Birthday Speech by Swami Shankarananda
Evening Service, 7.00pm, July 15, 2010 at the Gayathri Peedam in Verulam

Let us chant the Gayathri Mantra collectively, nine times.

Some forty-three years ago, in October of 1967, at only 14 years of age, sitting in a dimly-lit room, I had a great awakening. On that day I saw my divine mentor, my Master, standing naked in front of me. I still hold that image fresh from the experience. During the time of my growing I saw Him three or four times, with the very same message: “You are here on a divine mission”. My first meeting with Him was a great experience, but also frightening.

I lost contact with my Master during my early teens, but some time during my experiences I met another great individual by the name of Nariansamy. Nothing about his physical appearance or habits reminded me of my Master, but his energy was so intense that I felt the presence of my Master. Him too I let go in my teens, enjoying the painful joys of this material life.

I completed my education in electrical engineering, then in 1982 I met yet another great individual, commonly called Brother Haridas. Again, I could not see my Master in him but his energy was so great that I could feel my Master. In 1996, due to some misunderstanding, we parted ways. During 1982 and 1996, a period of 14 years, Brother Haridas, now known as Yogeswara Haridas Acharya, taught me many things on the journey. Brother Haridas also initiated me into the Gayathri Mantra.

In mid 1994 I met another great individual in my astral travels. His name was Gayathri Siddha Swami Murugesu Maharishi and he also did not show any signs of being the master from my 14th year. But his energy just filled my being. I loved this individual very dearly and Swami subtly taught me all that was to be known. After 14 years, Swami took samadhi.

In June 2009 I ventured to Kedernath and Badrinath and there, after forty-three years, I saw my Master. I am convinced now that the master I first saw at the age of fourteen was none other than Swami Murugesu.

Now here I am, entering my 58th birthday and remembering each one of you from my past and your past. Today I tell you that you are not here for me. I am not here for you. But together we are all here for Him. Hari Om