Archive for spiritual

Guru Baba

Posted in Mystical Experience, Unknown with tags , , , , , , on April 8, 2012 by javedbabar

Guru Baba didn’t know who these people were. They stood before him expecting something, or maybe he was expecting something from them; it was difficult to say. It always paid to be friendly so he decided to smile. The people seemed pleased when he did this.

They certainly looked fancy, all dressed in robes and wearing elaborate hats. The one in red pressed his palms together, the one in white made finger shapes in the air, and the one in black rocked back and forth. They were still waiting for something. Guru Baba raised his right hand, and their motions stopped immediately, then they all looked lost.

The one in red had a bald head. He looked at the other two for permission and stepped forward, and said in a sort of Indian accent, “Guru Baba, it is a great pleasure to see you again. The last occasion was not a happy situation. My people couldn’t take more oppression and had risen up spontaneously. The crackdown was brutal, but your involvement transformed the situation completely. The Chinese government saw their errors, and granted our autonomy. When my time comes, I can now expire with satisfaction. My life’s work is done. On behalf of Tibetans, our Chinese brothers, and peace-loving sentient beings everywhere, I thank you.” Tears rolled down his cheeks. Guru Baba wondered what he was crying about, and also what he was talking about.

The one in white wore a tall pointy hat. He now stepped forward. Guru Baba admired his bejewelled staff. He would like one like that. Maybe the one in white would let him hold it for a while, but before he could ask him, he said, “Guru Baba, I have much to thank you for. When I became the Vicar of Christ, the Church was in a fractured state. Contentious issues such as abortion, homosexuality, women priests, and paedophile priests, were ripping our holy community apart. But your intra-faith work was invaluable. Your universal principles of belief became the glue that held together our altar of faith. The holy brethren of the Church Universal honour your noble person.” Guru Baba nodded and smiled at this glamorous man. Should he ask now to borrow his stick?

The one in black stepped forward. Guru Baba liked his beard. It was long and black and curly. He also liked his wide-brimmed hat that seemed like a furry flying saucer, and his accent that went “khh”. He said, “Guru Baba, my people were exiled from the Holy Land for a hundred generations. Some of our faithful returned but didn’t find peace there. And the last few years have been especially painful for us and for our Palestinian brothers. There are few excuses for both our and their inhumanity. Thank you for bringing us together at last – for bringing peace to our homes.” Guru Baba liked this man speaking with “khh”. He wondered where this Holy Land was. He would like to visit it.

The ones in red, white, and black repeated their earlier motions – pressing palms, making finger shapes, and rocking back and forth – and stepped back slowly. Guru Baba wondered if they were going home now. And if so, would they come back tomorrow?

Three men in blue suits replaced them. Why were they all wearing the same colour, he wondered? The first one stepped forward and held out his hand. Guru Baba held out his hand too, which the first man in blue shook gently, and said, “Guru Baba, you have brought us great honour by making this land your home. We were a vast nation in terms of land area, but under populated. Our larger neighbour was always more powerful, and the chaos they fell into was disastrous for the world. Thank you for suggesting this brave solution. I was not sure that my government was ready to serve an additional 300 million people, but the United States of Canadia is now the world’s most stable and affluent nation. That’s why I have come to Lucerne today, to relay the appreciation of all of its citizens.” His chatter rung a faint bell. Yes, he remembered coming to this beautiful valley. But when and why he couldn’t say.

The second man in blue suit approached him. He used too many s’s in his wordage, which made it sound like he lisped. What language was he speaking? It was a sort of English. He said, “Guru Baba, as the President of Europe, I thank you for your work in stabilizing our currency. It was vital to our Union, so hard won after murderous great wars.” He carried on like this for a while. The third man in blue suit was a black man. Didn’t he look smart in his suit? He said, “As Chief of the United Nations, I would like to thank you for bringing peace to the world…” and other things.

More people came to see him. There were scientists, musicians, artists, writers, dancers, sportsmen, media and business people, and others. They were all friendly people, but he didn’t recognize any of them. Should he? One of them held a newspaper saying “World in shock: Guru Baba has Dementia and is Dying”. What was dementia? It sounded serious.

Then he saw some people he recognized, but they were far away. Somebody was being mean to them. A tall man in a black suit, with a shaved head and a gun, was shouting at them. These little people – what were they called again, children? He beckoned them over. They were excited but scared. Some were laughing and some were crying. Both were sounds he knew. They were the sounds of the universe announcing itself. Wailing sadness and screaming hope. Comedy and tragedy. These were the people that he had wanted to see, not all of those others. Those men in robes and suits talked a lot but knew nothing. These little ones only laughed and cried, which showed that they understood everything. He stepped down from his throne and kissed their feet. He was pleased to meet these little gods.

