Financial woes at Ashram

Posted By Author on May 17, 2011

31/10/1967:

Got up late as I had cramps in the stomach.  The boiled rice did not suit. Rest.  Bath.  Then with Gobind went to Sukumar for breakfast.  Baba was loitering in the garden.  Message came we all were called.  Again there was no ration in the Ashram.  Worry and stark worry. Baba proposed to sell a piece of land of the Ashram but there was no buyer.  As usual worry and worry not like in the Himalayas of a few but of many Ashramites’ families.  Baba then gave ultimatum to Mohanbabu that he should severe relations with his father in law, as he in advance knew the conspiracy of attacking Ashramites. Baba then dictated the following note to me:

“Ratan has been treated with shoes.  Many more will be likewise treated in future.  It is but natural for the men of the stark ignorance like them to treat the Ashram as enemy number one. Circumstances may necessitate to see to it that they get the most severe punishment but in spite of their regarding you all as their enemy number one, if any of you on your part emotionally regard them as your enemy, you will turn yourself quite unworthy of the Divine cause the Ashram stands for.  In spite of their being worst renegade, so far as the Ashram is concerned they are still your brothers and will remain yourself not to allow the spirit of retaliation to raise its ugly head.  Note clearly that punishment is administered directly or indirectly really for wider good of those who are being punished.  If this ideal is lost sight of and the cautious vigilance, for a day our lookout to smash any attempt by the dormant hostile forces to distort the purified consciousness, is lacking, it will be impossible for you to make any headway with the cause you have embraced as the sole motto of your life.’

I was fed up to listen such things.  In fact it was his attempt to justify his reflex action, which he later realized to be wrong. We were dispersed.  I went with Haribandhu to his joint family.  I did palm reading of eight to ten children.  It was  fun.  Took milk and mudi and returned for rest.  However Baba summoned us all.  He said to Gita that she forced him to start work early and the present precarious condition was reaction of it.  To shift the blame on others was his nature.  Then he said to me that he was going to remain closed for twenty days and therefore there was no restriction on anyone.  Whatever one felt he was free to do so. It was his anger, the whole anger and nothing but the anger.  The hired labourers were sitting outside idle and hungry without prospect of food. All of us were sent out.  I also came out.

It was 2 P.M. No money and no morsel of food. All were fasting.  Out of hunger and resultant drowsiness people were scattered under trees snoozing. Gobind, Parth and I went for a walk along the river.  When returned I was informed that a T.M.O. of rupees nine hundred came from Digboi, Assam.  All of us felt relieved.  Men were rushed for purchase of ration.  Daily need of the ration was of three hundred and fifty people of the Ashram including children and it amounted to rupees five hundred per day and that too for bare subsistence. I could not imagine as to how long poor Ashramities had to be beleaguered with poverty and sustained suffering.

Baba’s warrant came and we assembled in knowing not what snag was in store.  Luckily depression dissolved. He was playing with Chinu.  He then discussed about litigations.  Some note of instructions was given to Gita.  Under the pretext of easing myself I stood up.  Along with me he permitted rest to leave and cautioned to pull on three days.

I returned to take rest but that was not in my fate.  I was summoned by Baba after his early supper.  He excitedly splashed the news, “Suresh do you know?  Kennedy murder is taking a new turn.  It is my firm conviction that the plot was hatched in Washington and a few senators and tycoons were involved in it. The Central Intelligence Agency (C.I.A.) of U.S.A. financed dollars to plotters.”  Again he gave directions about institution of further cases against Ratan and his coterie. He proposed to prosecute concerned magistrate too.  I had to submit and patiently listen to him but inwardly I was restless due to hunger. After a while I returned and had dinner of dal, rice and vegetables.  Gossiped with colleagues and slept.

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