Jai Sri Hari Pariwar ☺
Thank you very much for all the love, hugs, and prayers. I never experienced this unconditional love and support in my life. It was so overwhelming. I was not at all sure that Pariwar members will read my post so before posting I went to Srihari and asked him “Baba please just two comments” it’s more than enough for me. And his kindness is unimaginable. Thank you all. I don’t have words to explain my gratitude. Please accept my love and hug. With all your prayers and his grace that chapter of my life is closed. Memories will never go away but I know they will never bother me like before. Thank you all.
Looking at your love I decided to share one of the stories with you all. It is very close to my heart. I was even very possessive about this story. But today I decided to share with you all. This story is about beautiful LOVE LETTERS. Letters which I wrote to Baba and how he answered all my letters. As to understand the LINKS of LOVE I will be sharing with you some other chapters of my life. So it will be easy to connect the DOTS.
A few years back: My College Life
I come from a family where everyone is either an engineer or doctor and only a few are in the teaching profession. I feel today also my family members don’t consider other professions than doctors and Engineers. They still believe becoming Doctor and Engineer is the only career option. My story is very similar to most Indian Engineering students. After securing good marks in 12th my parents decided that I will study Engineering and no one bothered to ask me what I wanted to study. My biological father ( I am mentioning biological because now my Baba is only my father) had decided that I will study in Electronics and communication stream because in his family no one had taken EC branch and according to him if I studied EC that would have made him proud. Till today he is the only person who is happy with me becoming an Engineer. He thinks he had done a great job. (Maybe)
I explained, I opposed, I cried, I rebelled but all my efforts were meaningless. No one even bothered to listen to me. No one tried to understand me. Every second in the classroom was torturous for me. I hardly understood the topics like Z-transformations, field theory, logic designs, or antennas. I ran out of the hostel thrice. I tried to convince my mother that the subjects are great, but I am not able to understand them. I am not able to connect with the things, I am just memorizing just to get marks in exams and Engineering is not about memorizing. I suggested to her that I can go for another branch but not electronics and communication. I even expressed my desire to study psychology or mass communication. But she never agreed. She just kept on telling me it’s just 4-year course and I am not marrying to my course. After four years I will be free from studies and college. As usual, I believed her words. But I wish I could have told her and myself also that career is also sort of marriage only. If you love it no matter how many hurdles you may face you still want to give your best. The base of career success is also LOVE for your work only.
I struggled hard to memorize the equations, theory concepts, circuit diagram (life seems much easier than those zig-zag circuit diagram). But nothing worked out. I failed in almost all subjects. That was the first time I ever failed in exams. Failing in the exam was a hard slap on my confidence. I thought at least now my parents may realize that I am not fit for engineering. I was again wrong and they were really hard to bend. I left with no option other than studying engineering.
When my classmates were partying I was struggling with subjects. When my friends were busy exploring love/romantic life I was busy with my circuits and practical labs. When my friends were crying because of break up I was still running behind seniors and lectures for marking the important questions in exams. When my friends moved on from break up and found a new love interest I was still stuck with my subjects. (Bhagawan what a colorful life that was)
My lovely Dear parents, I completely understand and respect your sacrifices for your children. I understand and I am even aware of that how you adjust and compromise at every point just to fulfill your children’s needs and give them the best comfortable life. I know about your sleepless nights, worry for your children when they are away from you for studies. But please at least ask once them whether they need what you are providing or not? Ask them whether they are ok you choosing a career for them or not? Just once in a while Allow them to make their own mistakes.
This part of my life I would like to call it Emptiness.
Somehow I managed to finish my engineering securing good marks and I decided to work as a Network security engineer in MNCs. This was completely my choice. But the reason why I wanted to work was pathetic. My parents and relatives wanted me to be married soon after finishing my degree and I wanted not to be married. Just to escape from this I did not even explore my interests, I did not give a chance to listen to my inner voice before listening to it I just turned it off. I was given two months by my family member to secure a job, if I fail then I have to be married to the guy of their choice. (I still don’t have the choice to select my life partner even after working in MNCs for years).
According to the condition within two months I secured a job in one of the MNCs as a network security engineer. I was so happy. I was free. I was relaxed to know that I was out of marriage. I was all set to fly high. I was all set to enjoy my freedom but my life always has some other plans for me.
I still remember the first day of my job. I woke up happily my mind was happy, I was humming songs, I was listening to loud music disturbing my roommates. I thought I was on top of the sky but something within me was very very sad. As if it knew that something was terribly wrong. But I was happy. If I was happy then who was this within me then? But I ignored it. I managed to get ready and left to the office. I was happy to look at all the big companies on one campus ECO SPACE, Bangalore. I was excited to get into the office but something within me was stopping my every step. I was warmly welcomed my manager and team lead. When my team lead was introducing me to other teammates tears started rolling from my eyes. My mind, my body just got numb and something within me shouted very loudly “THIS IS NOT WHAT I WANT. THIS IS NOT THE PLACE WHERE I BELONG. THIS IS NOT ME”. For a moment this voice scared me to death. At that moment somehow I managed to mute this voice conveniently and controlled my tears.
