If you really want to understand Religion, ask someone who refused it – 6 Nov 12

Yesterday I mentioned, as before already several times, that religion will always try to make you a blind follower, not thinking deeply about what is written or told, just believing it. They want to avoid you finding mistakes and flaws and asking about it. And that is people who say they are religious, are blind believers who ignore the flaws in the logic of religion. That can be from one’s own decision to blindly believe, because one has been fooled by a religious leader or because one has grown up in religion and never knew anything else.

I first of all want to address those who were born into a religious family, just like me. I know how you feel about religion. It is just a normal and usual part of your life. There is no other way than accepting what you have been told as a small child. You will simply believe what your parents believed, too.

For me, growing up in the religious town Vrindavan, it was never a question to think out of the borders of religion. Everyone around me was religious, my family and friends, everyone in town. Nobody ever thought or said that religion could be wrong or mistaken, that it could all be a work of fiction. I never heard or read about anything that was against religion in my childhood and of course could only start my profession as a preacher because I was sure that what I told others was right and true. In such a situation you are far away from the thought of refusing religion.

For me it was the time in the cave that changed this. Maybe the full isolation from others and the extended time of meditation made the thought grow in me that there could be something else, too. When I read the same scriptures after my time in the cave, I read the same words but finally saw something else in them and slowly, with time, realized that I could not anymore believe in what was written there.

If you grew up with religion, allow yourself to see another perspective, too! In India we compare your situation with the perspective of a frog in a well. For the frog, the well is the complete world. He doesn’t know that there are meadows and lakes behind the walls of the well and if he does not decide to make a big leap out of this comfortable world, he will never know the truth.

For everyone who chose to be a blind follower or who was fooled by someone into believing: you probably won’t even recognize that you are following blindly, thinking you have found the great truth, the miracles that save your soul and can make you at peace or even wealthy through faith. You definitely need to open your eyes again and accept that you willingly closed them in front of the flaws of religion.

If any of you believers really want to understand religion, you should study what you are exactly believing in. Find out in depth what is written there and if you find things you don’t like, ask yourself if you can really blindly accept them. Because that is what you are asked to do by religion. Don’t only talk to those who want to make you believe, talk to those, too, who consciously decided not to believe. Make an experiment and see religion through the eyes of someone who has refused it.

In the end you will realize that you are not the frog in the well anymore. You know now that you can go beyond the borders that you thought were the end of the world. And if you don’t decide to keep your eyes closed, you will take that big leap and cross the borders, jumping towards freedom of choice.

Experiences are for experiencing, not for speaking about them – 18 Apr 12

With some of the Ashram guests I lately talked about my experience in the cave. They had seen the cave, had been in the building that is ‘the cave’, they saw the door which had been closed with bricks and the L-shaped window through which I had got food. They had been down to the room where I had spent most of my time and which we now use for meditations. Having seen all that, they still had some questions.

As usual, one of the questions was what experiences I had made in that time in the cave. I have really heard this question already thousands of times. It is not any wonder – people are curious what you do, feel and experience when you spend three years and 108 days in isolation. The reality is however that I can never really give a big answer to this question.

Of course the time in the cave has changed my life. Of course it was an amazing, fantastic experience that I would not want to miss. It is an important part of my life. I am however not able to describe much more than that. One way in which I have used to explain this inability is to say that you cannot explain anybody what the taste of ‘sweet’ is until he has not experienced that himself. I cannot tell you how chocolate tastes until you have had a piece of chocolate in your mouth yourself.

It would be difficult for anybody who has not made this experience himself to know how it was for me. At the same time however I feel that I am also not able to convey that experience because I am now in a fully different state of mind than in that time. You can imagine, I guess, that you come into a fully different mental situation when you meditate for such a long time, only interrupting the Mantras for the fulfilling the basic urge of the body for sleeping, eating, washing yourself or going to toilet. After coming out and getting in touch with people again, my mental state changed again and I re-adapted to life outside the cave. I took the changes along that had happened to me but I feel that it may be impossible for me to explain or describe my experience because it was so different.

