I was being visited by an American friend of mine who doesn’t believe in God. I invited her to come and meet Maharaji but she resisted because she didn’t believe in saints. I told her to come anyhow because Maharaji was not an ordinary saint. He’s like a friend. Maharaji was so nice to her. “Because you say you don’t believe in God – you’re telling the truth.”

Maharaji could break the cord that holds back our love when he touches us. Once a cook at the temple was acting up and Maharaji called him in and said, “Come closer, come closer…” Then he said in a fierce way, “I’m going to break that cord!” The fellow went running out. But why should he have run? That would have been liberation.

I would talk with Maharaji bout all things, science, man going to the moon – he was like a mirror. He had nothing to do with any of it. But he showed interest and the next time you spoke of it, he would follow what you were saying. He used to say, “I remember everything.”

For me the greatest of Maharaji’s miracles, was how he plucked us up off of the streets in the world, and, through the power of his love alone, wrought a transformation. He gave substance to the idea that our lives were spiritual journeys. 

When I was young I thought my fascination to be around Maharaji was to see a grown man, with no teeth, constantly giggling and telling people their future. I also always enjoyed my father’s interaction with him because it was apparent that my father had unconditional love for him and blind faith in him but insisted on pulling his leg every time they met. The standard exchange between them would be that Baba-ji would say something to my father and my father would react by asking, “Baba-ji how do you know?” Baba-ji would giggle and say, “I have a wireless with God!”

Excerpts from Barefoot in the Heart: Remembering Neem Karoli Baba, edited by Keshav Das



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