The Forum dedicated to Arunachala and Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi

Ramana Maharshi => Ashrams => Topic started by: billbill on September 20, 2008, 10:32:04 AM

Title: Ramana Ashram
Post by: billbill on September 20, 2008, 10:32:04 AM
I am planning in visiting Rama Ashram in a week from today (september 27th or 28th) from a period of two weeks.
I saw on previous posts email address for enquiries on accomodation at the Ashram - Thanks.
Is there any teaching or guidance available in the Ashram in case required?
(I encounter some difficulties in my current practice).
As far as I remember this the start of the monsoon season in Tami Nadu, from my experience in north India the monsoon is quite heavy - can someone kindly elaborate on how "bad" it is during this period down south?

Thanks,
Bill
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Subramanian.R on September 20, 2008, 10:44:05 AM
Dear Billbill,

I am glad you are visiting Sri Ramansramam, in a week's time.
A few tips, since I have gone there, in the beginning of this week.

1. Stay is possible in Asram's guest houses, (inside and outside
Asram) only with prior written request and their written permission.
Further, no one can stay beyond three days in guest houses.  For
a longer stay, you choose a hotel, (there are many with different
levels of comforts), the charges will be around Rs 400 per day
for a double room.  Only vegetarian food will be available on
extra payment.

2. There is no rain in T. Malai right now. The temperature is around
35 degrees celsius.

3. Regarding self enquriy practices:-  People are quite busy in
Asram.  You may have to patiently request them and wait for their
convenience.  You may also ask fellow pilgrims.

4. You can eat inside the Asram.  Their timings are:-

7.00 am - Coffee/tea
11.30 am - lunch
4.00 pm    - tea
7.30 pm  - dinner

Arunachala Siva.   
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 01, 2013, 03:39:08 PM
Announcements: Ramanasramam Website

S ri Ramanasramam has redesigned the website: http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org. The new design is ‘responsive’,
meaning the menu adapts to the screen size. The multilingual site includes English, Tamil, Hindi, Japanese, French and
Russian languages. We need volunteers to translate into Spanish, German and other languages. Those who wish to help with
translations may write to: ashram@gururamana.org. The new website allows free downloading of all issues of the Mountain
Path older than 2010. These may be found at: http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/Mountain-Path/.
 Visitors can learn to chant the Akshara Mana Malai at: http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/portfolio-item/chantarunachala/. The old website can still be accessed at http://archival.sriramanamaharshi.org for any information that is
missing in the new website. Because of limited resources, the ashram has only tested the new website in Firefox, IE, Safari
and Google Chrome. Please send suggestions for improvement to: ashram@gururamana.org.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on April 02, 2013, 05:24:08 PM
Announcements: Sri Ramanasramam Website Translations
The Ashram appreciates the spontaneous response of devotees to our request for translators for our website. We now have translators for German, Russian, French, Polish and Hebrew. We are still looking for a Spanish translator.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 02, 2013, 03:05:18 PM


Obituary: Sri T. R. Srinivasan

In 1978 while working as a stenographer for the management of a Chennai engine
and valve factory, Sri T. R. Srinivasan got a diagnosis from physicians that he had
only six months to live. Thinking his life was at an end, he took time off and came to Sri
Ramanasramam for a week’s stay. During the visit he found himself called to stay on and
was blessed to begin service in the Ashram office. Meanwhile, in Bhagavan’s Ashram, his
health was restored and ‘TRS’, as he came to be known, faithfully served the Ashram for
the next 32 years. Known for his diligence, TRS was said to be ever mindful of Bhagavan’s
injunction regarding Ashram correspondence: letters should be answered the same day.
TRS was meticulous in his duties and gracious in his service to Ashram devotees.
In 2010, following a fall which left him with an impaired hip, TRS withdrew from
active life. His health was in decline for the last year until the afternoon of the 26th
September, at the age of 78, when he peacefully drew his last breath.

from the saranagathi newsletter oct 2013
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 07, 2013, 06:42:31 PM
NavaRatri Celebrations

October 7th 2013

SRI RAMANASRAMAM -

Live Webcasting..
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 07, 2013, 01:01:00 PM

Full rotation view

http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/panorama/pano2/goodpano.html

http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/panorama/pano1/goodpano.html

http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/panorama/pano3/goodpano.html —
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 14, 2013, 01:56:36 PM
Bhagavan's 134th Jayanthi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 14, 2013, 02:16:07 PM
Bhagavan's 134th Jayanthi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 14, 2013, 02:22:40 PM
Bhagavan's 134th Jayanthi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 19, 2013, 09:07:43 PM



Radio Station
“Voice of Arunachala” is Internet radio station broadcast from Sri Ramanasramam, Tiruvannamalai, India. Sri Ramana Maharshi has written a verse meaning “This is Arunachala, Ocean of Compassion, one thought of whom bestows liberation”. Arunachala Mahatmyam states that “Arunachala Hill is the center of the Earth and the Heart of Lord Siva”.

The purpose of this radio station is to play songs, sacred chants, commentaries and readings from the works of Sri Ramana Maharshi and other saints glorifying Arunachala. We hope to bring the atmosphere of the ashram within the earshot of listeners anywhere in the world. Listeners are welcome to send suggestions for the improvement of the program.

http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/radio-station/
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 20, 2014, 02:37:50 AM

Aksharamanmalai Talks (in English) by – Nochur Sri Venkataramana – Live Video Streaming – 20.01.2014 to 26.01.2014 between 09.00 am (IST) to 10.30 am (IST)



20-Jan-2014
To
26-Jan-2014   

On the occasion of Centenary of Bhagavan’s Aksharamanamalai
Sri Ramanasramam,
Tiruvannamalai
Aksharamanamalai;

English

09.00AM
to
10.30AM
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 20, 2014, 04:10:46 PM
Beautiful collection of stories by 160 devotees of Sri Ramana Maharshi:

http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Face_to_Face_with_Sri_Ramana_Maharshi.pdf
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 20, 2014, 04:13:04 PM
Surrounded by admirers, ‪#‎Abhigya‬, 9, of Mysore, beams after a mellifluous recitation of Chapter 11 of the ‪#‎BhagavadGita‬, immediately following the ‪#‎Ramana‬ ‪#‎Sadguru‬ ‪#‎Tamil‬ ‪#‎parayana‬ at the ‪#‎sannidhi‬ of ‪#‎Sri‬ ‪#‎RamanaMaharshi‬ in ‪#‎Ramanasramam‬ ‪#‎Tiruvannamalai‬. In the absence of guru or teacher, Abhigya learned by heart the entire 700 verses of the ‪#‎SongofGod‬ on his computer, while living in Melbourne. The Shankaracharya of Sringeri has given him a certificate. Abhigya first visited Ramanasramam at the age of one.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 02, 2014, 04:34:52 PM
Om Namo Bhagavate Sri Ramanaya

Ashram website is developing an online communication system to inform devotees by email about major events such as live webcasting, Jayanti, Sri Vidya Havan, Maha Sivaratri etc.,

The participation is entirely voluntary and ashram will respect the privacy and confidentiality of information provided by the registrants.

Devotees can receive timely email notification of future events.

Please enter the following information to subscribe.
 
First Name:       
Last Name :       
 
Email ID       
 
 copied from the Sri Ramanamaharishi.org web site
        
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on May 11, 2014, 12:51:09 PM
Sri Ramana Maharshi Life Story, with original footage of Sri Ramana. Government of India production, 1980, English commentary. Here is a link .

.
www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VX94rflmkk
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on August 30, 2014, 01:09:57 AM
Navarathiri at Ramanashramam
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on August 30, 2014, 11:10:56 PM
Ashram has designed an android App to teach how to chant Aksharamanamalai. You can download the App here
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ramana.learntochantaksharamanamalai

Akshramanamalai was born in the supreme divine Love that Ramana Maharshi experienced in an extremely intense and spontaneous way towards Arunachala, This hymn embodies the potent grace of Ramana Maharshi and is a very rare gift bestowed on humanity. Everyone who chants this hymn will be filled with joy and overcome mental delusions and sorrows. Since not knowing Tamil is a barrier for most people in chanting this hymn, this app will patiently teach English and Tamil speakers how to chant the verses one by one. The meaning of each verse is included so that the prayer behind each verse is clear. The time spent in learning this hymn is well worth it. Arunachala Siva's grace will operate on those who learn and chant even a single verse correctly. Regular chanting of the hymn is a spiritually rewarding experience leading to freedom.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on September 02, 2014, 11:08:38 AM
Early in the morning on the 1st of September, 1896, young Venkataramana reached Arunachala temple after an epic journey from his home in Madurai. From the railway station he went direct to the Temple. Strange to say, untypically even at that early hour all the temple doors, including those of the Sanctum Sanctorum were wide open, as it were, for the Father to receive His Son immediately upon his arrival in Tiruvannamalai. Unhindered, unnoticed and unhesitating the youth ran in and reported himself to his Father thus:-

O Lord, obedient to Thy call, here have I come, deserting all. No boon I ask, no loss bemoan, Take me in and make me Thine own.   That very moment all physical and mental excitement disappeared, and he felt perfect peace and bliss unalloyed.

One Hundred and eighteen years later, his gracious presence continues to capture sincere seeker's heart and guides them to their final destination of Arunachala, the Divine Self in the Heart of all.
Celebrations of this event were held today, 1st September, with the traditional morning Mahanyasa puja, special abhishekam at the big temple, and the Ramana Mandiram group visiting us from Madurai. Further Mr. Mervin Alexander, Postmaster General, Chennai City Region attended a special function in the ashram honoring the release of the permanent pictorial cancellation.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on September 18, 2014, 01:34:06 PM
Recent conversion of dirt road leading to the library using tiles inadvertently removed stones and pillars frequently used by Ramana Maharshi. Senior devotees disapproved of the removal of these sacred stones. In deference to their wish ashram has re-installed most of the older stones and the two pillars. Fortunately the workers had carefully preserved all the stones and the steps have been rebuilt using these stones. In accordance with the prayer in Aksharamanamalai we can have the satisfaction of touching the stones touched by Bhagavan ?Regard me! Take thought of me! Touch me! Mature me! Make me one with Thee, O Arunachala!?
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on September 23, 2014, 04:54:54 PM
Navarathiri Celebrations Live webcast

Join Us for Navaratri September 24 - October 3rd (4 photos)
Navaratri worship at the ashram includes Lalita Sahasranamam (Laksha Archana) and the recital of sacred Devi Mahatmyam. Devi Mahatmyam describes the fierce manifestation (Ugra Swarupa) of the Divine which exterminates evil forces completely whereas Lalita is the gentle manifestation of the Divine Mother. You can join the worship in the following ways:

1. Tune into Voice of Arunachala radio station and listen to the chanting of Devi Mahatmyam in Sanskrit between 6:07 AM and 6:37 AM IST(4:37 PM EST) repeated after six hours every day.

2. Listen to the commentary on Devi Mahatmyam in Tamil by late Sri Swami Ranganathanandaji Maharaj for one hour following the above chanting. We are thankful to Ramakrishna Mission for permitting us to use their copyrighted material.

3. Watch the vesper service (Harati) in the ashram from 6:30 PM(approximate) through live webcast from
our website www.gururamana.net.

4. Follow us in the Facebook or ashram website for latest photos and video posting.
Sri Ramana Maharshi quotes from Lalita Sahasranamam to establish that Heart center taught by him is different from the Anahata Chakra of the Kunadalini Yoga. The Heart that Bhagavan teaches is the Alpha and Omega reached directly by self-enquiry whereas the Anahata Chakra is situated on the way to Sahasrara Chakra from Mualadhara. Talks with Ramana Maharshi 398 says in part:

D.: What is Anahata?
M.: Anahata is the chakra lying behind the heart. It is not samvit. Lalita Sahasranama has it, Anahata chakrasthayai namo namah (Salutations to the core situated in Anahata) and the next mantra Hrit (in the Heart). Thus it is clear that Anahata is not the same as Hrit.
A gentleman asked if the yogis also reach the anahata and thus realize the Heart-center as is done by the jnanis but in a different way.

M.: Anahata is not the same as the Heart-centre. If so, why should they wander further on to Sahasrara? Moreover, the question arises because of the sense of separateness persisting in us. We are never away from the Heart-center. Before reaching anahata or after passing it, one is only in the center. Whether one understands it or not, one is not away from the center. Practice of yoga or self-enquiry is done, always remaining in the center only.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on September 24, 2014, 10:38:15 AM
Last evening's atmospheric procession of Goddess Yogambikai around the samadhi-shrines in Sri Ramanasramam, prior to the commencement of Navratri Festival.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dz4ZLgaZ5Ek&feature=youtu.be
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 07, 2014, 04:41:00 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dr5VUIF6Rko
Ramana Maharshi "Mahanirvana room " by David Godman

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-j7FcbuajeE
Ramana Maharshi kitchen -- stories by David Godman

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2SjkmWwNlg
Ramana Maharishi --- David Godman "Dining hall "
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 15, 2014, 12:01:06 AM
Swami Shantananda Puri Maharaj Passes Away

Swami Shantananda Puri Maharaj , a staunch devotee of Sri Ramana Maharshi and a resident of Sri Ramanasramam passed away on October 14, 2014 at about 1:30PM. His enlightened and inspiring presence at the ashram will be missed by one and all.

Swamiji came to Sri Ramanasramam nearly four decades ago and was a permanent resident of the ashram. He has written Sadhanas from Guru Vachaka Kovai, Sadhanas from Devi Kalottaram and Sadhanas from Sri Ramana Gita and many other books. He has also composed 108 names (ashtotram) on Sri Ramana Maharshi's mother in Sanskrit which is available as an ashram publication. Swamiji has been compared to Nachiketas for having defied death several years ago and returning from the abode of death after medicos gave up hope.

His Holiness Sri Swami Shantananda Puri Maharaj of Vasishta Guha (Himalayas), was born on 6th May, 1928, in Tiruvaiyaru (the land of five rivers), Tamil Nadu, India. Swamiji is a disciple of Parma poojya Sri Swami Purushottamananda Puri Maharaj, who was the disciple of Swami Brahmananda (the great disciple of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa). Swamiji is a scholar par excellence in vedic scriptures as well as in the puranic texts. His simplicity, transparent deep faith in the divine force and absolute surrender to the Supreme has made him an ideal combination of Jnana and Bhakti.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on October 15, 2014, 07:53:34 AM
i have had the privilege of seeing and interacting with Him few times.May He guide us.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Subramanian.R on October 15, 2014, 10:21:36 AM
Once I and my wife met him in Asramam.  He invited us to his room in Korangu Thottam.  We went in the afternoon.
We were talking to him for sometime.  He then blessed us by placing his hand on our heads. We made a small
contribution, after seeing many medicines on his side table.  He refused to accept it.  Later he reluctantly accepted it.
He only told us to read first the reminiscences of devotees to understand Sri Bhagavan better.  He had his dhiksha
from Purushottamanada ji of Sri Ramakrishna Ashram after 32 years of family life.

Arunachala Siva.
       
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 15, 2014, 10:25:41 AM
Dear Subramanian Sir and drSundaram Sir

I missed him for his blessings.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on October 15, 2014, 11:56:22 AM
most of the days  He comes when Bhagavan's milk offereing  pooja, in the mng, is done.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: latha on October 16, 2014, 01:07:54 AM
Dear Friends,

I came across this beautiful letter in an old issue of Mountain Path and have been meaning to share with you all. I don't know if it is written by the same person but this letter is by Swami Shantananda Puri and is from the Mountain Path 2005 Oct Issue. I am amazed by the timing, I came across this message in the past week and have been thinking about it.

Have any of you met Swami Shantananda? Yes, yes, he is the Swamiji, with the child-like, gleeful smile on his face, bursting with joy. He is often seen at Sri Ramanashramam. Swamiji is an ardent devotee of our Bhagavan Ramana. Talking to Swamiji, is like talking to an innocent child, simple and open. On Bhagavan?s Jayanthi day in 2004 (Jan. 8th 2004), a family with two children approached Swami Shantananda for his blessings. The Swamiji was
residing at Sri Ramanashramam in the cottage assigned to him. He was at that point of time in mouna i.e. in silence. The family requested Swamiji
to give instructions to the kids on how to meditate. Since the Swamiji was in mouna, he wrote down a very beautiful, simple message. This letter
is a treasure, it is from God?s child to all children between 0 -99 years. This heart-felt message was written very spontaneously, and all present felt the
blessings.

=====================
Dear Children,
OM. In life as you grow, you have to meet problems. Even as children,  problems in school, problems in house, health problems. So in all
these problems, there is one helper sitting inside our heart. He is very kind, all powerful. He will help if you call him. How to call? There
is a code word -? daily sit down for 15 minutes and shut your eyes. By imagination, imagine that you are seeing in the right side of the
body next to the HEART which is on the left. Then you just think continuously ?Who Am I?? ?Who Am I??. The one who is sitting
inside the Heart is called GOD. Also, called the SELF. But His petname is ?I?. If you do it daily, your intelligence, memory, beauty,
creative capacity ? all will grow ? and one day you will become great. Do not repeat ?Who Am I? but go on feeling ? focus your
attention. It looks difficult. Do it for 6 months ? so easy! It will help you at all times.
Blessings of Bhagawan. HARI OM.
What is HARI OM? Short form for ?Hurry Home? ? Wish you a nice journey! (pointing to the heart, meaning the inward journey)
? Swami Shantananda
Jan. 8th, 2004 (Jayanthi Day)

Om Namo Bhagavate Sri Ramanaya
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on October 16, 2014, 08:01:50 AM
wonderful and timely recap ms lathaji. thank you.Om Namo bhagavathe Sri Ramanaya
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 16, 2014, 10:47:25 AM
Mme Latha

Very nice letter and useful informations for people in the  stress and tension  world.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 18, 2014, 12:25:57 PM
Swami Shantananda Puri Maharaj is entombed in Panditha Pattu, a small quiet village about six kilometers from the ashram with a lovely view of Arunachala Hill. During interment devotees spontaneously sang Siva Puranam, Vedas and other sacred Bhajans. Swamiji?s final few weeks were amazing display Ramana Maharshi?s boundless grace. Bhagavan has said ?Some Sakti draws people from all parts of the globe to this centre.? Indeed that Sakti is not different from Ramana Maharshi Himself.

That great Sakti made Swamiji give up his abode in Himalayas many years ago and kept him here despite life-threatening medical issues. In the first week of April he was diagnosed with Cellulitus and very soon it turned into Septicemia, a serious, life-threatening infection that gets worse very quickly. The entire body including intestines, kidneys, liver, hands, etc. was all infected badly. He could not talk due to severe mouth ulcers but would surprise devotees by speaking spontaneously on occasions. In such a state he completed the final proof reading of ?Sadhanas from Guru Vachaka Kovai?!
He was admitted in the ICU of East Cost Hospital, Pondicherry. On 20th September, he insisted on visiting Ramana ashram, in spite of being in a critical condition after recovering from hepatic coma. The doctors declined permission but was he a person to give up so easily? He resorted to satyagraha until the doctors reluctantly released him.
The two days, 20th and 21st September were exceptionally memorable. He was full of joy and his love was overflowing. He was extremely cheerful throughout and made everyone around him happy. He did not sleep the entire night and was constantly checking the time to leave for Tiruvannamalai. The moment he entered the Ashram, he became ecstatic! He was in the stretcher and was very affectionately received by President and the entire ashram administration. The moment he came out, he said, ?Bhagavan Ramana is my father, my mother, my Guru and my everything. Where else can I go?? All words will fail to describe the atmosphere that was created when Swamiji was in the shrine. One had to be there to experience this feeling! His devotes were very happy to see his wish of seeing Bhagavan was fulfilled to the fullest. Later same day he developed serious complications with bleeding and had to be rushed back to the hospital where he eventually shrugged off his mortal coil.