In an attempt to understand, our visitors asked whether I saw the time in the cave, when looking back on it, as a long or short period. Did i feel it was a long time, a big part of my life or rather a short time. I answered that I cannot say it like this. It is a fixed block of time in my life. While I was in the cave, I lost the feeling of time. It did not matter whether it was day or night anymore. It did not matter anymore whether I had been in there for an hour or a day, a month or a year already.

They asked me whether there was ever a moment in which I thought ‘Now it is only 2 months more’ or something similar. If I had been thinking like this, I know I would have got crazy. This is another thing that I can surely tell you about my time in the cave: I lived only in the present moment, not counting back how long I had been in the cave and not counting how long I would still be in the cave. It was just me in the present moment.

Inner Changes need Time, even in a Fast Food Culture – 18 Aug 11

When people get to know that I have spent three years and 108 days in a cave, not in touch with anybody and fully away from the normal world, they are often astonished about the long time. They ask me how it was to be with myself for such a long and sometimes also if it was really necessary to go for that long. Hearing these questions I often have to smile and think that people nowadays don’t have patience. They want everything instantly, right now. But most things need time!

It is not really very surprising that people have such questions and thoughts. Look at today’s society, especially here in the West. Do people really have time for anything? They are in stress, they have thousands of things on their mind which they try to do at the same time or as quickly as possible and they rarely take time even for eating in peace or being with their family. There is a scheduled time which they spend on their body, maybe a few hours in the gym every week. Why would anybody really spend a longer time period doing something for their mind and soul?

You can read this accuse for today’s society everywhere: it is a fast food culture. Whatever it is you have to give, give it to me quickly. I don’t have time, my time is precious, just hand it over, now! This is not how spirituality, inner peace and a balance in body, mind and soul works. It cannot. People want everything instant. Instant relaxation, instant enlightenment, instant Samadhi. What they don’t realize is that everything takes time. Real inner peace is a process and does not come to you by pressing one button, like switching on the light or by taking a pill, like a pain killer. It is a process and you have to spend some time for it.

When I went into the cave, it took me three or four months to get used to being in the cave, to get tuned with the atmosphere, with the new rhythm of my life. The feeling of time and the memories of the time outside slowly faded and vanished with time while I repeated my mantras. The same process had to take place when I came out of the cave. Another change, again slowly and in a process that took months until my whole being was out of the cave again. I had spent a lot of time with myself and my God and of course I had gained a lot but now I had to put this into real life, adjust my life again to match what was going on outside.

It took me several months to make this big change into complete solitude without anything that distracted me. What you want is to make a change in the middle of distraction. You want to come into peace while the world around you is stressing you as always. You have pressure and want to come out of it with as little change as possible. Let me tell you, you will need to make a change and it will take time. Inner changes usually don’t happen overnight. If you consciously want to make a change, you need to actively work on it. It doesn’t work instantly. There is no button, no pill, no magic spell. If you want to bring more love into your life, you need to remind yourself in each conversation that you have and with each thought or feeling that you have to fill it with love. If you want to have less stress in your life, you need to teach your body and mind to calm down and take things easy. Relaxing has to be learned, too!

Whatever you do, take your time to do it properly. It doesn’t matter if you feel at first as though you did not succeed. You did not fail and progress will show if you keep on working on it. Think positively and realize that you have enough time for anything you wish to do. Do it in peace and with patience.

Holiness of Power Places is a Creation of your Mind – 4 Aug 11

Some time ago, Ramona and I were talking about ‘power places’, locations on this earth that people call holy, very powerful or in some other special in their atmosphere. These places exist in every country. If they have anything to do with religion, people make pilgrimages to go there and often have a very uplifting sensation when they go there. What is it however that makes these places special?

These places can be everywhere around the world. You need to listen to people to find them. Many are just obvious, like Stonehenge in Scotland, where people have such feeling. Vrindavan is such a place for many people, especially Hindus. There are places of the American Indians in North America that are used as such power places and also in Australia where the Aborigines used them for their own rituals and worship. There are power places in Egypt and also here in Germany. They are really everywhere and sometimes you find temples, sometimes just stones, a ground or even a lake or river. Often it is naturally beautiful, sometime it is made by man.

