Love Whispers is the only work besides Living with the Himalayan Masters in which Swamiji does not hide his true identity. The joyous relationship between him and the Divine Mother finds its full expression in these pages because Swamiji had no intention of publishing a book when he penned these lines. For a long time its content remained hidden in the deepest chamber of his heart and between the covers of his personal diaries.
In the early eighties I was fortunate enough to read some of the letters Swamiji had written between 1956 and 1975 to Dr. S. N. Agnihotri, a beloved friend and disciple. And in those letters I saw in,Swamiji a sage inebriated with the love divine, a sage who presented himself in the West as a scientist, a yogi, a researcher, a humanitarian, and an executive of a multi- national organization, the Himalayan International Institute. I was also lucky enough to be taking his dictation when he answered a letter from an astrologer in New Delhi. This astrologer, who was closely related toSwamiji’s biological family, had written to warn Swamiji of a calamity which, due to the placement of planets and stars, soon would befall him. I still have a copy of Swamiji’s answer. It said in essence that once the Divine Mother had given him Her unconditional love and protection and had placed him under the safety of Her lotus feet, why should he make any effort to protect himself from the movements of these planets and stars? As he was dictating this reply I saw in his eyes a light that did not seem to be of this world.
Such occasions were, however, very rare. Most of the time Swamiji seemed practical and down-to-earth. He seldom shared his mystical experiences with anyone. In every book he wrote and every class he taught he made sure that people heard his main message: “Be practical. Don’t be emotional. Be nice to yourself. Take care of your duties. Live in the world and yet remain above it. Achieve the higher purpose of life here and now.” I had been living in his company for several years before this book was published, and I was growing a bit tired of hearing him teach the same thing.
One Sunday morning Swamiji was scheduled to lecture as usual when, driven by samskaras or by Divine Will, I found myself in an unusually mischievous mood. Right before his lecture I walked into his quarters and found him putting his shawl around himself in preparation for walking down to the lecture hall. Without much thought I jokingly said, “Swamiji, I have just achieved a greatsiddhi [spiritual power].” When he asked what it was I answered, “Now I can read anyone’s mind and I can predict the immediate future. I can tell exactly what you are going to say in your lecture.”
Swamiji smiled and said, “OK, tell me.”
I said, “You will walk to the stage in your regal style, go to the podium, and while looking at the audience, you will bow your head and say [and here I began to imitate his speaking style], ‘I pray to the Divinity in you. How are you today? Are you comfortable? Do you like the food here at the Institute? If you have any problem, please tell Kevin or Dr. Clarke.’ Then very gracefully you will walk to the blackboard and while looking at the audience you will say, ‘A human being is not body alone, not mind alone. A human being is a breathing being too .... Here is body and here is mind.’ Then you will draw two circles on the board and say, ‘Between these two there is something called breath’ while you connect the circles with arrows ... “
As I was about to complete the last sentence, Swamiji grinned and roared, “Badmash [rascal]! Are you making fun of your guru?”
I replied, “No, Swamiji. But all these years this is the only thing I’m hearing. Is this all that yoga and spirituality are about? Isn’t there something more to it?”
“Then what is yoga?” he said, “You tell me.”
I said, “What’s the use of catching hold of the nose, breathing left and right and concentrating on the breath if just by thinking of the beautiful toes of the Divine Mother one can become absorbed inHer and find oneself in the consummate state that renders the joy of samadhi tasteless?”
With that I noticed Swamiji’s eyes closing and his head swaying in a gentle circle. He sank down on a nearby chair. It seemed as if he entered a world that an ordinary mind cannot reach, and there he stayed for the next five minutes. When at last he opened his eyes he said gently, “Promise that from today you will not remind me of Her. For if you do so I will not be able to function, and my master has given me a task that I must accomplish before this body falls apart.”
That experience touched me so deeply that I began to wonder who Swamiji really was. He would talk about the Divine Mother from time to time after that. He called Her the Lord of Life, but he never said enough to really convey the profundity of his relationship with Her.
