The Inauguration of the Meditation Hut, March 2009.
On a bright sunny morning after Babaji had performed His morning puja we gathered together to participate in a special event - the inauguration of the new meditation hut in the Ashram grounds. Various items were shared around for people to carry the short distance, and once all was organised we set off with Babaji leading the way.
As we carefully made our way down the path to the bottom of the garden we soon found ourselves struggling to keep a foothold on the loose earth and stones, particularly those who had an item to carry. This is the same path that Babaji (known as Seenu in those days) frequently had to run up and down when His Guru, Swamiji, would hold picnics for His guests on the nearby river bank. All the food and picnic items would need to be prepared and carried up and down the slope, including the hot water. Babaji would happily do this as part of His service to His Guru. We could see that at several points where the slope was particularly difficult concrete had been laid. This was not the case in those days. Fortunately today, with so many people, no-one had to carry much and we all arrived safely at the bottom of the slope outside the hut.
The meditation hut is a small, solid concrete building, painted pure white and dazzling in the sunshine. Situated at the bottom of the garden, the slope shelters it from any sounds from the road that runs past the front of the ashram. It stands amongst the trees, waiting. Beside the doorway, set into the white walls, there is a small black oval granite block. This had been carefully selected and carved in Adivarapupeta, Swamiji's birthplace. On the front a devotee had made a beautiful carving of Swamiji's profile. It now sits beside the entrance blessing all who enter.
Our party of 15 entered and sat on the floor as we watched firstly Babaji install Swamiji's picture and then Rekha Bua installed Babaji's picture. Some gentle chanting was followed by the aaratis being sung by all in harmony and Babaji then cracked open a coconut to be shared amongst us as prasadam along with some sweets, as is the custom in India.
Sitting inside the small building designed for future devotees to meditate in seclusion, I wondered, what would the future bring to this small hut? Who would sit there? How many devotees will make spiritual progress inside those plain, simple walls? Babaji often says, "The future does not yet exist." So, the answers to the questions depends only upon His devotees. The hut still sits there, amongst the trees, quietly waiting for the future to unfold within its walls.