After returning from the Goshala, we all freshened up and headed to the dining hall. Since there was already a batch of people dining at that time, we waited outside until they were done. Meanwhile, someone greeted us from a distance and upon looking closely, found out that it was P, who was introduced to us by sister V on our last trip. I greeted him back and told him about our new apartment and that we were here for its housewarming.
He congratulated us and said, “Very glad that you have finally become residents of Jillellamudi.”
I just smiled in response.
“Is it something that we have newly become? Aren’t we all in Mother’s lap already? Where else can we go other than being here?” my soul whispered.
Extending the conversation, I complimented him for his melodious voice, for, during our last visit, we heard him sing nee mamathala pandiri needalo… (in your affectionate care and shelter…) along with his female students, who also sang well.
He replied, “My voice has changed slightly with age, it used to be even better earlier. I sang a countless number of songs in Mothers’s presence. Once, when Mother was in Eluru, one lakh people came seeking her blessings. I was fortunate enough to sing in front of such a big audience. Now, due to old age, I can no longer sing like before. Next month, we have sister Hyma’s birth anniversary celebrations coming up, where I am going to release my songs as a DVD. Please do join us for the event.”
I told him that I would try.
Meanwhile, three stray dogs started playing around us in that open area. Looking at them, P said recollecting the past incidents, “There is a great misconception that human birth is above all other kinds of births, but that is not true. Because, there are many loathsome beings among humans and on the contrary, we also find animals that are noble. Mother herself confirmed this and we too have witnessed this for ourselves. I have been visiting her since my childhood, so I have seen many such incidents in her presence.”
Many animals like dogs, cats, rats, monkeys and snakes used to move about freely in Mother’s presence, forgetting their natural enmity. We are eyewitnesses to many such peculiar incidents. Among Mother’s disciples, there used to be a very talented photographer who used to take pictures of Mother. In the evenings, Mother used to sit on a cot, outside in the open air, and we sat around her on the floor. On one such evening, while the photographer (who also believed that human birth is noble) was taking random photographs, something very interesting happened.
A dog came and sat near Mother and kept staring at her, just as we were. Our photographer brother had been watching the whole scene through his camera lens. After a while, he noticed that the dog looked motionless and somewhat inanimate. After observing the dog for a while, the photographer decided to go near and check on the dog for himself. When he went to the dog, it was very still and rigid, he checked for its breath and was flabbergasted to find no sign of breathing. He turned towards Mother only to find her looking at him with a warm smile. The photographer then understood that Mother could bless both humans and animals alike with samadhi, with a mere wish of hers.
As soon as he understood this, Mother moved her left foot in a peculiar manner, in response to which, the dog came out of samadhi, resumed breathing and started moving about normally.
Similarly, there used to be a cat, which used to come every now and then, sit in front of Mother and make prolonged sounds like ‘Oooo’. When asked why the cat was making such sounds, Mother told the disciples that the cat was chanting the sound of Om. In those days, this area used to be full of bushes and trees and the cat used to live in one of those bushes. Only once in every 15 days would it eat the food offered by us and rest of the days, it spent it’s time fasting and meditating inside the bushes and would come out occasionally, chant Om near Mother and go back into the bushes again.
Likewise there used to be a monkey, which was very big and almost the height of a human. We used to perform the worship of Sandhya in Mothers’ presence every morning. This monkey used to come and sit along with others and wait patiently until the whole ritual was finished, then it would stand in line to touch the feet of Mother, take prasad and leave. It behaved more like a human being. When it passed away, Mother herself performed the last rites. It was cremated at the end of this very street. After the cremation, Mother said that some day there will be Lord Hanuman’s temple in this place.
Many years after Mother left her mortal body, it so happened that one fine morning, an idol of Lord Hanuman was found lying in that very place. Someone must have left it there. We constructed a small temple, where the idol was found. As it has already turned dark now, you may visit the temple during the day.”
We were quite surprised to hear about a monkey following religious discipline, standing in a line to take Mother’s blessing and quietly participating in Sandhya worship, whereas even people these days do not care to stand in the lines. Seeing the astonishment in our eyes, P said that he wasn’t exaggerating; these incidents were indeed witnessed by everyone around Mother, not just him. He then continued to narrate another interesting story about an Ox.
“Back in those days, Jillellamudi was like a jungle, with neither electricity, road connectivity nor water supply. The Ox used to roam all around the hamlet during the day but by the sun down, it used to return to Mother’s place, sit near her cot, guard her all night and again at sunrise, it used to go away on its own. Many a time, we all used to sleep around mother’s cot for the entire night by spreading some sheets on the ground. Snakes would roam about freely around here in those days. But still we used to sleep on the floor in the night, neither were we afraid of them nor did they harm any of us. The Ox used to come around midnight, walk carefully to Mother without stepping on any of us and affectionately greet her. Then it would walk back to its spot which was a few feet away from Mother’s cot and guarded her through the night.
Before 1950, Mother used to live in a hut. It is the same place where we now see a Shiva temple. There used to be a snake burrow inside the hut, in which lived a white cobra. It used to sit quietly while mother cooked food but moved along with her when she did the household chores. Some of the people who witnessed this are still alive today. Back then Mother had nothing to give to those who came to visit her. So, she used to give them the dirt from snakes burrow as prasad. It had a very unique and soothing fragrance and was believed to have therapeutic properties too.”
Quoting such incidents, P concluded, “Not only humans, but also animals were fortunate enough to receive Mother’s love and affection. They used to be way more disciplined and well behaved than any human. Who are these souls? Why were they born as animals? And why did they want to be in Mother’s company? Answers to these are best known to Mother alone. But, she would not talk about them with others. She used to say, “They have come to me, just like all of you.” And she showered the same love upon them, as she did on us and treated us all alike.”
Many spiritually advanced and highly evolved souls also take birth as animals to clear some of their bad karma remaining from their past lives. It happens even in the case of great yogis, which is why we should never look down upon any animal or bird, not even a bug or insect.
As we were talking, the earlier batch of people who dined before us started leaving. P bid us goodbye and headed his way. We entered the dining hall to have our dinner.
All rights reserved. This article has been translated by Dr. Sri Bhargavi, which was originally posted in teluguyogi.net on October 25, 2018. The content or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express permission of the publisher.