Mahasamadhi (a realized saint’s conscious final exit from the physical body) and thus prepared his disciples brilliantly well in advance. He left the physical body in August 2002 in South India. Here are some of his words in relation to Mahasamadhi—his own and other sages—that he shared over the years.
When I leave my body I will continue to guide you from a higher level. When you are in the Guru’s physical presence you think that the guidance is coming from the physical side. No, spiritual help need not depend on the physical body. If that is so, then Jesus and Buddha will not be helping anybody anymore. On the other hand, it is mostly after their physical death they seem to be doing a lot of work. When the body is not there then you begin to understand something beyond that body. Most of the teachers became well-known and were able to help most of the disciples after their physical death.
Physical death is not the culmination of the journey. Lord Jesus in his own life demonstrates that. It’s the body that got crucified but nobody can touch the astral or spiritual body. The spiritual body is still in the physical body. It almost like I’m wearing a robe. Your perception stops at the robe and you couldn’t go beyond that. But when I take this robe out, then you are able to see something more inside; something more real. Once the physical body is gone, then those who have the capacity to see, will see the spiritual body. It is the spiritual body that is able to go anywhere and everywhere, moving freely.
When we are out of this body we realize how happy we are. We realize the whole universe is ours. You can go wherever you want. Here in the body, if I want to go from one place to another place, I need a car, a plane, this and that. I can’t even travel easily. If I want to pick up something, I am limited by what is within the reach of my body, that’s all. My hand cannot reach farther. But when I am out of this body I can reach anywhere and everywhere. Space and time mean nothing in that level.
The Bhagavad Gita clearly states, “The Self cannot be wetted by water, burnt by fire, cut by a sword.” When the body is dead, the spirit is not dead. So here we see the immortal principle, the immortality of the soul. The Thirukkural says, “Death is like a bird breaking the shell and it comes out and flies away.” A bird will not be happy if it is confined in that little eggshell. One day it has to pry it open, break it and fly out. So, a soul wants to soar but the body is a fetter.
Another example given in the Thirukkural is that the bird was in the cage and people only saw the cage. But when the cage got broken the bird flew away. You may say the bird got resurrected. It was completely covered by the cage. You were not able to see the bird inside. Once the cage got broken you are able to see the bird flying away.
Evolved souls, enlightened beings like Jesus and other great sages and saints, when they depart from the body they can easily reach everybody. They can do more great things than they did while they were in the body. The time will come when I will no longer be confined in the body and can easily reach everybody. Then you people will see what great things will happen.
You should be able to receive the Guru’s guidance from a higher level. When would you be able to do that? When you have that communication. You communicate with his astral and spiritual body, with his thoughts, with his Teachings. You may not see me but you know what I would be telling you in a given circumstance, is it not so?
The Guru-disciple relationship never ends. It’s always there. Whether the Guru leaves the body, or the disciple dies. That relationship is eternal and Guru and disciple can never be separated.
In every incarnation the same Guru may appear in a different form. That’s why many a time when you meet your Master, or when he meets you, you feel that you have known him for ages. You don’t see him as a new, unknown person. But these memories are not vivid because of the change of the body. But if the mind is very clear you can have vivid memories of that.
Remember you will never be without me, never! The body may go, but I am always with you. Always!”