Jai Mai Jai Markand Mai
Every human activity is prompted by the desire for happiness. Happiness stems from love. Riches do not make a man happy if he is disliked and hated by people around him. On the other hand, if a man is liked and loved by his neighbors he will be happy, no matter how poor he is. Happiness is the child of love, a child that seldom leaves its parent. Where there is love there is happiness
Everyone likes to be thought well of by others; that is another way of saying everyone likes to be loved by others. The simplest way to gain other people’s love is to love them. Love is reciprocal. If you love others, others will love you. Love begets love.
Love is an abstract concept. It can not be seen. It expresses itself in slervice. When you are in trouble er those who love you rush to you to help and serve you.
Service is the concrete expression of love.
Thus if you love and serve others you will be loved and served by others, and you become happy. Happiness has to be milked out by making others happy.
We are now in the space-age. One can go from one end of the globe to the other in a few hours.
The result is all human beings are neighbors to one another. Therefore ‘Love your neighbor’ means ‘Love all’. Love must be universal. Universal love engenders Universal Service.
These two principles: Universal Love and Universal Service are the most important tenets of Mai-ism, the Universal religion declared in 1932 by Rev. Mai-Swarupa Mai Markand-Maiji to his disciples.
” Some would raise their eye-brows and ask: ‘Is that all? That is nothing new’. Mai-ism does not claim to have introduced any new idea. Nor for that matter has any new idea been introduced by any religion after the first. Hinduism is said to be the oldest religion. The famous eighteen puranas composed by Sage Veda Vyasa were summarized by a great Savant in a couplet: Ashtadasa Puraneshu Vyasasya Vachana Dwayam Paropakara Punyaya Papaya Parapeedanam
(अष्टादश पुराणेषू व्यासस्य वचनदवयँ परोपकार पुण्याय पापायः परपीडन)
The couplet means: Vyasa has said two things in eighteen Puranas and they are: Helping others is merit and sin consists in hurting others. The substance of all religions is more or less the same. Where then, was the need for another religion after Hinduism? Yet there are today twelve major religions in the world; So, it is irrelevant to say that Mai-ism has said nothing new.
Though new ideas are not introduced by Mai-ism it has done something that has not been done by any other religion. Mai-ism RELIGIONISES love and service. They are not mere recommendations or pieces of advice as in other religions. Let me elucidate the point. Why does a Hindu go to the Temple, a Christian to the Church and a Muslim to the Mosque? The answer is their religions have commanded them to do so.
Let us examine the actual working of the religious commandments. John, a very pious Christian is going in his car to the church to attend service on a Sunday. When the car is within a hundred yards of the Church, he sees a lorry striking down a man and speeding away without stopping. The road is deserted. The poor victim needs immediate medical attention and has to be removed to the nearest hospital which is five miles away. If John stops to help the man he is sure to miss his prayers. He cannot even think of missing his Sabbath. That is a religious offence. There is a fight between duty to man and duty to Church. The latter wins. You may put Abdul Khadir for John, Mosque for church and Jumaya for Sabbath. Or you can say Ramaswami was going to the temple to have darshan on Krishna Jayanti day. The result will not be different.
There may be honorable exceptions; but this talk is addressed to the common man and please remember that common people form more than ninety five percent of humanity. John, Abdul Khadir, and Ramaswamy are good people, but their religious ordinances have to have priority. Now the Mai-istic directive to the Mai-ist in such an incident is like this: “Forget your church, neglect your mosque, forsake your temple ignore the Lord, Allah or Krishna, ignore Mai-put the man in your car take him to the hospital at once” That is what is meant by religionization of Love and Service.
A principle must have the force of a religious commandment; then and then only is it obeyed by the common man. Once certain principles and beliefs are religionized and observed by millions of people a great force is created
Mai-ism places religiosity far above religion, Religiosity is not simply agreeing with certain beliefs or performing some rituals or repeating some prayers. Religiosity is to be seen in the life a man lives. One that does not believe in god but yet believes in the common tie of humanity and practices service and extends love to all to the best of his ability is a Mai-ist.
