Who am I:
'Past karmas lead us to a destiny which has to be fulfilled' .. Don’t even know the exact point where the old 'Abha' died and I emerged as the pure, positive jeevatma totally surrendered to my Parmatma, ShreeNathji..
I was born and continue to live in Mumbai, India. Graced with four lovely children, I live my life in total surrender to my Prabhu ShreeNathji.
श्रीनाथजी शरणम मम:
Shree Thakurjee ShreeNathji’s kripa keeps us close to Him at all moments.
Spiritual awakening and final Diksha:
Unknowing to me, I was already on a spiritual path in as early as 1992/93. It took 10 years of purification in mind, body, habits, health and emotions, for me to consciously understand this reality and by 2002, I found myself entering the depth of what awaited me in the divine dimensions.
My initial diksha in September 2004 became the conscious turning point in my life.
As I went deeper in meditations and encountered the Divine flow within; did I understand that the unknown lack which I felt all through my life was for the Divine; and mistakenly I searched for it in the outer dimensions.
My final diksha was on the 16th August of 2005, my 49th birthday, and it felt as though I was being born into a new reality of myself.
I’ve been very privileged to receive this final diksha from a guru as sattvik as Shri Sudhir bhai. On that extraordinary day, Gurushree was present with strong divine energy flowing ‘live’ through him. With the Divine flow His left palm becomes a medium for Shree Thakurjee's Divine Love and Kripa. ShreeNathji Prabhu always accompanies him when some important adhyatmik karya needs to be completed.
WHO BLESSED ME? WHO GAVE ME THE FINAL DIKSHA? WHOM DID I SURRENDER MYSELF TO?
From this day my true adhyatmik yatra began; and what an apurv (extraordinary) anubhuti it has been!
As divy kripa enters deep within, it feels as if this divine Urja is performing an abhishek on this Tan, Man and Atma (mind,body,soul). Since then, Thakurjee's kripa has been clearing and purifying me of all past sanskars which are deeply embedded in the Antaratma; from my journey of birth and re birth.
It is a karmic and soul cleansing, which helps create the deepest of positive changes.
As a seeker:
Few years ago, after my initial diksha in 2004, did I understand this inner voice, which was my soul as it tried to awaken me to myself; to make me aware of my inner reality. I do remember brushing aside this inner call ; but then it always gave rise to a lot of emptiness and some questioning;
At such moments I recall complaining to Prabhu too , “If You want me to move towards my soul awareness, why did You put me in such responsibility ridden situations as it would not be right to give up my present life karma and walk towards my inner identity”.
As Shree Krishn in Bhagvad Gita tells us:
“Wherever one has been placed in the present is all due to the past karmic Len-Den (give and take). Renunciation is only of expectations, actions have to be performed to the best and together with the results offered at feet of the Divine”.
The pavitra word of Shree Krishn does not permit any soul to move away from their present karmic situations.
With time I understood how to live in this world totally and yet be a witness to all.
‘Renunciation is only of expectations, actions have to be performed to the best and together with the results offered at the feet of the Divine’.
‘Who am I, what does my heart actually long for’; this question kept nagging at my heart.
किसे ढूँढ रही थी, क्या पाने की चेष्टा कर रही थी .. बहुत वर्षों के बाद समझ में आया।
“Do not forget the real purpose of your life”, is what Gurushree encouraged me to follow; “This adhyatmic yatra will be an extraordinary period where the truth and reality unfolds before you. The ‘Mayic’ world is nothing before all the elevated experiences; as once you’ve tasted the ‘Amrut’ (Ishwar Prem), all other flavours lose their attractions. Very few seekers are able to pass through all tests and cross the mayic hurdles. Don’t give up your search for truth and Ishwar. Stay on the path with determination; soon you will be rewarded with the experience of ‘ShreeNathji’ (Ishwar)".
In this journey of purification came a change of awareness and perceptions in which I had to ask Prabhu,
“Am I going mad, or is ‘this’ world insane”
The experiences are so out of our normal regular routine life.
