I dedicate this blog to my teacher in the space of Esoterics and the Wiccan Brigade Chairperson, Ipsita Roy Chakraverti, who had encouraged me when I had expressed my wish to write about the unhappy life of a certain Meiti (Manipuri) queen, Mukta. This blog is completely based on the Wiccan Brigade psychic expedition to Shillong and my research work; and there is no intention of hurting anyone’s interests and sentiments. Through this blog, I am sharing my Shillong experience with those who may read and treat this story of the tragic protagonist with genuine empathy. Comments from only those who are serious about the paranormal or parapsychology are solicited.
As we were preparing ourselves for the much awaited Shillong psychic expedition, for me, the journey had commenced on Sunday - 31st December 2017. The Wiccan Brigade Chairperson and our teacher, Ipsita Roy Chakraverti, had a New Year’s gift for us - a psychic walk amidst the greenery around the Dhakuria Lake, Kolkata. Probably, the last day of the previous year had something different in store for me. Due to some strange vehicle issues, I missed the excursion and to kill time, I had landed up at a school friend's place where I was supposed to go after the walk was over.
Over a cup of tea, cakes and an oversized omelet, we were discussing about paranormal activities. It was then my friend, Ruchira's mother, Mitali Ghosh - who had spent her childhood at Shillong - told me about some strange facts that she had witnessed there when she was a child – how she, her mother and brother had lost their way in a forest, landed up at a heritage property (now turned into a hotel where we were supposed to stay during our Shillong psychic expedition), got to know about a beautiful Manipuri princess who got wedded into a certain royal family followed by her sad demise (she was supposed to have committed suicide), and later how they came back to their bungalow through the forest, unharmed. That day, some supernatural elemental force had shielded them from the tantrics who, during those days, used to practice black magic with dead bodies of women and children within the shroud of the forest.
It was very strange that Mitali auntie was unable to return to her home at Girish Park the previous evening for some irrelevant issues but she could actually go back after I had heard the story of the queen. It was very uncanny that I had missed the excursion and coincidentally had met auntie that day at Ruchira’s place. It was as if some tone setting was getting done before we reached Shillong. While returning home, the 55 years old story heavily played on my mind and somehow, I could not come to terms with the fact that the young queen had committed suicide. Sometime between 3:00 and 4:00 pm on the same day, while getting ready for my painting class, a strange vision flashed across my mind's eye and it gave me a clear idea that it was not a case of suicide but murder - a message that had a link to a lot many things after we reached the heritage property turned into a hotel on the evening of 13th of February 2018, which was also the day of Mahashivratri. The young queen whom auntie had seen in the bridal attire and the one whom I’d seen – were probably two different people with similar Mongolian features or maybe the same person. I am still unsure!
Tuesday - 13th February 2018:
We, eight travelers, led by our teacher Ipsita-di, started towards the Kolkata airport at 5:35 am from her Lake Road residence, post-ritual, which comprised some guidelines, a piece of some rare stone for protection, and a nice soft blanket that was meant for the bonfire organized on the second night at the hotel where we were staying.
We had landed at the Guwahati airport, at around 9:15 am, and after picking up our luggages by 9:30 am, we headed straight to the Greenwood Resort for breakfast. With our hunger satiated, we were again on the road - on our way towards the Sohliya Strawberry farm. The strawberry festival in Shillong happens during this time of the year. Locating the farm was not an easy task as it was set within small plantations of various crops in a forested area of the Rtiang village, between Guwahati - Shillong National Highway. The winding roads finally led us to a place that went downhill into the heart of a dense forest. During our walk, we could not find the Sohliya Strawberry farm but we witnessed and experienced certain things - explained by our teacher - more meaningful in the forest, amidst the sunlight that was streaming through the leaves and the fragrance of the fresh air, which had engulfed us. Finally we found the place, and after a sumptuous meal and some fresh strawberries for dessert, we were taken around by our host and were led to some of the cottages in the premises.
After Abhijit's (one of the fellow travelers) noting down of his contact details, we departed and once again unexpectedly, we were brought down to a stream. The crystal clear water running over quartz, jaspers and hematite rocks felt cold but soothing against the hands. Some of the members took off their shoes to wade inside the healing waters. Ipsita-di stood on the centre bed of small smoothened rocks and guided us through an ancient Vedic chant. The photographs captured strange lights - perhaps, the result of refraction of light due to the quartz energies. We departed with bags full of smooth edged quartz and jaspers - brimming with childlike excitement and full of energy.