Swami Shantananda Puri has written over 30 books. Significantly ?sadhanas from Upadesa Saram? was released on the last day of his earthy sojourn. In the humorous spirit of Swamiji we may write an epitaph ?Here lies a joyous Swamiji who converted ICU into I See You Eternally Arunachala!?.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on October 18, 2014, 02:31:57 PM
thank you very much for very detailed coverage.in fact i was looking for the information  as to his last rites , place etc. thank you again. om namo bhagavthe sri ramanaya
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on October 24, 2014, 08:09:58 AM
thank you shri Balaji for updating all happenings at Asram .
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 31, 2014, 11:02:32 AM
One hot summer afternoon, as Pranavananda walked to ashram from town his aged body was overcome by heat exhaustion and he sat down in the shade of a tree at the entrance to the ashram unable to walk further. At that moment, Bhagavan happened to look out of the window and seeing Pranavananda?s exhausted condition, rushed out with a jug full of cold water. He poured it over Pranavananda?s sore feet and spoke to him in gentle, compassionate tones, saying, ?Why do you put yourself to such strain? Did I ever ask you to go out in this heat?? We may never again see the comely form of Bhagavan coming down to do physical service to a devotee but His spirit of compassion lives on.

In an unrelated event, ashram has acquired an automatic dish washer capable of washing stainless steel cups quickly. The newly acquired mechanical device will reduce the drudgery of the aged women workers in the kitchen who toil day in and day out to wash the dishes. Perhaps it is an act of compassion inspired by the grace of Bhagavan.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on November 01, 2014, 06:56:17 AM
oh........ good. yet another  posting  reg ashram. namaskram shri balaji
om namo bhagavathe  sri ramanaya
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 06, 2014, 11:20:15 AM
Today is the Guru Puja day of Tirumoola Naayanar who is one of the sixty-three saintly devotees of Siva described in Periyapuranam. Moved by compassion he used his yogic power to enter the dead body of a cowherd thus bringing solace to grieving cows. He is widely respected and adored for the gems of spiritual treasure left by him in an epic of 3,000 verses known as Tirumantram. Sri Ramana Maharshi referred to Tirumantram as described below:
When Seshadriswami was ill, Veerappa Chettiar came and asked Sri Bhagavan about the proper construction of a samadhi for a saint. Sri Bhagavan took out Tirumular's Tirumandiram and asked someone to copy out the portion relating to the construction of a samadhi and give it to Chettiar. According to the instructions, Chettiar constructed the samadhi in 20 days. On the 21st day, 14-1-1929, Seshadriswami merged into Sri Arunachala.

Earlier Bhagavan had consulted the same work for the construction of His mother?s Samadhi. In Tirumandiram, Tirumular strongly emphasizes on Anbe Sivam or Love is God, reminding one of Aksharamanamalai verse 101. As snow in water, let me melt as love in Thee, Who art Love itself, O Arunachala!?
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 09, 2014, 03:55:00 PM
Mastan was born in 1878 in Desur, a small village about forty miles from Tiruvannamalai in a Muslim weaver's family. He became a devotee of Bhagavan at an early age. Bhagavan on Mastan Swami: Mastan was a kind generous man who was always looking for an opportunity to help other people. He never showed any self-importance staying in the background, unnoticed and unappreciated by ordinary people. Bhagavan once remarked, with great joy, Mastan's craft, though it did not give food either to him or his parents, gives me clothes. Among those who become devotees, there is a wide range of spiritual attainment: complete beginners mix with highly advanced souls. The most advanced are ripe fruits, just waiting to fall. One such devotee was Mastan. He was such a ripe soul, when he came to Virupaksha Cave to see me he would sometimes go into a deep samadhi even before he had entered the cave. As soon as he touched the railings of the gate, he would have a paralyzing experience of the Self. He would stand, rooted to the spot, unable to move, for six or seven hours.


In 1914, Mastan Swami and Akhilandamma opened a home (mutt) in the village of Desur where visiting sadhus and pilgrims would get room and board. Sadhus from Ramanasramam used it as a resting center when they were sick and needed someone to care for them. Mastan once asked Bhagavan about the sound of a big bell ringing during his meditations and limitless effulgence that would appear. Bhagavan advised him, There is no need to concern ourselves about sounds such as these. If you see from where it rises, it will be known that it arises on account of a desire of the mind. Everything appears in oneself and subsides within oneself. The light, too, only appears from the same place. If you see to whom it appears, mind will subside at the source and only reality will remain.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 10, 2014, 02:57:43 PM
Annamalai Swami's Guru Puja was done in his Samadhi shrine with the worship of Siva Linga amidst Aksharamanamalai chanting on November 9. Annamalai Swami came to Bhagavan in 1928 as a young aspirant keen on making rapid spiritual progress. Initially he worked as an attendant, but soon Bhagavan gave him the supervision of all the building projects in the ashram. Though well qualified to do the masonry work he felt involvement in construction work will halt his spiritual progress. Dissatisfied with his role in the ashram, He ran away to Polur. But can the net of Arunachala's Grace ever fail? He ran into all kinds of trouble until he changed his mind and decided to come back to the ashram. The moment he decided to return to the ashram everything adjusted itself smoothly in his favor. He learned the profound spiritual truth that highest spiritual progress is as simple as doing Master's bidding.

Between 1928 and 1938, working directly under Bhagavan, he supervised the construction of the cowshed, the Veda Patasala, the dining room, the storeroom, the old office block, the dispensary and the large revetment on the north side of the ashram. In 1938 the following experience reported in Talks with Ramana Maharshi changed the course of his life:
When Sri Bhagavan was taking His bath a few devotees were around Him, speaking to each other. Finally they asked Him about the use of the drug hashish (ganja). Sri Bhagavan had finished His bath by that time. He said: Oh ganja! The users feel immensely happy when they are under its influence. How shall I describe their happiness! They simply shout ananda! Ananda! Saying so, He walked as if tipsy. Everyone laughed. He appeared as if He stumbled, placed His hands round Annamalai Swami and cried ananda! ananda!
Annamalai Swami records that his very being was transformed from that time. He further says that his mind now remains at peace. Annamalai Swami also asked: Namadev, Tukaram, Tulsidas and others are said to have seen Maha Vishnu. How did they see Him?

M.: In what manner? Just in the same manner as you see me now and I see you here. They would also have seen Vishnu in this way only. He records that, on hearing it, his hairs stood on end and an intense joy overpowered him.
In later years Annamalai Swami became a reputed and much sought after saint guiding seekers on the path of Bhagavan for nearly forty-five years after Bhagavan?s Maha Samadhi. Many books have been written on him and interestingly one book has the title Living by the Words of the Master.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 11, 2014, 04:50:51 PM
Continued from a previous post :Mastan Swami served the devotees of Bhagavan very devoutly. He would happily feed devotees even if he had to beg for the food. He always brought so much food that devotees gave away plenty of leftover food. He would ask with great respect Please tell me some stories about the glory of our Master. To me, every word Bhagavan speaks is holy. The words that come out of his holy mouth are so powerful, merely listening to them can give liberation to ripe souls.
Akhilandamma cared for Mastan Swamy during his last days in 1931. She reports: He was sick and bedridden for about a week. During those days he spoke of many things not of this world, as if he were actually seeing them. He said, There, Nandi the bull, Mount of Siva, is descending. He is very affectionately licking all over my body! Look! The attendants of Siva are dancing here! See! They are beckoning me to come to their world. Look at those lotus ponds where celestial swans are swimming!

It appeared like delirium but on the last day He suddenly got up on his bed and stood up, looking as if someone, face to face, had been calling him. Then, in great excitement, he exclaimed, ?Mother Apeetakuchamba have you come yourself to escort me The next moment he fell down dead. On hearing the news, Bhagavan instructed Kunju Swamigal to go and build a Samadhi as described by Tirumular in Tirumandiram. He also told Akhilandammal May be the universal mother, Apeetakuchamba, personally came to receive him. All his descriptions correspond to the world of Siva. Mastan was an unassuming devotee. He had a wealth of hidden spiritual experiences. It is a matter for gratification that he passed away under your care and supervision?

The dead body of Mastan Swamy, a Muslim, was carried for burial in a brand new four-wheeled cart,(chapparam) provided by the local Siva temple. Such carts are usually reserved for the exclusive use of the Deity of the temple. The exceptional decision of the temple authorities in permitting the use of the cart for Mastan Swamy's final journey confirms beyond all doubt that his final spiritual experience was not delirium but authored by Lord Siva Himself both in earth and Heaven.
The Jain inhabitants of the village felt that having a Hindu samadhi in their midst would be very inauspicious. When they first heard of it, there was even talk of their abandoning the village completely. However, in the time that has passed since Mastan's samadhi was constructed, the village has thrived and grown rich. Nowadays the Samadhi is a visible deity to all the people from the village, whatever their caste or religion. What a wonder!
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 16, 2014, 12:44:52 AM
The Karthigai Deepam is the most important festival not only for the folks of the temple town of Tiruvannamalai but also for most of Tamil Nadu. Devotees from Chennai, Madurai, Tiruchy and other towns voluntarily came to the temple and started cleaning the temple as one would clean once own house before an important function. The enthusiasm of a large number of men and women who came with brooms, cleaning solutions and implements is contagious to say the least. We conclude with Bhagavan?s verse on Karthigai Deepam(beacon on the Hill)
?Getting rid of the ?I am the body? idea and turning the mind inwards and merging it in the Heart to realize the real, non-dual and effulgent Self, is the real significance of seeing the beacon of light on Annamalai, the centre of the earth?.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on November 16, 2014, 06:41:18 AM
so nice mr balaj recapitulating shri Bhagavan'ss words on the eve of karthigai dheepam. om namo ramana
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 27, 2014, 11:10:48 AM

 Sri Ramanashramam Yajur Ghana Paaraayanam Nov 26, 0734 hrs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_-lmV3oaMI&feature=share
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 28, 2014, 12:57:53 PM
Each day the choice of vehicles used by the Deity varies according to the scriptural theme chosen for depiction. On the second day, for example, the vehicle used is Sun God or Surya Vahana emphasizing the truth that even the apparently huge and self-luminous Sun is but an instrument serving the Almighty Lord Arunachala, Emperor of the Universe.There are two processions every day, one in the morning at 11 AM and the other at 10 PM. We turn to the writings of Ramana Maharshi to help us understand the deeper mysteries of Arunachala.

Lord Arunachala is ever-present as an extremely compassionate Being. Those who seek Him without coveting riches, lands, relatives, caste and the like, shine with resplendent Grace like the rays of the rising Sun and remain ever happy in the world.

When one enquires into the meaning of Arunachala, which is lustrous like red gold and bestows Liberation, one finds that the word Aruna means Sat, Chit and Ananda (Existence, Consciousness and Bliss), the identity of the individual self and the Supreme Self and that the word Achala means perfection.
Dazzling Sun that swallowest up all the universe in Thy rays, open the lotus of my Heart, I pray, Oh Arunachala!
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 29, 2014, 09:45:49 PM
Ah! What a wonder! Arunachala stands as an insentient Hill. Its action is mysterious, past human understanding. From the age of innocence it had shone within my mind that Arunachala was something of surpassing grandeur, but even when I came to know through another that it was the same as Tiruvannamalai, I did not realise its meaning. When it drew me up to it, stilling my mind, and I came close, I saw it stand unmoving.
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!

As the string binds a necklet of gems, it is Thou in Thy Unity who penetrates all the diversity of beings and religions. If, like a gem when it is cut and polished, the impure mind is worked against the wheel of the pure mind to free it of its flaws, it will take on the light of Thy Grace and shine like a ruby, whose fire is unaffected by any outward object. When a photographic plate has been exposed to the sunlight, can it receive any impressions afterwards? O benign and dazzling Aruna Hill! Is there anything apart from Thee?
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 01, 2014, 02:12:46 AM
The Lord of the Vedas, the Jewel of the Vedas, he is the Vedas incarnate. The delighter in life eternal gained by power of his love is Ramana Sat-Guru! Verse 13 in Ramana stuti panchakam

Grant me the essence of the Vedas, which shine in the Vedanta, one without a second, Oh Arunachala! Verse 99 in Aksharamanamalai
For over a century Bhagavan devotees like Raju Sastrigal and the family of Chandrasekhara Iyer have been organizing and participating in special Veda Parayana during the ten days of Karthigai festival. In the last eight years additional groups headed by our Veda Patsala teachers Sendil Ganabadigal and Hari Ganabadigal have added to this tradition and conduct their own group Parayana. Over hundred Ritwiks from various parts of India come to Arunachala and devoutly chant the Vedas to the delight of devotees. Included are Sukla Yajur Veda Ghana Parayanam, Krishna Yajur Veda Ghana parayanam and Sama Veda Chantings. It takes forty days or four year at the rate of ten days a year to recite the entire Vedas. Vedas are chanted at the ashram shrine, Sankara Madam, Sri Lalitambika temple and in the Tiruvannamalai town near Ayyankulam tank.

Fourth day procession included "Kalpaka Vriksham" , the wishful filling tree and "Kamadenu" the wish fulfilling cow. The presence of Lord Arunachala makes them harmless in the sense that wishes fulfilled will not lead to any unwanted side-effects.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 01, 2014, 07:04:38 PM
Sunday witnessed the grand procession of Lord Arunachala riding the bull. The event is a big crowd puller and the devout residents wait in line with family and children for hours to pay homage to the Lord. Philosophers explain that the Rishaba or the Bull represents righteousness and it being the vehicle symbolizes the fact that only a righteous person can become a carrier of Lord Arunachala's grace. Bhagavan in Guru Vachaka Kovai says It is said that Siva chose the Bull for His service, this is to give us, step by step, the basic attitude that all the forms we see are the forms of Siva.

We know Bhagavan came as a boy of sixteen to Arunachala on Sepetember 1st and stayed in the big temple. First Karthigai Deepam would have occurred about three or four months later. What impact did the festival have on his contemplative world-indifferent life-style Read on:In the early days, when I was under the illuppai tree in the Temple compound I had no clothing of any sort. It was not because of renunciation. The cod-piece I was wearing used to bring on sores where it touched the skin. When the sore became bad, I threw away the cod-piece. That is all. There used to be an old priest who for the first time arranged for some regular food for me either by supplying some from his house or by sending the milk from the temple. After I had been nude for about a month, this old priest told me one day, Boy, the Kartigai Deepam is approaching. People from all the 24 districts will be flocking here. Police from all the districts will also be here. They will arrest you and put you into jail if you are nude like this. So you must have a cod-piece. So saying, he got a new piece of cloth and made four people lift me up to tie the cod-piece round me.

Even Bhagavan had to dress up for the festival! Has He not sung Tear off these robes, expose me naked, then robe me with the robe of Thy Grace, O Arunachala! May Bhagavan ever ride in the Rishaba of our Hearts.

from the fb
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 03, 2014, 12:02:21 PM
The majestic awe-inspiring chariot weighing over 300 tons and nearly 100 feet tall is hauled by the muscle power of devotees or more accurately the power of devotion. Because thousands of devotees pull the chariot it is not easy to get a grip on the steel chain. Once the chariot starts moving the individual is no longer in control of what happens. The cumulative power of all the devotees takes over and exerts mighty force which actually determines the motion of the devotee himself. Those who pull the chariot experience spiritual elevation and it becomes easy for them to understand Bhagavan's teaching in Sri Ramana Gita chapter 12, verse 15 Supreme Lord (Arunachala) moves by His Own Supreme Power. By manually drawing the chariot devotees experience the teaching of Bhagavan in a practical way ,I am not the body and I am not the doer.
Sixth day's event featured silver chariot.


from the fb
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 04, 2014, 11:56:35 PM
For a week the Lord displayed wish-fulfilling tree, grand chariot, silver chariot and heavenly splendor. On the eighth day Lord Arunachala comes in the unrecognizable form of a very poor destitute beggar, Pichandavar. Those who recognize Him even in such a lowly form are blessed with life in Kailas. Others who reject Him saying Go away can forget about Grace, wish-fulfilling tree etc. If you think all this is fairy tale read from Bhagavan's life. When I was going out for Bhiksha(begging),people used to say Swami is come, and give me food with fear and devotion. Those who did not know me used to say, You are strong and sturdy. Instead of going out like this as a beggar, why don't you go out to work as a cooly(labourer) I used to feel amused. But I was a Mouna (silent) Swami and did not speak. I used to laugh and go away feeling that it was usual for ordinary people to talk like that.

December fourth features journey to Kailas, the Heavenly abode of the Lord. December fifth is Maha Deepam. Live webcast of Maha Deepam from 5 pm to 6:30 pm from http://gururamana.net/
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 06, 2014, 01:08:29 PM
Srimati Nagamma describes Deepam during 1947 in Letters from Sri Ramanarsamam: Bhagavan came from the cow-shed with his attendants, and it was as though it were actually Lord Siva Himself arriving on the scene. Spontaneously those gathered there rose; Bhagavan seated himself on the couch and all prostrated before him.When the ghee brought by devotees was poured into the pan for kindling the light, the pan was overflowing. Camphor was then placed on the wick. The fragrance from the lighted incense sticks spread on all sides and created a holy atmosphere.

Bhagavan sat lovingly looking at all the devotees and related to those near him the significance of the Festival of Lights. He also pointed out the exact place where the light was to be kindled on the hill-top. After that, Veda parayana began.
By the time the parayana was over, the sun had set. Soon, little lights in earthenware saucers were lit all-round the hall and garlands of electric lights of many colours were switched on. Everyone was eagerly awaiting the lighting of the sacred beacon on the hill-top and the attendants had handed to Bhagavan a binocular with which he, too, was eagerly scanning the hill. While his gaze was concentrated on the summit of the hill, ours was concentrated on his Divine face, for it was just a reflection of Arunachala.

With the firing of crackers at the Temple, the light on the hill-top appeared. Immediately, the akhanda jyoti (uninterrupted) light, opposite Bhagavan was lighted. The Brahmins rose and chanted the mantra, na karmana naprajaya dhanena, and lit the camphor; kumkum and vibhuti were distributed and then all the devotees sat down. After Bhagavan had partaken of a little fruit and some sweetmeats, the rest were distributed amongst the devotees. Immediately after that, the devotees divided themselves into two parties, one singing the hymns in the Akshara Mana Mala, and the other taking up the refrain Arunachala Siva. After that, the five stanzas beginning with Karunapurnasudhabhde in Sanskrit and its equivalent in Tamil were recited.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 15, 2014, 11:12:32 AM
According to Ramana Maharshi chanting Aksharamanamalai is its meaning. On December 14 Aksharamanamalai was chanted continuously from 6 am to 6 pm with occasional breaks. Entire hymn was chanted 21 times indoors. The final chanting outdoors before the Hill ended on a very auspicious note as the light on the Hill came to view just as the verse 101 anbu uru or form of love was being chanted. Given the zero visibility of Deepam on the previous day due to cloud cover it appeared as a sign from Lord Arunachala acknowledging our prayer. Annamalai ki arohara

101.அம்புவில் ஆலிபோல் அன்பு உரு உனில் எனை
அன்பாக் கரைத்து அருள் அருணாசலா,
Am/buvil/ā/lipōl An/buru/vuni/lenai An/bāk/karait/tarul Arunā/chalā.
As snow in water, let me melt as love in Thee, Who art Love itself, O Arunachala!
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 17, 2014, 11:25:15 AM
Ashram news first: December 15 was the last day Deepam could be seen.From Dec 16th Dhanur Masa(Dec 16- Jan 14) puja began which includes special abhisekham plus parayana of Vishnu Sahasranama, Tirupavvai, Tiruvempavai and aksharamanamalai daily from 4:30 AM to 6:30 AM. Now yoga sutra 1 'Atma nishttho bhava.' Inhere in the Self.
Notes l ' Atman' denotes the body, the prana, the mind, the buddhi, the individual and the Ultimate. Here. 'Atman' is only used to indicate the Ultimate. Normally the Self is the word used to indicate the Ultimate and the self is used to indicate the individual entity. Already we are firm in the notion of our individuality, and it requires no teaching from the Master. The Master emphasizes that the aim should be inherence In the Ultimate.

