Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Shri Gopal Swami

Shri Gopal Swami was a great devotee of Shri Nathji. He was born in a Brahmin family in Ambala, Haryana. He was the second of three brothers. His father was a very rich railway and road contractor who had undertaken many famous projects like the Ambala Kalka highway. He had three palatial mansions in Ambala. Gopal Swami was spiritually inclined from birth and was attracted towards meditation. He first started to worship Hanumanji. He did it so intensely that Hanumanji appeared and said that "I am always busy in service of Shri Ram. So it is best that you worship Shiva". Then for a long time Gapalji meditated of Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva also appeared and said that He remains in Meditation so now you should worship His consort, the great Mahamayi (Mother Goddess).  It was then that Gopalji started to worship the Goddess. Mahamai appeared before him and he becomes a staunch devotee of the Goddess. In his youth he met many Hindu mystics and Muslim fakirs. He tried to learn different aspects of spiritualism, astrology and tantra from them and continued his worship of the Goddess. Later in life when Gopalji met Shri Nathji, Shri Nathji told him that you were able to come to this Darbar due to the blessings of Mahamai.
  Now as fate would have it, Gopal Swami’s father, become addicted to gambling. He become a great gambler and ventured to far off places like Mumbai to gamble. Once is Mumbai he lost several lacs of rupees in one day. It was a shocking loss for him and he went mad. For many days he roamed aimlessly in the jungles of Nasik. After many months he regained his senses and returned home but his addiction to gambling didn’t stopped and he lost all his wealth. The family suddenly became poor. Gopal Swami’s mother died of this great shock. After that Gopalji, took the affairs of the household in his own hand as his father had given up all work, his younger brother was still studying and elder brother was a man of low virtue, who didn’t contributed to the family in anyway. Gopalji took up a job as a clerk in the irrigation department of Punjab. Now that he also got married, he somehow tried to support his family, with his meager income.  Those were the days when the Bhakra Nangal dam project was underway. Gopal Swami was posted at Nangal and soon rose to higher ranks in the department due to his intelligence, honesty and hard work and he contributed immensely to this prestigious project. He was so honest that many of his colleagues were afraid of him.
  While in Nangal his wife, Raj Bala developed serious gas trouble and she was not getting much relief from any medicine. It was then that they happen to visit Shri Nathji’s devotee, Shri C.L. Khosla. Khoslaji was working in the office of the Auditor General of Punjab at Nangal. After office he used to practice homeopathy. He was well known as a successful doctor. Khoslaji’s medicines worked positively for Raj Bala and as with homeopathic medicines the course was very long and they had to come every week to take new doses. Thus there was frequent interaction between Khoslaji and Gopalji.  During the several meeting that Gopalji and her wife had with Khoslaji, a mutual bond developed between them and Khoslaji told them about his association with Shri Nathji. Gopalji was reluctant initially as he was a staunch devotee of the Mother Goddess. Gradually as Gopalji continued to hear about Shri Nathji from Khoslaji and an intense desire awakened in him to seek Darshan of Shri Nathji. Underneath are given some experiences of Gopalji, of the Divinity of Shri Nathji, which are not recorded in the Mahagranth.
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Gopalji’s questionnaire

First meeting of Gopal Swami and Shri Nathji took place in 1976. Khoslaji send a telegram to Shri Nathji is Mussoorie and told Him about Gopal Swami. He seeks permission to bring Gopalji and other devotees from Nangal for His Darshan. The next day itself, he got a reply from Shri Nathji, where he was allowed to bring Gopal Swami to the Darbar. Early next morning Gopalji and family and some friends accompanied Khoslaji to Mussoorie to seek Shri Nathji’s Darshan. They were total of 12 people who started from Nangal. They had planned to return by nightfall. They first reached Saharanapur. From their they took a bus to Dehradun and then to Mussoorie. Though he had heard a lot about the greatness of Shri Nathji from Khoslaji, Gopalji had his reservations. So he had prepared a questionnaire comprising of 56 questions for Shri Nathji. When Gopalji and his family came before Shri Nathji they were overwhelmed by Shri Nathji’s persona and sat there for many hours in self forgetfulness. Shri Nathji then said “ Gopalji! I have answered all your questions, now see if there is any question left in the questionnaire you brought for me. Gopalji suddenly realized that all his questions were answered unasked. They have planned to leave by 5 in the evening as after that there is no conveyance available from Mussoorie after that. But Shri Nathji's discourse had lasted many hours and now it was 10 in the night. They all were thinking how they will go back now. Shri Nathji told them to go to Nangal after giving His blessings. They all packed their bags and ran towards the Library bus stand. From the mall road they saw a brand new bus standing at the bus stand below. To their surprise the conductor told them that it was heading for Saharanpur and has 12 seats vacant in the bus. This was exactly the headcount of this group from Nangal. He told them to climb down comfortably and there is no need to rush. On reaching Saharanpur they got a direct train to Nangal at 2 .30. They reached Nangal comfortably early morning.
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Signatures without ink

