Author Topic: Ramana Maharshi 's First Bath And The First Shave In Tiruvannamalai  (Read 1941 times)


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12th April, 1948

After I came to this place, Tiruvannamalai, I had no bath for four months. One day, when I was in the compound of the Arunachala Temple, the wife of a devotee by name Ponnuswami, came unexpectedly, pulled me along, made me sit, cleaned my head with soap-nut powder and gave me a bath.

She had been coming to the temple every now and then; so I had thought that she had come as usual, but that day, she had come there prepared! That was my first bath.”

“Were you bathing regularly everyday afterwards?” I asked.

“No, there was no question of a bath; who was to make me bathe? Who was the one to bathe? After that, a year or so passed in the same way.

I had been in Gurumurtham for some time, you see, and as not many people came there every day, no one bothered me.

Even so, a lady, by name Minakshi, who used now and then to bring food to give me,one day brought a large pot and began to boil water.

I thought it was for some use for herself, but, taking from a basket some oil, soap-nut, etc., she said, ‘Swami, please come’.

I did not move. But would she keep quiet! She pulled me by the arm, made me sit, smeared the oil all over my body and bathed me.

The hair on the head which had got matted for want of care, was now spread out and hung down like the mane of a lion.

That was my second bath. After that,Palaniswami came and everything was adjusted into routine of daily baths.”

“No, that is so,” said Bhagavan, “it was never written then. Shaving was also like that. The shave I had on the day I came here has been recorded; the second was after a year and a half.

The hair had got matted and woven like a basket. Small stones and dust had settled down in it and the head used to feel heavy. I had also long nails, and a frightful appearance.

So people pressed me to have a shave, and I yielded. When my head was shaven clean, I began to wonder whether I had a head or not, it felt so light.

I shook my head this way and that to assure myself that it was there. That showed the amount of burden I had been carrying on my head.”

Source: Letters from Sri Ramanasramam VOLUMES I, II & Letters from and Recollections of Sri Ramanasramam By SURI NAGAMMA Translated by D. S. SASTRI


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Re: Ramana Maharshi 's First Bath And The First Shave In Tiruvannamalai
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2010, 05:58:09 PM »
Dear prasanth,

I would rather say that Bhagavan's first bath was on 1st September,
1896.  It was a Tuesday, around 11 am.  He went straight into the
Big Temple.  No one was surprisingly seen inside the Temple.  He
went into the sanctum sanctorum and hugged Arunachaleswara,
saying:  "Father!  As per your command, I have come to you."

Soon, He came out of the main temple and was near Ayyankulam
Tank.  A barber asked Him: "Sami!  Should I give you a tonsure?"
Bhagavan agreed and the tonsuring was complete.  Now bath?
Where to bathe?  More importantly, why should there be a bath
for this body?  -  He was thoughtful for a while.-

But Mother Unnamulai, Nature, thought it otherwise.  Why should
He leave the customary practice?  Soon there was a downpour!
Mind you, it was September, and the monsoon was yet to start
in Tamil Nadu.  But rains did come and He was fully drenched
in the rain.  The bath was complete.

AruL Nani suranthu angu aruivyai perugum
Auna maa malai enum anbe! 

                  - Sri Arunachala Padigam, Verse 1, last two lines.

O Love! in the shape of Arunachala!
You caused grace to well up in abundance and pour forth
    as a stream!

Arunachla Siva.


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Re: Ramana Maharshi 's First Bath And The First Shave In Tiruvannamalai
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2010, 06:04:39 PM »
Well said and indeed you are right Subramanian Garu.


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Re: Ramana Maharshi 's First Bath And The First Shave In Tiruvannamalai
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2010, 06:11:49 PM »
DEVARAJA MUDALIAR writes about this incident as follows,


Early in the morning, old Mr. Ranganatha Iyer told Bhagavan, “We have had a very good shower of rain last night.It is fortunate that it did not interfere with our celebrations yesterday, but came on only in the night after everything was over.”

Bhagavan said, “I remember the same thing happened on the night of 1-9-1896, when I arrived here. It seems they had no rains for a long time then. But on that night there was a heavy downpour. I was then staying at the mantapam in front of the Big Temple.

Only that morning for the first time I had discarded all my clothes, except a cod-piece and, on account of the rains beating in, and the cold winds blowing about, I found the cold unbearable, and so I ran from there and took shelter on the pial of a house nearby.

About midnight some inmates of the house came out opening the street door and I ran into the Big Temple. For some days after that too, it rained!”