“Years ago, I was anxious to put on weight,” Sri Yukteswar told me (Paramhansa Yogananda). “During convalescence after a severe illness, I visited Lahiri Mahasaya in Benares.
“‘Sir, I have been very sick and lost many pounds.’
“‘I see, Yukteswar you made yourself unwell, and now you think you are thin.’
“This reply was far from the one I had expected; my guru, however, added encouragingly:
“‘Let me see; I am sure you ought to feel better tomorrow.’
“Taking his words as a gesture of secret healing toward my receptive mind, I was not surprised the next morning at a welcome accession of strength. I sought out my master and exclaimed exultingly, ‘Sir, I feel much better today.’
“‘Indeed! Today you invigorate yourself.’
“‘No, master!’ I protested. ‘It was you who helped me; this is the first time in weeks that I have had any energy.’
“‘O yes! Your malady has been quite serious. Your body is frail yet; who can say how it will be tomorrow?’
“The thought of possible return of my weakness brought me a shudder of cold fear. The following morning I could hardly drag myself to Lahiri Mahasaya’s home.
“‘Sir, I am ailing again.’
“My guru’s glance was quizzical. ‘So! Once more you indispose yourself.’
“‘Gurudeva, I realize now that day by day you have been ridiculing me.’ My patience was exhausted. ‘I don’t understand why you disbelieve my truthful reports.’
‘Really, it has been your thoughts that have made you feel alternately weak and strong.’ My master looked at me affectionately. ‘You have seen how your health has exactly followed your expectations. Thought is a force, even as electricity or gravitation. The human mind is a spark of the almighty consciousness of God. I could show you that whatever your powerful mind believes very intensely would instantly come to pass.’
“Knowing that Lahiri Mahasaya never spoke idly, I addressed him with great awe and gratitude: ‘Master, if I think I am well and have regained my former weight, shall that happen?’
“‘It is so, even at this moment.’ My guru spoke gravely, his gaze concentrated on my eyes.
“Lo! I felt an increase not alone of strength but of weight. Lahiri Mahasaya retreated into silence. After a few hours at his feet, I returned to my mother’s home, where I stayed during my visits to Benares.
“‘My son! What is the matter? Are you swelling with dropsy?’ Mother could hardly believe her eyes. My body was now of the same robust dimensions it had possessed before my illness.
“I weighed myself and found that in one day I had gained fifty pounds; they remained with me permanently. Friends and acquaintances who had seen my thin figure were aghast with wonderment. A number of them changed their mode of life and became disciples of Lahiri Mahasaya as a result of this miracle.
“My guru, awake in God, knew this world to be nothing but an objectivized dream of the Creator. Because he was completely aware of his unity with the Divine Dreamer, Lahiri Mahasaya could materialize or dematerialize or make any change he wished in the cosmic vision.
“All creation is governed by law,” Sri Yukteswar concluded. “The ones which manifest in the outer universe, discoverable by scientists, are called natural laws. But there are subtler laws ruling the realms of consciousness which can be known only through the inner science of yoga. The hidden spiritual planes also have their natural and lawful principles of operation. It is not the physical scientist but the fully self-realized master who comprehends the true nature of matter. Thus Christ was able to restore the servant’s ear after it had been severed by one of the disciples.”