Sunday, 7 August 2016

Non-vegetarian and spiritual quest

Please do not read these great texts in the blogs or the site if you are addicted to non-veg food.
It is an insult thrown at the authors of these books.
Have reverence and respect to these great Rishis by maintaining purity while you venture into the study of these texts.
And do not communicate with me also, if you are a meat-addict.

A person who eats another species of his own planet is surely not an evolved person and is still in the level of an animal only; though outwardly has the appearance of a human.

Can't the meat-eater feel the pain of the creature that is presented to him as cut pieces in a plate?
Would he eat his own child like that?
Will not the (unheard) painful screams of the killed creature ruin his brain and make him devolve to an animal once again?

Is the palate pleasure so important to neglect the pain of another living being?

Which saint does not talk about not killing animals for food or pleasure?
TiruValluvar who has mentioned several times in his text about avoidance of meat will be in a shock if he sees that his statue gets honored; but his words get ignored, for his land now is filled mostly with meat eaters only. The very student who recites his Kural verses and wins a trophy might indulge in meat eating after the function to celebrate his victory.
What a mockery of a great saint!

Even if you are a vegetarian, control the tongue.
Taste is not inside the object you eat; but the brain alone translates some signals as taste.
Do not fall for the tricks of the brain.
I have seen Ashrams, where food-eating (a very huge meal with various kinds of dishes) is considered as a part of the Saadhanaa.
The excuse given is that the body is a tool for the Saadhanaa and has to be maintained with proper food.
Devotees keep pouring offerings of fruits and groceries and the Ashramites do well the Saadhanaa of food-consuming. Most of them end up in kidney failures and other ailments because of the reckless consumption of food.

I remember a day in my Paarivraajaka life, where in the North India, I requested food at a renowned Ashram (they were all having food); and I was shown the door.
This is the Saadhanaa that goes on in all these Ashrams; the regular consumption of food as a cult ceremony!
Like Shankara says- UdaraNimittam BahuKrtaVeshaH -many are the disguises donned to feed the belly (rather the tongue).


                                 Live simple; eat less if you want to rise in knowledge.


My favorite book JnaanaVaasishtam

JnaanaVaasishtam is not a religious text.
It is completely against religion, deity worship and fanatic asceticism.
It also does not encourage HathaYoga.
Praanaayamaa mentioned in this text is actually a process of self-realization and is not anything to do with Praana.
It discourages also trance states and hourly sessions of meditation as a religious practice.
The text denies the existence of a super divinity as a creator of all worlds.
The text denies the existence of destiny and divinity also as the controller of the human lives.

The text is filled with many stories on space-time dilation, and other highly abstract concepts.
Liberation according to this text is just the understanding the truth of it all.
It needs purity of heart, and the courage to throw away idiotic beliefs to study this great text.
It is a slow training of the brain to think rationally.
It presents no philosophy, no theory, no cult, but trains the mind to think abstract.
By this thinking process, step by step, slowly the Knowledge will dawn by itself like the sunrise in the darkness.
Vasishta promises that he will make the world vanish as it is by a mere thinking process (Vichaara).
You can trust him at least.

I have made an effort to study once fully the entire text; absorbed its gist and again am redoing the translations process with the whole of Vaasishtam reflecting in every verse.

Vaasishtam sometimes is composed like an Upanishad also, with concealed meaning in its words.
I have taken much effort to bring out clearly the hidden meaning of each and every verse

It may take a long time for you to read it to the end; but it is worth every minute of your hard study, since the end is a state of SthitaPrajnatva (stabilized intellect), making you rise to the level of a Rama and Krishna, the most perfect men ever born on this earth.
A half an hour daily without miss is enough; no other meditation or ascetic practice is needed.
The little effort will lead to a greater gain; of freedom from the brain-clutches.

What do I get by translating it hour by hour each day and each night?
I almost stay in the absorption level of a complete non-existence of the entire world; and the bliss of silence in that state is unparalleled.
Whether anyone has really the time or patience to read through the entire text (very huge one at that), I do not know. Like a seed which grows to its completion till the end, not bothering about anything else; I am also engaged in this translation work as my own penance on this earth that needs to be completed.
This is my time pass!

