Saturday, May 31, 2008

Arunachala Padigam

Verse 1

You it was who by your grace claimed me as your own. What would be my fate if now, you would not reveal yourself to me and I, still yearning for you, should perish in anguish in the darkness of this world? Can the lotus blossom unless it sees the sun? And you are the sun of suns. Your grace abounding swells and as a river overflows, O Love whose form is mighty Aruna Hill.

Verse 3

Lord, I had no idea of thinking of you at all. And yet you drew me with your cord of grace and stood as if resolved to kill me. Then what fault did I, poor I, commit that you should stop midway, your task unfinished? What more is needed? Why do you thus torture me, leaving me half-dead? O Arunachala, fulfill your plan and live for ever, You alone.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Tiger's prey

It is a different story for those Ramana charms totally, who are taken body and soul, in a no holds barred union. Such ones have no eyes except for that indescribable wonder, the Master's eyes. They cannot escape the bewitchment of His smile. Nothing matters to them, save to be His and let His Presence seep through every pore their body. The joy of self-forgetfulness, of oneness, fills their Being.

This mood, however, is not for keeps, nor even 'till death do us part'. Imperceptibly, bodily hunger, the demands of flesh, stage a virulent come back to the point of negating the joy of being Ramana's. It is certain that Ramana will not leave anyone by the roadside and that His succour would be there to strengthen and sustain. But in the intermediate stage when one is not steadfast in love for Ramana, many ego-traps of attachments seem to be there ready to lure one away. For, when the Sad-guru's tiger-like fangs begin to chew one's ego, the job is never done at one stroke. It is often left incomplete to be finished at a time which He alone knows to be the best. In this half-way house when one is tossed between the sensate and the spiritual, when one neither His nor the world's, one is inclined to pray sometimes 'Please stop being a magnet. Do not take me at all or take all.' It appears as if Ramana is aloof, withdrawn, unconcerned. Not that He is really, but the dryness, the slipping away makes one forlorn.

Sometimes then one cries out in 'where have you gone my God, forsaking me? One yearns and prays 'put out this fire, cool ocean of boundless grace, put out the fire of separation'. One finds 'Arunachala Padigam' replete with pleading to the Sad-guru not to 'stop mid-way and leave the task unfinished.

~ A. R. Natarajan, The Tiger's Prey, The Mountain Path

Thursday, May 29, 2008


Bhikshu: We have travelled far and wide in search of Enlightenment. How can we get it?

Ramana Maharshi: Through deep enquiry and confident meditation.

Hurst [Paul Brunton]: Many people do meditate in the West but show no signs of progress.

Maharshi: How do you know that they don't make progress? Spiritual progress is not easily discernible.

Hurst: A few years ago I got some glimpses of the Bliss but in the years that followed I lost it again. Then last year I again got it. Why is that?

Maharshi: You lost it because your meditation had not become natural (sahaja). When you become habitually inturned the enjoyment of spiritual beatitude becomes a normal experience.

Hurst: Might it be due to the lack of a Guru?

Maharshi: Yes, but the Guru is within; that Guru who is within is identical with your Self.

Hurst: What is the way to God-realization?

Maharshi: Vichara, asking yourself the 'Who am I?' enquiry into the nature of your Self.

~ The Mountain Path

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

absorbed in the Heart

The final chapter in their relationship began in 1916 when mother decided to place herself fully in the hands of her ascetic son. She came to Virupaksha cave and refused to budge. She just had to be in his physical proximity. Ramana too knew that the time had come for him to take over. Hence his consent for her staying with him over-ruling the ignorant protests of the inmates. In 1896, she had come to claim him as her son. Whereas now, she had come to surrender herself to him as her guru and entrust herself physically and spiritually to his custody. From then on, it was no longer a relationship between mother and son. It was that of a Sadguru and his disciple. The love showered by Ramana on all women made it clear to her that in his state, all women were his mothers and that there could be no special exception to this. Her orthodoxy got eroded, thanks to the daily lessons of Ramana's compassion which knew no distinctions. Azhagammal gradually evolved from being Ramana's mother into being the mother of the Ramana family to begin with. Later she blossomed as the universal mother. The master's devotees and the visitors were her children to be fed and cared for. Every needy person was her ward. When requested by her daughter Alamelu to come to her home for a house-warming function, she firmly said that her place was at Ramana's feet and that she did not care if Ramana threw her dead body into the bushes. She also told Ramana that she wanted to die in his arms. From these remarks it is clear that her faith in him was unqualified and complete. She was ready and could therefore profit fully from Ramana's spiritual ministration.

