Day 401 | 16 February 2016 |From Kanhei Church to Sai ka Aangan temple | The Walk of Hope 2015-16

  • WOH Day 401 - Kanhei Church to Sai ka Aangan - Gurgaon
    1.WOH-Day-401,-Kanhei-Church-to-Sai-ka-Aangan,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • Donning a pagri for the first time on the Walk - Gurudwara Sadh Sangat
    2.Donning-a-
  • Inside the Gursudwara Sadh Sangat - Gugaon
    3.Inside-the-Gurudwara-Sadh-Sangat,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • Sri M looking every inch a Sardar at Gurudwara Sadh Sangat - Gurgaon
    4.Looking-every-inch-a-
  • 5.Catchy-slogans-about-WOH-held-by-students-of-Bal-Bharati-Public-School,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • Welcome by volunteers of the National Child Labour Project -Gurgaon
    6.Welcome-by-volunteers-of-the-National-Child-Labour-Project,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • Highrises all around Gurgaon
    7.Awesome-highrises-all-around!,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • Welcome by Lioness Club of Sukarma - Sai ka Aangan
    8.Welcome-by-Lioness-Club-of-Sukarma,-Sai-ka-Aangan,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • Tree planting at Sai ka Aangan - Gurgaon
    9.Tree-planting-at-Sai-ka-Aangan,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • A hearty welcome to Sri M at Pathways Worldschool Gurgaon
    10.A-hearty-welcome-to-Sri-M-at-Pathways-Worldschool,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • 11.Doing-what-he-loves-best-on-the-walk,-talking-to-the-young!,-Pathways,-Gurgaon,-Haryana
  • HE Tai Situpa Rinpoche addresses the gathering at Zorba
    12His-Excellency-Tai-Situpa-Rinpoche-addresses-the-gathering-at-Zorba,-Sultanpur,-Delhi
  • Soulful Sufi Music at Zorba Delhi
    13.Soulful-Sufi-music-at-Zorba,-Delhi
  • 14.Satsang-at-an-
Today too, students of several schools like Pathways, Gurgaon, Bal Bharati Public School joined the yatra for a couple of km each.