Upstairs / Downstairs

Posted in Unknown with tags , , , , , on March 18, 2012 by javedbabar

They should be called bi-laws rather than bylaws, thought Forbes. It seemed ridiculous to have an Upstairs and a Downstairs, but he had no choice. The Village had divided his shop into two parts.

“Good morning!” he said to a new customer. The man was stocky, about fifty, with curly grey hair. He nodded to Forbes and turned away. Forbes wondered if this customer was an Upstairs or a Downstairs person – it was impossible to say when they first came in. There were people who rushed in and headed Downstairs before anyone could see them. Others rushed in and bought a book or gift from Upstairs, then headed right out again. People who sauntered in were also of two types. Those who browsed Upstairs books, feeling inspired and delighted, found a work they resonated with, purchased it and left. Yet there were also those who walked around Upstairs like bored children, picking at different sections, summoning courage to head to the darkened windowless room downstairs.

Forbes didn’t bother his customers, only when it seemed like they needed help, or when there was a hot girl, or when he was bored. The stocky man worked quickly through the Sacred Texts section, New Age sages, spoken word audio, international and domestic music CD’s, meditation DVD’s, tarot and oracle sets, musical instruments – touching a crystal bowl and gong, making them sing and shimmer, and spiritual fiction. He seemed particularly drawn to colourful, repackaged series – Conversations with God and its sequels, Paulo Coelho’s works, and the many editions of Deepak Chopra. He spent time flicking through an Eckhart Tolle, but was facing away, and Forbes couldn’t see which one it was. Now the stocky man was hovering as if caught between two worlds. He could be making a purchase decision, but Forbes knew much better than that. He said, “Are you doing ok there, Sir? May I help you in any way?”

“Em, yes,” said the man. He was still handsome and quite well groomed, but maybe not getting the attention he needed. “Can I go Downstairs? I mean, can I just go down there, or do I need to ask first, like I’m doing?”

“Please go straight down,” said Forbes. “But thank you for asking. I’ll be down in a moment.”

The man’s eyes widened. He said, “Why are you coming down?” Forbes opened his mouth but was interrupted. “I thought this was just a store. I don’t want any funny business.” He had the look of a haunted child.

“It’s bylaws, Sir. Because of the nature of materials Downstairs, and also because it is subterranean retail space, there must be a staff member present. And I am the sole staff member.”

“But then who will look after the Upstairs section?”

“The Upstairs will take care of itself, Sir. Thank you for your concern.” He couldn’t resist winking and adding, “Maybe you could stay up here while I’m down there, Sir? I like it down there too.”

The customer nodded initially, and then said in a quiet voice, “I think you’re making fun of me.”

“Just bantering with my customer, Sir. Trying to make you feel comfortable. People are nervous when entering this shop. Isn’t it strange that with all the things you see daily on TV – drought, famine, poverty and disease – rather than being ashamed by their huge houses, big cars, fat salaries, and expensive clothes, people are embarrassed by the materials Downstairs, dealing with the most natural activity in the world; the ultimate recreation. It’s as invigorating as an aerobics class, and on par with yoga for flexibility. I know our materials depict mostly couples, but there are also plenty of items for people to use themselves, in different sizes, shapes, scents, and colours.”

The customer looked haunted again. “Hey, what do you mean by that? I don’t want to use anything on myself. This was my wife’s idea. She’s scared to come in here herself.” The customer was shocked by what he’d said. He hadn’t planned to bring his wife into this.

Forbes said, “I’m sorry Sir. Sometimes I talk too much. I get excited whenever a customer comes in. Please feel free to stay Upstairs or go Downstairs as you please. I’m sorry for bothering you.”

“You’re not bothering me, pal. I’m just nervous, as you said. Thanks for chatting. I think I’ll head down there now. I promise to behave myself. See you when you come down.”

Forbes smiled and nodded. He always preferred Downstairs people. They came via Upstairs – so had seen all the spiritual stuff, and were humble and somewhat ashamed. They were often gentle. The Upstairs people – who never went down – focussed on elevated realms, and could be judgemental. Some were cruel and repulsive. Downstairs people could be cruel too, but at least they weren’t repressed. Upstairs people spent their lives pondering, whereas Downstairs people preferred action. They explored and celebrated the living body, in all its glorious man- and woman-ifestations. Maybe a few too many ways – especially those dirty Europeans; was there a shortage of public toilets there – but who’s to judge? Forbes prided himself on the choice he offered Downstairs.

“Bloody Hell!” he heard the customer exclaim as he reached the floor below. This was a common reaction. Forbes had better head down there now. Don’t want to transgress the bi-law. Maybe he would even stay there this afternoon. Let the Upstairs people come Downstairs.