On the historic day, May 19, 1922, when she lay dying, facing death, Ramana took over the solemn assignment of liberating her from the travail of births. With his left hand placed on her head and the right hand on her heart, he sat for full twelve hours when mother was battling with her tendencies. Literally there was a fast forward of the experiences of her future life which she would have had to go through. The whole gamut was condensed into a few hours. She fought bravely, working out her karma. Ramana had in him the power to destroy the balance of karma. But he let mother battle it out for effort is necessary and inescapable till the last breath till one learns to hand over the baton to the Sadguru. This would serve as an example for all seekers who cannot afford to take it easy till effort is no longer possible. Thanks to the omnipotent power and grace of Ramana her life-force was absorbed in the Heart. She became a jivanmukta. Ramana had repaid his debt, and in what a way! He had rendered a service to the mother which is unparalleled in spiritual history!

~ A. R. Natarajan, The Mountain Path, Vol. 27, Nos. 1 & 2, May - June 1990

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Immediately he asked Him the question 'Who am I?'

In 1902 [Sivaprakasam Pillai] happened to visit Tiruvannamalai for the first time on some official duty, and there he heard of the saintly and ascetic life lived by a young boy on the Hill, whom all people referred to with great respect as Brahmana Swami. Sri Pillai at once climbed up the Hill to Guhainamasivayar temple, where the Brahmana Swami was then staying, and on seeing the divine lustre which shone in the face of the silent young ascetic, he felt strongly attracted to Him as a piece of iron to a magnet. Immediately he asked Him the question 'Who am I?' which had been haunting his mind for so many years. Little could he have known at that time, however, that the young Sage he saw seated quietly before him was born in this world with a divine mission to reveal the direct path of Self-enquiry, through which alone the true answer to the question 'Who am I?' could be experienced within the heart. Such is the working of divine Grace that the fit and worthy disciple had thus been automatically drawn to the proper Guru.

~ Michael James, The Mountain Path, Vol. 25, No. 1, January 1988

Monday, May 26, 2008

Bhagavan continued to speak about mukti and said, "Mukti is not anything to be attained. It is our real nature. We are always That. It is only so long as one feels that he is in bondage that he has to try to get released from bondage. When a man feels that he is in bondage he tries to find out for whom is the bondage and by that enquiry discovers that there is no bondage for him but only for the mind, and that the mind itself disappears or proves non-existent when turned inwards instead of outwards towards sense-objects; it merges into its source, the Self, and ceases to exist as a separate entity. In that state there is no feeling either of bondage or liberation. So long as one speaks of mukti he is not free from the sense of bondage.

~ Day by Day with Bhagavan

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Know first that 'I' and then you will know everything.

Also of importance is the fact that from the beginning Humphreys felt he was a disciple of Ramana. To quote him, "In a few sentences of broken English and in Telugu, he conveyed worlds of meaning and taught me direct, and made me his chela." In the spiritual field where attitude is so important for leaming, the reverential and fresh approach of Humphreys has given us much material of great value. Humphreys was barely twenty-one at the time he came to Ramana. So we notice an uninhibited spontaneity in his interviews with Ramana, and a special charm in the way Ramana clarified his doubts.

Some points stand out, such as Ramana's remarks:

"Help yourself, you will help the world";

"No master ever cared a rap for occult powers for he has no need for them in his daily life";

"From now onwards let your whole thought in meditation be not on the act of seeing nor on what you see, but immovably on That which sees";

"The Master cannot help being perpetually in the state of Being. He can use the mind, body and intellect without falling back into the delusion of separate consciousness";

"God is everything and everything is God";

"How can you best worship God? Why, by not trying to worship Him but by giving up your whole self to Him";

"You say 'I', 'I want to know'. Tell me who is that 'I'. Know first that 'I' and then you will know everything".

The teaching is always clear and precise, for Humphreys was ripe and ready to receive it.

We also owe to Humphreys some very beautiful descriptions of Ramana in such choice expressions: "For half an hour I looked him in the eyes, which never changed their expression of deep contemplation ... I could only feel that his body was not the man. He was merely a sitting, motionless corpse from which God was radiating terrifically ... You can imagine nothing more beautiful than his smile."

