Three times our discipleship saved us

This is one of the stories in our Story-Gems project, a collection of our experiences with our Guru, Sri Chinmoy. Project homepage »

Jogyata and his wife Subarata in full clown costume.

When Vyakulata left New Zealand after some years to live in New York, she left behind her bright yellow car and kindly invited us to use it whenever the need arose. One day I drove her car out along the southern motorway to perform as a clown at a kids’ birthday party in south Auckland, decked out in voluminous clown trousers, big shoes, red nose—the works!

Halfway to my destination, I was suddenly overwhelmed by sleep. I tried singing, putting my head out the window, shouting my name, anything to stay awake. Then I crashed, driving at 90 kilometres per hour, head-on into a concrete bridge column! The engine was pushed up into the passenger seat, the wheels were shorn off, everything was concertina’d into a crumpled wreckage. Fast asleep, helpless and with seat belt on, I was awoken by a tremendous bang on impact, and saw only whirling sky and flying glass.

Miraculously I was completely untouched—not a scratch or even a bruise. Ambulances came, police came, tow trucks came—everyone was astonished that I was alive, and even more so that I had emerged so totally unscathed.

Curiously, each time I passed this spot over the next few weeks—pointing out to my passengers the yellow splashes of wreckage still dotting the roadside—I could feel a force pulling me, as though down a dark tunnel, into the same place. Later Guru said that it was a hostile force that had attacked me, but that I had felt the arms of the Supreme around me and survived.


Years later my discipleship again saved me, when I was struck by lightning in Indonesia. I had a premonition that something bad was about to happen, so, while crossing a village street in the rain, I began chanting “Supreme” very fast. Then I was lying on the ground, numb and uncomprehending, surrounded by a circle of faces peering down at me, unable to feel anything down the right side of my body.

Later, partially recovered, I recounted my adventure to Guru. He smiled and said that I had been in a very good consciousness, leaving unspoken the clear implication that things could have been much, much worse.

Alone one evening in our house in Auckland, my wife Subarata saw a very large man with a club trying to get in one of our windows – we had no telephone, so instead she shouted at him. But then he tried to force a door. She sat at her shrine and prayed intensely for protection. Faith and belief and devotion are such powerful things! After some time she heard very clearly a voice saying to her, three times, “You are protected, you are protected, you are protected.” Then the intruder went away. She was so excited and thrilled by this experience, all her fear vanished. She was elated by the voice of her unseen guardian.

For protection,
More protection
And infinitely more protection,
Each human being
Must pray to God.

Sri Chinmoy 1

  • 1. Seventy-Seven Thousand Service-Trees, part 23, #22309, Agni Press, 2001