It is said that those who are dear to the one who is dear to you, become dear to you also. This is true, and we realized this in those early days when we gathered together as Babaji’s devotees. Babaji was a well-known saint, and he had a very large number of devotees who constituted the members of his large family. When I was inducted as a new incumbent, I was taken as one of them and promised my share of the accumulated treasures. The share was liberally given, and even now it continues to come although I am staying at home.
Every devotee enjoyed the treasures — the joy and serenity emanating from Babaji. One need not be in his presence for enjoying it. Getting together with devotees, hearing and sharing each other’s experiences and remembering Babaji, was enough to give us joy, although we were away from him and did not meet him often. This goes on even now. When devotees meet, we rekindle the love in each other’s hearts for our guru and take our share. So long as the spokes are linked to the nave, the chariot moves.
This is not something exclusive for Babaji’s devotees. The same thing happens with the disciples of all great saints. There is much to learn and enjoy when you come in contact with the devotees of Ramana Maharshi or Shri Aurobindo or Ram Thakur. Although the saints took their samadhi many years ago, the devotees keep their gurus alive in their hearts.
Whatever I have received from Baba or receive from him now, I am not very conscious of it, as I am seldom conscious of the breeze entering a room through the open window. But I remember well what I received from his great devotees. A large part of the knowledge or experience I have of Babaji has come from them. Some of them may have doubted how far this can be accepted as true, but so far as I am concerned, I accept and believe it. I could not doubt the authenticity of the experiences which came to some chosen devotees while fully awake. They are as true to me as those which I saw with my own eyes or in which I participated. Some extraneous elements might have been mixed up with the main theme, but that does not mean that they are to be rejected outright. There are always the husks coming with the corn, or the skin with the banana, but you do not throw away the corn or the banana. You separate the substance from the cover before using it. So a true devotee of Babaji knows what is genuine and what is spurious accretion when he hears the experiences of other devotees. He takes what passes his test and leaves the rest. This is how I got the benefit of my satsang with his devotees.
- Excerpt from The Near and the Dear by Dada Mukerjee