It's Trinidad Hanuman’s blessings!
Jai Guru Datta
Mukta Balroop is a simple seeker of truth and music lover. He is a follower of Pujya Sri Ganapathy Sachchidananda Swamiji -who is his Sadguru and favourite musician. He feels that "Trinidad Hanuman" has definitely given him courage in his own journey, and HE will help anyone who has faith and devotion, who reaches out to HIM for help.
Ever since I could remember, I have loved and tried to follow my Sadguru , sometimes failing for one reason or another—peer pressure, my own weaknesses, among them! I am the last in a family of three boys, who had been following our Sadguru for a few years before I was born.
Below are two recent experiences which I would like to share. Both experiences are linked in that they deal with my studies for my Master’s course abroad.
The first is with Sri Swamiji and myself. The second, is with Trinidad Hanuman. Swamiji has blessed this Land with a miraculous Hanuman temple - with a Karyasiddhi 85ft. Hanuman standing regally above the smaller Hanuman Murti and Temple. This form of Hanuman is the wish- fulfilling Hanuman, who was placed here to fulfil wishes especially of devotees with difficulties of any kind. It is the largest of its kind in the Western hemisphere. I will refer to this form of Hanuman, in this attempt to express my fond gratitude, as “Trinidad Hanuman”.
In 2013, I had developed an interest in Media Law coming out of a Mooting Competition in Law School. After finishing my law studies in 2014, I worked for a couple of years and then I thought about furthering my studies in this area of Law. However, when I did some research on costs and universities I quickly realized that doing a Masters was beyond me, because of the high costs involved.
Swamiji visited Trinidad in 2016 for consecration of the idols of Sri Ram Parivar & Satyanarayana Swamy, the new temples built on either side of the 85 feet tall Hanuman Murti and to do special worship of all temples of the Ashrama. The Ashrama was abuzz with incredible energy, positivity and uplifting vibrations.
At one point during that visit, I was blessed to have a moment alone with Swamiji and so conveyed my thoughts regarding the Masters and sought His approval and blessing. Significantly, I explained to Swamiji about the high costs of the Masters and that I would be applying for a scholarship from the UK funded programme in the hope of obtaining funding. In my mind I knew that if Swamiji did not approve or bless my proposed course of study, I would not have gone ahead with it.
Swamiji listened intently as I explained using a mixture of baby Telugu and English. At the end, He smiled reassuringly, nodded and gave His blessing to proceed: “Yes, go ahead. I bless.” Because of this, I felt more positive, and I decided for sure to do the application.
In October of that year 2016, I did the required application for the scholarship. It was a long, rigorous application for a very competitive programme. Usually, 3-5 Trinidadians may be awarded the scholarship. I completed and submitted the required essays and continued to keep praying. The days couldn’t pass fast enough and I kept checking daily for e-mail updates and further information and instructions from the scholarship organization. I continued to pray and speak mentally with Swamiji about the process. Then, fast forward to February 2017, I was thrilled to learn that I was shortlisted for the interview round of the selection process. It was a major step toward the goal!
Surrender actions to Sadguru
I prepared anxiously for the interview, utilizing the support of some close friends as well. The interview day arrived and I continued to keep envisioning being successful as I had Swamiji’s blessings and kept praying to Trinidad Hanuman and speaking internally with Swamiji. I surrendered the entire event to Him. I knew that it would only happen if He wanted it to happen. The long interview with the panel, from my perspective, went reasonably ok – with one or two unexpected questions thrown at me, but somehow I managed to answer. On looking back, later, I was certain that Swamiji had prompted those answers in my mind. But just like any exam, I feared the worst as I have a tendency to expect the worst so as to not be overly disappointed.
In June of 2017, after many periods of uncertainty and anxiety in waiting coupled with continuous praying, I opened an e-mail from the scholarship organisation. Words cannot express the joy I felt when I read that I was conditionally awarded the scholarship! I was ecstatic and profusely expressed my gratitude to Swamiji - for I knew it was only by His Compassionate Grace. I saw Him in my mind, smiling at me and I felt like crying, overcome with thankful emotion. His comforting smile had said it all! Perhaps it was all of the excitement but I could not believe how blessed I was and felt grateful for whatever good karma had led me to this point. The award of the scholarship was subsequently confirmed in July once I satisfied certain conditions. I was more convinced that winning the scholarship had to be through Swamiji’s Grace because due to budget constraints caused by the economy, the main sponsor that partnered with the scholarship body could only fund one person - who happened to be me - the sole Trinidadian! How blessed- a career dream came to reality!
I was extremely humbled and I thanked Swamiji mentally as well as physically through electronic communications.
