Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Sivam-Sundaram (Bliss and Beauty)

The wife of the Zamindar of Peddapavani, a frequent visitor to the Ashram, came with her children last month.

She stayed for a month and went away a couple of days ago. One evening, after Veda Parayana, she approached Bhagavan and said, “Sometime back Bhagavan gave me darshan in my dream and gave me upadesa. After that, I realised my Self, but it is not steady. What should I do?”

Bhagavan: (amused) “Where has it gone without being steady? Who is it that is not steady?”

Zamindarini: “That (realisation) is not steady.”

Bhagavan: “Where has it gone without being steady.”

Zamindarini: “That experience which I had does not remain steady because of bodily ailment and family worries.”

Bhagavan: “I see. Say so. Those that come, come. Those that go, go. We remain as we are.”

Zamindarini: “You must bestow on me the strength to remain as I am.”

Bhagavan: “You have realised the Self, have you not? If that is so, all the others disappear of their own accord.”

Zamindarini: “But they have not disappeared.”

Bhagavan (smiling): “I see. They will disappear. Vasanas have for a long time built their nests within. If we realise that they are there, they will disappear gradually.”

Zamindarini: “Bhagavan must bestow on me the strength to make them disappear.”

Bhagavan: “We will see.”

The next day about the same time she stood humbly in the presence of Bhagavan and said, “Bhagavan, it is not possible for a married woman to stay on in the presence of
the Guru for any length of time, can she?”

Bhagavan: “The Guru is where one is.”

Zamindarini: (still unconvinced) “Should one look upon the whole world as Brahman or should one look upon one’s own Self as the most important?”

Bhagavan: “We exist. And the world is Brahman itself. What then is there to look upon as Brahman?”

She was taken aback and stood still. Whereupon Bhagavan looked at her compassionately and explained further: “As you know we undoubtedly exist. The world also exists as Brahman. That being so, what is there that one could see as Brahman? We should make our vision as the all-pervading Brahman. Ancients say, ‘Drishtim jnanamayim kritva pasyeth brahmamayam jagat’. The world is as we see it. If we see it as material, it is material. If we see it as Brahman, it is Brahman. That is why we must change our outlook. Can you see the picture in a film without the screen? If we remain as we are, everything adjusts itself to that attitude.”

Overjoyed at this and fully satisfied, she came out and sat on the step on the verandah which is opposite to Bhagavan’s couch. Bhagavan was sitting on the couch in his characteristic pose, silent as usual and with a smile on his face. Looking at the radiant face of Bhagavan, she said involuntarily, “Ah! How beautiful Bhagavan is!”

A devotee who heard the exclamation approached Bhagavan and said, “She is saying how beautiful Bhagavan is.”

With a slight nod of his head Bhagavan said, “Sivam Sundaram”. See how pregnant with meaning that expression is?

~ Letters from Sri Ramanasramam (20th September, 1949)

No comments: