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Arunachala / The greatness of feeding People at Arunachala
« on: January 17, 2013, 02:54:18 PM »

SANAKA requested Brahma to enlighten them about the benefits derived from conducting annadana (feeding of the poor) at Arunachala.

Brahma replied: There is no good deed equal to annadana in the three worlds. Annam (rice) is the basis of prana (life-breath). Hence one who gives annam gives his prana. For this reason one who desires his own welfare should offer annam to the needy and the poor. If this is performed at Arunachala, he attains great merit and becomes the ruler of all the worlds. Neither Vishnu nor I can measure that merit. Even the giving of wealth and jewellery as charity cannot equal the merits obtained by annadana at Arunachala.

Once a king named Singadvajan, descendent of the famous Surya vamsa, ruler of the Dravida country, and known for his valour and generosity, was giving away jewels and diamonds to learned brahmins. In addition he gifted away everything that he possessed. He however did not perform annadana even once. When he died he was taken to the abode of devas. He was succeded by his son, Chitrakethu who excelled his father in might and valour. He too like his father gifted away land, jewels etc. But he too failed to perform annadana.

One day Singadvajan happened to meet the Sage Narada, the foremost of rishis, in the celestial region. Sage Narada said: O King! The feeding of the poor (annadana) supercedes all other gifts made on earth. It bestows knowledge of the Self, as the Supreme Lord dearly loves the one who performs annadana. You donated everything but you did not perform annadana. He who feeds the poor, is offered nectar in the heavens.

As requested by Singadvajan, Narada approached his son Chitrakethu on earth. Chitrakethu welcomed the Sage. After duly accepting his respects, Narada informed Chitrakethu that although his father Singadvajan gifted away everything he had not performed annadana. He alone who had fed the poor and the needy shall receive ambrosia in heaven. Hence Chitrakethu should perform annadana so that his father shall receive the ambrosia. The king decided to perform annadana.

However, the king wanted to know as to where on this earth annadana should be performed so that it shall bestow merits on him and his father. Narada informed him that the merit one obtained by feeding a lakh of people elsewhere cannot equal that of feeding one person in Kasi, and the merit gained by feeding just one poor brahmin at Arunachala will out-weigh that of feeding a crore at Kasi. Particularly if this was done on a dwadasi day (i.e. twelfth day counted from the day of new moon/full moon), it would be equal to the merit obtained by feeding the poor throughout the year.

After listening to the wise words of Sage Narada, Chitrakethu performed annadana everyday at Arunachala. By this act of the son, the father in the celestial region received nectar and in due course passed on to the various upper regions and finally merged in Siva. Hence everyone should endeavour to perform annadana, particularly at Arunachala, for it not only benefits the person who does it, but also bestows great spiritual merit upon his kith and kin.

General Discussion / Re: we are missing a point.
« on: January 17, 2013, 02:46:04 PM »
Dear Forum Members

Very Very nice posts regarding planning of future and Sri Kunju swamis history.

Arunachala / Re: Photos of Bhagavan and Arunchala Temples
« on: January 17, 2013, 12:00:26 AM »
Sri Ramana in Arunachala Hill

Bhagavan story in Tamil

By Sri Ramanachalam

My father was M.S. Venkataraman of Madurai, who was a few years younger to Bhagavan. He and Bhagavan lived in the same house which was situated close to the Vaigai River. He would join Venkataraman and his friends in their nocturnal escapades. After sneaking out in the dead of the night the boys would go to river bank and practice 'chilambam' (a martial art using long bamboo poles). Once when my father returned my grandfather caught him, tied him to a tree in front of the house and caned him. Venkataraman was watching. Later when my father heard about the young Brahmana Swami dwelling in Virupaksha Cave at Arunachala he paid a visit to him out of curiosity. But the moment he stepped into Bhagavan's presence he began to shed copious tears. To his amazement he found that there was nothing there of the former Venkataraman, his playmate. When he was about to leave, Brahmana Swami asked him in subdued tone, "Is that tree still there in front of your house?"

There are two Mahans in our country. One is Ramana Maharshi and the other Gandhiji. The Maharshi gives us Peace. Gandhiji does not allow anyone to remain in peace. Both do so for the same reason, for the spiritual freedom of India. — Smt.Sarojini Naidu (1938).

