Please click here for part six.

After lunch, we sat on the swing for 20–30 mins and then decided to head back to the room. Shubs was tired and sleepy, so she decided to take a nap. I still had a lot of energy, so I visited the river Giri. Somehow, I knew where I was going, and the signs on the walkway also helped. I ran down to meet Giri ma. I was missing her so much. You may ask, how can you miss a river you have never seen? I don’t have an answer to this. I ran down; I was so close to her. I was so happy and felt so much bliss in my heart. I touched her water; I prayed to her. I paid my respect.

Giri Ma and Sri Hari

That was the tree I was standing next to, looking at Giri in my meditation. The rock was right there as expected, and Giri ma smiled at me, moving gently with grace. The wind gently blew my hair, and everything paused for a second; this was it! This is precisely what I experienced in my meditation. There I was standing; I was home!

Everything was so familiar and harmonious; there was nothing alien for me in the Ashram. I was supposed to be here, just as planned. I came back to the room and rested a bit. It was 3 pm. I decided to visit the temple. And there HE was, standing right in front of me. At first glance, I noticed he was wearing his dashing red outfit with one sizeable yellow garland and another miniature orange garland with red and white flowers. Perfection is the only word I can use here. I was so shy to stare at him at first, but with all my courage, I raised my head and looked at him. There HE was, looking so magnificent, glorious, and pristine. There is nothing more beautiful than Bhagwan Sri Hari Ji. He gently smiled at me and welcomed me into his temple.

We knew each other. He is my Krishna from the frame at my grandma’s home. I met him there first when I was three years old. He is my Vitthal from Pandharpur temple. He is my Kanha, who used to play and talk with me when I was little. But then, I lost him for so many years. And here He is, standing right there, gently smiling at me.

I felt sad because he left me, or did I leave him? was I mad at myself for erasing him from my life? Or was I mad that he didn’t remind me of him? Sushree Svadha was singing melodious chants and songs to Bhagwan Sri Hari Ji. I sat there as I watched both of them. It was so serene; her voice was full of devotion and love. I felt so lucky and humbled to be there. Bhagwan Sri Hari Ji allowed me to witness something so beautiful today.

He helped me remember all the fun times we used to have together. Somehow the time in the middle just melted away, and we became kids again. I had so much to tell him, but he knew everything already. I was so delighted and pleased that I was with him again. He was always there; I was the one who was lost.

Lalita Sahasranama

My favorite spot at the ashram is now sitting on the swing. That is my happy place. I love swings, and the view from that swing is just so beautiful.

There was a Lalita Sahasranama reading in the temple. We didn’t know what that was, but we came and sat with everyone as one should do. This Lalita Sahasranama was still going on; it was very long. First, I had no idea what they were chanting about. Oh! It is about my Divine ma. Wow! She is so gentle, yet so powerful! I fell in love with Lalita Sahasranama. Every word had a strong pull, and I was floating in that bliss.

Evening dinner was perfect; it was delicious. We didn’t talk to anyone there. After dinner was Aarti, Bhagwan Shi Hari’s Aarti. I didn’t know the words of the aarti and didn’t know what I was supposed to do or sing. I didn’t see the rhythm of the claps; should we clap or not? Are there many aartis or just one? What about Ganpati Aarti? OMG! So much confusion and so many questions. We walked into the temple. First came breathtaking Shankha Naad (three times). The entire temple was filled with magic waves and loved all around us. I forgot all my worries and questions about the aarti.

Bhagwan Sri Hari’s aarti was the most beautiful in the world! Now, I don’t want to sing any other aartis. I was thinking, how come I don’t know this aarti? I had never heard of it before. It’s not in the aarti book that my mom gave me. Hmm! Interesting. I noticed that Bhagwan Sri Hari Ji was pleased with his aarti, and so was I and everyone in the temple.

After the aarti, we went to our room; it was dark. We did our meditation; then, I crashed into the bed and was fast asleep before I knew it.

Please click here for part eight.