The rain stopped and the dusk began to unfold.  The bright greenery became one with darkness.  Darkness is ruthless as it treats everyone as the same. The main intention of darkness is to keep you in darkness all the time.  We have to fight against darkness if we decide to realise the Light. It was dark.  Baba asked us to come inside the cave.  The cave was very small.  The flooring was unequal.  In a corner there is a Shiva Linga with some flowers on top. An idol of Shiva’s vehicle Nandi is placed opposite to the Linga.  There was a small lamp burning.  A few earthen vessels were found on one side.  There was some clothing neatly folded on one side.  The cave has no other opening except the front entrance.    Now I realized how thoughts could influence one’s mind.  When thoughts are powerful, the mind refuses to act. The descent of darkness will make you immobile in those places.  For our next step, we have to await the dawn.  It is also risky to sleep in the night, as there could be lots of snakes and reptiles.  In the area around the cave there prevailed an uneasy calm with occasional sound of some unknown insects.  The only light inside the cave is the lamp that is hardly enough to light the space around it.

“Both Maharaj and Baba are my disciples.  Why in fact, your guruji is also my disciple.  He has learnt a lot from me.  But he stayed with me only for a day.  But your guruji can communicate with all the three of us through telepathy. He is very good at it.  Nobody can judge him by his looks.  He has attained the spiritual summit.  I am using the word ‘my’ only to elucidate, otherwise usage of my or mine indicates the presence of ego. Even if trace of ego is present, you cannot progress spiritually.

“I came to this cave may be five years back.  Till then I was in Rudraprayag town.  I was residing in a rented house.  Only at that time Maharaj and Baba were introduced to me.  Baba was already a disciple of Maharaj and your guruji is the disciple of Baba.  All the three of them are realised souls and await their final call from Shiva.  They are now liberated souls.  They hold on to their present bodies merely to exhaust their remaining karmas. You cannot merge with Shiva with karmic imprints.  You are the only young man I am dealing with.  But you are born to teach spirituality.  Spirituality is now commercialized.  You are going to break that barrier.  You should prove to the world that spirituality should not be sold.  Spirituality is not a commodity. Spirituality is not like materialistic knowledge that can be purchased for money.  Money has no value in spirituality.  A true spiritual man should not even touch t money.  All the three of them do not touch money.  They have promised me on that and they are keeping up their promises.  They starve on many days.  They do not bother about their food and sleep.  They have forgotten these two long ago.  They do not have many days left on this earth.

“It is not right to say that spiritual seekers should not indulge in marital bliss.  If a man and woman do not meet, where is the work for Shiva to create? Sex has been wrongly interpreted. But conjugal bliss should be between husband and wife. Relationship between husband and wife is highly sacred. But addiction to sex is dangerous.  One should not frequently resort to marital bliss.  You should not crave for conjugal visitation.  Since it causes craving, conjugality is not generally advised for spiritual seekers. Your association with Nalini is due to karmic affliction of both.  You have to set that right by marrying her.  She will be a good spiritual mate for you.  She is another gifted child of Shiva. 

“Now you know what happens during orgasm.  Your brain becomes thoughtless.  You forget yourself and any tensions in your nervous system and muscular system are totally squeezed out. You become a relaxed person.  I do not think that anyone would ever think about anything during post orgasm relaxation.  Your mind should stay in that condition all the time, without any thoughts whatsoever. Mind is disturbed only due to desires and attachments. All the desires and attachments originate from Shiva only.  He does not do this directly.  He uses His exclusive power, Shakti to do all these diversionary acts.  Though Shiva is the cause, He so cleverly and brilliantly makes Shakti appear to be the cause.  No, Shakti can never be the cause for anything.  She only conceals and projects all the time in an illusory manner. Shakti is only the effect.  When your soul is Shiva, your body and mind is Shakti.  Your body and mind cannot exist without Shiva and how you can say that Shakti is the cause.  She is a poor creature. Because She obeys Shiva all the time, people call Her as Maya Shakti.  But She alone can take you to Shiva. When Shiva has handed over His exclusive power to Her, how can you realize Shiva without His power.  Without His power, Shiva is inert. That is why Shiva and Shakti combine is said to be more powerful than any one of them.