From Sohliya Strawberry farm, we traveled and arrived at the circular portal like gate of the heritage property-cum-hotel, at Shillong, before 6:00 pm. The heritage property, belonging to a royal family from the north-eastern part of India, is set against a quiet backdrop with a strange silence shrouding it. The gate, covered with a thick layer of greenery, was aligned with a dimly lit long stretch of narrow walk (wide enough for our 12 seat travelers’ vehicle) that ultimately led us to the main section of the hotel. We took the room keys and were guided by the attendants to our respective rooms. Along with the modern amenities, there was a touch of antiquity everywhere - the warm hues of the yellow lights, the tall curtained windows, the traditional furnishings, including the dresser (probably a portal into another dimension) in the adjoining dimly lit bathroom, which gave an eerie feeling each time I looked at it. It was strange indeed that the dresser was not kept in our big spacious room, the reason of which we understood much later!
While my roommate, Saumyapriya went to take a shower, I decided to create an energy vortex on the floor with the roadside and riverbed quartz, hematite and jasper rocks. After that I went and flopped down on the sofa. I suddenly felt that I was not alone in the room. Someone invisible was present and I was seated there facing the entity. Immediately, I started clicking pictures of the room interiors hoping that something could be seen in the mobile camera image. There was a strange purple light over the room heater facing me. I instantly checked but found that nothing in the room was reflecting that light. We are always taught to be skeptical and apply our analytical mind till there is no further room for logical explanation. Later on while cross-checking with Ipsita-di I got to understand that in the Wiccan concept, the presence of spirits is denoted by purple coloured light.
Post-tea we both dressed up for dinner in the hotel premises and joined the rest at 8:00 pm, which was followed by some photo session. While having dinner we all were talking, and could feel the drop in the temperature of the well-lit dining hall. Ipsita-di perceived the apparition of a young lady checking Saumyapriya's earring, which I had lent her for dinner because it nicely matched with her outfit. We all got alert and immediately after dinner, we assembled in Ipsita-di' room for the 'Yogini' chant. After finishing the chant, the teacher asked us to focus on what we perceived. Sibashish, one of the fellow travelers, and I perceived a beautiful nymph like form bedecked in diamonds and in pale green outfit of a dancer. I thought her to be a yogini, and hearing that Ipsita-di closed her eyes and went into a meditative state. The next moment we saw a strange thing happening - someone communicated with us through our teacher who is a powerful psychic medium.
We were totally unprepared for that chance interaction with the soul of a deceased queen, 'Mukta', belonging to a royal family. The spirit communication sessions - over our three and half days’ stay from the evening of 13th to the morning of 16th February 2018 - had unraveled lot of mysteries about our past lifetime spent in the north-eastern part of India in the early 19th c. as well as the current lifetime. It was the time for a solar eclipse, which could be viewed from the Indian peninsula at 2:30 am between 15th and 16th of February. Particularly, this powerful solar eclipse was supposed to reveal the mysterious and unknown before bringing in transformations in human lives over the following six months. Astrologically, the impact of any solar eclipse starts a few months in advance.
Through the spirit communication sessions, I got to understand that I was a painter, probably a female companion of the queen who, to the dissatisfaction of the queen, did some commissioned work for the king. I was also asked if I could do her portrait in this lifetime. I agreed, though absolutely appalled due to the interaction about my past lifetime. I also got to understand that she was very sensitive towards the fact that I had learnt some traditional form of dance in that lifetime. For a moment, it was not clear if she was referring to the previous or current lifetime because in this lifetime too, I am a certified Kathak dancer but since I am completely out of touch with this art form, I don’t like to tell people about it. During the session, the information had to be concealed only to put a tab on her increasing aggression, at the mention of dance.
After the spirit communication session got over, Ipsita-di told me to paint her portrait after my return to Kolkata. We returned to our room and once again I had clicked photographs of the room interiors, but there was no sign of anything unnatural. The mystery of the dresser in the dimly bathroom probably got solved during our interaction with Mukta in our teacher’s room. We understood that she had got mirrors removed from her room when she was alive, and probably had succumbed to a state of depression. That night I had a good sleep knowing well that esoterically Ipsita-di would take good care of Mukta’s soul. I had no doubt about the fact that I had already seen her on 31st December 2017 and the reason for her murder was something else.
