a ray of heat going through my hands and my body seemed to be on fire. I thank You for helping us. Dear Holiness, with Thy Divine Power, he feels better after the treatment.
By Thy Grace, I have been able to eradicate all attachments and desires for earthly things. This world seems to have become an illusion. I am in but not of it. Om seems to have brought about this condition. I have been carrying on Your instructions, Dear Holiness. I repeat 21,600 times Om every day. My soul feels uplifted. Om seems to draw me like a magnet to Infinite Spirit. Forsake me not. Thou art my true friend. Protect me from astral entities that would try to bring about a downfall. Endow me with Thy Grace, my Lord, that I may become worthy in Thy sight to obey Thy Will eternally. Om Sivananda. Om Om. For the last six months, the astral entities try to disturb me. I forcibly repeat Thy Name, Dear Sivananda. With Thy Divine Help, the entities become confused and scatter their forces. I think of Your Holiness and repeat Om Om Om.
From such experiences, through Your Grace, I have realised that Yoga is the path to God-realisation and Om is the Safety Valve while travelling the path to God.
Mr. Mc Pherson who lives in Adelaide has been critically ill. His wife wrote and asked for spiritual help. I wrote to him and drew the Om sign on the letter and holy ash sprinkled within the sign. I mentally thought of You dear Master and prayed for help for him. His wife wrote and thanked us. By Thy Grace he passed the crisis.
A few days ago I received an urgent wire from Mrs. Mc Pherson appealing for spiritual help. I burnt some incense, placed Your photograph on the little altar with fresh flowers and prayed to You for help for him placing a little of the Holy Ash in the middle of his forehead (in his photo) and concentrated for a long time on his hip whilst using the Mantra. I felt a strong influx of power and lost body consciousness for a while. When I came out of this state I saw You for a brief moment. I was overwhelmed with gratitude knowing by intuition that You had helped him. Thank You dear Siva, thank You so much. Seeing You was an answer to prayer. A few days later, received a letter from Mrs. Mc Pherson saying that her husband was much better. It is hard to express in words the happiness one feels at witnessing this wonderful phenomena. Your wonderful divine instructions are kept in mind and followed completely with success. I pray You have good health always and please accept my gratitude for Your holy guidance and help.
—Mrs. M.E. Wilson, Australia.
My young son, aged about 2 years was admitted in the hospital for strangulated hernia operation. You can understand my anxiety. He is my first and only son. He was to be operated on 22nd July, 1956. That day in the morning in a golden hue colour in luminous form my beloved Gurudev Sri Sivananda appeared before me holding some surgical instrument in one hand and some cotton wool in the other. Yes; the operation went on well and the chap is fine now. On that day in the evening Your colour portrait was installed in the prayer hall of the Penang D.L.S. with my humble prostration.
—Sri M.K. Ramachandran, Malaysia.
Recently I was very ill. I even thought that I might pass away. I was already worshipping the photograph of Sri Satguru Bhagavan Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj and now began to offer Stotras and also do 28 Namaskaras, morning and evening. After the fifth day, I had a vision in which Sri Guru Bhagavan appeared and told me: “Don’t be afraid. I have come.” Bhagavan disappeared. Within 48 hours I was as healthy as before; and I continue to meditate constantly on the glory of Sri Guru Bhagavan.
Sri Guru Bhagavan is Para Brahman Itself. But He is also the Great Lord who incarnated Himself as the Dasa-Avataras. He is Rasa-Ghana (full of the nectar divine), Honey of Parama-Ananda, Divine Light of Divine Lilas. He is a Living God, granting all our desires. He bestows the highest bliss on all. It is a great, delightful wonder that the Supreme Being is playing thus with us all, and offering Himself as the boat for us to cross this ocean of Samsara. There is no doubt that they who resort to His Lotus-feet will attain Moksha here and now.
—Sri Swami Bhagavatananda, Nagercoil.
When I reached here mother’s condition was such that we all thought that she would expire. But I was confident as at the time of my departure from Ananda Kutir Sri Swamiji told me “Don’t fear; everything will become all right.” Just a week ago till which time mother was not conscious at all and suddenly mother opened her eyes and told she saw Swamiji sitting by her side telling her that he will look after her and not to fear. From that period mother is getting better little by little every day. On the same day the children saw Swamiji in their dreams. Of course, it is not strange to me because I am always sure that Swamiji’s Grace is fully upon me.
—Sri Venkoba Rao, Madras.
Your Holiness’ letter has brought new hope and new life for the most humble, silent and dependable Charan Das. Great Papa, I have no words to pay my thanks for the kind blessings Your Holiness has showered upon me. Satguru, kind Papa, it was my old old desire, that Your Holiness must some time kiss me as a kind father kisses his innocent son. So, few days back, Your Holiness was very kind to kiss me twice in my dream. I was so much intoxicated, that I remained full of its ‘Nasha’ for many days. Papa kind, can I take the liberty of requesting You to be with me, to guide me, and help me to be most regular in my Sadhana, and to be called Your Holiness’ Dass?
One day my son fell seriously ill, which had upset me. Finally, I placed him under Your Holiness’ control, by placing Your ‘Murti’ on his bed. The boy was very intelligent to bow before Your ‘Murti’ and repeat “Jai Gurudeva, Jai Gurunath.” With Your kind Grace he is more than O.K. Kind father, only I know how Your Holiness protects me.
—Sri B.L. Kalia, Jullundur City.
I jumped and danced with joy when I read Your kind and loving letter. I thank You very much for it and also for the gift of books I received from You today.
Though I am a very insignificant disciple of Yours and quite imperfect also yet I experience the great love of my Master—my Gurudev.
I had been suffering from a pain in the right side of my stomach ever since July 1954. But because it was only a slight pain I did not mind it. But towards the end of December, the pain became more acute and instead of consulting a good doctor as my parents wanted me to do, I began to pray to my Rev. Gurudev to cure me. There was no relief till the llth of this month. My mother began weeping and asked me to consult a doctor. So I began to dress up to go and see the doctor, when a miracle happened. The pain left me entirely. I did not go to the doctor that day. I am completely free of that pain ever since. We all knew that our beloved Swamiji has heard my prayer and cured me. I fall at Your dear lotus-feet and thank You for Your kindness and love towards us. May I love You more and more Swamiji. Though my parents don’t write to You they have the greatest reverence for You. My little nieces do Puja to You and go to You in all their difficulties. And they say their difficulties vanish at once. Swamiji, please forgive me for writing such a long letter. I touch Your holy feet and pray for Your Blessings.
—Sri Jayashri, Tellicherry.
I was suffering from acute appendicitis and had terrible pain. I went to the Ashram to have Sri Swamiji’s Darshan. I explained my condition to him, and said that I did not want to undergo any operation, but that I had faith that his blessings would cure me. He simply gazed at me for a moment. The pain vanished. Now there is no trace of appendicitis; and, even the tenderness in the region has gone.
—Sri Swami Jyotirmayananda, Rishikesh.
You will be glad to learn that my wife gave birth to a son yesterday at about 1.45 a.m. in the Austanga Ayurved Hospital. Her blood-pressure was about 200 and now by Your Grace it is normal. The delivery was quite safe and the R.M.O. was quite surprised to observe that my wife was uttering ‘Siva’, ‘Siva’, ‘Jai Guru’, etc. The R.M.O. and the matron enquired of me why my wife was uttering such words in the Labour-bed. I informed them about Your Holy Name. This time, I am sure, You have done this miracle, because, all the hospital staff are very cordial and kind to my wife. Up to this time, the baby and the mother are all right. Kindly Grace them with Your Divine Asirvad. I was all through very anxious. You are really great father! Otherwise, it was impossible of my wife’s safe delivery and such cordial behaviour from the hospital staff is rare.
—Sri J.M. Bhattacharjee, Calcutta.
The miracle happened, my mother is cured, by Your Divine intervention. She was already condemned by the doctors; she is now healthy again. I do not know how to thank Your Holiness for the Miracle.
—Mrs. Aranka Koltak, Beirut, Lebanon.
My son was run over by a motor-truck. He was removed to the hospital. Doctors felt that the boy had only a few hours to live. The boy was in a precarious condition. I did not know what to do and was prepared to submit to the Divine Will. Just then I remembered that Sri Swami Sivanandaji had sent me just a day or two previous to that holy Bhasma and Kumkum. I had the Prasad with me. Feeling that the Prasad would bring about the best, I applied it on the boy’s forehead. A miracle took place. The boy slowly came back to consciousness and started repeating Hanuman Chalisa! From that moment he began to recover his health, and now he is perfectly all right.
