The mystical East travels half-way round the Earth to meet the West and SKY is born.
Following in the giant footsteps of Swami Vivekananda and Paramhamsa Yogananda, Kinkar Vitthal Ramanuja travels from India to the U.K. Accompanied by an intimate disciple and the greatest living Bauls, armed with spiritual literature and musical instruments, the band of disciples work to spread the gospel of Naam Avatara Sri Sitaramdas Omkarnath abroad. The diaspora come homing in to the Guru, and, many human interest stories - emerge as the Guru counsels them.
Extremely interesting narration by the diarist, Raj Supe, helps you. Enter spirituality from a down to earth plane.
Gems of metaphysical truths, scattered casually by the Guru, are faithfully recorded in this memoir. He describes in fine detail a mystical experience of a higher level of initiation. We witness in the end the climactic event of the dawn of SKY (Siddha Kundalini Yoga), a landmark Yoga innovation.
Anyone interested in religious thought or spirituality will find much of value in Pilgrim of the Sky.
This book could be one of the greatest aids to a spiritual aspirant life.
Raj Supe, aka Kinkar Vishwashreyananda, is a poet, storyteller and a novelist. He is a seeker and a bhakta— a follower, nay, an instrument of Sri Sitaramdas Qmkarnath.
His works include Three No Trumps (a novel, 1998), Sagarika Anusagarika Echoes for Nine Rivers (poetry, 2001) and translations of religious texts such as Cloudburst of Thousand Suns and Jai Jai Ram Krishna Han. His writings convey the passionate intensity of a seeker, the sincerity of one who hopes to bring about an ideal mix of traditional mythic imagery and the urgencies of postmodern life. In the words of a leading poet, “he has the anonymity of the saint-poet on the one hand and the self-expression of the modern writer on the other.
Everybody in this world is looking for true happiness. The search translates itself into forays in many acquisitive directions money, physical enjoyment, relationships, information-based knowledge, recognition, fame etc. A common realisation is that happiness gained through these pursuits is transitory and disappears soon. Eventually, one is left tired and exhausted. This, often futile, search is the fate and also the dilemma of common man Of course, through this long process of trial and error, spanning many life-times, some men, having exhausted available options, start wondering if it is wise to look for happiness in the outside world. They start entertaining serious questions about the essence and purpose of human existence. In due course, such men turn into seekers and become ready for the ultimate journey — the journey within to discover the Self, the source of eternal joy.
Normally, one associates God or the Self with the functions of creation (shrishti), maintenance (sthiti) and dissolution (vilaya). One thinks of the Self as an absolute energy with infinite power and intelligence. It not only gives birth to this creation but also maintains it and will eventually dissolve it. After dissolution, this energy will still exist and undertake further cycles of creation, maintenance and dissolution.
The Shiva Sutras say, Atma Nartakah — this creation is one with the Self and is the dance of the Self (atma). How true! Dance is the only art form, where the art and the artist are inseparable. Despite this oneness of the Self (atma) and the creation, what we see around us is a world of separables multitudes of forms and attributes, each different from the other.
We do not see the underlying thread of the energy of the Self. Why? This is because the Self has concealed itself in the heart of every being or thing. This is the fourth function of God concealment (nigraha). God will be revealed only if this concealment were to be removed. This removal is the fifth function. It is called grace (anugraha). By His grace alone, one is granted the sight to directly experience the Truth, as it is. God has delegated the function of grace to the Guru.
In the present age, the human mind is exceedingly sharp and skilled. Also, there is an explosion of information; tips on any subject can be gleaned within no time from the internet with one click of a mouse. So, it is easy for men of intellect to question the need for a Guru. But, experience shows — knowledge is not knowing. Knowledge is information and precedent based. Knowing is intuitive and experiential. A simple example illustrates this point. One may take many video lessons about how to swim. But, this does not serve much purpose. One has to jump into a pool and start thrashing his arms and legs in water. Only then there is a possibility that he will pick up the skill of swimming. If he were to find a good coach, he will be able to refine the skill and overcome handicaps very easily. Knowledge can at best be supportive (sahayak). It can never be decisive (vidhayak). Guru is one who not only imparts knowledge but helps convert it into knowing.
In spirituality, the Guru is a Siddha, a perfected being unshakably established in the Truth by the grace of his Master in an unbroken chain of disciplic succession. Siddhas have the unique ability to awaken a seeker to experience of the divine through the mysterious initiation of Shaktipat Diksha the descent of energy. A charge of Master’s energy enters the disciple. It is a great moment. The disciple’s spiritual energy is awakened. This initiation makes one a dwija (twice born). One receives the physical body through his parents. Through initiation, the Guru gives him another birth. The physical body remains them same. But, the flow of awareness changes its direction — from outside to inside. It marks the beginning of an irreversible process of inner transformation and sadhana that will eventually turn the disciple into a Guru one day.
