Amidst the cacophony, her voice would reach me every morning, in those days of childhood. Care, that was abundant, was coupled with strict regime of do’s and don’ts which made up my childhood life. Stores of epics built up my days and nights, in those days where I played at the huge mansion where my mother had grown up.
It was a scary night, when I snuggled close to her, seeking protection and love. Strong that she was herself, she held my hands and made me speak out the holy mantras, gently- softly, adding a flowery tenderness to each name she uttered. Her fingers guided me to perform that which I later understood as ‘Japam’. Thus, without a notice or a dictation, she led me in the first path of spiritual life, – teaching me independence, strength and building in faith in the Supreme.
Years passed by, and I marvelled at her glow. Not that years favoured her more, yet the unfading beauty of those eyes captured my senses every time I visited her. Snuggling close to her, I smelt her fragrance, the fragrance of freshly lit incense, right after her worship. Meditate- meditate – meditate! That was her guideline, almost always. Be in the world, never run away, but know He alone is True. Keep your focus at the Truth while you perform your assigned roles, she mentioned – innumerable times.
It was just a few months back that I visited her. A nonagenarian by now, she outlived almost every one of her generation. Settled in herself, yet another time I marvelled at her. Hardly talking, quite engaged in herself, yet she was alert to the environment around. In her love, I noted the comforting detachment that she has mastered over the years. Placing herself at the feet of her Guru, she looked at every one with love yet with fond detachment. ‘Have you eaten’ she asked? That was her nature! But beyond that she contained in herself as she gently went on reciting the name of the lord – within herself. I looked at her, I admired her and knew somewhere that this was the last time I was seeing her.
Yes, she moved on, in the realm beyond time, beyond human limitations. That is my grandmother- the woman who taught surrender, who taught freedom and strength without cribbing of those tiny gaps of life. Despite all odds, she portrayed fulfilment.
A chapter of my life ended on the 1st of Jan!