—Sri Narsingdas Varma, Ludhiana.
Beloved Father, the Vibhuti sent by Thee acted like magic when my husband was suffering from abscess to his gum. His swollen face and fever caused a lot of anxiety to all and in fact he wanted to go to Madras to get it operated upon by a dentist there as there are no dentists in Tiruthuraipundi. The previous day I applied Vibhuti to his forehead and to my surprise the same night the abscess burst. The pain and the swelling subsided. My grateful thanks for the Prasad sent by Thy good self which gave a great relief to the patient and relieved all of us from anxiety.
Gurudev, our beloved father, really I am very grateful to Thee. I feel very happy now. You are really God to me. May God give Thee a very very long life to save humanity. This is my earnest and sincere prayer to the Almighty. Only You must guide and save us.
—Mrs. Vimla Karnad.
Since my enrolment as a Divine Life member I have derived the spiritual attainment of a lasting nature. I am happy and able to get spiritual waves when I feel thirsty.
During last year I became blind. It was Your Holiness’ special Mandir Prasad that gave me light back. Not only that I got vision back but I also realised the real aspect of the Divine Light. When I long for it, I get it.
We all are happy and eager to have two more photos of Your Holiness and Prasad.
—Sri Kartar Singh Sohal, Jamuna Nagar.
Words are unable to express the wonderful cure of headache of my wife who was suffering from it for the last two days, without taking even water. A number of medicines were given to her but to no purpose. After having failed in my treatment of Homoeopathic and Biochemic medicines I applied the sacred ash and Kumkum on her forehead at 9.30 p.m. repeating “Om Guru, Om Guru, Om Guru Om, Brahma Guru, Vishnu Guru, Siva Guru Om.” As soon as I applied them she felt that the headache was disappearing and within 10 minutes she began to laugh as if she was not suffering at all and was hale and hearty as usual. When my medicines fail I apply the sacred ash and Kumkum. They bring the desired effect.
—Sri S.B. Singh, Bareily.
At the time of acute labour pains, sacred Prasad of the Lord sent by Thy Holiness with loving blessings was smeared with prayers. Immediately the male child was ushered into the world to the relief of my suffering sister. She has ever-abiding faith in Thy blessings with sacred Prasad of the Lord. Thou art a realised soul, one with the Absolute Power that governs the destiny of one and all. As such what can we poor ignorant creatures do to extol the magnitude of the Divine Grace!
Thou art the living symbol of the Force of God guiding man to a better plane of thought, words and conduct for realising the latent power in him.
—Sri Ram Das, Madras.
So many projects are being started by Thy child without first having Swamiji’s permission, but in our hearts we are fully conscious that Gurudev does everything although we often say, ‘We did this.’ Gurudev’s power is ever present here. A few nights ago Sri Manickum Chetty was ill. He had severe cough. Both of us were desperate. Suddenly Thy child thought of Swamiji’s Prasad and thinking of Swamiji put some in his mouth and rubbed some on the throat. At once the coughing stopped. We were not greatly surprised for Swamiji’s power and Grace is a matter of fact with us now.
May Gurudev’s charming and lovely form ever be present in our minds and hearts. Oh, how kind Gurudev is! Truly Gurudev belongs to his devotees. Gurudev truly, in the words of Paramananda, takes the most ignorant of devotees and transforms him to be useful to the world.
—Sri V. Sreenivasan, Durban, S. Africa.
One day I had taken a medicine with poison unknowingly and I used it at night by 9 p.m. After 15 minutes, my condition became dangerous. Vomiting and motions continued unendingly. These lasted for two hours continuously. My condition was sorrowful. At that moment, Gurudev told me, “My child, take my Charanamrit”. I asked my wife for it. Just as I had taken Gurudev’s Charanamrit, I got complete rest. I had forgotten my pain and troubles. At the same time, sleep had come over me. In the early morning when I had got up, I found myself very well. All my troubles removed themselves of their own accord. This had actually happened. Gurudev hears me. He lives with me always. He is merciful. He helps me every moment. We bow to Him with head and heart. He is my Lord. I meditate upon Him. Once Gurudev told of me: “Chedilal is my disciple by birth”. May His words be true always. Whenever I get my new birth, I shall be His disciple in each life. May my Sivananda live long. Now I am quite well.
—Sri Chedilal, Lucknow.
I am very much thankful for Your Holiness’ kind reply. My operation went on nicely by Your graciousness. A miracle happened. On the 6th of January 1955, I was operated in State Hospital. I had a severe pain and agony and could not swallow even water. Surgeon advised me to stay in the hospital for a day but I refused and came to my quarters. After an hour, I was very much upset. I sent for our Mill doctor. I was given a penicillin injection but I was in distress. When I tried everything and failed in every respect I thought of Your Holiness and started ‘Om’ Japa slowly; but I was getting pain by uttering. I told my family members to go to sleep. After a little while I saw Your Holiness’ figure along my bed-side. Tears rolled down along my cheeks and I kissed Your Lotus-feet. You were telling me to go to sleep and all pains will be over. Swamiji, I saw You in person, not in dreams. You were telling me as a Mother giving love to her son. After ten minutes I was in deep sleep. Guruji, please allow me to give You thanks for Your Darshan. I wish to remain at Your Holiness’ Feet always. I am very much obliged to You.
—Sri Ratanlal Sharma, Gwalior.
I was seriously ill. Doctors had declared that my case was hopeless. At that time I began repeating ‘Om Namo Bhagavate Sivanandaya’. Very soon I had a vision of Sri Swami Sivananda standing by my side and blessing me. It was not a dream nor a hallucination. It was more real than the cot on which I was sleeping. Anyway, that I was made completely all right miraculously and instantaneously is proof enough that the vision was real. Even doctors are astonished at the miraculous cure. It is all due to the supreme Grace of Bhagavan Sivananda.
—Sri Subramaniam, Bangalore.
I am glad to inform Your Holiness that I have returned home after successfully getting myself operated for the complaint mentioned in my last letter. It is indeed a matter of good luck for me that I received the Lord’s Prasad sent by Your Holiness just on the day of starting from home for the operation.
At this juncture I cannot help mentioning a very interesting incidence that took place at the Telegaon General Hospital, Telegaon, where I was operated on 6th June.
Immediately I lay on the operation table and was administered chloroform for the operation, some gentleman clad in pure white clothes came to the operation theatre and requested to be present at the operation as he said that he was a friend of mine. I should at this point make it clear that I have no friends at Telegaon and more so none was aware of my operation except my family and my younger brother at Bombay who arrived late in the evening on the same day. The ‘friend’ was with me after the operation as I understand from the Medical Officer at the hospital who had also given him a note giving details of injections to be purchased for me. Later, when the hospital people wanted to hand over to him my clothes, the ‘friend’ was nowhere and could not be traced in the whole hospital. The next morning the Medical Officer enquired if the injections required have been purchased. I was really surprised and so was my brother when the doctor insisted that he had given a note to the ‘friend’ who was with me on the operation day. Then we started searching the chit and we found it below my bed on the cot.
This experience has baffled everyone and more so myself as to the identity of the ‘friend’. After brooding over the matter, I can come to only one conclusion which I am satisfied is right.
I had not expected to receive the Prasad on the very day I was to start for the operation. It was the kindness of Your Holiness that was responsible for the same. I am fully confident and satisfied that the ‘friend’ at the hospital was none other than Your Holiness. I really cannot express my gratitude for the kindness Your Holiness has been bestowing on me. When I suffer and remember Your Holiness, I get relief. In the most difficult time, at the operation the kindness and Kripa of Your Holiness is by my side. It is indeed a matter of joy for me. At the same time I feel that I have not yet paid for all my sins of life as, even being at my side on that day, I have not been able to have Darshan of Your Lotus-feet. I pray to the Almighty Lord to bring me that day very near. I am sure with the blessings of Your Holiness the day I am eagerly waiting for will not be far away.
—Sri Murlidhar D. Harite, Satara Road.
A little after the receipt of Thy Holiness’ letter of 2nd July 1953, Sri Pushpa Kumari started with Bhava doing Japa of the Marriage Mantra very kindly prescribed by Thy Holiness. Two or three days later the Karmic purgation in the form of cold, cough, breathlessness, fever started and with medical aid these disappeared after about a fortnight.
