Day 137 | 28 May 2015 | From Tippehalli to Udanwadi| The Walk of Hope 2015-16

  • Day 137 starts off from Tippehalli to Udanwadi, Maharashtra
  • The main feature of the Deccan Platueau emerges table top mountains everywhere, Day 137, Miraj-Pandharpur Road, Maharashtra
  • Wait a minute kiddo, Your rotis are on their way, Miraj-Pandharpur Road, Maharashtra
  • Tea break at Junoni, a tete-a-tete with Sri Ajai Kumar Singh, Miraj-Pandharpur Road, Maharashtra
  • Well stocked shops, unfortunately Ghutka holds sway overother items, Miraj-Pandharpur Road, Maharashtra
  • Sri M felicitated at the Gram Panchayat, Udanwadi, Solapur, Maharashtra
  • Walk-of-hope-Day-138
  • Sri M taken on a procession on a cart drawn by gaint bullocks from the Panchayat office to the place of Satsang, Udanwadi, Solapur, Maharashtra
  • Day-138-walk-of-hope
  • Sri M has become a veteran at sporting Phetas, Udanwadi, Solapur, Maharashtra
  • Dad has a read and the daughter a peep at the Padayatra, Hatid, Solapur, Maharashtra
  • Sri M in Satsang at the Udanwadi School, Solapur, Maharashtra
  • Religious amity- Arathi and Padapuja to Sri M in a Muslim household, Udanwadi, Maharashtra
Walk of Hope left Tippehalli, walking towards the east, where the sky was yet to see the rising sun. The walk was to a tiny hamlet called Udanwadi in Solapur district – the third district of Maharashtra. With the prediction of the monsoon breaking in Maharashtra on 29th May, the walkers looked forward to relief from the summer heat!

