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Messages - Subramanian.R

General Discussion / Re: How to manage profession and spirituality
« on: April 07, 2009, 10:32:45 AM »
Dear Matthew,

I am happy that you have started a thread that can be shared with
everyone.  I have decided to help people who are financially poor
and even if such people cheats me for some small extra money,
I have decided to ignore it.  I am adopting this practice, with flower
vendors, fruit vendors, washermen, auto rickshaw drivers, temple
priests and many such people.  If a rich person, like a grains store merchant or a drug store merchant charge me more, I argue with
him but not fight with him.  These are the people, who have enough
earnings and profits and they need not cheat the purchasers.  I also
help those organizations, whose records are excellent like CRY and

Arunachala Siva.   

General topics / Re: What makes a devotee to choose his deity
« on: April 06, 2009, 05:14:37 PM »
Dear karthikeyan. M

In olden days people from all castes, not only Brahmins, had a Kula
Devata, a family god.  Thereafter, a person, develops interest  in another form of God, through his reading or personal experience.  This is called Ishta Devata, the liked-God.  This practice is common to
all persons in Hinduism.  A king like Raja Raja Chozhan developed great interest in Siva and he built the Big Temple in Thanjavur. Saint
Arunagiri Natha chose Muruga.  This happened after a miracle in his
life, when extreme passion towards women, was chastised by his sister and Muruga appeared before him.  This sort of thing can happen to anyone, regardless of his Kula Devata.  There is one A.S. Raghavan,
a Sri Vaishnavite by birth, now in Chennai, formerly in New Delhi.
He had acute non-stop stomach pain and doctors had lost hope to save him.  Someone suggested to pray to Tiruchendur Muruga.  He
prayed and got relieved.  He started a Tiruppugazh Devotees Group in New Delhi and started having bhajans of Muruga songs.  He also rendered these songs under various ragas and today there are bhajan groups all over India following his musical rendering and having weekly meetings.  This Group is now 50 years old. Mr.A.S. Raghavan has rendered 501 songs so far to music and a book containing only these songs (out of 1350 of Saint Arunagiri Natha) has come out 8 editions and is sold (Hardbound books) for Rs 60!  Audios cassettes and CDs have come out.  Another Sri Vaishnavite scholar by name Mr. Gopala Ratnam, has translated all the 1350 songs in English and has published it through his blog:  I know one
Madhva brahmin by name Vyasa Rao.  He sings all five hundred Tiruppugazh songs melodiously.  His mother tongue is Tulu and his family deity is Krishna.  There are many many such stories on Ishta Devatas.  Things can happen the other way also.  Siva scholars have become staunch Sri Vaishanavites, like Tiru Mazhisai Azhwar. 

Arunachala Siva.       

Lines 43-48:-

My Lord, cur that I was, none of my entreaties went in vain as you
composed at my request many verses, in various metres, according
to classical rules, with such ease, as if you were playing a game. 
Moreover, to fulfill my wish you also composed a song called Atma
Vidya Keerthanam, [The Song of Knowledge].  Praise be to you!

Lines 49-56

The company of rishis [in the Dharuka forest] had become blind, like owls in the daylight, in the presence of the non-dual sun of true knowledge.  With their inner eye of grace obscured, they followed the path shown by the dark ego, [declaring that there was no God other than karma].  It was then that you appeared before them, destroyed
their arrogance, and taught them how to know Reality.  These  instructions that you gave hem then, you later reiterated to us,
your devotees, in the form of a series of explanatory verses [Upadesa Undiyar].  Praise be to you!

Lines 57-62

Not stopping at that, when I further asked you, "Please tell me how the bondage of birth and death may be severed for me, your devotee?"
you gave to us the divine work ULLadu Narpadu that clearly reveals the means by which the bond of the false ego may be severed and Reality shine as the Self.

(Source:  Mountain Path, October-December 2006.  An article by
David Godman and others.)

Arunachala Siva.

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Deepavali
« on: April 06, 2009, 04:25:08 PM »
Bhagavan Ramana offered the following verse on a Deepavali
day, when devotees offered Him, new coupina and towel.  He
conveyed the signficance of Deepavali in the verse.

He who seeks when is Naraka,
Who this hell-like world is ruling,
Mistaking the filthy body
For the Self, and after kills him
By he mean's of Wisdom's Wheel,
is Narayana.  And that day
When he does it, is auspicious,
Called Naraka-Chaturdasi.
Know Deepavali is shining
As the real Self, having sought for
Naraka, the mighty sinner,
That one deteriorated
Taking the Self the mansion
Of this hell-like, guileful body,
Having sought him and then slain him.

(Source: "On Deepavali" from the Poems of Sri Ramana Maharshi,
by Sadhu Arunachala, Major Chadwick. 2nd edition, Sri Ramanasramam, 1967.)

Arunachala Siva.   

Another time in the Jubilee Hall, a Telugu devotee came to Bhagavan
Ramana and complained about  the 'pallavi' of Atma Vidya, where
there is mention of release being very easy.  "Ayye adi sulabam,
atma vidyai...."

"O Bhagavan, how can someone such as I get release? Release may
be easy for one like you but how is it possible for an ordinary person like me?"

Bhagavan Ramana said: "If it is easy for me how can it be difficult for you?

"But, you are Bhagavan, I am just an ordinary man!"

Bhagavan Ramana then said: "If you were to have to carry something too heavy for you to pick up, what would you do?"

"I would seek the help of others," the devotee responded.

"In the same way, seek the help of the Divine or simply surrender
to Him,"  Bhagavan Ramana said.

"That is one thing that is just impossible for me.  Today I will say I have surrendered, but the next day my ego will rise up and dance with abandon."

Bhagavan Ramana replied:  "In that case, do one thing, pray to Him
to help you to surrender.  If you cannot do even that, simply suffer
what comes your way!"

(Source: Reminiscences of Bhagavan, Smt. T.R. Kanakammal.)

Arunachala Siva.     

Upadesa Tiruvahaval, (The Holy Free Verse of Teachings), is a
long poem of Muruganar that runs as a single continuous verse
of just less than 200 lines, in Sri Ramana Sannidhi Murai, [The
Holy Presence of Sri Ramana].  I am not sure, whether the entire
Sri Ramana Sannidhi Murai has been rendered into English. Prof.
K. Swaminathan has rendered most of them in English.  David
Godman and others have done translations of Sri Ramana Puranam and Upadesa Tiruvahaval.

I am giving some lines of the verse of that English rendering:


Nowhere upon this earth, composed on continents that the oceans
surround was there any one possessed  of such dark and deadly
understanding as mine.  I took the first prize, not even knowing
my [real] Self.  My wicked mind was studied full of habits than
those of an ignorant beast, and thus I remained.


A mahatma took birth to nurture and cultivate the dignity of man.
He has earned deep respect by his adherence to the truth and brings
joy to all humanity.  It is as if divine love had manifested in human
form.  He lends strength equally to the motherland [in its search for freedom] and to the individual in his quest for liberation. Such is his greatness.  Those who hear the fair name of Gandhi trun in his direction in transports of great joy, prostrate and worship him.


Under the leadership of this great and worthy soul,  many, many good people suffered indescribable agony for the sake of the motherland. 
Yet, though I was aware of this, in my foolishness, I did not renounce all comforts and volunteer to help their cause.  I did not realize that,
amongst all the many spiritual disciplines that are worthy of practice, truthfulness is that which most benefits the soul.  I spoke contrary to the thoughts I harboured within my mind and thus frittered away my ordained life to no good end.  I showed my love solely with words but never knew the joy of offering love through my deeds.  I hoarded suffering, as if it were wealth, piling it up in the boat (that is the body).  Then as I lay drifting on the sorrowful ocean of bitter birth,
you [Bhagavan] drew me to you and bound me to your golden feet with the rope of divine grace whose nature is to bestow itself entirely without desire or intention.  You watched over me, banishing my slumbers in the differentiated world  brought about by maya.

(Source: Mountain Path, October-December 2006)

Arunachala Siva.       