A poor sickly widow was living in a small thatched hut with her three children aged sixteen four and two. One day when the eldest boy had gone to the bazaar the house caught fire. The poor woman somehow crawled out. She was too weak to bring out the two sleeping children. She stood outside the solitary door holding on to the doorpost for support and cried out for help. Soon there was a crowd. None dared go inside. Smoke belched out; flames leaped up, any moment the roof might collapse. Just then the boy returned from the bazaar. His mother was at the door blocking entry, talking hoarsely and gesticulating wildly. The boy roughly and unceremoniously pushed her aside, dived in through the blinding smoke, came out with one child, rushed in a second time and brought out the other child, and fell down exhausted. The mother who had not stirred from where she had fallen on being pushed by her son wept for joy when she saw that all her children were safe. She never gave a thought to the rough way she had been pushed away. Just so, Universal Mother Mai does not care if you push Her away from your mind if you do so for helping Her children.
It was brotherly love that prompted that teen-ager to risk his life to save his little brother and sister. Now suppose the whole world is a family and all human beings are the children of the same mother; it would be quite natural for the children of the same mother to help one another. That principle – Mother-hood of God – is another tenet of Mai-ism. GOD IS MOTHER OF ALL including people of all nationalities religion or race. Father will be stern and will insist on discipline. Mother is forgiving and loving.
Motherhood of God also is not a new concept introduced by Mai-ism. It is well-known to Hindus and also followers of some other religions. Pope John XXIII who passed away in 1963 was reported to have repeated Mater Mea (Mother Mine) just before he breathed his last. The Budhists of China felt the need for a motherly God and created a Kwan-Yin Budha-a female Budha-a mother Budha when they wanted a merciful God. However Universal Mother Mai is different from all these conceptions because Mai is the mother of all religionists.
The founder of Mai-ism once said Mother Mary of the Christians if Universalized in the Mai-istic sense is Mai.
There is one more important point to be borne in mind in connection with the motherhood of God in Maiism. It is the emphasis placed on Mother-child relationship that is required to be developed by the Mai-ists, the operative word in this context being child. A fifty-year-old person is apt to think himself or herself as the son or daughter of Mai. That is not what is needed. You have to imagine you are a small child in relation to Mai, a child who can play with Mai, coax Mai, demand things from Mai, just as an ordinary child will do with its mother. You must behave like a child towards Mai, living the life of Universal Love and Universal Service to the best of your ability. Nothing will be impossible to you then. This child-likeness is important.
A few direct results flowing from the Mother and child relationship may be noticed. In the first place you can dispense with priests in your approach to God. No child asks anybody else’s permission to go to its mother.
Secondly purificatory baths and ablutions cease to have any meaning. A Hindu has to bathe, a Muslim has to at least wash his hands and face before doing prayers. Same is the case with all other religions. Mai-ism says bodily cleanliness is a matter of your personal hygiene and civic sense; it has nothing to with your prayer. A child playing in dust rushes to its mother regardless of its unclean state. Another point is nobody need despair in Mother’s realm. Wicked and wayward devotees of other religions are often afraid of divine punishment. Mai-ism says a child is entitled to and always gets Mother’s pardon.
Mai-ism fully agrees with the lofty idea that GOD has no form much less sex. However, that applies only to really advanced people. It is impossible for the common man to imagine himself to be the little reflection of a Supreme Being; such a conception is an achievement, not an evolutionary remedy. Bhagavat Geetha says (Chapter 12 verse 5) that it is a very difficult task to realize God for those who think that God has no form.
There have been very many incidents and instances which go to show that God would materialize on concentrated prayer. I may relate a very old story which is much to the point. Once there lived a scholarly brahmin who knew all vedas, performed religious rituals regularly, was noble, kind and courteous to all, everybody called him Rishi. Rishi had a pious illiterate servant Raju who admired, loved and served his master with a dog-like devotion. One day when Rishi was alone, Raju went to him timidly and said ‘Master, Please show me God’. Amazed and amused at this strange request from an unexpected quarter, Rishi answered “How can you ask such a question Raju? God is everywhere. You see that buffalo there. God is in that beast”. Raju appeared to be satisfied. He knew his master would not deceive anybody.