During this period a very noteworthy incident took place, i.e., on the 4th instant, immediately after getting up from bed she started shivering, crying and weeping bitterly, complaining of severe pain in the abdomen and blurred vision and remarked that her end had come. This state continued for about an hour and we all tried to soothe her advising her to resort to Thy constant remembrance, and ourselves, after invoking Thy Grace started chanting loudly “Sivananda Om, Satchidananda Om” in a very sweet tune. And lo! to the amazement and spiritual satisfaction of all of us she gradually became calm at about 8.50 a.m.; her vision was becoming clearer and her gaze after some movement hither and thither centred above at the ceiling and she, while fully conscious of her surroundings, started smiling gently and while constantly fixing her gaze at the ceiling proclaimed to me sweetly and slowly “Babuji, see, Swamiji is here”. She immediately offered her Namaskars to Thee with folded hands and full devotion and kept on smiling gently. I was sitting at the foot of the bed and her mother was also called in by her and then she pointed out to Thy Holiness saying “Here is Babuji” and kept on smiling. “Do not shed tears. Swamiji is beckoning with His gracious hand and is saying to have Santi”. Then she asked for a tumbler of water and when it was given she got up from the bed and while sitting did Achamana, drank half the water and handed the tumbler back to her mother. It was taken hold of by Sri Mata Sajata Devi to be kept aside in fact to be used as Charanamrita. She did not allow this and asking back for the tumbler drank the remaining half fully and showed to Thy Holiness that it was empty then, telling us that Thy Holiness had advised her to drink the same herself completely. This state of ecstasy lasted for about 2 1/2 hours while she kept on smiling and again offering her devoted Namaskars to Thy Holiness, she was chanting some Mantra. She also saw that Thy Holiness kept smiling and blessing her with Thy assuring hand. She then asked us to prepare Prasad of Churna for offering to Thy Holiness. It was given to her; she then told me “Swamiji advises the offering of Prasad through His photo which was hanging in the room”. I then offered the Prasad to Thy Lotus-feet in the photo and we all started chanting the Arati. She then told us that Your Holiness was partaking of the Prasad. She then said that Swamiji has left promising to come back again. The Prasad was then distributed to all.
It is also a matter of high gratification that since the receipt of Thy letter of the 2nd ultimo her spiritual Samskaras have developed rapidly to a great extent. We are all eager to pay a visit to Ananda Kutir. All glory to Thee Sarvesvara.
—Sri Kedar Nath, Delhi.
Miraculous powers of His Holiness Sri Swami Sivananda Sarasvati seen and observed personally this morning in Bombay. Such miracles unheard of in modern history. Personal life saved from danger in America on way by air to India due to His Holiness. Letter follows.
—Sri R. Gauri Shankar, Bombay.
I cannot help relating here an instance how Gurudev looks after his disciples even from such a long distance. On the 9th night I was reading out teachings of Gurudev to my wife and other members of the family before retiring to bed. Thereafter I went to bed full of thoughts of Swamiji. Early in the morning I went to the bathroom, and there was a poisonous snake lying there. It was like a piece of rope lying half coiled. The bathroom is spotlessly clean and smooth with polished mosaic floor. It is not known how it ever got in there. I was very nearly going to pick it up and throw it away thinking it to be a piece of rope, when it was the protecting hand of Sri Swamiji whose thoughts we were saturated in from the night before, that desisted me from touching it at the last moment, as the snake made a little movement, just as I was going to touch it. Such is Gurudev’s greatness and bounty to help his humble disciples at the time of danger. May Lord’s blessings be upon him to continue to guide and protect us for ever.
—Sri K.P. Modwel, Allahabad.
Gurudev Maharaj! During the month of December, 1959 I began to feel a severe pain in my teeth. The pain was so severe that I was obliged to take leave for one month. On 25th December 1959, i.e., on the day I had received Guru-Mantra in 1958, my teeth trouble became so acute that at about 9 p.m. I became restless and my people actually brought me down from the bed, thinking I had passed away. But I remember, I was all the time remembering You and uttering mentally “Sivananda Sivananda Sivananda Pahimam, Siva-Guru Siva-Guru Siva-Guru Rakshamam”, and I actually saw You near my bedside. Three other forms, who stood at a distance from my bed, did not dare come to me, due to Thy presence up to 4 a.m. At 4 a.m. I heard Thy voice, “Now I am leaving, You are all right”. Within 24 hours, I actually became all right. This experience I am communicating to Thee and pray to Thee to kindly continue to bless this humble Jiva with Guru-Bhakti.
—Sri Inder Nath Poonj, New Delhi.
What a comfort to receive Thy kind letter! I was down with small-pox for more than 21 days and the domestic circumstances just then had also conspired with one inconvenience or other to make such a situation depressing, but I in all my humility confess to Your Holiness that throughout these 21 days and 18 days after my bath, my mind was constantly thinking of Your Great Holiness and the life in Ananda Kutir, Rishikesh, which was of such comfort that I never realised that I must have been suffering intense physical pain or mental distress. Lot of my well-wishers, good friends, kindly persons, and the eminent doctor actually felt from the liberal grant that Mother Divine had given me, that I must have been suffering from intense pain. I was just wondering why all these people should have been so emotional to be over-sympathetic towards me when I myself felt that there was no warrant to believe that I was passing through any such intense pain.
The ignorant being that I am, it never struck me that the constant meditation of Your Holiness which helped me to feel the presence of Your Holiness by my side, was the factor to conjure with in helping me not to feel actually the pain. One day in a dream I felt that I was being drowned in the Rishikesh Kund opposite to the Sri Rama Temple in the holy bathing ghat of Rishikesh, when seated majestically and with a halo and glory Your Holiness stretched out Your right hand and pulled me out above the water level. Even then, my over-weighted sins pulled me down into the water. Your genial sympathetic smile and a pull again took me to the shore by Your side and putting Your hand on my head I felt Your actual presence in a mood of sympathetically blessing me to enable me to wipe off my sins. The first idea that flashed through my mind was the glory of Your Holiness to be a Patita Pavana. I can understand the enlightened and the spiritual souls that settle round Your Holiness in daily contact with Your Holiness in the Ashram, hastened fast progressively on the spiritual path by Your Holiness, I felt Your Holiness was more concerned with the feeling “One sinner like me redeemed is worth all the Angels in the Ashram.”
Powerful as the intellect is, it is prone to dismiss this grand play of Your Soul as a figment of my imagination or the delirious condition of the brain which conjured this illusion. Then I felt there are reasons of the heart which the intellect can neither fathom nor understand. Glory to Your Holiness and Your Mission in that it has given me an abundant cheer, and I kept away from writing to Your Holiness firstly thinking that I must not allow the infection to be carried through my writing letters, and secondly with the unbounded faith that with Your Holiness’ Cosmic Consciousness and living in a state of Sahaja Samadhi, nothing in this world or outside it can escape the great Jivanmukta’s Cosmic vision.
Hardly had I felt like that, my assistant Sri Seshan told me that he had written to You and out came Your prompt letter of 28th November conferring the Blessings of God upon us all here. I am beholden, and my gratitude overwhelms me. How I am worthy or deserving of Your Holiness’ Grace to this extent, is beyond my limited and befuddled brain, but the solution is, Your Holiness knows how and why and where I am and I must be.
I pray to God, whose embodiment I realise in You, that this Mission of Yours may grow from strength to strength, and Your physical body be preserved in good health and harmony so that millions and millions of sufferers like me may have the redemption, Bliss and Peace by Your Holiness’ blessings.
My love and affections to all those great souls in the Ashram who are the Torch-Bearers of this Benign Divinity of incomparable Ananda Kutir and Sivanandashram.
—Sri K. Srinivasan, Alleppey.
My wife, my little son and myself were passengers in a bus which carried over a dozen other passengers. We were proceeding along the hill roads near Pauri. The motor car went out of driver’s control and gave one jerk before falling off a precipice. The bus rolled on the hillside. The doors behind got opened and all the twelve passengers seated in the rear seats of the bus were thrown away. Nothing more was heard of them. We were caught in the front seat.
When the bus gave a severe jolt before falling off the road, my little son, Satchidananda, mysteriously uttered: “Satguru Maharaj ki Jai” and this at once brought to our minds the glorious form of Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj, our Guru. His protecting arms were around us. Even though along with the bus we rolled several hundred feet down the hillside, and the bus itself was smashed into pieces, we three were almost uninjured. We sustained very minor injuries from which we recovered almost the next day.
Another bus which had been following ours stopped at the scene of the accident and rescued us. We were immediately removed to a hospital.
We were the only few who escaped unhurt in the terrible accident. It was all due to Sri Swamiji’s miraculous Grace.
