“Faith begins where science ends.”

It was 2 AM, and Aarti’s shoe bite stung miserably. The wound was fresh, and it had started secreting puss. She could barely move her foot. There was no way Aarti could perform the next day’s play with the new pair of shoes on.

Alone, away from her family, and living in a paying guest accommodation in Mumbai, Aarti had dreamed to be an actor since she was a kid! After months of struggling to make ends meet, meeting people, giving auditions, and getting mercilessly rejected, she finally managed to get a small but good role in a play. The next day was her first show, for which she had to rehearse the entire day in a new pair of high-heeled leather shoes. They stung.  When she took them off at the end of the day, the shoe bite had worsened to a small injury.

Aarti didn’t know who to wake up in the middle of the night to take her to the hospital. She also wondered which hospital would be open at this hour that would administer first aid to her.  There was no first aid kit where she stayed. Feeling helpless and melancholic, she decided to read a book lying on her nightstand to divert her mind from the excruciating pain.

The book was the Mahabharata. She randomly opened a page, and Shri Krishna’s name peeked out.

Draupadi was just done with the last morsel of her food and was about to wash the Akshaya Patra when she was informed that Durvasa Muni, along with many other disciples, was on his way to their hut in the jungle where they, the Pandavas, lived in exile. The small entourage expected to be fed well as they were quite hungry after a yagna, and were now already bathing in the river before lunch. Now Akshaya Patra was gifted to the Pandavas to make sure that they never run out of food. But there was a condition: Akshaya Patra would cease giving food after Draupadi herself had finished eating for the day, and for that day, she was done! Draupadi was sure that Durvasa Muni would angrily curse them, for there was no food to serve them! She was beside herself with worry, when suddenly, Shri Krishna came to Draupadi, asking for food, since He too was very hungry! Exasperated, Draupadi showed him the now-empty Akshaya Patra – there was only ONE grain of rice. Shri Krishna chuckled, gobbled up the one grain of rice, and suddenly gave a hearty, satisfying burp! And suddenly, everyone in Durvasa Muni’s entourage, including the Muni himself, burped, even before they were done with their baths.  Their stomachs felt full, and Durvasa Muni decided to NOT eat at the Pandavas since they were not hungry anymore, dissolving Draupadi’s worry entirely!’

A warm surge of love and affection filled Aarti’s lonely heart as she put the book down. ‘What a fabulous friend!’, she thought.  If Shri Krishna could sense his friend Draupadi’s worry from afar, He would definitely be knowing about her own injury! Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a friend like Him in real life?  Aarti closed her eyes, and thinking about Shri Krishna, directed that warm feeling of love from her heart, towards her injury, imagining Shri Krishna tending to the wound lovingly. She didn’t even know when she slipped into a peaceful sleep chanting ‘Hare Krishna…’ ‘Hare Krishna’…’Hare Krishna…’

Aarti woke up at 8 A.M the next day to feel that her leg didn’t feel heavy anymore. It took her a few seconds to realise that not only was the pain gone, but the fresh wound that was secreting puss until a few hours ago, had dried up. Without any ointment, or medicines. Unable to believe, Aarti stared at the dried up wound for a few minutes. Then touched it. The wound felt flaky, and hard, as if it was an old wound.

To this day, it is very difficult for Aarti to explain this miraculous phenomenon in words.  This was a kind of miracle that she had seen in films and read in books, and never really experienced in real life, until that day.

Of course, that night as she performed the first play of her life,  she wore those high-heeled leather shoes again, but this time without any hindrances. Shri Krishna took care of everything. What a fabulous friend!