The knee specialist in the Bahamas

Today I went to a doctor that Edith recommended. This doctor is a great knee therapist. Snehashila went to the same one yesterday and she got tremendous results.

Her patients have to go for nine treatments and each one is an hour. I will go for four more days, two times a day, at 10:00 am and 4:00 pm. There is no heat, no sensation, when this doctor treats me. The same treatment is available in Munich, Germany, and it also started recently in Canada. A German doctor discovered it. For the last two years they have been doing it in Germany. America does not want to have this kind of treatment yet. But by next year or the following year America may have it.

I do not know how or why, but my German doctor-disciples did not think of trying this kind of treatment on my knee.

— 5 December 1997, The Bahamas

Morning blessings in the Bahamas

Around 7:15 this morning I was sitting outside. All of a sudden Vidura’s soul came to me for blessings and love. I blessed his soul. Then I thought, “He is physically not here in the Bahamas, but his soul came to me for blessings. What is his wife, Devaki, doing?”

It did not take ten seconds! I saw Devaki passing by and I gave her a little smile. Just after Vidura’s soul came to me, she passed by. How the souls work! Tomorrow is his birthday, but I blessed him at my place before we left New York. I had a birthday party for him. Today his soul came to me for more blessings.

— 5 December 1997, The Bahamas

Shopping for sandals

I went to buy sandals. I tried on one pair and then I told the young girl, “I need one size larger.”

She did not understand me. She said, “Why can you not tell me the size? Then I can just get it for you.”

I said, “I do not know the size, but I can see that I need only one size bigger.”

This sales assistant was so rude and nasty, as if it were a crime that I did not know the size. With shoes, I can say that I wear seven and a half, but with sandals, what kind of size could I tell her? I looked at the sandals, but the size was not mentioned there.

This girl was so mad that I was not telling her the size. She was insisting and insisting. God knows why, all of a sudden I had to say to Alo, “She is so thin. Perhaps if she had been a little fatter, she would have been nicer to me.” She was so thin and very nasty.

— 6 December 1997, The Bahamas

Fat equals nice

Then I went to the store next door to buy something else. At this store, the sales assistant was fatter than the fattest. And you cannot imagine how kind and how compassionate she was! She was speaking to me so kindly and compassionately. She made me feel that even if I did not buy anything, she would not mind. But I did buy quite a few things.

Then Alo wanted to buy some placemats. The young girl went outside the store to show Alo where to buy them. She was so kind to Alo.

So you see, my wish was fulfilled. In the first store I said, “Perhaps if this girl had been a little fatter, then she would have been nicer to me.” Then, in the very next store, a fat girl was so kind and compassionate.

— 6 December 1997, The Bahamas

Shamelessly heavy

This time I am absolutely shamelessly heavy! Twenty-five or thirty years ago, once I weighed 178 pounds. In Puerto Rico, when Nadeshwar saw my stomach, he said, “Shame, shame!” I will never forget it! Strangely enough, those pictures show that I look even heavier than 178 pounds.

Now my fate has cursed me to repeat the story. Two days ago, I weighed myself and I cried. I wrote down in my notebook, “Shame, shame,” and I put four or five exclamation marks after it. Now I am determined to lose 25 or 30 pounds. Each time I lose five pounds, I shall give prasad.

The day before yesterday, we came to the Bahamas. Yesterday my weight was 174½ pounds, so 3½ pounds I had already lost. Today I have lost a pound and a half more, so tonight I shall give prasad and share my happiness with you.

I arrived here at the ripe, heavy weight of 178. Today I am 173. Very often, when I weigh myself in my house, I go downstairs because the downstairs scale is one pound less. Upstairs I look at my weight on the scale and feel miserable. Then, when I come downstairs, the scale is one pound less and it gives me so much joy. Even a half a pound or a quarter of a pound less gives me boundless joy. I struggle and struggle only to see that I am a quarter pound less. That kind of torture I give to myself. When I really lose weight, I get tremendous joy. But to lose weight, one has to cultivate so much determination.

— 6 December 1997, The Bahamas

The kind weight-loss Guru

I am telling you how kind my weight-loss guru, Savyasachi, is. I was at the doctor’s getting treatment. To my widest surprise, Savyasachi came to me with a bottle. Inside it there was a kind of peanut. He put some peanuts on my palm. When I want to become a saint and lose weight, he gives me poison! But I was really hungry at that moment and he intuitively felt it. Then afterwards, when I went into the car, I begged him to give me more.

— 6 December 1997, The Bahamas

Nowhere frustration-thief

Here in the Bahamas, there is the hustle and bustle of life, but somehow everything flows very happily. Here the frustration is infinitely less than in America or elsewhere. Somehow, on this island, the frustration-thief finds it difficult to enter into us.

— 6 December 1997, The Bahamas

Bermuda reminiscences

I have so many memories from our visit to Bermuda many, many years ago. What pleased me most was a dance that two pairs of friends — Sanatan, Rupantar, Savysachi and Ashrita — performed to my song “Nriter tale tale”. They dressed in such funny costumes and their dance was absolutely unique.