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Today’s walk covered 18 kms on the state highway. Touching the villages of Junoni and Hatid, they reached Udanwadi a few minutes past noon. The walk, as in the last few days, was extraordinarily difficult. The sun, benign when rising, rages through the day in a clear sky. With bare land and no trees or clouds to provide any shade, they lumber on in the sapping heat. Though the body is exhausted, eyes take in and recognize the unique beauty of the stark lands – vast, barren, wind-swept open lands in varying shades of brown and red as far as the eye can see. There is also an element of surprise when they suddenly come down a stretch to see a patch of green, a farm with a house or two in the middle of this starkness. Their first tea stop for today was at a place which took their breath away. One could see open brown land with rocky outgrowths here and there; and the road snaking it's way through the vast open land. Walking on, the yatris covered quite some distance until breakfast in front of a hotel by the road. After breakfast, as usual, the pace slowed down a bit. The landscape wears a deserted look. The green patches they come across once in a while, are watered by huge thirty-feet wide bore-wells – they are a sight worth seeing. The houses too seem unoccupied; perhaps, the inhabitants are keeping away from the heat. The only signs of life seem to be the domestic animals tied to trees, close to these houses. One gathers that life is tough in these areas with signs of things not having changed over at least five decades. Many of the factories and industries the walkers saw on the way seemed to require repairs. Many more looked abandoned with no life activity around them. They have an air of a ghost-town, living photographs of an age that may once have represented life and prosperity. There’s also a strange play of opposites here – a semi-arid, drought prone area lacking water on one side while they also witness, on the other, lush paddy fields with water being continually piped in from an unseen source. The walkers took many breaks for rest before they reached their halting point. Cutting across a dry field, they reached the Udanwadi School and were assigned their place of rest. The school is run by a Muslim family, offering free education to all children of the area, including tribals. In the evening,the family invited Sri M home and did an ‘arathi’ and a ‘pada-puja’ in a traditional manner. The walkers were put up in large halls, with 8 to 10 people each. With the sun over their heads, the temperatures touched 43 degrees for the first time. Rest in the afternoon was made impossible because the building had a tin roof and even the little breeze there was seemed to fan the heat further. Passing their time, languishing for a few hours like this, they were happy to leave for the Zila Panchayat headquarters in the evening. A hundred odd people had gathered at the office when the padayatris reached there. The gram panchayat and the locals welcomed Sri M and felicitated him. The local community waswarm and hospitable and welcomed the yatris with much love and affection. After the felicitation, they walked towards the school through Udanwadi. Sri M sat in a bullock cart and was taken in a procession to the school. Progressing slowly, they walked for an hour with one stop at a temple where Sri M offered his prayers. They reached the school grounds at 6.30 pmand soon afterwards, he addressed the crowd: “Akhaṇḍa-maṇḍalākāram vyāptamyena carācaram Tatpadam darśitam yenatasmai śrī guravenamah (Which) pervades the entire unbroken form of the circle (of creation), moving and unmoving. To that beautiful and benevolent Guru through whom that state was revealed (to me), salutations. Gurur Brahma Gurur Vishnu Gurur Devo Maheshwara Gurur Sakshat Parabrahma Tasmai Shree Guruvey Namaha The Guru is Brahma(The creator), Lord Vishnu(The preserver, and Lord Shiva (the destroyer) To that very Guru I bow, for He is the Supreme Being, right before my eyes. Om Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah Sarve Santu Nir-Aamayaah Sarve Bhadraanni Pashyantu Maa Kashcid-Duhkha-Bhaag-Bhavet Om Shaantih Shaantih Shaantih Om, May All become Happy, May All be Free from Illness. May All See what is Auspicious, May no one Suffer. Om Peace, Peace, Peace. Loka samasta sukinoh bhavantu May the entire universe be happy” “Namaskar! Addressing the village elders and the people present, Sri M said, “Revered Guruji, I just met Srikant Deshmukhji; Deepak Dada, Dr. ChandakantPandav and all my friends here. I consider you all as my friends, as parts of me and not separate from me. About the Walk, you must have heard that we have started from Kanyakumari and, having covered 2200 kilometers, we have reached your village today. I want to thank you for welcoming us with so much warmth and love. I want to thank Khan Sahib especially who is taking care of all the padayatris. I also thank all the people here - be it man or woman.” “This yatra has 5500 kilometers moreto go. We have come from Kolhapur and we have to walk a lot in Maharashtra. Walking this way, we will go to Swami Akalkot Maharaj’s Samadhi in Akalkot. From there we will go to Pandharpur. Like this, with God’s grace, we will reach Kashmir in April, 2016. What we can do, we are doing.” “I want to tell you why we are doing this yatra. Deshmukh Sahib just told you few things. At the age of 19, I left home and went to Himalayas. I met my Guru, Maheshwar Nath Babaji, there and I traveled to many places in the Himalayas - he used to walk in front of me and I used to follow. I had some spiritual experiences because of what I learnt in those years. Based on these spiritual experiences, I am doing my karma, I am doing my work.” “It was Babaji’s wish that I walk from Kanyakumari to Kashmir and talk to people and explain that you can be from any religion, have any ideology, can be a man or a woman but you are all One, you are all humans. I am not saying this; the ancient Rishis and Munis have said this. You all know that this Maharashtra is a land of saints. Be it a man or a woman, there is a spark of the Supreme Being in the heart of every being. This is called the Atman.” “This means that every being is a walking temple. Why? This is so because, the Lord dwells in the heart. Just as we go to a temple and worship the deity there, one should worship human beings. I bow down to everyone because I know it - he may or he may not know this - that there is a part of the Supreme in his heart. This is why I do pranams to everyone.” “Now, what happens sometimes is that we forget that we are all humans. Not sometimes but many times. We forget in anger. When someone tells us that we are different and have to change, it is not so. If anyone tells you that you are different, do not believe them. Do not forget this. Tell them, we are all born of the mother’s womb, there is no one who has fallen from the sky and all of us will go into this Earth. If that is so, then what is the difference?” “My name maybe different or religion maybe different but I am a human being. We are walking only to spread this message. I do not have any other agenda; I am not going to stand for elections representing any political party. My only message is that, from birth to death, do not forget that we are all humans. When we forget this, there is violence. The parents and children in another’s