Why I avoid meeting anyone in person?

There has been many email requests to meet me in person; and I have always discouraged such personal meet ups. The reason is - there is no benefit that awaits me or the visitor by such a meet.

First thing is I may not suit the expectation of a visitor who arrives to see a saint as imagined by him or her. It will be a great disappointment for him or her to see me living an ordinary life like all others.
The house does not stink of Agarbattis or stand silent like a dead meditation hall.
No statues and photos of gods and saints adorn the walls.

And I fail as a saint too.
I cannot pass on spiritual vibes like what many expect from a Himalayan resident.
I cannot offer Moksha at a touch.
I cannot float in the air.
I cannot bring out statues from my mouth.
I cannot produce ashes from my hands.
I cannot ooze out motherliness and hug all like children.
I cannot predict the future.
I cannot travel in astral bodies.
I do not carry a halo around my head.
I cannot change your future also.
No merits also will be there for you by such a meet up.
Service to a saint?
I have a body-tool which can climb a mountain even now if willed; so I cannot be served in any manner.
Offerings?
I never accept food or material gifts from anyone.
I do not want to be offered salutations also.

And what can I talk?
My mind is always absorbed in some Knowledge thoughts or is completely silent in some unique bliss which only I am aware of.
I never think of this inert covering of the body as myself; and I witness even those actions of the body as another person's only. (Though most of the time, I do not have to be a witness to its actions also: it can do its actions by itself also.)

To address a person who converses only with this idiot log called body is very very difficult. And I am utterly incapable of worldly talks.
I never care for any one's appearance, position, family, their local life story etc etc.
I care not for this body's story also.
So what to converse with anyone?
What more can I convey than a Vasishta or Shankara who present their ideas through their works?

And why anyone should visit anyone and waste their time and energy?
For a visitor it may be a time pass; but for me it is the wastage of precious time!
Unless a person has thoroughly studied the Brhad YogaVaasishta and grasped its concepts, he or she cannot converse with me at all; for I always stay in the Knowledge level of a Vasishta or a Vaalmiki.
Even if I manage to utter even a few ordinary words, it will be made up only; for I stay silent most of the time; and to utter a sound through this mouth also is very strenuous.

The brain has so much data of so many books and analyzed conclusions, that it will very difficult to descend down and converse with any one in the ordinary level: and I sincerely apologize for not allowing anyone to meet with me.

What my thoughts and ideas are will be published in this blog time and again; and that is all you will have access to.

I myself do not know how this inert body thing looks like (I never look into mirrors); and have no idea even of its age or looks; why should anyone else imagine a person in this body and talk to it?

I have no name you can address me as (NarayanaLakshmi, Tejasvini are all just some sounds that refer to this form, like a tree or a rock is referred to by such sounds).

So whom can you meet up with- a formless, nameless empty entity?
And I see all as nameless formless emptiness only!
Who can talk with whom?



Is there a God? No!

I have based my views here on the Vaalmiki's Vaasishtam text and some few concepts of Physics and Brain science I have managed to grasp, and also by the personal realization of these truths.

What is a God?
God is a general term for which no one has any proper definition. The word God itself is not a word from our Vedas and Scriptures, but is derived from the word Khudaa.
Upanishads clearly mention that a superpower is a concept of a human mind only.
Vasishta denies completely the idea of God or destiny as any super power that can guide a man in his struggles through life. Rather he stresses more on sincere effort and steadfastness accompanied by reason as the only divine-forms that help a man out of any situation.

What about Umaa, Shiva, Naaraayana, Kumara, Ganesha and other higher world residents? Are they real or not? Do they exist really?
If you are a resident of this planet and believe that you exist, why not these characters exist as real in any other planet or dimension?
These are referred to in the scriptures not as Gods but as Devas, the people with shining bodies.
They may very well be more learned and advanced in Science and technology than us and might have created this very planet as a virtual Reality experiment.
We cannot know of them from out limited level of intelligence.
Every Deva is as real as you or me; and is an individual with his or her own life-story, as described in the Puraanas.