“You can realize Shiva only by manipulating your inner psychic organs – mind, intellect, consciousness and ego.  Let me in a nut shell explain this concept. They are the cause for all our actions.  Without them, organs of perception and organs of action cannot function.  There persists a strong interdependence between inner psychic organs on one side and organs or perception and action on the other side.  Mind is the playground of God and it is the most powerful instrument available to humanity.  In majority of the cases, quality of the mind depends upon one’s cultural environment.  To reach the spiritual summit, you have to quarantine your mind from sensory influences.  Your intellect can help you to keep your mind pure like a crystal.  The intellect has the ability to help your mind in association with your conscience (not consciousness) to establish divine commune.  But how do you make your intellect help your mind.  Only your consciousness can do this.  It is only at the level of consciousness, the difference between reality and illusion is realized.  Intellect uses your subconscious mind as a reference.  All the attachments and desires are stored in your subconscious mind as impressions.  When the intellect has any doubt, it refers to your subconscious mind.  If your subconscious mind is free from afflictions, your intellect does not act from your past experiences. There should be no traces of past in your conscious mind or the subconscious mind.  Everyone had a bitter past.  There are very few who do not have any blemishes in the past.  Brooding over your past ravages your mind and consciousness adding fuel to your burning ego.  You have to live only in the present moment. You do not know what is in store for you in future. 

“You have to even transcend your intellect.  If you do that, you attain wisdom, the state of thoughtlessness where universality of God is being realized.  When I say universality, it means the state of your consciousness beyond time and space.  The level of consciousness is not the same in everyone.  Its level varies depending upon the plane of consciousness such as lower, middle, higher, etc.  The lowest level of consciousness has multifarious thoughts and impressions in the mind and the highest level of consciousness has no thoughts in the mind and no impressions in the subconscious mind.  The purity of your consciousness is decided by the impressions in your conscious mind and subconscious mind.  When you have no desires and attachments, obviously there cannot be any impressions.  Impressions have enormous capacity to make you attached to three types of mentality – sensual, economical and emotional.  Each of these mindsets causes deep sense of addiction in your mind.  If this happens you have no chance of purifying your consciousness.  Without absolute purity of consciousness, God realisation is not possible.  You cannot see multiple movies at the same time. You cannot concentrate in any of the movies. When you have diversified thoughts, you become more confused and move away from your spiritual goal.  If you climb five steps, you slip back six steps and ultimately you end in the starting place.  You have to wait for subsequent births to make a fresh beginning. Unless you have a thoroughly purified consciousness, you have no way of entering into the cosmic consciousness.  Only in cosmic consciousness, God is realised.

“The other aspect of spirituality is your ability to renounce. Renunciation is not related to wearing saffron attire.  Renunciation is the prelude to realisation.  You have to renounce what you like the most. You will have millions in your bank account and when you are able to renounce that kind of money you are in the right path of renunciation.  You can’t renounce everything at one go like Buddha. Everyone is not Buddha but everyone should try to become Buddha.  Nothing can be achieved without giving a try.  When you truly enter the arena of spirituality, renunciation automatically happens.  You develop disinterest in sensuality, riches and emotions. This is because you have set an inner goal to achieve.  You have to achieve that goal only through your inner psychic organs. If you are able to exercise control and master your inner psychic organs, you sensory organs get disconnected from your mind.  Your mind has already set a goal.  When you concentrate on this goal, renunciation automatically happens.  You should renounce with confidence, faith and hope.  When you believe Him, He takes notice of you.  When you love Him, He expresses His love for you in many ways.  He begins to play hide and seek with you. 

“You can continue to do all the work in the world. No restrictions at all.  But you should not be concerned with the fruits of your actions.  Fruits of all your actions should be surrendered to Him. This is renunciation.  Renunciation is not something that you choose to renounce at your convenience. If you renounce banana and decide not to eat bananas, it is not renunciation.  You do these kinds of activities out of ignorance.  Renunciation should be complete in all respects. When you attain knowledge, you begin to renounce due to your spiritual wisdom, when you understand the difference between truth and illusion. You should know that Truth is Shiva and illusion is Shakti.  You cannot bypass Shakti to attain Shiva.  You can realize Shiva only through His power, Shakti. All the qualities that I have told you now only belong to Shakti.  To realize Shakti you have to practice all this.  She is a great teacher.  There is no necessity for you to look for Shiva as She will take you to Shiva.”

