I had the fortune of sitting with my grandfather.
My mother’s father only taught me this spiritual routine. He is the one solely responsible for whatever revival I am doing through the deity worship. He is solely responsible! I have seen, he may come back from the shop night one o’clock. He was a rice merchant. So, the rice loads will come from the villages in the bullock carts. Those days, bullock carts. And, lorries were not that popular. I have seen, bullock carts will come with the fire torch, or the lantern lamp and they will unload the rice bags. Night one o’clock, he may come back to the house, but he will wash himself, do the “achamana”, apply the vibhooti, and “anushtana” and keep the shop key at the feet of Mahadeva. He had a beautiful family deity: Mahadeva, Ganesha, and other two-three deities like Nandi, small Subramanya, and Devi, one Surya. It is a “panchayathana”, Shiva “panchayathana”. With Vishnu also, ranganatha, and Venkateshwara. Venkateshwara was also the family deity. So, all of them were there. He will always keep the key to them, at the feet of Mahadeva, and go and sleep.
My mother’s side is so highly cultured. My mother’s father is such a spiritual man. Even on the day he died, he was 90 he did his puja, went to hospital and died! I have never seen him miss it – cold, cough, family reasons, nothing will make him miss it.
I know the kind of a faith about his own body and mind and consciousness that my grandfather used to have! My grandfather, he died after nineties. In his whole life he got hospitalized only twice! Only twice! Such a hardworking man! The kind of faith he had about his own body! It is a mechanism, please understand. It is actually a mechanism. What you cognize about your body, your mind, you, it is a mechanism. Whatever you cognize becomes reality. And I have seen the faith he had about himself. I am so thankful to him, because, he took care that the idea of sickness that it never settles inside my system. By seeing him and living around him, health became my basic cognition.
Whatever time he may come back to bed, next day morning he will be up before the sunrise; it is called “brahma muhurtha”, the time a Shaivite is supposed to wake up. I have never seen him missing till the day he left the body! He will wake up before the sunrise, the “brahma muhurtha”, and take bath, do all his “anushtana”, come back to the deity, and do all his morning worship. Even when he has to go to some program at 5 o clock. He will get up at 3, he will finish up everything before that. and he will do long rituals – long pranayamas, and 11 times super brain yoga for Ganeshaand 11 times for Shiva. All these deities will be there. When he finishes, I will move the deity from this side to the other for accounts purpose that is done with that deity.
After puja he will pick up the key from the deity with the permission, and go to the shop. Every time, when he took the major decisions, or every time he leaves the house for even a small action like going to the local temple and coming back, he will go and take the permission of the deity and then go. Once he comes back, he will wash his feet. If he comes back from the temple, he may not wash his feet. If he is from any other place, he will just go to the shrine again, means where the family deities were kept. Unless he is coming back from the temple, he will wash the feet, then he will walk to the deity, and do namaskar, respond to them, or report to them what he has done. Only then he will continue with the other activities.
I tell you, just this one seed at my age back then! For around 82 years, not a single day he missed the morning puja. I don’t know whether he had the idea of enlightenment or anything but his sincerity, just such an amazing sincerity, has gone into my head. That has gone into my system. I remember early morning unless you come and sit in front of his puja, I will not feel that day is going smooth. Anything happens- if I lose my pencil or pen I will think, “Today I did not attend the puja.” So it was life and after some time because the very inner self was enjoying it becomes such a big joy. I tell you; uninterrupted spiritual routine I learned from him. I am so happy, he did it till the day he died. The day he died, he did puja, went to hospital and passed away by afternoon.