Can any one see these Devas?
How can this brain here that is wired to see only the images here, able to capture the forms of those shining beings? You can only imagine them; but never have visions of them in your brain.
It is like a fish which lives in a two-dimensional world trying to understand or see a man who lives in a three dimensional world.
An ant can never see you or understand you; so also a human here in this dimension can not see them or understand them also.

Is it then useless to worship these Gods in temples?
That is what Sage Vasishta says; even Shiva gives a big lecture on how worshiping gods as super powers is a waste of time (in JnaanaVaasishtam text).
Respect them; admire them; and follow their instructions which reach us through the medium of many saints and thinkers; but do not have the incorrect supposition that they have no other business but to attend you meaningless imagined life problems.

Is the life problems we face not real?
It is real only in some relative way only; mostly because ninety percent of the life problems are self-created due to lack of learning, improper food habits, unhealthy life-style, imagined glorification of oneself and others and what not.

If god is not worshipped will we be incurring sin?
If any super being is there as you imagine, he would be too happy that you are given to rational outlook and are evolving in life.
A god concept is nothing but the human brain wired to accept and take support from a stronger person and live in submission to that person; like active submissive to an alpha male in the ape-clan. After all the humans here are slightly evolved forms of apes only; referred to as deluxe apes by the renowned Physicist Carl Sagan in his book on Evolution.
Only a person who can think rationally and stand on his own feet is the more evolved of the species; than a devotee of a non-existent god.

Why then people worship gods and feel gratified?
It is the easiest way to pass time and impress others about one's goodness.
Thinking is always an act of drudgery and is avoided by all as a sinful .
Scientific thinking itself is considered as a demonic act that offends the so-called God.
A thinker is usually burnt alive or poisoned or murdered, if he talks sense.This is a commonly observed fact of this planet.

What about people who have had visions and trances?
Trance is nothing but some chemical excess in the brain. How can it be a God-experience?
Visions are also brain-hallucinations.
How can we see the forms of another dimension in these brains evolved to see only through five senses?

Is worshiping the form a form of foolishness?
Every Scripture (Upanishad based) and every true Knower of this planet (like Ramana, and Shankara) has time and again advised the student to not believe in forms, as they are brain created images only.
The worst offense offered to them by their students is worshiping their photos and discarding their true instructions. Worshiping a saint's form is equal to throwing stones at those noble ones; and worshiping the forms of un-known gods is nothing but the extremity of foolishness.

What is a form?
The form you see of any person is an evolved state of vision which decodes images in three dimensional measures. This too depends on the healthy state of the brain and the organs.
Everyone does not see the same way; it all depends on the individual brain-capacity.
A body is just a genetically formed survival machine.
A body is an inert tree that moves and makes measured sounds through mouth; that is all.
The brains here are hardwired to see these images only.
How can these brain created images belong to a true Knower like Shankara or Ramana?
They would have lived without the sense of the body as empty conscious points only; and instead of reaching their levels of existence as formless-points of intelligence, devotees hold on to the images and wish for Moksha as a direct gift packet thrown at them from those inert images!
This is nothing but the stagnant state of the brain that is stuck to the senseless religion which blocks the very thinking capacity of the form-adherent.

Finally-
Devas are there in their world somewhere in some universe.
Whether they exist or not exist is not the main problem that we have to face.
You exist as a evolved homosapien here and are stuck to some imagined life-story here.
Believing in an imagined god or not believing in a god (as a fashion) is not the solution.
Whatever you are, whoever you are, practice analyzing everything through reason and evolve the brain to transcend the form based relative reality named the perceived world.
See beyond the sense-created pictures of the world.
Look beyond the mirage of the world,
Think; think; think and gather up knowledge as much as possible, without wasting time in doll-worships and brainless actions.
The world with its forms will vanish off to reveal the truth beyond; and that is the real god-experience.

Seek that God who is no god but stays as the silence within you as your very existence.

