It was summer of 1992. I was working in London Hospital during my training living in Hanvel near Ealing I was planning to visit my Friend Jawaher Gandhi for long, who was a well known Astrologer and Palmist in the city of London among Asian as well as West Indian and English population. It was his father who had started this as supplemental income in 1957 as Jawahar did not complete his schooling learned astrology from his father who had made fortune out of it as there was lot of Indian population.
Since it was Sunday called him and decided to meet in late afternoon. I drove to hanger lane where his office was located in one of semi detached row houses. Being Sunday there were quite few people to see him, I was asked by Indian receptionist to come to basement Library and wait. As I was looking at neatly arranged book shelf, while waiting I decided to browse through collection of books mainly by his father Fiction, Detective, Astrology, English classic not much interest to me. At last shelf in corner a book attracted my attention as though like a magnet. My hands grabbed it and so on cover page picture of Paramhansa Yogananda ji it was Autobiography of Yogi. Instantly I decided to borrow it. When he got free I was called up to his office I went up with the book, after few greetings we chatted about family friends over cup of Tea and at end of almost an hour I decided to leave as one more client was waiting for him, I politely asked if I could borrow the book existence of which he was not even aware he said why borrow I could have it. It was my LUCKY DAY. As I reached home I couldn’t resist and started to read just didn’t want to stop and managed to complete in a few days with my hospital duties. Most striking personality that caught my attention was BABAJI. Since then my life started to change gradually. Very few even knew about Babaji then.
In 1996 we moved to Abudhabi still with strong imprint of great masters and the book as swamiji has mentioned this book will change your life as it carried his vibes.
From 1992-96 I was unknowingly carried away from my fast life and parties. Got introduced to Vedanta, Bhagvat Geeta Upanishad also wrote to Ranchi Ashram. Late 1999 few friends of mine from top brass asked me if I could join them in buying land near pune 119 acres which I agreed and without seeing kept sending my share, when I visited in 2001 was bit disappointed with land as it had no proper road, water, electriciy. Anyway I was already committed. In 2007 I permanently returned to India in almost retirement mode. All of us friends got together and decided to develop the land starting with 2km access road which I manage to complete in 18 months, with 5 small culverts. During this time I was always thinking of putting it to good use which may help surrounding villages and bring some spiritual and monetary prosperity. Lot of them suggested to make plots and sell it as farm house plots which I was very much against.
Early 2008 I saw small ad of Swami Kriyananda visiting pune and public lecture on same day. Kriyanandaji was Shri Yoganandajis foremost disciple in USA a very fortunate soul who was blessed by Guruji. I was not to miss this opportunity at any cost. And the day arrived I was one of the early birds in auditorium. Most of the prominent disciples gave introductory speeches at last Swami Kriyananda took the stage I was so impressed and touched, a smiling face and loving voice. At the end of lecture he announced that Ananda Sangha was looking for a land around pune, 100 acres. End of the speech I met one of volunteers and said I would like to help them find land he softly replied one Mr.Amol is in charge of it and he is from Pune. Promptly I met him not knowing this relationship is going to last for ever. He gave me feed back. After few days in our meeting I mentioned about our land at Watunde but it was not flat land and it was in a valley, also we could only gather some 33 acres only. Amolji showed interest in having a looks was not sure it would be enough. but Amol and Dharmadas did visit and climbed all the way to the top and meditated for quite some time. In few days to my surprise Amol called and said they liked the place.
They sent the photos of the Land to Kriyanandji and seemingly he approved of the land just looking at the photos. Soon I was invited to Ashram in Delhi Gurgaon to meet Kriyanandji to finalize the deal. During my stay at ASHRAM in Delhi, I was called to meet him in his Bungalow. To my surprise he spent almost hour and half with me it was really a divine experience. I returned to Pune and I was on cloud 9 as first ashram of Babaji and Paramhansa Yoganandji was to be in our land what more one could ask to almighty.
I consider very fortune to be associated with this venture for last 10 yrs, Now Amol and like minded kriyabans have taken the challenge to run the holy place.
A seed that the great Masters sowed long time ago is now flourishing in the ashram area. May many souls visit the place and feel the vibrations of the great Masters.
I wish them all divine blessings to flourish and make one of best center of KRIYA YOGA. I bow to the Leela of Babaji in fulfilling my dream. I am sure all you young Kriyabans will spread the Divine Message of Babaji in years to come. I will always be there playing my small role. JAI GURU.
Dr Prafulla Wani