They all have one thing in common: religious or spiritual people believe that when they are at those places, they feel great energy, they feel peaceful, they can relax and have an experience of a kind of holiness. They tell it to others, who then want to have this experience, too! And yes, when they arrive there, they also feel the energy.

As I see it however, this is mostly an illusion. Someone told you that there would be great energy and when you were there, you felt it, too. You had this in mind before you even went there! This is even stronger with religious places. Vrindavan is the place of Krishna, Jerusalem the place of Jesus and they both make you feel holy. If some other place was mentioned in your scripture, you would go to that place. Holiness is not in the place, it is in your mind!

Apart from this, there are of course places that are breathtaking by their nature or by what humans built there. There are places that are beautiful and others that fill you with awe for creation, the universe or what people have achieved in a time that lay far before ours. This all can happen but the feeling of holiness is in our minds.

In my belief, you can also create such a place in your home. You create an altar or you take one room of your home that you only enter for certain occasions or in such a mood and you have such a place. Those places can be very individual. They are of course also connected with your experiences at that place. Maybe you have been standing under the same tree many times to make important decisions of your life. Thus that tree has become a power place for you. Or you always went to the same spot at the river in order to relax and thus it became your place, a place that it special for you. It is a very normal river or a very normal village, for other people uninteresting but for you very special!

The cave in which I have spent more than three years in meditation is a power place, too, if you see it like this. When you go down there, you can easily relax and go in meditation. Why? Because I spent so much time there and charged it with energy so that you feel this energy still today? No, because of its atmosphere, its surrounding and because you know of this story. It is real, you can relax there easily but it is a place that we created on our own. It was not built on any certain place that I believed to be holy. I still don’t think that it is holy but of course its atmosphere helps you to go in meditation.

I don’t really see a problem with people going to such power places for their spiritual experiences. If they enjoy it, it is nice. The problem is however that many people get addicted to this feeling. They feel that they can only get peace if they go to those places and they run there whenever they can. When they are not there, they feel something is going wrong. In such situations, religions also create more of this illusion and people really are unhappy when they cannot go there regularly.

This is why I want to tell you that it is only an illusion. Realize this illusion and you won’t depend on those places anymore. You will be free to feel good without that place, too! It is only your mind that makes you feel good there. Feel good in your home, feel good wherever you are!

My first sexual Experience after 30 Years of natural Celibacy – 19 Jun 11

One day my German friend took me to a woman who was his friend. She had a guest in that time, another woman, and when my friend invited them to come to visit us the next day for dinner, they both accepted.

So on that day, we were all sitting together, had dinner and were talking. It got late and my friend’s wife said she would go to bed. My friend was the next one to go to bed and finally one of the women said, she would leave, too. Her friend, the woman whom I had only met the day before, said she would stay a little bit longer. And so we were sitting there, on the couch, next to each other and she while talking, she moved a bit closer to me.

I pretended to be cool and experienced even though I was not at all. I was so excited in that situation and was thinking tonight, in this November night in 2001, that would happen which had not happened in the last 30 years. I was showing as if I am used to sitting with women like this, as if I daily did it but the truth was this it was the first time.

I remembered the talk of my Indian friend who had been my first host here in Germany. Once he told me that people were much more open towards sex here than in India. If you got to know a girl and started a friendship with her, you could at some point also ask her to have sex with you. She would not mind it and in most cases would be ready for it. That’s what he knew, the Indian man who was living and working here for a bit more than six months. That was his impression in this new culture. When I asked him if he had had such an encounter in those six months, he said very innocently ‘No’ and I knew he was not lying.

I was much newer to this country and culture than my friend and there was this woman, who was friend of my friend’s friend, sitting next to me on the sofa. I didn’t really know her, my English was still not good enough to have a big conversation and I did not have the courage to touch her even though I was very curious and wanted to. Thank God she started and took my hand to hold it in hers. I still pretended to be cool and experienced and thought it would be best to do what she did. I reacted on the same level to her action and held her hand. Anyway, what else could happen, after a while we hugged and were soon lying on the sofa, our clothes lying around us, and I had my first experience.