Excited by my growing knowledge and understanding of Swamiji, I thought several times of writing about his mystical experiences, but I had to drop the idea when I remembered that he told me in 1976 that I could not write about him until 21 years had passed. Thanks to my dear friend Arpita, however, who had the skills to persuade him to let her edit some of his diaries and letters, today we have this slender volume, Love Whispers. It gives us a glimpse of Swamiji’s personal vision of the love and beauty which, as his own experience showed him, are intrinsic to all that exists.
Before Love Whispers was published there was no way to comprehend the level of consciousness and the wisdom that this mystic sage of the Himalayas embodied. But now the experiences associated with exalted states of consciousness, which he always safeguarded in his diaries, are accessible to the fortunate readers of this book. After reading the text we can surmise for ourselves that Swamiji was simultaneously the citizen of two worlds: the mundane world of the senses, and the spiritual world of pure revelation. As he himself writes:
When the great merciful Lord gave me the vision of the whole cosmos, I began composing the inspirations of my life in deep contemplation. These have enabled me to comprehend the profound meaning of life. Now I understand the mystery of the creation of the universe, its sublime simplicity and perfect lyric. Thou hast revealed to me all the divine movements beyond the forms-and names of this world. Thus I could sing the songs that always bring the inner awakening that translates my past convictions into living truths .... My beliefs are well-filtered by time. My ideas have crossed beyond the golden angles of the sun, moon, and stars. The bird of my imagination has flown beyond the boundaries of all galaxies.
After seeing what ordinarily remains unseen to human eyes, Swamiji rose above the confines of national boundaries, religious affiliations, and ethnocentric loyalties. Thus one day he noted in his diary:
I am a messenger, a child of the Himalayan sages. I belong to all nations and selfless service is the singular expression of my pure love. This is the fullness of life. It can only be reached by perfecting the relationship to the Self of all. ... When it [civilization] embraces the Lord of Love as the very basis of living and being, what will be the fate of the priesthood? Who will go to pray in the temples and churches? There will be no multiplicity of shrines. Every human being’s heart will become an altar of love Oh my fellow travelers, do not create a gulf anymore Wake up! You are still in the depths of sleep. You are captive in a solitary cage with no horizon beyond it. Come out of this imprisonment, for I am incomplete without you.
After Love Whispers had been compiled, edited, and was about to go to press, I remember Swamiji sitting quietly one night, seemingly immersed in the depths of a truth not yet known to us. The next morning he showed me a poem he had written the night before. Upon reading the first stanza I was elated, for it told me who he is and where he truly resided. But when I read the second stanza I felt as if I had been struck by lightning. It read:
With snowy weather beating around me,
Ascending the peaks of the mountains I go.
No one talks with me, no one walks with me,
As I cross streams and tramp glacial snow.
When I asked Swamiji what it meant, he replied, “I slipped into the future. This is the reality of the future. Don’t feel bad-read the last stanza.”
Offering my life at thy holy feet,
Loving all-selfless and complete.
As soon as I finished reading this final couplet, he said, “I love you and I love those who have surrendered themselves at Her holy feet. Safeguard the secret ... by sealing your lips. Service is the way to be with me.”
Swami left his body in 1996 but his love for the Divine and Her creation still whispers to our hearts.
For many years, Swamiji has kept the habit of writing prose and poetry in his daily diary. Deep in the solitude and silence of dark night, when all the world slept, he would reflect on life or nature and note down his thoughts and insights- and he would record his dialogues with the Divine. He never allowed anyone to read his diary but kept it always with him. On rare occasions he would read an entry to his close students.
