Intro : Out of lakhs of her devotees, Mata Amritanandamayi chose Dr Abdul Kalam for her special grace which made him the President of Bharat.
Sadguru Shishya (Student) Parampara (tradition) has been the hallmark of Bharatiya ancient Sanatan culture. This holy, spiritual association has stood Bharat in good stead whenever Bharatiya society showed up the signs of utter destabilisation. While quite a few instances can be cited to bring home this point, Saint Ramdas Swami-Shivaji Maharaj, Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa-Swami Vivekananda, Sadguru Shishya relationships come to our mind instantly and help us affirm our faith in the glorious time tested spiritual association. And if we go by the life of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, we are pleasantly surprised that Abdul Kalam found himself caught, perhaps, unaware by Mata Amritanandamayi at whose lotus feet he remained to the last breath of his life. It may be a little known fact, but the fact remains that Dr Kalam was Mata Amritanandamayi’s one of the staunchest disciples so much so that he was ever at the receiving end of her grace.
It is with the spiritual association that he became more and more compassionate and strove hard to bring light into the lives of the poor and exhibit utmost love to the children. The heart and intellect point in almost opposite directions, but Amma’s grace flew spontaneously into his heart. In his case while science air-conditioned the outer world, Amma’s spiritual proximity air-conditioned his inner world. All this happened when Mata Amritanandamayi appeared before the world at large in 1976 in her Divine form. Out of millions of her followers who streamed to Amritapuri, she chose Dr Kalam to strengthen her mission to strengthen Bharat scientifically and technologically, in turn, revitalise Bharat’s culture, thought and philosophy. That they amply succeeded in their mission is a universal fact.
It is inexplicable but the fact remains, out of lakhs of her devotees, she chose Dr Abdul Kalam for her special grace which made him the President of Bharat when Vajpayee (then Prime Minister) also her ardent follower, was in search of a nationalist candidate to take the reins of Rashtrapati Bhavan. In fact, it was the dire need of the hour because long after the tenures of Dr Rajendra Prasad and Dr S Radhakrishnan who made Bharat a nation to reckon with, in the world polity through their nobility of mind, erudite scholarship and absolute simplicity reflecting Bharatiya culture’s inherent capacity to pervade the rest of the world, Bharat needed a man of unusual stature. Dr Rajendra Prasad, Dr S Radhakrishnan, and now Dr Abdul Kalam, the three majestic men together, it won’t be an exaggeration to mention, form the immortal Divine Trinity of Bharatiya Presidents. They shall ever be remembered as world’s leading lights and statesmen because they being visionaries, they projected Bharatiya vision of ‘Unity in Diversity’. It is indeed a glorious, illuminating example of Sadguru-Shishya relationship. To quote Avadhoot Gita, “Whoever whether he be ignorant or learned, attains to the full awareness of Truth through the grace of a teacher’s wisdom, becomes detached from the ocean of worldiness” (II, 23).
Dr Abdul Kalam is reported to have taken Mata Amritanandamayi around Rashtrapati Bhavan after he became President of Bharat and also donated one year’s salary to her Amritapuri Ashram in Kerala. What is more, Mata Amritanandamayi got Amritapuri Setu inaugurated by Dr Kalam. It is facilitating thousands of people on either side of the Setu, day in and day out. To quote Avadhoot Gita again, “He who is free from attachment and hatred, devoted to the good of all beings, fixed in knowledge and steady, shall attain to the Supreme state” (II, 24). Who can doubt Abdul Kalam’s attainment of the Supreme State?
SS Karkhanis (The writer is a HOD (English) Retd., Badruka College of Commerce & Arts, Hyderabad)