Recollections on Sri Chinmoy: Guru's Drivers
- Soon after I moved to New York in December of 2000, someone asked me if I would like to guard Aspiration-Ground for a day. I happily agreed, as I love the meditative atmosphere of the place.
I think it was an unusually balmy Wednesday afternoon in late March, I was wearing my light blue parka, and I was sitting by the gate reading one of Guru's more recent poetry books (maybe a volume from "Seventy-Seven Thousand Service-Trees").
Anyway, at around nine o'clock, Vinaya's car pulls up to the gate and he honks the horn. I noticed there was an elderly Indian man sitting in the passenger seat beside him, whom I took for Prahlad. Vinaya's a good friend of mine, so I opened the gate with an exaggerated bow and a colorful flourish. Then as the car pulled in, "Prahlad" reached out and blessed me a few times with a gentle wave of his hand.
I turned white when I realized it was actually Guru! I mean, Vinaya drives this beaten up Chevrolet station wagon with a faded paint job. I couldn't imagine Guru would want to be driven around in that! I really didn't know that Vinaya was one of Guru's main drivers.
The fact that Guru would be happy with such unassuming portage really impressed me. He always gave us the message of simplicity and humility, and he definitely practiced those virtues in his life.
- Talking about Guru's humility I personally was amazed when I saw the Peace Run video 95. My Guru that was so powerful and loving and who I appreciate and adore so much in every possible way, was so humble and invisible that it is hard to understand at the first moment.
It was the scene from Italy and Guru was in line with the married couples who waited for the Pope's blessing. Guru was in white pants and red sweater, patiently waiting with the Torch and an Italian disciple boy dressed in the same way.
Guru's face looked like a 20 year old, and he was smiling gently, totally relaxed, looking around and playing his role of a student of peace, as he used to call himself.
The line was so, so long and God alone knows how many hours they were waiting before they came that close as it shows on the video.
Finally, it was their turn to meet Pope. Guru's smile became more gentle and broad, his humility reached the highest as he bows before the pope with his folded hands. He took the Torch from the disciple and gave it to Pope, who took it and in front of hundreds of thousands people made the cross in the air with it. It was the moment that Guru was waiting for, and it was so powerful in spite of just few seconds that it lasted.
When it was over, in a fleeting second Guru turned around and his face became strong and powerful and at the same time so compassionate and loving as it always used to be. That example how he behaves
showed me that Guru was really serving the world in such an obvious way, and there is no such a thing like ego and pride if he needed to fulfill God's will and reach the goal.
Who ever has a chance to see this video please do, because it can't be well enough described in words what it shows.
- Hi, after a long absence from the site I have finally caught up on all the new posts and I have to say that I am really enjoying all of these sweet stories. Thank you for taking the time to post them.
I really liked this one in particular as it reminds me of one of my own "drive-by" encounters with Guru:
A few of us were down in New York one weekend and on the Sunday I headed out for a mid-morning run. The light was red as I reached the intersection but the coast was clear except for one really slow-moving car. I didn't feel like losing momentum so I proceeded to jaywalk in front of this snail-paced station wagon. I briefly glanced through the windshield and then I had to do a double-take: Guru was in the passenger seat!
Feeling a mixture of shock, reverence and embarrassment, I retraced my steps- walking backwards onto the sidewalk and then smiling and lifting my hands into a pranam.
Guru looked at me with a subtle, amused smile and waved his hand in blessing.
I was so grateful for such a sweet moment and I was absolutely thrilled for the rest of the day! It still makes me smile when I recall this today.
Like Mahiruha, I was also surprised to see Guru being driven in an old beat-up car. Then again, Guru had such a divinely spontaneous personality that every moment was a surprise. Sometimes I miss the excitement of "what will Guru do next?" or "where will I see Guru next?" but bringing those special memories to the fore really helps and I am so lucky that my life is still full of so many divine surprises.