GANJA SWAMI

GANJA SWAMI

A Saint Saikhed

Meanwhile, the young sadhu from Saikhed, Ganja Swami, had been staying at Meherabad for the past month. Baba had instructed him to repeat the Sanskrit word Om continuously in a low tone for 24 hours a day, except while eating and sleeping. "If you follow this instruction to the letter for five or six months," Baba stated, "the repetition will become automatic. Your body will begin to vibrate with the repetition, without any special effort on your part."

Two weeks after the sadhu arrived, Baba placed him on a partial fast of bread and water, once every 24 hours. "If you break this order," Baba warned him, "I will drive you out and 'brand' you so that you won't be able to get shelter anywhere else." The sadhu was told to remain aloof from the others and to continue repeating Om.

The sadhu would retire early in the evening, and at night when the mandali were asleep, he would awaken and begin chanting, "Ommm ... Ommm" continuously. His chanting naturally disturbed the men mandali who had to work all day at their respective duties and needed rest.

On the night of 25 August, when the sadhu began his repetition of Om, Ramjoo sat up in bed and began his own unusual chant. The sadhu would say "Om," and as if in reply, Ramjoo would reciprocate with "Marbome " which means, "Shout louder!" Again the sadhu would chant, "Om," and again Ramjoo's answer would come, "Marbome." When this happened several times, the sadhu became distraught.

In the morning he had an encounter with the kitchen staff over a cup of tea. It became the final straw, and he announced that he was leaving. Baba looked surprised and inquired, "Didn't you come here for God-realization? You are going away without it."

The sadhu said regretfully, "This is not an ashram but a house of rogues! I am fed up with your so-called disciples! If you cannot improve them, how can you give me God-realization?" Baba urged him to stay, but he would not change his mind. Baba instructed him to return to Dhuniwala Baba, and he went on his way, though he was weeping when he departed from Baba, as he was sincere and realized his failure in obeying Baba's instructions.