When I was small, just started going to school, boys in our neighborhood were obsessed with the idea of opening their third eyes. Many Indians believe that experiencing supernatural things like seeing the God, seeing the deceased or reading other’s mind is possible only by those who have their third eyes open. It is also believed that very few ascetics, who live alone, either in hermitages or in mountain caves, have their third eyes open. We, at least none in our village, had ever seen any such ascetic, but we all believed it to be true almost like believing that the earth revolves round the sun. Somebody in our village, no one knew who he was, had spread the idea of a quick and easy method about how to open the third eye, without any need to leave the family and practice all kinds of painstaking ancient Indian practices; all that was needed was to rub the slightly depressed area just above the nose and between the two eyebrows, called glabella with a piece of dry and preferably starched cloth, only one hundred and eight times and “bam” the barrier in front of the third eye would disappear. In our home two of my big brothers, out of three, tried to open their third eyes. Probably after about fifty rubs or so the skins became so red and the pain became so unbearable that they had to stop rubbing. I did not know if the total count for both of them had reached the magic number 108, had it reached that number they should have pressed their heads together and tried to find out if if they could see anything supernatural or at least half supernatural. However their pain did not end there, in fact it was just the beginning, when our mother realized what two of her boys were up to, she took a stick in her hand and when the stick started making frequent contacts with the recipients’ backs probably many third eyes opened at those points of contact. But that was still not the end of their sufferings, when my father returned from his work in the evening and came to know about the endeavor two of his sons had undertaken, he started sharing his piece of mind. But it was not only my two big brothers at our home but many boys in our neighborhood had tried the same method but all of them had to give up in the middle. It took few days for the ruptured skin to heal. Even though I had an intention to open my third eye and was just waiting for the outcome of my two elder siblings’ efforts, after witnessing their sufferings due to ruptured skin followed by sound beating I decided to give up. But many years later, I came across a gentleman who told me a real life story and I realized that glabella can play some important role in curing certain serious ailments.
I was working in Pacific Bell, San Francisco; we were developing software for the resell of long-distance telephone services to end customers. We had a software architect in our team, named Xavier, who was in his mid-40s at that time. Xavier was born, brought up and educated in France and moved to the USA at a later stage of his life.
One day while I was working in my office he suddenly stopped by and after few words of formal greetings he suddenly asked me if I practiced yoga. I was completely unprepared to hear such a question but I also realized that his interest about yoga was different from that of many westerners; it was a personal experience for him. When I inquired about it he mentioned that he was getting late for a meeting but he would comeback soon and would give answer to my question.
Next day Xavier stopped by into my office, sat on a chair and without even asking if I was busy, started sharing a story which is still hard for me to believe but I know that he did not lie to me.
Xavier, when he was young and living in Paris, was married to a young French woman named Marianne, who was once married before and had a child out of his first wedlock.
Marianne was a trapeze artist at a circus company in Paris where her first husband also used to perform. One day, while performing, she fell down but was recovered in a few hours’ time, she had no sign of any external injury except few bruises and she was completely asymptomatic. She continued with her performances in the same circus company for few more years and after that she and her husband decided to have their first child.
As soon as Marianne had become pregnant, she stopped performing. Soon she started developing early symptoms of paralysis in her lower limbs. Without any delay doctor was consulted and it was realized that her fall from the trapeze, few years ago while she was performing in the circus was not benign as it was originally thought, it had caused some permanent damage in her central nervous system but as long as she was active and performing in the circus she did not develop any symptom. But when she became symptomatic, she was also pregnant hence doctors recommended only physiotherapy but no drugs; physiotherapy did not help her much; soon Marianne became paralyzed, she could not move any organ below her waist line. She needed 24×7 assistance for living. She gave birth to a normal and healthy child after nine months but her condition was getting worse day-by-day, drugs and physiotherapy did not help her. Suddenly her husband discovered an advertisement in a local newspaper in Paris; according to that advertisement an Indian “Yoga Guru” who was living in Hong Kong was claiming to cure any disease, incurable by western medicines, by means of yoga. That advertisement was like a piece of floating straw to Marianne’s husband, who called the Yoga Guru’s office and soon afterwards traveled to Paris with Marianne, who by then was not able to sit even on a chair without somebody holding her.
When she and her husband met the Indian “Yoga Guru” she was asked to sit on a chair, while her husband holding her, and focus on her glabella with her mind and utter the sound “ohm” repeatedly, because she was not capable of doing anything more than that, three times a day, morning, noon and evening. She was asked to sit on a cushion folding her legs when her situation would improve and she would be in a position to sit like a normal person. She was not given any herbs or asked to burn any incense sticks. What she was asked to practice three times a day was called “Raja Yoga” according to the “Indian Yoga Guru”.
Marianne and her husband lived in a small hotel in Hong Kong and from the hotel they used to visit the Yoga Guru’s office every day where she used to practice the yoga in front of the Guru while her husband used to hold her while she remained seated on a chair trying to keep her spinal cord erect as much as possible. After little more than a month of regular practice Marianne started moving her lower limbs, slowly, and was able to stand, with little bit of help from her husband. They were given an option to return to Paris and practice the same yoga regularly and they returned to Paris soon afterwards.
After six months she was able to practice yoga sitting on a cushion in lotus posture and she needed no help for her day-to-day living. Eventually she became a normal person, without any symptom of paralysis. Soon some changes occurred in her religious life, probably being helped by a “Godly man”, who used to wear a saffron colored robe, she became inclined to God and started frequenting a Church in Paris; she turned into a devout catholic. But that was also the time there developed some irreconcilable differences between Marianne and her first husband and they decided to become separate.
Almost a year after that Marianne met Xavier, and few months after that they got married at a Church in Paris.
After marriage Xavier insisted Marianne to introduce him to the same “Yoga Guru” who cured her. When they contacted his Hong Kong office they came to know that the “Guru” had moved to his head office in Bangalore and his Hong Kong office was being looked after by his Chinese student.
Soon afterwards both of them visited the Guru’s office in Bangalore where the Guru welcomed Marianne and Xavier. During their visit in Bangalore the Guru requested Marianne to open a yoga school in Paris to spread yoga. Upon their return to Paris, Marianne started her own Yoga school.
Few years after that Marianne and Xavier had huge personal differences and they got divorced and few years after that Xavier moved to the USA.
At the end of the story I remained speechless for some time and finally asked him how much Marianne had paid to the Indian “Yoga Guru” as a fee for helping her when she was paralyzed.
“Nineteen Hong Kong dollars” he replied.
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