OM

Posted in Mystical Experience, Unknown, World Myths with tags , , , , , , on March 17, 2012 by javedbabar

“The highest calling is service,” said Ozwald Malchizedek, also known as OM. “Whether it’s at the grocery store or gas station, by your mailman or cleaner, the guy who comes to check your meters, or the cable girl. They all provide you with service. Even the guy in Bangalore selling you top value telephone packages.” His disciples giggled at his silly accent saying these last few words. Seven of them were crowded around him, at a table meant for six, at Chutney restaurant. It was Saturday night and every table was filled, but theirs was the only one with a bona fide holy man. People glanced over continually at the clean-shaven, bald-headed, dark-skinned man in pale blue robes.

“Are we not all servants, Master?” said a blonde female disciple, wearing a blue-glitter tikka, and matching sparkling sari.

“That’s a very good question, Shanti.” He closed his eyes and breathed deeply. “You could have also said, “Are we not all Masters, servant?” Shanti looked uncomfortable with this inversion, and looked away. “No, no. It is just the same. I am your Master but also your servant. Go ahead, say it.”

Shanti looked at him and said, “Are we not all Masters, servant?” She looked away again and said, “I don’t like saying that. It feels uncomfortable.” People laughed loudly at another table. A hunting story was in progress. Somewhat incongruous in a vegetarian restaurant.

“Well you must keep saying it till… Aah! Dinner has arrived.”

“Seven Regular Chutney Thalis,” said the waiter cheerfully, “And one Speical Chutney Thali with Fishy Goa?” OM nodded. “Who is the Special Thali for?” OM indicated himself. “Of course, I should have known. A Special Thali for a Special Guest.” OM nodded again. “I hope you enjoy your meal. Please call me if I can be of further service.”

OM raised his eyebrows and said, “See, this man knows about service.” The disciples looked at the waiter lovingly. He became self-conscious as he poured their water. A drop splashed up onto OM’s cheek, and rolled right down, leaving a white streak. He said, “Do not rely on anything in this material world. Not even spray tan.”

OM’s charm lay in his mysterious mix of great wisdom and utter foolishness. This has been the way of all Masters. The disciple’s task was to resonate with the truth apparent, whatever its form.

OM pointed to Shanti’s thali – a rectangular steel plate divided into sections – and said, “Each of us is like one food in this thali. Look, Shanti is the dal, Kim is the mixed vegetables, Simone is the rice, Tom is the roti, Christy is the salad, Gemma is the raita – I mean raita, not writer, though she is that too.” People laughed. “And Mata is the pickle. We are all in this life together, connected by a network of delicious relationships.” Another table laughed loudly. A drinking story.

“Shanti said, “What about you Master?”

OM looked confused, then closed his eyes and breathed deeply. “I am the thali,” he said.

Shanti said, “So you are the servant, carrying us all?” This didn’t come out like she’d expected. OM’s faced flickered. “Oh, sorry, that’s not what I meant really. I meant that you are supporting us all.” She was struggling, thinking of something more to say, and was visibly nervous. “Without the thali, we’d all fall down. Only the thali can…”

“Shanti, Shanti…” he said. “I know what you mean.” She relaxed and closed her eyes. OM took her hands in his and said, “Now let’s eat.” Nobody moved. OM said, “What’s wrong?”

Shanti said, “Aren’t you going to bless the food, Master? You usually do.”

“We are in an Indian restaurant.” OM beamed at them each in turn. “The food has been blessed already. But there’s no harm in blessing it again. Please all close your eyes. A –U – M – …”

Ozwalk Malchizedek was the first to finish. He ordered an extra portion of Fishy Goa. “Oh, so good,” he said. “Just like the dhabas in India.”

“Do they serve Goan food in Punjab?” said Shanti.

“What do you mean by that?” OM snapped.

“I just mean that Fishy Goa is a South Indian dish, and dhabas are popular in North India.”

“Punjabis eat anything,” OM said. “They have all kind of restaurants.” The table became quiet.

“Master,” said a disciple. “I’ve noticed that when you chant OM, it sounds like three syllables rather than one. Is my observation correct?”

It is incorrect! It is actually four syllables. First you open your mouth wide and say A to signify creation. Then purse your lips and say U for sustenance. Then close your mouth and say M for destruction. Then remain in Silence that is the ultimate servant, underlying them all. Let us all chant these holy syllables together.” The table reverberated to several long “A –U – M – …’s” Other tables stopped laughing and stared.

The waiter felt that it was time for their bill. The disciples fussed over it, but OM insisted on paying with his credit card. He said that they should all give him cash. The waiter gave Ozwald Malchizedek the card machine. He entered his 4-digit PIN: 2-8-6-0, equating to A – U – M – …. on the alpha-numeric keypad. The PIN was incorrect. He tried again with 2-8-6-1, then 2-8-6-*. Then again with 2-8-6-#. Each code didn’t work. He turned towards the waiter and said, “Thank you for reminding us of this most important truth. The fourth syllable – the space between all things – is a great mystery; the ground of all being and truly unknown. You have provided a valuable service to us tonight. Shanti, please use your card instead, and give him a good tip.”