~ A. R. Natarajan, "F. H. Humphreys -- The First Western Seeker," The Mountain Path, Volume 29, Nos 3 & 4, December 1992

Saturday, May 24, 2008

If a pearl-diver remains on the shore of the ocean waiting for the roaring waves to subside, will he ever succeed in gathering pearls? If he plunges through the waves on the surface and dives deep into the ocean with a heavy stone tied to his waist, what waves will he find there in the depths? (Similarly, if we steadfastly dive beneath the waves of thoughts into the depths of our heart by keenly attending to the consciousness 'I', we will find that there are no thoughts there to disturb us).

58. Since a life of great peace exists deep within the ocean of our heart we should be completely indifferent towards the many tendencies (vasanas) which are tossing like heavy waves on the surface of that ocean, and with intense desirelessness (vairagya) we should dive deep into Self, the primal consciousness of our existence.

~ Sri Sadhu Om's Sadhanai Saram, translated by Sadhu Om and Michael James

Friday, May 23, 2008

Desirelessness and Devotion

To the extent to which the conviction grows stronger in us that all the extroverted activity of the mind is only misery, to that extent the desire and love to turn within will also increase. And to the extent to which the strength to attend to Self increases in us, to that extent the conviction will grow that attending to anything other than Self is useless. Thus each one of these two (namely vairagya or desirelessness towards external objects and bhakti or the love to attend to Self) is an aid to increase the other.

~ Sri Sadhu Om, Sadhanai Saram, verse 56

Thursday, May 22, 2008

An old woman bent double with age used to go round
and round Sri Bhagavan's hall and finally go near Bhagavan's
seat and loudly sing songs composed extempore by her. Her
spontaneous compositions used to pour forth effortlessly from
her extremely devoted heart. She was not a learned lady, there
night be some grammatical mistakes and errors in rhyme,
rhythm, etc. She used to thus sing her prayers daily for obtaining
the grace of Bhagavan.

One day Sri Bhagavan smilingly remarked that her songs
seemed to be much better than those of her son. Her son was a
scholar and from an ordinary point of view, the scholar's
compositions ought to be superior but for Bhagavan those arising
from the bottom of the heart with great devotion and emotion
are more pleasing. Are not the standards of judgement different?

~ The Silent Power

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Mother and Father

Mother He is and father too,
Apt for every kind of kinship.
Yes, apt and more than apt.
He is the womb from which are born
All moving things and things unmoving.
Dear child He is and cherished wealth,
Rich learning,wisdom ripe;
Blessed by the mouths that daily chant
Vedic hymns to mighty Rudra,
He dwells in the mind's eye
And the bright unbroken sky,
The light of lights that shines within
The deep heart's core;
All in One and One in all,
True seer in whom all Truth is seen,
Merciful, liberal giver of grace
Miraculously strong to save.
Yes, He is Mother and Father too.

~ Muruganar

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The greatest worship is worshipping the Guru's feet that are within oneself

A devotee once approached Bhagavan and asked him if he could prostrate to him and touch his feet.

Bhagavan replied: 'The real feet of Bhagavan exist only in the heart of the devotee. To hold onto these feet incessantly is true happiness. You will be disappointed if you hold onto my physical feet because one day this physical body will disappear. The greatest worship is worshipping the Guru's feet that are within oneself.

~ Living By The Words of Bhagavan, edited by David Godman

Monday, May 19, 2008

Ramana Maharshi's advice about his disciples taking on the role of guru

Bhagavan would always advise his disciples never to take on the onerous duty of being a guru. It would only lead to trouble. The disciples would expect all sorts of impossible things from their guru, and to satisfy them he would inevitably resort to trickery. Then, even if he could perform miracles they were things to be avoided as being impermanent and would only deflect him from the true path.

~ Arunachala's Ramana -- Boundless Ocean of Grace, Volume IV, p 120

Sunday, May 18, 2008

no need to think of anything else

Before becoming an attendant of Bhagavan I had talked to Him only once, soon after my arrival. One day I approached Bhagavan on the Hill side when He was alone, placed some fruits at His feet, prostrated myself before Him and asked Him: "How is the mind to be subdued?" Bhagavan graciously replied, "Look within where the mind is."

After that there was no need for me to think of anything else. Bhagavan was God for me.

Everything I did was done with care and dedication. For instance, I used to devote considerable time to wash the only two pieces of cloth Bhagavan had (loin cloth and a small towel), rinsing them many times in water, changing the water every time. I wanted the clothes to be spotlessly clean.

