Once I had the good fortune to study with Swami Krishnananda. He was a wandering sadhu, but he spent the months of January and February in Allahabad. Every 12 years a great spiritual festival, the Kumbha Mela, attracts millions of people from India and abroad. It is celebrated on the banks of the Ganga outside the city of Allahabad for a month in the winter. During the other 11 years, crowds of pilgrims, saints, and religious leaders from various traditions gather here to celebrate a month-long festival called Magh Mela.

One winter, Swami Krishnananda was camped on the bank of the Ganga during the Magh Mela with a group of his followers. A healthy young man from one of the eastern states of India came to visit this saint. For no apparent reason, this young man had become obsessed with the thought that he would soon meet with a fatal accident. After listening to his problem, Swamiji instructed the young man to stay with him for a while at his campsite on the riverbank.

After a few days, the young man became impatient. Early one morning, he decided to take the next train home. Swami Krishnananda strongly advised him not to go, but the young man argued that he needed to get back to his job. The saint pleaded, “You know, I have become old. These days, I am not feeling well. Here everyone is busy doing spiritual practices, and no one is taking care of me. I need some medicine from the town, and due to the heavy crowds, the mela authorities have put a ban on vehicles. You are a young man; you can walk a few miles. You are the only one who can bring my medicine to me.”

The young man still insisted on going. The saint said, “Life is short. I don’t know whether or not we’ll meet again. You have done so much for me these past few days. Why don’t you do this one final service for me?”

The young man agreed. He went to the town and got the medicine, but in the process, he missed his morning train. The next day brought news that the train had been wrecked, killing more than one hundred passengers and injuring several hundred more. The young man, overwhelmed with gratitude, now wanted to stay and serve the saint, but the holy man insisted that he go home.

A person with a pure heart is spontaneously and effortlessly in touch with the Divine within.

One day, in the course of conversation, I asked Swami Krishnananda if he knew the train accident would happen. He said, “No, however, for some reason, I was not comfortable with him leaving. The voice of my heart told me he must stay here. I simply listened to the voice of my heart. I knew that this voice could not be wrong, so I created this drama.”

A person with a pure heart is spontaneously and effortlessly in touch with the Divine within. This inner connection and the purity of his heart allow unconditional love to flow through him. Love supersedes regular laws of nature, including the law of karma that propels the wheel of destiny.

Source: Touched by Fire by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait

Further Reading

Touched by Fire

by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait, PhD

Pandit Tigunait’s autobiography recounts his remarkable journey from his boyhood home in Amar Garh, a traditional village in northern India, to his current life as the spiritual head of the Himalayan Institute. Along the way, you’ll share in his immersion in the Sanskrit scriptures, meet the saints and spiritual masters who teach him valuable meditation techniques, and witness some astonishing miracles and mystical events.

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