2. By implication, the Master Insists that the seeker should turn his face away from all the affairs and ideas of the world. He must be literally dead to it, so that he may be reborn in the Divine realm. The Master teaches that we should strictly abandon all activities, contacts and social functions of the world, whether good or bad, whether for individual or for social benefit. The aspirant should be a 'nissanga' (non-attached). He should not allow himself to be carried away by such propaganda suggesting that ' living in society means participation in it for the good of society', or for that matter, for any portion of society or even for individuals. He should be non-attached even to his individual matters, including attainment of mystic powers or better worlds, called 'heaven' in the Christian and Mohammedan religions, 'svarga' in the Hindu and Buddhist religions and the several lokas of Indra. Agni, Varuna, etc ; (Indra, Agni and Varuna are the devas or deities mentioned in the Veda ; they have their own worlds or ' lokas ') (In the Ramana-doctrine, there is no God or gods, angels or archangels, powers and hosts to rely upon for attaining this state of Self-inherence).

3. 'Nishtha' comprises two ideas really. 'Shtha' indicates 'being in'; 'nish' indicates 'firmly, never to come out'. The use of 'nish' indicates that in the Ramana-doctrine, once one attains the highest state, there should be no coming back, or down. In the yoga-sastra the sadhaka comes down to earth again even from the states of highest Samadhi. When the power of his concentration slackens, he reverts to his normal state of consciousness, that is, 'jagrat'. Ramana distinguishes this state as the state of practice and not a state of attainment of the goal, which he calls the ' sahaja state', that is, the native state, the original state. According to him, it is only when one forgets one's pristine state, that the notions of oneself, the world and the Lord of the world occur.

4. This aphorism defines the goal; it must be noted that in Ramana's opinion all other activities even the divinization of the world, are futile without which knowledge one can never understand his relation to the world and to the Lord, nor the lesser aim of perfecting the world, which will not and cannot be successfully done.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on December 30, 2014, 05:02:40 PM
Sri Ramana Maharshi was born 135 years ago on December 30th. Astronomically Earth completes 135th orbit around the Sun today counting since His birth. Earth not only revolves around the Sun but also spins around its own axis. Both are Bhagavan approved forms of worship. Before Bhagavan pities us for paying too much attention to His body we remember: Ramana has no Jayanti of His own, because He is the Unborn, Timeless, Real Self in us. So what we call His Jayanti is only our jayanti - Our Birth in Him, our Real Self. This birth is guaranteed to us, His sincere devotees, because He has looked on us with grace.

Ramana is the Formless, Timeless and Spaceless Arunachala who dances as the I in the Heart. He has graciously taken a form, that we may be relieved of the bondage of form. He is not a geographical entity but the Moveless Brahman of the Upanishads. Grace is His Essence, and out of grace He has become our Guru. Grace is not simply in Tiruvannamalai, but resides in our hearts. The Heart is the True Arunachala.
The might of His Grace is infinite, It is invincible: By His look we were caught in the net of His Grace, and It will accomplish Its work. There is no escape from It. His Grace is like the unerring light of the Sun. As it devours the darkness, so Grace devours Ignorance and Unreality. We need do nothing at all, except to give our free consent that this work of Grace shall be accomplished.

To give our consent we must realise the truth about the work of Grace that it demands, in return for the gift of Ramana Himself, our own too much cherished, but wholly valueless false self, the ego, which makes us think and say, I am so and so". We must ourselves ardently desire to win Him by paying this seeming price and surrender this ego to Him.

This highly profitable bargain is to be won by Faith and Loyalty. We need to have such Faith, since we know that Ramana is the same as Bhagavatpada Sri Sankaracharya and Sri Dakshinamurti, and that His words are the primary Upanishad, from which the ancient Upanishads themselves derive their authority. We do not go backward in time for our authority -we find the needful authority in Ramana alone.
Though He tells us about the Quest of the Self by the Question "Who am I?", He also tells us that even now - without our making the Quest - We are that" and that That Itself is we". In other words we are Free by nature and always - that we are Nitya-Muktas, Bondage is unreal.
Hence our Jayanti is not in the future; but now. All Difference including Bondage, Karma, etc., is unreal - He laughs at us for asking how we can become One with Him, saying it is like a man in Tiruvannamalai, asking the way to that very place.

Let Him laugh at us. For that laugh is full of grace, and will make us realise that we are He, and do not need to become He.
There is no room for discouragement, or remorse for our sins, or for fear of failure. For Grace alone exists, and it is He. If we do wrong let us not weep for it, but forget it at once, and joyfully take Refuge in His Grace.

Must we do something, like the Squirrel at the Setu-Bandhan? Well let us think of some of these truths of Ramana's Grace, and surrender our little selves to it, once or twice a day, when we awake. At other times, if Remembrance comes of its own accord, let us rejoice in it. If we fail often to stick to our programme, let us not waste thought in sinful regret, but go on with faith in His Grace.

K. Lakshmana Sarma
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 05, 2015, 02:57:02 PM
Om Namo Bhagavate Sri Ramanaya

Dear Fellow Devotee:

Bhagavan's 135th Jayanti - Live Video webcast from Sri Ramanasramam

Date:    06.01.2015

Timings: 09.30 AM (IST) to 11.00 AM (IST)

Kindly visit the link : http://www.gururamana.net/

Web Team
Sriramanasramam
Tiruvannamalai,
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 09, 2015, 02:24:57 PM
Bhagavan's 135 Jayanthi celebration video 2015

http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/portfolio-item/bhagavans-135th-jayanti-celebration-video-2015/
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on January 09, 2015, 06:19:04 PM
namasthe shri balaji

the audio quality of shri nochur was not that ok; hopefully in days to come the same will become better

om namo bhagavathe sri ramanya
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 11, 2015, 12:00:31 AM
Aradhana of Swami Ramanananda Saraswati (May 26, 1914-December 26, 2007) was held on Thursday January 8th. He was born in answer to a prayer by Sri Azhagammal to Bhagavan for a child. His mother passed away when he was young while his father Sri Niranjananda Swamigal took Sannyas. Thus orphaned while very young the child was raised by his aunt Smt. Alamelu and her husband Pitchu Iyer. During childhood he was fortunate to occasionally receive baby-sitting care from Ramana Maharshi.

In Skandasaramam fruits, sweets, etc., gifted by visitors would be distributed to all equally. Nondi, the monkey, was also a beneficiary of this and his portion used to be set aside in a plate if he was not around. Once as baby Venkataraman ate from Nondi's plate the monkey suddenly arrived through the window and gave a blow on his face. While the child's reaction was predictable, Sri Bhagavan defended the monkey's action saying you deserve it. Why did you want his share? Be satisfied with your share.Unlike ordinary parents who would appease the beloved child by shooing away the monkey, Bhagavan gave him valuable instructions. The boy became silent and listened to Bhagavan. Swamiji once summarized the teachings he got from Bhagavan as Do not touch the property of others. Be content with what you have. Share equally what you have. Divide it with one and all around you. Help the needy. Be not blind when a wrong is committed before you. Correct it if possible, or at least speak out for the right.

The child grew up to be the second Sarvadhikari of the ashram. By his effort the ashram is flourishing today having grown into an internationally famed spiritual institution.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 12, 2015, 06:56:44 PM
Sivapraksam Pillai's(1875 - 1948) Memorial Day was observed at the ashram on January 12th . He not only elicited the highly original teaching of Bhagavan contained in 'Who am I' but also wrote songs which are inspiring and give hope to men subject to weaknesses of desire. It is noteworthy that Bhagavan commented on his demise Sivaprakasm has merged into the light of Siva.
It was not Bhagavan's way to say, "Surrender and I will look after you." However, the following incident is significant in that regard. About a year before Bhagavan left the body I said to him one afternoon " I am going to sing Bhagavan three stanzas from a poem by Sivaprakasam Pillai because they express what I want to say better than I could." I then sang them. Their meaning is : " I have not followed your teaching or instructions ; but is it proper for a Guru to get disgusted with his devotee as an incorrigible beast and to give him up . If you let me go my own way like this, what is to happen to me ? I shall not reform and you will not correct or change me. Have I any other help in this or the other world except you, my Lord ? What, then, is your idea ? Is this right behavior for you ? " Bhagavan did not immediately reply, which caused me some disappointment. After a minute or two he said: " Whether I do anything or not, your business is only to surrender and keep still." we pay homage to his memory by sharing the book Who am I in many languages.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 14, 2015, 07:36:58 PM
 Ashram wishes you a very happy Pongal.

The sun, symbolizing wisdom, divine knowledge and spiritual light, which receded from you when you reveled in the darkness of ignorance, delusion and sensuality, now joyously turns on its northward course and moves towards you to shed its light and warmth in greater abundance, and to infuse into you more life and energy. Ashram wishes you a very happy Pongal, Makar Sankranti or Lohri. May you soar high in spiritual life and your life be full of vigor like the colorful kites that dot the sky.

Dazzling Sun that swallows up all the universe in your rays, open the lotus of my heart, I pray, O Arunachala!
In sunlight the lotus blossoms, how then could Thou, the Sun of suns hover before me like a flower bee saying Thou art not yet in blossom, O Arunachala

O Love in the shape of Arunachala! Now that by your Grace you have claimed me, what will become of me unless you reveal yourself to me, and I, seeking wistfully for you and harassed by the darkness of the world, am lost How can the lotus blossom without the sight of the sun Thou art the Sun of suns; you cause Grace to well up in abundance and pour forth as a stream!
Ocean of Nectar, Full of Grace, engulfing the universe in Thy Splendour! O Arunachala, the Supreme Itself! be Thou the Sun and open the lotus of my heart in Bliss!

Temples in Tamil Nadu including Sri Ramana Ashram perform special winter worship in the morning hours (pre-dawn 4/4:30 AM) in the month of Margazhi (December 16  January 14). Winter prayers concluded today (January 14) with the onset of Uttarayana or the northward movement of the sun after a period of darkness and cold. The day is celebrated variously as Pongal, Lohri or Makar Sankranti.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 18, 2015, 02:01:19 PM
Mattu Pongal was celebrated on January 16th. Suri Nagamma writes in Letter from Sri Ramanasramam What a great day! I am writing to you, because I just could not contain my joy. On Mattu Pongal day, all over the country, domestic animals are decorated and fed with Pongal. In the Asramam also yesterday morning, several varieties of sweetmeats were prepared and, with garlands made of those sweetmeats, puja to Nandi was performed by drawing ornamental lines with lime powder(kolam) before the cowshed, by tying plantain trees around the pillars, by hanging garlands of green leaves, by bathing all the cows, by placing tilakam (vermilion marks) on their foreheads and garlands around their necks, and by feeding them with Pongal. Finally puja was performed to the chanting of mantras and the breaking of coconuts.
Lakshmi is the queen amongst the cows, is she not? You must see her grandeur! Her forehead was smeared with turmeric powder, and adorned with Kumkum. Around her neck and horns were hung garlands made of roses and several other flowers, as also those made of edibles, and sweets. Besides these, garlands made out of bananas, sugarcane pieces and coconut kernels, were put around her neck. When I saw Lakshmi thus decorated like Kamadhenu, I was overjoyed and felt extremely happy.

Bhagavan, who went out at 9-45 a.m., came to the Gosala (cow-shed) at 10 a.m., to shower his blessings on his children there. While he sat on a chair by the side of Lakshmi, enjoying the sight of the beautiful decorations on her, the devotees gave arati with camphor, chanting Vedic hymns such as Na Karmana etc. I was reminded of Lord Krishna in Repalle when I saw the grand spectacle of Bhagavan standing in the midst of the cows in the Gosala. Not only this, in Brahma Vaivartha Purana it is stated that Krishna is the Paramatma, the Lord of the cow world, and that Radha is Prakriti. The theory in that Purana is that Radha and Madhava are Prakriti and Purusha-the inseparable pair. Standing with his body bent slightly to the left, and with his left hand on Lakshmi, and with the walking stick in his right hand, looking as if it was a flute, with a sparkling smile on the face like the foam on the waves of the ocean of ananda, with a compassionate look towards the group of devotees that had gathered along with the herd of cows, Sri Ramana, the embodiment of grace, it is no surprise if one were reminded of Lord Krishna Himself standing with crossed legs, resting on his toes and playing exquisitely on the flute. If that Krishna is Ramana, what are we to say of our Lakshmi who appears to have been completely oblivious of this world with her ears hanging down, with her eyes closed and enjoying transcendental bliss caused by the touch of Bhagavan's hands on her body Shall I say that she is the embodiment of Prakriti in the shape of Radha Otherwise, how could she understand human language? You would perhaps laugh at my foolish fantasies but take it from me, that sight was so lovely.

Tiruvoodal Utsavam

According to a story in Skanda Purana, once, even Parvati and Parameswara succumbed to the quarrel-mongering of Narada. ?Lakshmi and Vishnu play dice, so why not you? said Narada, and egged them on to play. Parvati was enthusiastic over the idea and persuaded Siva to play dice with her. In the game, Siva lost and Parvati was puffed up with pride and spoke slightingly of him. That is the legend.
After reading it, Bhagavan, his heart full of bhakti, asked me, Have you read this story When I said, Yes, Bhagavan, he said with a voice choked with feeling, The holy festival which is annually performed here on Sankranti day, deals mainly with this quarrel between Uma and Maheswara.

You know, every year, the divine marriage festival is celebrated here and during those days, if anybody were to speak about the festival in Sri Bhagavan's presence, Bhagavan would usually remark with great feeling, This is the marriage festival of Father and Mother.
It is believed that those who participate in Tiruvoodal Utsvam will no longer have any quarrels in their married life.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 27, 2015, 03:50:47 PM

 Yoga Sutra V.

'Manasa svam Chinvata.' Search for one's Self with the mind.

Notes:

1. The self here is one's self; not the Atman. 'It's beyond search. One's self is a little entity; the search is to know whence that idea of 'I' arises; that is to say, who is this little self? In "Ullada Narpadu" Bhagavan says, "The real Self does not say I; the body cannot say I; in between the two arises this thought 'I, and firmly clings to the body; if you search for its nature which is like a phantom devil, it disappears." When thoughts disappear into their source, even this thought I should disappear. This 'I' thought is the primary thought, and the other thoughts can raise only after its raise.

2. This enquiry is sometimes based on the previous practice of watching the breath. Normally, we are not able to catch up with the speed with which one thought succeeds another. It is as if the photographs on the cinema-screen succeeding each other with such rapidity that we get the impression of one continuous action. Therefore, it is only when we can slow down this mental process, and are able to catch each single thought by itself, that we can enquire about it. In slowing down thoughts, we have used the process of watching the breath. (We can also take the illustration of a slow motion picture here, say, of horse-racing.)

3 When a thought by itself appears, Bhagavan asks us to enquire to whom it arises, obviously with one's searching mind, It is an intellectual enquiry, not as some others hold, a negation of all thought. We hold to the thought and try to follow it up by asking to whom it occurs. Obviously it occurs to the notional 'I', for the real 'I' has no thought. Bhagavan asks us to proceed and see whence that notion arises. It must necessarily be from the consciousness; that is to say, to the Atman, where even the I-thought does not exist. If one repeats this process continuously, without any break, the process must lead to the Atman. It is like a stick burning other sticks and finally being consumed by its own fire.

4. There is another slight modification. Instead of questioning ?to whom does the thought occur?, enquire whence the thought arises. We mean any thought, not the thought of 'I' only, all thoughts must arise from the consciousness, and they are directed towards the world and all our ideas connected with it. When we cut the connection with the world, only the consciousness remains; it is the Atman. In this process there is only one step; whence does this thought arise? In the previous paragraph we have talked of a process, where there are two steps; searching for the source of each thought, and searching for the source of the 'I'-thought.

5. These processes are called by Bhagavan the 'sarala-marga', or the straight and easy path. At any rate, they are easy for those who can turn their minds inward and away from the objects of the world. But if one, as a preliminary step, follows the first path of watching the breath, it becomes quite easy for everyone.

6. The point to note is, we do not negate a thought as does the Sankara-method. Sankara says, "When a thought occurs, dismiss it immediately. Here we do not do so; we retain the thought, and attempt to seek its source. I once asked Bhagavan, how it should be possible to trace the root of a tree all the while without remembering the trunk of the tree; how can we go to the source of the thought without holding on to the thought?" Bhagavan replied, "Practice and see."
Bhagavan compares this method to each enemy soldier coming out of the fort alone, when he can be easily killed; If one thought comes out, one can easily kill it. If all the warriors in the fort rally forth at once, it will be difficult to fight them. Therefore, slow down the speed of the thoughts first; catch each thought, and by seeking its source, destroy it.
In the supplement to "Ullada Narpadu" there is a verse which lends support to the idea that this Self-enquiry is performed without the mind. The matter will be elucidated in the explanation to come, of the next aphorism. In this aphorism it is clearly stated that it is the mind which carries on this Self-enquiry.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 29, 2015, 08:10:43 PM
 

Today being the day of Thai Krittikai Ramana Puranam was recited by devotees in the New Hall from 7 AM to 5 PM with breaks. Poet-saint Muruganar wrote Ramana Sannadi Murai in the style of the sacred Tamil epic Tiruvachakam by the great saint Manickavachagar in praise of Lord Siva. However the first edition of Ramana Sannadi Murai did not have a poem similar to Siva Puranam of Tiruvachakam. Five years later on Thai Krittika day of 1938 Muruganar completed Ramana Puranam following the style of Siva Puranam.
Ramana Puranam contains 540 verses compared to 95 verses of Siva Puranam. After writing the first 200 or so verses Muruganar left the manuscript with Ramana Maharshi who graciously wrote more than 300 verses and gave the title Ramana Puranam to the work. It is comforting to know that this great work shows the way to overcome destiny by loving Him who enforces the destiny!

Victory to the golden feet of him
who distils a rare nectar
in the hearts of the devotees
who seek his company,
to ease the triple torment,
of destiny so hard to allay!
Those who do not know
how to dispel their suffering
by putting down their luggage,
[as they travel] in the train
that is the great refuge
which supports them all,
will, out of egoism,
keep that burden upon their heads,
convinced it is they who support it,
and in vain endure eternal suffering.
Sun of dharma who scorches those ghost-like ones
who show no loving conduct
so that they suffer unbearable misery!
It is not the fault of dharma
that those in whom there is no love
perish, quaking with agony
like boneless worms
exposed to the mid-day sun.
The ripe crop of destiny,
like a shadow, never goes away,
but follows and clings to those
who commit sinful deeds,
as if unable to control themselves.
By meditating upon the twin feet
of The Lord who knows what is written,
he who destroys and reduces to nothing
the burden of fate, written [upon the heads]
of the most excellent of his devotees,
the saint Markandeya overcame,
through the intensity of his love
for the one who ordained his destiny,
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Jewell on January 29, 2015, 10:52:59 PM
Dear Sri Balaji,

Thank You so much for this heart touching post!!!

