I got my realisation in the UK when I was seven years old, in 1975. My father sometimes used to bring me to London for the weekend. He first met Shri Mataji about that time, and said I was going to meet this very special Indian lady. I had never met an Indian lady, but Shri Mataji was very different from what I imagined because an Indian lady, to me, would have been a distant person in a sari. She was a quite remarkable lady who was very friendly, so instead of not knowing what to do because She was a strange adult, it was rather fun.
Mother came alive with children and said something like, ‘Really?’ She got their attention and made them feel comfortable and created this instantaneous connection. She asked me questions and Her eyes lit up and there was a huge smile and for some mysterious reason, I can’t remember why, one time I decided I had to be an elephant. It was in the flat in Gower Street where there were some wickerwork drink containers to put your drinks inside. I turned them upside down and stuck them on my feet and roared around the room pretending to be an elephant.
When I did this, Mother just pitched Her head back and laughed and laughed. My father was horrified, sort of, ‘Oh no, what’s he doing?’ but Shri Mataji really brought the situation alive and there was no anxiety or anything like that.
It was great being a kid. With Shri Mataji, you didn’t have to think, ‘Do I have to be this or that?’ You just were.