A month later Rishi and Raju were going to another village. They had to pass a narrow lane hedged on either side by a fence made of brambles. At one place, for a yard or two, the fences had caved in from both sides making that part of the lane so narrow that a man had to stand sideways and proceed cautiously to avoid damage to the skin and clothing. After carefully crossing the bottleneck Rishi looked back to see how Raju was faring. What he saw was un-understandably strange. Raju had straightened one bulging fence with his strong hands and was gently muttering: “Now, slowly, slowly, lower your horns a bit, now turn your head a little to the left; walk slowly. Ah. That is right “. The master thought that his servant had suddenly gone mad. He asked sharply: “What is the matter Raju? What has happened to you? Who are you talking to?” “Raju smiled with the happy relief of having survived a crisis and said, “Well, master, you see for yourself. God could not pass through that narrow space I was helping him” Rishi was beside himself with rage Controlling himself with effort he asked: “What God?
Where is God? Are you playing with me after all I have done for you?” Raju was hurt at the master’s words. Like a stricken man he mumbled: “Did not master tell me that God was like a Buffalo? From that day every night I prayed and prayed till morning crying my eyes out to see God. After some days God came and has been with me ever since. I used to wash and feed God. And new master is angry. What can poor Raju do?”. Rishi could not see any buffalo and said as much. Raju could not believe his ears. He was seeing the buffalo but the master said he was not seeing it. And the master would not lie. Rishi too was perplexed as he saw Raju was in earnest. He thought deeply for some time and then his great mind found out the solution. He came and stood by Raju, touched him and looked. Lo, there was the buffalo. To Raju, who was illiterate, God had manifested Himself in the form the devotee imagined; because of the unalloyed desire and concentration and love for God his servant had obtained actual vision of God while he with all his knowledge and performance of rituals had not. The master touched his servant’s feet and hugged him. When I say that God can be supposed to have a form that does not mean the form, for example a picture or an idol, is God. It is only a symbolic representation of God. There is the fairly well known incident that happened several years ago between Swami Vivekananda and the ruler of a Native State. The ruler, a wise and good administrator happened, being a non-Hindu, to make a tactless remark slighting idol worship. Swami ji coughed once or twice and said “I seem to have developed a cold. I want to spit out phlegm. May I do it on that canvas on the wall?” His highness flared up and shouted: “How dare you Swami ji? That is my father”. Vivekananda ji assumed surprise and said: “Your Highness’s father? How can that be? It is a mere piece of canvas with no life” The princely host replied: “Though it is only a painting it represents my father. Every day I pay homage to the picture”. Swami ji said sweetly: “So too the Hindu considers the idol not as God, but as representation of God”.
Thus, a Form can be attributed to God. If that is conceded, the best form is that of a parent. And when we imagine the whole world as one family and all human beings are the children of one parent, it can be easily seen that only a mother’s love can keep the family together as an integrated and viable unit. Some children in the family may be wicked, some may be wayward, some may be dishonest and some idle. Only a mother can forgive the vices and weaknesses of her children and continue to love them.
Lastly there is no need for routine rituals. No doubt some routine worship is being done in Mai-istic congregations. That is considered necessary to enable the devotee to keep up a continual contact with the ideals of Mai-ism; Mai names are repeated at congregations and every time a Maiist repeats Jai Mai Jai Markand Mai vibrations are set up making the sub-conscious mind dwell on the ideals of Mai-ism. An interesting incident relevant to the point may be mentioned.
Keshavalal Pandya a pious Sanatanist Hindu once approached Rev. Mai Swarupa expecting to hear a learned discourse on Geetha and Vedanta. All he heard from the Founder was sweet talk about Love and Service with emphasis on Universality. The visitor got disgusted and started to take leave and just before leaving he asked his host the best way to pray to Mai. Founder said “Do what you like, sing, dance, meditate, kneel or prostrate. Do whatever you like best. There is no particular method with Mai”.
Thus, it is seen that Mai-ism does not set much store on routine worship. Here are a few sentences from the General prayer of a Mai-ist. Oh, Mother, make the wicked virtuous, make the virtuous successful in attaining their peace of mind. May all be freed from dangers May all be living nobly. Mothers! make all happy free from all worries, diseases and calamities.