AUM









Books by Narayanalakshmi

BOOKS BY NARAYANALAKSHMI

Her main works are –
Brhad YogaVaasishta of Vaalmiki,
Simplified Yogavaasishta philosophy in english,
VaasishtaGeetaMaalikaa - a compilation of BrhadYogaVaasishta verses, for easy reading,
Some beautiful works of Shankara,
UpadeshaSaahasri, VaakyaVritti of Shankara,
AshtaaVakraGeeta,
PanchaTatntram,
KathaasaritSaagara, the treasure of stories,
BhartrhariTriShatakas,
Bhagavadgeeta simplified to modern thinking,  
ShivaPurnaanam (a combined presentation of Vishnu Purana, ShivaPurana and DeviBhagavatam),
Stories of Vikramaaditya and Vetaala,
Kaadambaree of BaanaBhatta, and PulinaKaadambari,
Tirukkural of TiruValluvar,
Bharati Upanishad (selected Vedantic works of MahaaKavi Bhaaratiyaar),
Life and selected Vachanas of AkaMahaaDevi, the greatest woman saint born ever,
Stories from Vaasishta Ramayanam and TripuraaRahasyam,
Coded meanings of selected Upanishad texts,
A beautiful allegorical Sanskrit drama-work discussing various cults named Prabodhachandrodaya by Shri KrishnaMishra Yati,
Subtle translation of MantraPushpam and Gaayatri Mantram,
Rare books like BhagavadGita of Vaalmiki, ShivaGeeta, and also Ramana’s Upadeshasaaram….

Many more books will be translated in the future also for the benefit of the seekers of truth.

BLOGS:

All books are published in various blogs for the convenience of the reader.


PDF (kindle friendly) FORMS OF ALL THESE BOOKS ARE AVAILABLE FOR FREE  DOWNLOAD AT


titled ‘call of the mountain

THE TREASURE-STORE OF BHAARATA

These books are freely available for all seekers of the True Knowledge.
These books are the real wealth of Bhaarata, which light up the lamp of Knowledge in all the minds.
Please do not steal or rewrite or use them for any material benefit.
These blogs are made for the benefit of the seekers of higher level of Knowledge, as guidance offered by Rishis and ascetics of the yore.
Maintain the sanctity of the same.
Aum

About Narayanalakshmi and her early life

A BRIEF LIFE-STORY OF NARAYANALAKSHMI


Narayanalakshmi also known by the name of Tejaswini in her ascetic life, lived in the solitude of Himalayan Mountains most of her life, alone in a cottage, helped by a few of her young followers, engaged in the study and contemplation of Upanishads and many other valuable texts of the yore. She renounced the family and friends when she was in her thirties. Actually her aim was to find the truth about the existence of a god; but her penance in the white hills bestowed upon her the knowledge which was beyond the god-level also. Since Knowledge was her only aim in life, she returned to the civilized world and mastered the concepts of Science (Physics) also as a part of her knowledge-penance. Stabilized in her Knowledge penance, she resides now at Bangalore, India, maintaining her vow of solitude, supported by her biological sons Naren (works at Kasiga School Dehradun), Vivek (works as a programmer at Nimbix.Inc) and Meera Baindur (has taken the teaching profession in 
Karnataka).

Early life of Narayanalakshmi:
Lakshmi’s spiritual quest started at the age of eleven itself and she was an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna. By the age of sixteen, she had completed the studies of all the spiritual books connected to Ramana, RamaKrishnna, Vivekananda, Shankara and the Upanishads also. With an unsatiated hunger for knowledge, she has gone through all the spiritual books written in Tamil and Kannada also. There was nothing left out as unstudied. All the spiritual data was there in her mind as both Dvaita and Advaita realization.
Later forced to marry and beget children, she went through a life of darkness waiting for the dawn of freedom.  She finished her Master’s degree in philosophy and Sanskrit even when she was stuck with continuous family duties.
Her internal stress of living through a family life as against her desire for a Sannyasin’s life pushed her into a severe asthmatic condition. Undaunted by the fatal disease that was consuming her life slowly, she engaged herself in the research about the afterlife also. More books were consumed and more data was added to her brain.
Nothing was left to study anymore.
Some duties concerning the welfare of her children made her keep the body alive.
She was stabilized as a witness state of whatever the life presented her with.
She just waited for the freedom, the death the body would offer some day, though she had crossed over the death and birth states by her knowledge quest.
And one sudden day, the shackles were broken and she walked towards her loved white mountains.
Her body was instantly cured of all diseases and infirmities.