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Meeting with Muruganar
« on: April 06, 2009, 02:02:35 PM »
Mr. M.V. Sabapathy writes:

On our 1946 trip to see Bhagavan Ramana, we also went to see
Muruganar, who was then living in a hut in Palakottu.  We went
several times and on each occasion, he gave us dates and sugar
candy.  Many years later, in 1960, I went to see him again after
a gap of fourteen years.  At that time, he was staying in T.N.Krishnaswamy's house, which was near the Asramam.

Seeing someone cleaning his dentures, I asked:  "I have come
to see Muruganar Swami.  Where is he?"

The man replied:  "You are looking at him now!"

I felt rather foolish.

As soon as we went inside he began to tell me about my father and mother.  Afterwards, for about half an hour, he explained Bhagavan's
teachings in fluent and flowing English.  During our meeting, I expressed regret that I had not been able to appreciate Bhagavan's
greatness nor understand His teachings since I had only had His
darshan, at a very young age.

Muruganar responded by saying:  "Suppose there is a huge and fiery
flame.  Irrespective of whether one is young or old, whosoever gets
near It, will be affected by the heat.  Proximity to Bhagavan will not leave us without first making us mature.  It will, without fail, reveal the Truth to you at the appropriate time."

The last time, I saw Muruganar was when I went to visit the Asramam along with my brother Ramanachalam.  At that time, Muruganar was staying in the Asramam dispensary.  When we attempted to prostrate
to him, he withdrew his legs, saying, "No need to do namaskaram
to a human."

Then speaking about the greatness of Bhagavan Ramana, he told us:

"Bhagavan and Arunachala are not different.  They are one and the same."

This was his final Upadesa to us.  A month after our meeting he
merged into the feet of Bhagavan Ramana.

(Source: Mountain Path, April-June 2006)

Arunachala Siva.     

Henri Cartung is one of the two admirers of Bhagavan Ramana,
who had earlier read Rene Guenon, the great French philosopher.
The other one is Arthur Osborne. 

Rene Guenon's various books on Hinduism triggered the minds
of Western devotees of Bhagavan Ramana.  [In fact, he must
have his well deserved place along with Immanuel Kant and
Shopenheur, in the history of philosophy.] 

Henri Cartung was given Rene Guenon's book, Introduction to the study of the Hindu doctrines, by Oliver de Carfort in Lyon, France.
In 1947, on a business voyage to India, he met Raja Rao,
[who was ofcourse, a follower of Swami Atmananda] but Raja Rao
asked him to go the Asramam of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi.  He did and the meeting was decisive.  Henri Cartung wrote a number of books and articles on Bhagavan Ramana, for the benefit of French people and he had acknowledged his dual debt to the metaphysician
[Rene Guenon] and the Sage of Arunachala.

On the occasion of the centenary of the birth of Bhagavan Ramana in 1979, he published with Editions du Cerf. a work dedicated to the latter.  This book  "owes much Rene Guenon who represented, for him, though what he had been and all that he had written, a permanent Inner Force."  It echoes a significant debate of the synthesis that some have wished to make between the written teaching of Rene Guenon and the oral teaching of Bhagavan Sri
Ramana Maharshi.

"Arthur that which happened to me several years later --- had heard some Europeans make a distinction between the influence that Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi radiated and initiation
such as Rene Guenon had defined.  Thus he posed to the Maharshi
Himself this question:...... Ramana approved the point of view according to which His Presence like His indications are practical
means of spiritual realization (sadhana)  See Arthur Osborne,
"Le regard qui transperce", Mountain Path, vol. 15, no. 1 of 1978.

Rene Guenon wrote to Henri Cartung in 1949: 

"At the Ashram, like Sri Ramana Maharshi Himself, one feels that
everything is really in order from the traditional point of view,
and there is certainly no more or less doubtful element.  Moreover,
it seems that Bhagavan Ramana on His part heard of Rene Guenon.
According to Carl Hurtung, He called him, 'the great sufi.'

Heni Cartung had last visited Sri Ramanasramam, in 1982, along
with his wife, Sylvie.

(Source: Mountain Path, A Book Excerpt, Rene Guenon:- the Reversal
of the Light: Influence of a metaphysician on the French literary and intellectual life.  Issue of July-Sept. 2007)

Arunachala Siva.   

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Miracles Do Happen
« on: April 06, 2009, 12:49:38 PM »
Once, when Sri Bhagavan was going for His usual stroll on the Hill,
everyone suddenly saw a dove falling at His Feet, half-stunned. When they looked ahead, there was a boy who had hit the bird with a stone
and was now standing trembling.

Sri Bhagavan seeing the boy and turning to the devotees following
Him said:  "If two annas* were available, his hunger would subside."
On hearing this, one of them ran down to the Asramam, took two
annas and rushed back to where Sri Bhagavan was attending to the

At Sri Bhagavan's request the two annas were given to the boy who
was very pleased and left.  The bird was still  stunned.  Then Sri
Bhagavan said:  "If someone bring grapes, and if the grape juice is poured over the head of the bird, it should recover."

At that moment, a devotee, not seeing Sri Bhagavan in the Old Hall, was coming up the Hill searching for Him, with grapes as his offering!  Seeing him with grapes in his hands, Sri Bhagavan exclaimed, "The
grapes have arrived!"

Squeezing the grapes on the bird's head, Sri Bhagavan watched and
waited to reaction.  Slowly the dove started to regain consciousness
and after some time, it flew away!

(Source: Stories about Bhagavan, Sri Sadhu Om. Mountain Path,
July-Sept. 2007)

Arunachala Siva.       

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Miracles Do Happen
« on: April 06, 2009, 12:33:47 PM »
In 1940s, a government officer, who was newly married to a girl
from Tiruvannamalai was working in Vellore.  One day, the lady left
for her home, leaving a message for her husband that she had gone
to her mother's house at Tiruvannamalai and the keys were with a
neighbour.  That evening, when the man came from his office, he
found the house locked.  The neighbours told him that she had gone
to Tiruvannamalai.  He was an orphan and not having love of parents.
He was dependent on his wife's love for him.  He could not bear the separation.

Immeditately, not even changing from his office clothes of trousers
and shoes, he took a bus to Tiruvannamalai and reached his father-in-law's house, but his wife was not there.  She had gone to Sri
Ramanasramam with her mother.  He wanted to see her immediately
and was very upset at not finding her in her parents' house.

He was not aware of who Ramana was and why people should go to
see Him.  He left for Sri Ramansramam to find his wife.  When he
arrived there, not knowing the rule he went inside with shoes on.
He was then unsure as to where to meet her so he stopped for a while to light a cigarette and had a deep drag of smoke to relax him.  The place where he was standing was the path Sri Bhagavan used to take to go to the Goshala.  While he was standing there smoking, he felt a tap on his arm.  When he looked around it was Sri Bhagavan!  Sri
Bhagavan looked at him silently for a while and this man also looked at Bhagavan Ramana.  No one knows what transpired between them.

The man went straight back without meeting his wife. He left his
job and was no more to be found!  The girl coming to know of this was initially sorrow stricken but later consoled herself with thoughts of destiny and the ultimate power of Bhagavan Ramana!

Sri Muruganar uses the word KaN-Nokkam.  The power of Sri
Bhagavan's eyes.  This is the power of Sri Bhagavan's eyes!

(Source: Some Stories by Sri Sadhu Om. Mountain Path, July-
September 2007)

Arunachala Siva.         

One day, two destitute-looking brahmins entered the Hall.  It was
known that they earned their livelihood by the wretched and socially
demeaning occupation of bearing the dead to the cremation grounds.
Both were extremely hungry after having discharged their duties.

Custom demands that anyone entering a house recently visited by
death, should take a bath immediately upon leaving.  This stricture
applies particularly if one steps into the cremation ground, and more
particularly if one is involved in removing and physically transporting
the departed to this place.

A heated argument had ensued between the two men about the propriety of coming to the Asramam to have a meal without having
bathed.  While one of them keenly felt the unseemliness of transgressing this hallowed custom, the other dismissed it at impracticable in ivew of their acute hunger.  Assured of a meal
in the Asramam, which was on their way home, they thought they
might appease their appetite.  They came to the Hall and sat down.
One of them excitedly and abruptly said to Bhagavan:

"Swami!  I have been insisting on the customary bath before we sit
for our meal.  Is that not but just and proper?"  Bhagavan responded in a very soft tone:  "No one can say you are unjust."  The other one
in a greatly agitated voice, burst forth:

"The pangs of hunger are so intense that our entrails are being
devoured.  Is it wrong to eat when hunger is so gnawing?"

Bhagavan Ramana quietly replied:  "Who says it is wrong?  Not at all."

Shocked, looking at one another, they asked in one voice:  "Who
then is wrong?"

Bhagavan answered:

"Don't think you alone are pall-bearers.  All of us are carrying these lifeles corpse.  This body is a veritable corpse.   Everybody carries it saying, 'I', 'I'.  Whoever has the 'I-am-the-body' feeling, is but a pall-bearer.  As long as one has not gone beyond this, one remains as impure and polluted as a poll-bearer.  The pollution of bearing this dead body cannot be washed away by dip in any tank.  Bathing in the waters of Atman alone can remove this pollution."

The Brahmins though initially feeling vindicated, were now startled and stared at each other.  In an instant, the entire complexion of the issue stood transformed.  Everyone without exception was equally polluted.  All people shared their fate!

(Source: Reminsicences.  Smt.  T.R. Kanakammal.)

Arunachala Siva.         

Dear Paul,

The five kosas are five sheaths or covers with which our body is
made up of.  The first is Annamaya Kosa, the food sheath.  The
second is Prana maya kosa, breath sheath.  The third is manomaya
kosa, the mind sheath.  The fourth is Vijnana maya kosa, the knowledge or intellect sheath.  The fifth is Anandamaya kosa, the
bliss sheath.  These need not be imagined as one within another.
Bhagavan Ramana has explained that these are all inter oven, like
a hand kerchief.  The hand kerchief has got a thickness, a colour, a texture, a size, and then the smell, depending upon the perfume one
uses.  All the five sheaths are interoven as all the above things are
interoven in the handkerchief.

Arunachala Siva.       

General Discussion / Re: How to manage profession and spirituality
« on: April 06, 2009, 11:43:52 AM »
Spiritual practices done within Sri Ramanasramam or any other Ashram or temples, first reduces the speed of the mind, the
swiftness with which thoughts gush forth.  This is possible because
of the power generated in such holy places.  This helps better
meditation or self enquiry.

Arunachala Siva.

Mr. Devaraja Mudaliar was a lawyer by profession.  He had a highly
developed legal mind which railed against inconsistency in any form and he liked to have every details accounted for!

When Tamil poets such as Manikkavachagar and Tiru Jnana Sambandhar alluded their renunciation in verse, they would write:
"I gave up my spirit, my body and my personal professions."
[Andre enathu aaviyum, udalum, udamai ellaamum.... said Manikkvachagar.]  But Bhagavan Ramana in one of His verses, [Arunachala Navamani Malai verse 7] does not include "personal
possessions" among the lits of items which He renounced.  Devaraja Mudaliar took Him to task on this point, wanting to know whey Bhagavan did not mention giving up His personal belongings.

Bhagavan Ramana replied: "I did not have any belongings.  How
can I give up which I do not have?"  But Devaraja Mudaliar was not satisfied.  "So, you Bhagavan, you mean Manikkavachagar and
Tiru Jnana Sambandhar had possessions?"

Bhagavan:  "I don't know about them.  But I didn't have any, so
I didn't write it that way!"

(Source: Reminiscences. Smt. T.R. Kanakammal.)

Arunachala Siva.   

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Madalasa Upadesha
« on: April 05, 2009, 05:37:20 PM »
Dear Nagaraj,

Yes.  Finger should touch the fire to get the burns.  And that is how,
self enquiry has to be done.  Bhagavan Ramana says in Arunachala
Ashtakam, Verse 5:  I have to 'rub' the 'mind' that is Ruby, on the
stone that is "mind", so that the Ruby will shine. Read and understand this paradox.  Who am I? enquiry is essentially a thought process.  This thought burns away all the other thoughts and finally,
like the stick that stirs the funeral pyre, gets itself finally burnt! Finally one throws away the stone and gets or becomes the Ruby!

Arunachala Siva.