Besides Universality, Love, Service and Motherhood of God there are two more tenets for the advanced Mai-ists. They are Devotion and Unconditional Cheerful Self surrender to Mother’s will. Any one who believes in God and leads a Mai-istic life of Universal love and service will develop devotion.
There is no limit to what a true devotee can do in this world. As the self-surrender mentioned, it is what is called Sharangathi or Prapathi and perhaps the most difficult to practice. Joseph Headley a reputed religionist of England once wrote in the World religion Congress Report (eighth report) thus: “Unconditional Cheerful Self-surrender mentioned by Mai – Swarupa signifies the necessity for every human being to merge his personal self hood within the Divine will and manifest the same in that greater conscious field of Universality”.
Markand Ratanlal Dholakia who became Mai’s Mercy Mai Swarupa Mai Markand after the declaration of Mai-ism was born of brahmin parents in Gujerat. After taking his diploma in Engineering from Poona Engineering College he entered Government service is 1913 and retired in 1945. From early boyhood he had several wonderful experiences of divine assistance and vision. At the insistent command of Mother Mai he declared Mai-ism on 2-9-1932 at Poona where he was then in service. The command was made directly to him and indirectly through messengers who received orders in dreams to pass the message. Three different persons unknown to one another living in such different places as Bombay, Calcutta and Shimoga (Mysore) received specific directions in dreams to proceed to Poona and deliver the message.
Vrajlal Parekh was a very staunch devotee of Mataji. One day he saw in a dream, a temple to which Hindus, Christians, Muslims and Parasis and others were going. He saw at the top of the temple a board bearing the inscription. “Mai Markand Mandir”. He also saw a written command to this effect “Go to Poona and tell my son to install me”. Vrajlal knew the Founder and rightly understood that the message was meant to be conveyed to him. He promptly did so.
The messenger from Calcutta was also a religious man. One night when he was staying at Nagpur, he heard a Voice in his dream telling him: “Go to Poona and ask my son to install me”. Without a moment’s hesitation he went to Poona where after several unsuccessful attempts to get accommodation in various hotels and lodging houses finally he got a room in Guajarati Lodge. Weary, exhausted and almost beginning to doubt the wisdom of his hasty rush to Poona, he went to sleep. Immediately sleep overtook him, the Voice told him “Don’t worry. I have brought you to the man. Peep through the holes in your door into the next room. There you will find the man you have come to see”. The devotee jumped out of bed and peeped into the next room; a man was sitting there in a meditative trance. Not wanting to disturb a man in his meditation the ‘messenger’ made enquiries of the night-watchman of the lodge. The answer was “Can’t tell you the gentleman’s name. Everybody calls him Kaka. He is a Govt. Officer. He goes to bed very late. I have seen light burning in his room till 2 or 3 in the morning. He gets up only by 9 o’clock”.
The man from Calcutta had a friend living a few miles away. He thought of visiting the friend and coming back by the time Kaka काका got up. So he left by the early morning train to the nearest station. As ill luck would have it there was some disturbance in the locality the previous day and the police were rounding up all new comers with the result that our man was arrested on alighting from the train. His protestations of innocence were of no avail. Frightened, he thought of Kaka काका and began to repeat काका बचाओ ‘Kaka Bachao (Kaka save me). He was locked up for some time. The man was fervently and frantically repeating ‘Kaka bachao’ काका बचाओ.
In the evening the police, quite contrary to their usual procedure released him. Sad and unnerved, he went to sleep. The Voice, an Angry voice this time, asked him: “What, you did not have the time to do my bidding? Your repetition of Kaka bachao saved you. Go and pass my message at once”. Early the next morning he went to Poona, met Kaka and delivered the message. The recipient of the message asked the man his name. The other answered “My name has nothing to do with it. Kaka Bachao” काका बचाओ .
M. R. Ananatayya of Shimoga was the third messenger who was ordered in a dream to go to Poona and deliver the same message. He also implicitly obeyed the command, went to Poona, managed to find out the Founder and gave the message.