It was a late night lecture by Baba.  He spoke as if words are coming from Shiva.  His voice modulation and expressive language simply make you feel the situation.  That is why I say that he speaks to your mind.  When he says renunciation, you understand what renunciation is.  Baba became silent till the sky became red, indicating the signs of impending dawn. 

“Before the sun rises, it first sends signals of the impending dawn. In the same way, cosmic vibrations emanate from a person who is going to be liberated.  This vibration is emanating from you.  I am happy that at this age, you are able to pursue the path of spirituality. I have almost shared with you all that I know.  Certain things cannot be explained and you will know them through your own experience.  In a relaxed state of mind and body, when you contemplate on Shakti and Shiva, it is meditation. Meditation does not require any special technique.  Meditation is a test for your knowledge.  If you have complete knowledge, you attain perfection in meditation with ease.  Time is the best teacher in spirituality. The spiritual knowledge that you attain over a period of time will be of great help to you.  You don’t know when your knowledge will be required.  Knowledge combined with experience makes you a perfect guru.  It is rare to see perfect guru in the present world.  I want you to become the right guru and show to the world how a guru should behave.  You should not do anything for money.  You should never touch money.  Money and women are the two worst enemies to spirituality.

“You are yet to be enlightened.  You stay with me for a few days.  But the day of your enlightenment is not far off. Enlightenment is realizing Shiva within, transcending Shakti – your inner psychic organs, organs of action and organs of cognizance. In your case, She is ready now and you could have your appointment with Shiva at anytime.  When spiritual ignorance is eliminated, you are enlightened.  The difference between you and Shiva is only the spiritual ignorance.  Spiritual ignorance is Shakti. When that is dissolved, you become Shiva. You identity with Shiva now becomes irreversible. You cannot search for river water after the river merged with the ocean. You are only a miniscule of Shiva and you cannot be traced in Shiva once you are liberated.  Enlightenment happens beyond turiya and turiyattita.  There cannot be any rule how the enlightenment should happen. It happens and that is it.  When the enlightenment has happened, you become a yogi.  Shiva is also a yogi and you are also a yogi.  Now it is dawn and you have sufficient light.  Now it is time for you to relax.  Take a good bath in the creek.  Go into this forest.  You have many fruit bearing trees.  Eat to fill up your stomach and bring some for us.” Baba gave me a much needed break.

I walked through the creek.  The level was continuously ascending.  The creek’s width and depth increased as I proceeded.  Both the sides of the creek were awesomely lushly with green cover.  There are plenty of mango, gooseberry and papaya trees.  I do not think that anybody would have inhabited this area in years.  I had my bath to heart’s content.  The water was very refreshing and very cold.  I took water in my hands and tasted it.  It was extremely delicious.  This is the first time I realise that water also has a delicious taste and it is wrong to say that water is tasteless and odourless.  Many times, Nature cannot be explained through science. Science is only a miniscule instrument in the hands of humanity to understand Nature better.  I changed my clothing and washed my old clothes, though I know there is no use of changing my clothing. Precipitation is almost continuous and there is no symptom of bright sun.  Sun is playing hide and seek with clouds. I climbed a mango tree and plucked ripe fruits.  I got some papaya fruits as well and collected them in my washed bag and came back to the cave where Baba and guruji were discussing.  I offered the fruits to Baba and guruji. Baba said that he is going to take his bath and went in the way I had gone earlier.  Guruji said that he would take his bath in the creek itself. 

Guruji returned after fifteen minutes.  Baba did not come even after two hours. 

“Shankaraaa, I think I have accomplished my task.  I was asked to meet you and bring you first to Haridwar, then to Rishikesh and finally to this place.  Both Haridwar Baba and Maharaj are quite happy with your phenomenal progress in a matter of days.  This kind of progress is not possible unless there is Divine intervention. Sometimes, Divinity has to directly intervene to uphold virtues and morality.  In the present day scenario, true spirituality is not taught properly.  A few make money by conducting classes on kundalini.  Kundalini is not going to ascend by attending such classes.  Mere theory on kundalini is not going to help.  Theory with practice alone helps. These teachers do not realize the seriousness of karma.  Even in this birth itself, they will be doomed. God will not tolerate chaos and cheating for long.  God always ensures that perfect balance between good and bad is maintained.  If the balance begins to tilt towards bad, He corrects it through some unknown source.  I strongly believe that you are going to be instrumental in re-establishing spiritual faith in humanity.  You should also not touch money at any cost and under any circumstances” guruji finished when Baba returned with some small fruits and placed them on the floor. 

