Author Topic: Ramaswami Pillai Day - 14.01.2010 - (1)  (Read 1569 times)


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Ramaswami Pillai Day - 14.01.2010 - (1)
« on: January 14, 2010, 09:13:49 AM »
Ramaswami Pillai or popularly known as Cycle Ramaswami Pillai
amongst Ramana devotees, merged with Bhagavan on 14.01.1994,
at the ripe age of 100.  He first met Bhagavan Ramana during his
college days in Skandasramam.  This must be around 1916-17.  Thus
he was one of the oldest devotees like Kunju Swami.  Ramaswami
Pillai used to keep a bicyle and all odd jobs that Bhagavan Ramana
or any other devotees had given him in the town, he used to rush
in that bicycle and complete them swiftly.  Hence the prefix 'Cycle.'

Ramaswami Pillai's Samadhi is there along with another 4 Samadhis
behind the Cow Lakshmi's Samadhi, as you cross over the "rakshnai"
protection walls, constructed by Annamalai Swami.  There is a
Siva Lingam above the Samadhi and there is only small Tamil poem,
narrating his liberation, perhaps by Sri Sadhu Om.

Ramaswami Pillai hailed from Chidambaram.  He got a picture
of Bhagavan Ramana from one of his teachers in Chidambaram
who also told him a lot about Bhagavan.  Pillai wanted to meet
Bhagavan at once.

When he saw Bhagavan Ramana, in Skandasramam, stretching
Hislegs and reclining majestically, he observed:  "Like a great
king who camps in forest to hunt dangerous animals, He was sitting
majestically on the Arunachala Hill, which invites people like us to have our animal-like mind destroyed."

Once he had the opportunity of spending a night at Skandasramam
with Bhagavan.  A devotee told Sri Pillai that he would have to go
without supper that night, since Bhagavan lived on one meal a day
(lunch) at that time, and no food was brought or prepared at night.
Sri Pillai did not worry about it and he wanted to stay with Bhagavan.

Unexpectedly, around 8.30 PM, Ramanatha Brahmachari came with
one half of a coconut and some sweet pongal.  Bhagavan said:
"As there is nothing else to eat, mix sweet pongal and the scrapped
coconut, add water and warm it, and drink it as a gruel."

When this was ready, Bhagavan asked: Do we have sugar or rock
candy?  There was nothing left.  Bhagavan said: Then, we can add a
little salt. Even that was not available.

Around 9 PM, there was a knock on the door. 
Wonder of wonders!  At that odd time, drenched in rain, came two
young women, with rock candy and some bananas.  These were
pounded and added it to the gruel. 

Bhagavan Ramana said:  "I will share this gruel with you and break
my 365 days of upavasa, fasting at night!"

Sri Pillai was thrilled and almost shed tears.

"Have you not ruled over me with your grace?"  -  Sri Arunachala
Padigam, Verse 1.

(Source:  Kunju Swami's reminiscences.)

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Ramaswami Pillai Day - 14.01.2010 - (1)
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2010, 07:31:02 PM »
More experiences of Ramana Maharshi's disciple Ramaswami Pillai.


From boyhood I was spiritually inclined. Although coming from a meat-eating family, I turned vegetarian while still a boy. I was mainly a worshipper of Shiva but learned about Christ and Buddha too and revered them. Twice I visited the great Muslim shrine at Nagore, and I understood that Allah was only another name for God. My one ambition in life was to see God face to face. This was granted to me while still a schoolboy in March of 1917 when I first went to Skandashram and set my eyes upon Bhagavan. Reclining on the couch, he looked indescribably majestic. Since then he has been God in human form for me, my God, Guru and All. I did not ask him for anything. I was filled to overflowing by just seeing him. He turned on me that look of heart melting Grace that he so often bestowed on newcomers. After a few days I had to return home. There I learned the "Marital Garland of Letters" and spent my time reciting it either mentally or aloud and even writing it out.

It was on my second visit to Skandashram that I first made pradakshina. A visitor from Madurai whom I knew wanted to go round the hill with Bhagavan and I joined him. At that time the lower slopes were still forested and we took the forest path for a good part of the way before coming out on the road. Next day I had a sudden urge to go round by myself. I started out as before but soon lost my way on the forest track. As I started I had noticed that one of the Ashram dogs was following me. Now it ran in front and began to lead. At once it flashed on me that this was Bhagavan's work. With tears of gratitude and joy I followed my guide. He took me by the same path as the previous day until we came to the road and then disappeared; and I saw him at the Ashram when I got back. At the time I told nobody about this. It was my first experience of my spiritual relationship with Bhagavan and I was more than ever convinced that he would guide me through the unknown paths of life. Such an incident may appear trivial to the reader, but when it actually happens it strengthens one's faith in Bhagavan, who alone can help by his infinite Grace in opening one's inner vision.

For a whole year at Skandashram Bhagavan took only one meager meal a day. I was on a visit there the day he broke this fast. I had decided to stay the night even though there was no food for an evening meal for the rest of us. I didn't feel hungry. At about 7:30 one of the devotees, Ramanatha Brahmachari, came back with some pieces of broken coconut and some rice that he had been given at a ceremony he attended in town.

Bhagavan suggested that we should boil it up on the charcoal stove we had there and share it, as was the usual custom. He told us to see whether there was any sugar or sugar candy left from gifts by earlier visitors to flavor it with. We looked but there was nothing at all. It was dark and raining outside and we could not go into town for anything. I was near to tears that Bhagavan should ask for something — so rare an event — and we should not be able to provide it. At that very moment the door opened and two students came in with a bag of sugar candy and a bunch of bananas that they had brought to present to Bhagavan. The meal was cooked and eaten, the two visitors also being invited.

Bhagavan remarked that we had asked for sugar candy and got bananas also, which could be cut up and served like a pickle with the food. After eating he said that it was just a year, 365 days exactly, since he had limited himself to one meal a day and that from now on he would eat in the evening also. That was how things happened with Bhagavan. He did not work miracles, things just happened right.

Miracles are generally thought of as deliberate acts willed by a person, but happenings like this are the result of spiritual forces naturally and always at work. The Jnani is God Himself in human form. He never wills anything but things happen in his presence and the ignorant attribute them to him. His state is pure awareness. It is a matter of experience. One may get a glimpse of it in his presence.



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Re: Ramaswami Pillai Day - 14.01.2010 - (1)
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2010, 10:35:26 AM »
Ramaswami Pillai was endearingly called as Cycle Ramaswami Pillai.  He
used to go for all sorts of oddjobs inside the town in his cycle!  Once
some devotees had to leave the Asramam back to the railway station
since train was starting earlier than supper.  Bhagavan Ramana as soon
as Tiruchuzhi Dosas were ready, told Ramaswami Pillai to take a few
to the station.  He readily agreed and took the parcel and rushed in cycle
to the station.  Fortunately the train had not started still.  He went inside
each compartment and found the visitors and handed over the dosais to
them.  Once, I think, when S.S. Cohen visited for the first time the Asramam,
he found that his suitcases keys were not there.  He came and sat
in the Hall, with just a wash and no change of clothes and his mind was
somewhat disturbed.  He closed his eyes and meditated.  A  few minutes
later, there was a sound - "thud" on his lap.  He opened his eyes and
found the keys!  Bhagavan had told Cycle Ramaswami Pillai to go and
search in the railway station!   There the station master, was waiting with
the keys, since they had been found, in a compartment, when fresh travellers had boarded the compartment! The station master was waiting for someone
from the Asramam to pick up the keys and he had also guessed that these
must belong to the western devotee, who had alighted the train!

Arunachala Siva.