Author Topic: S.S Cohen Shares His Experiences At Ramana Ashramam During World War II  (Read 1940 times)


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When I returned to my ashram in July 1940, the Second World War had already broken out, and darkness had fallen on the hearts and minds of men. Bombs had dropped on Warsaw like rain. Poland and Czechoslovakia had been subdued. Many millions of innocent men, women, and children, had been driven to concentration camps for a dread purpose. The Maginot Line had cracked and crumbled, and Paris had fallen to the mighty army of the invader.

I had expected to see some marks of this widespread devastation on the life of Ramanashram, but on arrival I found none whatever, except, to my surprise, a doubled rate of flow of devotees.

The only other physical change I observed was in the Master’s body, which started showing signs of age, which had compelled the management to curtail the attendance hours at night. At midday the doors of the hall were closed for two hours for his siesta – the first time in the history of the Ashram. At first Bhagavan demurred but soon he grew resigned to the situation, seeing that it had some justification.

The stream of visitors continued to increase, so that soon afterwards sitting accommodation and easy access to the Master on personal matters became difficult.

In fact under the new rules, letters and articles written by devotees were made first to pass the censorship of the office before they could be shown to him, which was not without reasons. One or two devotees, taking advantage of the Master’s compassionate nature, took to write to him letters running to several pages in very small hand on petty, often imaginary,difficulties in their spiritual practice, on which he strained his eyes for one or two hours. He was too scrupulous to let a single word go unread, which encouraged them to write still longer letters and daily too, imagining their epistles to be of great interest to Bhagavan till the management found it imperative to clamp down a ban on all correspondence to be shown or written to him.

A year or two later a colony of devotees, with families for the most parts, sprang up round the Ashram. As Bhagavan’s body grew weaker, his power to influence and attract increased,so that the tide of settlers and visitors continued steadily to rise and included world-famed philosophers, scholars, politicians,ministers, provincial governors, generals, foreign diplomats,members of foreign missions. They all came, whether in war or peace, in rain or shine. The tide swelled and swelled and reached its zenith in 1950, the last year of his earthly life. Till the last the Master continued to instruct. In the whole history of the Ashram there has never been a bar to the seeking of spiritual guidance orally from him, except in the very last year when he was seriously laid up and the visitors of their own accord desisted from troubling him.



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Dear prasanth,

Yes.  He was available 24X 7.  When the two hour ban was made
not permitting anyone inside the Hall, by the Sarvadikari, Bhagavan
Ramana once sat outside the Hall.  When Chinnaswami and others
came running to Him and asked:  Bhagavan!  Why this?  Bhagavan
Ramana reprimanded them saying:  "You have put 2 hour ban to
enter the Hall. It applies to me also. So I do not enter the Hall.

The Sarvadikari and others understood what He meant and they
lifted the ban, immediately.

Arunachala Siva.