This is a story about the mystery and miracle of Bhagawan. I am an American attending the University of Madras. Some days ago, a classmate and myself went to the Kapaleeshwarar Temple here in Madras. After one passes through the huge gate of the outer temple walls, one's attention is attracted to the various signs which say `Non Hindus not allowed'. I had heard about such signs, but in all the years that I have been in India, I had never encountered one. I told my friend to go on inside and that I would wait outside. Soon thereafter, an old man approached me. He said, "Please do not feel offended nor think badly of these people. This is merely the custom here." As I silently held my peace, he went away. I began to talk to Baba in my mind thus: "Will this custom prevail forever? You, Yourself are Siva and though I've come to have Your Darshan, I'm forbidden to enter inside. Is not the Lord everyone's"?

As I was mentally conversing with Swami thus another old man came up to me and said, "Come". My righteous pride rose up and I remained where I was. Twice again he repeated—"Come". So I followed him inside. As we began to circumambulate the Holy of Holies, he moved his hand and it was full of Vibhuti. He smeared it all over my forehead and then reached over to a Goddess carved into the rock and removed some kumkum which he also applied. We continued around and as we approached Lord Kapaleeshwarar he said, "Look". I beheld the Linga to my satisfaction and then he led me to the consort of Lord Kapaleeshwarar for Her Darshan. Then he said, "Now, go."

The next day I was on my way to Puttaparthi. Here is the mystery. Baba enquired if I had enjoyed the Darshan! Some people call `this' the miracle—this transcendence of space and time. But to me the real miracle lies in His infinite care. As quickly as one turns towards Him, He is there with His compassion ready to respond. Such a small, simple act and yet to me it represented His greatest miracle of all—His Love.

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