Thursday, April 12, 2007

Brief Life Sketch of Bhagavan Ramana - 10

Hare Krishna Friends,

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Arunachalam, the sacred Hill, is the primal and foremost form of Lord Shiva. Indeed it is Shiva Himself. Sages not only show us the path, but also set an example by treading upon it themselves. In this manner, Bhagavan Sri Ramana Himself often did Arunachala-pradakshinam (walking barefoot around the sacred Hill having it at one’s right-hand side) in the company of His devotees. It is described in the puranas how this Giripradakshinam was the sole means by which Unnamulai Ambikai (Abhita Kuchalamba), the consort of Sri Arunachaleshwara, became Ardhanarishwari (when her form combined with that of the Lord). It was on the occasion of one such pradakshinam that Sri Bhagavan composed the renowned “Sri Arunachala Aksharamanamalai”. Many thousands of His devotees now recite this hymn as a means to remember Arunachalam, which bestows Liberation when merely thought of.

At Ramanashramam, the doors of the small Hall where Sri Bhagavan lived were open day and night, and to all. In a life such as His, which was shining as a vast open space of mere consciousness where was the necessity to hide Himself and how to do so? Even in the middle of the night devotees were free to go and see Him in the Hall. “Defects alone need to hide, a pure heart need not” is a wise saying of saint Auvayyar! To have the darshan of Sri Bhagavan was a great fortune which was not bound by any condition and which was open to all people and at all times. When He gave a warm welcome even to the thieves who came at night, saying, “You may come in and take whatever you want,” what better proof is required of Sri Bhagavan’s sense of equality?

It was at 11:30 in the middle of the night of the 26t of June 1924. Though at that time Sri Ramanshramam consisted of only a few thatched sheds, some thieves came thinking it to be a rich mutt. They tied to break in through the windows by smashing them, and threatened to destroy everything. The noise woke up the devotees who were sleeping in the shed where Sri Bhagavan was lying. Bhagavan invited the thieves to come in through the proper doorway and asked the devotees to give them a hurricane lamp so that they could look for whatever they wanted, yet they shouted angrily, “Where are you keeping your money?” “We sadhus who live by begging have no money. From what you can find here, you may take away anything that you want. We will come outside,” so saying, Sri Bhagavan came out of the shed. Fnding that there was very little for them to take, the thieves bet the Ashramites with sticks, and one blow even fell on the thigh of Sri Bhagavan. “If you are still not satisfied, beat the other thigh as well,” said Sri Bhagavan feeling sorry for them!

Was this to be the limit of His kindness towards the thieves? No, He also prevented a young devotee who, unable to bear the sight of Sri Bhagavan being beaten, jumped up with an iron bar in retaliation. Sri Bhagavan advised him, “Let them do their dharma (i.e.role). We are sadhus, we should not give up our dharma. In future, the world will blame only us if any wrong happens. When our teeth bite our tongue, do we break them and throw them away?”

“Though others do wrong to one, it is best not to return the same in wrath.”
-Tirukkural, verse 157

Some days later the police caught the thieves and brought them before Sri Bhagavan, and an officer asked Him to identify the one who had beaten Him on that night. Sri Bhagavan at once replied with a smile, “Find out whom I beat (in a previous birth), for it is he who has beaten me now!” He never denounced the criminal!

“Conquer the foe by your worthy patience and for ever forget the wrong done to you on account of ignorance.”
-Tirukkural, verse 157

“The right way of punishing the wrong-doer is to do good to him and to forget his wrong.”
-Tirukkural, verse 314

* * * * * * * * * * * *



Post a Comment

<< Home