Crushing the fear
For a long time in my life, I suffered from nightmares. These nightmares had a common theme. I used to see a dark figure which would show up in my ancestral home; either in the vacant land available or the unused cow-shed (cows were there as long as my grandmother was there to take care of them).
And mind you these nightmares started when I was in the late twenties. And they persisted for about five years. The black image would not look like a demon or ghost; it appeared more like a pitch-black shadow. It would always approach me. Sometimes the image would not have appeared in the dream, but I would start sensing in my dream that it is going to appear. I would start feeling restless, uncomfortable and would wake up screaming. On an average, these nightmares at its peak, appeared a few times in a month.
The most surprising part was that the moment I would wake up; I would not have any trace of fear which literally paralyzed me in my dreams. I would feel completely normal after getting up. Many times in my dream, I would start chanting the name of God and would wake up while chanting continued in my mind.
One certain night, in a little different setting in my dream, I was in a sthanak (sthanak is a Hindi word & denotes a house where Swetambar Jains would assemble, meditate or carry out other spiritual activities; this is also a place where monks or nuns would stay temporarily). This was the sthanak which was right next to my ancestral home.
In my dreams, I go to the sthanak and I find nobody to be there. I start walking inside and start looking into different rooms. Soon, I start anticipating the image to appear in my dream and sensing what is going to happen next I become scared. This time, I call upon Sathya-Sai-Baba in my dreams. No sooner did I take his name, I saw that Shirdi-Sai-Baba appeared. I was pleasantly surprised since I did not call out to Shirdi-Sai-Baba but Sathya Sai Baba. I could see that Shirdi-Sai-Baba continued to grow in size (similar to how Hanumanji grew in size in Ramayana TV serial). He became several hundred feet tall in stature. He raised one of his foot and crushed the dark image which by that time had appeared in my dream under His foot.
With this the frequency of the dreams drastically reduced, and it is pretty much non-existent today. It is several years since the dream.
Here comes another dream experience. About 7 to 8 years back, I had to go to US for some important assignment. I had traveled to Europe & Asia before this few times without running into any visa issues. However, for certain reasons due to technical areas red flags, my visa processing went into administrative processing state. The consulate retained my passport and there was no clarity on when would I get the visa. At this moment, after a few weeks, I prayed to Sathya Sai Baba for his guidance.
I saw a dream in which Sathya Sai Baba appeared in my ancestral home. In the dream, I touched his feet and felt an immense sense of peace. I guess the overwhelming peace which I felt in the dream helped calm my unwarranted worries about the assignment and the delay in VISA. Baba opened his wallet and gave me some coins and blessed me. Within a week after the dream, I got my passport with the visa stamped. Baba must have noticed I was getting worried for no reasons, and He appeared to comfort me.
Dreams or no dreams, Baba is always up for the well being of his devotees. Via diverse sets of experiences and different learning, we all reach to Him.
Om Sai Ram dear friends. Love, Light & Peace to you all.