On that trip I also felt the devotional and aspiring aspect of the disciples when Alo took them on Christmas Eve to sing in the streets in the neighbourhood of our hotel. Their singing was so simple, sincere and pure. I did not go, but I was watching them. They were wearing white and holding candles. They looked absolutely like angels. These good experiences I will always treasure in Bermuda.

Bermuda was also my humiliation. There it is very hilly. Everybody was riding little motorbikes. I thought I would also try. Savyasachi and another disciple were holding me on the motorbike because I could not keep my balance. Then God smashed my pride. Of all people, Maitreyi had to go by me so fast. And she is much older than I am.

I said, “Impossible! Enough, enough!”

In those days I had such pride in my physical. Was there anything that I could not do? Now there is nothing that I can do. Physical fitness always made me feel that I could do anything. But when I saw this disciple of mine driving away on the motorbike, I said, “Too much! Too much!” Then I said, “Stop! I do not want to ride any more.”

Another painful experience was when I scolded very seriously the top girls’ singing groups for the very first time because I was not pleased with their performances.

But again, if I have to speak frankly, the simple truth is that in those days the disciples had more love, more devotion and more surrender than they do nowadays. At every second they tried to please me. Now I try desperately to please them. The story has changed.

So in life there are always good memories and painful memories. The past that does not help us is worse than dust. But the past that helps us is better then gold. Most of the past is worse than the worst. Painful memories weaken the subtle nerves and then we become the losers. By remembering the deplorable past, we lose our divinity. It is all the time hurting like a very sharp sword.

So let us only try to remember the experiences that are golden.

— 7 December 1997, The Bahamas

The boat ride

Today I enjoyed our boat ride so much. When we take a boat ride, there is such joy. Water symbolises Infinity. When we look at the water, vastness automatically comes into our mind. The narrow mind disappears. We all have narrow minds, but as soon as we look at the vast expanse, our narrow minds disappear — at least for a few hours. Then again, when we come back to land, our narrow minds come back.

— 7 December 1997, The Bahamas

Morning greetings

The people are so nice here! Everywhere I go, people say, “Good morning, good morning!” When I am out walking, I want to enter into my own meditation, but at least twenty times people say, “Good morning!” If there are three ladies passing by, all the three ladies have to say, “Good morning!”

My answer is to smile. Again, how many times I have to smile! Sometimes I am walking so fast and I find it difficult to think of smiling at them. This happens on the path right in front of the hotel.

— 7 December 1997, The Bahamas

Conversation with a parrot

In the lobby of the hotel, there is a parrot. Today I was talking to the parrot and he was talking and talking and talking to me! He speaks very good English!

— 7 December 1997, The Bahamas

God’s world

If this is not God’s world, whose world is it? I am an Indian; I live in America; and, during my absence, my house is being taken care of by a German, Minati. So from where to where!

God has given us a family, a world-family. An infinite family He has given us everywhere. Here we come from America, Australia, Austria, Canada, France, New Zealand and so many other places. Infinity we have; only we need oneness.

— 14 December 1997, The Bahamas

The guard’s deception

Savyasachi drove us to a village called Chichicastenango to do some shopping. As he was parking the car, he saw a middle-aged man nearby who had on a uniform. Savyasachi was under the impression that if he left the car there, this man would protect the car.

So we went to the market. At one place, I wanted to buy something. I bargained for about fifteen minutes, but it did not work. The man would not lower the price. So we went and ate. Then again I went back to that store. Alas, still my bargaining did not work. So I said, “I am not going to buy it.” We were fighting not for American five cents difference, but for their five cents! It is next to nothing! I wanted to buy ten sheets of paper. Finally, the man said, “If you buy two more sheets, you can get your original price.”

I said, “I am more than willing to buy twelve.” So I bought the paper.

We came back to the car and it was unharmed. As usual, Savyasachi gave the man a generous tip for guarding the car. However, the man was not satisfied. He said that because he was guarding the car, he did not go out for his lunch. He spoke English quite well.

So Savyasachi gave him more money, plus peanuts. Then, as we were getting ready to drive away, we saw that just by the side was a bank and he was the bank guard! When we first arrived, he told us that he guards the place and we thought he was there to guard the cars for people who are going to the market. That is why we gave him the money. Then he asked for more money because he did not go out to eat. We gave him a second time, only to discover that he was actually guarding the bank!

— 17 December 1997, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala

The stomach sufferers

I saw Kanan in the market. He was alone. I asked him, “What is Hashi doing?”

Then I found out that Hashi was sick. Here many people have stomach problems. The sufferers suffer for at least a day or two. Somehow God saved me this morning. I was playing on my Australian instrument and I was feeling nauseous and sick in every possible way. But eventually it went away. I escaped. I was one of the lucky ones.

— 17 December 1997, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala