Living with Baba

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Living with Baba
Dada Parashivanandaji

One day in 1969, Baba gave a demonstration on spirituality. A dada named Parashivanandaji, who sat close to Him, thought to himself, "I would like to know about my past life."

Baba looked at Parashivananandji and asked, "Why do you want to know your past life?" Baba then called another dada and told him to sit in the proper posture. With His stick Baba touched dada's ajina cakra and said, "Now concentrate on him (Dada Parashivananda) and take his mind back five years in time, ten years, and then twenty years and continue until you have gone back sixty years in time." Then, Baba asked, "What are you seeing?"

Dada replied that he saw a coconut tree. Baba told him to concentrate still more deeply. Then dada said, "I am seeing a coconut, Baba."

Baba told him, "Now take his mind more than two hundred years back.....Now what are you seeing?"

Dada replied, "There is a large pond, and on one side of the pond is a tree. Under that tree are some cement steps. A boy is sitting on those steps, and he is crying." Baba then instructed, "Now return to the normal state and meditate."

Baba explained the incident. He said that there was a saint who passed through a small village. Some of the villagers approached the saint and told him about a small boy of two years who had recently lost both parents, leaving him without anyone to look after him. They said that as the boy did not have any close relatives, a neighbor gave him shelter. They informed the saint that he could take the boy with him if he wished.

The saint decided to take the boy back with him to his hermitage and looked after him with loving care. He gave him sufficient education to enable him to read and write. The most important thing he gave him, however, was spiritual guidance. By the age of ten years, the boy had become very intelligent and was very regular in his spiritual practices. The saint guided the boy in such a way that he gained control of most of his vrttis and organs. The boy had only one problem, however. Sometimes, he could not control his greed for food. Under the guru's strict vigilance, he slowly learned to control that particular propensity.

This saint was also the guru of the king. The king had no children. The king and the queen were both very devoted to their guru. One day the guru decided to test the boy to see whether he had developed his self-confidence and responsibility. He told the boy, "I am going somewhere for a few days. You are to take care of everything." At that time, the boy was perhaps thirteen or fourteen years old. The guru told him in particular, "Don't accept anything from outside and don't take any food from outside. You must only take the food available to you in the ashram." With those instructions, the guru left on his journey.

After two or three days, the queen and her retinue went to the ashram to meet the guru. She brought many valuable presents for him. The young boy told her, "Mother, guruji has gone somewhere. After guruji returns, please come again and give him everything directly."

But the queen was rather superstitious. She did not want to take back her gifts. She told the boy, "I offered all these things in the name of guruji. So I cannot take them back."

Again, the boy said, "Guruji is not here, so I cannot accept these gifts."

The queen replied, "Well, in that case, I will wait for him. I will put up my tent and camp. I will wait here with my people."

The boy thought to himself that this was, indeed, a big problem. He wondered how he could avoid this difficult situation. After a while, he went to the queen and said, "Mother, there is a way to resolve the problem, if acceptance of the gifts is the main issue. I will accept something as a token of your benevolence. Then, you will be able to return home with everything else. When guruji returns, you can return and give him everything yourself."
The queen thought that this was an excellent solution to the problem. She proceeded to bring everything and laid them before the simple boy. She wanted to give him gold and many costly things. But the boy politely refused them. The queen was, of course, a little frustrated, but replied, "Well, please take whatever you like."

Amongst the variety of costly things spread before him was a coconut. The boy told the queen that he would take the coconut as a gift.

Meanwhile, the queen observed that he was not only calm, quiet and pure, but that he had no desire for any worldly things. Seeing this, she unconsciously developed a motherly instinct for the boy and desired to have him as a son. As she offered the coconut to the sweet, sentient boy, the thought uppermost in her mind was to have the boy as her own son.

The boy accepted the coconut thinking that there would be no problem in taking such an inexpensive item. The queen offered the coconut without brahmabhava. And the boy too accepted the coconut without brahmabhava. Owing to this, their desires and samskaras converged and affected each other. The queen left the ashram and returned to her palace with all her presents. The strong desire to have the boy as her son kept recurring.

Within a few days, however, the queen suddenly became very ill and died. She died thinking of the boy. Meanwhile, the guru returned, and found the boy suffering from a stomach ailment. He asked if everything was alright. The boy replied, "Yes, guruji, but I have a stomach problem."

The guru asked him, "Did you take anything from outside?" The boy replied he had not. The guru repeated this question three times and for three times, the boy answered in the negative.

By his spiritual power the guru discovered that the boy had accepted the coconut as a gift from the queen.

Again, the guru asked him what had happened in his absence. The boy still did not mention anything about the coconut. The guru then became very angry and commanded, "You did not obey my order and consumed a coconut presented by the queen. As you disobeyed my instructions, I want you to leave my ashram immediately!" Thus, the poor boy was compelled to leave the ashram.

For the boy, the ashram and his guruji were everything! Where would he go? By this time, the pain in his stomach had become severe. He then left the ashram premises and walked tearfully to a nearby pond. There he sat down and cried incessantly. The next day, the boy died from his stomach ailment.

Baba explained that in his next life, he was reborn as a coconut tree. And in the life after that, he became this very dada. And the queen from his previous life became his mother in his present life.

It is not that the guru cursed the boy he loved so much. What happened was the natural and universal law of creation. Baba has stated very clearly in the Supreme Command that "for those who perform sadhana twice a day regularly, the thought of Parama Purusa will certainly arise in their minds at the time of death. Their liberation is a sure guarantee." This sweet and sentient boy could not understand that only because he disobeyed his guru's instructions and accepted the coconut, he developed the stomach problem, which ultimately caused his death. His guru had made his mind and body so pure and sensitive that he could not take any food given by a person having a strong mundane desire for rebirth. The guru desired very much for this sweet boy to get liberation in that life itself. However, the queen wanted him as her son. In other words, she wanted his rebirth. This is a very subtle spiritual science and its dynamics was not known to the young boy.

After telling this long story, Baba asked Dada Parashivananda, "Do you remember anything regarding your birth?"

Dada Parashivananda replied, "Yes, Baba. At the time of delivery, my mother was almost unconscious. In that state she had a dream. In the dream she saw a coconut coming down from heaven. She embraced that coconut, whereupon I was born."

Then, Baba said, "You finished your samskara as a
coconut tree. Now she took back the coconut and finished her samskara too. Parama Purusa will now take care of everything of yours!"
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