Many of you will feel amazed at the role that dreams have played in Mai-ism. It will be interesting to recall an instance of how a devotee’s dream at Madras was responsible for making the Sisters’ Social here in 1949 a success. Rev. Maiji knew only four or five persons in Madras at that time though there were several devotees. When the Founder asked them to arrange a Sisters’ Social they tried their best to get a suitable lady to preside over the function, but did not succeed. The Founder considered the idea of publishing a notice that Mother Mai would preside unless some of the ladies present voted one of them to the chair. However, a sister residing in Mambalam had a dream in which she was peremptorily asked to take an active interest in the coming social. The name of Smt. Ammanna Raja the then Deputy President of the Legislative Assembly was suggested for presidentship of the Social; the Mambalam sister told the sponsors about her dream and when at their request she approached Smt. Raja the latter agreed to preside.
Well, to proceed with the narrative, on receipt of the messages from Vrajlal, Anantayya and the repeater of Kaka Bachao the Founder laid down some impossible conditions on the happening of which he said he would declare Mai-ism and install Mai. All the conditions were fulfilled on 2-9-1932 at midnight. Then the Universal religion was formally declared. From that day he came to be known as Mai Swarupa Mai Markand. His disciples called him Maiji.
The important principles have been already described. The aim of MAI-ISM is to make man better and happier. With that end in view Mai-ism stands for the unification of all religions. Religious conflicts and intolerance have been a permanent stumbling block to all human progress, temporal and spiritual. Let us imagine God to be in the center of a circle and the followers of various religions on the circumference,
See figure I.
H is Hindu C is Christian M is Muslim. Only three are shown for the sake of clarity and brevity. All of them are going God-ward, each in his own way. The distance separating the religionists from one another gets reduced as they try to converge on the center and their mutual distrust becomes more evident. The result is a centrifugal force is automatically produced, a force that drives them away from the center where God is.
Now see figure 2; –
there, Universal Mai is at the center. Hindu, Christian and Muslim are her children. There is tolerance among the different religions and as they proceed Mai-ward a centripetal force, a force that draws them all to the center comes into existence,
Mai-ism is not one’s birth religion. It is to be adopted by one after attaining the age of discretion, not necessarily abandoning the religion of one’s birth. Thus now, there are Hindu Mai-ists, Christian Mai-ists, Parsi Mal-ists etc. Everyone is free to choose one’s evolutionary path. As pointed out by Earnest w General Welfare. (Bullettin 1961 Trowbridge England) :
“Mai-Swarupa, Santa Cruz Bombay sponsors a movement recognizing the Motherhood of God to bring balance in our ideas of the deity, religions to retain their individuality but to be united in the universal worship of one God and creator”. Ernest Kirk an Englishman who spent his whole life in India on religious work has written a scholarly book entitled. “The World’s Need and Mai ism” in which he says. “Mai-ism brings to all religions something in the heart of them all that is real and enduring”.
Mai-ism received international recognition within a short time. In 1955 Rev. Mai Swarupa was invited to participate in the World Peace Round Table conference in Japan.
His talk on Universal Mai-ism was so much appreciated there that within thirty days of the conference, The International Religious Federation (I. R. F.) took shape under the joint leadership of Him-self and Yonosuke Nakano the famous founder of Annai Kyo. The same year a Mai Sisters’ Social was held in Shimuzil city with sister Yoshiko Nakano as the president.
Universal religious alliance (U. R. A.) functioning in the west invited the Founder to attend their conference at Havana in 1959. Due to various reasons He could not go, but He sent a thesis on universal religion. Rev. Duchesse Blanche Ledran the Grand Chancellor of the U. R. A. explained the principles of Mai-ism to the General Assembly. 3800 persons from 96 countries attended the conference which during its deliberations paid glowing tributes to Mai-ism couched in these words: “We have received valuable literature from all parts of the world. We particularly recommend Mai-ism and the Mai-institute of Santa Cruz West, Bombay”. In the general elections that year Maiji was elected one of the Vice Presidents; He was given the portfolio of Peaceful Human Relations.