White Mountains:
After an arduous journey of two to three weeks through the unknown hill terrain, they reached the banks of River Taamasi (Tons) which was situated under a hill named Kalaap.
Since the Kalaap Mountain had a cave where the last of solar and lunar dynasty kings performed penance for the birth of Kalki (tenth incarnation of Vishnu), Lakshmi lived in a small cottage made of stones at the river bank, and named it as Kalki Ashram.
She and her children lived a simple life of Rishis on the river bank for many years, cut off from civilization, before returning to the city life.
Coming back to the civilized world long forgotten, she absorbed the Physics concepts and and brain theories through books authored by Michio Kaku, Hofstadter, Dennett, Ramachandran, Dawkins and many other renowned physicists.
At present, wording her knowledge-essence into books, Lakshmi has translated many Sanskrit books of the yore; and is continuing to translate many rare Sanskrit books.


CONTACT AT

narayanalakshmi256@gmail.com


Sunday, 5 August 2012

Call of the White Mountains - Our life in Himalayas


CALL OF THE WHITE MOUNTAINS

OUR LIFE IN HIMALAYAS

by

NarayanaLakshmi
 

INTRODUCTION


In the nineties, a forty year old lady accompanied by a few youngsters left Bangalore (India) and went to the White Mountains (Himalayas) and lived there alone in a cottage for about ten years or so. Her quest was superficially religious; yet she attained the height of knowledge there. 
Her name is NarayanaLakshmi.  
Six teenagers accompanied her. Three of them returned to their homes, unable to bear the hardships of the mountains.
Meera, Naren and Vivek stayed back.
Meera at present is a Professor of Philosophy and Humanities in Manipal University (Karnataka).
Naren is now the Departmental head of Design technology in the Kasiga International School at Dehradun.
Vivek is a freelance software engineer staying at Bangalore.

Narayanalakshmi is busy now in translating all the ancient Sanskrit texts of the yore for the benefit of the public and stays at Bangalore.



 LIFE IN THE WILDERNESS OF WHITE MOUNTAINS

It was not an easy life in the wilderness to stay cut off from civilization for so many years.

We had to face countless physical discomforts, survival struggles, opposition from natives, life-threats, humiliations, dangers from the wild animals, dangers inbuilt in mountains, lack of finances, absence of city-facilities, and what not.

It was a continuous struggle to survive in the wild; and yet what we got out of the Mountains, is indeed worth all the trouble we had to go through.

At present, the area we lived as 'Dhawla' on the River bank is unapproachable. 
The bridge we used to cross the wild river Tons, was destroyed in the floods, as soon as we left that place. Only some broken walls without any roof stand there as a memory of the wondrous life we had in the Mountains.

Kalaap, the village on top of a hill, above 'Dhawla' is now a trekking attraction to many.

Since I cannot write anything about any of my unique spiritual experiences, I have given a brief account only of what the kids had to undergo in the wilderness of the Mountains.


Kalaap is now a land open for trekkers. You can have a glimpse of the beautiful mountain and the ruins of our tiny hut in this article published in The OUTDOOR Journal.

http://www.outdoorjournal.in/focus-2/kalap-following-mountain-goat-indias-himalaya/


OUR LIFE IN THE LAP OF THE SNOW MOUNTAINS

Each day was an episode of some divine experience.
Each day was a day of Knowledge.
Many extraordinary events happened that can't be written in human language.
I avoid all that and will write only the 'mountain-life' experiences we went through there.

Huge Mountains on all sides.
A violent River as water source.
Wood as fuel.
No bathrooms; no toilets.
Walking as the transport.
Unpredictable weather conditions.
Bus-stop to be reached after an hour's walk up a hill, filled with forest trees.
Nearest town was Purola where some ration could be brought.
A day's journey in the bus would get us to Dehradun.
No vegetables. No fruits.
Rice could be brought in the dead-end village we had seen at the end of our journey.
No milk.(The natives raised cows (Dangar) not for milk but for the dung to be used as fertilizers.

