To Believe or Not to Believe - 3


Such experiences of mine, however, should not make one conclude that everything published in the field of the paranormal could not be believed. I have a number of experiences, which have put faith into me that certain paranormal cannot be brushed aside.

Nearly twenty years ago, I read the "Autobiography of A Yogi" by Paramhansa Yogananda and I was in great doubt about the authenticity of the facts narrated therein. The book made mention of several miracles that had taken place in his life. There was no way of knowing if the published book was an actual biography or someone had used his imagination to make an interesting reading, making it a dollar earning project. I, therefore, prayed to God, to show me light, if such miracles, as narrated in the book, were at all possible. At this point, something very strange happened. A sadhu (an Indian mendicant) approached my car and, unsolicited, showed me a few miracles. He said to me that I had a worry on my mind, which I flatly denied, as I had no worry.

Temperamentally, I have always held the view that whatever I have is much more than I deserve and whatever I don't have, I do not deserve. So why should I have any worry?

Yet the sadhu repeatedly insisted and finally asked me to give him a piece of paper. To get rid of him, I pulled out a piece of paper from my pocket and gave it to him. He took it and in my presence, made a packet and put into it a nut taken out of his bag. The packet was handed to me and I was asked to open it. And lo! what I found on opening the packet were a few flower petals instead of the nut. Was it a miracle? Or it was a sleight of hand. Lots of magicians show such tricks. So what, if he did so? But the timing of the whole event was indeed a wonder. To be shown a miracle when I was praying for it was really a strange coincidence. Was he God who had come to show me the miracle in answer to my prayers?

I was under this spell when he asked me for a payment of Rs 25.00 Well so he couldn't be God. God doesn't ask money from people. Yet he did fulfill my desire (of seeing a miracle) when I asked for it. This man must be a messenger of God then. In such state of my mind I told him that I would pay him the amount but as I did not have the money with me, he should come with me to my house. I opened the door of my car to let him in. As soon as he sat beside me, he caught hold of my hand and touched it to his hair. Immediately his sand dry hair, which were all matted, became soaking wet as if he had come after a bath. Water was dripping down on the upholstery making it wet. Now this was absolutely beyond me. Was I dreaming? Or was it a reality? This definitely could not be a sleight of hand and positively comes under the category of a miracle. To witness two miracles within such a short period was in itself a miracle. Thus this incident brought me the faith in the happenings of the paranormal. It also convinced me in the genuineness of the Autobiography of a Yogi, and that whatever was mentioned in it was not a figment of imagination or a dollar earning project. Yet I do often wonder whether this occurrence ' my praying to God, the sadhu coming and showing me the miracle ' were not a mere coincidence? Who can tell?

I also believe in the book, 'The Search of a Soul - Taylor Caldwell's Psychic Lives' by Jess Stearn, another non-fiction book, in which Taylor Caldwell was said to have been regressed to her past lives (reincarnation). It is interesting to note that in the epilogue of the book, Taylor Caldwell talks of her grand son, when only three or four years old, used to insist that he had been born and had lived in India, babbled about his wife and children there, and all about Bombay, and he was begging his parents to take him to India to "find" "his people". Still she denies reincarnation in the following words:

I have no explanations for the material in this book. Nor, perhaps, will others, except confirmed reincarnationists, who probably find their present life so intolerable - as I did - that they look forward to a better one in a better world. This is my disclaimer; I do not believe in reincarnation. I see no actual proof of it. I have thought that I have seen "ghosts" on many occasions, I admit, and have deluded myself that I have spoken to them. I do not believe in ESP (extra sensory perception), but I believe it is a faculty of the human brain which will; soon be revealed and used ' a human faculty humanity has almost lost. (I converse with my dog through ESP). I do not believe it is an attribute of the "soul". Nor is it occult or mysterious. It is an electrical impulse of the brain which perishes with all else at death.

Being an illustrious person, this statement of hers will go on record for all times, and will be debated and argued by researchers in future to prove their theories one way or the other. Confirmed reincarnationists will find the statement in their support while those opposed will take it otherwise. All this shows the difficulties that arise in establishing any truth after separating it from all falsehood.

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