A Pure & Perfect Love

During the summer of 1973 I was staying at my father’s farm in New Hampshire, and was there in September when the telegram arrived. My father and my stepmother, looking rather concerned, met me when I returned from shopping at the village. Dad said, “This telegram just came from India, don’t understand it, but I copied it down word for word as the operator gave it to me.”

“At 1:15, September 11, Babaji left his bojhay (sic) in Vrindaban…” The telegram went on with further details. My father asked, “What does it mean?”

“It means,” I said, “that Maharaji died.”

They immediately tried to console or at least commiserate with me, but their words seemed strangely irrelevant, for I felt absolutely nothing – neither sad nor happy. There was no sense of loss. Perhaps I was just numb. A couple with marital difficulties were waiting for me, so I went and sat with them and helped them unwind the tangle of thread of their loves and hatreds. Every now and then in the midst of the discussion, my mind would wander and I’d think, “Maharajji isn’t in his body. Isn’t that strange,” or “I wonder what will happen now?” But I pushed such thoughts aside and forced my consciousness back to the task at hand, for, whatever was to come, there was no sense in stopping service to others.

Throughout that day and many times thereafter I remembered the words of the great Ramana Maharshi. He was dying of cancer and in the past had shown power to heal others, and his devotees were now begging him to heal himself. He kept refusing, and they cried, “Don’t leave us, don’t leave us,” to which he replied, “Don’t be silly. Where could I go?”

After all, where could Maharajji go? I had him in my heart. I had been living with him moment by moment and yet not with his physical presence – so did it really make any difference? I wasn’t sure.

When the couple left I started calling other devotees in the United States and Canada and asked them to call others. It was agreed that those within a radius of three or four hundred miles would join me in New Hampshire. By the next noon some twenty of us were gathered. It was a peculiar meeting. We were all somewhat dumbfounded by the news and many were crying, but at the same time we were happy to be together and felt Maharaji’s presence very strongly with us. We cooked a big meal, which we ate around the fire. But before the food we went up to my room to sit before the puja table and meditate and do arti.

While all of us sang the ancient Sanskrit prayer, we took turns offering the light (in the form of a candle flame) by waving it before Maharaji’s picture. After my turn I went to the back of the group and watched. In the reflection of the candlelight I looked at the faces of my guru brothers and sisters and saw their expressions of love and the purity of their hearts. And finally I was able to cry – not out of sadness at the loss, but rather because of the presence of pure and perfect love that is Maharaji and which I felt in this gathering of hearts.

– Ram Dass, excerpt from Miracle of Love: Stories about Neem Karoli Baba


14 thoughts on “A Pure & Perfect Love”

  1. “because of the presence of pure and perfect love that is Maharaji” ((( <3 ))) The imagery of the candle stays in my mind as I feel this is a portal to soul that stays in this perpetual heart-flame of Divine Love and grows and grows and expands in all strengthening love in the whole world, planet, Cosmos..Love that is all~

  2. Symbolism is a human trait. Early on in human evolution, our ancestors always buried their dead with their heads pointing to the East because the rising of the sun was a non-understood, spectacular event. With symbolism comes ritual which brings people together on a spiritual level. It’s all good….

  3. Honestly I’m a broke man I’m 25 and on probation for 2 more years for distribution of marijuana. I only sold to my friends nobody underage. Always people I knew one of my freinds wasent to much of a friend.and sold me out causehe deals heroine and that’s the only way that he would get out of prison. I have tried to be the nicest guy. I will give anything for a stranger. I have before. I just don’t get it.I want to be nice and I always am ….I love everyone with all the same respect .it just seems I get put on the backburner for my love. ….. I don’t expect anything back but I want someone to be there with me

    • You are searching for answers, yes? That is the first best step…don’t stop, and keep that love in your heart!! <3

    • Life is not fair there will always be evil as there is Love. Do not continue to blame someone else for where you are in your life. You chose to sell, for every action we take there is consequences. Our prisons are filled because they got bad breaks and it was someone else s fault. Continue to be a loving person, forgive those who you feel have hurt you, forgive yourself. Once you truly Love and respect yourself it will not matter if others are not there for you, you will not be lonely.

      • Forgiving others is hard. Forgiving yourself is a whole lot harder. With forgiveness comes compassion, for self and for others. With compassion comes wisdom, in time, and ultimately you are outside time, out of body, in no-mind. But start with forgiveness. See where that takes you.

  4. A loving message for the operators of this website: the word “now” is misspelled as “not” in the phrase “the devotees were now begging him to heal himself.” This changes the meaning and is confusing. Blessings to all, and humble gratitude to Ram Dass for all his heart-work.

  5. I never met Maharajji in the flesh, but he has been close to me for years, it seems. For the first few years, I was very close to Sri Ramakrishna Paramhansa, as I simply absorbed him from the writings of his disciples, particularly M. Then after a time, he faded away from me, and Neem Karoli Baba appeared. And others as well: Shrdi Sai Baba, Ramana Maharshi, some Tibetans. Eventually it dawned on me that they were all the same. All the same energy. No difference. There was a different rasa, personality, but the essence was always the same. All one. And in my mind, they all taught lessons, always just what I needed at the moment. The guru is within and comes from the quiet centre. When guru appears, the form is irrelevant. One of my most persistent and fruitful lessons came through a form with which (whom) I was not respecting (Satya Sai Baba). It didn’t matter: The message was clear, deep and true. It has guided me ever since. Maharajji comes to me as a form embodying playful intercessor, unconditional love. All these forms are but one truth, as are we all. Where would he go? Where would we go? In the whole wide universe, there is only one.


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