Let the unbelievers laugh at me, but I can cite scores of instances within the last 5 or 6 months (i.e., since You have graciously taken me under Your shelter) how miraculously You have, for weeks together, enabled me to hear Your voice from a distance and to have Your guidance in the spiritual path which was almost unknown to me so long. Even in small matters such as my travelling in trains, trams and buses, I can never forget how You have, on several occasions, made matters easy for me so that I could travel in comfort and reach my destinations without the least trouble to my ever-weak health. And all these You have been doing for me from Rishikesh!
Is there any earthly father of anyone who can do one-millionth part of what You have been doing for me? Is there, therefore, anyone who can be a greater well-wisher to me than Your loving self? I know what You are to me—You are my God and if there is anything higher than God You are that Highest to me.
—Sri R.K. Neogi, Bhagalpur.
I thank my stars, my dear Master, that after all I have been able to discover You. Though I am still deprived of the good fortune of having Your Darshan, yet I have seen a true picture of Yours in my dream only about a week ago. I saw You in meditation. I prostrated before You with a flood of tears in my eyes. You asked me in a very sweet and loving tone what I wanted and my actual words were “I want nothing, Sire, but You.” At this You laughed a hearty laugh which was full of affection and compassion and then slowly I added, “I am in difficulty.” With these words still on my lips I woke up to find that it was already late to prepare for my duties. Here is a small request Father. I want two photographs of Yours: One small size which I may always carry in my handbag and the other a bigger one which may be kept in my room always to inspire me and my children with courage, faith and righteousness. With prostrations from Asha, Vijay, Ashok and myself.
—Mrs. Shyama Razdan, New Delhi.
This is the first letter I am writing to Your Holiness. But our astral minds are on increasingly intimate terms for the past one year. I have been blessed with Your vision in dreams three times because of Your boundless grace and love. I first saw Your Holiness in Madras at public meetings when You were out on the All-India Tour. Soon, due to Your Grace, I developed an admiration and respect for You.
A few months after, Your Holiness kindly appeared in my dream, in the early hours of the morning. That was my first vision of Your Holiness. This was the conversation that passed between us in the dream. On seeing Your Holiness in dream I said, “Your Holiness, my name is Kuppuswamy, third son of my father. My star too is Bharani. My ancestor too is Bhagavan Appayya Dikshitar. ‘Jiva Brahmaikya Vedanta Rahasya’ written by Satchidananda Sarasvati was the first book that left some profound impression on me. May I know why there are certain similarities between us?” On hearing me Your Holiness replied in the dream, “If so, that is a good indication,” and vanished.
On the advice of my father, I took Your Holiness as my Guru, in anticipation of Your kind and generous permission, and have been worshipping Your photograph in a very small and humble way.
Soon after, I had my second dream. Again Your Holiness appeared, I think in the early hours of the morning. In the dream I saw You shining in all splendour, sitting, with Bhasma adorning the body immaculately. If I remember right Your Holiness showed me some of Your daily activities.
The third dream is the most significant from my point of view. I shall part with anything to have that dream again. Your Holiness have overwhelmed me with Your kindness. In that dream I actually undertook a journey to Your holy place, Rishikesh. I came there and saw the beautiful lake and wonderful sights. I requested one of Your Sishyas to take me to Your holy presence. But I could not meet You and returned after seeing more sights.
On waking up I was sorry, very sorry, that it was only a dream. I wished it were a reality and I had met You. Then I went to sleep again.
But Your Grace was so boundless that another dream occurred within a short time and this time I actually met You and offered Namaskara to Your Holy feet. I saw Your Holiness with two women, whom Your Holiness said are fickle-minded Sishyas trying to learn. Then my father and I met You in a room. Your Holiness informed my father in that dream that I am destined to come to Rishikesh.
Sometimes I hear strange Mantras and holy sights like Siva-Puja in dreams. I am sure in mind that all these are due to Your Grace.
I am very grateful to You for Your kind letter dated 29th June, 1954. Just the previous night I had the vision of Your Holiness once again. In the dream I saw Your Holiness smear the Holy Ash (Vibhuti) on my forehead. The next day I received Your Prasad and letter. May I know the significance of this dream?
This is the fourth occasion when I am blessed with the vision of Your gracious self. Nothing but the Grace of Your Holiness, I am convinced, will help me.
—Sri V.N. Margabandhu, Madras.
I saw Your Holiness, one day in January this year, at about 4 a.m. walking in the verandah of my home in Ceylon, with a Dhoti and a long shawl around Your neck and shoulders hanging down on both sides. I was in the compound. When I saw You I ran up to You. A fortnight after I received the temple Holy Prasad. I was greatly relieved of my foot trouble.
—Sri S. Thillai Ambalam, Kuala Lumpur.
In the morning of this day—at half past three o’clock—You sent me Your message by means of the psychographical method and I understood You very well. You began to dictate Isavasyopanishad to me: Sarvam Anandam, Anandam Sarvam, Isavasyam Idam Sarvam. I tried to learn it by heart, and I recited to You the ‘Sermon on the Mount’, when I thought that You would have retired from this day’s busy life to come to rest. I sang You the wonderful song which begins with the words: ‘God is present, let us be silent’.
Now, You are sleeping, and my heart prays for Your welfare. I read over and over all what You told me by this wonderful wireless method. Your will forced me to be quiet, and calm I am.
Really, it was for the first time that I met with magical forces. I felt as if I were a ‘living stone’ radiating, as well as ‘Uranium’. I opened ‘The New Testament’ of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and found a passage wonderfully in tune with my roused feeling. I read 1 Peter 2, 5: “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.”
I have been waiting for a letter from You. Last week I had strange experiences. The voice that I constantly hear since the beginning of October, I often felt as if it were Your voice, which I have heard when we played the record with Your speech to students. I have been benefited in several respects. I thank You for all Your patience with which You have cured me from my heart-disease and liver-disease.
—Sri Hilde Friebel, Germany.
Your Gramophone Records bring us a lot of joy. Every day we listen to Your voice. Sri Rolf-Dieter who constantly remembers You as his dear uncle, likes the Om-chanting as best. Before getting the records, he sang Om rapidly and my wife told him that it is wrong. Now we find that he was correct. He always tells us that he had a dream in which uncle Sivananda was with him and taught him to sing Om like that.
In deep veneration I often think of You and take it for a great blessing to be thought of by You sometimes. Service of the poor and the sick alone will make one a Divine Personality. I admire Your ‘Sivananda Medical Organisation’ and offer You my help for my brothers and sisters in India.
—Sri Carl Lendle, Germany.
At 5.15 p.m. on 11.11.1956, a miracle occurred. Swamiji’s photo danced to the astonishment of many. People sitting nearby including myself saw this miracle. We bowed down and put the photo in the proper place. We thank Swamiji, our Gurudev for taking so much trouble of coming hither for the sake of the devotees here and we request for His blessings.
One day when I was sitting in the office much worried and thinking of running away from home, etc., Swamiji came in person and remained there for five minutes and consoled and said that it is momentary and will be all right soon. This was seen with naked eyes.
—Sri P.L. Narang, Dehra Dun.
At about 4.30 a.m. You stood before me and woke me up. I woke up from my bed and sat for meditation on the picture of Goddess Gayatri. But I saw Sarasvati and not Gayatri. Thinking I am under another vision I rubbed my eyes and saw only a little light and nothing else. Your answer was this: “When you were very young you had once kicked the idol of Goddess Sarasvati with your left leg. You were becoming day by day mentally depressed from that onwards. To kick Sarasvati is to kick Gayatri. Pray to Goddess Sarasvati. Here is the Mantra. Repeat it day and night. After three months see the change.” Saying this You disappeared. Since that time I am quite happy.
—Sri Swami Abhayananda.
I sent Gurudev my humble share for the New Year and received reply by one of the correspondents. The signature stuck to my eyes. I stared at these letters. The letters disappeared. The figure of Gurudev appeared. I sighed: “Lucky are they who receive letters in Thy writing”; and the very next day I found myself the lucky person so gifted by the Omniscient Lord. My joy knew no bounds.
—Dr. Sivananda-Saroj, Bombay.
I sent the Puja Kumkum and Vibhuti You were kind enough to send me, to all my friends and relations. I must say that it has done some wonderful miracles.
A girl, a relation of mine for whom they have been looking for a bridegroom for a long time, has almost found one now, and is most probably getting married this summer.
Another gentleman, a friend of ours got a very high post and is very happy. I sent some of this Vibhuti to my son in America also.