With all love and prayers,



(http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/6c/ea/22/6cea224dac9b10db01439b42f7626217.jpg)(http://gallery.yopriceville.com/downloadfullsize/send/5196)
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 04, 2015, 11:11:29 AM
Today being Thai Pusham (also the Aradhana day of Niranjananda Swamigal) a solemn worship of Lord Skanda (Murugan) and the shrine of Niranjananda Swamigal was performed in addition to regular shrine worship.

Being a Sannyasi brother of a Mahatma, managing the ashram was an onerous responsibility. The ashram was a place where even a squirrel felt like the King of the Universe and in such an atmosphere it was not easy to manage devotees with diverse mind-sets. The job required immense determination, dedication and the courage to do what is right even if it lead to criticism. Swamiji lived the spirit of the Bhagavad Gita verse:
yasya sarve samrambh kmasakalpavarjit |
jngnidagdhakarma tamhu paita budh

One whose undertakings are all free from desire and whose activity has been purified in the flame of wisdom, is termed a sage by those who know.

Swamiji hardly talked to Bhagavan directly but he never did anything without Bhagavan's direct or indirect consent. The following is an instance where he incurred the displeasure of a famous man by doing what is right as narrated by Balarama Reddiar: Bhagavan's brother had to endure considerable criticism while managing the ashram. Even so, there was little doubt that Bhagavan used him as his instrument. When Swamiji felt an inner prompting from Bhagavan, he confidently acted on it. Paul Brunton's book, A Search in Secret India, made the world know that the Maharshi, a unique sage of this century, was living in Tiruvannamalai. Brunton was a professional writer. In later days he would sometimes adopt the Maharshi's teachings without giving due acknowledgment. When the ashram authorities realized this, they decided to stop him from taking notes in the Hall. One day in 1939, while Brunton was taking notes Swamiji boldly walked into the hall, stood next to Bhagavan and told Munagala Venkataramiah to tell Brunton in English that he was no longer permitted to take notes while sitting before Bhagavan. Brunton looked at Venkataramiah and asked, Is this also Bhagavan's view Venkataramiah did not reply and Bhagavan, who was quietly sitting there, didn't say a word either. A few tense moments passed. Then Brunton stood up and left the Hall. That was the last time he took notes. It was very unusual to see the Sarvadhikari appear so bold and authoritative before the Maharshi. He must have felt that this exploitation must stop and confident that Bhagavan was behind him
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 10, 2015, 11:10:24 PM
Two days ago the meomorial of Swami Rajeshwarananda was observed. We give below his writing from 'Thus Spake Ramana'.
Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi was the personification of emancipation, the source of supreme peace, and the boundless ocean of freedom. He was indeed the riddle of all life on earth. His silent and sacred look was significant to in still the nectar of Self‑knowledge that became a part and parcel of our constitution and the very vitality of our life. Bhagavan Sri Ramana was the ideal of the human race. He was the wonder of the world with the perfume of spiritual peace. He was the secret of many masterminds. His life is a study in divine illumination based on the dynamic silence.

All worries and wounds of the world simply melted in his presence like ice before fire. His was a discovery of a lost technique in divine awareness, a gift to humanity. He touched life at all aspects, not cramped and confined by any. No school of philosophy, cult, creed, yoga and the like could claim him, as he did not fit easily into any readymade classification. He lived free and remained free and let everyone remain free likewise. A sage, a philosopher, a recluse, an incarnation of God or Being  none of these terms adequately describe him. They fall flat since he transcends them. He was not the present day product of some past tradition. No Guru or scriptures made him great or illuminated him. He was unique in remaining true to himself and being himself. His extensive knowledge of sastras and bhashyas came to him after his Self‑realization. He set before us, as the glory and goal of life, the recovery of full divine consciousness of our own native and naked nature which is not something to be created or attained but which is fully aware of itself with an awareness that can neither begin nor end, as it is eternal. He proclaimed the Absolute as the Self, the I AM in each individual life, ever being itself. Such a realization endows every one ultimately with the Pure Consciousness, a state of impersonality, timelessness, causelessness, egolessness, freedom and
peace. He was himself a testimony for such an august revelation that always stands at the very doorstep of one and all. Thus the heart of our being is the heart of the universe. It is there that illusions and dreams, confusions and contradictions take to flight and illumination floods in with the Kindly Light in one's life, be the individual black or brown, white or yellow.

His was the cure‑all that restores the human race to its lost heritage and happiness, bereft of social, political and economic diseases of the present day, together with their hundred and one ghosts. The remedy for all such troubles that divide man from man, class from class, nation from nation, and that spring up like weeds into new growths again and again, lies in awakening the spiritual consciousness of men and nature which unites them. No society or country can endure without a spiritual basis, a moral basis, a recognition of the value of fellowship, brotherhood and neighbourhood.

It is not a datum of sense to result in materialism and naturalism. It is not a stream of ideas to result in subjectivism and solipsism. It is not acosmism, anthropomorphism, manicheanism, and the like. It is not idealism or realism, optimism or pessimism. Nor is it an amalgam of schisms. Reality is not existent but Existence. It is not consciousness of but consciousness  as subjective substance. Objects bring in distinction in the empirical knowledge and are not applicable to the distinctionless, non-dual Absolute, the Self. Bhagavan Sri Ramana stands for the unity of existence, the non‑duality of the Godhead and the harmony of religions.

He shines as the sun of wisdom in the firmament of the Self, radiating serenity, sublimity and solemnity. He is a beacon light, a centre of the spiritual world‑impulse. His teachings are refreshingly plain and powerful. They throw open the floodgates of the soul and make the living waters of the highest consciousness rush forth. His gospel, free from any dogma or doctrine, is not hampered by
fossilised traditions. It is as broad as the sky, as deep as the sea, and as universal as the rays of the sun. He kindles in everyone of us the dormant divinity, the potential power, the primary principle, which is at the back of the flow and flicker of the finite phenomena. His very life was a practical demonstration of the reality of Brahman, the Supreme Self and the unsubstantiality of the phenomenal world. His gospel reveals clearly the divinity of the soul, the oneness of humanity and the indivisibility of the Godhead, not as articles of belief or opinion, cult or creed, dogma or doctrine but as the truths of his own experience. To know Bhagavan is to be Bhagavan himself. Because Knowing is Being and Being is Knowing. Even a single word from Bhagavan's holy lips was enough
to enable us to carry it all through our life to stir the soul, and awaken it to its intrinsic immortality and infinity, whereas splendid orations from persons without divine wisdom shouted from platforms fall flat on our ears and fail to carry any effect at all.

Bhagavan's sacred and solid silence spoke louder than words at times, and his solemn and sublime look was vividly significant at all times. It is the greatest privilege to say that the writer has been blessed with a rare opportunity of having been in contact
with Bhagavan Sri Ramana for nearly 44 years. He has also had several occasions of prolonged and continuous stay at Bhagavan's Lotus Feet for months together. He feels from the bottom of his heart highly fortunate to claim that he is mere dust of the Holy Feet of our beloved and blessed Bhagavan unto which is offered this publication as homage.
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Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 12, 2015, 11:23:28 AM
In honor of Maha Sivaratri which falls on Tuesday February 17th we will have special posts on the glory of Lord Siva subject to the condition that it must have been mentioned by Ramana Maharshi at least once.

What is Maha Sivaratri? The day on which the ancient and wonderful linga of Arunachala took shape is the asterism of Ardra in the month of Mrigasira. And the day on which Vishnu and the other devas worshipped the Lord who emerged in the form of effulgence is the day of Maha Sivaratri.

Kunju Swamigal reminiscences says Ramakrishna Swami once took the permission of Sri Bhagavan to live on Bhiksha(alms) a tradition expected of monks. Being inexperienced and shy he walked to a street and shouted 'Bhiksha! Bhiksha!' One Lakshmi Ammal recognized him as a devotee and invited him into the house, washed his feet and served food. Then she asked him to recite Siva Puranam, which he did not know. She herself recited it, lighted camphor and prostrated before Ramakrishna Swami and asked him to eat. Swami was very embarrassed with his ignorance and he stopped going out for bhiksha. When Sri Bhagavan heard this, he said laughingly, What to do If you beg because of poverty, you will have to bend your knees, plead with others. He wanted to follow the tradition and he asked for bhikska in a dignified manner. Sadhus should be familiar with Siva Puranam and the songs from peria puranam. In the north you should recite the l5th Chapter of the Gita and Siva Mahimna Stotra. When you are offered bhiksha by someone, you must recite these before starting to eat."
What is Siva Mahimna Stotra referred by Ramana Maharshi here It is a grand hymn in praise of Lord Siva. The author of this well-known scripture is Pushpadanta, a renowned Gandharva (heavenly musician) who wrote this hymn in order to calm down Śiva's wrath. Why was Śiva angry? Because Pushpadanta, while attempting to steal some flowers from a king's garden, happened to step on a particular "grass" sacred to Śiva. It is a long story really. However, the important thing in the present hymn is the detailed descriptions of a series of events associated with Śiva. It is also a hymn filled with devotion. That is why, it is highly recommended for Svādhyāya (Study and Recitation of Sacred Scriptures, by sages)

A copy of Siva Mahimna Stotra as translated by Gabriele Pradipika can be downloaded from the link given below with his kind permission. Verse 32 of the Siva Mahimna Stotra is instructive ?O Lord, if the black mountain be the ink, the ocean the inkpot, the stout branch of the wish-fulfilling tree a pen, the earth the writing pad, and if taking these the Goddess of Learning (Saraswati) writes for eternity, even then Your virtues will remain unexhausted. (32)

http://sriramanamaharshi.org/downl?/Siva_Mahimna_Stotram.pdf
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 12, 2015, 09:09:40 PM
The latest discourse by Brahma Sri Nochur Venkatraman on Aksharamanamalai is now available for download here
http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/resource_centre/audio/aksharamanamalai-talks-jan-2014/
If you wish to learn how to chant Aksharamanamalai here is the link
http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org//sri-arunachala-akshara-/
If you like it as an app here is the link
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details
If you would like to listen to aksharamanamalai here is the link
http://www.sriramanamaharshi.org/resource//tamil-parayana/
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on February 13, 2015, 05:49:55 AM
many thanks balaji sir.

hope this includes / is what done in english recently at asram

om namo bhagavathe sri ramanaya
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 15, 2015, 12:59:39 PM

Sri Ramana Maharshi selected ten verses from, Sivanandalahari, the famous composition of Adi Sankaracharya in Sanskrit consisting of one hundred verses in praise of Lord Siva and arranged them in a specific order.

These verses are very potent in invoking the Grace of Lord Siva. They also contain spiritual ideas which are revealing, inspiring and insightful. One of the verses asks ?Kim Durlabham? meaning what is impossible for one who worships Lord Shiva. The verses also caution readers against wasting time worshipping superficial gods.

As the auspicious Maha Sivaratri approaches we give below each verse selected by Sri Ramana Maharshi, their concise meaning (from Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi), original verse in Sanskrit, English transliteration and complete meaning of the verses. You can read it here. http://sriramanamaharshi.org/download/Sivananda_Lahari.pdf
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 24, 2015, 12:29:46 PM

 Ramana Yoga Sutra VI.

VI, 'Majjatha va,' By dipping in

Commentary : 1. In the previous aphorisms, Bhagavan advocated the discipline of going away from name and form, which, if they exist, form an obstacle in the path. In this aphorism, the discipline taught is a unique one in that it takes the very form and name used to denote the ulterior Divinity as steps to Realization of the ultimate Divine, the Atman. For, as it is said in "Ullada Narpadu." "By whatever name or form you worship, or in whatever way you worship the worship will lead you to That which has no name or form."

2. A name is but an idea; it reminds you of a quality, that is, 'guna', or of an action 'kriya', of a genesis, ' jati' or of a symbol having a particular significance. At least that is so in Sanskrit. If we say, 'Siva', it means 'good to the universe'; in that word an attribute is explained. If we say 'Vishnu', that means 'One who is omnipresent'. Being everywhere is an action. If we say 'the Formless', we Indicate the genesis of a form. And if in mantra-sastra we say 'A', we use the symbol for the Creator. Therefore, the use of all the different languages means the use of different ideas. The basis of all languages is sound, and the different manifestations of sound are the letters, the basis of all creation. In the beginning there was the Word; the word could not have existed without an idea; the Word should have been comprised of different deflections of sound; and it was the Word out of which the world arose. great musician Thyagaraja, He says that without a knowledge of music, the art of utilizing sound, and without a knowledge of the sound in the Muladhara (sound as a concept), one can never attain Liberation. He followed bhakti-marga and his practice was also 'dipping in', into the music, and merging with the primal sound, He also used the technique of yoga, by the control of the movement of prana through the various channels and through the sahasrara.

3. The worship of the Divine through words or ideas generally means with the help of hymns and songs, or stuti and mantras, a combination of words of mystical import, or namas, the names of the Lord;
In this aphorism, Bhagavan advocates sticking to the name, or the mantra. He says in "Upadesa Saram", Japa of mantras is better than hymnal praise; and the mental repetition of the mantra or the name is more effective than the utterance of either, aloud or in whisper." And then he explains, "If you continue sticking to the sound or the idea, there will come a stage when there will be only a sound, undifferentiated even into various letters," As you go deeper and deeper, even the sound dissolves, and that process he calls, 'dipping in'.

4. There is a midway between this 'dipping in' and the previous path advocated that of Self-enquiry. When you repeat a name, or mantra, Bhagavan says, that if you watch the source of the sound or Him that produces the sound ( that being the Atman alone) you have followed the sound to the Atman. This is a finer way of Atma-vichara. That is what he taught to Gauapati Muni. Here is the reconciliation between mantra sastra and Vedanta.

5. As with the name, the process of 'dipping in' can be carried on with the help of a form. The most popular form taken up is that of an idol, an icon, a symbol like a swastika, a yantra like the six-pointed star, or a chakra in the form of a Sri Chakra. Hold on to any of these forms. Remember them every minute of your life. The forms disappear. There will be a light, ? not of this earth, ? it will be The Light, and the Light will disappear into the sunya or the void, or 'hrid'. In technical language, the name is mentioned as nada, and the final form of the form as the Kala. Both disappear into the bindu, the vast void, wherein take place these phenomena, or creation. In this method, we see clearly that thoughts are clung to as such, forms are clung to as such. There is no effort to reach their source. The source is reached automatically. Negate all thoughts of name and form except that which you have adopted. With this as your aid, dip in, dip into yourself. Reject every other idea. As the source of creation, you are, you, being the Atman.

6. In this process of 'dipping in' are included every sadhana advocated in any religion. Clinging to a name or form is bhakti. Worshipping a form or name is karma. Knowing a form or name and its significance is janana. Keeping your attention fixed on a name ?r form to the exclusion of all others is raja yoga; All the religions of the world have their basis in this: clinging to the One and 'dipping in'. All meet in the Ram ana-doctrine. This is the method he has advocated as mentioned under tha previous aphorism, as the real vichara. In "Ullada Narpadu", he says, " Do not utter 'I-I' aloud ; collect all your prana; dip into That. That is real Atma-vichara.

7. It may be interesting to note that the idea that sound, being the most subtle medium through which we can dip into the Atman, is also the opinion held by our great musician Thyagaraja, He says that without a knowledge of music, the art of utilizing sound, and without a knowledge of the sound in the Muladhara (sound as a concept), one can never attain Liberation. He followed bhakti-marga and his practice was also 'dipping in', into the music, and merging with the primal sound, He also used the technique of yoga, by the control of the movement of prana through the various channels and through the sahasrara.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 02, 2015, 10:42:09 AM

The Primavera Tree (Tabebuia donnell-smithii) whose bright yellow blossoms have earned it the nickname, Gold Tree, only blooms for a few days each year. This year the Ashram's Primavera situated just behind the Ashram archives building burst into full bloom on Mahasivaratri as if to say All nature worship Him

On the night of Maha Sivaratri ashram offered two new publications at the Feet of the Lord. These are Robert Butler's English translation of Arunachala Puranam from original in Tamil by Saiva Ellapa Navalar and Arunachala Mahima in Hindi by Kamalnath Tripathi.

Specific references to Arunachala occur in various Sanskrit texts of antiquity. Ramana Maharshi gathered all references to Arunachala from five sources in Sanskrit and copied out the 2659 verses with his own hand. This Sanskrit collection, called Arunachala Mahatmya, was translated into English and published by Sri Ramanasramam in 1957 as the glory of Arunachala. Arunachala Mahima in Hindi is based on this but is not a literal translation. For example the original ?Arunachala Mahatmyam in Skandapuranam gives 96 names of Arunachala whereas this book lists 108 names by including names from other sources. One such name is Smritimatrenasantushtaya namah meaning one who is pleased by mere remembrance.

Apart from Sanskrit verses of Arunachala Mahatmyam, Ramana Maharshi also found a Tamil poetical work of the glory of Arunachala called Arunachala Puranam. While reading or narrating Arunachala Puranam, He would often shed tears of joy.

Robert Butler, an English devotee and a Tamil scholar, has translated the original Arunachala Puranam from Tamil to English for the benefit of English readers. That the devotional fervor of Saiva Ellapa Navalar has guided the pen of Robert Butler becomes very clear from the following quote found in the book: One thing that is striking in all these conversations is the fact that Bhagavan takes these Puranic records to be the literal truth, and not some literary invention?. He adds The English translation of the Mahatmya has a footnote stating that this is a folk etymology only, but Bhagavan?s quoting of it appears to be evidence to the contrary.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 06, 2015, 01:04:50 PM
Ashram releases 'Who am I' App.


Q: I have not read the four Vedas, ten Upanishads or eighteen Puranas. Is there any way for me to get Divine Grace?

A: Yes there is a way! Sri Ramana Maharshi has bestowed on humanity a set of very simple instructions which when practiced will certainly attract Divine Grace. These instructions are contained in a Tamil booklet called Who am I. They have been translated into many languages including English. Ashram has created an application which plays the Who am I Teachings in audio form in Tamil and English. The free app can be downloaded here https://play.google.com/store/apps/details

Please listen to the teachings whenever you wish to be inspired by the gracious words of the great Master. It will calm the mind and help us see clearly through difficult situations threatening us.
The app was released on the auspicious occasion of Masi Magam during Nataraja abhisekham with the prayer that all may receive the Good Lord's grace in ample measure. Jai Arunachalaramana!
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 10, 2015, 01:54:25 PM
 Ramana Yoga Sutra VII.


Sakshat bhati Directly experienced.

Notes : 1. In aphorism five, nirgunopasana, or the formless worship of the Brahman is advocated. In aphorism six the way of saguna upasana or worship of the Lord with form is explained. In this aphorism, Bhagavan explains that the result of successful conclusion of spiritual efforts lies in the Atman flashing directly in our experience.