While returning from the office I questioned myself what was that? what does even that mean? what even it means that I don’t want this? Of course, I want this. This is the place I wanted to work. This is the job I wanted. I struggled, studied day and night, traveled in buses in the all IT tech parks of Bangalore just to get this. If I do not belong here then where? I was really restless and tired. I needed someone to talk to so I called my Mom. (wrong option but she was the one whom I could have talked to). (It was true that I did not enjoy Engineering but Working in IT sector was completely my choice and dream too)
I was continuously crying on call. I just kept on telling Amma eno sari illa. (Mom something is wrong) Something is missing. I am feeling like in search of something temporary I am getting disconnected with something more precious, pure, and beautiful. At this point, I really do not know what is that. But all I know is that is very precious to my breath. On that day I cried a lot. My mom managed to convince me that after college I was first time working so these things are ok. As I was moving from college life to a working environment so these all things are ok she said and I have believed her.
Soon after I started adopting the corporate culture. I started taking up some other courses because I wanted to switch my job for a better salary, better career options in abroad. I had a full career plan two years job in India. Two years job in abroad. Marriage at 26. Mother at 28 and another child at 30. 3BHK flat in Bangalore. 2 cars. Every weekend romantic dinner with husband, a trip in every three months and so on(Now I am in Badrika Ashram no job, no husband, no kids, no romantic dates and no plans too. God really has a better plan for all of us. Thank you Bhagawan for saving me). As I started working toward my conditioned dreams slowly a void started creating in me. A sort of emptiness.
With this emptiness working became very challenging. Mine was a completely process-based job using my brain and creativity meant getting warning letters and sometimes it even meant losing my job too. It didn’t take much time for me to fall out of love with the job. I didn’t quit the job because now I was in love with a fistful of money which I was getting every month. I was now in my comfort zone. I had even learnt to ignore my inner voice conveniently. No matter how hard we may ignore what life is trying to tell us but after a point it has its way to make us listen.
To fill the void in me I tried different things. Tried swimming and left just in a week. Inquired, did all my research about karate and marshalate talked with trainee and never went to him. Joined the group of photographers and explored few crowded areas in Bangalore for few months after that I still have not touched my camera yet. Road trip, guitar class, meaningless shopping, eating unhealthy food, I tried Nonveg and alcohol too. Mine is a pure vegetarian family when my mother came to know that I ate non veg she forced me to drink Gomutra. (But I never enjoyed neither nonveg nor alcohol)
More I tried my void got wider and the sound within me got even louder. Whenever I tried any new things (I tried several things just to fill my emptiness but not to learn) it just shouted this is not what I want? whenever I went mall, restaurant, PVR, or any other social places something within me just kept on humming “I don’t belong here”. I called up my friends for a small get-together within just a few minutes of our meet I used to feel like running away from all of them.
Slowly I started losing my connection with my home and family too. Whenever I went from Bangalore to my hometown I always felt I am moving from one hostel to another hostel. After few more months staying at home for a day was also the biggest quest for me. I lost all the warmth, safety feeling which was attached to my home. To add to my emptiness I started losing affection and connectedness with my family members too. That was complete indifference. No matter what happened in my childhood (here) but I was so attached to my home. I was madly in love with my family members especially my mom. I loved my sister like my own daughter. I was very protective about her. She was my little baby angel. My Mami was my bestfriend and I adored my mama a lot. But now Whenever they hugged me, touched me, or gave peck I just felt nothing all the time. As if love in me for them has died completely. Or should I say love for myself also had died? More I looked toward them my emptiness got deepened. More I tried to mold myself according to them more I felt out of place. Now my mind was also started telling me this is not where I belong.
These are the people whom I knew since my birth. They love me and I love them. It was true that engineering I really didn’t like but this is the job I wanted to do. Marriage and secure life this is what I wanted. If it’s not then what else? If I don’t belong here then where? This is my world. If not this then where should I go? This scared me. Even after surrounded by hundreds of known people a part of me was searching for something invisible. And I really didn’t know what was that?
You all must be thinking that now I would have gone in search of Bhagawan but I was an Atheist. God, grace, bhakti, surrender, believing in the wisdom of the universe, etc were just foreign concepts for me. I was one of those who always questioned the existence of Bhagawan. I was one who always blamed him. I had confidence that if I get the opportunity then I would rule this planet better than him. ( sheer ignorance I know).
I thought of so many things to do and not to do in my life. I imagined myself playing several roles like an employee, employer, daughter, wife, mother, etc but even in my dream also I never thought that I will go on my knees, fold my hands and bow my heads in front of God. Trust me that was the most beautiful moment of my life when I went on my knees and called him and prayed to him. I never thought a person like me who doesn’t even know what God is like, will fall in love with him and cry for him. But Leeladhar can play any leela. I am thankful to him that he chose me for his Leela.
Living with this emptiness became challenging at the same time torturous too. I felt guilty for telling I love you to my family and friends when I felt nothing in me. I felt like I was cheating everyone. I tried my level best at work but that also didn’t work out. I just decided to get isolated from everything and everyone. I left my job. Changed city and my phone number. Got disconnected from almost all friends.
Dear All I would like to share some points on career with you all
1. As Baba says in your guts feeling you always know that what you want to be in your life. If you don’t know just spend some time with yourself and explore things I am sure you will find your passion.
2. The main key to success is also LOVE for your work. If you really love and care for something then there will be no life and work. Your work will become your life. You will start enjoying every second of your life.
3. Even if you have failed in your career (which you chose for yourself) just pat your back. Failing means you tried something and it’s absolutely ok to fail. Buckle up your shoes and start again.
4. If you are scared to start something new, if you are scared to follow your heart then do this with me just close your eyes, take a deep breath and say his name, and start the work. His light will guide all of us. It’s ok not to have a master plan in deep darkness even taking one small step at a time also matters a lot. He will slowly unfold the next steps. Believe him.
Thank you for reading, take care. Jai Sri Hari
To be continued…