I had not told her that it was my first time before we started and when I told her afterwards, she was surprised and said that I seemed very experienced to her. I was happy and proud that I had played a good role. I smiled and answered ‘You know, I come from the land of Kama Sutra and have studied that’. She smiled back and replied ‘Yes, I knew you are a Tantra Master!’ It was not the right situation to say something but by myself I thought ‘What does this have to do with Tantra?’ I had not yet understood that people in the west think Tantra means sex.

I was not sad to lose my virginity but on the contrary I was happy for not being celibate any more. Celibacy came to my life naturally, not because I was following any tradition of celibacy. My parents were obviously not celibate, they gave life to me and three siblings. I was not following any other tradition than my family tradition and they wanted me to get married already when I turned 18. This was however not my interest. Instead I wanted to travel and preach. Later I went into the cave, so I just did not have any opportunity to lose my virginity.

We fell asleep on the sofa and woke up in the morning, when my German friend came down to make coffee. He waved and smiled at me and I smiled back, saying Good Morning.

Feeling easy and comfortable with religious-minded People in London – 29 May 11

I remember that I celebrated my birthday in that year, the 14th October 2001, in London with that family who was expecting offspring soon. I was anyway there to give program and several people had gathered as usual to my lectures and rituals. They surprised me with the very first birthday cake of my life. In India we don’t have this tradition of eating birthday cakes, but I knew from television or stories that I had heard, that this tradition exists in western culture. So in London my birthday was celebrated in this way for the very first time. I think I remember that they had even written ‘Swami Ji’ on top of it. I enjoyed that celebration very much.

It was all in all a really nice time in London. I had several programs in different homes and houses in London, always with religious and spiritual Indian families. I liked being with them especially because it was different from what I knew from India but still familiar enough.

I was actually trying to be as much time as possible out of India as it had become too intense for me there. As I mentioned, after the cave I did not feel comfortable in my guru role anymore. In India, whenever someone came to meet me and I was sitting on a sofa or a chair, my visitors would sit on the floor in front of me. They would sit at my feet, looking up at me, wishing and believing that some wisdom, energy and strength would flow from me to them. This had started making me feel really uncomfortable after my time in the cave and it was this feeling which had made me leave India like this in the first place.

This was different in London. They were all religious Indian people but they were nevertheless a little bit western, too. They had respect and gave me love as a holy person but while I was sitting on the sofa alone in India, they were sitting next to me in London. They did not sit lower and in front of me but sat next to me, on the same level. There were still many traditional rituals and behavior but there seemed to be much less drama than in the scene in India. I felt more comfortable and felt as though I had made friends, rather than disciples.

In that time I had the feeling that it is really much better for me to do program in Europe, in the UK and in other places than in India, although the groups were much smaller.

While I was in Great Britain I also spoke to my Indian friend in Germany on phone again. He told me that I was welcome in Itzehoe, where he lived, and that I should come by and stay some days with him again. I decided to do this and this is how I found myself again in a plane to Germany, when all my program in London was over.

Personal Experiences make your Belief strong – 15 May 11

I mentioned that I had been doing touch healing already before my time in the cave and that I have got a lot of positive feedback. There was one experience which was very personal and which I would like to tell you about so that you maybe understand a bit better how this way of healing developed.

In one of the years before I went into the cave, maybe 1996 or 1995, my late sister Para discovered that she has a knot in her breast. She went to a doctor to have him examine it and after his examination he said that he could cut it out. That would be a relatively small operation and the best thing to do.

Of course we immediately made an appointment at the hospital in Agra. My sister was supposed to stay overnight, so we had rented a room nearby and had come with all the things necessary for such a stay in hospital.

Before the surgery however, the doctor did another examination and found that it was now not only one knot but several and spread in both breasts. The doctor looked worried and cancelled the operation right away. He said “She is still a young woman, only 18 years old, I cannot cut out that much. If it had been one, I would have removed it but now it spread. We should wait some time and if it doesn’t reduce in size or stop growing, we need to make a biopsy and find out what it really is.”

So we left the hospital, checked out of the hotel again and left Agra to go back to Vrindavan with a feeling of worry and unease. What if that was cancer? Something that could spread further and further through her body?