14th February, 2018:
Next day, we got dressed, met the rest of the travelers at 8:00 am and were discussing previous night's spirit communication session till Ipsita-di joined us for breakfast at 8:30 am. Our discussion continued at the breakfast table and we realized that we didn’t do the correct thing by concealing about my knowledge of dance. After stepping out of the dining hall Ipsita-di had communicated again with Mukta to psychically share with her the info regarding my knowledge and pacified her. Mukta was hurt about the fact that I had learnt dancing from a male teacher and had denied it. Strangely, in this lifetime too, my initiation into dancing was done by a male teacher, and later followed by by three more female teachers — Srilekha Mukherjee (had acted in dance sequences in some famous Bengali films), actress Shikha Baag (later on married into famous Bengali actor Ranjit Mullick’s family) and Manjushri Roy Choudhuri (the daughter-in-law of ace danseuse Dr Manjulika Roy Choudhury).
Post-breakfast, we had stepped out at 10:00 am for the Sacred Forest. The clouded skies, the sharp curves and the hairpin turns of the roads with pine and other trees; hills rich in minerals and limestone all around, finally brought us to the Mawphlang Sacred Forests. Located about 25 km away from Shillong, the Mawphlang Sacred Forests against the backdrop of the Khasi Hills, has, till date, retained its sanctity since the ancient times. Spread across 78 hectares of land, the groves are protected by the royal family of the Lyngdoh clan who believe that their deity goddess, Labasa protects their village. Before entering the forests, suddenly, one of the travelers noticed an earring on the ground where we were standing and I realized that in a very strange way mine had fallen. It was a sign that the queen Mukta was with us in the spirit form. A green tunnel formed by the branches and leaves led us inside the forests and the guide took us to various ancient and interesting spots. I won’t get into the interesting details but I must say that we were bade farewell with a mild drizzle as a blessing by the deities of the land – as the locals believe!
We had a heavy lunch on way back from the Sacred Forests, at Cafe Cherrapunjee, an 125 years old British 'Dak Bungalow' converted into a restaurant, and located amidst pine trees at Mawkdok, halfway from Shillong to Cherrapunjee. It dates back to the Imperial rule in India and was probably used as a post office and one of many dak bungalows where official horses were changed while traversing from Dhaka to Assam. The cold mysterious landscape looked somber and was engulfed in mist. One of the table mats on the dining table mentioned about an unidentified flying object (UFO) seen hovering over the Cafe. Shillong has sites that have monoliths and megaliths strewn across – a sign of connection with extra-terrestrial beings and other energy dimensions. We had experienced spirit activities during lunch — in form of knocking down and breaking of a glass, strange diffused light in the room (caught through my mobile camera), and a sudden fall of a dinner knife that was found lying in a strangely perfect parallel straight line on the floor between two of the travelers. Ipsita-di pondered upon the incident and said that probably Mukta had a connection with some aggressive knife activity when she was alive.
Even though Mukta had been psychically released in the Sacred Forests by Ipsita-di, she came back with us and refused to leave the old heritage property where she had resided in spirit form for ages. Ipsita-di was saying the previous afternoon that within 24 hours something auspicious (maybe the release of Mukta’s trapped soul was the auspicious thing that she had felt well in advance) will happen. I had noticed an orb (along with another faint one) in the photograph that I had clicked from my bus seat while returning to the hotel that evening.
We returned to our hotel between 5:00 and 6:00 pm, freshened up and got ready for dinner. It was then followed by the bonfire organized for us, at the backside, behind the window of our hotel room. It was a strange atmosphere beneath the veil of the starry night - at times the blanket seemed to fail to keep me warm despite my layers of warm clothes and the heat of the crackling fire, which was communicating something. We all stood with our teacher, trying to feel the warmth and were guided by her into ancient chants. After she sat down and paused for a while, we all surrounded her, eagerly waiting for her to utter some words of guidance. Then we realized that she was in a trance like state - she was in another dimension and messages poured in via her. Being one of the world’s best in the field of psychic mediumship/ channeling, Ipsita-di acted as a medium for both Mukta and the remaining consciousness of the deceased king (who—as per Mukta—has already reincarnated) simultaneously at that moment. Once again, we got to know about her unhappy life, about our Wiccan Brigade travelers who had been there in the north-eastern part of India and London when she was alive. Some were her siblings; some were her companions and associates. This time, during the spirit communication session, Mukta’s aggression was much under control even though the pain remained and she occasionally spoke with a touch of humour.
After the bonfire got extinguished, we went to our teacher’s room for the Yogini chant. Once again, Mukta communicated with us and lot of unknown facts and strange information came through Ipsita-di to us. We also got to understand that she was stabbed with a knife, which led to her death. Whatever I had sensed on 31st December 2017, regarding the Meiti (Manipuri) princess’ death, seemed to be correct. It was indeed a lifetime experience for me who had only read about spirit communication through channeling but never witnessed it earlier.
15th February, 2018:
Post-breakfast, we had set out for the Nartiang megaliths and monoliths site, at Jantia Hills by 10:00 am. Some of these vertical and horizontal monoliths — including dolmens (horizontal often roofed passageways) and menhirs (long vertical ones) — were huge in size compared to the rest; and each of them was an energy centre. Time stood still as we explored the site and learnt a lot of things from our teacher. From the Nartiang site, we went to the nearby Durga Temple, which is supposed to be one of the 51 Shakti Peethas (holy sites for the devotees of the ‘Shakti’ cult of Hinduism) mentioned in the Hindu Mythology. After we came back to the hotel, post-dinner (hosted by Ipsita-di), like the previous two nights, we got more information about Mukta’s life and ourselves through the spirit communication session.
16th February, 2018:
On the last morning of our expedition at Shillong, post-breakfast, we sat down with Ipsita-di on the nicely mowed grass behind our hotel—absorbing the atmosphere and observed her performing Shamanistic rites accompanied by some ancient Native American chants. Before we left for the Guwahati airport/ Kolkata at 11:00 am, some of us went upstairs to the loft like second storey of the hotel, to see the only oil painting (of a deceased queen) that had been hung on the hollow wooden wall. The moment Sibashish tried to settle it, somewhere at a distance a raven cawed — a sign of the spirit presence around us. We came back and later again went there with Ipsita-di. The atmosphere on the loft was cold, and grim and it reminded me of my vision that I had on 31st December 2017 — the face and dead body of a beautiful young Manipuri woman attired in bright red ‘uttoriyo’ and bedecked in jewels, suddenly hanging down from a wooden loft and staring into my face with widely open eyes (as if in a state of shock).
A strange feeling was prevailing within me before we had set out for the psychic expedition that our lives would undergo various transformations after we come back from the Shillong expedition. We left the place with a bit of sadness but deep within we knew that our lives will not be the same again after we land in Kolkata on Friday - 16th February evening, and probably it has already started.
At a Wiccan Brigade session. PC: AHAVA Communications
Mukta was a Meitei (Manipuri) queen who got wedded into a reputed royal family hailing from the north-eastern part of India. I had done some research before writing the historical background: keeping the political and cultural aspects in mind, the royal families of some of the north-eastern states of India had commenced the practice of getting into matrimonial alliances in the late 18th century and it continued into the 20th century. The Bengali Nobel Laureate, Kabiguru Rabindranath Tagore was close to three generations of a certain royal family and probably had written some verses keeping the tragic queen Mukta in mind. Through one of the spirit communication sessions held later, we got to understand that he indeed knew Mukta and the Wiccan Brigade travelers who had gone for the Shillong psychic expedition. Mukta had also communicated on the same lines. During one of the spirit communication sessions held at Shillong, it seemed that Mukta had narrated her own life while reciting the first four lines of Tagore’s song, which acted as a code for me before doing the mediumistic painting:
Shey kebol paliye beraye, drishti eraye, daak diye jaye ingitey,
Shey ki aaj dilo dhora gondhey bhora boshonter ei shongitey||
O ki taar uttoriyo ashok shaakhaye uthlo duli|
Aaj ki polashboney oi shey bulaye ronger tuli|
At a Wiccan Brigade session. PC: AHAVA Communications
The mediumistic painting, which I had been asked to do, was tough indeed; and I had based the portrait upon Ipsita-di’s feedback, my vision that I had on 31st December 2017, the thoughts that came to my mind, and on Mukta’s feedback that came through Ipsita-di’s psychic channeling. The ‘Mukta’ story doesn’t end here – she is still waiting to see justice being done to her by sharing her story with the masses, and my handing over her portrait to some people who were once closely related to her. Her painting will go to the right family (whoever she chooses) that will be blessed with abundance and prosperity (as per Ipsita-di’s insights)! My tarot card readings gave the same message. And I firmly believe that the painting will not remain with me forever.