Oh My Godmen!!!

What do you do when you wish to become God but can’t, for obvious reasons?

Simple. You become a godman.

In India, being a godman is like being a celebrity. You enjoy the same amount of popularity. People flock the places that you visit. People acknowledge whatever you say. But what distinguishes a godman from a celebrity is that the former’s job is ageless. The older he/she is, the more respect he/she earns.

I have never been a fan of these godmen, though my wife is a keen devotee of one such self-proclaimed messenger of god. She listens to his “words of wisdom” (that’s how she describes his chatter) religiously at least twice a week, and at the cost of my breakfast. Yeah, she leaves early in the morning to listen to his blabber, while I am left alone in the kitchen trying to figure out where the bread is and where the butter lies.

This particular baba (in India, godmen are called baba; please don’t mistake them for the music band ABBA) is a science graduate who took to this baba business after ‘a god visited him in his dreams and advised to worship god full-time’. And, as a result, we now have this saffron gown-clad, heavily bearded baba arriving in his car, advising people through sermons, accepting donations from them, and then leaving in the same car, but not before having personal discussions with his female disciples (on god knows what topic).

It was a bright Sunday morning. I was quite fresh from my ‘antics in bed’ last night, and my wife, as usual, had gone for the baba’s sermons. I fixed a quick bread toast for myself, and was about to bite into it when my wife popped in.

“You’ve got an appointment,” she said. I checked my teeth all around with my tongue. They weren’t paining. Neither was I having any fever or cold. Then what was this appointment for? Surely not the doctor.

"You are always dragging your feet on all matters. I think there is some problem with your horoscope. I spoke to Swamiji (another respectful title for the same baba) and he is ready to advise you. We are visiting him tomorrow. Make sure you listen to whatever he says," she laid down the guidelines. "When you meet him, first fall at his feet and touch them. He will bless you."

The next day, we were up at 5.30am. No prices for guessing that I had to take a day off from my work to attend this all-important meeting with my wife’s favorite baba. We reached his place well before 7am. I was expecting at least a handful of devotees to be present when we reached there. To my surprise, there was no one. On inquiring with my wife, I realized the baba had given a ‘special appointment’ to her (and, in turn, to me). Finally, the man himself arrived. He was clad in the standard baba attire of saffron color, his beard was longer than his arms, and he walked as slow as an unwell tortoise.  

As soon as he took his seat (you may even call it a throne, because it looked like one), my wife rushed and touched his feet. The baba placed his hand over her head and murmured something, as if telling a secret. Then my wife looked towards me and gestured to come over. I got up and reached the baba’s feet. He again murmured something, but this he kept his hand well over my head. He then asked for my horoscope.

“Hmm.”

“Hmm.”

“Hmm.”

For around three minutes, baba had uttered only three words, and that too the same. I looked at my wife and gave her the what-the-hell-is-he-doing look. “Sshhhhh…he is studying your horoscope,” my wife clarified.

Finally, he spoke.

“Visit Shiva temple twice a week barefooted. Pour milk over his idol and say the mantra that I will give you,” he presented the formula for success. “Do this for three months, and see the change. All your problems will get resolved and you will be able to make decisions faster.”

Then he scribbled something on a piece of paper and handed it over to me. He again kept his hand (well over my head) and offered me a blessing. Then he placed his hand right on top of my wife’s head and again murmured something. Then we left.

I followed baba’s prescription religiously for three months. According to me, I never had any issue with decision making. But my wife thought I was too lousy and needed to be more aggressive. Needless to say, even after three months, my wife’s opinion about me didn’t change, and so she decided to change something else….…..the baba itself!!! Yeah, her friend had enlightened her about a new baba in town, who is reportedly into miracles and solves all problems within few nano-seconds.

It was yet another bright Sunday morning and my wife, as usual, had gone for the (new) baba’s sermons. Suddenly, my cell phone blinked. I picked it up to check out the text message I had received from my wife: Get ready. You are coming to baba’s house within the next one hour.

I jumped out of the bed reluctantly to get ready. Not just for the baba’s meeting but for yet another three-month course of mantras and temple visits.
eyes04111981 eyes04111981
31-35, M
2 Responses May 23, 2012

I truly enjoyed your story and again your sense of humor and ease at story telling. You probably have a book of small stories that could be written to entertain the masses :) It's working here :) It is very sweet the way you cooperate with your wife and her baba demands . lololol .. I'm sure she loves you for that too. I have long loved Indian people and culture and so spending time listening to you and other Indian friends is a special joy to me.

lol, I loved this story .... get your mantra prepared I guess for your next round no? =-D

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