Growing up in a large family full of relatives, I was called by different names by different folks – some of the names being that of the Divine. It is a different story how I got the name that I have now, but that we will keep it aside for some other time. One of my maternal grandmother used to call me “Vittal Babu” since I was a kid all the way till she passed away. I have this very strong affinity towards the word “Vittalla” – a name for of Lord Vishnu – for reasons unknown to me. And needless to say I love the Vittala Bhajans!
This last week I was in Pune for an Apex program and had originally planned to go to Pandharpur given that it was just a days visit from Pune. However as things turned out, I changed plans and decided to fly back to Bangalore without making the trip to Pandharpur.
I reached Pune late night last wednesday and all along the city I could see banners with the images of Vittala. Not knowing Marathi, I didn’t knew what was written on them. It was only the next day, after reading the papers, I figured out that the varkaris (pilgrims) were on their yearly pilgrimage to Pandharpur – I had first read about Varkaris couple of years back and somehow this wish has stayed that I should probably walk with them at least for a few kilometeres to feel the energy and the joy. The desire to visit (Pandharpur) was there and I then thought why not go to one of the temples in the city itself, but that did not materialize either.
Once the course was over, Sunil who was with me in the course, offered very graciously to take me to the Art of Living Ashram (Triveni Ashram) on the outskirts of Pune. The Ashram is situated on the banks of river Indrayani and is a beautiful place to go to. Rishi Nitya Pragyaji was in the Ashram taking an Advanced Course and we went into his room to meet up with him. And there on the cabinet was a very beautiful carved statue of none other than the Lord Vittalla!! Oh!! I can’t describe how happy I felt!
Yes, one can call it a coincidence…. but I know it is much more than a simple coincidence. This is how it has been ever since grace has dawned in the form of Master. Truly as so many times I have experienced, desires get fulfilled even before they are expressed. So what If I couldn’t make it to the temple town this time round, the master made sure that I get the Darshan somehow!!
As Guruji says “God is not an object of the senses – God is the feeling of feelings, the presence of presence… The presence is a feeling – it has to be felt by the heart.”
For me, The Presence is irrefutable!! Just bathing in it!!
And it is pure Bliss!!!