For some inexplicable reason, Shri Nathji had shut his spiritual light off in London. Perhaps the time was not yet ripe for the British nation to recognise God. Perhaps they were like the children who were not hungry and were engaged in playing with the toys their mother had provided them with. God was in the midst of them in the form of Shri Nathji. With characteristic British reserve they would stare at him, with lowered eyes.
God in Piccadilly Circus. God, feeding the pigeons at Trafalgar Square. God riding in the underground tube. God riding in a double-decker bus. God visiting the lights of Blackpool. God walking through the corridors of Windsor Castle. God reflecting over the waters of the Thames. God at the Tower of London, viewing the Kohinoor Diamond. God at London Bridge. God adjusting his watch according to Big Ben. Little did the city of London know that God had come into its lanes and streets as a tourist.
With the majesty of Shri Nathji’s looks, his radiant personality, his royal dress, and the magic flow of his words, he could have taken London by storm. But for some reason known only to him, he chose to isolate himself in his room and lead a life of absolute solitude.
It was as if Shri Nathji’s had taken upon himself a vanvaas–an exile–as if he had banished himself from the current of humanity around him. His work went on in silence, of course. He blessed London from his room.
Perhaps, his vibrations were going out towards the people of India who had become like orphaned children ever since he had left. Living in one of the busiest cities in the world, Shri Nathji was leading the life of a recluse.
And Shri Nathji would say:
Chhorro mujhe bekhud meraa aaraam yehi hai
Be naamo nishaan raihne do bas naam yehi hai
Leave me alone, in Self-forgetfulness, this is my only peace,
Let me be without a name–that is my only name,
He would speak of the period of solitude in the life of Shri Babaji Maharaj, when he had lived in one room for thirty-two years without emerging.
Babaji Maharaj, why don’t you go for a walk into the garden outside? his devotees would say.
Only the sick need the walk of a garden, Shri Babaji Maharaj would reply, and I am not sick. But there is a garden in which I walk all the time. It is the garden of solitude within my heart.
Shri Babaji Maharaj would often say this verse in Persian:
Andeshaye khaar ast dareen saire gulistaan
Dar khilvate dil gulshane bekhaar babeened
There is the fear of thorns in the gardens of the world,
But in the garden of solitude within the heart there are no thorns.
One reason for this quiet period in Shri Nathji’s life might have been that he was, in reality, somewhere else in the remote infinity of his Universe, tending to problems there, redeeming lost souls wherever they existed.
It was very likely that he was present in all corners of the Universe in human form. After all, it was not only this little earth that needed salvation–the entire Universe craved for it.