The awakened soul:
Few years ago I added a name to my existing Abha Shahra.
This earlier ‘personality name’ Abha Shahra, described only my mind and body; but now with deep connection to my awakened soul, it required that I add an extra dimension to the already existing outer personality name.
So with Shree Thakurjee's kripa and approval from Gurushree I add ‘Shyama’; this is the name for the awakened soul in total purity and bhakti, the DOT from where I am connected to Prabhu, ShreeNathji. In a way it would be a name ShreeNathji chose for me.
Abha-Shahra is the Mind-Body; ‘Shyama’ represents my awakened ‘Soul’.
‘… With the Divine Shreeji, the brilliance of His light drowns me in total devotion and there is no where else I want to go; the ‘here and now’ is all I need to fulfil the soul journey. The energy flow is stronger; there are the various inner fragrances that I experience. The body is never left alone, can always feel some work being done by this mysterious force, which seems to have taken possession of this body and mind: making it purer and more sattvik…’
I have learnt to live my life on the highest truth,
‘No matter what others say or think; if your intentions are right do not be afraid; Do not stop walking on your adhyatmik marg only because some people lack the right understandings. There are moments when you have to follow the soul’s demands towards your truth, so keep moving on'.
Initial divine interactions with Thakurjee which ignited my bhakti and magnetised my soul to ShreeNathji.
In total surrender to Divine ShreeNathji;
When in the deepest of meditations, as I experienced the Presence of Divine ShreeNathji-Shree RadhaKrishn, He had declared, “You are my ‘best friend’ and you will be the only ‘friend’ I will ever have”. (details in varta section). As Their kripapaatr I have been a sakshi to many spiritual mysteries; which unveiled for me.
I first visited ShreeNathji Haveli at Nathdwara in 2004 October with Gurushree. My second visit to Nathdwara, which was from 16th to18th February 2005, became the turning point of my life.
The 16th to 18th February 2005 was like a trip to another level of being. It now seems like a dream; the experience was so alokik, so out of this world, so different from what we think as reality.
The 60 hours spent at Nathdwara, in the close vibrational level of Gurushree Sudhir bhai; who happens to be closely associated with Prabhu ShreejiBaba took me to a very different level of anubhuti.
I spent those 50 hours in close proximity of a jeevatma who is the unmanifest form of the Deity whose darshans we had gone for. I had never ever imagined that darshans could have such a powerful impact on the chit, atma, mansikta.
We did a total of 14 darshans at the Haveli with a visit to the Gaushala on both days, without which every yatra is incomplete. I had hardly slept in these 2 days, so I must’ve been awake for a total of 36 hours with a sleep time of 3-4 hours. Surprisingly there was no tiredness and I did not feel the need to rest in between.
Gurushree Sudhir bhai always insisted on the highest purity between each darshan; if we had gone out of the mandir showering with the aura cleansing ‘paste’ was a must; so in the two days I must’ve showered at least 10-12 times.
I had never been so close to such high levels of purity and one pointedness in bhao before this.
It was like being on a ‘high’ without any intoxicants. The craziest part was that I didn’t want to come back to reality (routine life). Somewhere deep within I wished and hoped time stops and I continue repeating the 2 days over and over. There was no tushti, no trupti ! (satiation).
I learnt the importance of maintaining complete purity of mind, body and soul; in thoughts, clothes, foods, and conversations too.
Till now I had never been introduced to this sattvik level of doing darshans at any mandir.
A sakshat divy anubhuti is very important, but for which sampoorn shraddha is required to help lift the mayic- avran (veils). Once our own shraddha, astha is awakened, spiritual reality becomes a part of daily reality. 'The truth' is there right in front of our eyes to be experienced and digested which cannot be expressed in words, as the impact can be felt only if one opens the Self to it.
My next 5 day yatra to Nathdwara was in September 2005.