2. Experiences are of two kinds; one is mediate that is through a medium and the other is immediate that is direct without a medium. We see through the eye and know a thing, therefore it is mediate experience. Suddenly a thought flashes intuitively in the mind. That is immediate experience. The experience of the Brahman is always immediate, and unlike the usual experiences does not involve the triad of experiencer, experienced and experience. The experience of the Atman is direct without a medium. Bhagavan has explained it with the analogy of an object fallen in a well; "Think of a person going down a well in search of some lost article. He sees it and takes it, but is unable to talk about it to the people outside the well; similarly, a man having the experience of the Atman (in Samadhi) is unable to speak about it when he is in Samadhi. Unlike dipping in water, even after he returns to the normal consciousness from the state of Samadhi he cannot express it in words. For, words come after the emergence of the world. And in the experience of Brahman there is no objective phenomenon.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 11, 2015, 05:34:06 PM
 Sundram Iyer Remembrance Day.

On Tuesday March 10th the anniversary of Sundaram Iyer (father of Ramana Maharshi) was observed in the ashram. The offspring's success is a measure of the Parent's spiritual merit. During the early stages of Bhagavan's stay in Arunachala, ignorant people used to say How sad The religious deeds(danam and dharmam) of Sundaram Iyer have come to naught. Today the world knows better. One the names in Sri Ramana ashtotram(108 Names) is Sudararya-tapah- phalaya meaning the fruit of penance of Sundaram Iyer. In the 'necklet of nine gem on Arunachala' composed by Ramana Maharshi we read Of all the holy places sacred to Siva on earth is Thiruchuzhi, called Poṅgum puvi, or the effervescent earth (known as Tirsoolapuram in scriptures) (chuzhi means eddy). I was born there to the virtuous tapasvin Sundaram Iyer and his faithful wife Sundari (Azhagammal). Arunachala  the one who abides as the munificent Lord of the resplendent red Hill in order that the lustre of Enlightenment may shine forth and that the light of the effulgent Atman may flourish in the world  rescued me from the tyranny of the despicable senses. He ended the agony of my worldly life by granting me His own state that my heart may rejoice forever in the wealth of eternal Bliss.

Om Sundararya tapah phalay namah
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 17, 2015, 04:46:30 PM
Sri Vidhya Havan 2015
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 17, 2015, 04:50:34 PM

 Ramana Yoga Sutra VII.


Sakshat bhati' Directly experienced.

Notes : 1. In aphorism five, nirgunopasana, or the formless worship of the Brahman is advocated. In aphorism six the way of saguna upasana or worship of the Lord with form is explained. In this aphorism, Bhagavan explains that the result of successful conclusion of spiritual efforts lies in the Atman flashing directly in our experience.

2. Experiences are of two kinds; one is mediate that is through a medium and the other is immediate that is direct without a medium. We see through the eye and know a thing, therefore it is mediate experience. Suddenly a thought flashes intuitively in the mind. That is immediate experience. The experience of the Brahman is always immediate, and unlike the usual experiences does not involve the triad of experiencer, experienced and experience. The experience of the Atman is direct without a medium. Bhagavan has explained it with the analogy of an object fallen in a well; "Think of a person going down a well in search of some lost article. He sees it and takes it, but is unable to talk about it to the people outside the well; similarly, a man having the experience of the Atman (in Samadhi) is unable to speak about it when he is in Samadhi. Unlike dipping in water, even after he returns to the normal consciousness from the state of Samadhi he cannot express it in words. For, words come after the emergence of the world. And in the experience of Brahman there is no objective phenomenon.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 17, 2015, 04:54:06 PM
Ramana Yoga Sutra VIII.

VIII. ' Aham Aham Iti.' .As I  I.

Notes: 1.The direct experience that comes to a seeker as a fruition of his endeavours is the experience of the Ultimate as 'I I'. Various descriptions have been given of this experience, in the negative way, e. g. It is neither light nor darkness; It gives light so It is called The Light. It is neither knowledge nor ignorance; It gives knowledge, so it is Knowledge (chit). In modern language too, It is not a being nor a becoming, but It exists; therefore It is called Sat, In contrast to all other things that disappear. Bhagavan calls this experience the ' I' - experience, In that state one must have been there to experience It; It must be devoid of any other experience; then only can It be said to be the Self and nothing else.

2. Some have asked. "There being only one experience, why should Bhagavan have used two I's 'I-I' One explanation is that the second 'I' does not indicate a subsequent experience; the second 'I' is used to confirm the experience. Others say, " In nirvikalpa Samadhi, you get a similar experience, but it is not a constant thing; like the flash of lightning, it appears and disappears; so, two ' I' s' are used. Finally, the experience becomes a constant one."

3. We may add that in yoga, in the experience there is a slight tinge of the individuality, and the mind can be said to have existed in a very, very subtle state, called 'visuddha sattva'. But in actual experience it makes no difference. The experience is something like a throb; that is why it may be called 'jnana spanda', 'a throb of knowledge'.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 20, 2015, 12:13:36 AM
How Sri Chakra Puja began

Sri Vidya Havan will be performed on Friday March 20, 2015 as per the notice attached. The program will be webcast live starting around 11:15 AM or so. Please check Facebook for live posting.

Considering that neither Bhagavan nor Niranjananda Swamigal was a Devi Upasaka the question arises how did such an advanced worship of the Divine Mother start in Sri Ramana ashram. Best answer is that only Bhagavan or Niranjanada Swamigal know. However some facts have emerged by talking to senior devotees. Niranjananda Swamigal kept a Sri Chakra made of gold about 4 inches by inches in an iron safe in the ashram. Raju Sastrigal used to offer worship to the Sri Chakra in the evening after Veda Parayana. In his absence another priest or a student from the Veda Patasala used to conduct the worship. When Mother's temple was built a place was specifically kept for the installation of the Meru Prasthara Chakra. The Sri Chakra was installed with the Meru.

Since the opening of the temple in March 1949, regular elaborate worship of Sri Chakra was done by the priests which went up to 9:30 PM in the night. There were no visitors to the Puja. Later the worship was simplified to the present form. We may add here that Sri Chakra Puja was re-started by Major Chadwick after the lapse of many years in 1960s or so.

During Bhagavan's days on the Hill, Spiritual Grace was in abundance but material comforts were minimal or non-existent. It is possible that some great devotee may have advised Niranjananda Swamigal that worship of the Sri Chakra will lead to prosperity and he started the worship. But this is at best a surmise.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Ravi.N on March 20, 2015, 06:52:22 AM
Balaji,
Here is an excerpt from 'A Sadhu's Reminiscences of Ramana maharshi' by Sadhu Arunachala who personally witnessed the consecration of Meru Chakra by Sri Bhagavan:

Bhagavan was deeply interested in the construction of the Shrine built over his Mother?s tomb. He attended every function in connection with it, placing his hands in blessing on the various objects that were to be enclosed in the walls. At night, when no one was about he would walk round and round the construction consecrating it. That he should take such a demonstrative part in anything has a very deep significance. It was extremely rare and has been doubted by many, but I myself was an eye-witness to these things and can vouch for their truth.
He took a personal interest in the cutting of the Sri Chakra Meru in granite which was installed in the completed temple and is regularly worshipped. This is about one and a half feet square and proportionately high.
At the time of the Kumbhabhishekam, on the penultimate night before the sacred water was poured over the images, he personally superintended the installation in the inner shrine. It was an extremely hot night and with three charcoal retorts for melting the cement adding to the heat, it must have been intolerable inside the airless cave of the inner shrine, but for about an hour and a half Bhagavan sat there telling the workmen what to do.
On the last night of the function he went in procession, opening the doors of the new Hall and temple and passing straight up into the Inner Shrine, where he stood for some five minutes with both hands laid on the Sri Chakra in blessing. I happened that night to be at his side the whole time; this was unusual as I deliberately avoided taking prominent part in such things, preferring to watch from the back. Strangely, something made me keep by him on this occasion and on account of this I was able to understand his deep interest in the Temple and
especially in the Sri Chakra. It was because of this knowledge that I was instrumental after Bhagavan?s passing, in persuading the Ashram authorities to institute the Sri Chakra Poojas six times a month. The explanation for this unusual action on Bhagavan?s part may be found in the necessity that Siva must be always accompanied by Shakti. The world would stop otherwise. On the only occasion when such a Pooja was performed shortly after the dedication of the Temple during the life of Bhagavan, he refused to go for his evening meal but insisted on remaining a witness of it until the end. When someone remarked how magnificent it had been and it would be a good thing if such Poojas could be performed regularly, ?Yes,? replied Bhagavan, ?but who will take the trouble??
The trouble is being taken now and it undoubtedly has the blessings of Bhagavan.

Here is another excerpt from 'Talks with Sri Ramana maharshi' :
19th April, 1937 Talk 405.
A respectable and orthodox gentleman asked about Sri Chakra.
M.: It has a deep significance. There are 43 corners with sacred syllables in them. Its worship is a method for concentration of mind. The mind is wont to move externally. It must be checked and turned within. Its habit is to dwell on names and forms, for all external objects possess names and forms. Such names and forms are made symbolic mental conceptions in order to divert the mind from external objects and make it dwell within itself. The idols, mantras, yantras, are all meant to give food to the mind in its introvert state, so that It may later become capable of being concentrated, after which the superb state is reached automatically.

It is said in the arunachala purana that the Holy arunachala hill is itself in the form of Sri Chakra and sri Bhagavan always advised pradakshina( circumambulation).
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 20, 2015, 01:07:28 PM
Dear Ravi Sir

Very nice, I noted the points for Sri Chakra puja  and Thank you very much for a detailed Sri Chakra Puja celebration  during Bhagavan days.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 20, 2015, 05:46:25 PM


 Sri Vidya Havan.

Vishwanatha Swamigal has said that Niranjanananda Swamigal used to read Lalita Sahasranamam daily. Occasionally when he missed Parayana for any reason the reading was completed by Ramana Maharshi on his behalf.

Lalita Sahasranamam has the answer to the question raised in the previous Facebook post about the origin of Sri Chakra Puja in the ashram. One name of Divine Mother Lalita is Siva-shakti-iyka-rupini which means the Mother Lalita forms the unity of Siva with His Shakti. Thus Divine Mother's worship in the ashram is related to Sri Ramana Maharshi just as Sunlight is related to the Sun. We now quote from Kapali Sastriar's book the Maharshi:

After the Veda Parayana, both of us were taken by the Sarvadhikari to his office. From the cupboard Raju Sastri took out a plate and handed it to him and he in turn placed it in my hand. It was a few inches square, but its weight betrayed to me the metal immediately; indeed, it was solid gold. The diagram was Sri Chakram; I saw the whole thing, it was neatly done. Then there was another, a smaller plate; that too was taken out. The third one contained letters inscribed in the diagram; it was Subrahmanya Yantra. He spoke to me how he was able to get it all done, why so much care for safety had to be taken etc. We all came out and he took us to another hut where I was shown Meru in solid rock. The workmanship was indeed quite fine. I do not remember to have seen such a big sized Meru in rock though I have myself worshipped one made of gold (small size).
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 24, 2015, 11:53:58 PM
 Ramana Yoga Sutra Conclusion.

IX. 'Brahma matram'. Only Brahman

Notes: People dealing in scriptures will question whether, the universe being real, and this experience being of a short duration, the Atman experienced can be real. They also say that in the texts the Atman is said to be infinitesimally thin (thanvi). But Bhagavan says it is big, too. How to reconcile? The texts themselves give the answer; which Bnagavan has also repeated; "Smaller than the smallest, and bigger than the biggest", says the Upanishad.

The sruti says, "Verily, all this is Brahman". Then there can be no difference between the Atman and the Brahman. In the Atman there is a superimposition of the manifested cosmos, which alone is apparent to you, and which prevents you from seeing the Atman. In the state of knowledge, the superimposed mental knowledge disappears, and, call it whatever you will, Atman or Brahman, that alone remains, without a second. As the srutl says: ' Ekameva' (Only one); ' Adviteeyam' (no second).

X .'Kevalam', Only. Notes i

Philosophy expounds three types of difference? 'sajateeya' the difference between a horse and a horse. 'Vijateeya ' like the difference between a horse and a cow. 'Svagata' is the difference between the hand and the foot of one person. Bhagavan says that none of these types of difference exist in Brahman. It is like an ocean; all salt water. Not even like an ocean because, salt exists there in a state of dissolution. There is nothing dissolved in the Atman - It is pure.

This aphorism is necessary to controvert the position that the Brahman is saguna. Otherwise, how could a cosmos with various attributes come out of It? Bhagavan says, "No. It has no attributes; It is pure, undefiled by any admixture. "It is, in Sanskrit, 'ghana ' not giving scope to any other thing?. Now, the Ultimate is ananda-ghana not anandamaya.

EPILOGUE

These aphorisms are the very words of Sri Bhagavan. All but one of them have been taken from the first Sanskrit verse he ever wrote, in about 1913, the famous Hridaya Kuhara Sloka forming chapter II of Ramana Gita. Aphorism number four has been taken from Ramana Gita itself (canto VI, ver. 5), the explanations, several of them, were given by Bhagvaan himself. The rest has been culled out from other philosophical texts, so that the author of this brochure makes no claim for originality. Nor does he claim that Bhagavan's teaching, except in one point, is original. So far as he is aware, Bhagavan's teaching and explanations are in tune with the best traditional Advaitic thought and texts.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 28, 2015, 10:22:08 PM
 Happy Ramanavami 2015.

Sri Ramanavami was celebrated at the ashram today. This is a good day to recall Sri B. V. Narasimha Swami's comparison of Ramana Maharshi with Lord Rama

Sri Rama is described in the first chapter of Ramayana by a set of phrases.Taking up those epithets one by one (except those confined to a Kshatriya king like Sri Rama) these are seen clearly applicable to Rama Maharshi (His name really is Venkata Rama). Absorbed contemplation of these is the form of meditation herein described.
Niyatatma means of fixed principles.Maharshi is a man of fixed principles. You know what to expect of him in given circumstances. His non-resistance of evil even when attacked by robbers, his prohibition of vengeance even when a disciple wanted to hurl it at the robbers, his endurance of pain, obloquy, humiliation at the hands of M.B and others create in one, an idea what firmness of principle denotes, how different it is from unctuous but lip-deep profession of virtue.

Dyutiman i.e., one full of bright ideas, illumination. If Maharshi applies his mind to anything, his freshness and resourcefulness are evidenced by his offering bright and useful suggestions. For instance in rendering religious works into English, his suggestions are often luminous and striking.

Dhritiman means courageous, ever happy. Both epithets apply to him equally well. Whether it is potsherds flung by mischievous boys at his refuge in Patala Lingam, or huge stones rolled down the hill towards his seat by M.J.P. or the threat of thieves to throw the milk of euphorbia tirucalli into his eyes or the robbers threat to beat him again unless he discloses where money is kept or the threat of M.B. that he must go down the hill as he is not a jnani to warrant his residence on the hill  whichever the shape in which fear approaches him, he is not frightened. Fear is only to him who loves the body and things attached thereto, and fears their loss.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on April 15, 2015, 02:10:39 AM
Mahanirvana Day

14.04.2015

Time: 8.00 PM (IST) to 9.15 PM (IST)

SRI RAMANASRAMAM

TIRUVANNAMALAI


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-YnAk13KaM
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on April 15, 2015, 06:12:16 PM
65th Aradhana of Bhagavan Sri Ramanamaharshi ? Live Video Streaming ? 16.04.2015 ? 8.30 AM (IST) to 11.30 AM (IST)
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on April 21, 2015, 10:47:58 PM
Experiences of devotees III

According to Bhagavan one cannot become an ascetic simply by donning ochre robes, although he should not avoid it on that account. In 1967, under instructions from Swami Sacchidananda of Holenarasipur I took to asceticism by wearing the kashaya in the sacred place near Arunachaleswara in front of the Patala Linga, where Ramana Bhagavan was in deep meditation for a long time. Afterwards, I could have learnt the rules of asceticism from any other teacher. But having taken Ramana as my Guru, I did not want to learn them from anyone except Bhagavan. So, on 12-9-1967 at about three o clock in the morning while I was in meditation in the old hall next to Bhagavan's samadhi, I prayed to him to teach me the rules of asceticism, as I had taken refuge in him, leaving even the school and the hermitage as a bondage similar to the family. After about an hour, at 4 o clock, Bhagavan began manifesting ill my heart as a luminous figure much brighter than when he was alive. While I was wondering whether it was just a dream, he began to talk. My child, you say you have left the school and hermitage, as you felt them to be a bondage like the family. But what else have you got still left with you he asked
Oh Lord! what more have I got Only this body. I replied.

Leave that also and come he bade me.

I became confused and agitated. According to Ramana, liberation means complete obliteration of body and mind. How can the mind be annihilated With trepidation, I said Lord! I have taken to sanyasa which means that I am reborn. After death, the body is consigned to flames, as a token of my body's death, I have donned the ochre robes having the red hue of fire. Does it not mean that I have given up the body.
Ramana asked Yes, what else is left over I began to think. After taking to sanyas the only real change that has taken place is that instead of white clothes, I now wear orange or red clothes. The body is the same as before. Only in sleep does this body vanish, as consciousness leaves it. I, therefore, told Bhagavan, The I thought is left.

Give up that also. When you cast off that ego, the Supreme Self alone will shine. You catch hold of that Self and be steady. That alone is asceticism. Renunciation is not mere wearing of orange clothes. It is not an article for display. So saying Bhagavan disappeared, blessing me that I would get realisation when the time was ripe.

At 6 o clock in the same evening (12-6-1967), Bhagavan's words came to be fulfilled. Getting detached from the attributes of name, body and senses, filling everything and everywhere man, beast and bird, inside and outside all, without any duality whatsoever-the Self alone shone as pure Existence-Knowledge-Bliss The intellect, mind and ego constituting the little self had vanished into the Real Self, which stood alone as the only ultimate Truth. It is not possible to describe that state in words, for it is beyond words and beyond the mind. Coming from that state to the lower plane. I could only bow to my great Master in reverential gratitude.

One day, impelled by a strong desire, I gave to Bhagavan a small piece of paper with AUM printed on it. He received and handed it back to me immediately and I took it as his instruction. From that day I became Pranavananda. For this initiation, I offered my Master a few Senga nuts as guru dakshina. He accepted the same, ate one and gave the rest to a servant as feed for the peacock.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on April 30, 2015, 01:43:33 AM

  Replica of Old Hall in Tampa, Florida.

The Old Hall in Sri Ramanasramam , Tiruvannamalai is sanctified by Ramana Maharshi?s presence during the last 22 years of His life. Redolent with the aroma of peace and profound spiritual energy, many devotees will bear witness to His very special and unique Presence there. A blessed devotee couple in the US conceived the idea of creating an exact replica of Old Hall in Tampa Florida as a Meditation Hall to serve followers of Ramana Maharshi.

On April 15, 2015 devotees of Ramana Maharshi gathered in Tampa, Florida for a Bhoomi Puja(cornerstone laying ceremony). Bhoomi Puja is a Hindu worship based on scriptures to invoke the Lord?s blessing prior to commencing a building construction. The worship includes seeking forgiveness from the Mother Earth for disturbing the eco-system and includes placing various sacred objects to attract and preserve the auspicious and harmonious vibrations. These include specially consecrated bricks, multi-colored sands from Kanyakumari, Gems (Navaratnam), sacred magnetic stones from Arunachala and Ganges water. Ashram in Tiruvannamalai conducted a special Sri Chakra Puja to invoke the Divine Mother?s blessing for the success of the project.