The issue of ‘Steps unto Him’ (Wiltshire, England) published in June 1960 carried the following item about Mai-ism: “Mai Swarupa Mai Markand, concerning whose work we wrote in a recent number has reminded us of the Raisen D’Etre of this movement which he prefers to call religion, not in the sense of a new form of Hierarchy. It has its object to bring nearer all religions into one harmonious whole. The idea is to provide a centre in the shape of a religion where that which unites could be shared and developed whilst each religion would retain its own forms and rituals. Mai-ism holds that there can be no such things as the last word. It welcomes and respects all that is best in every religion. It stands for the universality of God and keeps its doors open for changes of approach as the world evolves”.
- H. Om Lind, Baron Von Blomberg and Colin Unwin of Australia are a few among other distinguished outsiders who have greatly admired Mai-ism.
Adherence to Mai-istic principles and repetition of Mai-istic prayers have saved thousands from miseries and calamities. Instances are legion of diseases being cured, of prosecutions being averted, of bankruptcy in business being warded off, of childless couple being blessed with children etc., by the Grace of Mai being obtained through Mai-istic methods of prayer. It would take volumes to recount the innumerable instances of Grace.
I shall state only two instances of which I have personal knowledge.
Bro, Raman Menon a staunch Mai-ist was an officer in the bilingual state of Bombay. On May 1, 1960 the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat came into being. Hundreds of employees were transferred from Bombay to Ahamedabad from various departments. A list of persons to be transferred from Menon’s office had been prepared. He felt sad that his name was in the list. He tried his best to see that he was not sent away from Bombay but the list had been finalized. Some of his friends advised him to approach Maiji, but he declined to do so. Thereupon the friends took up the matter with the Founder informing Him that Menon was unwilling to trouble Maiji on such a trivial matter as transfer. Maiji at once said “I want Raman here. He will not go”. There was the usual delay in division of assets and liabilities between the two new states, Furniture, stock, cash, books and a hundred other items besides the personnel of various offices had to be divided. There was a dead line set up for completing the work of division. That was midnight of 30th April. At the stroke of twelve the two states would come into being. Lists of persons allotted to Gujarat had been prepared by the numerous offices in Bombay. Some lists had been mailed. A few lists including the one from Bro Menon’s office had not been sent by post. Zero hour was approaching. It was decided to transmit the names by telephone. Each name would be read out into the telephone at Bombay and would be copied down by somebody at Ahmedabad. The list from Menon’s office was the last
There were fifty names in the list. Menon’s number was 49. 48 names were called. The time was eleven forty-five p. m. on 30th April. Five minutes to go and two names. There was ample time. But suddenly the phone stopped working. Before midnight the last two names could not be read out into the phone. And Menon continued in Bombay. Call it chance; call it luck; call it what you will. It was really the Vachan Siddhi of Rev. Mai Swarupa operating. Several other instances of Maiji’s words coming true have happened.
Thirteen years ago an old lady of seventy-two developed two circular patches inside her cheeks, an inch in diameter and an eighth of an inch in thickness with a small depression in the middle. She could not eat food for severe pain. Her son took her to three good doctors. Each of them said it was most likely cancer and advised she should be taken to the Tata Memorial Hospital Bombay for treatment. The lady flatly refused to go to Bombay though there was another of her sons residing in Bombay who could very well look after her. Instead, she sought Maiji’s blessings and advice. She carefully followed Maiji’s instructions regarding repetitions of Mantra. In a few weeks she was completely cured. The lady lived for nine years more without any recurrence of the illness. I know every detail of the incident because she was my mother. It was I who took her to the three doctors.
Rev. Mai Swarupa merged in the Lotus Feet of Mai on 21 – 12 – 1966. But He has been and is with us guiding us consoling us and encouraging us. His spiritual successor the present Maiji has been doing the work of propagating Mai-ism and alleviating the misery of others with the guidance and blessings of the Founder in His discarnate state.
I appeal to you all, to take up Mai-ism seriously and live according to its simple tenets. I can assure you that you will be amply rewarded. Mai Maiji Bless you all.
Jai Mai Jai Markand Mai
Author: One Humble Mai Devotee : R. Menon.
Photos of Saint Mai Swarup Mai Markand: