In the Right Place, At the Right Time
While still a student, my mother was taking an interest in Eastern philosophy and yoga. After some years, she joined a group that followed the teachings of a spiritual Master named Sri Ramana Maharshi. They had a very beautiful centre in our little town, Zrenjanin – an old house all arranged in Indian style. I was still a kid then, and, as far as I knew, my mother was just going to yoga three times a week. I remember telling her, as I looked at the photo of Ramana Maharshi that was hanging on the wall in her room, that one could really see that that man was truly good.
At the age of 13 or 14, I was passing through a difficult period. I started noticing a change in my school friends, and something within me was really in pain as I saw them starting smoking, drinking, becoming arrogant adults. Typically, at that age, you try to do everything so that others will accept you, but I found everything so unnatural and unpleasant that I started thinking that something had to be wrong with me. I must have been born at the wrong place and at the wrong time, I thought.
In October 1993 the first lecture on meditation and the teachings of Sri Chinmoy took place in our town. It was divided into three evenings. At that time I was in my first year of high school. My mother asked me if I would come. I said, "OK, why not?" – although not with a great interest.
I came to the second evening. The room was totally filled up with people. I remember the pleasant smell of incense and the predominant blue colour. I found the lecture quite interesting and came the third evening as well.
Then, Tyagananda, the lecturer, gave us a sheet of music – two songs by Sri Chinmoy. First he played them on the tape recorder and then we sang them. When I heard the first notes of the song Usha Bala Elo in the recording, I was completely amazed; how could something that beautiful exist on earth? Guru’s music enchanted me.
Usha Bala Elo, performed by Agnikana's group
Soon after, we had to decide whether we would join Sri Chinmoy’s path. It was not easy for my mom, as she really loved Ramana Maharshi. But on the other hand, she was in need of a living Master and she really felt something in Sri Chinmoy. Eventually she decided to become Sri Chinmoy’s disciple. I gladly joined her. I will never forget these first days at our meditation centre. Finally I felt at home. With such joy I attended every meeting; I would run from school after classes to the Centre to be ready for meditation. And how much delight I was getting from Guru’s songs! That delight remains the same even now.
I realised that actually I was born in the right place, at the right time – a blessing unparalleled!