We stayed some nine years there in that mountain forest.
We had later built a concrete cottage.
Naren had managed to fix a generator on the rock next to the River and made the water come to the Ashram through pipes. (He was a genius)
We had acquired a Jersy cow for milk.
We had a German shepherd as our sixth member of the family.
Later a tiny kitten joined us. We named it Jhaansi to honor the courageous queen. It was fearless like her.
Dog and cat never fought but were close friends.
The cow was fat and huge and ate like a non-stop machine.
We called it Munchi-Poo (the voracious eater). It gave lots of milk and acted always like a spoilt brat.

MANY UNIQUE EXPERIENCES OF THE MOUNTAIN LIFE

So many events - a few for example.

One day when Meera had taken the cow for a walk, it ran madly pulling her along with it.
As I stood watching them both from the Ashram in the higher land, they both just disappeared suddenly.
One second they both were seen at the end of the land and next moment, they had vanished.
I knew that below that land, there was only a deep trench down to the river flowing violently below.
I ran to see whether they had been taken away by the flood waters.
Down below there was a fat single tree growing next to the River, in a horizontal way. The cow was resting on its trunk. Meera was resting on the cow. I shouted at her to climb up. She refused. Either both of them will come up or she will stay there guarding the cow from mountain leopards and wolves.
There was no path for the cow to move even.
The villagers arrived one by one.
They saw the cow stuck down below the valley.
They quietly got their digging materials.
After two  to three hours of digging, they had made a path up to the cow.
The cow which fell at noon time was back at home by night eight O clock.
The villagers refused the money we offered.
Our eyes were moist.

***

One day Jyoti's sister Divya visited us. She was from Bangalore. She wanted to stay with us for a few days.
All the kids went to the river to take bath. The city-dweller also went. I stayed back.
The newcomer sat on a rock on the River. The rock was inside the River close to the bank; but the River below was very violent.
She bent down to pick up a mug and was floating in the middle of the river the next moment.
Meera who is always alert had only one thought- save her; and she just walked through the water (she does not know how she did it) and grabbed the hair of that girl who was going away along with the River. Holding on to a rock with the other hand, she kept pulling the unconscious girl towards her. Slowly with others helping, the girl was brought back.
The girl had taken a second birth!

***

Weather in Himalayas.
In Summer the Sun rises early at 5 AM ; is hot by nine; stays throughout hot and sets at 8.30 PM.
Days are long; very long. You  can do lot of work.


In Winter Sun shines like a blotch on the sky and sets by 3 PM.
The days are short; very short. And the weather is cold; cold ; cold.
Moving itself will make you shiver; that much cold.
No bathing also. Even hot water will make you shiver.
Fire has to be burning always.
The whole landscape will be white and shine brightly at night. 
No green thing can be seen.
Everything will be covered by snow; plants, trees, paths, roofs; everything. 
For any urgent need of water you just pick a little snow from a clean place and heat it. That is all.

It will all begin peacefully like a continuous steady drizzle of never-ending rain and suddenly the snow will start pouring from the heavens; and in no time, the whole landscape will turn white and bright.
Buses will stop plying. The world would be dead as it were.

For survival you have to cut a lot of wood and keep in the autumn season itself to last for next six months.
And what will be the winter-day like?
Get up; have tea; sit before the fire; cook one meal and it is already night-time; so cuddle inside the Razaai Kambal.
Imagine stars shining at 3  in the afternoon.
Well, that is the charm of  Himalayas.

***

We were living like poor recluses, surviving on the charity of our well wishers. Of course we lived with Gods but lived like Rishis depending on only nature.
The elder son had to always go every month to Purola for ration. The day he had planned to go, it snowed heavily. Buses were cancelled.
The boy had no shoes to wear. Even clothes were old and torn.
Undaunted he took some sack cloth; tied his feet to them with ropes; walked with a native friend of his up to Purola and got the rice for us. (A gem of a boy!)

***


Another winter.
Our larder was empty.
No rice; no dal (grain).
Nothing but faith in the super powers.

We sat in front of the fire wondering what to do.
Then we saw lights on the mountain which joined the bus route.
After some time the lights came near us and we saw military soldiers with their leaders coming towards our Ashram.
The major and colonel stayed with us for a few minutes and inquired about us. They were surprised that we stayed alone there without even the certainty of the next day's food.
They went off to climb the other mountain.
It was their military exercise to climb up and down the mountains at night in utter darkness.
Next morning they came down.
Took the kids along with them to show their military camp.
In the afternoon, I saw soldiers carrying sacks and bags coming towards our Ashram.
Soon our house was filled with Rice, dal, tea, tinned goods, milk powder,sugar and what not.
They daily visited us and took care of us and became close friends.
Who said we suffered in the Himalayas?

