My darling mother passed away yesterday. She was called Aban mummy by everyone. She was more or less the universal mom. She had been a victim of paralysis and it’s terrible consequences for a very long time and finally she is pain free. She is in a much better place than she was while her beautiful body was wasting away.
Even though she must have been in horrible pain all the time, she used to come to ashram for satsang and she sat through the entire Poojas last Navaratri.
Though she went through immense pain, Gurudev gave her a royal exit.
On the morning of January 19th, she woke up, was given her bath and settled in her bed. She had her chai. Chai was very important to her .
A few years ago, when she was critical in the ICU and we all thought she would die, she asked for chai. The doctor refused saying that we don’t serve chai in the ICU. My sister told the doctor, if she dies without drinking her chai, I will kill you! The doctor allowed the chai to be given…
After having her chai, she had a bit of breakfast and then dad asked her if she would like to watch some Knowledge Video of Gurudev. She nodded. For some reason, the video wouldn’t work. So, dad asked her if she wanted to listen to the Guru Pooja being chanted by Bhanu Didi. Again, she nodded. Dad put the Pooja on and sat to meditate with her. When the Pooja was over, dad came out of meditation to see that she had stopped breathing. She died listening to that beautiful sacred chant, peacefully, while meditating!
Dinesh and I were at the ashram and we rushed home as soon as we got the news. The atmosphere was serene, quiet and light. Her face looked rested and bright. Dad had a few tears in his eyes and so did I… but it was more from sweet memories that we shared than any sort of grief. It was a very different state of mind I was in. Tears and happiness to know that finally she was out of pain and free, and gratitude for the way she left, and relief that she was not suffering any more, and a sort of a joy that she was now with Gurudev.
Many people came to pay their last respects. They all commented at how light and easy they were feeling. Bhanu didi and Anna came as well, with some flowers that Gurudev had sent for her. We took her body smelling fragrant and sweet amidst the singing of Jai Jai Radha Ramana Hari Bol out of the house to the waiting hearse.
Even in the hearse, with her body lying there, we were either meditating or talking normally. Even cracking a few jokes which I am sure she would have giggled at, if she had heard them… perhaps she did.
We reached the Parsi Tower of Silence. My sister who was in Bombay had flown down to Bangalore and came directly there. She did cry quite a bit. But by the time the beautiful farewell chants were over, she was more or less fine. Many of mummy’s dear friends from the Dadar house satsang days came there. Everyone was in Bangalore for the Teacher’s Refresher Meet happening here… All the ones she really loved happened to be in Bangalore at the time of her passing… We all sat and meditated while the chanting was being done.
Then they took her body onwards where it would be consumed by birds of prey and whatever would remain would be swept into a pit where it would be made into manure which would then be released into the grounds making them lush and green and beautiful. We come from the Earth and go back to Her.
And then it was over. The chanting, the meditation and the genuine love of the people who were there made Aban mummy’s funeral a lovely, serene, enchanting experience. There were tears and laughter as we recalled some lovely memories of her… as the sun set, we all departed from there… Lucky to have known her, loved her and felt her love. Somewhere I actually feel safe that she went on ahead, and will be there waiting for me when it’s my time to go…
I am pretty sure she is having a great time with Gurudev now, wherever she is. So I am not going to say may she rest in peace or anything like that – Mummy was never one who wanted rest or peace… She was full of love and laughter and a bit of mischief…
I am going to say may she have an absolutely fabulous, fantastic time on this new adventure she has embarked on … wherever she is and will be … and keep a good spot for me, and all of us when we eventually get there.
Bye Aban Mummy…
Bawa (n Dinesh)