In these yatras, there is no TV, newspapers, or phone calls. It’s mostly a total cut off from the outside, except when required for essentials. Food is very simple, and maximum time spent at the mandir with SHREEJI BABA.
We did a total of 40 darshans this time, with the Gaushala visit everyday.
The ‘Who am I’, gets connected to my conscious mind and pushes me to go deeper in this quest for the truth.
From my personal journal..
.. Since back from Nathdwara, every time when sitting in the ‘mudras’, there are tears; not of sorrow, but of longing; An incredible longing of wanting to experience myself; of Vrindavan, of the different ‘vans’, Bhandir Van, Seva kunj, Nikunj van, Shyam Van, Banshi Vat; that sacred Vraj bhumi, the Kadamb trees, above all Giriraj Govardhan where even today ShreeNathji sakshatkars are there for the truly pure; the vibrational fragrance of the divine land; basically all the original atmosphere, all the darshans etc…Want to return there; when I realise,
What am I asking for?
Yes, there are memories of sometime, of some ‘time period’, and desire to be able to travel back in time, this separation from ShreeKrishn; from these profoundly intense energies in whose Presence everything feels so vibrant; is felt at every moment..
This electricity, this energy, this purity and this devotion and love, which fill me, are adbhut. Despite all outer inner hindrances, the Divine entered my life and with that, search for the 'knower' began.
'Dhyan - Meditations are intense; Sometimes I feel as if I’m there but not there..
In those deepest moments, I I find myself in a state where I forget myself as myself – as this personality. I enter an extraordinary state of being.
It feels so divine and pure, and I want to extend the pure blissful moments forever and ever.
दिव्य अनुभूति के अनमोल क्षण, इस आनन्दमय पल को हमेशा के लिए अपने भीतर समेत कर रख लूँ।
My connection to Vraj Mandal:
I am fortunate enough to travel often to Vraj Mandal (The land of Divinity) and love being at Shri Govardhan and Vrindavan. I feel deep anand and bliss here at Vraj Mandal; the vibrancy and magnetism of Vrindavan is unimaginable.
Vraj is the place where I belong and is my real home… My soul finds an aseemit Shanti and Anand in this divine land of ShreeNathji, Shree RadhaKrishn.
व्रज ही मेरा ठिकाना है, मेरा लक्ष है, मेरा अंतिम पड़ाव है।यहीं से प्रभु के भीतर समा जाएँ और इस पृथ्वी लोक से विदा लें।
My first visit to Vraj after my diksha was in June 2005.
Again similar to the Nathdwara yatras, discipline and purity in all aspects of living are to followed completely.
For ‘The Presence’ to be experienced an atmosphere of purity and our own bhao is very essential. When in the pure sanigdh (company) of a Sadhya guru who is a part of the Divine Himself and also known as the divya guru; the strong pure aura which surrounds him also has the capacity and strength to cover the humans around him in the particular area. This at times can open their soul to some divine experiences. It is his soul quality which connects the particular soul to the divya (divine) soul and graces it with some divya anubhuties (divine experiences).
This was the yatra when ShreeNathji Appeared from His Mukharwind at Shri Govardhan and gave us sakshat (direct) darshans in His ‘Lalan’ (child) swarup.
This was as per Gurushree’s request. ShreeNathji did also let us take His photos as He Appeared from His Mukharwind as proof of His Presence. The vibrations and emotions of that extraordinary hour are always fresh in my heart and mind.
(Detailed Varta on this happening can be read in the Varta section of this website)
The other anubhuti that stands out from several others is how ShreeNathji gave hukum to do the ‘Jirnodhar’ of His Charan’ mandir at Banshi Vat. This divine sthal at Vrindavan is where the famous divya Maha raas of Shree RadhaKrishn took place.
