People are confused by the story of Ajamil, not just in India, but all over the world. It is said of Ajamil that at the time of his death he called out to his son. His son’s name was “Narayana”. In the world, when someone is close to death, he will ask to see those he is most attached to one last time.
Ajamil was extremely impious and frequently associated with prostitutes, but he was very attached to his son. In the Bhagwatam it is written that after Ajamil called out for his son, he became unconscious. He had a vision that the messengers of God Vishnu and the messengers of Yamraj had come. They were debating with each other, and Ajamil overhead this. Yamraj’s messengers were saying, “He is a great sinner. We will take him to hell.” Vishnu’s messengers said, “No, you won’t. He took God’s name ‘Narayana’. You can’t take him.” In the end, the messengers of Vishnu had greater authority and chased the Yamraj’s messengers away.
In other words, after Ajamil uttered “Narayana”, the messengers of Vishnu saved Ajamil from death and they chased away the messengers of Yamraj. He was saved from death. Then, after listening to the debate between these two groups of messengers, Ajamil developed detachment and he went to Haridwar.
In Haridwar he engaged in devotion, and through this he attained God realization and received the divine vision of God. Then the messengers of Vishnu who had came before, came back again in a celestial car, but this time they came to take Ajamil to Vaikuntha abode.
The cause of our mayic bondage or liberation from Maya is the mind, not the senses. Therefore, if your mind is not lovingly attached to God when you repeat His name, nothing will happen. It is essential to add your feelings of loving remembrance for God when you engage in nam sankirtan or chanting.