***

Since there were no vegetables to eat except the mustard leaf, we decided to grow vegetables ourselves.
We brought a few seed packets and managed to dig the weedy soil and scattered the tiny seeds.
Little did we know of the power of Himalayan soil.
Very soon we had a profuse crop.
And even plucking vegetables became a daily chore. The crop was overflowing.
French beans yield was some two kilos a day (just a tiny patch of soil); small plants but would be covered with long fresh beans all over. No escape from work and you have to pluck it all daily.
Lady's finger plant grew some seven feet tall and the fruit would be tender and long. You have to raise your hand high, bend the plant and pluck the veg.
Tomato plants would be leafy and bushy giving out a beautiful fragrance; but they too would produce two to three kilos per day.
We tried potatoes. We learnt how we had to dig deep with our fingers inside the soil to catch the round balls hidden in the muddy treasure chest.
We tried ground nuts and learnt the lesson of how rats tunnel under the ground and make the nuts vanish.
All the hard work and the nuts would be gone!
Then we had corn plants and we learnt to chase the monkeys.
Then there were Chullu (apricot) trees, Aadu trees (jungle pears), acrot (walnut trees). We even planted a few apple trees.

Naren and Vivek would gather jungle fruits and bring them home when they went on the wood-cutting spree.
The Dalchini (cinnamon) leaves they brought would add a beautiful flavor for the tea.
Meeraa was a great enthusiast of gardening and decided to grow some flowers.
Dalhias would bloom like huge lotuses. Sunflowers would grow tall and erect always looking at the Sun wherever he went.
From the road above, our river-bank garden would look beautiful like the valley of flowers.
Ah I forgot - we grew red pumpkins also; but never relished its sweet taste; gave all those giant balls for our dear Munchipoo (cow).
Then there were cucumbers, the cherished fruit of the natives. They always liked to eat the yield of the neighbours' field than their own.
The cucumbers would be fat and grow some one foot long. For the native it served the purpose of a full meal. The creeper would cover the roof beautifully and cucumbers would hang like yellow bulbs all over. Tiny humming birds would hover around delighting our eyes.
We even grew coriander plants. After all the trouble for months we got some two kilos of seed. (not worth the trouble if you get it in  a shop for a few rupees).

***

And there were snakes!
Snakes inside the stone walls, under the stone of the compound walls, on the logs which supported the roof; in the racks, in the grass; almost everywhere.
Jhaansi (the tiny cat)would catch tiny snakes in her tiny mouth and play with them till we forcibly saved each from the other.
Meera would catch them fearlessly with some hooks and throw them into the River.

***

Vivek was eleven years old when he entered the forest and lived there happily till his eighteenth year enjoying the free life of adventure and learning.
The kids did not waste their time in any way.
They mastered Upanishads, literature, science, computer programming, all by themselves. There was no tutor except their own thirst for knowledge.
While Naren buried himself in reading all magazines of Popular Science, Vivek spent all his nights in meddling with the computer.
Vivek became an expert in milking the cow. He and the cow developed a unique relationship and he liked to loll on its fat belly and read books.
Naren was always ready for all hard tasks. He never understood the meaning of  the words 'fear' and 'not possible'.
He would carry huge flat stones on his back and bring them from the opposite bank of the river. He made a beautiful courtyard for our stone house. 
He never was tired of collecting wood for our fuel. He never gave up fighting with the petromax lamps which always refused to burn with some excuse or other. 
(He later made all the doors of our concrete cottage; cemented the tiles of the bathroom; fixed taps and showers in the bathroom.) He never was a person who hesitated to soil his hands.
The two brothers were admired as great heroes in that village.
Imitating them, the village kids also started wearing city type of caps.
The river lost its murderous name and all the kids of the village played in the river to their heart's content following their two leaders.