“There are three kinds of fruits and nuts and they are amalaki, bibhitaki and hartikai.  They together are called triphala, where tri means three and phala means fruit. The combination of all the three in equal proportion should be taken in the morning along with a cup of water.  It is detoxifying and supplements the energy needed for kundalini.  It also delays the process of aging. This can be used as a good food supplement. You should always have this with you” Baba said.

He then sat in his lotus posture.  He asked me to sit in vajrasana (sitting on knees) facing in the same direction as he was sitting.  Both of us faced eastern side.  He asked me to close my eyes and concentrate on my ajna chakra.  When I fixed my consciousness on ajna chakra, my kundalini was racing towards my head.  Suddenly he pressed at my coccyx.  That was the last thing I know.  My kundalini got awakened and the force of Her ascent was so tremendous, it flew me to a distance of about ten feet and I had fallen on the creek.  I know I am losing my consciousness.

By the time I regained my consciousness, it is afternoon.  Now sun is shining bright.  I got up and looked at Baba and guruji. 

“Are you hurt?” Baba asked.

I do not know whether I am hurt.  I walked towards Baba.  There was no pain in my body.

“No, I am fine” I said.

“Sit here before me”

I sat down, this time facing him.

Now your kundalini is fully awakened.  With the lessons already taught to you, you can move your kundalini up and down as you like.  Kundalini awakens only if it is awakened by a Guru.  Though you have awakened your kundalini during your training under Maharaj, it was only partial.  There is difference between a thousand watt bulb and a hundred watt bulb.  Now I am going to open up your ajna chakra and your sahasrara.  This time nothing will happen to you, but you could see flashes of light with rise in your body temperature.  Just remain calm”

He first pressed at my ajna chakra.  I saw a flurry of violet light entering my ajna chakra through top of my head.  I distinctly felt the entry of light into my skull.  He took off his hands from ajna chakra and placed on the top of my skull.  The whole body began to vibrate.  The vibration became more intense with every passing second.  I started crying, crying aloud.  I cried ‘Shivoham’ (Shivoham means I am Shiva) repeatedly.  He took his hands off, but I continued to cry. Someone living a few miles away could have easily heard my sound.  I felt that the whole of my body was illuminated.  I could see every cell of my body and all the internal organs.  Everything was distinctly visible.  This continued for some time. Baba suddenly pressed my coccyx again and the entire illumination of body got condensed as if molten silver is being poured to a tiny vessel.  I returned to my normalcy.  I continued to cry.  The divine power has the potentiality to make you cry, sometime silently and sometime aloud. Baba asked me to bring those three fruits and asked me to crush them.  He took one portion from each and made a mixture in his hand and gave it to me.

“Shankara, you have been initiated and you have to make a beginning from here.  Your spiritual development hereafter depends upon your practice.  The bright Light that you had seen is Shiva.  Now you will know that God does not have a form.  He is minute than the minutest, incomprehensible and is beyond normal human perception. You saw the effulgent Shiva through extra sensory perception.  Only yogis can see His effulgence.  Now you have become a yogi and you are rechristened as “Shankara yogi Maharaj”.  You will be known only by this name.  Only the four of us will call you Shankara and the rest will call you as “Yogi Maharaj”. You will become popular.  You should always maintain the same humility that you have now.  When people begin to worship you, they do not worship you as a person.  They worship Shiva in you.  Unfortunately, they are not able to worship Shiva in them, as they do not understand that Shiva is within.  They waste lot of their time and earnings to try to locate Him.  You have to tell them how Shiva can be realized within. That is your job henceforth.  You are leaving this place tomorrow morning.  You reach Rishikesh tomorrow evening.  Guruji will take you to Maharaj there.  Maharaj will conduct your marriage with Nalini.  Baba at Haridwar is ready for liberation.  You will proceed to Haridwar with Nalini.  Within six hours from your arrival, Baba will leave this world.  That ashram will come under your control.  You have to conduct bajans and discourses in Haridwar.  Your only ambition in life is to liberate as many souls as possible.  Nalini will stand by you like a rock.  You can have marital relationship with her.  Both of you are not destined to beget children.  At every stage you will be directed by the Divine.  You listen to what Shiva says.  His words are conclusive” Baba has clearly defined my path without any ambiguity.