,In the year 1907, at [ the age of ] twenty-two, he [ Markand - The Founder of Mai-ism ] had the most calamitous, and yet the final hardest, hammer under which he would have succumbed, but for Mother's Grace.
He happened to read Yoga-Vasistha योगवसिष्ठ and Vedantism वेदान्त , that terrible teaching of "AHAM BRAHMA ASMI ", and his head turned. His intellect got clouded with the controversy of the new teaching. He thought he was all along under a delusion and pitiable victim of a huge cheat by MATAJI, the Maya deity. He threw away his deities, picture, scriptural Sapthasati सप्तशती , wooden seat, worshipping materials and vessels in the river Mula-Mutha-Sangam,[ Poona - Pune City मुळा-मुठा संगम, पुणे शहर,] behind his living place. He changed his course from devotion (Bhakti भक्ती ) to Divine Knowledge (Jnana ज्ञान ). He began repeating "AHAM BRAHMA ASMI" अहं ब्रह्मास्मी day and night, and interviewed so many religious teachers on the subject.
The young boy had never had to pass through a more terrible time. He experienced that, as a result of his faithless desertion of Mother, the whole world had changed to be worse or him. Even his best friends and relations disliked, displeased and deserted him. No solace, no consoling word, no happy night, no soothing idea, no kind relative, no pleasure, no relieving feature, no miraculous powers, no happy meditations, no devotional effusions, no good lucks. The whole world was, as it were, spitting on him with a contempt on dethronement. He could not bear, undergo and survive the punishments of the change. The disastrous results were much more terrible than can be described.
His morality, goodness, character, religiosity all stood before him, threatening him with leaving him as a corpse. the fire of ill-treatment of the world, his own self-contempt on gold of his self turning to base brass, and the scorching in the hot furnace of repentance as a result of having deserted Mother's protection, the contrast of his faculties before and after, all led him to the highest desperation.
One day, in Petlad ( Gujaraath ) पेटलद , he tore off his garments and sacred-thread, threw off his shirt and dhoti and cap in the street and ran away from the house as one determined to mend or end his life, to be a Sanyasin संन्यासी , or to commit suicide. What might have been the climax of his sorrow, disappointment and disgust of life and world, at twenty-two, can be better imagined than described.
He was however caught by his most revered father who ran after him with all the force he can command in the street, weeping and shouting on losing his son, and by his mother, weeping and madly running after the father. He was brought home and kept confined in a room for a week and greatly smoothened and solaced by the parents. After a promise not to be a Sanyasin, he was permitted to return to Poona [ Pune ] for studies. His mother with tears in her eyes said, "You have never been telling a lie. You never break your promise. If you are determined to be a Sanyasin, first stab me and then go. If you wish that I may live, promise me, you will not leave home."
It was this promise the remembrance of which, along with the whole scene and accident, was fresh in the Founder's mind for years together, which after so many oscillations, did not leave him undisturbed and easy, whenever he got the idea of taking Sannyasa संन्यास , especially when he was possessed with the idea, that was necessary and perhaps indispensable for the intense propaganda of Mai-ism. That is so for the main reason that it is mostly the brown robe and the tonsured head that sets religious Hindus a-thinking most seriously, concentratedly, reverentially and sympathetically, on the subject of Religion and Religious Reformation. There was often such a violent tug and pull from both sides with their respective battalions of pros and cons, that he was unable to decide what was best, in the interest of his mission. The Founder then satisfied himself with leaving matters to take place as Mother finally willed and with the remembrance of the incident and the promise he had given to his dearest mother, years before.
One idea alone, about his greatest ungratefulness to the Mother who had been protecting him all along, and without whose protection what the world would be to him, he had experienced and realized, that one monomania seized him. This one idea acted like the most violent attack of an unbearable shock. He decided to drown in the very same river unless Mother reaccepted him. In the midst of the excruciating pains he got an imaginary idea like a lightning in the darkest cloudy night, "Will not Mother save me? Will She not tell me She has reaccepted me?". All this was a matter of few hours, before determination and preparation for action. He went to commit suicide in the river.
He ran towards the river water depth with a speed which he had never before used. Just then, he was caught in the sweetest trans -heavenly Embrace of Mother - The Visible, The Infatuatingly Beautiful Mother. She admonished him strongly never to be so reckless and senseless in future and assured him he was never disowned by Her, although his head had turned. Not only that, but She told him, She was carrying him through certain experiences, which were indispensable.
Mother knew his fickle-mindedness and did the preventive needful. Retracing to his room, he expressed to himself, though most stealthily, wishing none to know it, not even his own mind to hear him, his inmost suspicion, (the devil of a suspicion), which proved his greatest ungratefulness even after Mother had been merciful enough by saving him from committing suicide.
He asked to himself, "What did I see?, What did I hear?". Is this all not a mental derangement? Is this all not a false vision because of a mental despair? (This Maya-created doubting, though most temporary, does not leave even the highest man till he attains salvation). Mother had anticipated this and She had kept the answer ready to convince him of Her embrace and Her Word and Her Promise.
Most surprisingly, on opening the room, he saw the very same deity picture, the very same scriptural book of Saptashati सप्तशती , the very same wooden seat, the very same worshipping articles at the very same place as they were and where they were before, the very same things which he had thrown away in the river with contempt, about six weeks before.
From this moment onwards, he linked himself with and riveted himself to the Mother. His conception then was a Hinduistic one, viz., that of Power (Shakti शक्ती ) although with the additional personally secured concessional advantage of Mother's protection to him as Her son. That was however just as a lioness has her love to her cub though not without devouring ferocity. He had no special attachment to a particular aspect of Hindu Mataji माताजी as Amba अम्बा , Kali काली , Bahucharajee बहुचराजी , Chamunda चामुण्डा or Bhawani भवानी . They were not different realities to him even then. As his final conclusion then went, these were only different names and forms of one and the same reality of MATAJI, Shakti (Power), the final most Power (Shakti), assuming different situations, different goals and different purposes. The word " Mataji ", apparently meaning " Mother " was however to him, an honorific name for a feminine sex deity, with no conception of a mother-and-child relationship for one and all devotees. In a word, he had not risen above the centuries-old Hindu Shakti conception, and had absolutely no conception of Mai. The form that he saw as embracing him had nothing special to characterise Her as any of these five aspects. She was not in any of Her above adopted forms. She had human-like only two arms and no weapons.
The dazzling light and crown halo around the celestial face, with the forward spreading glamour (as of a searchlight) was there. She was in Her Natural form, of the whole Universe-running-Divine-Mother, a burnished gold-coloured Divine fascinating Female Figure, which immediately convinced him about who She was.
EXTRACT FROM THE BOOK : MAI-ISM
AUTHOR : MAI SWARUP MAI MARKAND
MAI NIWAS, SARASWATI ROAD END, SANTA CRUZ WEST, MUMBAI 400054 INDIA