Swami Ananda deserves more mentioning. Just as Swamiji was observing me, I was also observing him.
Swamiji said, “Dekho Beta, many people are lost in this path, but I see that you’re going the right way. Your greatest quality is that you accept everything. But, you still need to travel a long distance on this path.”
Then he further elucidated his point: “I saw you sitting alone in the park. You could have been anyone – a murderer, a thief, a terrorist or a madman. Still, I invited you to my home. I still don’t know even your name, and now you’re in my bedroom. This is an approach of looking at others that you should also cultivate: Sarvamidam Khalam Bramha(The whole world is Bramha).
I said: I can also see that other people are trapped in their lifestyle. Swamiji said: Seeing is not enough, being happy for yourself is not enough, you should also help them out. Then he gave the examples of Buddha and Mahavira: They were helping other people until their last moment in their eighties. And I remembered Todke Baba of Shivapuri who once said: I’m happy. But now I feel like helping others in their pursuit of happiness.
I said to him: I also do not go to everyone’s house. I saw you and felt like there must be something in common between us. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have come to your house: Aham Bramha.
Then Swamiji asked me to visit an Ashram in Madhavpur. “There’s my one disciple there, observe him how he does things,” he said. And when I was in the Madhavpur Ashram, I found that Swamiji was already there. “So, it was all your trick. I’d not imagined that we’d meet again,” I said. Swamiji said: Aisa hota hai, beta. I’d also not planned this visit. Ye sab ‘happening’ me ho raha hai(everything is just happening).”
Then he explained his method of choiceless awareness.
Swamiji had asked me to stay in the Ashram for at least 3 days. However, I didn’t feel like staying there. When I was leaving, Swamiji took my hands in his hands and said smilingly: I won’t stop you if you don’t want to stay here. But once I catch someone’s hands, I don’t leave them easily.” And I also said smilingly: Swamiji, don’t forget that I’m also holding your hands. And I also don’t leave anyone that easily.”
Swamiji said: Mai us raah ki baat kar raha hoon, beta. (I’m talking abt ‘that’ path, son).
I said: Mai bhi usi raah ki baat kar raha hoon, swamiji.
Swamiji commanded immense respect from his people. But I was talking to him just like a friend. And Swamiji also seemed to enjoy my informal manners. Then he said: You also know that Sarvamidam Khalam Bramha. But, you don’t seem to care for others’ feelings. Mahasoos karo, beta.
It’s not difficult to find a Swamiji in India and Nepal. But I found that Swami Ananda had really attained a higher consciousness. You could see it in his being. In the way he spoke, and in the way he did did things.