26th November, 1945
(6) IN SERVICE OF THE SAGE
When I went to the Ashram for the early morning Veda
Parayana everyone was terribly busy. The kitchen presented
a picturesque appearance, some cooking, some cleaning,
some giving orders, everyone busy with one thing or another.
Puliyodara, dadhyonnam, pongal, vadai, chips, puries and kootu
and ever so many eatables were filled into baskets and sent
up the hill. The Sarvadhikari does not appear to have had a
wink of sleep the whole night. He is the person who has
taken all the trouble.
Lord Krishna is reported to have stopped the celebration
of the annual Indra Yajnam performed by the shepherds and
instead arranged for the worship of the Govardhana Giri itself.
When you saw the series of baskets going up the hill it appeared
as if Sri Ramana had arranged this worship of Arunachala in
place of the vana samaradhana of the Amala Tree (garden
festival) performed annually during the month of Karthika.
After Veda Parayana, Bhagavan had his bath and
breakfast and started for Skandasramam accompanied by
Rangaswami, who is like Nandi to Lord Siva. Leading the
way, Bhagavan went up the hill to Skandasramam as if he
was going to his own home.
Without giving the least inconvenience to Bhagavan the
devotees proceeded in several groups and reached
Skandasramam. Aunt Alamelu (sister of Bhagavan) and
myself followed. Some other women got to the destination a
little late. Being surrounded by the devotees Bhagavan was
seated comfortably under the pleasant shade of the trees
just in front of the Skandasramam building. This showed
what a Rishiasramam is generally like. This Ashram was just
like Badarikasramam of old as described in Harivamsam
though the latter could not now be witnessed direct. This
Skandasramam like Badarikasramam provided a visual feast
with its water coming out of the rocky fountain, resembling
the sandhyarghya jalam (the oblations at dawn and dusk) of
Samyameswara and warblings and melodious notes of the
birds sounding like the musical hymns of Sama Veda as sung
by rishikumaras (the sons of seers). Apart from the many
sadhakas and sannyasins present, lawyers and doctors,
engineers and artists, newspaper correspondents and poets,
songsters and a good many others arrived from Madras,
Pondicherry and Villupuram. The young and old, the men
and women and all without distinction of high and low,
squatted on the ground around Bhagavan looking at him
with a fixed gaze. While the Arunagiri abounding in mineral
wealth served as the precious jewelled-throne, the clouds
adorning the sky served the purpose of Sveta Chhatram (the
white Umbrella) and the tree grove with innumerable
branches acted as vensamarams (fans used in deity worship).
Sri Bhagavan shone in his glory as an emperor crowned,
while Prakritikanta (Nature personified) waved lights to him
with its agreeable rays of the sun.
Brother! How can I draw that picture for you? The
Maharshi is calm and his serene gaze, coming from the source,
pervades all corners. His gentle smile shone like the cool rays
of the moon. His words simply rained amrit. We sat there like
statues without consciousness of the body. The photographers
then attended to their job. After 9-30 a.m. the usual daily
programme of the Ashram below, relating to mails, newspapers,
etc. was gone through as in a Maharaja’s durbar. The clouds
then increased and the wind blew heavily. The devotees gave
Bhagavan a shawl with which he covered his whole body except
the face. Then Bhagavan, in his sitting posture, looked like his
mother Alagamma incarnate. Aunt and myself were of the same
opinion. This scene was also photographed.
Sri Bhagavan preached for some time in silence in the
“gurosthu mouna vyakhyanam” (the Guru explaining by mere
silence) way. There may certainly be some pure-hearted souls
that could all become “chhinna samsayah” (cleared of all
doubts). But in my case, my mind ran to the preparations
like puliyodara and dadhyonnam, etc., as it was lunch time.
The question was whether everything was offered to the hill
or anything was left behind. The doubt was solved after
11:30 in the forenoon. My brethren wished to arrange the
delicacies for Bhagavan separately in a comfortable place.
But would he agree to that? He got a table arranged by his
sofa and feasted there in the midst of all.
After the meal, his sofa was set up on the verandah,
which has an iron-grating enclosure. The devotees were at
first at a distance but in a few minutes came near to Bhagavan.
Aunt Alamelu and I with some other women were seated in
an adjacent room looking at Bhagavan through a window
just opposite to his lotus feet. He then began to talk, telling
us short stories about his past life on the mountain, relating
the arrival of the mother, the construction of Skandasramam,
the water supply, the supply of provisions, the rule of the
monkey kingdom, the peacock dances, his association with
serpents and leopards. During this discourse he greeted a
new entrant, the poet Naganarya, by enquiring, “When did
you come?” Turning towards me he observed, “Here he
comes.” I replied, “Yes.” Then something was recalled to his
mind and he said, fixing his resplendent gaze, “There mother
had her nirvana (left her mortal frame). We made her sit
there outside. Still no mark of death was visible in her face.
Like one seated in deep samadhi, divine light was seen in a
holy dance. There, just there, where you are now sitting.”
His enchanting words entered my ears like the sweet
note of the Venu (the divine flute). I stood at this place worth
seeking and heard the words worth hearing. What a glorious
day is today!
Kapila liberated Devayani by initiating her into the
Reality. Dhruva put Sunita on the path of salvation. Sri Ramana
in his turn not only vouchsafed the eternal empire of freedom
and bliss to his revered mother but also did the highest honour
by installing the Mathrubhuteswara Lingam on her samadhi
to make her glory permanently extolled in the world.
On hearing the word “Mother” from the mouth of
Sri Bhagavan, I was overcome with ecstasy and tears filled
my eyes. It sounded as though the words about the mother
were uttered to the daughter. Mahatmas always honour
women. They view woman as the mother and love in perfect
form. There is no creation without nature. Before the arrival
of the mother there was no cooking in the Ashram. The
mother came and gave a hearty meal to the residents. The
agnihotra (fire) first instituted by the mother does the cooking
even today and fills the bellies of thousands of devotees.
I turned round to see the photo of that revered mother
but, being disappointed on finding none, said silently within,
“O Mother, that brought glory to womanhood in general!
We are blessed!” In the meanwhile various kinds of delicacies
were served. Half an hour after we ate them, puri and koottu
were given. After helping ourselves we began to go back.
After seeing us all off one after another, Bhagavan came down
from the throne of Arunagiri accompanied by his attendants
and, walking slowly, reached the Ashram at its foot just as
the sun sank behind the mountain on the west. Then the
routine programme of Veda Parayana, etc., was gone through
వినవలె కనవలెగా కే
యనువున వ్రాయంగవచ్చు నన్నా | వినుమా
యనుపమ తేజుని మహిమలు
వనజజుఁడే చెప్పుగాక వశమే నాకున్ ||
May the powers of the Mahatma be heard and seen direct.
Listen! Can they be transcribed in true perspective?
Is it possible for any one to do it?
Let Brahma alone do that job.