A Journey to India - Part 4 - Kakrighat

 

From Nainital we started the journey towards Kakrighat to visit the ashram where Sombari Baba spent his time during the winter. Getting to this ashram was a bit more problematic as the road was in worse condition than the roads to the previous ashrams we had visited. It took an hour before we reached our destination because there was a lot of construction work at this time. Even though it took a long time for us to get there, it felt positive that they were working on improving the accessibility to this particular place.

Eventually we arrived at our destination. While outside we became very unsure if it was open to visitors since the gate was closed. Fortunately, we noticed that there was a small door on the gate that could be opened. We stepped into the area and were greeted by a smaller garden. Shortly thereafter we came to the temple area. We stepped in and met two temple caretakers who seemed incredibly happy to see us. They explained that this was the place where Sombari Baba and Neem Karoli Baba spent their time when they were alive.

We felt a huge calm inside of us when we visited this place. The time stopped and an inner peace emerged. We walked around and were met by the huge tree found in the middle of this temple. Under this tree, Sombari Baba used to sit while he was at this location. It felt unreal to sit in the same place as this incredible saint had sat.

I sat down to meditate. This particular day I felt sick and had a fever so it was very hard to for me to go into my meditation. Suddenly it was as if a voice came to me saying that I should go down to the river and wash myself. Sombari Baba always asked his visitors to wash themselves in the river before they stepped into the area. I was ashamed that I forgot to do this and immediately went down to the river. I cleaned my face, arms and legs. As I stepped out of the river, all feelings of fever disappeared and I did not feel sick anymore. I felt as if it was Sombari Baba who had made me recover and I felt incredible grateful.

We spent a few of hours in the area and we bathed in the feelings of well being that this place gave us. It was so soothing to be in this place and my faith to Sombari Baba became even stronger.

Within this temple there was also a section dedicated to Neem Karoli Baba. When he was alive he wished that a temple would be built at this spot because Sombari Baba had stayed here. It is the Kainichi Dham ashram who is responsible for preserving this place, demonstrating the incredible reverence that Neem Karoli Baba felt for Sombari Baba.

Inside the temple there was a statue of Neem Karoli Baba and pictures from when he was alive. Being able to feel the presence of these two amazing saints in one place was powerful. This location has left a memory for life and we long for the next time we will get the opportunity to visit this temple again.

Nearby there is also a temple dedicated to Swami Vivekananda so we decided to visit this place as well. Unfortunately, it was in very bad condition, but they were working hard to restore it. At this place Swami Vivekananda had one of the most important experiences of his life. He saw how the whole inner and outer world is one and that God exists in everything. It was while meditating under a tree that he gained this strong experience, and around this tree they have built this ashram. Unfortunately, the tree is no longer there since it died but they took a sapling from it and it's slowly growing tall again. Hopefully, the new tree will be a place where more people will experience the same amazing experienced that Swami Vivekananda had.