house are same as the ones in my house too and the pain that they feel is also felt here.” “If we do not forget this and remember that the Supreme Being is inside all beings, then there will be no violence. India is such a nation with people from all faiths - there are Hindus, Christians, Muslims, Jews, Parsis and many others, and they all have lived together. If we live together, India will be strong. We should not forget that we are Indians. If India has to be strong, then we must think about Manav Ekta. If the people of India fight amongst themselves and are fragmented, how will India be strong?” “I was surprised when we went to Khan’s house and the women of the house did pada-puja. What they did was a very rare thing. This is not about religion, this is about humanity. If one thinks that another being is a realised being and there is reverence for him - please, I do not know if I am realised or not - then they do puja and put tilak. This is not about religion but about humanity.” “Here, I found that there are many poor people and few prosperous people. I asked Deshmukhji what people do for a living here. They work here and there, they have farms, a few farm animals and so goes life.” “I want to say that the spiritual experience that I have had, you too can have it. For that, firstly, the mind has to be kept pure. How is that to be done? By understanding that anger, likes and dislikes have to be kept under control. The mind is purified when the dirt is removed, when every other person is taken as one’s own. In this world, there is no other, there is only the humanity. The mind is purified like this. When the mind is purified, then there is peace. When there is peace, God reveals himself. This is my experience.” “If internal purity is needed, external purity is required too. I would like to say to you please keep the environment in your village clean. If the environment is clean, not only is the mind clean but diseases will stay away too. A new program has been started - Swach Bharat - please think about that. If there are not enough toilets, then please think about that. Please come together and attempt to construct many toilets.” “For spiritual progress, it is not required that you close your eyes and sit. Please open your eyes and see what all is required. Only with outer purity can there be inner purity. Many diseases spread if there are not enough toilets; if there are toilets, use them. You must be wondering what kind of a Guru this is, he is talking about toilets. If the village is not clean, the heart will never be clean. They are very closely connected.” “If you need any help, we are ready to give it to you. Start by using the facilities that are there already. It is the responsibility of the young people of the village to think on these things and to act. These days, it is not so difficult to act. The Prime Minister has started ‘Swach Bharat’ scheme, if you go to its offices and ask for help, you will get it. The ones that are there now should be used. I have seen many times that there are toilets that are not used and eventually, they become godowns where people store things.” “Secondly, to purify the mind - you must know this - that people work a lot and get little money. And the little money they earn, they spend on alcohol. It is the responsibility of women that when men come home drunk to not give them food. They drink and they come home, get angry, break things and beat you and the children. Not only in villages, this is the problem everywhere. In villages, they drink ‘sharab’, in cities, they drink rum and whiskey, it is the same thing.” “Here, there are Sants and Sadhus, it is your responsibility that you talk to people and spread this that one can live happily without alcohol too. It is not required. I do not drink, Am I not happy? In reality, if one does not drink, there is more peace. There is less violence. Anger is kept under control.” “It is the responsibility of young people here. You should go to homes and tell people to live well, do not waste your money on these things. In this too, if you require help, we will give it. Dr. Chandrakant Pandav of AIIMS has said that he will spend one month every year working in Maharashtra. I would say to him please start from this village. Come together with the community leaders here, they have a lot of reach and together these things are possible.” “There is a young man here. He studies in a college. He worries about these things. We spoke and he shared this with me.” (Addressing the young man) “Please speak out on this because people will listen.” “So, people should talk about these things. And we are not speaking something that is not useful. If help is required, we will give it to you. If I say something, I do it. I spoke about the padayatra 3 years ago, I am doing it. We are not mad that we are walking 20 to 25 kilometers in the hot sun; we believe that something good is happening. We want to alleviate suffering, we believe that a time will come very soon when India will stand strong. The world is looking; they must understand that we are also developing. Please think about this.” “If you have nothing to do after you come home from work, there is also something else you can get drunk on. It is bhajans and kirtans. Immerse yourself in it and the drunkenness of that is also drunkenness. Just try it. The power of women is such that when they think about this, it will happen. It is because the child is born of a mother’s womb. A child is not born from his father. So, think about this.” “I want to say to you that you may not all walk with us on this padayatra. But, if you cannot walk with your feet, please walk with your mind. How will you do that? After we leave this place, please think on the things that we just spoke about. And whatever is possible, no matter how small or great, please attempt it. If you do it, we will consider it to be as important as this padayatra. It may not be that everybody reaches Srinagar walking with us. If everyone does good work, if you go from home to home and talk on these things, then I think that you are walking with us.” “And, when we leave, if you can walk with us for 10 minutes or an hour, it will be a good thing. When we leave, do not forget that someone came here who said good things and spoke on the things that should be done. It this happens then our padayatra will be successful. We will reach Kashmir, that is a different thing. But, it will be successful if you start working on this now. If you need ideas or you need any support, then you can contact us.” “With this, I will conclude now.” “Om Shanti Shanti Shanti.” “Hari Om Tat Sat”. After the Satsang, the padayatris had dinner under an inky-black starlit sky with dark, thundering rain clouds looming large over the horizon. The yatris retired to bed, as outside a cool breeze blew on a quiet night.


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  1. Well Dressed Beggar says:

    Jai Gurudeva… Jai Maheshwarnath… Jai Kriya Babaji…Jai Sarva Santajana…

  2. Sunil Rajan says:

    it pains me to hear that the yatris are tired. From many miles away, I can only pray for your well being and safety. With our beloved Guru leading this, I am sure everything will be fine!
    Soldier on……
    I am looking forward to joining you in just over 3 wks. Excited!!!
    with prayers
    Hari Om. Sri Gurubhyo Namah.

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