Transmission of knowing from the Guru happens in a very mysterious manner. Iritially, a person approaching the Guru may be a keen student. A student essentially looks for academic knowledge from the Guru. He analyses the Guru’s teachings and compares them with those of his own belief systems. Such a student receives very little from the Guru. However, the student may be charmed by magnetic personality of the Guru and a relationship of trust may begin to build. Now, the student starts putting the teachings of the Guru into practice.
This is how a student turns into a disciple. As discipleship grows, his practice deepens and becomes more intense. He is no longer interested in mere academics. Another change takes place. He gets utterly fascinated by the Guru. He loves to hang around the Guru, soak in his presence. He watches every action of the Guru intently. He is not so much interested in what the Guru does. He more interested in how the Guru does things how the Guru walks, how the Guru eats his food, how the Guru holds a flower, how the Guru handles questions, how the Guru treats visitors. These moments of intense observation bring the disciple very close to Guru mentally and he begins to receive a lot from him.
As the ultimate flowering, the disciple turns into a devotee. Now, physical nearness to the Guru is not necessary at all. No matter how far away the Guru is, the disciple is continuously absorbed in the thoughts of his Guru. The Guru is his constant inner companion. He sees the Guru in everyone he meets. He considers every situation in his life to be the handiwork of the Guru. There is an inner communion with the Guru. This is a great occurrence. Now, the Guru empties himself fully into the devotee. He walks like the Guru. He talks like the Guru. He becomes the Guru.
Shri Thakur Sitaram Omkarnath and Kinkar Vitthal Ramanuj Maharaj are Siddha Masters from a great lineage that has not only harmonised the streams of bhakti (devotion) and jnana (knowledge) but has also transformed innumerable lives by imparting iwam (the Holy Name). They are living embodiments of the eternal principles of Sanatan Dharma that resonate in and find harmony with teachings of all faiths. It is in this lineage that Shri Raj Supe (Kinkar Vishwashreyananda), a perfect disciple and ‘manas putra’ of Shri Vitthal Ramanuj Maharaj, has received rigorous training to become a worthy torch bearer for the Omkarnath Movement.
Kinkar Vitthal Ramanuj Maharaj went on for a three- month-long visit to United Kingdom to impart the teachings of Shri Thakur Sitaram Omkarnath. Shri Raj Supe accompanied him as his close companion and assistant. Also, as Omkarnath Movement’s representative, it was Shri Supe’s responsibility to speak to various congregations. Pilgrim of the SKY is an account of happenings during those three months. One sees all persons and events through the sensitive vision of Shri Supe, who does not miss even the smallest detail.
Pilgrim of the SKY is no ordinary account. It brings out the greatuess of Vitthal Maharaj his immense humility, his compassion towards everyone, his acceptance of everything around him and his great insights. One can see how Vitthal Maharaj is totally surrendered to his Guru, Thakur Sitaram Onkarnath, as he effortlessly quotes gem after gem from the latter’s utterances, to give convincing answers to intriguing questions. Maharaj’s words of advice on various topics comparing one Guru with the other, recognising and abiding by the intrinsic teachings of all prophets, internal and external worship, connecting to one’s own Guru, secret of seva (service to humanity, sanyas (as smyak nyas), consumption of prasad (food items offered to God or received from the Guru), commitment to intense self-effort rather than just depending upon grace kindle true understanding that will steady any distracted mind. What strikes most is the universality of approach of Vitthal Maharaj, which no one will have any issues with.
At another level, this book is about inner growth of Shri Raj Supe. He provides a frank view of how Vitthal Maharaj helped him recognise certain distracting tendencies he needed to work on. As the book shows, the required work is done. It results in the ultimate flowering of Shri Supe through the sublime initiation (diksha) of Maha-Shaktipat through Shri Thakur’s Padukas, Shri Raj Supe becomes Kinkar Vishwashreyananda and receives the authority to spearhead the Qmkarnath Movement. The final culmination comes in the momentous revelation of Siddha Kundalini Yoga (SKY) to Vitthal Maharaj. Born out of a Siddha’s samkalpa (intention), SKY is sure to bring similar flowering in the lives of so many others, bringing about a great spiritual revolution.
To conclude, this book is no different from the Guru or his instructions. As such, it is permeated with the Guru’s subtle vibrations. Reading the book is sat -sanga (the company of the Truth). This will surely plant and nurture seeds of discipleship amongst many. The readers will find their lives changing for the better in many miraculous ways.
Before parting, I must offer my humble salutations to the Guru Principle. I choose to do this through the following verse of Shri Guru Gita:
Mannathah Shri Jagannathah, Madguruh Sri-Jagadguruh Mamatma Sarvabhutatma Tasmai Shri Gurave Namah Jai Guru.
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