***
And the natives?
We were not shooting a documentary of the village people with a melodious background music describing their innocent lives. But we were there for real.
And it took a long time for us to understand that they were still not evolved enough to understand the ethics of city people.
When they first saw me and the grown up girls and boys following me, they thought that I had these kids out of many husbands (as they do). One eighty year old native lady even approached me in a friendly manner to ask me how much would I ask for Meera ( to marry off of course). I had to lift her with the end of her coat bodily and throw her out.
And these people stole.
Stealing is a wrong word.
Any object seen was theirs.
On the first day, when we were bathing in the river, they took away the spectacles of Naren even, not knowing that it was a powered lens. (poor boy!)
I still wonder how the two boys managed their toilets and other problems.
I never heard them complaining; nor did they ever wished to go back to the city and join the gene-relatives.
I have seen the kids only as enjoying every moment of their forest life.
Of course there were incidents where Vivek would come back with a bleeding hand (the result of some incorrect axe handling), where Naren chased a huge bull (which we had purchased to mate with our cow) all round the field and so on. 
And we had to cut heaps and heaps of grass for our eating machine (Munchipoo). Even I learnt to handle the grass cutter.

And the natives except a few were very hostile to us.
They thought that we would cheat them and swallow up all their lands.
They put false cases on us in the court.
There was no police. There only a Phatwaari ( local police); and a court at Purola. Anybody could sue anybody with any complaint. The court was a good pastime of the natives; and we were no exception.
Anyhow slowly the hostility disappeared and they learnt to bear with us.

***
One wandering monk came to our Ashram. He casually asked me to go with him and sit in a cave in some Mountain to make an earning. The kids with all respect due, escorted him to the mountain-top bus stop and bid good bye to him.

***

The Villagers did not like a woman staying there with kids, even if it was for a religious cause. They used to taunt Naren for deserting his father and living with the mother.
When Naren went to Purola to buy ration, he had to draw money from the local bank. That clerk used to simply delay the process and Naren had to miss the bus many times.
We fought against this. We wrote a long letter to the Main bank of Dehradun and explained our problem.
Within a week our Ashram was visited by the clerk and the Purola bank manager. They begged us to withdraw the complaint or that fellow would lose the job. We obliged.
Naren did not have trouble any more.

***

We had made friends with a foreign recluse lady in a nearby town. She was known as German Maataaji and lived alone with a servant. She bred German shepherds and made an income by selling them.
She was a disciple of renowned modern saint of north India. After his demise she underwent a lot of harassment from the next heir of the Ashram; ran from there to live alone in a village of Himalayas.

***

Yes. there were some tragic events too.
Jhaansi (cat) left us when we rebuilt the Ashram with cement.
The dear dog (Poppy) was devoured by a 'Bhageera' (mountain leopard.)

 ***

When we first entered the white mountains, all the places where we had trekked were stuck by a huge earthquake and many villages we had come through were destroyed.

( I remember the day of the earth quake.)
All the seven of us were sitting in a dilapidated 'Chaan' (hut-structure on wooden pillars) on the first floor.
Suddenly the hut started shaking violently.
We thought that maybe a mountain bear was attacking us.
One boy lit some grass and threw it out to scare the bear away.
The shaking stopped.
Later the villagers told us that an earthquake had hit.

After we left our place and came off to city, the very next monsoon the whole of that mountain area was flooded ; the bridge was destroyed and the entire landscape of the Ashram has changed.
The River flows now where the Ashram was.

***

The kids had no certificates or educational qualifications when they returned to the city.
The super powers kept their promise.
They all have now very good jobs to their satisfaction.
They never regret their lives back in those forests.
The experiences and knowledge have made all three of them the best of humans.

Roofs flew; house was covered in flooding mountain waters; a calf went off in the river; we lived a life of poverty and hardship.
Even now we are not accepted fully by the relatives after coming back.
Yet there is the sweet memory of our first day in the Himalayas.
Mimmer Singh, an eight year old boy in tattered pants, torn shirt and a dirty cap came to see us.
Seeing that we had no land (Zameen) or cow (Dangar), he put his hands inside his torn pant pocket; drew out a handful of red rice and offered us to munch, feeling sorry for us.


That is our Himalayas.
That is our Bhaarat.
AUM.