In 1984, when Swamiji was in Manali, in the Himalayas, to write Perennial Psychology of the Bhagavad Gita, he permitted his close disciple Swami Ajaya to see some of the entries in his diary. Swami Ajaya was deeply impressed with the beauty and profundity of Swamiji’s writing, and was especially curious about Swamiji’s love dialogues with his Beloved. He started asking Swamiji aboutHer, and Swamiji brought out his other journals, which contained more dialogues. Finally Swamiji revealed his experiences to Swami Ajaya by describing the visions he had been having of Her since the age of seven. Swamiji had not spoken of Her before because he wanted to preserve the quality of his experience by keeping it concealed within his heart, and he did not want his tender experience to be placed before those who might not understand or appreciate its sublime simplicity. Swami Ajaya assured him that the great poets and mystics of the past had also reported such phenomena and that seers have repeatedly described visions and conversations with their muse, ideal beloved, or blessed mother. He explained that Swamiji’s rare experience would not be considered strange but would be acknowledged as transpersonal revelation.
Every era has been graced with a few blessed ones who see beyond the limited reality of the mundane and temporal. Those who dwell only on the gross surface of life cannot comprehend the profundity or subtlety of such a phenomenon. They tend to make light of it, subject it to crude analysis, or dismiss it as evidence of impossible fancy. Seers have there- fore learned to remain silent about their visions, and Swamiji was no exception. But whenever he revealed a tiny glimmer of his experiences, his students were deeply inspired, and they gently encouraged him to share his private writings more openly so others could also benefit from them.
Being a literary secretary and disciple of Swamiji’s, I persuaded him to hand over one or two diaries from among the many stacked in his personal library. Finally he agreed to offer his diaries for editing and publication; thus the work was assigned to me for compiling into book form. These entries are selections from 1979 to 1985; some were written in Japan, some in Nepal, and some in the Himalayas. Dr. Ballentine and Pennell Ballentine kindly gave us one of the letters that Swamiji had written to them, and we have included it here under the title “Love Offering.” There are many more diaries, and Swamiji has consented to allow us to publish them also. This is the first volume of the series.
These poems, stories, and dialogues are exceptional in their beauty and spiritual depth. Reading them has an effect on the reader that cannot be described: they bring about a shift in perspective and expand the consciousness. This book is not to be merely read-it is to be reverently assimilated. Rarely do the unenlightened have opportunity to eavesdrop on the sage’s communion with the Divine or to see life from his perspective. But in these prose poems, Swamiji has allowed us into the sacred intimate chamber where he dwells with his divine Beloved, and he has drawn open a curtain through which we may glimpse the interior world.
These prose poems reveal the devotional aspect of a great yogic sage renowned for his keen intellect, practical scientific expertise, and selfless service. Known as a monist, Swamiji here describes reality from a dualistic perspective, conveying the true nature of mystical awareness and divine love. By sharing his inner reality, he has allowed us to glimpse that which is beyond the mundane and temporal. To him, this realm is as real as the phenomenal world is to us: he actually sees and talks with his visionary symbol of the Divine. Through these tender reports from the lofty heights of divine love, terse philosophical concepts are conveyed in a lucid manner. The heart s-imply opens to profound understanding beyond words. These sacred whispers of the night transport the loving soul to the realm divine.
Introduction by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait
Foreword by Arpita, Ph.D.
To Thy Glory
My Phantom Lady
Separation Is Brutal
The Vessel of Life
My Love for Thee
Thou Art Inexplicable
Flow of Love
Dialogue with the Stream
Love Within and Without
What Is Love?
Melodies of My Life
The Path of Love
Love Is Deathless
Truth Weds Love
The Purpose of Human Life
Misery Is Self-Created
A Vision in the Alps
From the Bed of Memory
Time Beyond Time
The Preaching of the Plants
Just for Thee
To the Mother
Thy Eternal Name
Above the Shore of Life
Ye Dweller of the Silence
Death Is Life Disguised
The Path of Light
Echoes of Life
The Way of Providence
The Self of All
Blossoms Dropped by the Night
Hermitage in the Mountains
To and Fro
At Thy Holy Feet
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