At home in Vrindavan there was also one of my closest disciples who had come to stay with us for some time. We told her why we had come back so quickly and she asked me why I did healing sessions with so many other people and had helped so many of them, too, but didn’t even try with my own sister. I considered this and in the evening, when my sister looked at me and said that I could try, I did.

When she went to the doctor the next time, some weeks later, he examined her and told her with a bright smile that all knots had vanished. We were all very relieved and happy about it and of course, we thought it was the power of the Mantras, the prayers, and the touch which had healed her of this. She did not have this problem afterwards anymore.

Today I can imagine that it had been some hormonal change that had made the knots disappear or any other process in the body. The prayers and mantras that I spoke may have made her more calm and relaxed and helped her overall well-being. I was however sure that it directly affected her physically, too, and so I continued reciting more and more mantras. I went into the cave, did even more mantra meditation and also used it in the healing sessions that I gave after my time in the cave, for example in London.

Positive Effects of Spiritual Healing – 8 May 11

When I told the woman in London that she should pray the Hanuman Chalisa, I myself deeply believed that this prayer would help her. When she reported back to me, several months later, that it had helped her and that she was now happy in her life without any black magic or love spells, it was not only she who believed that this was the power of the old prayer, I did, too. I was religious and believed that the Hanuman Chalisa had helped her, even though I did not believe that the love spell had had any other effect than a psychological one.

This was how I helped people in that time, already before my time in the cave. Sometimes we did a ceremony or ritual together, speaking many Mantras for health, well-being, good luck, success and prosperity and at other times only I spoke the Mantras while they were sitting there in meditation. And then I also did touch healing, against pain in certain body parts. If someone had back pain, I would touch their back and recite Mantras, if they had knee pain, I would touch their knee. People decided whether they wanted to roll up the trousers, take them off or just keep it on and I put my hand on the trousers.

My goal and aim was clear: I wanted to help people and I believe I did. I got a lot of positive feedback and people actually and in reality got relief from their pain.

In the whole time that I gave spiritual healing sessions, before and after my time in the cave, until today, approximately 85% of all people gave me a positive feedback. The expressions ranged from ‘I feel very relaxed’ to ‘I feel like floating in the air, my aura looks much cleaner and I feel connected to my angels’. Maybe 10% of people said that they did not know yet, that maybe it gave them something and maybe not. They were not sure. And only 5% or even less people said that it did not have any effect on them and that this did not help them at all.

Of course there was also media coverage about what I was doing – many times my hosts would organize TV or newspaper interviews. I remember an Irish journalist who had a little crush on me and wrote a very enthusiastic article about the healing session that she had.

Just as the woman who asked me in London to protect her from her black magic love spell, these people came to me with the expectation that this could be something that would help them and that is how they had all those emotions. Today I may think different about this and realize the work of the mind and the psychological process behind this recovery but in that time it was clear to me that this was the work of God through me and that this is what I was there to do.

And so I did all of this. I gave lectures and did ceremonies and afterwards people approached me and asked me for help. I came to their houses to do ceremonies there for their home and family, I did rituals with them and their children to pray for a good future and I touched them and prayed for them to heal their pain. With every positive feedback I got a confirmation that strengthened my belief further. It worked! I was happy that I could help through this work and I thanked God that I could give people relief, trust and love in this way and with His support.

Outspoken Nature can create Enemies – 4 May 11

I would like to share some of my thoughts today about the things which are going on behind the curtain of my diary entries and this blog. At the same time I want to tell you that there may soon be stories about me and my family organizing orgies, being involved in sex scandals and other absurd allegations online. Let me explain you how I get to this assumption.

I have written a lot of entries in which I criticized many different people and their actions. It started in August 2009, when we were in Arizona. There I wrote and spoke about Nithyananda for the first time however without mentioning his name. I had had a bad experience with his followers and my main point of focus was that I was and still am against human worship. I believe that everyone is equal and nobody is higher or greater than others.

Since the first January 2008 I have written this diary daily and without interruption. I feel a certain responsibility for creating awareness in our society and this is why from time to time I also wrote about fake gurus, about magic and miracles performed on the name of religion and more. Even when I was still a religious-minded person, I was always against creating superstition and with all the experience that I had made with such things in my life, I had a lot to share.