Gopal Swami tested the divinity of Shri Nathji on many occasion. Like In 1976, when  Shri Nathji gave the newly published book, Daivi Kirne to Gopalji. Gopalji requested Shri Nathji to sign the book. He deliberately gave a pen without any ink. Shri Nathji took the pen and whispered to Gopalji. “Is there ink inside?” Gopalji said nothing. Shri Nathji signed with the pen. And after that HH Priya Nathji also signed. The pen flawlessly recorded their signatures in blue ink. Then when Gopalji got it back, he observed the pen was dry as before and there was no ink.
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Sari in Nangal


Raj Bala, wife of Gopalji,  also has faith equal to that of her husband. In 1977 Gopal Swamiji got invitation to attend the marriage of HH Priya Nathji in Mussoorie. Raj Bala wished to give a sari as wedding gift to the bride, Priyavariji. Now Nangal where the Swami’s used to stay, is a town on border of Punjab and Himachal Pradesh and in this part of India, no one wears a Sari. All ladies exclusively wear salwar kamiz.  So none of the shops here ever had any sari put on sale. So Raj Bala was wondering how she could get a sari as a wedding gift. No shop had it in Nangal and they were to leave for Mussoorie tomorrow. She was engrossed in such thoughts when suddenly she saw a beautiful sari being displayed by a shop keeper outside his shop. This was the only one sari that he had for sale. This shop and no shop in Nangal, for that matter ever kept saris. It was a beautiful light green colored sari with a red border. Raj Bala liked it very much and was overjoyed to see it. She purchased it immediately and asked the shop keeper how come today he has put up a sari for sale. He said that he had ordered a fresh stock of lose cloths for his supplier in some other town. When the parcel arrived today, he found this sari also as part of the consignment, though he had not ordered for it. May be it was accidentally send by the supplier. Since the sari was there, he put it on sale.
 Raj Bala presented the sari as a wedding gift. On the second day after the wedding ceremony when devotees gathered for Shri Nathji’s discourse, Raj Bala saw Priyavariji wearing the same sari that she had presented, which was looking very beautiful. Shri Nathji pointed to Raj Bala that this is your sari. Raj Bala was overjoyed that Shri Nathji has acknowledged her gift and miraculously procured this beautiful sari for her in Nangal to give as a wedding present.
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Knee pain disappeared

Gopal Swami and family accompanied Shri Nathji to Nagpur in 1978. There they stayed in a very large house. The landlord stayed on the ground floor and Shri Nathji and His entourage had the entire first floor. This was rented by Dandewali for Shri Nathji. Every day Gopalji was given the seva to fetch vegetables and grocery from the main market which was situated about 5 kms away. He used to cover the distance walking. It proved to be a continuous stain on his knee. Every day his knee pained due to the long walks. One day when he could no longer bear it and addressed his plight to Shri Nathji. That night Shri Nathji had pain in the knee. Next morning Gopalji felt no pain or discomfort in his knee and he never had any knee related problems all his life since then. 
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Pangs of Separation
  
 After returning from the Nagpur trip there was a time when Gopalji and his family had not visited Shri Nathji for a long time. They wanted to meet Him and one day they felt uncontrollable separation grief. There was a phone in Gopalji’s office which was accessible to him. Since morning he kept trying Shri Nathji’s phone numbers of Mussoorie and Delhi, but there was no response. He went back in evening and tried many times, but no one picked up. Then finally at night he said to his wife, Let us go to office and try the number again. The urge to know about Shri Nathji had become intense in them. They tried the numbers again but still there was no response. At about 9’ o clock they decided to go back home. When they reached the house it was about 9.30 in the night. They saw a post man leaving their house. The post man stopped when he saw Gopalji approaching towards the house. He said that he has brought a telegram from Delhi. He had finished his duty but then decided to deliver this telegram also which had arrived just then. He came to the house and as no one was there, decided to go after waiting for some time. He handed them the telegram. Gopalji had an aunt in Delhi. They thought that she had sent the telegram. But when they saw the telegram they were overjoyed to know that it was from Shri Nathji. It was an invitation for them to attend a function at the Darbar.

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