Swami Satyananda moulded me with his presence, his inspiration and his endless wisdom. After being with him I believed that Saint Francis of Assisi had existed, and that it is possible to attain expanded dimensions in our lives. Sri Swamiji was a complete being. My perception always told me that he was the same as God, moving in a little human body on this planet. He touched me so deeply, that not only did he play the role of my guru, but he was also my father, my mother, my best friend and my greatest source of inspiration. He was a very down to earth and practical person, but at the same time he was living in the highest states of consciousness.
I have many experiences with Swami Satyananda and these few words will not be enough to contain them all. I will share some of these powerful moments that have shaped my life. While working with him he would give me many hints about the direction of my life. Each time I made a mistake he would call me and then advise me with so much love and compassion. In that way he taught me how not to judge others, about humility, selflessness and so many other aspects of life. He also taught me a lot about concentration and awareness.
Once I worked with him to make a fence. He stood in front of me holding each pole with his hands and ordered me to hit it at the top with a huge hammer. I was afraid, as his hands were right there, but he insisted that I go ahead and told me to look carefully. My whole body became electric with fear. We went on with this karma yoga for some hours. This experience took away a great deal of my lack of concentration and helped me later on in life.
I feel that Sri Swamiji gave me the capacity to gradually understand him more as the Spirit, rather than a limited human being. Once he came to me and touched the centre of my chest with his right hand’s index finger and said, “This man that you see in front of you is not the real me, if you want to find the real me, you have to go there.”
I cannot believe that such big part of my life was in his company. On another occasion, as he spent hours teaching me how to organize a kitchen store, he spoke of his final departure. He said, “I will choose the date, a place somewhere here in Rikhia and the method, and I will do it for the glory of all of you. I will sit cross-legged and I will drop this body at will, in the same way you drop your dhotis after using them.” And this is exactly what he did, choosing to depart as a Mahayogi.