The Bhoomi Puja started at 10:30 am on Wednesday, April 15. The ceremony also included the chanting of Aksharamanamalai. After the ceremony, all the devotees were served lunch Prasadam at the nearby Hindu Temple.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on May 02, 2015, 08:57:51 PM
On Friday May 1, 2015 Mahakumbhabisekam of Lord Nataraja Temple in Chidambaram was performed in a grand scale. Hundreds of thousands of devotees experienced great Spiritual joy. Everyone had an inspirational story to tell. Many devotees from our ashram and Tiruvannamalai went to attend the ceremony. One fellow devotee was separated from us and was stopped by a huge police force at the entrance to Sannadi street for want of a pass. As he waited in disappointment a Dikshitar totally unknown to him approached him and gave him a Pass!! Chitsabeshaya Mangalam(Auspicious Lord of our Heart) Kanaka Sabhapati ki jai(Victory to the Chairman of Golden Hall) Avyaja Karuna Murtye namaha (Prostration to the Lord of Causeless Compassion) Tiruchitrambalam(Sacred Lord of Heart Temple)
Ramana Maharshi gives Darshan as Lord Nataraja

On the night prior to Deepavali in 1929, the first year of my settling in the Ashram, Bhagavan suggested my going home for the ?Ganges? bath (Gangasnanam), To me (why, to all of us!) the very sight of Bhagavan is a bath in the Ganga, the sight of Bhagavan is the worship of Siva, the sight of Bhagavan is the fulfilment of every ritual and the practice of all austerities. Yet I did not want to go against the mandate of Bhagavan as I went home, late in the night. I was impatient to be back with Bhagavan, so I woke up my wife and children even at 2 am, finished the ceremonial Ganges bath, and hastened to His blessed Presence.

Bhagavan lay reclining on the sofa. It was about 3-30 am; I made the usual prostration and sat down by the sofa. All of a sudden an aura was visible around the head of Bhagavan. It was like the glory with clusters of evenly arranged flames, just as we see round the deities in our temple processions. Bhagavan?s face shone with beaming smiles. It appeared to me that on this occasion Bhagavan was giving darshan (gracious view) of Sri Nataraja, the Lord of the Cosmic Dance. In my ecstasy, I think I must have sung hymns from Thevaram, which I love as dearly as the Vedas. The vision lasted for half an hour, and then the glory vanished.1 At 4 a.m. Bhagavan sat up for His Pansupari.2 I related to Him what I had seen, and Bhagavan again gave a beaming smile.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on May 03, 2015, 07:06:19 AM
thanks for the wonderful posting
an innocent clarification on what  is posted  "At 4 a.m. Bhagavan sat up for His Pansupari"
is this correct? it is a 'news' to me that Bhagavan chewed suparis?
though this is petty & superfluous if some one confirms this....................thanks
om namo bhagavathe sri ramanaya
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Subramanian.R on May 03, 2015, 08:22:49 AM
Dear dr sundaram,

Yes. Sri Bhagavan chewed pan suparis for some time; He was also using snuff for sometime.  He had ganja once in SKANDASRAMAM, when Mother was there.
All these were  only with some purpose.  He told Mother He had ganja because
someone had offered to Him with love.  Ganja had no untoward effect on Him.  He
used snuff to ward off the continuous cold and stuffy nose.  Similarly He had been
using supari-pan, for some time because He had problems of indigestion.  He
had left all these practices swiftly with His great dispassion.

Importantly, He was an ati varnasrami, beyond castes and stages of life.
So the rules of sannyasa did not apply to Him.

Arunachala Siva.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on May 03, 2015, 11:47:27 AM
thank you mr subramaniam for providing the  clarification.
i have never found so far reading of these in bhagavan's any books. that's the cause for knowing this.
thank you again
om namo bhagavathe sri ramanaya 
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on May 04, 2015, 01:25:41 PM
Sri Ramana Maharshi rarely asked visitors if they practiced self-enquiry or Japa but He did ask them Have had your food? Remembering this on Sunday May 3rd over five thousand people were served hot food between 9:15 AM and 12 PM at the entrance to the ashram. The kitchen workers started cooking as early as 1:30 AM on Sunday and prepared huge amounts of food in the relatively small cooking facility of the ashram. Huge cauldrons filled with tasty Pongal, Sambar rice, Curd rice, Vegetable rice, Vangi bhaat etc were transported by tricycle to an area near ashram gate and hot food was served to visitors without any restriction. The number of devotees walking around the Arunachala Hill was very great because of Chitra Pournima(Full moon during when the star Chitra is ascendant).

Another feeding of about five hundred people was done in the evening. Boliye(Let us say) Bhagavan Sri Ramana Mahahrshi ki Jai Devotees ki Jai and ashram cooks ki jai
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on May 16, 2015, 12:39:57 PM
When I arrived at the abode of Maharshi, called Ramanashram and jumped out from the two wheeled cart just in front of the temple, I was taken straight into the presence of the Sage.

He was sitting in a large hall, near one of its walls. I was led to within three or four yards of Maharshi. The Saint lifted up his head, looked at me, and made a gesture with his hand as if inviting me to come a little nearer. I was struck by the softness and serenity of this movement, so simple and dignified that I immediately felt I was facing a great man. His attitude was so natural that the newcomer did not feel any wonder or shyness. All his critical faculty of thought and his curiosity dropped away. The image of the Sage was in this very first moment vividly engraved on my mind, without any qualifications, like a picture cast on a sensitive photo plate. But as nothing can be conveyed without words, I will try to describe his appearance.

Maharshi, as I saw him, was a thin, white haired, very gracious old man; his skin had the colour of old ivory; his movements were easy, calm and soft; his countenance breathed a natural state of inner concentration without the slightest effort of will. Or may I say that he had reached that stage when will power no longer needs to be used for overcoming any hindrance, or for achieving any purpose For the simple reason that everything has already been achieved.

I wonder how it is that I have never forgotten even the smallest detail concerning Maharshi; it can be evoked in my brain like a picture on a hidden sensitive plate of whose very existence I was unaware.

May I say that I understand that Maharshi's life is not concentrated on this our earthly plane; that it extends far beyond our world; that he contemplates a different and real world, a world not subject to storms and changes; that he is a torch of light before the throne of the Most High, shedding its rays all around; that he is like the incense smoke constantly rising towards the blue sky which we see through the temple roof; that his eyes, just now looking at me, seem to convey  no, I am unable to say anything more. I cannot even think.

I only feel a stream of tears upon my face. They are abundant and serene. They flow silently. It is not suffering, regret, or repentance that is their source. I do not know how to name their cause. And through these tears I look at the Master. He knows full well their origin. His serious, almost solemn face, expresses endless understanding and friendship, and glows with inner light which makes it so different from all other human faces. In the light of his profound gaze I suddenly understand the reason and purpose of my tears. Yes, I see at last. The sudden illumination is too strong to allow immediate belief in the truth of the seen. Is this really possible Can it be possible But Maharshi's eyes seem to bring a confirmation of it Mouni Sadhu in In days of great peace.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on June 19, 2015, 04:43:31 PM
 Arunachala by night - Mouni Sadhu.

The outlines of Arunachala peak were clear-cut and sharp against the sky. The lower, massive body of the hill remained invisible, wrapped in the darkness of night. I have never failed to feel the strange magnetic influence of Arunachala even in its visible form. At first I could not rationally explain what relation there could be between Maharshi and the hill, for I knew that the Sage was far beyond all special beliefs, and that he regarded the whole world as an illusion and a play of our physical senses. And yet it was undeniable that even in his books he mentions Arunachala with the highest reverence and love. It is mysterious, at least for those who have not fathomed the symbolism of this strange South Indian Hill. In this quiet night meditation, I decided to use the newly discovered method of perceiving that which is imperceptible to the ordinary mental faculties. This method consists in a preliminary purification of the mind of all thoughts, leaving only the intention of getting into touch from within, as it were, with the desired object of cognition. Afterwards what is translatable into the language of the mind is transmitted to it. In other words, intuition has to provide light from a source which the mind cannot reach. The powerful magnetism of Arunachala makes the whole process easier. As soon as I plunged into meditation, discarding all objects from my sight, I began to see that for which I had been searching.

First of all became clear the well-known occult law that Everything has its corresponding form of manifestation in different worlds. Hence that which is the spiritual essence of Arunachala has its reflection on the physical plane. To me, as to many others, Arunachala was, and is, a sign-post on the path. Maharshi also said: Arunachala destroys attachment to worldly things, that is, to the objects of physical illusion. This I proved later, when I found that every time Arunachala was mentioned or described by those who regarded it as their beacon, I felt this worldly illusion disappearing from my thoughts, falling into the shadows of unreality, which is their true source.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on June 30, 2015, 06:35:08 PM
 From Mouni Sadhu's correspondence.

What kind of attitude is proper in the presence of the Master? Nothing is more helpful in the presence of a great being than stillness of mind. It opens the door of our heart and enables the Master to come in. The proximity of Maharshi makes this effort of stilling the mind infinitely easier than it would be elsewhere. Often, even when people pray according to their own faiths, the result can ultimately be the same. In the presence of Bhagavan Maharshi we are able to find intuitively by ourselves the proper attitude.

The student of Self‑knowledge begins to understand that his personality is a focus or fulcrum, as it were, through which flows and shines the light of life that is God. But he himself is not this focus. He must take care to maintain it in perfect purity, to enable the maximum of light to shine through it. But this should be his only care and nothing more. Herein lies the mystery of the disappearance of the ego as the result of Self‑realization. It brings true freedom. When the focus has fulfilled its task it is discarded with neither pain nor regret. But this happens only when it has become a lived reality and not a theory. And that is the highest initiation.
Maharshi highly appreciates Sri Sankaracharya's Viveka Chudamani or The Crest Jewel of Wisdom. Many Hindus regard the Sage of Arunachala to be a reincarnation of the author of this treatise, which reaches the highest summit of occult philosophic conception. In any event one thing is true: only a balanced and one‑pointed mind leads to the realm of truth  to samadhi. Interruptions in the state of samadhi prove that the mind is not completely subdued; it comes back to activity and evades the still imperfect control.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on September 12, 2015, 11:42:28 PM

Muruganar day

Many devotees came from far and near to sing Muruganar's songs on Muruganar?s day. We recited 51 titles from Ramana Sannathi Murai chosen for their likeness to Tiruvachakam titles. Of Course Aksharamanamalai was chanted to invoke the Master?s presence while Vedas were chanted inside the shrine during worship of the Samadhi. Born in 1895, Sri C. K. Subrahmanyam grew up in an atmosphere of Tamil learning and became in due course a teacher of Tamil in a High School. His first collection of poems, Swatantra-Gitam, owed much to his ardent admiration of Gandhiji and, like the early work of his elder contemporary, Subrahmanya Bharati, formed a distinct contribution to the national movement. But when he came to Bhagavan and fell under his spell, he renounced all other interests, completely effaced his personality and turned into "a shadow of Bhagavan." And he has lived ever since in a state of stark simplicity, utterly poor and obscure.

In thus losing the world to find Bhagavan, he has found a joy to utter and a voice to utter it which have given him a high and assured place among the immortal singer saints of Tamil Nadu. This sudden and complete change in the poems and in the manner of his utterance, the marvelously sustained and infinitely varied beauty of the enormous bulk of his verse on a single theme, constitutes an undoubted " miracle " wrought by Bhagavan, permanently there for all eyes to behold.

Muruganar was content with composing his poems and having them read by Bhagavan. For him there was no ?wider public" to whose notice they should be brought. Thus it fell to an admirer, Sri Ramana Padananda, to arrange for the printing and publication of six volumes of Muruganar's poems. In practising the Presence of Bhagavan under the terms of Muruganar's images and rhythms, one enters into intensely felt relations with the Guru who figures in various roles of Siva or Subrahmanya, as father. mother or lover, as master, king or commander, as beggar or betrayer. Each of the 850 stanzas in Guru-Vachaka-Kovai1 is a little golden casket wrought with loving care to enshrine and set off a gem fallen from the Master's lips. The stream of Muruganar's inspiration has continued running fresh and strong even after the passing of Bhagavan. If it has lost some of the old briskness and brightness, it has acquired a new serenity. Leaving aside Muruganar's own copious outpourings, his success in evoking so much of the little that Bhagavan himself wrote is something to be grateful for. It is to Muruganar that we owe the existence and poetic pattern of Upadesa Saram, (' Instruction in Thirty Verses ') the living quintessence of advaitic thought and a brief but sufficient summary of Bhagavan's own practical guidance. Muruganar composed a long narrative poem telling how the rishis who trusted too much to their rituals were taught a lesson. At the crucial moment, when Siva had to deliver His teaching, Muruganar left it to Bhagavan to provide the ipsissima verba of divine revelation.

Many of the Forty Verses on Reality owe their final form and the exposition its logical arrangement to Muruganar's efforts. And this game of collaboration reached its climax in the composition of Atma Vidya, wrhich fills a musical mould of Gopalakrishna Bharati with a new, profound meaning. Beginning "Easy is Self-knowledge," it raises only to reject the image of " the berry in the palm of one's hand " ; so evident is this perception that it needs neither perceiver nor thing perceived. Having proceeded thus far, Muruganar had to leave off where the poet qua poet could only say or imply, "The rest is silence ". But Bhagavan, speaking with an authority higher than any poet's, continued the argument, explained the sadhana and the grace and ended with a hint that Annamalai, the Inner Eye, the One Alone, is the author.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 01, 2015, 11:42:30 PM
 Facing the challenges of life , the Ramana Way.


Sometimes difficult situations descend on us suddenly. Relationships go sour, economic hardships arise, health problems threaten our loved ones or we experience all-round failure in our attempts. The feeling of frustration and disappointment increases when we feel that the problem is caused by something we actually did or by something that we should have done but didn't do. Sri Ramana Maharshi has compassionately taught us the way to deal with such situations. Here we recount the Master's teaching on this subject and see how it grants spiritual peace and freedom from suffering. A devotee once asked Ramana Maharshi about the existence of sorrow and evil in creation.

M.: God's will!
D.: Why does God will it so?
M.: It is inscrutable. No motive can be attributed to that Power - no desire, no end to achieve can be asserted of that one Infinite, All-wise and All-powerful Being. God is untouched by activities, which take place in His presence; compare the sun and the world activities. There is no meaning in attributing responsibility and motive to the One before it becomes many.

If so, what should a person facing challenges in his life, do to overcome his troubles? Sri Ramana Maharshi teaches that by accepting one's own free-will as an instrument of the Divine Will one can eventually obtain peace of mind. In Talks He says Acceptance of God's will for the prescribed course of events is a great solution of the free-will problem. He elaborates this further saying If the mind is restless on account of a sense of the imperfect and unsatisfactory character of what befalls us or what is committed or omitted by us, then it is wise to drop the sense of responsibility and free-will by regarding ourselves as the ordained instruments of the All-wise and All-powerful, to do and suffer as He pleases. He then carries all the burdens and gives us peace.

In the reminiscences of Ramana Maharshi by G V Subbaramayya we read On the 17th of June, Sri R. Narayana Iyer told Sri Bhagavan of his vain efforts at matrimonial alliance for his eldest daughter and said that he would make no further attempts unless he received a specific direction from Sri Bhagavan. Just at that moment the mail brought a journal named Progress. Sri Bhagavan read out its motto You can succeed if you know the power that is in you, and said that here was the reply to Narayana Iyer. The latter, regarding it as a clear token of Sri Bhagavan's Grace, took up at once a new proposal and succeeded this time. In a letter dated July 12, 1940 Narayana Iyer writes Till Thursday evening I did not know that the marriage was to be settled and to take place on the Sunday following. No preparation whatever was made . . . What could I do? Just a day's interval and nothing done. I appealed to Sri Bhagavan and wrote a letter of saranagati (surrender) with tears trickling from my eyes. From that very moment the burden was lifted. I go to Tiruvannamalai only to find that I had no work. Buildings, cooks, vessels, servants, provisions, in fact every detail had been arranged and everything went off very well. It is wonderful. The nerve-racking suspense, frantic efforts at the last moment, and the frenzied wanderings look like a dream now, and I only chant and chant like a mantra the words, You will succeed if you know the Power that is in you.?

Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 14, 2015, 11:33:24 AM
Ramana Maharshi After the death experience, one of the new features related to the visit of Meenakshi Temple in Madurai. After awakening I would go almost every evening to the temple. I would go alone and stand before Meenakshi for long periods. I would feel waves of emotion overcoming me. This was God?s (Isvara?s) play with the individual spirit. I would stand before Isvara, the Controller of the universe and the destinies of all, the Omniscient and Omnipresent, and occasionally pray for the descent of his grace upon me so that my devotion might increase and become perpetual like that of the sixty-three saints.?

Selection from Devi Mahatmyam or Durga Saptasati

A vanquished king and a merchant facing severe financial losses retire to a forest hermitage where they question a sage Medha as follows:
Question: My mind is afflicted with grief. Though I have lost the kingdom, I have an attachment to my former kingdom. Though I know the actuality how is this sense of ?mine afflicting me like an ignorant man, O best of sages And this merchant has been disowned by his children, wife and servants, and forsaken by his own people; still he is inordinately affectionate towards them. Thus both he and I, drawn by attachment towards objects whose defects we do know, are exceedingly unhappy. How is it that even the knowledgeable are deluded??

Answer:Bhagavati, the Mahamaya entangles humans into delusion forcibly drawing the minds of even the wise. She creates this entire universe, both moving and unmoving. It is She who, when propitious, grants the best to humans and shows the way for their final liberation. She is the supreme knowledge, the cause of final liberation, and eternal; She is the cause of the bondage of transmigration and the sovereign over all lords?.
Question: Venerable sir, who is that Devi whom you call Mahamaya How did she come into being, and what is her sphere of action, O sage? What constitutes her nature? What is her form Wherefrom did she originate? All that I wish to hear from you, O you supreme among the knowers of Brahman.?

Answer: That Goddess is eternal, without beginning. The entire universe is her Form. By Her all this is pervaded. Nevertheless She incarnates in manifold ways; hear it from me. Though She is eternal, She is said to be born in the world, whenever She manifests herself in order to achieve the purposes of the devas.

from the fb Ramana Maharishi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on October 16, 2015, 11:24:40 AM
Human mind is so construed that it cant see the Divine Mother except in a Royal dress even if She is depicted as doing Tapas(austerity). Today the theme is Mother doing tapas (or austerity) but nevertheless Mother is decorated in the fashion of the Queen Empress of the Universe. Even during Bhagavan's time this was so as Smt Nagamma writes in the Letters from Sri Ramanasramam: You have seen the decorations made in the shrine of Mathrubhuteswara on the first day of Navarathri festival last year. There was a different type of decoration every day during those nine days, and on one of the days, in accordance with the Puranic story that Amba went out to do Tapas as she could not bear the separation from Siva the idol of Amba was decorated suitably and was put in the shade of a tree. After the night meal was over that day, Bhagavan was taken to that place and was shown that idol. Next morning, Bhagavan said, Yesterday's ornamentation was intended to show that Amba was doing Tapas. Unable to bear the separation, she goes out to do Tapas (penance) here. Parvathi is depicted as sitting in a stylish pose under a tree to do Tapas, wearing a silk saree, gold jewels and flower garlands. What our people do is always like this. Tapas means meditation connected with the practice of self-denial or bodily mortification, does it not Amba is reported to have closed the eyes of Siva with both her hands for fun and to expiate that sin, Parameswara asked her to perform penance, and so she left her husband, went to a lonely place, and in self-mortification, forgot about her body, became weak and with great austerity, performed Tapas. See the way Amba is decorated to depict that story. She is dressed like a Maharani with diamonds and emeralds and gold ornaments and wearing a silk saree and flower garlands!

