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Baba Story: One Minute Nirvikalpa Samadhi

From: "Liila / Leslie"
Subject: Baba Story: One Minute Nirvikalpa Samadhi
Date: Tue, 05 Mar 2013 18:37:36 (00:00)


This entire email is composed of 2 parts:
(1) Posting: Baba Story: One Minute Nirvikalpa Samadhi
(2) Trailer Quote: When A Person Behaves Badly With You

 Each section is demarcated by asterisks (***).


Now and again, I review some of the stories from the publication, "I Am Yours" (2004) - a story book by NY sector margiis.

One day I selected a story on page 12 because I thought the story-teller was an ideal margii. When I read his account some serious questions arose in my mind. For simplicity and ease of reading, throughout this letter, I refer to the author of this particular story as Mr G.

If this story was casually told by some very junior or new margii, or written in a non-margii publication, then I would be less concerned. However, since this book is published by the "Ananda Marga Archives Department New York Sector" a division of Ananda Marga Inc, and Mr G himself is a key person in the Archives Dept, then there is cause for real concern. This is compounded by the fact that many editors are also involved. In such a circumstance, the publication must clearly reflect the teachings of Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji. But that has not happened.

The key item at hand is how to make our official publications better. The writing and publishing of a Baba story book should have a grand result, and not be prone to error and miscalculation. With this positive spirit, I share with you the following.

Finally, although this particular story by Mr G is short, there are numerous errors - some more serious than others. This email addresses two of the more critical faults, their repercussions, and how such problems can be averted in the future.



In the book, "I Am Yours", Mr G makes the following statement on page 14 when describing his experience in meditation:

"I did not see Baba, I only experienced the samadhi. I believe this to have been nirvikalpa samadhi."

According to the his description, he went into and out of this nirvikalpa samadhi experience in just a few minutes. Mr G had his alarm clock set, as did another margii present in the room. Thus, it is quite certain his experience occurred over a few minutes or even less.


Now let's see what Baba says about nirvikalpa samadhi. In various spiritual discourses Baba describes the exalted, blissful state of nirvikalpa samadhi. And He also describes the after-effects of achieving this blessed stance.
"Átmani mahadahaḿ cittánáḿ prańáshe nirgunásthitih nirvikalpa samádhi vá"

"Under natural circumstances these sadhakas [who attain nirvikalpa samadhi] remain without any external body-consciousness for about five or six hours. If the mind rises still higher, they can remain unconscious for 24 hours." (Ananda Marga Philosophy in a Nutshell - 5)

Thus in clear-cut language Baba pointedly states that if one attains nirvikalpa samadhi, then for the next 5-6 hours - at minimum - the sadhaka will not be aware of their surroundings and in most cases they need to be massaged by other sadhakas to regain bodily awareness etc. So for at least 5-6 hours one will not have any awareness of the external world, none at all. Not only that, they may experience all kinds of symptoms. Such sadhaks might shake, cry, laugh, or undergo any number of reactions. This type of samadhi is a very intense experience that wholly transforms one's body and mind for hours and hours. The effects are very apparent.

All of this Baba has well-detailed in His discourses as well as during innumerable demonstrations.


To review, on page 14 of the "I Am Yours" story book, our Mr G is proclaiming that he achieved that high exalted stated of nirvikalpa samadhi. There he clearly describes how one minute he was doing sadhana and got nirvikalpa samadhi, and then in the next moment he finished his meditation and was keenly aware of his external surroundings. As if in a flash, he went into nirvikalpa samadhi and then in the next heart-beat he was out of nirvikalpa samadhi, and very alert and oriented with this mundane world.

So this is all quite interesting because Sadguru Baba Himself carefully describes all the highly subtle aspects of nirvikalpa samadhi including that afterwards it takes at minimum 5-6 hours to gain bodily awareness. Yet Mr G tells how he came out of his "nirvikalpa samadhi" in a fraction of a second.

Thus his story does not at all conform to Baba's detailed description of nirvikalpa samadhi.


By this way, any reader will surely think that Mr G has not an iota of understanding about nirvikalpa samadhi - neither in practice nor in theory. Certainly, this does not reflect very well on Mr G.

More than that however, it reflects poorly on the editors. After all, Mr G sincerely wrote his account. But because he is not very aware about Ananda Marga teachings, his story goes astray. In that case, it was the editor's job to ensure the story was consonant with Ananda Marga philosophy. But this did not happen. Instead, a jarring error was made on the point of Ananda Marga spiritual philosophy.

Baba clearly tells us that it takes 5 - 6 hours or more to come out of nirvikalpa samadhi, and Mr G writes that he did it in a moment.

When readers come across this blatant error, they will certainly wonder why the editorial board did not fix this. They will furthermore consider that if such a critical error was made in this story, then the veracity of the entire book is put into question. After all, it was the editor's job to review each story for its relevance and accuracy. When they made such a glaring error with this story, then how can the other accounts be trusted and accepted as accurate and true.

Unfortunately, that is one key issue, but not the only problem of this particular story.


In this same story, which is really only a few pages in length (bottom of page 12 to the top of page 16, i.e. 3 1/2 pages), Mr G makes distinct reference to one of his "girlfriends" from decades ago. He unabashedly talks about his "girlfriend" from those days.

Yet in Ananda Marga, we do not support the girlfriend-boyfriend phenomena that is so prevalent in materialistic societies.

"It should be remembered that a woman’s friend is a woman and a man’s friend is a man. The more distant the relationship between men and women, the greater should be the courtesy maintained in mutual conversation and behaviour between them." (Caryacarya - 1, Social Relationship Between Men and Women)

In his written account, Mr G talks about his "girlfriend" without ever mentioning the fact that the western / materialistic concept of keeping "girlfriends" is not at all acceptable in Ananda Marga.

Indeed, the incident which he is describing occurred decades ago, and then writing about this as a senior margii, Mr G just plainly told about his girlfriend, without offering a clarification that now he understands that it was not proper to have a girlfriend etc. At the time of writing, Mr G was 50+ years of age and had been an Ananda Margii for decades and decades, so he should have known better; but even then he is not completely at fault. Only we can say he has a very low or passive understanding of Ananda Marga ideals. 

The real problem lies in that here again the editors did not intercede nor exercise their power of review. They just printed the story as is - as if girlfriends and boyfriends are acceptable in Ananda Marga. Remember, this is a book of Baba stories. The book was written in honour of Lord Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji. Every page and every word should reflect His ideals and it was the editor's bounden duty to do this. But they could not manage.

Thus, innocent readers who do not know about Ananda Marga teachings - especially those in the general society - will reach one of two conclusions:
(1) Keeping girlfriends is approved in Ananda Marga and that many senior margiis had or still have girlfriends;
(2) Or, you tell what such readers will think.

Some more experienced persons may think that the entire book is a myth. Because when the editors allowed for a very senior margii to write about his girlfriend and put forth a bogus account of nirvikalpa samadhi, they will even doubt the positive aspects of the book because on certain themes it is so far from Ananda Marga teachings. It will cast a dark shadow on the accuracy and veracity of each and every paragraph of this entire book - even the good devotional stories.


Upon further reflection, although the Mr G certainly did not get nirvikalpa samadhi, it could be that he fell into the type of samadhi described below. Because when Mr G had a girlfriend, he might have had this experience.

   "Viks'ipta Sama'dhi is that when the mind is engrossed in some higher thought for a time and then the very next moment it cuts adrift to its meaner propensities. Those that do not follow Yama-Niyama (codes of self-restraint and austerity) -- those that endeavor to attain God without the Sadhana of Samyama (Self-control), betray a plethora of distractions."
   "If a man without self-control indulges excessively in hallelujahs or divine songs (Kiirtana-bhajana), it is noticed that his mental proclivities temporarily get inclined towards the Divine Bearing during the time of kiirtana-bhajana, his body too shows evidence of pious traits, tears come into his eyes and he attains a Trance of Subjectivity (Bhava-Samadhi) as well. But the very next moment, i.e. immediately after his kiirtana-bhajana, his unrestrained and incontinent mind races towards mean propensities with a greater momentum."
   "That is why such types of Sadhakas take to very dishonest ways of life during the rest of their daily occupations. In other words they give themselves up to acts of depravity, deceitfulness--to defrauding their own relatives. The people also are a little chary of such types of carol-singers. The man without self-control does indeed enjoy a bit of transcendental happiness by forcing his mental flow towards the auspicious name of God, but soon after the stoppage of this divine panegyrics or 'hymn' (nama-kiirtana), his sand-dammed mind bursts and races towards the inauspicious names with re-doubled speed, i.e., at that time he appears to be more inclined to scandal-mongering and rudeness. You mark minutely how blatantly those that are bereft of self-control among the bhajan-singers, indulge in scurrilous languages under a little provocation." (Subhasita Samgraha - 4, p. 100)


Taken on the whole, this Baba story book titled "I Am Yours" is highly problematic on a number of fronts.

(1) Mr G's account of getting nirvikalpa samadhi for one minute goes against Ananda Marga spiritual philosophy. By reading his account, some are going to think that this whole book is just a myth. In which case, they will put the entire book aside and overlook very good entries by other sadhakas.

(2) Those who are wholly against Ananda Marga ideals are always looking for a weak link to cast us in a bad light. To that end they might publicize the gross errors in this book in order to tear down the reputation of Ananda Marga.

(3) Good sadhakas will not like to publish their valued stories in the future for fear of being associated with such a bad publication.


When writing stories - to avoid mishaps in the future - certain standards must be put in place. Here following are some for consideration.

All Baba stories written by sadhakas should have educative value; they should be itihasa.

"Iti hasiti ityarthe itiha'sah"

Meaning: "A resplendent reflection of collective life whose study will be of immense inspiration for future generations. 'Iti hasati' literally means, 'glowing example of glorious human dignity'." (Prout in a Nutshell - 8, p. 24)

By adhering to the distinguished code of itihasa, there will be dignity, value, and utility in our writing - all the while capturing the inner beauty and treasure of human life. Those reading will be highly benefited; it will propel them along the path of dharma.