On more than one occasion I have experienced this wonderful magic, even with my very ordinary and simple Kirtan-singing, when I was all alone, singing to myself with all my mind turned towards the Supreme. What did I see? Believe or not, I saw clearly our adorable Guru Maharaj Swami Sivanandaji sifting quietly in a chair which was already there (as though it was kept for him) and nodding his head in appreciation and softly giving beats of Tala with his hand to suit the music. I was bewildered and astonished and some inner joy was felt by me. I continued my singing with my eyes wide open, gazing at our Swamiji who visited me so kindly, only for my humble music. I stopped my music, keeping Tanpura on the ground, I bent my head to prostrate at his holy feet (which I could see clearly), but lo! when I lifted my head to see his smiling face, the chair was empty and there was no one! The doors which were bolted from inside by me were intact, as left by me. I understood the miracle at once, and I was happy beyond measure. This happened once or twice when I was in Lucknow. Swamiji was then at Rishikesh. How could he visit me? I wrote to Gurudev at once about it. Of course, he did not comment upon it. But he is an Antaryami and knows everything.
Sweetest Gurudev, Your most loving letter, the spiritual literature, Your kind gifts (the hair-oil and the Chyavanaprash) everything duly to hand. Is it possible for me to thank my kind and loving Master! It was simply a joy to receive them.
Today something most miraculous in my life has happened. I know it is all due to Your Grace. Last night, just before retiring to bed, as usual, I sat on my terrace upstairs doing my Japa. After a little while though my eyes were closed, I could see some light very bright before my eyes. I felt a bit nervous, as I thought some thief might be standing there with a torch towards my face, and I at once opened my eyes and found nothing. And again I closed my eyes to continue my Japa, laughing at my own fears. Again that same bright light shone before me and this time I was more firm and bold and never opened my eyes. Gradually that light disappeared and I could very clearly see my beloved Gurudev’s sweet, inspiring face full of smiles. Gurudev had nice red ‘Kumkum’ mark, as big as a coin, on his forehead. I could even see (not very distinctly though) his holy feet crossed on one another. I at once bowed my head to kiss the divine feet in reverence. But I only kissed mother earth and woke up from my very pleasant trance. Ah! how sad I was to have missed my sweet Gurudev’s divine touch! After a little meditation, I got up in a very happy mood and went to bed. I slept very well. In the morning as usual I woke up exactly at 5 a.m. and came downstairs. After having a wash, etc., and keeping the water on the electric stove for making coffee, I sat down again for my morning prayers. My children woke up much later. Believe me, my adorable Lord, I saw the same illumining, glorious sweet face of my Master again, to my great joy. It made me sing and jump with joy. I offered 101 Sashtanga Pranams to Gurudev’s photo, which is hanging in my bedroom. Swamiji, the whole morning passed in the usual way, my thoughts all filled with Your divine magic powers!
—Smt. Sivananda-Vani Bai Ram, Delhi.
For the last few days I am at home on account of father’s and personal ailment. This afternoon I was just wondering whether I would be fortunate enough to have Your Holiness’ Darshan and thinking over the matter and while attending to my father, a postman was at the doors with a package of books so kindly sent by Your Holiness and what a surprise! One of the books has Your photo on the cover. Is it Guru Kripa or only a delusion? Whatever it may be, for the time being my desire for Your Darshan has been fulfilled.
—Sri Y.A. Ajinkya, Bombay.
I received the book ‘Sivananda, His Life and Work’ today and I am very grateful for the same. I thought of placing an order for the same but before doing so I received the very book. Really it is a miracle. Kindly convey my humble Pranams to Sadguru Maharaj.
—Sri C.V. Subbaiah Sastry, Banganapalli.
Swamiji, You are my Mother. Yesterday I wept without sleep before Your book on account of pain. At 11.30 p.m. You appeared suddenly and I do not know what happened. This morning I have experienced that I have done 24 hours Dhyana, etc. May Swamiji bless me.
—Sri V. Ramanathan, Madras.
Having read one of the works of Sri Sivananda Swamiji yesterday night I went to my bed. I think at about 12 o’clock in the midnight some faint light appeared before me and gradually the light became more bright. In that tremendous light I saw Sri Sivananda which was exactly similar to the Image which was given in the book. In the light he was blessing me with his right hand which was exactly similar to Jnana Mudra of Lord Krishna.
—Sri C.N. Nagaraj, Bangalore.
I returned from a trip at about 3 a.m. Whilst getting into bed I said to myself, “I am tired. No Japa today. I shall sleep till late tomorrow; it being Sunday.” But You appeared to me and I got up at about 5 o’clock and performed my usual Japa.
—Sri J.N. Paranagama, Ceylon.
Lord Sivananda has given one more proof of his extreme care of his disciples. One lady, Sri Yoga Patel, who occasionally comes to us for Satsanga, had her saree caught by fire. Lord Sivananda appeared before her and asked her to look at her saree, and extinguish fire. She was saved. Many of us are educated. Yet continuous proof of the Divinity of Lord Sivananda and heart-piercing and mind-captivating writings of our Lord have maddened us all.
—Sri Manuprasad S. Trivedi, Ahmedabad.
I constantly remembered You and prayed for relief from the depression and asserted always by Your sayings “Anamayoham, I am diseaseless Atma. I am not the body or the mind. Nothing can affect me.” To my surprise and by Your Grace my blood pressure came down and I was quite fit to go back to my work. I cannot express my devotion to You. It has only intensified my devotion to You and the Lord. I sat for meditation in the morning. I saw Swamiji standing in front of me. He blessed me and vanished. I was full of joy. When my wife was in great labour pains Swamiji visited my house and blessed me and said: “You will have two sons.” She had a safe delivery and twins were born. I have named them Rama and Lakshmana. Where is Himalayas, where is Madurai? How kind is Swamiji! What a great miracle!
—Sri K. Rangaswami Iyer, Madurai.
Received Thy kind letter with Prasad. Many a programme which otherwise would have been a thorough disappointment has become successful in the last minute definitely only through Thy special Grace and blessings. We approached the Supdt. of Elect. Deptt. to give permission for the illumination of a marriage pandal. He told us that we must apply through a licensed contractor. But we were not able to get anyone at the eleventh hour. We came home utterly disappointed when a car rushed in. The people in the car, not known to anyone of us, brought the current from 100 feet away from our locality, the materials being supplied by a friend of us here. It is all through Thy Grace. I cannot write, nay, I am able to write the ways You have helped this poor soul.
Beloved Gurudev, countless prostrations and adorations. Today we were blessed by Your visit and Ashirvad at the Puja. We had been remembering You and talking during the last 3 or 4 days that Your Holiness had not blessed us by Your visit for along time. Our desire is fulfilled today.
—Sri Rameshwar Nath, Damoh.
In 1946, when I was at Delhi, I was in an open terrace full of lights. After some time, at about 10 or 11 at night there was sudden darkness all around.
I saw two brilliant rays rising from a distance. After a few minutes I had the Darshan of Lord Vishnu and Swamiji appearing simultaneously. Then I saw the figure of Swamiji alone without that of the Lord. Then Lord Vishnu and Swamiji gave Darshan. After sometime Lord Vishnu alone was visible. Afterwards both Swamiji and the Lord were visible. Then there was a combined figure of Lord Vishnu and Swamiji side by side. At the end, the image of Lord Vishnu merged in the figure of Sri Swamiji. The next day the image of Lord Vishnu I beheld in the heart of Sri Swamiji Maharaj as depicted in the photo.
On the 20th March 1951 at about 4 p.m. after taking a little rest I sat on my cot. I heard a voice as follows: “Alavandar, in future do not ask for any eatables in your house.” The voice emanated from the photo of Sri Swamiji which is in my bedroom. From that day onwards I do not ask anything but things that are supplied to me unasked for.
—Sri C. Alavandaraiah, Madras.
I left all other religious societies and joined the Divine Life Society in Sydney. I have not regretted for the same and I am already finding my life changing in many ways. We are indeed lucky to have such a sincere leader as Mr. Jung. One night You appeared before me and raised Your hand in salute to me. Once I was standing in front of a green path, nearby a young man, who showed me the way. In meditation, I had wonderful experience. I saw a golden Light. I am sure of many other things. Sri Sivananda, I have read Your works and note how You are ever ready to help those who are in need of Your help. As I am an earnest seeker, aiming to reach my Goal with no selfish thought in mind, I humbly ask You to give me a helping hand by accepting me as one of Your group.
—Mrs. Zelma Shorrock, Australia.
My Ishta day being Monday, I do not visit anybody on that day. It was an unexpected thing that on last fortnight when I was sitting in meditation in the evening, suddenly I began to feel that my going to Krishna Murti was necessary and I would meet my Master. When I reached there Pushpaji and Mohiniji were present in Murti’s house. The young son Karttikeya saw Your foot on Pushpaji’s shoulder. I perhaps would not have told them what I enjoyed on the previous morning but I do not know how involuntarily I told all present there that these are common things. On Saturday the 3rd, I was much upset and wanted to leave Dehra Dun for Rishikesh but circumstances were such that I could not leave the house. Early Sunday morning at about 3.45 a.m. I think, I found that Your Holiness was sitting on a wooden decorated dais and some people were around You. I prostrated before You and heard Your remarks, “Kapoor Sahib, why so restless? If you cannot come, I have come.” I was electrified and remained in a state of eternal bliss for some time and finally it was 4 a.m. when the alarm timepiece closed the chapter and I had to resort to my daily routine. This day was thus one of the luckiest for me. Thousands of prostrations to Your Holiness.
—Sri G.L. Kapoor, Dehra Dun.
I had opportunities of hearing about Your Holiness and the noble work from my brother-in-law, Th. Man Singh who was suffering from T.B. and was cured by Your Grace.
The other day I went to meet a friend of mine with one of my tenants who is also closely related to me. He is Mr. T.V. George of I.A.F., stationed at Jodhpur and the owner of the book ‘Sivananda: My God’ written by Hridayananda. In spite of knowing the divinity of the book, I did not feel any inclination to study it through. But indeed Your picture on the cover impressed my soul and unknowingly, before retiring to bed, I said to myself about You: “People say that You are great and also to the extent of saying that You are a living incarnation of God but I would not believe it unless You prove it tonight in my dreams.”
To my amazement I dreamt to have gone to Your Ashram and I was received by three men in red robes. One of them told me that if I wanted peace and salvation I should bow to the feet of Your Holiness. I immediately bowed at Your feet reciting ‘Gayatri Mantra’. Then I remember to have returned home and I saw You following me. When I entered the room I found You there too and You taught me a new Mantra.
It must have been my folly to doubt Your greatness. I surrender myself at Your feet.
—Sri Veerbhanusingh Rathore, Jodhpur.
I stayed in Your Holy presence from 3rd to 25th September and my mind was filled with spiritual thoughts, bliss and happiness, the like of which I never experienced in my life. I made a lot of spiritual progress sitting in Your Holy presence, by the side of Mother Ganga, where the atmosphere was surcharged with spiritual vibrations. When I closed my eyes in concentration, I saw vision of Sri Rama amidst brilliant light and shed profuse team. Oh! What a soul-stirring experience! What a Bliss! I forgot everything about the mundane world. Even if I had spent my whole life amidst the silence of Himalayan caves I would not have had the soul-stirring vision of my beloved Lord Rama, my Ishta Devata. It is only the Guru Kripa bestowed upon me, that could conjure up such super-terrestrial visions. Now I realise with all my heart, that Thou art, no other but Sri Rama.
—Sri K. Srinivasarao, Berhampur.
During the visit to Dehra Dun of Mr. T.T. Krishnamachari, India’s Minister, I had to receive him at the railway station. My car was slightly delayed, and on the way to station, I offered a prayer to Swami Sivananda. To my great surprise, on arrival at the station, well before the train arrived, I learnt that the train had been delayed just outside the Dehra Dun station, by a few minutes.
—Sri K.N.P. Nair, Dehra Dun.
There was a registered parcel for me from Sivanandashram. The postal authorities do not deliver such parcels without my own signature. But, when I returned from the Clinic, I found that the parcel had been delivered. I enquired at the Post Office and was told that my own acknowledgment had been obtained. I asked to see the acknowledgment slip. To my astonishment I found my own signature, in the very ink which I use! Sri Swami Sivananda had performed this miracle in order to let me have the books without delay.
When I was at the Ashram, Sri Swamiji Maharaj had promised to give me a Rudraksha Mala with small beads. As such Malas were not readily available, I left without one. As I was examining a patient in my Clinic one day an aged Sadhu came to me and said: “You wanted a Rudraksha Mala? Here it is.” And he handed to me a Mala with small beads. I took it reverently and thought I could attend to my patient and then express my gratitude to the Sadhu. But, before I had finished the examination, the Sadhu had vanished. I knew it was Sri Swami Sivananda Himself who had come to give the promised Japa-Mala.
—Dr. Sushila Vighnay, Surendranagar.
O Bhagavan! In what way this dust can sing Thy Infinite glories! I am spell-bound by Thy unbounded grace, love and compassion. My heart is unable to contain Thy glory. Now it has no bounds. A vast boundless space. A big self-luminous light inside. Sri Gurudeva sitting there, ever shining, residing permanently. My Master’s ways are mysterious. On 29th September, 1959 I experienced that my gracious Master gave me Jhuta Prasad thus immortalising me. It is beyond my capacity to write anything about Thyself. No words to explain my heart-feelings. I need not. Because Sri Gurudev is Omnipotent, Omnipresent and Omniscient. He knows my heart-feelings as He alone resides there.
I am attaching to this letter below five drops of blood (resounding of full of Guru Mantra) from my right hand which is privileged to write so many letters to the Visible God on earth. This blood represents my entire blood which is surrendered at Thy Lotus-feet and always at Thy service. The five drops also represent the 5 sheaths and 5 senses, which I am surrendering to Sri Gurudeva. Now I am free from sensual pleasures as the senses have left me by Thy Grace.
—Sri A.G.R. Sharma, Sirpur-Kagaznagar.
Due to heavy flood in Andhra Pradesh, the Railway lines between Palasa and Tuni were seriously damaged. The roads were also not free. I had to pass between these two stations on bus and foot. At one place I had to cross a river, which was in full spate, on foot along with my wife. With my Ishta Mantra on lips while I was crossing it in a jovial mood, I felt as if I am crossing the Bhavasagara, with my Guru Bhagavan on my head; I was just to fall into a ditch, but my Guru Bhagavan who was just standing on the other side and looking at me, at once cried out and warned me to proceed after taking a right turn. I at once did according to His instructions and thus saved my life only due to His kindness. When I went to the other side I was surprised not to find out the Man who had saved my life.
—Sri Satchidananda Prasad, Patna.
On 5th September, 1958 I had been to the Nawrashtra Press from office with Sri B.P. Varma, our D.L.S. Branch Member for printing of the Birthday Message. After I returned home from there, I was given some little quantity of milk to drink as I did not want to drink. As soon as I drank a little I found it tasted saltish and unpalatable and my stomach began to swell, with heaviness over chest, and pain in lungs and a general sense of suffocation as if I was choked to death. I did not drink the rest of the milk at all, but only a few sips which I could do at one stretch in the beginning thinking the milk to be normal. After few minutes my condition became worse. I was advised by my wife and my children to run to the Patna Medical College Hospital (Emergency Ward) at once, as they suspected grave danger. I started with my eldest son Devendra aged 14 years on foot. It was 12 in the night, and there was no rickshaw or other conveyance at home. So I covered a distance of a few hundred yards on foot along with my son. The latter detected that my gait was not normal and goaded me to walk more briskly so as to be able to hire a rickshaw soon. He was very apprehensive. At first I thought to myself I was going on well as if in a normal way. But later I stood petrified all at once. I could not proceed a step. I discovered something; evil had already possessed my physical system and I scented wrong or poison in the milk. After a few seconds only an old Rickshawallah with his rickshaw was seen standing on the road. On my first call, he got ready to take me to the Emergency Ward of the hospital.
I reached there within 20 minutes time. I was asked to be put down. Two doctors on duty came to me and examined me. They said it was a case of food poisoning. They consoled me. They asked me to vomit which I did after making several attempts on drinking sufficient quantities of water. The discharge was very sour each time. The doctors said that if the poison would not come out by vomiting, then they would get it out by applying a tube through my mouth. But I went on vomiting in natural course by drinking water and did not have the need for the tube. My life was saved. Glory to my Lord who is most merciful, bountiful and extremely gracious Mother Gayatri Herself.
I returned in the same rickshaw at 6 a.m. The Poor man was waiting all the night in the hospital compound to take me back home and on return he did not charge any excess due for his prompt and kind services. A friend of mine from Arrah assisting me in the Conference (brother of Sri Sivananda-Chameli of Sivananda Sadan) remarked on hearing this story that it was our Beloved Swamiji who was waiting there alone with a rickshaw and who took me to hospital and back from there. I also do think so because it was all right, and impossible to find a Rickshawallah there on the road at the calm still dead of night. Glory to my Gurudev and His all-powerful, gracious, protecting Hands!