In the beginning I took care not to mention anybody’s name. Last year however I started writing names and identities, too, because I wanted to make clear who I am talking about. Otherwise followers tend to think I am writing about everyone else, just not about their own guru.

Today my blog has become a place for many such revelations. I raise my voice not only about particular persons but also about organizations, political parties, governments and institutions. From the 1220 diary entries I have written until this day, the number of those articles in which I openly criticize such a person or group of people is comparatively small but they remain those which have most feedback and stir the highest emotions.

Many people love it but in my outspoken way, I have unintentionally and without saying or writing anything wrong also created many enemies. They may be followers of those who I am writing against, I don’t really know. I don’t know these people. They are not those who silently leave and simply stop reading my words, they are also not those who write their own opinion in a nice and polite message to which I can then reply that everyone has a right to have their own opinion. They are those who write angrily in comments, social networks or on their own websites.

When I talk about fraud promises, fake miracles and the history of sex scandals of different Hindu gurus in India, they say that I get paid by Christian missionaries.

When I talk about wrong concepts in the Christian religion or the Islam, they believe me to be a Hindu, angry that Christians and Moslems live in my country.

When I write about the BJP or the RSS in India and their fanatic Hindu ideas, they say I am funded by the Congress party. When I write about the corruption in the Congress, they say I am member of the BJP.

I have however not any such allegiance, not to any party and not to any religion. I am only human and believe in love. I belong only to love and follow only that. I don’t sell my words to the highest bidder. I appreciate the good sides of all religions, parties, institutions and individuals but I criticize and condemn the negative ones alike.

There are many different forums and websites on the internet where people write similar opinions. If you see the authors there, they are nearly always writing with an alias or anonymously. This possibility of hiding one’s identity has positive and negative sides. On one hand it is good for the authors, as it gives these people a platform to express themselves and share their experiences without exposing their identity to potential attacks of the people they are writing against. On the other hand you never know whether that person is real or just inventing a story.

But here I am, sitting with my website online, my name and picture displayed publicly, my identity, my history, background and my opinion out in the open. There is no way to hide anything and I don’t want to hide anything either. I lived my life honestly and am sharing it here with you very openly. I am writing about what I did, who I was before and who I am now. I am always in a process of change and my mind keeps on developing. So there is nothing that I want to hide.

I have however now realized that some people prefer hiding their identity to avoid such attacks that I have already written about before, too.

Authors who write only about one certain person or organization have only that group of people against them. I however write about the system which is wrong in so many different places and thus have created a lot of enemies in different organizations and different parts of the world. There is not only one person against me but many.

Sometimes they are very angry and want me to delete a diary entry but we take care in writing and make sure that there are only facts, personal experiences and my personal opinion in those articles. And in that case I see no reason why I should delete any of my entries.

Those people sometimes start writing on social networks and their own websites about me. There they don’t only abuse me but also my family. We have read insults for my brothers Yashendu and Purnendu as well as for my wife Ramona but also for our children and the charity project. They wonder whether I was really in the cave although there are videos and thousands of people have seen it. They question the reason of calling myself a Swami when I am not a Hindu although I have explained even in a diary post that I don’t care if you call me just Balendu. They ask what kind of visa Ramona, a German citizen, has for coming to India although we are married and spouses get a PIO card without any problem. They say it looks like military when our children do yoga, just because we bought a sports dress for everyone in the same style, as they could not afford buying one themselves. They believe our children look malnourished, probably because they are not overweight as so many children are nowadays. You can rest assured that we feed them well and even take care of their medical checkups. I really wonder what this all has to do with what I am writing about. The list of such statements is already very long and most of them are just ridiculous.

Obviously these people always write with a fake name or anonymously. One of those comments had me write today’s diary. I was told by one person that it was not any problem for them to start creating stories about me and my family, too, and spread them around the internet.

So do not wonder if in future you find stories from any person about me and my family. Maybe they write about sex parties and orgies during our chakra dance party or that we actually run a brothel at our Ashram. You never know what they can think of and they can write anything from any name with the intention of harming us. The good thing however is that everybody can see when it was published. The internet will always keep this record. Was it before or after I wrote about their guru, organization or group? I will not wonder if at some point such stories will appear because there are many people who would like to write those things.