We should never compromise with our ideology. Rather we are to maintain strict ideological standards in all aspects of life at all times - never sacrificing the word or spirit of dharma (Ananda Marga Ideology). So our written stories should also not swerve from the path.

By following Baba's above teachings, all future stories - especially those published in our prestigious books like "I Am Yours" - will reflect the inner spirit of Ananda Marga and be of ideological and devotional value to all readers.

All in all, I do appreciate that Mr G took the time to write. It is another matter that unfortunately he is not so familiar with the teachings and ideals of Ananda Marga. The main problem is that the editors of the book - "I Am Yours" - should have been more assertive in their duty. Ultimately, a publication of his nature - i.e. a Baba story book - should be reviewed by our Ananda Marga boards as well. That will help prevent further mishap in the future.


This book needs to be heavily edited and then republished. Not everyone is a writer, so when making a book from people's personal contributions, the editorial staff must be very proactive in ensuring each story reads properly and is consistent with Ananda Marga teachings. All edits should be then reviewed by the respective storyteller before final publication.

That is the healthy criticism that many have for this book. The book should be written in such a grand and lucid manner that it beautifully highlights the glory of Guru and the the organisation.

It is the long-standing tradition that devotees and sadhakas write their experiences about their journey along the path of spirituality. This has been going on for centuries and it will continue long into the future. So we should put forth a proper example for how to publish such a book about Lord Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji.


On the point of identity there is not much more to say other than the Mr G who wrote this story is Shrii Giridhara of Vermont (USA). He is the one recounting his experiences in the aforementioned manner. But again, with sincerity he wrote what he wrote. Unfortunately, the editors did not give him any guidance or review. That is the real problem. So the one most responsible for all these errors is the Senior Editor, Ac Phalashuddhananda Avt.


Here following is Baba's supreme blessing upon all those who take to the pen and aspire to be ideal writers, or litterateurs.

Shrii Shrii Anandamurti ji, "When litterateurs dedicate themselves to the service or sa'dhana' of literature...they have to cleanse all that is turbid, all that is inauspicious in individual life in the holy waters of their universal mentality, and then convey it sweetly and gracefully into the heart of humanity. Herein lies the fulfillment of their service, the consummation of their sa'dhana'." (Prout in a Nutshell - 10, p.2)

at His lotus feet,

The section below demarcated by asterisks is an entirely different topic,
completely unrelated to the above material. It stands on its own as a point of interest.

When A Person Behaves Badly With You

"Preach only satya. Whatever you have done with reasons thereof. Also, make it clear to them what you want to do and why you want to do.  The result of this highly useful (helpful) preaching is that the inferiority complex disappears from the mind of the common men. They are encouraged when they see that a common man like themselves is inspired with such a high ideal. The second result of this is as follows. The common result of this is as follows. The common people are not generally aware of your usefully high ideas. In every work, big or small, they cling to selfishness. So, learning everything pure and high through your easy and simple language they will co-operate with you, with a mind free from wrong notions. The third outcome of this is that they will be shorn off the wrong notions that may have crept into them by the propaganda made by the selfish persons with vested interests."

"Win over their heart by propagating satya but without abusing anyone. When, they will feel the ideal of satya and come to know of your untiring karma sa'dhana', naturally, they will abandon their wrong notions about you; they will even start respecting you."

"Even in private life when a person behaves with you badly or uses harsh words, don't behave with him in the same manner. You shall explain to him his duties gently. In case, anyone has a wrong impression, you shall show him the right path without scolding (abusing) him. Make it clear to him if possible with practical demonstration how harmful may be the effect of such habits. But always keep this in mind that in such cases your behavior must be like that of a friend, and never like that of an instructor. Your only object will be to get your advice accepted by him. the idea that he is fool and you are wise is not desirable in any party." (Ta'ttvika Diipika': Dvitiiya Parva)

Note: Here Baba is giving us invaluable guidelines for going pracara and bringing all onto the path of bliss.

1) At all times we should follow the code of satya - i. speaking the truth for universal welfare, never giving way to falsehood out of self-interest.

2) Those suffering from a superiority complex are unable to properly guide or teach others. For them, doing Ananda Marga pracar is basically impossible.

3) However, in the Supreme Command, Baba has allotted us the special duty "to bring all to the path of bliss" - to bring all to the divine path of Ananda marga. So this is a very sacred task which our Guru has given. Indeed it is the greatest social duty of human life.

4) Plus, we know that when Parama Purusa advents on this dusty earth then He Himself does not waste His time in any type of material pursuit; rather, He dedicates His each and every for the all-round development & emancipation of human beings.

5) The conclusion is that the most virtuous aspect of human life is serving others. And the best service - the most lasting service - is doing dharma pracar. For this reason we should sincerely follow Baba's above guideline.

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