From my personal journal .. At Radha/Shyam Kund;
During this divine pujan, as I put the pujan sindoor and tilak in Shree RadhaKrishn mandir, the eternal question, WHO AM I is in my mind; such intensity and Bhao I have never experienced before, such total acceptance of me as myself; as the truth about my identity...Purity of the whole pujan and the connected vision clears many things; such moments of pujan become memorable, I call them soul presence, as there is nothing of the mind and body present at the time of darshans; it is ourselves, as the true beings in the original identities which can only be experienced, not explained.
जब हम पूजन कर रहे होते हैं, कौन पूजन कर रहा है, कौन करवा रहा है, कौन इस क्षण में कृपा बिखेरे सब कुछ देख रहा है .. उस दिव्य पूजन की अनुभूति और उसका प्रसाद तन, मन, आत्मा को पता नहीं कितने जन्मों के संस्कार से छुटकारा दिल देता है और दिव्यता से आँचल भर देता है।
Below I describe that special anubhuti which confirms about ShreeNathji Shakti being awake after a gap of hundreds of years and out of His mandir, in our world:
19-20 September 2005
At Nathdwara, as I rested in the afternoon after Rajbhog darshans, this Divine happening, I experienced in full awareness. I experienced this incredible blissful darshans as a vision of me holding on to Shreeji’s little toes.
It is the Mangala darshan, at Shreeji’s Haveli. I can see myself there, pressing Shreeji’s feet, while He is having a conversation with me!
Shreeji is complaining to me how tired He gets standing every day.
“See, my Feet hurt soo much, but nobody presses Them. I think I might just leave Nathdwara and run away”.
I again ask Shreeji, “Shreeji, Your Arm must be hurting also. Since Hundreds of years You have been holding up Your Udhva Bhuja”. (Left Arm as He lifted Giriraj Govardhan)
Shreeji replies, “Yes, you are very right, My Left Arm also hurts”.
And Incredibly, at that moment;
SHREEJI BRINGS HIS LEFT BUHJA DOWN AND CARESSED MY HEAD AND FACE IN ALOKIK LOVE AND BLESSING.
What name can I give to such an alokik anubhav!
This close encounter lasted for a whole 45 minutes.
I woke up and was so lost in this experience; I had to ask Gurushree about it.
It seemed he already knew about it and silenced me, telling me not to mention it to anyone for the time being.
Gurushree explained to me, “These are real darshans and you were not dreaming”.
It was for sure a real happening, or else how am I able to actually feel that touch from Shreeji’s Udhva Bhuja even after all these years. Till today I am able to feel Shreeji’s tender, gentle hand on my head and the extraordinary Divya Urja that came from Shreeji.
This has to be some Grace and Kripa from my Gurushree and MahaGurushree ShreeNathji, that I have been the receiver of this Divine Love and Blessings.
19-20 September 2005
नाथद्वारा में, राजभोग दर्शन के बाद जब मैं आराम कर रही थी, पूर्ण जागृत स्थिति में यह दिव्य अनुभूति मुझे हुई. श्रीजी के छोटे, कोमल पग को पकडे हुऐ यह भाव मुझे कुछ अनोखे आनंदमय मन की स्थिति में हुआ।
श्रीनाथजी की हवेली में मंगला दर्शन हो रहे हैं और मैं श्रीजी के पग दबा रही हूँ। श्रीजी मुझसे वार्तालाप भी कर रहे हैं! श्रीजी मुझसे कह रहे हैं की वोह खड़े रहकर कितने थक गए हैं।
"देखो मेरे पग कितने दुखते हैं, कोई दबा के नहीं देता।मैं सोचता हूँ की नाथद्वारा छोड़ कर भाग जाऊं।
मैं फिर श्रीजी से पूछती हूँ , "श्रीजी, आप की उद्धव भुजा भी तो दुखती होगी? इतने सालों से आप ने ऊपर उठा कर रखी है"।
श्रीजी जवाब देते हैं, “तुम ठीक कहती हो. मेरी उद्धव भुजा भी दुखती है"।
आश्चर्यजनक रूप से उसी पल में;
श्रीजी उनकी उद्धव भुजा नीचे लाते है और मेरे सर पर बहुत अलोकिक प्रेम और दुलार से आशीर्वाद देते हैं.
