) Babaji (Revered
Father), aka Mahamuni Babaji Maharaj (Supreme Ecstatic
Master) aka Maha Yogi (Great Yogi
). This enlightened master has held off his ascension
into light for unknown ages, compassionately remaining to aid humanity's journey towards spiritual truth. Friend and guru
himself. Reintroduced the ancient science of Kriya Yoga
to the world through his disciples, including Lahiri Mahasaya
, guru to Sri Yukteswar
, guru to Paramahansa Yogananda
, founder of Self Realization Fellowship
. The following is a brief quote from Yoganandaji
's Autobiography Of A Yogi
, copyright 1946.
Babaji, Yogi-Christ of Modern India
The Northern Himalayan crags near Badrinarayan are still blessed by the living presence of Babaji, guru of Lahiri Mayasaya. The secluded master has retained his physical form for centuries, perhaps for milleniums. The deathless Babaji is an avatara. This Sanskrit word means "descent"; its roots are ava, "down" and tri, "to pass". In the Hindu scriptures, avatara signifies the descent of Divinity into flesh.
"Babaji's spiritual state is beyond human comprehension," Sri Yukteswar explained to me. "The dwarfed vision of men cannot pierce to his transcendental star. One attempts in vain to picture the avatar's attainment. It is inconceivable."
The Upanishads have minutely classified every stage of spiritual advancement. A siddha ("perfected being") has progressed from the state of paramukta ("supremely free"--full power over death); the latter has completely escaped from the mayic thralldom and its reincarnational round. The paramukta therefore seldom returns to a physical body; if he does return, he is an avatar, a divinely appointed medium of supernal blessings on the world. An avatar is unsubject to the universal economy; his pure body, visible as a light image, is free from any debt to Nature.
Great prophets like Christ and Krishna come to earth for a specific and spectacular purpose; they depart as soon as it is accomplished. Other avatars, like Babaji, undertake work that is concerned more with the slow evolutionary progress of man during the centuries than with any one outstanding event of history. Such masters always veil themselves from the gross public gaze and have the power to become invisible at will. For these reasons, and because they generally instruct their disciples to maintain silence about them, a number of towering spiritual figures remain world-unknown. I give in these pages on Babaji merely a hint of his life--only a few facts that he deems fitting and helpful to be publicly imparted.