Devi Mahatmyam

According to Devi Mahatmyam even good and great people are opposed by evil or demonic forces. Yesterday we saw Maha Vishnu opposed by the demons Madhu and Kaitabha. Similarly Indra the god of Devas is overrun by the demon Mahishasura. Good people when in trouble seek divine protection from the Divine Mother and Her intervention tilts the balance of power leading to the victory of good over evil. Devi Mahatmyam says that the sum-total of divine energy of Brahma, Vishnu and Siva manifested in a fierce form and slayed the demon Mahishasura thus restoring Indra to his position. May the grace of the Divine Mother ever protect us from the hold of Mahishasura in the form of inauspicious thoughts.


from the fb Ramana Maharishi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on November 20, 2015, 07:41:46 PM
Rishabha or Bull is the vehicle of the Lord. Sages tell us that it stands for Dharma or righteousness meaning only righteous devotee will be chosen by the Lord to carry Him or His message. Why was Bull chosen over other vehicles In part due to its tenacity which will crush under the weight of the load but will not take a single step backwards. The images for the evening procession will be seen tomorrow. Please see images of Special Veda Parayana at the ashram and Sri Vidya Havan at Rajarajeswari temple near Sankara Mutt.

Unique One, giver of goodness, Lord Sonagiri! He whose beautiful form is seated upon the bull! When will you grant me the boon of eternal life, At what time shall I, in joy, obtain it This much tell to me, your solitary devotee, this very day! Guhai Namasivayar

The power of the name Arunachala was once directly confirmed by Sri Bhagavan. In 1948 a certain devotee came to him from Bombay, and with him he brought a notebook in which he had written the name 'Arunachala Siva' many thousands of times. On the last page of this notebook the devotee wrote a prayer to the following effect, 'O Bhagavan, in the life of Sarada Devi [the wife of Sri Ramakrishna] it is written that she has said that if even an animal dies in Kasi it will attain liberation. Therefore, graciously bestow upon be the boon of death in Kasi.' and gave the notebook to Sri Bhagavan.
Bhagavan looked through the notebook and when he came to the last page he read out loud the devotee's prayer: at once he expressed the greatest surprise and exclaimed, 'Smaranat Arunachalam!'

The words 'Smaranat Arunachalam' mean 'by remembering Arunachala', and they occur in the very same Sanskrit verse that says that by dying in Kasi one will attain liberation. Bhagavan then turned to the revolving bookcase by his side and took out a book,probably the Arunachala Mahatmyam. Opening it as if at random, he read out a sentence in Tamil that said, 'One ''Arunachala'' is equal power to three crore ''Om Nama Sivaya'''.

I have seen a wonder, a magnetic hill that forcibly attracts the soul. Arresting the activities of the soul who thinks of it even once, drawing it to face itself, the One, making it thus motionless like itself, it feeds upon that sweet [pure and ripened] soul. What a wonder is this! O souls, be saved by thinking of this great Arunagiri, which shines in the mind as the destroyer of the soul [the ego]. Sri Ramna Maharshi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 08, 2016, 06:47:08 PM
#RMCL

Mahodaya Punakala Ayyankulam pond dipping event turned tragic claiming at least four lives. Ashram reports with great sadness the loss of the life of one its most valuable priest volunteer Prof. Manikandan of SKP Engineering college, Tiruvannamalai. The attached Navaratri decorations and Sri Vidya havan worship speak for themselves for the greatness of this great Devi Upasaka.
Between 6:30 AM and 6:40 AM there was some commotion as devotees were standing in the steps of the Ayyankulam tank. Some twenty people slipped and fell in the Pond. Many of them were rescued but some were caught in the sludge below the water and lost their lives. We pray to Sri Ramana Maharshi to grant peace to his relatives and friends in this difficult time.
Aksharamana malai verse 24.
கொடியிட்டு அடியரைக் கொல் உனைக் கட்டிக் கொண்டு எஙன் வாழ்வேன் அருணாசலா!,
Blazoned as the slayer of Thy votaries, how can I survive who have embraced Thee, O Arunachala?
from the fb Ramana Maharishi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Sadhak on February 09, 2016, 12:42:45 AM
Very tragic. The alangarams (decorations) for the last Navarathri was wonderful. Due to the heavy rains all the ponds have more water this year. The police and temple authorities predictably blame each other. It was a stampede. The police version is that the temple authorities did not request assistance for this event.

Heartfelt condolences to the families.



Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on February 09, 2016, 11:01:06 AM
Devotees pay tearful homage to Sri Manikandan

"The hilly bump on the shoulder of Sri Manikandan bears testimony to his giving his shoulders to Carry the utsava murthy of the Lord".
"Praying for Manikandan and his dear ones in Kashi. What a loss for all of us. Not only a great Sri Vidya Upasaka, but also an extraordinary devotee of Sri Arunacheshwara and Ambal".
"There is no accident in Arunachala. Everything here happens by the "Will of Lord Siva". The work for doing which Lord Siva sent "Sri Manikandan" is over and he was taken back".
"The writer of this post met Sri Manikandan inside Arundachala temple near the utsava murty of Annamalaiyar on the fateful day at 4:30AM. Upon hearing that the writer was in the middle of Pradkashinam "Sri Manikanadan" remarked "This is the most auspicious time for Giri-Pradakshinam."
"Sri Manikandan" had given his body-speech and mind to the cheerful service of Lord Arunachala."
"What a sobering reminder that we are not the body and we have to be ready to leave the body at a moment's notice"
"Annamalai! As soon as Thou didst claim me, my body and soul were Thine. Can I then lack anything?. I can think only of Thee (hereafter), not of merit and demerit, O my Life. Do as Thou wilt, then, my Beloved, but grant me only ever increasing love for Thy (dear) Feet!" Sri Ramana Maharshi in Navamanimalai
"Lord who art Consciousness Itself, beyond differences of male, female and neuter! Do not think of letting me pine away in despair as one unmindful of Thee. Is it not unbecoming Thy Grace that I should be reduced to dust mistaking the vile body for the Self? Do not therefore deceive me in any manner but turn Thy full and refreshing glance upon me. Abide in my heart" Sri Ramana Maharshi in Navamanimalai
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 15, 2016, 05:06:39 PM
Sri Vidhya Havan 2016
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 19, 2016, 10:30:24 PM
Ashram conducted a very special worship of the Divine Mother on Friday, March 18th. This is an annual worship performed by Sri Vidya initiates numbering about thirty who are invited to the ashram. The worship starts around 7 AM in the morning and concludes around 4 PM in the evening. The regular Sri Chakra puja done on Fridays is performed on the following morning. The worship includes Navavarana Puja, grand Homam, Sumangali Puja, Kanya Puja and the Abhisekham of the Divine Mother of Para Bhattarika Lalita Parameswari. The worship is known as Sri Vidya Havan.
Worship of the Supreme Being as Goddess, Sri Vidya, has a very holy tradition traced to the Vedas. There are two principal divisions, known as Hadi Vidya and Kadi Vidya. The former was practised by Indra, Chandra, Manu, Kubera, etc.; it is the simpler of the two and also more common. The other was practised by Lopamudra and approved of the wise.

Sri Ramana Maharshi has left us the legacy of the worship of the Divine Mother by consecrating a Sri Chakra and instituting regular worships of the Meru. The philosophy and worship of the Divine Mother is extolled in books like Sri Tripura Rahasya which was highly regarded by Sri Ramana Maharshi. Sri Tripura Rahasya, otherwise Haritayana Samhita, begins with Salutations to Aum and ends with Tripura is only Hrim. Aum is well known as the sacred syllable signifying the Highest Being in the abstract, so also Hrim is the sacred symbol of the same as the Goddess. The contents of the book are thus enclosed by these two symbols - the most sacred in the Vedas and the work is equally sanctified. Because of the high regard shown by Ramana Maharshi ashram has brought out an English translation of the original in Sanskrit.

The origin of Tripura Rahasya(the mystery of the tri-cities) is interesting. Haritayana was worshipping Sri Minakshi in the temple at Madurai in South India. Narada appeared to him and said that he had come from Brahmaloka in order to see what Haritayana was going to present to the world in the form of an Itihasa containing the Supreme Spiritual Truth. Haritayana was bewildered and asked how the Saint expected it of him. Narada said: "There was an assembly of saints in Brahmaloka. Markandeya asked Brahma about the Sacred Truth. Brahma said that it would be brought out by you in the form of a holy book. So I came to ask you about it." Haritayana was at a loss and pleaded inability to reproduce the Sacred Truth learned from Parasurama. Narada then meditated on Brahma who appeared before them and asked what the matter was. When Narada put the whole matter before him, he turned to Haritayana and blessed him, endowing him with the ability to produce the book at the rate of four chapters a day. He also referred to Haritayana's past and attributed his present inability to remember what he learnt to the casual and undisciplined utterance of the sacred syllable in his past incarnation. Brahma further enjoined Narada to be the first to read Haritayana's work when it should be completed.

from the fb Ramana Maharishi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on March 19, 2016, 10:37:06 PM
Sri Vidhya Homam
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on April 30, 2016, 02:57:20 PM
66rh Aradhana of Ramana Bhagavan
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on April 30, 2016, 02:59:14 PM
66th Aradhana of Bhagavan Ramana
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Subramanian.R on May 04, 2016, 01:02:43 PM
I saw the Maha Nirvana day celebrations in the computer. It was quite nice. Various abhishekams, and
alankaram and arti were seen by me. 

Arunachala Siva.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on July 28, 2016, 11:56:51 PM
Tamil Parayana
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Subramanian.R on August 01, 2016, 11:17:17 AM
Today is the Punarvasu day of the Tamizh month of Ashada.  Punarvasu is the birth star of Sri
Bhagavan.  Every Punarvasu star day, there will be good abhikshekam, alankaram, and arti
for Sri Ramaneswara Mahalingm.

There will be such celebrations today, followed by good lunch with sweets.  The crowds will be
quite large.



Muruganar has composed a poem called Punarvasu VaNNam (the glory of punarvasu) and this can be seen in Sri Ramana Sannidhi Murai.

I shall give in this context, some translations from Guru Vachaka Kovai of Muruganar.

Destruction of Mind:

913. Unsteady and wavering minds find only
        Failure and frustration always.

914. The restless mind moves with a speed
        That shames the God of Wind . To starve it,
        So that it, like a cripple, stays
        Totally immobile is to attain
        Actual Immortality.

915. It is true wisdom to pluck out
        Before they grow too strong the weeds
        Of lust and anger and greed, and keep
        The mind serene and self contained
        Like a vast ocean deep and calm
        Untroubled by a single ripple
        Raised by any wind.

918.  He who has vanquished thought, he only
         Sits like an emperor on the neck
         Of the  majestic elephant, Jnana,
         Know for certain that the mind's
         Movements alone give rise to birth
         And every cruel pain and sorrow.

920.   Even as the ego does not die
          Unless the Self's  glance falls on it,
          The painful dream of this phenomenal
          World will never disappear
           Unless the mind meets glorious death.

Arunachala Siva.   
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Sadhak on August 01, 2016, 05:17:28 PM
"Today is the Punarvasu day of the Tamizh month of Ashada.  Punarvasu is the birth star of Sri
Bhagavan.  Every Punarvasu star day, there will be good abhikshekam, alankaram, and arti
for Sri Ramaneswara Mahalingm."

Indeed. Not only the maha lingam but the mothers shrine and Nataraja had good alankarams. Punarvasu vanam song was recited.


"There will be such celebrations today, followed by good lunch with sweets. "

Yes. The prasadam and the lunch that followed were excellent.


 "The crowds will be quite large."

Surprisingly did not seem very large by Punarvasu standards.


Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on August 26, 2016, 02:46:48 AM
Ashram offered solemn worship to Lord Krishna on the sacred occasion of Janmashtami or the birth of Lord Krishna. As is well known Bhagavan reached Arunachala on the day after Janamashtami. Srimati Nagamma describes a scene in Sri Ramansram as follows;I was reminded of Lord Krishna in Repalle when I saw the grand spectacle of Bhagavan standing in the midst of the cows in the Gosala. Not only this, in Brahma Vaivartha Purana it is stated that Krishna is the Paramatma, the Lord of the cow world, and that Radha is Prakriti. The theory in that Purana is that Radha and Madhava are Prakriti and Purusha-the inseparable pair. Standing with his body bent slightly to the left, and with his left hand on Lakshmi, and with the walking stick in his right hand, looking as if it was a flute, with a sparkling smile on the face like the foam on the waves of the ocean of ananda, with a compassionate look towards the group of devotees that had gathered along with the herd of cows, Sri Ramana, the embodiment of grace, it is no surprise if one were reminded of Lord Krishna Himself standing with crossed legs, resting on his toes and playing exquisitely on the flute. If that Krishna is Ramana, what are we to say of our Lakshmi who appears to have been completely oblivious of this world with her ears hanging down, with her eyes closed and enjoying transcendental bliss caused by the touch of Bhagavan's hands on her body Shall I say that she is the embodiment of Prakriti in the shape of Radha? Otherwise, how could she understand human language.

Sri Ramana Maharshi has several times explained the inner significance of Srimad Bhagavad Gita. Arjuna had to do the fighting. So Krishna said, Place all the burden on Me, do your duty; you are merely an instrument. I will see to everything. Nothing will bother you. But then, before one surrenders to God, one should know who it is that surrenders. Unless all thoughts are given up there cant be surrender. Further Bhagavan says:  What exactly did Lord Krishna tell Arjuna He told him, the deed will get done according to the doing. I am the doer watching the whole thing from above. Why do you worry? It is your body which does the killing of your relatives. Are you the body? No! Why then this bondage for you? Renounce the idea, he said. This means that he asks Arjuna to do the thing but to give up the feeling that it is he that is doing it. That is personal effort. The feeling that one is, or is not, the body, comes from one's own ignorance. One only has to give up that feeling; that which one has, one must oneself reject. Who else can do it? If by personal effort that bondage is removed, action, under the orders of the doer, Iswara, goes on of its own accord. Every one has his work allotted to him and he will do it automatically. Why should one worry? Arjuna, when he felt that it was not proper to kill his relatives, was only told to give up the feeling that he was the doer, yet it was Arjuna himself who ultimately fought. By listening to the Gita, he lost the feeling of being the doer and the doubt he had had was no longer there. The work had to be done with that particular body, and it was done.

from the fb Ramana Maharishi
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Sadhak on August 26, 2016, 08:20:24 AM
 The ashram was crowded for Janmashtami. The Narayana Seva seemed to go on for an hour and the line was the longest I have seen for some time outside of Deepam day. But it was well managed.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on September 04, 2016, 03:59:31 PM
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Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 14, 2017, 12:34:23 AM
from the newsletters Newyork Ashramam Jan 2017

The Old Hall Rises in the New World

When Srimati Kalyanamathy Rathinasamy said that she wanted to bring Sri Bhagavan to Tampa, we understood that the Bhagavan she was intending to bring was already residing within her own heart. Yet, her aspiration was to have him manifest physically in the best way she saw possible by replicating the very building in which Sri Bhagavan resided for over 20 years  the blessed space now known as The Old Hall of Sri Ramanasramam.

THE devotees of the Tampa Sri Ramana Satsang and those of Arunachala Ashrama, New York offered to assist her so as to make her dream come true. Her husband, Dr. Palani Rathinasamy, shared her aspiration and spared no effort to realize her vision, supporting and encouraging her at every step. Sri Ramanasramam provided unreserved assistance with their advice, photos and measurements of all the elements that make up the Old Hall. Sri V. S. Mani even hand-carried to the USA a piece of floor stone from the original Old Hall that was recovered from the 1986 reconstruction of the original Old Hall. This stone was embedded into the new hall's floor near Bhagavan's couch so all devotees who prostrate before Him in Tampa might place their head on stone that Bhagavan once consecrated with his holy feet.
 Smt. Mathy & Dr. Rathinasamy
Smt. Mathy & Dr. Rathinasamy

The President of Sri Ramanasramam graciously wrote:
Smt. Mathy and Dr. Rathinasamy, Thank you for inviting us to the Inauguration function of The Old Hall Replica today in Tampa, Thursday, the 29th December 2016. It gives us immense joy to know that the replica hall has come out very well and almost resembles the Old Hall here, one of the most sacred places to Sri Bhagavan's devotees. Our congratulations to you and your team on behalf of the Ashram. It shows the dedication, effort and hard work of the entire team.
We wish the function all success. We are certain that the replica hall will continue to be a source of the guiding presence and inspiration of our Master Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi.
We seek His Blessings and Grace on the entire team of devotees.
Yours in Bhagavan,

President, V. S. Ramanan
James Hartel of New York produced designs for the contractor and oversaw all the woodwork construction; he traveled to Tampa several times to consult with the contractor and even worked on the construction himself.
When Suri Nagamma encountered many obstacles in the writing of her Letters from Sri Ramanasramam, she was told by a wise friend, śrēyāṁsi bahu vighnāni (Good works encounter several obstacles). And so it was with Mathy's dream of replicating the Old Hall in Tampa.
 new 'Old Hall' inside view
click to see a larger image

Every step on her path met with countless road blocks and delays. But Mathy and Dr. Rathinasami calmly weathered them all with the faith that Bhagavan would somehow get the work done, not on their timetable, but on His. And done it was, in a remarkable fashion.
Right up to the night prior to the griha pravesham and inauguration, January 29th, work was in full swing. The following morning, when the 80 devotees from the Sri Ramana Jayanti Retreat in Tampa arrived, all were spellbound by the likeness to the blessed Old Hall sanctified by the presence of Sri Ramana and most particularly by the palpable presence of Bhagavan which they now experienced. It felt as if the Master had chosen to reside in His new abode in Tampa for the purpose of making our minds subside. More than one person commented that the moment they walked into the Old Hall they became totally disoriented, that their minds blanked out, their body numbed, and that they remained in total peace. Coming back to themselves they realized that, in reality, they had not been 'disoriented' but, rather, they had become reoriented to their true Nature. The state that they had previously experienced was now understood by them to be the disoriented one. Sri Bhagavan's presence was felt intensely by so many on that first day as the Ganesha Puja and homa were performed. This was followed by the chanting of Aksharamanamalai and other works.

To the gathering in the new Old Hall that morning Mathy spoke a few quiet words of welcome to the devotees and expressed her heartfelt gratitude to Bhagavan for fulfilling her humble desire to bring His presence to Tampa. Dr. Venkat Ramanan, President V. S. Ramanan's son, welcomed the devotees and expressed his gratitude to the Tampa satsang, Mathy and Dr. Rathinasamy. Dennis Hartel of Arunachala Ashrama also offered a few words of recognition to those who worked so hard to produce this living monument that will serve to transmit Sri Bhagavan's grace to seekers here in North America.
 new 'Old Hall' outside view
click to see a larger image

Incidentally, a model of a small white cow was used symbolically to enter the hall first, and the image of that cow reminded devotees of Bhagavan's cow Lakshmi who would brazenly enter through the south door of the Old Hall unmindful of all the devotees sitting before her as she marched straight to her Master's sofa.

The following Saturday morning, December 31st, all the retreat attendees returned to the the Old Hall and resounded it with the singing of Aksharamanamalai, Ramana Sadguru and other hymns in praise of Bhagavan and Arunachala. These were interspersed with graphic readings of incidents that had occurred in the Old Hall during Bhagavan's lifetime. The teachings and scenes described gripped the devotees as if they were actually happening before their very eyes, so much was the Divine Presence felt during those few hours.
To those who have never visited Sri Ramanasramam, or to those who may not, for any reason, be able to do so in the future, and to all devotees of Sri Ramana old and new, we unreservedly recommend a visit to this Old Hall replica, a most remarkable building from which the grace of the Master is bound to penetrate the hearts of sincere seekers for years to come.

