From the desk of Swami Niranjan

March 1989

This year I had the honour of being twice in the august presence of Sri Swamiji during Kumbha Mela in Allahabad. First was on the Makar Sankranti day (14.1.1989). I reached Allahabad at 2 a.m. on 13th January and was taken by Sri Swamiji himself on a guided tour of the Mela Nagar and the Sangam. On this day we also had darshan of many sadhus gathered there for the occasion. On 14th at 3 a.m., after a ratri jagaran, we had our first bath in the freezing cold waters of the Sangam which was limited to three dips only on a very freezing morning. Then by 7 a.m. Sri Swamiji left Allahabad for destinations unknown accompanied for part of the way by Savita and Sanjiv Bhaskar from New Delhi, and I returned the same day to Munger.

The second visit, for which I had already taken permission from Swamiji, was on the occasion of Mauni Amavasya, and this time Swami Anandananda from Italy with video camera, Swami Vajrapani and Swami Ahimsamurti also had the opportunity of Swamiji's darshan. Some of the sadhus and swamis of whom we also had darshan were as follows:

  • Mahamandaleshwar Sri Swami Vishwadevanandaji of Nirvani Akhada
  • Sri Godawari Giri Maharaj, a great Naga saint of Juna Akhada which is the most ancient and foremost of the sannyasa traditions and carries the banner of Adiguru Sri Shankaracharya
  • Pilot Baba
  • Swami Santoshi Mata of Kankhal, Haridwar
  • Maharaj of Udaseen Sampradaya Amarkantak
  • Dr Brahmamitra Awasthi, a great research scholar from Keshawananda Yoga Sansthan, N. Delhi
  • Sri Swami Chidanandji from the Divine Life Society, Rishikesh

We visited many other camps of sadhus and yogis. The highlight of our visit was the darshan of Sri Devraha Baba at Kumbha. We were joined by Swamis Gorakhnath, Animesha, Gurudas, Hari Chaitanya and Avinashananda.

On the 6th at 1.30 a.m. we all had our second bath at Sangam and in the milling crowd, we returned to our place of stay. Afterwards I left Sri Swamiji to return to Munger accompanied by Swamis Anandananda, and Ahimsamurti.

The visits at Kumbha Mela have left an everlasting and wondrous impression in our minds as we experienced faith, not as a concept, but as a living reality. The sea of humanity in which we got separated from Swamiji, then by his miracle met him again, to lose him a second time and then re-meet him, was another mind-blowing event and a different story.