Like many others, I have been mesmerized by Sri Paramahansa Yogananda's Autobiography of a Yogi. In his book, Yogananda talks about the legendary spiritual master Sri Lahiri Mahasaya who had performed miracles for his devotees, and who received enlightenment from the immortal sage Babaji. Long after I finished reading this classic, I couldn't get Lahiri Mahasaya out of my mind, enchanted by his life experiences.
Later, three incidents happened in my life, or should I say "tiny miracles", which I believe to be the blessings of Lahiri Mahasaya.
I had been regularly feeding a cute stray kitten that frequented our house. One night, I forcibly opened my room door, not realizing the kitten was inside and lying near the door. It's leg got caught underneath. Screaming, it dragged it's leg away for a few centimeters and stopped. It couldn't move further and meowed piteously. My heart broke and tears welled my eyes. Hysterical, I slumped on the carpet right in front of the kitten. Closing my eyes, I sobbed inconsolably and prayed to Lahiri Mahasaya to heal the kitten being injured for no fault of its. I cried & cried for nearly five minutes. Suddenly, I heard a whoosh, like something darting away. Opening my eyes, I found the kitten missing! I found it in a dark corner staring at me with a puzzled look. What happened? How could it run? Why was it surprised? Did it see an apparition? I was left speechless.
Second incident. I was in an interview room of a billion dollar MNC. The HR personnel looked grim as he handed back my degree certificates and said, "Sorry, I cannot accept this. You can leave." I was rejected on the assumption that my genuine certificates were fake. I couldn't apply for the job until I get a letter from my university attesting my certificates to be real. That would take at least a month or much more and I was already financially down. I left the room, sad and hopeless. Walking on the road, I thought I would collapse on the pavement as I couldn't bear what happened. It felt so unfair to me. Again, with wet eyes, I prayed to Lahiri Mahasaya to lift me from my despair. A few minutes later, I received a call from a job consultant. "Congratulations, you have been selected to join IBM. You can collect your offer letter tomorrow from our office." she said. What?! I didn't apply in IBM. Anyway, my anguish disappeared in a second and I became my buoyant self again. Later, I found out that the consultancy lied. They were tricking me to visit their office and try my luck in IBM. It didn't matter. The hoax call served its purpose. A higher purpose of healing my wounded soul, when I needed it the most.
Third incident. I was unemployed yet again, and at home. I recall saying something to my dad and getting a response which I felt to be cynical. That did it. All the frustration & depression of being jobless and hearing comments from relatives lashed out immediately. In a demonic rage, I threw my mobile on the floor with all my strength. It shattered into four pieces, flying in all directions. I stormed upstairs and crashed into bed. At that moment, all I wanted to do was commit suicide. "Lahiri Mahasaya, help me. Please help me. I don't know what to do. I just want to die.", I kept repeating to myself. After a while, I mopped my face and came down resigning myself to the fate that I can never use my mobile again and miss valuable job calls. My mum had picked up the broken pieces and laid them on the table. Amazingly, I could attach them and then switched on my mobile. It worked! It just worked. I never felt more humbled in my entire life.
In the nine years I have read about this great personality, I have called upon him only three times. Times when I felt the utmost despair and powerless to do anything. And I got my answer promptly which may not be as expected (the mobile still has broken edges, a reminder of my follies) but was right anyway. The message that a faithful and sincere prayer will never be ignored and we will be helped in mysterious ways.