~ account by Vaikuntavasar in Arunachala's Ramana -- Boundless Ocean of Grace

Saturday, May 17, 2008

With madness for Thee hast Thou freed me of madness (for the world);
grant me now the cure of all madness, Oh Arunachala!

~ Aksharamanamalai, verse 66

Friday, May 16, 2008

Everything is only a concoction of time, space and
energy. All else is the trite talk of people who dislike the effort
of sadhana which takes them to the Self. This talk is based on
their dense ignorance of the Self. Only by persistent practice
and experience of sadhana, can one arrive at the truth that all
concepts of souls, world, and the cause thereof are just evanescent
shadows on the screen of Siva-Self-Brahman. (Ch.24, v.31)

~ The Essence of Ribhu Gita, translated by Prof. N. R. Krishnmoorthi Aiyer

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Just as a steady boat, O Rama, is obtained from a boatman, so also the method of crossing the ocean of samsara is learnt by associating with great souls.

The great remedy for the long-lasting disease of samsara is the enquiry, 'Who am I?, to whom does this samsara belong?,' which entirely cures it.

Not a day should be spent in a place which does not possess the tree of a wise knower of Truth with its good fruit and cool shade.

~ Yoga Vasistha Sara, Verses 4, 5, 6

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Have you brought a big vessel to take the upadesa with you?

Ammani Ammal, a lovely person of ripe old age with bent back, in white saree, lives at Ramana Nagar. She was serving the Ashram by lighting lamps in the temple, etc, but due to old age preferred to live all by herself -- such is her astute vairagya! (She has not agreed to receive food from the Ashram.) I succeeded in making her talk about her first conversation with Bhagavan. This is what she said:

"In the thirties I had darshan of Bhagavan, when I visited Him along with my mother. After that I could not stay at home any longer. Without informing my parents I ran away and arrived at the Ashram. I was very young then. I prostrated to Bhagavan and asked:

'Bhagavan! Give me upadesam!' Bhagavan gave a beautiful smile and said: 'Have you brought a big vessel to take the upadesam with you?' He stretched both His hands wide open to symbolise a big vessel! I was standing still. Then for a full fifteen minutes Bhagavan looked at me with intense compassion and grace. I experienced wave after wave of bliss; I was thrilled! This experience I never had in my life, either before or after. Summoning all my courage, I again asked Him: 'Swami! May I stay here, for good?' Bhagavan replied, 'I do not ask anyone to come here, neither stay here nor go out. Thiangs happen according to one's praptam (destiny).' I did not understand then what it all meant; now I know that it was that look of Grace which made me stick to Him and stay at His lotus feet till today.

Bhagavan is God. He is Compassion Suprme. His reply would appear as if He did not take up the responsibility of my stay here. But see, without His Grace could I have stayed here for the rest of my life till today, all alone?"

When I asked her: "If Bhagavan did not recommend your stay at the Ashram, what did you do?" She replied, "What do you mean? Bhagavan's one look was enough. The Grace started working. Immediately, Echamma took me to her house and I began living there. Then I moved to a cottage in front of the Ashram. To stay near Bhagavan, to look at His bliss-filled face and to listen to His exquisitely sweet voice was all I wanted and that I got in abundance!" I saw in her eyes the light of life's fulfillment.

~ V. Ganesan, The Mountain Path, Vol. 22, No. 1, January 1985

Monday, May 12, 2008

What is Guru's Grace?

D.: What is Guru's Grace? How does it work?

Sri Ramana Maharshi: Guru is the Self.

D.: How does it lead to realisation?

M.: Isvaro gururatmeti … (God is the same as Guru and Self …). A person begins with dissatisfaction. Not content with the world he seeks satisfaction of desires by prayers to God; his mind is purified; he longs to know God more than to satisfy his carnal desires. Then God's Grace begins to manifest. God takes the form of a Guru and appears to the devotee; teaches him the Truth; purifies the mind by his teachings and contact; the mind gains strength, is able to turn inward; with meditation it is purified yet further, and eventually remains still without the least ripple. That stillness is the Self. The Guru is both exterior and interior. From the exterior he gives a push to the mind to turn inward; from the interior he pulls the mind towards the Self and helps the mind to achieve quietness. That is Grace. Hence there is no difference between God, Guru and Self.

~ Talk 198

Sunday, May 11, 2008

He who turns inward with untroubled mind to search where the consciousness of ‘I’ arises, realizes the Self, and dissolves in Thee O Arunachala! Like a river when it joins the ocean.

~ Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi, Five Stanzas to Sri Arunachala, verse 3

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Question: We have to live in the world and deal with people, many of whom will try to take advantage of us. Being quiet and detached is one thing, but should we be so quiet and uninterested that we allow other people to take advantage of our passivity?

Annamalai Swami: You can be quiet within and be tough on the outside, if that is the role you have to play in the world.

There is a story about a snake that lived under a bush by the side of the street. Whenever people passed by the bush, the snake made a lot of noise and tried to bite them. It gave lots of trouble to anyone who came near.

One day a wandering sadhu passed the bush and the snake, as usual, put on an aggressive show of behavior.

The sadhu, who could communicate with animals, said, 'Keep quiet and don't bite people. You don't have to trouble the people who walk past.'

The snake heeded the advice and from that day on its behavior completely changed. It sat quietly under its bush and never troubled any of the people who walked past.

Within a few days the local people realised that the snake was no longer a threat to them, but instead of being relieved, they would throw stones at the snake, or try to chase it away. People have this instinctive response to snakes. Whenever they see one, they feel compelled to commit some act of violence against it. The snake ignored the provocation for a while but it soon realised that this new state of affairs was not an improvement on the previous one.

A few days later the sadhu came by and asked how the snake's new lifestyle was going.

'Not so good,' responded the snake. 'I am suffering a lot on account of your advice. I am being very calm and I am not giving any trouble to anyone, but because of my calmness and sadhu-like behavior, people are taking advantage of me by throwing stones at me and harassing me. They would never do this before because they knew I might retaliate and bite them.

The sadhu thought about this for some time and then spoke.

'I advised you to be calm and not trouble anyone, but that doesn't mean that you have to sit here passively while people come along and hurt you. When people come to cause you trouble in the future, just pretend that you are going to bite them. You can be angry on the outside, but on the inside you can still be calm.'

From then on the snake adopted the new tactic of hissing at everyone who came past his bush, just to let them know that he was still a potential threat. This was enough to make people give him a wide berth.

We can all be like this if circumstances demand it. There are occasions when a show of anger is needed. We can play the role of being angry, but at the same time we can know that we are just acting out a role that is needed at a particular moment. Internally we can be peaceful while all this is going on.

~ Annamalai Swami, Final Talks, Edited by David Godman

Friday, May 9, 2008

is samsara within or without?

During the early days of my arrival here, on one day at about 3 o'clock in the afternoon, a middle-aged Andhra, who had come recently, asked Bhagavan, "Swami, as I repeat Rama Namam (the name of Rama) regularly every morning and every evening for an hour, other thoughts come in, one by one, increase from time to time and ultimately find that I have forgotten my japam. What shall I do?"

"At that time catch hold of that name (Rama Namam)," said Bhagavan.

We all laughed. Poor man! He felt grieved and said, "The reasons for these interruption is the samsara (family), is not it? I am therefore thinking of abandoning the samsara."

Bhagavan said, "Oh! Is that so? What really is meant by samsara? Is it within or without? Wife, children and others," he said. "Is that all the samsara? What have they done? Please find out first what really is meant by samsara. Afterwards we shall consider the question of abandoning them," said Bhagavan.

He could not reply and so kept quiet.

Bhagavan's heart was full of compassion. With a look full of tender kindness he said, "Supposing you leave your wife and children. If you are here this will become another kind of samsara. Supposing you take to sannyasa. Another kind of samsara comes into existence in the shape of a karra (walking stick), kamandalu (water bowl) and the like. Why all that? Samsara means samsara of the mind. If you leave that samsara, it will be the same thing wherever you are. Nothing troubles you."

Poor man! He mustered up some courage and said, "Yes, that is it, Swami. How to give up that samsara of the mind?"

Bhagavan said, "That is just it; you said you were doing the japam of Rama Namam. During the train of thoughts, you said you were sometimes reminded of the fact that you had forgotten the japam of Rama Namam. Try to remind yourself of that fact as often as possible and catch hold of the name of Rama frequently. Other thoughts will then slowly decrease."

~ Suri Nagamma, Letters from Sri Ramanasramam,1 December, 1945

Thursday, May 8, 2008

WE approach the Guru in the restlessness of our
mind and find no satisfaction in anything done
or achieved. He gives us His benign look of Grace; in
that one look is the real touch of Grace. His proximity is
the harbour of Peace, in Him you find your haven of
safety. He is the healer of all sores in you. You seem to be
melted and lost in Him. You are now still. The Guru says,
"Be still, and Know that I am God." This knowing is the
understanding of the absolute and relative values of Life.

