A disciple re-incarnates

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


Some souls do have two lifetimes with Guru, like Nivedita. Nivedita was a Canadian disciple who passed away as Guru was speaking to her on the phone. Paramita, a fellow Canadian disciple, described it like this:

Nivedita’s passing, many years ago, was absolutely spiritually spectacular. She was in the hospital in a two-bed room, and the spiritual energy at her bedside was so powerful that you absolutely could not NOT meditate. You HAD to meditate, and the meditation was just going rocket-high. Even the lady who was the patient in the next bed was sitting up meditating and praying.

Nivedita joined Sri Chinmoy's path in the 1970's

Around Nivedita’s bed were her children and a number of disciples from the Ottawa Centre. For hours we were there with her, just meditating and meditating in this absolutely incredible energy. Nivedita’s physical body was moving through the last stages of taking a breath or two, and then there would be quite a long pause, and another breath or two.

Somewhere during the afternoon, the telephone rang and Kritagyata answered. It was Ashrita, who said, “Guru is asking you to put the phone on Nivedita’s ear.” We could then hear Guru singing to Nivedita the song he had composed for her. And with Guru singing or speaking in her ear, she breathed her last.

I told her to sing. I said, “I will take full responsibility.” I gave her the full description of Heaven, and I said, “Today, as I am here, I am also in Heaven.” I was talking with her for two or three minutes, and while she was listening to me, she passed. What an experience!


About six or eight years later, my daughter Lisa was attending nursing school in Ottawa, and in her senior year they were being taught how to nurse people through the process of dying. The nursing professor wanted to describe the most beautiful death that she had ever experienced in her nursing career, and she proceeded to describe Nivedita’s death. Lisa went up to her afterwards and said, “I know that lady that you were describing.” The professor said, “No, Lisa, you couldn’t possibly. It happened many years ago.” But Lisa said, “Oh yes, I do. That was Nivedita Johnston.” And the professor said, “You’re absolutely right!”

About ten years after Nivedita had passed away, I was in New York at a function in the school. Guru gave out Prasad and a little girl of about five years old passed in front of Guru with her mother. Guru was looking at her and looking at her very intensely.

When everyone had passed by, Guru called the little girl back again. Guru wrote on a piece of paper and put it on her head. A friend of mine sitting next to me said, “I bet that Nivedita has come back again.” He was absolutely right.

Sri Chinmoy and Nivedita

Guru gave a little speech about what a great victory it was for the soul. Guru said, “Our Nivedita had found us again.” She had incarnated in what was then East Germany. The little girl remembered all the pet names she had had for her disciple friends in New York. She remembered them all very, very well. She remembered working in the Divine Enterprises in New York and all her friends. All the connections were very strong. She remembered them all very clearly.

Life is a journey.
Death is the continuation of the journey.
Heaven is a temporary rest
For the commencement and fulfilment
Of a new life, a new hope
And a new promise.

Sri Chinmoy 1