—Sri S.P. Sinha, Suraj.
It was the 3rd April and 1.45 a.m. when Your Holiness came to my bed at dead of night and I was fast asleep. You just warned me that there was something wrong and I should be up and doing. I was astonished, got up, opened the door and uttering Your Holy Name walked out into the verandah. I was in front of a thief leaping from my verandah into the courtyard. Shouting aloud I chased him and before he could cross the outer boundary wall, I had caught him. The Chowkidar and other attendants came down upon him on hearing my noise before he could escape from my grip and he was well bound down.
The thief had removed some articles beyond the boundary wall. Unfortunately for him he entered the Puja room and from there removed the silver Simhasana of Sri Durgaji not knowing that the photo of the Almighty Sivananda was inert yet alert, watching his movements. He could not imagine that Your Holiness is omnipresent and omnipotent.
The thief is in the lock up and the case proceeding against him in the local court. It was an exciting night and all the children kept awake the rest of the night singing Your Holy Name. Many, many thanks and crores of Pranams from our family at this end for thus saving them.
On the 24th another incident wherein Your Holiness dragged out my wife from the actual jaws of death. Your Grace is boundless and I surrender to my Saviour, my Lord, my Guru and my Father Divine.
I am very glad to receive Your instructions. Your letter has given me a great peace of mind. I have derived an ever-lasting peace from your letter. I feel a sudden change in myself when I read my Lord’s books or letters. I feel every day a new change in myself. Whenever I see Your photo I get a great peace of mind. Whenever I find my mind restless I repeat Your teachings and they give me real peace.
—Sri Lal Bahadur Mathur, Gaziabad.
I had left my home for good and was living at Banaras as a wandering Sadhu. I used to spend almost all my time in the temple of Mother Annapurna. One day I had a vision in which a tall and well-built Swami and three of his disciples appeared before me and said “Come to me,” and vanished. Then I came to Sivanandashram on my way to Badrinath. When I met Swamiji, I knew that it was this Swami whom I had seen in the vision. When I entered the office, I had another wonderful vision in which I saw Swami Sivananda filling the whole place and extending beyond too. Swamiji merely gazed at me and said, “This is your Badrinath, stay here.” I had to obey.
—Sri Swami Turiyananda.
I had been overwhelmed with family worries but all through this I have felt the warmth of Your kindness and friendship. The other day when I was worried about my spiritual life I saw You standing before me. I thought if You would take me as Your pupil and teach me Raja Yoga. You told me it was the Yoga for me. Let me have the great privilege of being Your pupil.
—Sri Violette Townshend, England.
Here I have been by some patients’ death-bed, repeating Mahamrityunjaya Mantra. They have found much relief and pass off peacefully. One elderly lady at her last stage got attached to me. I introduced Thy picture. The whole night she kept on saying ‘Sivananda! Sivananda!’ and the next morning passed away. Till the last she was conscious and sang Pattanathar, Thevaram, Thiruvasagam, etc.
—Sri Sivananda-Muktananda, Jaffna.
It was 4 p.m. I was getting ready to give a demonstration of Yoga Asanas to some of my friends who are interested in me, at my room, when the postman brought a parcel containing the two valuable books ‘God As Mother’ and ‘Bazar Drugs’. As I was opening the parcel, tears rolled down from my eyes as I could not control my emotions. I have often read from Your Holiness’ book ‘How Compassionate the God Is Towards His Devotees’ but I seldom realised its significance. Now I realise how compassionate ‘Siva’ is towards his disciples. I also read from Your Holiness’ book that a man may not believe in God but God believe in man. Truly speaking, I may not remember ‘Siva’ even once a day, but ‘Siva’ never forgets me once. Such is the compassion of the living God ‘Siva’.
—Jemadar T.K. Govinda Raj, Bombay.
Most venerable Gurudev, prostrations and adorations! I am proud having a letter and a bookpost from You. It is a thing of great pleasure that You remember me. Always give me place at Your feet, my Gurudev.
I like to worship God in Your form. My Ishtadevata You are. You are my Gurudev and You are my Ishtadevata, who has shown me the way to reach God. You are light for me in this dark world. I also don’t know why I have so much attachment for You when I have not seen You. I always feel as You are sitting near me and I am in Your feet. I am studying the books written by You, which give me unbounded pleasure and knowledge.
—Sri Santosh Vohra, Delhi.
I am very happy to receive the Prasad with Vibhuti and Kumkum which I never expected in my life. They came to me all the way from Rishikesh. His ways are really wonderful. Only a few days back I strongly thought in my mind that I would be very lucky to get Prasad and Vibhuti from Thine Ashram. Actually my desire was fulfilled.
—Sri M. Jagadeesan, Punganur.
I received Your Prasad in the form of a most important book ‘Mind—Its Mysteries and Control’. Since my initiation as an humble pupil or Sishya on 1st April 1953, I have been grappling with the uncontrollable vagaries of mind and at the time of my initiation I had brought to Your kind notice my inability for concentration. You had graciously told me to do Japa. I have been doing the repetition of the Mantra ‘Om Namah Sivaya’ and yet have not been able to achieve any tangible result.
I think You have, by Your Yogic powers, known the condition of my mind and have thought it fit to present to me the above-mentioned precious book. I have no words to express my gratitude to Your Holiness for the very apt ‘Prasad’ at the very apt time. I will study the book carefully and submit my difficulties for solution. Pray! Accept my most humble salutations and prostrations and guide me in my progress towards the goal of Self-realisation.
—Sri S.H. Thaker, Ahmedabad.
O Merciful Lord, Thou hast given me quarters. How can I express to Thee my feelings of gratitude and indebtedness! I find no words at all. How Thou hast given me this particular house is only a miracle. Thou art simply showering Thy Grace and blessings at all times on this worm whereas I am ungrateful to Thee in all respects.
—Sri T.K Srinivasan, Mettur Dam.
Many thanks indeed for the sweet Prasad of a little Banana received from Your kind self last night. Myself took it directly from Your hands and ate it.
There is a great pleasure in remembering You. It is not only a pleasure but life.
—Sri Barkat Ram Chadha, Delhi.
I have been following all Thy instructions through the precious books and the Gita that are with me as Thy personal teachings and have found so much contentment and peace in my daily walk of life.
—Dr. Miss Radha Kannan, Coimbatore.
On my return from Ranikhet and Nainital, I got the holy Prasad in the shape of Your books sent by Your Holiness so kindly. Thy photo is full of dynamic force, how much more Thy personality! Pranams and again Pranams and again Pranams. I feel Your Holiness is silently preparing me for something which can be neither defined nor described.
—Sri Vidyananda, Allahabad.
I had informed and expressed my inability to control the habit of smoking and requested Your Holiness to control the same. Now, You have controlled it very nicely. I am freed from smoking since 9th May, 1954. Kindly bless me and guide me from within.
—Sri G.R. Patil, Poona.
I was an inmate of Your Ashram for nearly a month since the last week of September, 1953. I took a real liking for You, a feeling that has not faded away.
I told You when we met what had brought me to Your Ashram, a dream in which my Tantrik Guru was suddenly transformed into Yourself. I had previously come out in touch with You, before this actual meeting, only through Your articles in ‘My Magazine of India’ and a couple of Your books, a translation of ‘Anandalahari’.
—Sri N.K. Sen Gupta, Allahabad.
Most accidentally and miraculously I am writing this letter to You. When I was determined to make an end of my life, when I was about to commit suicide because of my long sufferings, I accidentally came across Your Journal and there came a change in my determination and a will to write to You about my past history and seek Your advice.
—Sri Harindra Chandra De, Calcutta.
With great humility, I am extremely happy to write to You that the holy Mahamrityunjaya Mantra had cured my disease completely and I am now completely all right in my health. I am continuing the Japa as per Your instructions.
—Miss R. Ponnammal, Madurai.
Swamiji, my old professional colleague, is at present the sage, savant and guide of all the temporal and spiritual pursuits. The execution of my plans for ‘Reorientation of domestic medical relief within doors of the ailing and the sick without loss of much money and time and energy’ is made quite easy by Your books entitled ‘Bazar Drugs’, ‘Home Physician’, ‘First Aid’, ‘Practice of Nature Cure’, ‘Practical Household Remedies’.
