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  • Writer's pictureRon Brent

25. Last Meeting: Confrontation with Yogi Bhajan #2

A week into my stay at Gobind Sadan, word comes that Yogi Bhajan has arrived in India with a large group of Western students and will be bringing them to the ashram. Maharaji calls for me, then says that he wants me present when he and Yogi Bhajan meet.

The small room where Virsa Singh holds private meetings is clean, simple, and unadorned. There are plain white walls, with thin sheet or kilim covered mattresses spread across the floor. Pillows lean lazily against the walls with a set of bolsters indicating Virsa Singh’s spot. Everyone, including Maharaji, sits on the floor. Other than the pillows, there are no furnishings in the room.

As Yogi Bhajan enters I can see by his glance in my direction that my presence has caught him off-guard. He approaches Maharaji with folded hands, then kneels to touch his feet. I note his immense discomfort in doing so.

Yogi Bhajan is alone when he enters the room. This is a private meeting, so other members of his group are not invited to attend.

Present in the room with Virsa Singh are: Colonel Gurnam Singh (a Colonel in the Indian Army), Nirlep Kaur, myself, and Yogi Bhajan. The Colonel is wearing his military uniform and translating the conversation for my benefit. At times, Nirlep chimes in to further clarify a point in English.

Maharaji wants me to understand every word, and occasionally looks at me with a sheepish grin on his face. He’s enjoying the moment. Every now and then as he gazes in my direction, he makes a head movement tilting upward, using facial expressions and body language to inquire whether or not I understand what is being said. Yogi Bhajan is visibly ill at ease - something I’d never witnessed before. The self-assured Teacher for the Aquarian Age that I knew back in the US now looks like a petulant child trying to conceal his frustration.

Yogi Bhajan has come to propose to Maharaji that a relationship be established between 3HO and Gobind Sadan. His intention is to link his organization with the highly respected institution that Virsa Singh has established, thus giving 3HO added credibility. He tries to make the point that it’s in their mutual interest, but from the outset it’s clear that Maharaji is not buying it.

When Yogi Bhajan makes his proposal, Maharaji simply laughs it off. He reminds Yogi Bhajan that he never supported the creation of his system of yoga. Maharaji makes it clear that he disapproves of the way Yogi Bhajan has been misleading people in America.

During the entire meeting, Maharaji is his usual calm and radiant self, as he sits methodically fingering his prayer beads. Throughout the meeting, Maharaji often laughs, with the rest of us following suit. This doesn’t include Yogi Bhajan, who fails to hide his discomfort throughout the entire

meeting.

After Yogi Bhajan departs, Maharaji inquires whether or not I understand all that was said. When I acknowledge that I do, he smiles and nods his head in satisfaction.

This proved to be my last encounter with Yogi Bhajan. I very much enjoyed my remaining time at Gobind Sadan, and on the day of my Guru’s arrival in Delhi I secured Maharaji’s blessings, and departed to meet Baba at the airport.

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