Editor's Choice

Memories of our Divine Mother: 11. ASHLEY GARDENS


The Great Adi Shakti Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi
The Paraclete Shri Mataji

1) Marilyn Leate said:

The real cathedral

In those early days we all had the pleasure of going for personal visits to Shri Mataji and Sir CP's apartment in Ashley Gardens, next to the cathedral in Victoria. Of course, Shri Mataji's apartment was the real cathedral.

Marilyn Leate





2) Linda Williams said:

Yes I do try

I was with Mother at Ashley Gardens [where She moved to in about 1978]. The flat was on the top floor and overlooked the Roman Catholic Cathedral of London, Westminster Cathedral. I noticed that Her flat was near the east end of the cathedral and mentioned this to Mother.”Yes, I do try“Was Her reply. Worshippers would always kneel towards the main altar at the east end of the church. So even though they did not realize it, they were kneeling in the right direction.

At one point Mother had a maid who was an Indian Christian. She was a bit tricky and complained to the Jesuits at the cathedral about Mother, not in Her capacity as an employer, but because She was divine, in that many people who came to the flat recognized Her as such. Well, that was more or less the problem, one intuited. One evening Sir CP had a diplomatic party and Mother had had some caterers in. They brought some crates of alcohol, whisky or wine or something like that and these were left overnight when the party was finished. The following morning the Jesuits happened to turn up to"defend the faith.”They eyed the crates of drink lying in the hallway, waiting to be returned to the caterers and Mother asked them if they would like a crate of whisky. They could not believe their good fortune and left delighted, without troubling Mother with their intellects. The maid had lost out to the real interest of the Jesuits, it seemed.

Mother said the noise of the wine being delivered every morning to the cathedral across the road for the communion service, or whatever they used it for, was deafening. It was just like a pub. In fact, one morning when I was there, before I knew it was the church booze being delivered, I thought it was a pub! The Jesuits got the form of the spirit they wanted and were very happy and the maid couldn't do much about it.

Linda Williams





3) Pamela Bromley said:

Feeling the love

I was at Ashley Gardens once and I didn't really have any clothes much. And Mother gave me a coat, this beautiful coat and I remember going back home to Brighton on the train, feeling totally" " feeling the love of having been there with Shri Mataji and Her patience and Her working on me and totally covered in this coat while I was sitting on the train. I can remember it now. It was an amazing feeling. And I've still got the coat and the shoes and the shawl and everything else.

Pamela Bromley





4) Marilyn Leate said:

She has this way of putting people at their ease

My first ever visit [to Ashley Gardens] came after attending only two of Her programs, so it was my third encounter with Shri Mataji. She has this way of putting people at their ease” " instantly. I remember I walked in clutching a brown paper bag containing seven limes and seven chillies without the faintest idea why She had asked me to bring them along. I had a vague notion of Her Holiness blending them in a food mixer, then popping in some mystical Ayurveda to make a curing elixir. She took one motherly, enthusiastic look at me, clutching my madka, and laughed,” You don't need them. You're better!"

She Mataji asked me how I had cleared myself. I explained that it all got drawn out. I told Her I'd had nightmares about war. She asked me if I'd ever been in a war and when I told Her that I hadn't, She seemed to go into a concentrated reflection on this.

She told me that it was the duty of the born realized to help the others. She likened it to us all being in a tall building. The born realized are on a higher floor and, so when they look out of the window, they can see further. It's their duty to inform those upon the lower floors what they can see and thus enable them to come up to their level.

I would like to stress that this was over twenty years ago when Sahaja Yogis were in their infancy, so to speak. Nowadays, Sahaja Yogis seem, on the whole, much more evolved and aware than we were in those days. I'd also like to add that in the eighties Mother expressed Her displeasure at the born realized, saying that just because they can do simple addition, they think they are great mathematicians, adding that many had caused Her trouble.

Marilyn Leate





5) Djamel Metouri said:

Today we can talk quite freely about religion

When Shri Mataji was renovating Ashley Gardens, we used to go down to the McDonald's sometimes and have our lunch there. And when we were sitting down She used to say things like"Just imagine that today we can just sit down and talk quite freely about religion, talk freely about anything in fact, whereas in the days of Mohammed, in Islam, if you said anything, they just came out with swords. And people would just kill you because you said something which was out of place.”But She said that now we can't imagine what it is like, the evolution that has taken place, which has made people live in a very comfortable world, in terms of freedom of speech and being able to do what you want to do, which you couldn't do in those days.

One thing that I thought was amazing was that She said,” I can remember very well all those times and how we lived in those days. And the women were not protected at all" "" in the sense that they were protected by the Prophet. But the problem with the women in those days was that they were in a male-dominated society. People would just come and ransack a caravan and rape all the women and take them as slaves. It was a terrible situation. And the Prophet, when He came, one of the things He said, so that people recognized the women around the Prophet, like Aisha, Fatima and so on, they had a veil, they were dressed in a particular way and they were recognized by people outside. So She explained the reason why the Prophet asked the women to cover themselves. It was to stop the men from being attracted by them and then, of course, behaving in a way that was very adharmic.

So Shri Mataji explained, one of the things She explained, was that, as Adi Shakti, She in fact incarnated partly in Fatima and partly in Mohammed. And that is why Fatima was like the deity of the left Nabhi, the deity of the Mahalakshmi, in fact.

Djamel Metouri





6) Pamela Bromley said:

I don't like to think of my children being hungry

It is just a time at Ashley Gardens and we were three of us and we were upholstering Mother's bed and there was a diplomatic party on in the evening, so we had to hide because there was no way we could get out of the flat. To get out, we had to go through Mother's bedroom and the flat to get out. So we were like stuck in Mother's bedroom. And She came in halfway through the evening with a tray of food and She said,” I brought you these things to eat because I don't like to think of my children being hungry.”And after it was over we sort of sneaked out of the flat.