Purna Phala Deeksha
In August of 2017, in anticipation of a tough year of study abroad, I did a Purna phala Deeksha for Trinidad Hanuman. The process of following this "Purna phala deeksha" according to Sri Swamiji’s instructions here, includes Sankalpa holding a dry coconut with a number from the temple, in front of the small Sri Karya Siddhi Hanuman and pray to Hanumanji for help with whatever problem you have, or with fulfiling your desire if He deems it fit to do so. Then you do at least 5 Pradakshinas or 11 or 16 around Hanuman praying, or chanting Hanuman Mantra. I followed the instructions and tied the coconut with its outer shell (Purna Phala) at the temple. I left ‘my coconut’ on the fence for 16 days, and I came everyday , regardless of the rain, sun or traffic, to pray to Trinidad Hanuman and to do pradakshina (which is circumnavigation of the huge imposing figure of Hanuman). I chanted the prescribed mantra as per Swamiji’s instructions when doing the pradakshina: “Twamasmin Kaarya Niryoge, Pramaanam Hari sattama, Hanuman Yatna Maasthaaya , Dukha Kshaya Karo Bhava”. Swamiji had previously explained to devotees, "This mantra is specially to help with problems.” It means "O Lord Hanuman, please make efforts to remove my sadness, affictions and difficulties, and please give me courage to fulfil my desire/task. " I did the pradakshina with utmost faith in Trinidad Hanuman. My wish when doing the Purna phala deeksha, was to successfully complete the challenging Masters and make the most of my time abroad i.e. to be successful in my academic pursuits and to continue to grow spiritually.
On the 16th day I removed the coconut, offered it to Trinidad Hanuman and took it home, and gave it to Mum to use for coconut chutney – which as a family we then enjoyed.
As expected, on the whole, living abroad was indeed a grueling time. There were several challenges, including finding suitable accommodation – as I had to move more than once. The winter period especially, with its cold, short days and rare sunshine (if at all) combined with the lack of familiar foods and faces, had me questioning different aspects about myself, mentally and emotionally – for example, whether I truly wanted to be there, and if I really even needed this Masters. However, during these tough times I would pray to Swamiji for the strength and guidance to see me through. The majority of times, I would chant the Hanuman Chalisa and do my own small sadhana in my room but I also visited and prayed at the Lakshmi Narayan temple (in Hounslow) and Iskcon Radha Krishna temple (in Soho). Both temples places brought some peace and I frequented the latter more because of the reasonably- priced vegetarian food shop that was attached to it.
Of course, I also visited Swamiji’s Dattatreya Yoga Centre which was further away. This had a calming but powerful aura that energised me! It was very comforting to see Swamiji’s pictures as well and be around Datta devotees, if even briefly!
Remembering the Purna phala deeksha I had done prior to leaving Trinidad, I believe that it is by Trinidad Hanuman’s blessings, I completed my course and graduated with a distinction. In addition, I also secured numerous opportunities through volunteering and networking. By the Divine Grace of Trinidad Hanuman and Swamiji, I even secured a job there for a short while!
Visit to Berlin for Healing Concert
One of the key highlights of that period occurred when I had the opportunity to visit Berlin in the summer of 2018, while Swamiji was there for His musical Concert for Meditation and Healing. This was a short, but highly refreshing, spiritual experience in itself and I was happy to have had that blessed opportunity. As a student, budgeting was key and I endured a long trip by bus from London to Berlin for this concert in order to minimize costs. This was not easy to do physically – it took approximately 18 hours to reach to Berlin but it was definitely, easily worth it as I had the chance to have Swamiji’s direct Darshanam in the hall there. I will never forget Swamiji’s expression of pure compassion when I approached him and He said my name. My tiredness from the long journey immediately disappeared and was replaced with some kind of warm, light feeling that reinvigorated me! I remember feeling so happy – and this feeling remained with me even as I experienced the musical Concert later. If anything, it augmented how I experienced Swamiji’s music, which was incredibly relaxing and divine.
The Berlin concert was on the 30th June 2018. A month later, I was very lucky to be once again in Swamiji’s presence – this time in London when He was returning to India having visited Trinidad. At this point in the year, I was deep in the middle of writing my final dissertation which would be in partial fulfilment of my Masters. Being in Swamiji’s presence once again, provided me with extra energy, intelligence and verve to finish it and to submit it.
Thus, overall I have no doubt, that my Purna phala deeksha was 100 percent effective for my development spiritually, mentally and materially.
I feel considerably blessed to experience the Divine Love of my Swamiji, to follow Him and to have Him guide me. I see no difference between Trinidad Hanuman and Swamiji - one and the same God to me!
These words are totally inadequate to convey His greatness, and how I feel about Him, and I beg forgiveness from Him for this. Om Namo Hanumate Namah !
Jai Guru Datta !