19 February, 1995 – Thundering Jaap Sahib


Maharaj has said several times, with his special look, that he wants only tapasya (renunciate spiritual practice) for his birthday celebration. So Jaap Sahib recitation continues for three hours each morning, then again in the afternoon, again in the evening, and one paath each night when Bhagat Ji and I sit in the havan.

That voice that appeared several days ago continues to issue from my mouth, at pitches far beyond my normal range, for hours at a time, and yet my voice feels no strain. At times it rings through the air like a sword, at times it is clear and full of the ecstasy of love.

Yesterday Maharaj began replying to us in the havan. As the intensity of Jaap Sahib increased, a wind came up—out of the previously clear blue cloudless sky—and with it, thunder. I had been sad that I had nothing to offer Maharaj for his birthday, and it occurred to me that I could offer til (black sesame seed) to Him in the havan. At first I thought I would take His permission to do so with Jap Sahib, but the urge grew stronger and stronger, so I just jumped up while reciting, filled a tray with til from the sack, and started throwing it in the fire to punctuate the affirmations of God’s Power with exclamation marks. As that continued and Jaap Sahib became more intense, the wind increased and thunder rumbled, and a great firestorm of ash and burning coals rained down upon us from the ceiling of the havan.  We kept it up, and the response increased. Everyone helped in bringing more til and also pouring on ghee and samagri  (dry mixture of dried fruits, grains, and spices) while Jaap Sahib recitations continued. There was so much soot pouring down on us that people began cleaning the havan as Jaap Sahib continued, coming very close to the intense and roaring fire. Whenever we would slack off a bit, the wind would die down and the thunder abate. When the intensity of paath and havan increased, so did the wind and rumbling thunder. I was feeling intense happiness at the Presence of God’s Power among us.

What is Jaap Sahib? Yesterday it was a battle cry, a proclamation of God’s victory, a love song.

When we at last stopped, so did the wind and thunder. The day was as innocently clear and blue as before.