Pamela Bromley





7) Linda Williams said:

Up to the satellite

Somebody who'd been involved with some false guru and Mother said,” Put him on the phone“And She was saying the mantras down the phone to him in Australia and it's like, you know, the mantras are going up to the satellite and down again. It was just incredible. And here was Mother really blasting these mantras into this person's ear the other side of the world. And it was somebody down in Sydney I remember and we were all in Ashley Gardens listening to Mother doing this.

Linda Williams





8) Marilyn Leate said:

Greet me as you would greet your mother

My second visit to Ashley Gardens was with two friends, one who was completely new to everything and had with her her six month old son. The other who had attended one program a few months earlier and was having emotional problems because she was breaking up with her partner.

When Shri Mataji entered the sitting room to meet us, the friend, who was completely new, moved towards Shri Mataji saying,” I don't know how to greet you.” Shri Mataji replied,” Greet Me as you would greet your mother.”So my friend threw her arms around Shri Mataji and gave Her a big hug, which, of course, Shri Mataji returned. Shri Mataji began bandhaning the little baby and put a lot of attention saying,” I'm giving him so many bandhans because in these terrible times the born realized are under so much attack.”And She gave my case as an example. I'd like to stress that this was back in the seventies and, I am sure, it is quite the opposite these days.

To the other friend, Shri Mataji exhibited Her powers of understanding everything, for She outlined the situation the girl was in without her or any of us having opened our mouths. Her Holiness went into accurate detail, which could not be explained except that Mother knows everything. She explained with great care what this girl should do to ease her emotional pain and how to save the relationship" " all said in such a gracious, easy, humble, grandmotherly way, which belied the power She was exhibiting and kept us at our ease.

Marilyn Leate





9) Djamel Metouri said:

Even when She was asleep She was working on us

I remember in the days of 1978, when Gregoire [de Kalbermatten] was around as well. He was writing a book on Sahaja Yoga called The Advent, which everybody knows. And we used to be living in Finchley Road. And every morning She used to phone around nine o'clock, just after Sir CP had gone to work and She used to say,” Okay, come over.” And we used to go to Her flat, Ashley Gardens, and spend the morning. Then we would leave at lunch time, when Sir CP was about to come. The least we could do was to try not to disturb Her married life and disturb Sir CP, who had an important job as secretary-general of the IMO/UN [United Nations International Maritime Organization].

Djamel Metouri





10) Gregoire de Kalbermatten said:

I stayed one year in London to finalize The Advent and saw Mother several times a week. And She still recalls laughingly that I was bombarding Her with so many questions. But She always replied, steadily, brilliantly. Only slowly did I cool down. In those days She revealed so much and mentioned things that I never heard Her uttering again.

I soon found Her so much more knowledgeable, competent and convincing than were any other teachers or gurus I had visited in several countries. She moved with total ease from the most practical and down- to-earth subject to the highest metaphysical consideration. It was a very special time for the few of us. She fed us so often, keeping us for lunch or dinner. Sir CP was always most gracious when he found us in his home, back from his long days of work at IMO, sitting at his table and sometimes wearing his kurtas.

Gregoire de Kalbermatten





11) Djamel Metouri said:

She used to work on us and we used to do all kinds of things. She was working on Gregoire's book. We used to go shopping with Her. And in the afternoon we often sat down around Her and would have a nap, with our Sahasraras directed towards Her body. And She used to work on us, even when She was asleep She was working on us.

Djamel Metouri





12) Pamela Bromley said:

When you're with Her She just mends you

Quite early on with Mother at Ashley Gardens, I went up with Mother in the lift and there wasn't much space. I was standing opposite Mother and She just put Her hand on my sternum bone, there. I'd only just got my Realization, as well. Then She said,” Ah, that's better. That's better now.”I didn't know that I was ill, but it was better. And it's just that Mother can't help it. When you're with Her and She's near you, She just mends you, doesn't She?”Gall bladder or something,” She said.

Pamela Bromley





13) Linda Williams said:

Divine law

We were invited to Mother's flat in Victoria, at the top of Ashley Gardens. It was the morning and we took Hester Spiro, then Fishburg. There must have been perhaps eight or ten of us altogether and I remember a few things. Firstly, Mother spoke to Hester, who was then a practising barrister, and Mother said,” I understand divine law, Hester, but human law I cannot understand.”Then Mother offered us coffee and at that time I was a health fanatic and took neither coffee nor sugar. Mother offered me both and the Sahaja Yogi sitting next to me made it quite clear that one does not refuse anything offered by Shri Mataji.

Then a strange thing happened. I was sitting next to the door, looking at Shri Mataji, who was on the other side of the room. While I was drinking my coffee, I felt there was someone behind me and assumed it was Shri Mataji's live-in maid, who had been bringing the coffee and snacks in previously. But then Shri Mataji looked at me and said,” Linda, your father is standing behind you. He has been very worried about you and you must tell him you are all right now and I will look after you.”My father had indeed died very suddenly of a heart attack two years previously and [my daughter] little Auriol had often described seeing an elderly man of his description standing at the bottom of her bed, after his death. We lived in a strange shadow world at that time. But after that day, he was never there any more.

Linda Williams



Related Articles:
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 1
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 2
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 3
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 4
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 5
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 6
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 7
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 8
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 9
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 10
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 11
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 12
Memories of our Divine Mother Shri Mataji 13





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