But he hasn’t really gone. Doesn’t love in one form or another touch us every day? How could he not be near?
It was in November 2011 that Swami presented to me the very first copy of The Answer, fresh from his printer, a script written by him based on his life. It carried his handwritten notes in the margin. He gave me no particular reason as to why it was that he wished for me to have it. To me this was a moment of great elation. Not just because he had trusted me with it, but because nobody at Ananda knew then of my connection with films and the film world. The fact that Swami seemed to know gave me an inner joy since it reinforced the thought I had long carried about Swami’s consciousness. It was something not really comprehended by all, in its entirety.
I held the script close to my heart as I left his room at the Pune ashram.
On reading it that night the single uppermost thought that arose was that this film needed to be made. It carried a message which a world torn with strife and grief was ready to imbibe.
A year later, Swamiji sent for me again, this time asking me to produce the film. Within ten days one had managed to put together a team. Soon we had a schedule, crew and travel plans in place for our first shoot in Kolkata. All was set…except that we had no funds. Those who had promised help, had for one reason or another backed out. The next time I met with Swami I received a beautiful red envelope with the equivalent of $2000 in it from his personal account…which was all he had.
I knew then within my heart and from the look in Swami’s eyes that the funds would come. I had received the seed money… all we had to do was keep going determinedly. Sure enough, the funds did arrive, that too within a day of our first shot taken at 4 Gurpar Road, Kolkata in Master’s attic. A blessed devotee from India offered to be the answer to our prayers. She is now the divinely ordained recipient of not just our heartfelt gratitude but the chosen one of Master and Swamiji for their mission.
It was one miracle after another, material enough to be a book, that has been unfolding ever since. Victor Bannerji, an international star who I wrote to on a hunch, agreed to play the role of Master. I took him to meet with Swami in Kolkata who seemed so happy to have him on board.
We have finally reached a stage today where we are set for our next major schedule in Romania, recreating Swamis childhood years. This is the third leg of our filming, having completed the ones in India and Ananda Village in California.
To live vicariously through Swamis script, the journey of his life, has been an experience that can only be felt, not described.
This is the first feature film written by Swami that will hopefully reach millions, a film that speaks of one mans journey to self realization, meant to enthuse and inspire those yearning to be touched by the love of God.
In Swami’s own words “I believe this movie will be a priceless legacy for centuries to come, worthy of being treasured for ages.”
Blessed to be part of this project is the director Pavan Kaul. Swamiji on meeting with him remarked “Finally I have found a Director who I like and will make the movie I want”. Also deeply involved is cinematographer Hiroo Keswani, and our Ananda Gurubhais who have enlivened this project, apart from the cast and crew across three continents: India, North America, and Europe.
Our goal is to make this film worthy of Swami’s prophecy. He and Master sure seem to be helping us along. Insurmountable challenges suddenly melt away. Often have we felt his protective hand wipe off stress from our troubled brow. He knows all. How else can we explain why he insisted on finishing his portion of the shoot in Mumbai in February even though he was extremely unwell!
Like he wrote to me once “I am anxious that this film be made”.
Swami, we are too and cooperating with your Grace, and will soon accomplish your mission.