The Mystique of ‘M’
He woke up next morning, energised and in the grip of an ecstatic mood that stayed with him during the whole of his stay in the region. He says, “The presence of highly evolved souls is almost palpable in these areas. It was so palpable, I even hoped that I would be meeting some of them.”
Though M made light of his physical discomforts, they were miraculously relieved by the arrival of a brahmachari he had met in the Divine Life Society. This acquaintance had been an intrepid pilgrim and his many pilgrimages had taught him to be resourceful. Soon, he found for M an independent kutir, a couple of blankets—even a wooden plank to sleep on. (Recalling it, M laughs, “Five-star luxury”.) Above all, he arranged with the Nepali dharmashala to provide food for M. Thanks to the same benefactor, M came to know the rawalji (the chief priest of Badrinath) as well.
As is any pilgrim-centre, so is Badrinath, M reminisces. There were all kinds of people congregating there. Many beggars have made it a place for earning their living. For them the saffrom robe is nothing more than an insignia—a licence—to beg. Even some sadhus, apparently a cut above the beggars, stole each other’s kamandalus and blankets. Perhaps, ‘M’ concludes, such goings on might have the sanction of perverted logic: can anyone in a spiritual democracy be the undisputed possessor of anything?’ Genuine yogis and param-ahamsas too existed among such as melange; some were indifferent to whom they consorted with; others deliberately mingled with the throng perhaps, in utter acceptance of the world as it is.