JAGANATH A. S.& RUKMANI
(Alloji Subdra Murthy
A. S. Jaganath served in Indian railways and stayed in Vijayawada. He came to know about Baba from his colleague Mankkyala Rao and had first darshan of Meher Baba in Sahwas program of November1955. Seeing Meher Baba, he felt a shock in His body and lost himself for some time. When he came to normal consciousness He found that his shirt was completely wet in biting cold weather. He found that Baba’s was glowing like sun and His face extremely beautiful beyond any description. Subsequently he had Baba darshan several times. He attended duties of volunteer in 1956 at Pune, in 1957 at Sakori along with his wife and, 1958, 1962, 1964 and 1965. He shifted to Meherabad to spend his last days at the lotus feet of Meher Baba. He breathed his last on 24th December 2014 in private hospital at Ahmednagar near Meherabad.
His wife Rukmani Alloji (of Hyderabad, now resident in Meherabad) told her story of coming to Baba.
She first met Baba in a dream, in her home, while her husband was attending the 1955 Sahavas. Baba came to her with long flowing hair, wearing a white sadra, with a red tilak on His forehead. When she asked her husband what Baba looked like, he described Him to be just as the One who had come to her in her vision, but minus the tilak. But when Rukmani saw Baba for the first time in Sakori, He looked just like He came to her in her vision with the red tilak.
There were a series of incidents that occurred soon after the Sahavas that convinced her heart even more that Baba was God. One incident concerned a 100 year-old woman who lived near her. When she inquired why this woman was so often crying out in pain, she was told that she was beaten and ridiculed by her family. Once when they were having a function, her family even placed the elderly woman out on the road in her bed. Rukmani felt so much sympathy for this poor suffering woman that she implored Baba to allow the woman to die right after the function, asking Him why she had to suffer so much. Four days later the woman died and Rukmani was exuberant in her deepening experience that Baba was God (“He’s God! He’s God!”)
After the 1957 Sahavas, Rukmani, along with her husband, Jagganath, saw Baba at many sahavases, often at Guruprasad in Pune. Because their time at first with Baba in Pune was so intimate, the small number of followers sitting with Him enabled them to sit so close to their Beloved. At the first large darshan at Guru Prasad, Rukhmini was feeling so sad because she had to sit far away from Baba. She was longing for the physical closeness she was used to experiencing with Him, when He motioned to her and her husband to sit close to Him.
Jagganath told of a very special experience He had with Baba during the 1958 Sahavas. He was volunteering at the Sahavas, as he always did, when Baba announced that he wanted all the lovers from each town to come before Him together. Jagganath rushed over to where his townspeople were gathered, only to trip on a rope hidden in the ground, landing on his knee and causing him to be unable to move.
Baba took note of His plight and told Dr. Barucha to tend to him, later directing him to take Jagganath to the hospital. Jagganath implored Dr. Barucha to be allowed to have Baba's private darshan, and Baba agreed to see Jagganath at 6:00 a.m. the next day.
Jagganath left the hospital in a stretcher as he still could not walk. As the stretcher was brought before Baba, the room was totally silent. This silence lasted for a while. This silence was so unusual for Baba. Everyone was wondering what would happen next. No one could imagine what Baba might do. the silence continued.
Then Baba slowly lifted his right foot and slowly put it on Jagannath’s chest as he lay on the stretcher.
Jagganath, with tears in his eyes, held fast to Baba's foot, all time seeming to stop for him. After a while Baba asked him, "Are you satisfied?", which brought more tears to Jagannath’s eyes (and heart). He could not believe that Baba, God, was asking him if he was satisfied,
When Jagannath feels this experience with Baba, even in the present, what comes to his heart still, is Baba asking him “Are you satisfied?”