—Dr. H.W. Hingorani, Bhavnagar.
While perusing Your valuable religious literature, I am in profound happiness.
—Sri M.S. Raj, Begumpet.
You cannot imagine the joy Your letter gave me. It is like nectar. It is enough to rouse my hopes to carry on the work I am doing. The letter is indeed life-giving containing the best, the noblest precepts of life.
—Dr. J.E. Frenchman, Poona.
It was a miracle to find my lost relative after Your Darshan and Prasad and special blessings, on the opposite side of the Ganga. My faith in You is increasing day by day.
—Dr. B.D. Garg, Imlikhera.
Though I have not been regular in my Sadhana, yet by the Grace of the Great Sage of Ananda Kutir, I have been able to withstand the worldly hardships with patience and perseverance and have been blessed with calmness and faith in the Lord.
What an amount of spiritual transformation has been brought about in me and my wife by the Grace of the Satguru; and the burden of gratitude is so great that it is not repayable by us mortals. The great Sage has helped hundreds and thousands to cross the ocean of Samsara, and I too, though undeserving according to my own want of merits, aspire to get lifted across this ocean by the help of the Satguru, the ocean of mercy.
—Sri Krishnalal Sharma, New Delhi.
This morning something extraordinary happened. One of those Staff Officers in charge of the safety arrangements during Your visit to Ceylon in 1950, called over an hour, we discussed about Your Holiness and Your Mission in life. He is a Singhalese Catholic and wanted a book on Yoga by You. I readily promised. On return home, I was happily surprised to see the latest book ‘The Life and Work’ on my table with Your ever-flowing love and blessings. Kindly accept my grateful thanks for this valuable gift.
—Sri K. Ranachandra, Colombo.
I was in the hospital. Sri Sedlackova informed all Your disciples about my illness so that they were able to think of me in their meditations and thus I was capable of accepting the ‘Prana’ which was being sent to me and was helping me a great deal. Constantly I kept repeating ‘Om’ and then able to practise Japa and by intensive effort of realising Your Presence and by the mental aid of all Your disciples who kept sending the Prana to me, my health condition improved to such an extent that on February 16th the due operation which was very serious, could be carried out. I, however, kept repeating, during the whole period in which I was carried to the operation theatre and finally in the operation theatre itself, Om Namah Sivaya, precisely following Your ‘Japa Yoga’. The operation lasted for the whole hour and I felt no pain at all, nor after the operation was over. So by constant repetition of the Name of the Lord, I surprised all the physicians, for the wound in my stomach as well as in the uretic bladder both resulting from the operation and which were 10 c.m. long, healed to the astonishment of all the physicians in 13 days. On the day I was leaving the hospital there was still lying a man, who was operated on January 15th for the same defect and his wound was still suppurating. I was told by the head physician that my speedy recovery happens to be one out of hundred cases and the second head physician said my case was one of the thousand ones so successfully healed. For this miracle, I may thank only You, dear Guru, due namely by constant effort of realising Your presence and then by permanent repetition of the Japa Yoga.
—Sri F.V. Zlabek, Czechoslovakia.
I am a T.B. patient in the hospital for three years. By reading Your spiritual books and pamphlets from one of Your devotees, I am very much inspired. Beloved Swamiji, I am feeling much pleasant in life also. Please pray for me and through Swamiji’s Blessings, I will be saved. My prostration to Thy feet.
—Sri Chengiah Reddy, Natal.
It is a great comfort to feel that You help me. You are a marvellous blessing on the path of so many. On the sixth day after sending You my first letter, I suddenly felt a stronger faith in me. From that day I experienced a progress in my health. Your very first thought (on receipt of my letter) has surely produced this blessed effect and it lasts to make my spiritual efforts more effective. Now that all my sorrows and cares are behind, I devote more time for meditation and prayers.
—Sri J. Banmann, Switzerland.
His Holiness Jagadguru...is no doubt doing great work. But it is nothing compared to what Sri Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj has been doing single-handed. I feel that every time I visit the Ashram, the activities there have multiplied manifold after my previous visit. An Income-Tax Commissioner also expressed the same view. He also said Swamiji attends to thousand letters a day. The Ashram and the world-wide work of Sri Swamiji Maharaj have been growing not from day to day, but from hour to hour, from moment to moment. This is really the work of unequalled and incomparable Chit-Sakti.
—H.H. Prativadi-Bhayankara Annangaracharya Swami, Srirangam.
I do not know how to express my joy at the blessings conferred on me in the shape of such valuable books sent to me by Your Holiness. I also feel elated by Swamiji’s kind invitation to me to visit the Ashram and bathe in its spiritual atmosphere. May the great Nada-Brahman grant me such an opportunity soon.
—Prof. R. Srinivasan, Mylapore.
Two days ago I saw Swamiji in a dream and in the dream Swamiji gave me something to drink for health. Gurudev, I want to dedicate my life to Your feet. My only desire is to get You in the form of Guru in all my Janmas. It will be fulfilled only by Your Kripa. Please give me courage.
—Sivananda-Shanti, Dehra Dun.
I have read ‘Sure Ways for Success in Life and God-Realisation’. It is the best wealth of philosophy; it has ever been my good fortune to obtain.
—Sri M.W. Atherton, England.
Thou art the Wonder of wonders and joy everlasting. Thy kindness towards us is unlimited.
—Sri Kedarnath Ananda, New Delhi.
A soul-stirring and inspiring message coming direct from Gurudev, the Eternal fountain-head of Bliss and Divine Love for all true spiritual aspirants would thrill me throughout my life.
During my last plasty operation involving the cutting and removal of five ribs, I prayed for Guru-Kripa and intense Guru-Bhakti and as a result Gurudev’s Grace protected me from danger.
Hence I pray fervently and humbly appeal to Gurudev Maharaj to kindly send me an inspiring message with his love, guidance and blessings. And from the possession of which, a treasure of incalculable value for me, I can draw perennial inspiration to all my further humble devoted service to the distressed and afflicted.
—Sri P.D. Narayanaswamy, Perundurai.
The feelings of leaving the Ashram were the same as one would feel when leaving one’s home. I enjoyed every minute of my stay in Your Divine Company and it is a pleasure to meet Your wonderful jewels and talk things over.
Pearce-Gervis has written a nice chapter in his latest book about the Ashram, it was very pleasant to read the manuscripts.
It is the conviction of my experience that Swami Sivananda is a universal God-realised prophet. He has no equal in this present age.
—Major-General A.N. Sharma, Kangra Valley.
I am glad to inform You that my visit to Your Holiness has very much improved my health and mind. I attribute it to Your spirituality.
What wonderful work You have been doing there! You are verily keeping the Gates of Heaven wide open for all who are fortunate enough to come under Your Grace.
—Sri V. Bhashyam Aiyangar, Madras.
Since my association with Your Holiness it has been possible for me to get rid of many of my negative qualities. The encouragements that I am receiving from Your Holiness are thrilling indeed.
—Sri V.K. Nair, Bombay.
The irresistible Divine urge from within is so intense that I am unconsciously drawn to Your Holy Presence without which I feel I have lost the light of my life.
—Sri G.S.N. Moorty, Kharagpur.
The good and holy and delightful affection Sri Gurudev extended to this humble self is due to His being the ‘Lord of Love and Mercy’. His Holy Lotus-feet are my refuge. His Holy Self is my Light and Salvation. His Grace will lift me up. Otherwise by my own weight, I will sink myself down to the lowest depths. I feel truly wonderful and blessed indeed, that this humble self has become a ‘Patra’ for His Prema. It is due to the generosity and infinite greatness of my Gurudev. Let my heart be filled with humility so that I may become worthy of his love. His is Divine Incarnation of Love-for-all. His sweet love is my true happiness and security in spiritual life.
—Sri R.R. Joshi, Madras.
According to Swamiji’s instructions I was repeating Mrityunjaya Mantra regularly and observing ‘Somavara Vrata’ and now I am glad to inform Swamiji, my husband Mr. Ramnath has completely recovered from his illness. I cannot describe the power of Mrityunjaya Mantra. It is simply wonderful. The doctor and all others are simply astonished at the quick and sudden recovery. The attack was a very serious one. I can say it is only because of the Grace of all my Gurus, my husband was cured.
I am longing to visit Rishikesh and have Swamiji’s Darshan and have some spiritual instructions from Swamiji. I hope fully that Swamiji will guide me on my spiritual path. I have completely surrendered myself to the Lotus-Feet of Swamiji.
—Smt. Sharada, Hyderabad.