I first came to New York as a disciple in August 1996. I came to the Celebrations and got to meet the disciples from Miami when all the Florida Centres were performing for Guru.
Tilvila very excitedly told Guru that I was from Bengal (the same region of India that Sri Chinmoy was from). Guru looked at me and asked, "What is your last name?" I said, "My last name is Palit." Now in India, by somebody's last name, you can tell which part of the country they're from and their caste and everything else.
Then he asked me, "Where are your parents?" Unfortunately, I had lost my parents about two years, maybe a year and a half prior to becoming a disciple. It was still very raw, very difficult. I remember standing in front of Guru and not wanting to answer that question, but I had to say, "I don't have parents."
I think this was one of the very, very special moments. Guru just paused for a second and I felt love that was thick like butter, engulfing me completely.
Guru said, "I don't have parents too." His love, his concern, his blessings just sort of descended all at once and completely filled me up.
Because I had said my last name was Palit, Guru started speaking about Biren Palit, who was a devotee of Sri Aurobindo at the Ashram in Pondicherry. (Before coming to the West, Sri Chinmoy spent 20 years practising meditation and spiritual discipline in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram). He invited the girls to sing a song called Tomari Hok Joy, which was written by Biren Palit.
He asked me, "Are you related to Biren Palit?" I said no, but I remembered my mother's uncle had been in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram. I said, "But I have a relative, my mother's uncle. His name was Sisir Kumar Ghose. Do you know him?" Then there was a fountain of conversation. It turned out that Sisir Kumar Ghose was like an elder brother, like a mentor for Guru at the Ashram. Guru had so much to say about him. That was my first introduction.
Sisir Kumar Ghosh was a professor in Shantiniketan. Shantiniketan is a university that was created by Rabindranath Tagore, a great Bengali poet and a Nobel laureate. Sisir Kumar Ghosh was a professor of English there, but he was also a great devotee of Sri Aurobindo. Guru would often say he had two homes. In his professional life, Tagore was his Guru, and in his personal life, Sri Aurobindo was his Guru.
Each aspiring heart
Is a special member
Of God’s immediate Family.
Sri Chinmoy 1