Understanding what? It is the distinctive knowledge
(the vijnana) of the eternal unchanging Truth of your self.
In the background of this eternal and unchanging Truth,
the changeful and varying states of your doership move
about and cloud your understanding of the Real Truth of
your Being.

To put this more clearly, in the words of Sri Bhagavan,
"You are the Self (atman)." Now no one will deny he is
the Self, the eternal changeless basis of himself. This Self
is Pure Being, conscious of Itself. It is Pure Bliss, in the
sense that in Itself it is not touched or affected by the
pleasures and pains of your varying states. Know to fix
yourself as this Self, and to abide as such, unmoved by the
fluctuating feelings of pain and pleasure, which pass and
re-pass before you, the unaffected Self.

~ At The Feet of Bhagavan

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

right action

All that is done in an Ashram, all that that is done for the Master, must be done with love, no matter what it is. He who does some task, such as sweeping the floor, watering the plants, or helping in a ritual, must execute it remaining free from anxieties, with a pure heart and full devotion. Only in this way will the action be right without interference of the profane ego, and there will be no attachments to the fruits of actions.

~ Maha Krishna Swami, Years in the Presence of Ramana My Master, edited by A. R. Natarajan

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

think of me and you will be alright

I had also at this time a more serious trouble. I had been practising breath control (pranayama) as taught by Swami Ramtirtha in his works. There came a stage when I felt a terrible sensation as though my head would crack and break into pieces. Then I stopped doing it, but every day the sensation was recurring at the time of practice and the fear was growing that disaster was imminent. So, at dead of night, when Bhagavan was alone, I approached him with my tale. He said laughing, "What! Again you are seized with fear! These are the usual experiences of people who do yogic exercises without the immediate guidance of a Guru, but having come to me, why should you fear?"

Then Sri Bhagavan added in an undertone: "Next time you get that sensation, you think of me and you will be all right." From that moment to this I have never felt it again.

~ G. V. Subbaramayya, Sri Ramana Reminiscences (As I Saw Him, from The Maharshi)

Monday, May 5, 2008

Those who have a stony heart,

who are great sinners,

who every day in this world

commit uncountable sins,

if they would only once utter the name ‘Annamalai’,

the name of birth itself,

which comes like a flood,

will depart.

~ Guhai Namasivaya

To read an interesting account of how this (and other verses) came to light please see this.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

The way to reform the world is to reform oneself in such a way that reality shines in the Heart.
Before attempting to enquire into and know the way to reform the world, subjugate and destroy your insurgent mind.
Without first filling your own heart [with Self-knowledge], what aid can you give, and to whom?
Those who do not have the power to redeem themselves cannot render genuine service to the beings of the world.

~ from

Friday, May 2, 2008

To look for God ignoring Thee who art Being and Consciousness is like going with a lamp to look for darkness. Only to make Thyself known as Being and Consciousness, Thou dwellest in different religions under different (names and) forms. If (yet) they do not come to know Thee, they are indeed the blind who do not know the sun. O Arunachala the great! Thou peerless Gem, abide and shine Thou as my Self, One without a second!

~ Sri Ramana Maharshi, verse 4, Sri Arunachala Ashtakam

Thursday, May 1, 2008

The gaze of the Lord


Subduing me and bringing me under his control, he drew my consciousness to himself with the irresistible magnet of his grace. From the profound depths of his mauna, his gracious glance cleaved the knot of my ego’s ruinous cravings in an instant. How great is the power of his piercing gaze!


Lost in the fruitless round of birth and death, I surrendered before my Master and my heart became clear and serene through his gracious gaze. Then, through the luminous spiritual practice in which I embraced his holy feet as the true path, I merged with the nature of the Real, so that the disastrous error [of forgetting my true nature] was no more.


Through the forgetfulness [pramada] that arose through the error of failing to enquire what was truly real, I revelled in the illusory existence of the physical body. But the Lord, through his glance of grace, united with my consciousness, and brought me into harmony with true existence, the fullness of the open sky [of the Self].

~ Sri Muruganar, from the forthcoming Sri Ramana Guru Prasadadam, translated by Robert Butler and Dr T. V. Venkatasubramanian

Please see David Godman's new blog to read more of this work.