There are however just as many and even more who support me. From their love and appreciation I get the courage to write more. I am very thankful to those people who support me in this, all my friends from all over the world who are happy that I boldly speak out. To those who mention our website and name on websites, forums and blogs.

We even get emails in which we are asked to write more about other fake gurus, in which victims and opponents of such groups give us names, stories and websites so that we can publish them on our platform and thus make them public for many to read. In this way it can save many people from bad experiences.

I am happy to have your support and to read your comments which inspire me to write more. If you want to share your story yourself, you can write and post it in www.fake-guru.com, a forum that we opened for exactly this purpose. Those who want me to write about someone on my diary, please send me email to info@jaisiyaram.com and provide your information in detail. You can trust that I will keep your name secret. For me to be sure however that you are a real person, I would love to read your name rather than reading from an anonymous person. If you convince me that there is someone who did wrong and thinks wrong, I will give my support to the cause of making this public.

I am not against any singular person or organization but against a system, an ideology and a certain mindset. Thank you again for your support!

Radhashtami 2001 – Feeling Alone in the Middle of a Crowd – 17 Apr 11

I was happy to be back in Vrindavan in the third week of August. As mentioned I had celebrated Krishna’s birthday in the Hindu temple in Thailand but in time for Radha’s birthday I was back in Vrindavan. Radhasthami is anyway a special day of celebration in Vrindavan, the town where Radha and Krishna found each other. And Radhashtami is also the birthday of Swami Haridas, a great musician, poet and spiritual person who lived in the 16th century.

Radhashtami has thus always been a very special day, already in my childhood and not only because of the celebrations in our town but particularly in my family, as it is also the birthday of my grandfather Sri Bindu Ji. Ever since my grandfather has left his body on 1st December 1964, my father celebrates his birthday every year. So we grew up with this day being one of the biggest celebrations of the year and the months before filled with preparations for it.

We gave orders to print big posters, hoardings and invitation cards months before. I remember going out in Vrindavan as a teenager with my brothers and friends to put up posters all around the town. We went on our bicycles and I even remember driving a rickshaw once, full with posters and glue. It was our excuse to be out until late and we were proud of our work. I also remember sitting together with friends and writing addresses by hand on the envelopes of invitations which were then sent out to spiritual people in the whole country.

Among our guests were big gurus and spiritual celebrities who felt proud to be invited on this occasion. They came to honour my grandfather and of course were also happy to come to Vrindavan in this festive time. They were happy to come and we were happy to invite them. This kind of celebration is like a conference. The most important invited people get a few minutes each for speaking on stage and in this way there is a daily program of five or six hours for several days. After all our advertising there were always many people and we had many big celebrations.

I had chosen this special day for going into the cave in 1997. For the following three Radhashtami celebrations I was in the cave, so after coming out on 24th December 2000, this Radhashtami should be the first anniversary celebration of entering the cave that I would actually participate in personally.

We had a big stage set up in the Ashram gardens. Of course everybody was eager to hear from me about my experience in the cave and after that when traveling out of India. I thus had a speech on stage and then was talking off stage with my disciples in a more informal way. They wanted to know more about my future ideas and whether I would like to continue my journeys.

I enjoyed meeting people whom I had not seen for a long time and had also in a way looked forward to this celebration. While I had been in Thailand, a bit bored and lonely, I had thought of Radhashtami and of how many people would be there and how nice the celebration would be.

After the time in the cave I had however gained another point of perspective on all those religious ceremonies, rituals and everything surrounding it. It was as if I had earlier been in the middle of all this and now was standing a bit at the side, watching it. I had become an observer while others thought me to still be a part of it. And from this point of view, the actions of many of those highly estimated spiritual people seemed a bit like a drama. I had been a close part of this all, and was still among them at that moment but at the same time I felt a little bit at the side of this group of people, as if my time in the cave had loosened this connection. It was as if I was alone in the middle of the crowd and whenever I realized this feeling, it confused me. I felt it but could not yet fully analyze why.

It was nevertheless a great celebration and lots of fun. I met and talked with so many people whom I had seen for the last time when I entered the cave, that day exactly four years ago.