There are no facilities there for guests but access to North America's Old Hall is easily arranged by calling or emailing Mathy or Dr. Rathinasami 813.685.8843 / mathy at rathinasamy.com.
Also, photos of the new Old Hall and Tampa Retreat programs can be accessed online at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/150835993@N02/albums

 
Sri Ramana Maharshi's 137th Jayanti Retreat in Tampa
THIS year the Jayanti retreat began on the morning of Thursday, 29th December. About 80 devotees traveled to attend from the East Coast to the West, from Canada to South America. It was a joyous gathering of brothers and sisters united under the gracious glance and loving presence of Bhagavan Ramana.
Each morning of the retreat began at 6 AM with Morning Veda Parayana. A half hour of readings by various devotees followed. From 7:15 to 7:45 Sri Lalita Sahasranam Stotram was recited, silent meditation then continued until 8:30. Most evenings we listened to the Evening Veda Parayana at 5 PM followed by meditation till 6:30. After meals and free time, devotees gathered again for chanting and more silent meditation.

In the afternoons there were several presentations. Dr. Venkat Ramanan captivated all with his talk on the significance of the Old Hall. There were video interviews, taped by Rohit Vaidya in November 2016 at Sri Ramanasramam, of President Sri V. S. Ramanan, Sri V. S. Mani and Michael Highberger. The computer room staff at the Ashram did an excellent job of editing the President's interview; the other two interviews were edited by Rohit himself. On another day, Dennis Hartel gave a presentation with numerous photos to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the founding of Arunachala Ashrama, Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi Center in the USA and Canada.
On Thursday morning, devotees traveled to the new Old Hall, about 10 miles from the Franciscan Center. As described in the previous article, during the morning hours all gathered for the inauguration pujas, talks and songs. Lunch was served in the Vishnu Mandir, a few minutes walk down the street. At 3 PM the Jayanti Puja at the Hindu Temple of Florida (next to the Vishnu Temple) began. A beautiful bust photo of Bhagavan, another of Arunachala, a large stone from the Holy Mountain and a Siva Lingam were the objects of worship. Eleven devotees chanted the Rudram and other mantras, an elaborate puja was performed by the head priest and prasadam was distributed. This event on the first day of the retreat invariably serves to open and purify the hearts of the devotees so that the Master's grace may enter their hearts unimpeded in the following days.
Devotees attending the Sri Ramana Jayanti Retreat, Tampa, FL

As our retreat neared its end, the New Year was just arriving. Most of the devotees joined together in the shrine singing Bhagavan's and Muruganar's works and other chants. The children of the retreat stood together in front of us and delightfully told us the life story of Bhagavan. At 11:30 PM Aksharamanamalai began, singing the Arunachala Siva refrain after each verse. While our voices rose in harmony, firecrackers exploded in the sky from across the Hillsborough River and New Year arrived. Bells rang, prasad was distributed and Arunachala Siva, Arunachala Siva, Arunachala Siva, Arunachala!continued till well after midnight. Devotees lingered on, embraced in the glow of the New Year ushered in with the vibrant presence of Bhagavan and the warmth of friendship.

The devotees attending the last four retreats, or any one of them, continue to be amazed by the meticulous, thorough planning and execution of all the inspiring elements of these Ramana Jayanti Retreats in Tampa. Rohit Vaidya and his dedicated team of sevaks cannot be praised adequately for all they have done to create an Ashram-like home for the devotees and seekers traveling to Tampa from all parts of this hemisphere. May Sri Bhagavan himself ever abide in their hearts and in the hearts of all.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on January 14, 2017, 12:38:16 AM
Old Hall Replica, Tampa , Florida
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on January 14, 2017, 06:33:23 AM
from the newsletters Newyork Ashramam Jan 2017

The Old Hall Rises in the New World

When Srimati Kalyanamathy Rathinasamy said that she wanted to bring Sri Bhagavan to Tampa, we understood that the Bhagavan she was intending to bring was already residing within her own heart. Yet, her aspiration was to have him manifest physically in the best way she saw possible by replicating the very building in which Sri Bhagavan resided for over 20 years  the blessed space now known as The Old Hall of Sri Ramanasramam.

THE devotees of the Tampa Sri Ramana Satsang and those of Arunachala Ashrama, New York offered to assist her so as to make her dream come true. Her husband, Dr. Palani Rathinasamy, shared her aspiration and spared no effort to realize her vision, supporting and encouraging her at every step. Sri Ramanasramam provided unreserved assistance with their advice, photos and measurements of all the elements that make up the Old Hall. Sri V. S. Mani even hand-carried to the USA a piece of floor stone from the original Old Hall that was recovered from the 1986 reconstruction of the original Old Hall. This stone was embedded into the new hall's floor near Bhagavan's couch so all devotees who prostrate before Him in Tampa might place their head on stone that Bhagavan once consecrated with his holy feet.
 Smt. Mathy & Dr. Rathinasamy
Smt. Mathy & Dr. Rathinasamy

The President of Sri Ramanasramam graciously wrote:
Smt. Mathy and Dr. Rathinasamy, Thank you for inviting us to the Inauguration function of The Old Hall Replica today in Tampa, Thursday, the 29th December 2016. It gives us immense joy to know that the replica hall has come out very well and almost resembles the Old Hall here, one of the most sacred places to Sri Bhagavan's devotees. Our congratulations to you and your team on behalf of the Ashram. It shows the dedication, effort and hard work of the entire team.
We wish the function all success. We are certain that the replica hall will continue to be a source of the guiding presence and inspiration of our Master Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi.
We seek His Blessings and Grace on the entire team of devotees.
Yours in Bhagavan,

President, V. S. Ramanan
James Hartel of New York produced designs for the contractor and oversaw all the woodwork construction; he traveled to Tampa several times to consult with the contractor and even worked on the construction himself.
When Suri Nagamma encountered many obstacles in the writing of her Letters from Sri Ramanasramam, she was told by a wise friend, śrēyāṁsi bahu vighnāni (Good works encounter several obstacles). And so it was with Mathy's dream of replicating the Old Hall in Tampa.
 new 'Old Hall' inside view
click to see a larger image

Every step on her path met with countless road blocks and delays. But Mathy and Dr. Rathinasami calmly weathered them all with the faith that Bhagavan would somehow get the work done, not on their timetable, but on His. And done it was, in a remarkable fashion.
Right up to the night prior to the griha pravesham and inauguration, January 29th, work was in full swing. The following morning, when the 80 devotees from the Sri Ramana Jayanti Retreat in Tampa arrived, all were spellbound by the likeness to the blessed Old Hall sanctified by the presence of Sri Ramana and most particularly by the palpable presence of Bhagavan which they now experienced. It felt as if the Master had chosen to reside in His new abode in Tampa for the purpose of making our minds subside. More than one person commented that the moment they walked into the Old Hall they became totally disoriented, that their minds blanked out, their body numbed, and that they remained in total peace. Coming back to themselves they realized that, in reality, they had not been 'disoriented' but, rather, they had become reoriented to their true Nature. The state that they had previously experienced was now understood by them to be the disoriented one. Sri Bhagavan's presence was felt intensely by so many on that first day as the Ganesha Puja and homa were performed. This was followed by the chanting of Aksharamanamalai and other works.

To the gathering in the new Old Hall that morning Mathy spoke a few quiet words of welcome to the devotees and expressed her heartfelt gratitude to Bhagavan for fulfilling her humble desire to bring His presence to Tampa. Dr. Venkat Ramanan, President V. S. Ramanan's son, welcomed the devotees and expressed his gratitude to the Tampa satsang, Mathy and Dr. Rathinasamy. Dennis Hartel of Arunachala Ashrama also offered a few words of recognition to those who worked so hard to produce this living monument that will serve to transmit Sri Bhagavan's grace to seekers here in North America.
 new 'Old Hall' outside view
click to see a larger image

Incidentally, a model of a small white cow was used symbolically to enter the hall first, and the image of that cow reminded devotees of Bhagavan's cow Lakshmi who would brazenly enter through the south door of the Old Hall unmindful of all the devotees sitting before her as she marched straight to her Master's sofa.

The following Saturday morning, December 31st, all the retreat attendees returned to the the Old Hall and resounded it with the singing of Aksharamanamalai, Ramana Sadguru and other hymns in praise of Bhagavan and Arunachala. These were interspersed with graphic readings of incidents that had occurred in the Old Hall during Bhagavan's lifetime. The teachings and scenes described gripped the devotees as if they were actually happening before their very eyes, so much was the Divine Presence felt during those few hours.
To those who have never visited Sri Ramanasramam, or to those who may not, for any reason, be able to do so in the future, and to all devotees of Sri Ramana old and new, we unreservedly recommend a visit to this Old Hall replica, a most remarkable building from which the grace of the Master is bound to penetrate the hearts of sincere seekers for years to come.

There are no facilities there for guests but access to North America's Old Hall is easily arranged by calling or emailing Mathy or Dr. Rathinasami 813.685.8843 / mathy at rathinasamy.com.
Also, photos of the new Old Hall and Tampa Retreat programs can be accessed online at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/150835993@N02/albums

 
Sri Ramana Maharshi's 137th Jayanti Retreat in Tampa
THIS year the Jayanti retreat began on the morning of Thursday, 29th December. About 80 devotees traveled to attend from the East Coast to the West, from Canada to South America. It was a joyous gathering of brothers and sisters united under the gracious glance and loving presence of Bhagavan Ramana.
Each morning of the retreat began at 6 AM with Morning Veda Parayana. A half hour of readings by various devotees followed. From 7:15 to 7:45 Sri Lalita Sahasranam Stotram was recited, silent meditation then continued until 8:30. Most evenings we listened to the Evening Veda Parayana at 5 PM followed by meditation till 6:30. After meals and free time, devotees gathered again for chanting and more silent meditation.

In the afternoons there were several presentations. Dr. Venkat Ramanan captivated all with his talk on the significance of the Old Hall. There were video interviews, taped by Rohit Vaidya in November 2016 at Sri Ramanasramam, of President Sri V. S. Ramanan, Sri V. S. Mani and Michael Highberger. The computer room staff at the Ashram did an excellent job of editing the President's interview; the other two interviews were edited by Rohit himself. On another day, Dennis Hartel gave a presentation with numerous photos to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the founding of Arunachala Ashrama, Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi Center in the USA and Canada.
On Thursday morning, devotees traveled to the new Old Hall, about 10 miles from the Franciscan Center. As described in the previous article, during the morning hours all gathered for the inauguration pujas, talks and songs. Lunch was served in the Vishnu Mandir, a few minutes walk down the street. At 3 PM the Jayanti Puja at the Hindu Temple of Florida (next to the Vishnu Temple) began. A beautiful bust photo of Bhagavan, another of Arunachala, a large stone from the Holy Mountain and a Siva Lingam were the objects of worship. Eleven devotees chanted the Rudram and other mantras, an elaborate puja was performed by the head priest and prasadam was distributed. This event on the first day of the retreat invariably serves to open and purify the hearts of the devotees so that the Master's grace may enter their hearts unimpeded in the following days.
Devotees attending the Sri Ramana Jayanti Retreat, Tampa, FL

As our retreat neared its end, the New Year was just arriving. Most of the devotees joined together in the shrine singing Bhagavan's and Muruganar's works and other chants. The children of the retreat stood together in front of us and delightfully told us the life story of Bhagavan. At 11:30 PM Aksharamanamalai began, singing the Arunachala Siva refrain after each verse. While our voices rose in harmony, firecrackers exploded in the sky from across the Hillsborough River and New Year arrived. Bells rang, prasad was distributed and Arunachala Siva, Arunachala Siva, Arunachala Siva, Arunachala!continued till well after midnight. Devotees lingered on, embraced in the glow of the New Year ushered in with the vibrant presence of Bhagavan and the warmth of friendship.

The devotees attending the last four retreats, or any one of them, continue to be amazed by the meticulous, thorough planning and execution of all the inspiring elements of these Ramana Jayanti Retreats in Tampa. Rohit Vaidya and his dedicated team of sevaks cannot be praised adequately for all they have done to create an Ashram-like home for the devotees and seekers traveling to Tampa from all parts of this hemisphere. May Sri Bhagavan himself ever abide in their hearts and in the hearts of all.
                           om namo bhagavathe sri ramanaya
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on April 02, 2017, 02:10:57 PM
Sri Gowrishankar Mama, the father of Sri Sendhil Ganapadigal, the senior teacher of Veda Pathsala, passed away on March 28, 2017 at about 10 am Indian Standard Time. An ardent devotee of Kanchi Maha Periyaval, Sri Seshadri Swamigal and Sri Ramana Maharshi, he spent most of the last two decades of his life in Arunachala. He was on a visit to Srirangam on March 27 and was brought to Ramana Maharshi Hospital in Athyanthal for treatment on March 28. He is well-known as a perennial source of Sat-Sangh inside the premises of Sri Ramana Ashram. Out of respect for his devotion to Mahatmas, we dedicate our regular post on Aksharamanamalai to Sri Gowrishankar Mama. Coincidentally it speaks about life in Arunachala. It was as if Lord Arunachala, called him back from Srirangam to Arunachala before absorbing him in Himself.

95. வாவென்று அகம் புக்கு உ ன் வாழ்வு அருள் அன்றே
என் வாழ்வு இழந்தேன் அருள் அருணாசலா
Vā/ven/draham/bukkun Vāzh/varu/landrē/yen Vāzh/vizhan/dē/narul Arunā/chalā.
Arunachala! On the very day that you bade me come, and, taking me with you, entered the home of the Heart, granting to me a life of unsurpassed bliss in the realisation of the Self, I entirely lost the jiva consciousness of my fragmentary individuality, which is the source of sorrow and delusion. That is the power of your grace.

It is so ordained by the all-powerful Lord that through its very nature (mind) consciousness rushes towards the external objects of sense through the channels of the sense organs at very high speed, like a flood of water when the sluice gates are opened. Therefore unless the Lord takes someone into the Heart and establishes him there through his grace, there is not anyone who possesses the ability to swim against that flood and arrive there relying merely upon the power of his feeble self. This is what is illustrated in the words, ?Saying, ?Come!? The truth of the Lord entering the Heart is clearly stated in v. 97, which begins, ?vīṭuviṭ.? This should be taken into account here. Since Sivam existence is the underlying reality and jiva existence is an appearance superimposed upon it, these two can never exist simultaneously in the mind of anyone. This is the idea conveyed in the words, ? On the very day you gave in grace your life [to me], I lost my own life.? The Heart shines as the supreme empty expanse of consciousness, due to the absence of the principle of egoity (āṇava malam), which takes the form of the ego, in which the conscious and the insentient are combined. In that Heart the ocean of bliss of Brahman, eternal, uninterrupted and unsurpassed, abides free of any object, as the true Self, flourishing as ultimate peace. Since for Bhagavan, who has attained that [higher bliss], there is no loss in losing this [lesser bliss], he says, ?arul? ? ?[That is the majesty of your] grace.?
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: drsundaram on April 02, 2017, 05:54:59 PM
myself and my  famly members had the regular opportunity to listen to him all  the evenings whenever we go to asramam.,utter simplicity  and always speaking and sharing about maha periyavaa  ,bhagavan and  seshadri swamigals was his hall marks. when i read the  news of his demise in elsewhere  i was into a shock.
may all gurus  bestow Their  blessings to the soul of gowrishankar mama
our heartfelt condolences to his son, the veda head of asramam and to the bereaved family   
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on August 13, 2017, 11:36:05 PM
from fb Sri Ramana Maharshi

Arunachala Causes Grace to well up and pour forth as a Stream.

As known to everyone Tiruvannamalai was reeling under the spell of worst drought in recent memory. Indeed, it was sad to see the last drop of water disappear from Sona Tirtham, Pali Tirtham, Simha Tirtham and many of other Tirthams. Many groups of devotees including our ashram organized prayers as enjoined in Scriptures to Lord Varuna, the rain God, for sending us rains. Individual devotees prayed in their own way by doing Giri-Pradakshina, chanting Hanuman Chalisa and other Prayers. However, it appeared that Rain Gods were in no hurry to answer our prayers. There was a general feeling of Why this delay Lord along the lines of Sri Ramana Maharshi asking Lord Arunachala in the prayer for cure of His mother's fever. Ashram was forced to cut down on visitors, spend hard cash to buy water and adopt austere measures to deal with the hardship brought by unexpected climate change.
For the past fortnight or so there have been sporadic showers but still nothing like a heavy downpour. All that changed yesterday. There was such a heavy downpour that water running down the Hill turned into a violent stream breaking the wall between Seshadri Swamigal's ashram and Sri Ramana Ashram and blowing away the gates of Sri Ramanashram close to the Sri Dakshinamurty temple. (Is Nature asking us how dare you build walls between Saints). Not only that the forceful current of water entered the lane adjoining the Mourvi guest house and wreaked havoc blowing away everything on its way including a car, the walls of residential buildings and anything that stood in its way. Some devotees had to stand in knee-deep water in their own homes. Naturally ashram has lifted all the restriction on visitors coming to the ashram. Further all the sacred tanks are brimming with water now. We conclude the mercy of Lord by quoting from ten verses from Arunachala of Ramana Maharshi O Love in the shape of Arunachala! Thou causest Grace to well up in abundance and pour forth as a stream! Jai Arunachala
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Orihh on August 16, 2017, 08:29:19 PM
How omniscient and omnipotent this sacred mountain of ours is!  There truly is nothing greater and nothing other than Arunachala Siva.
Title: Re: Ramana Ashram
Post by: Balaji on September 19, 2017, 01:17:40 PM
from FB Sri Ramana Maharshi  Navarathri Celebrations 2017.
16 h
SALUTATIONS to the Divine Mother, Durga, who exists in all beings in the form of intelligence, mercy, beauty, who is the consort of Lord Shiva, who creates, sustains and destroys the universe.
Devotees observe Navaratri festival up to four times a year the most important one being in the month of Ashwin or September-October. It lasts for nine days in honour of the nine manifestations of Durga. During Navaratri (the word literally means "nine nights") devotees of Durga observe a fast. The beginning of winter is a very important junctions of climatic and solar influence. This period is taken as sacred opportunities for the worship of the Divine Mother. The bodies and minds of people undergo a considerable change on account of the changes in Nature. Under the watchful eyes of the Great Master Sri Ramana Maharshi, Mother Durga will be worshiped during Navaratri. The nine day worship begins on September 21 and concludes on September 30. In the Ramana Ashram, the following are the regular features during the Durga Puja celebrations:
1. A special ritualistic worship of the Mother is conducted daily, which includes the recitation of the Durga Saptashati.
2. Laksharchana for the Mother in the temple, with recitation of the Sri Lalita Sahasranama, is also conducted.
3. An elaborately decorated altar is set up for the evening worship, with the picture of Mother Durga for the first three days, Mother Lakshmi for the next three days, and Mother Saraswathi for the last three days. Many sacred verses from the scriptures are recited and many Kirtans are sung. The Durga Saptashati or the Devi Mahatmya is recited and explained in discourses. The function concludes with the formal floral worship and Arati.
4. Please refer to the attachment for daily program. Everyday devotees can view the evening Aarti live here www.gururama.net