General topics / Re: Naming Baby
« on: January 14, 2013, 05:29:48 PM »

The names given by Atmavichar is nice.  I  have seen this  name  from this forum Krpasindhuh - The merciful One.

General Discussion / Re: Book on Lord Shiva
« on: January 14, 2013, 11:20:13 AM »
Dear Anand sir

General Discussion / Re: Book on Lord Shiva
« on: January 14, 2013, 11:18:45 AM »
Dear Anand

This site may be useful to you

Arunachala / Re: Photos of Bhagavan and Arunchala Temples
« on: January 14, 2013, 01:41:39 AM »
Sri Ramana ashramam Bookshop

Arunachala / Re: Photos of Bhagavan and Arunchala Temples
« on: January 14, 2013, 01:40:14 AM »
Sri Nochur ji at Ramanashramam

General Discussion / Re: Sankranti / Pongal Greetings for 14.01.2013.
« on: January 13, 2013, 03:09:50 PM »
Wish you a Happy Pongal to all of you

Sri Bhagavan once said that even to think of God,we must have the Grace of God. There is no real quest without Grace. When we think of Him, when we meditate on Him, we are not doing anything of our own accord. He makes us think of Him and meditate on Him. We can't take any credit for this ourselves. We are not doing these activities, we are made to do these. The moment we are fully conscious of this, we shall be utterly humble. Whatever happens during meditation, happens because He makes it happen the way it happens. So there is no cause for joy or sorrow.

Sri Bhagavan never said, even once, that he thought of Arunachala. He said that Arunachala made him think of Arunachala and that he was grateful to Him for that. In Verse 3 of Arunachala Padigam Sri Bhagavan says: "I had no idea of thinking of you at all. And yet you drew me with your cord of Grace..." In Verse 49 of Aksharamanamalai, Sri Bhagavan says; "Wealth benignant, holy Grace that came to me unsought..." Everywhere Sri Bhagavan talks about the Grace that was showered unsought. He didn't seek Arunachala, but Arunachala chose him. Sri Bhagavan talks of his own utter insignificance and of the majesty, grandeur and glory of Arunachala. In Verse 5 of Arunachala Padigam Sri Bhagavan says, "From out of all the creatures in the world, what did you gain by choosing me? You saved me, did you not, from falling into the void and you have held me firmly fixed at your feet. Lord of the Ocean of Grace, my heart shrinks in modesty even at the thought of You. Long may you live, O Arunachala, and let me bend my head in praise and worship of You."

from the newsletters of Arunachala Ashramam

General Discussion / Re: Significance of Hanuman Jayanthi
« on: January 11, 2013, 01:28:02 PM »
Dear Atmavichar

Very nice story about  Lord Hanuman selfless service.   Sri Ram Jai Ram Jai Jai Ram.

One forenoon two Brahmins, whose dress and demeanour spoke of abject poverty, 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 hungry after having discharged their duties.
Custom demands that anyone entering a house recently visited by death should take a bath immediately on leaving. This stricture applies evermore so if one steps into the cremation ground, not to mention for those involved in removing and physically transporting the departed to the cremation grounds.
A heated argument had ensued between them about the propriety of coming to the Asramam to have a meal without having bathed. While one of them keenly felt the impropriety of transgressing this revered custom, the other dismissed it as impracticable in viz of their extreme hunger. Assured of a meal in the Asramam; which was quite on their way home; they thought they might appease their hunger. They came to the hall and sat down.
One of them excitedly and abruptly said "Swami, I have been insisting on the customary bath before we sit for our meal. Is is not bust just and proper ?" Bhagavan responded in a very soft tone, "No one can say you are unjust". The other at once in a voice greatly agitated 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 quietly replied, "Who says it is wrong? Not at all".
Shocked , looking at one another, they asked in one voice," but then who is wrong?"
Bhagavan answered," Don't think you alone are pallbearers. All of us are carrying these lifeless corpses. 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 pall-bearer. The pollution of bearing a dead body cannot be washed away by a dip in any tank. Bathing in the holy waters of the Atman alone can remove this pollution".
The Bramins, though initially felling 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.
The next minute, the two Brahmins were nowhere to be seen. None knew where they had one; to the dining hall for food or elsewhere. But one thing was certain, for their spritual hunger.
Bhagavan's words had been an unexpected feast.

from the Boundless Ocean of grace.Vol.VI

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