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The Gurudwara Sadh Sangat warmly welcomed the padayatra. The Raagis sang Kabir Bhajans in dulcet voices and conspicuous among them was 'Aval allah noor upaaiaa kudrat kay sab banday' which Sri M frequently quotes during Satsangs. The facility by which the text of the Bhajan sung is displayed on the wall in Hindi, Punjabi and English made it much easier for everyone assembled to grasp their meaning easily. Sri M and Father Arul Antony of the Kanhei Church were warmly felicitated on the occasion. The Pathways catering team had worked extra hard to serve the yatris breakfast in the wee hours of the day before they left for the walk. The Gurudwara tempted them with surprisingly Southern dishes like idli, dosa and vada and they happily rose to the occasion!! The walk ended at Sai ka Aangan, an exquisite shrine dedicated to Sri Sai Baba of Shirdi. After Arati, tea and snacks were served. It was the turn of Pathways World School Gurgaon to host us for lunch. Before that, Sri M addressed the young students of the school. It is not sure whether all the children could fully make out the import of Sri M's words and the gravity of the matters discussed. But, Sri M is not one who goes for quantity. He would be happy if the message could reach even a handful. Zorba unfolded an ambience the yatris were yet to see so far during the walk. The elegant lawns, tastefully placed lights, flowers, bougainvillea bushes and props lent an ethereal hue to the evening. The snazzy metro trains zipping past, offered a stark contrast. His excellency Tai Situpa Rinpoche, the head of Himachal's Palpung Sherablang monastery who graced the evening's function said "This is a Walk of Hope for Manav Ekta which is one very important activity of Sri M. He is walking for a better future right now. Just do it, right now. He's our example. Next time, I hope I can join for a couple of weeks. Oops! Now I have to do it as I have said it in front of so many people. I hope I can join with Sri M Ji, in the walk. It is good for my body, speech and mind". Sufi songs by Shabda Kahn followed. Kahn sang 'La ilaa ha ill allah ..', transporting the audience to another world. Sri M spoke next and said, "I thank all the guests here, special reference to all the wonderful people who run this beautiful place, Zorba. And to all of you and, of course, to my dear padayatris who have been walking with me. They think probably that the walk is not possible without me, but I think that this walk is not possible without them. After all the wonderful things expressed here, the wonderful music we heard, La-ilaa-ha-ill-allah and the words of Tai Situpa Rimpoche, who never ceases to surprise me because every time he speaks there's something new. And, Lakshmi's beautiful Urdu which I can't imitate (On a lighter note) There's a little Malayalam accent somewhere, doesn't matter.. That's fine. Like the Rinpoche said, I walk the talk, he talks the walk. I must start by telling you a little story about St. Francis of Assisi who loved to walk with his followers." He then recounted the story where St Francis tells his disciples, "My walk is my talk". Continuing, he said, "I'm sorry I'm quoting you again and again (to Rinpoche), like when the Buddha inside is awake we like to repeat the words. This comes out of the divine which is in every heart. In some, it manifests a little more and, in some, it manifests a little less but it's nevertheless there in all human hearts. It's also my experience that the Ultimate Supreme Reality - a spark of that reality resides in every heart of every living being and manifests consciously in human beings and, of course in all living beings. And, as one's Karmas improve and as one progresses, it becomes more and more manifest. Therefore, this walk is just a manifestation of that. I shouldn't be saying this but the organisers break their heads everyday and they come to me with problems, sometimes I tell them to pack up and go. But they never go because the spark inside burns brightly in all of us all the time, it never goes off. So I fan the flame and set it on fire. This is a kind of fire that we set up, it's a madness. Believe me, in some parts of India where we were walking, somebody said this man is a completely crazy coot who is walking, in this jet age." Sri M referred to Anna Hazare's comment in this context that one has to be mad to undertake a walk like this. Sri M added, "If sanity has brought us to a state like this, I think insanity is better than sanity. The spiritual understanding at the core of our consciousness is not a very logical affair, because our logic is very limited as it is based on our five senses. You can't put it in your usual logical cubbyhole and say 'Ah! this is what it is'. If you couldn't, it would not be infinite. It comes out of a certain drinking of wine, a drunkenness which is a blessed drunkenness, not the other one which spoils your liver! A great Sufi once said, 'Akhal Ke Madarase Se Uth', it means get up, don't be schooled at schools where you learn of your intellect. Intelligence is required, I understand, otherwise you won't get up from the school of intellect. The next is pretty much like what Mr Shabda Khan sang, 'Ishq ke maikhade mein aa', come to the tavern of ishq. Now, I don't know how to translate Ishq. Ishq is love which cannot be understood, you cannot define it. It's like, when you've had two pegs of stiff single malt, you don't know what happens. I'm not doing it, I can feel others sometimes. So that burning desire to lose oneself and become nothing. The Arabic word 'la' is a negation, it means No. If you go to a bazaar and see Arabs bargaining, 'la, la, no, no'. When you say 'la' which is negation, it is very close to (I'm sorry if I'm mistaken), what the Buddhists call 'shoonya'. Shoonya isn't Nothing. It is that from which everything came. And which cannot be defined by everything that came out of it, therefore shoonya. It isn't nothing, it is nothingness. It is like misunderstanding Nirvana. People say Nirvana is snuffing out of the flame. If you snuff out the flame and become unconscious, do you think people do all this meditation to become unconscious? Nirvana is to be free of those desires that bind us to selfishness, and when we are released of that, the whole world is ours. There's nothing different, we are free. So 'Akhal Ke Madarase Se Uth, Ishq ke maikhade mein aa' – Get out of the school of intellect, come into the tavern of inspiration or drunkenness. 'Jaam e fanaa, bekhudi ab to piya' - Now that you have drunk the wine, of total destruction, in fact the Sufis call the truth ‘fanaa’, everything else is gone, only the 'haq', remains. Only the truth remains. 'Jaam e fanaa bekhudi', it's sometimes loosely translated as carelessness, that's not the meaning, it means, be-khud-i, no khud, so self, no ego, 'ab tho piya'. Now what? 'Jo ho, so ho', let whatever happens happen. This is the idea with which we've started the walk. Believe me, good things have happened. Why, because I believe there's a Supreme Energy which looks after all these things even though we don't believe it exists sometimes. But it exists and it works through our hearts. And it works through every heart. This is the Walk. You've seen the film, you've gone through the literature. There are many difficulties that I have gone through myself, leg pain, knee pain, viral fever, several obstacles - physical and mental. Like two people don't want to share a room, so I have to go there and sort it out. Somebody says, 'He's hiding a knife, I don't know what he's going to do?'. He says he uses it to cut tomatoes. So there are problems that we sort out and we carry on. But the basic link is the spiritual link that connects all of us together. Please don't think that only the walkers are connected together. All of us. Now this is the walk for you to see. We still have another 2000 Km to go. Some people think that it's good to think of the good things that happen. Sometimes, it’s also good to think of the bad things that could happen. So, you are prepared. We are ready to move forward. Hopefully, in the first week of May, we will reach Srinagar. I said hopefully because we have to walk from Jammu to Srinagar. There have been several warnings from different sources, but I think we will go. I'll tell you the reason why. The reason is, I know that all of you cannot walk with us. I'm very happy that Rinpoche decided to walk with us from Pathankot, at least for 15 Km or 15 Mins, as he said. He thinks he knows me for long. I've also suspected and feel I have known him for long although we met only two years ago. Now, it's not a good idea to dwell into these matters in public. I remember at Sherwoling Monastry, we were having breakfast. We were happily sitting at the table, when some ladies came (I'm not saying anything against ladies) and pulled a chair and sat around us. The first question to Rinpoche, 'Since you are a reincarnated Lama, how many past lives do you remember?' I want to tell you his answer, ‘Actually, I don't remember what I had for breakfast yesterday’. These things are not discussed over breakfast tables. These are very serious matters, which have a different dimension altogether but nevertheless I know there is a link. Maybe, eventually, we will figure out, I don't know. Anyway this is the walk, this is the talk. And I know that you won't be able to walk with me till Srinagar. But I know why I say this walk will succeed because I feel that all of you who are not walking, if your minds are also with us, if you feel that very sincerely, (Lakshmi has not been walking; only here and there in Kerala), but I know that her mind is with us. All of you I'm sure are there with us, with the walk, with M. Since M actually means the first letter of Manav, or Manushya which means, a human being, there is not one M. We are all Ms, we are all Manav, we are all human beings. So when you put your mind to this and support us, it is a terrific energy. Therefore, seeing you and the attention you are giving to me and the love and affection you have for us, for the walk, I assure you that the walk has already become successful even before reaching Srinagar. Thank you very much. It's a beautiful evening. Much more thanks to the wonderful people who run Zorba and the wonderful way it's maintained, like a monastery in the Himalayas or somewhere, except when you see the metro. Thank you once again. As the principal of the walk, I'd like to say Namaskar, then I'd like to say Salaam Alaikum, then I'd like to say Sat Sri Akal, then I'd like to bow down, and like the Jews say Shalom, I bow down to all of you individually and collectively. And once more pray that you keep your minds with the walk, thank you very much, Namaskar." After the talk by Sri M, next in line was Zoya - the music band that played its brand of delightful fusion music late into the evening, bringing the curtains down on a event filled day.

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