ऐसे अलोकिक अनुभव को क्या नाम दे सकते हैं!
गुरुश्री मुझे समझाते हैं, “यह वास्तविक दर्शन हैं और तुम सपना नहीं देख रही थी”.
यह एक वास्तविक दर्शन ही हैं क्योंकि आज भी, जब मैं यह अनुभव लिख रही हूँ, या फिर इसके बारे में कभी सोचती हूँ, मुझे श्रीजी के कोमल हाथ अपने माथे पर महसूस होते हैं और मैं उसी दिव्य ऊर्जा के कम्पन का अहसास करती हूँ।
As a writer and photographer
As a serious seeker of the spiritual path, (just like many of you who are reading this), I enjoy sharing some of my spiritual experiences and personal thoughts with other seekers through my writings.
I also believe that:
Written words will only touch a reader and show direction to someone, when truth of experience flows from them. Only then the words will be powerful enough to pass any real understanding to any seeker. Experiential writing carries the power to transform and provide that gentle push, when a seeker may be drowning in the darkness of confusions and doubts.
“Each one has a destiny written for their life journey, don’t destroy your peace and joyful moments in trying to analyse the thoughts of the whole world; do the best for all in whatever capacity is possible, that’s your Dharm towards family and society; apart from this you have a higher Dharm; which is to reach the highest in yourself; and for that it is very important to stay in your own bliss”.
For me taking pictures is also a meditative moment. Never has a moment passed when I am without a camera on my yatras at Vraj and at ShreeNathji Gaushala. Many many moments have been captured and kept for future reference. This need to take a photo of every corner of Vraj is so deeply imbedded in me. Many Vrajvasi have commented on my photography; do I come to do darshans or take photos!!
In fact Gurushree and ShreeNathji Prabhu have joked about this obsession I have of carrying my camera everywhere. (This is only in Vraj and Nathdwara, nowhere else do I so faithfully carry a camera or take photos).
Shreeji makes a favorite joke about this many times, "आभा तू क्या करेगी अगर मैं अचानक तेरे सामने खड़ा हो गया? सुधीर देखना ये मुझे पक्का ऐसे ही बोलेगी, 'श्रीजी जरा ठहरो मैं कैमरा लेकर आती हूँ जाना मत',
And both Gurushree and Shreeji Baba have a good laugh with this joke every time.
Life is a journey of moments, each moment leading to another; the quality of life depending on how much awareness you live each moment with.
Photography is all about moments; Moments…in Life; A moment.. Or few moments.. 'एक पल .. या कुछ पल'
Each moment is special somewhere for someone in Parmatma's creation.
With warm regards and a blessing for all,
Lots of Love,
सर्व मंगल हो, सर्व शुभ हो, सर्व शांति हो!
Abha Shahra Shyama
Jai Shreeji! Shreeji Ki Jai Ho! Jai Shree RadhaKrishn
With the Divine showering His blessings on me, I look forward to this most fulfilling, blissful and exciting period of my life. This stage of life till I leave my body should be the most spiritually rewarding.
What normally the whole of mankind is running after is available to me and I believe I can transcend this human reality (as Abha Shahra) and reach for the highest in soul and energy levels.
It is not in ego, but in the truth that I believe; ‘It has to be some very great sattvik karmas of my past lives, because of which I have been selected by “Thakurjee”, Himself, for this experience of Divine Love and Spiritual devotions and bliss’.
प्रभु कृपा! I believe myself to be a mediator for some higher spiritual truths and mysteries, which have to unfold in this world of ours. ShreeNathji is very Alive around us; the distance experienced is only from our side.
“Very, very rare selected Vaishnavas are allowed to enter that kshetr (realm) where you have been invited”.
I am gently reminded often by Gurushree.
Jai Shree Hari