Author Topic: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna  (Read 85515 times)


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #225 on: December 03, 2012, 05:46:30 AM »
Master's experiences in samadhi

AMRITA: "Sir, how do you feel in samadhi?"

MASTER: "You may have heard that the cockroach, by intently meditating on the
bhramara, is transformed into a bhramara. Do you know how I feel then? I feel like a fish
released from a pot into the water of the Ganges."

AMRITA: "Don't you feel at that time even a trace of ego?"

MASTER: "Yes, generally a little of it remains. However hard you may rub a grain of gold
against a grindstone, still a bit of it always remains. Or again, take the case of a big fire; the
ego is like one of its sparks. In samadhi I lose outer consciousness completely; but God
generally keeps a little trace of ego in me for the enjoyment of divine communion.
Enjoyment is possible only when 'I' and 'you' remain".

"Again, sometimes God effaces even that trace of 'I'. Then one experiences jada samadhi or
nirvikalpa samadhi. That experience cannot be described. A salt doll went to measure the
depth of the ocean, but before it had gone far into the water it melted away. It became
entirely one with the water of the ocean. Then who was to come back and tell the ocean's


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #226 on: December 04, 2012, 07:10:11 AM »
Chapter 9 ADVICE TO THE BRAHMOS Saturday, April 7, 1883

SRI RAMAKRISHNA was visiting Balaram in Calcutta, with Narendra, Bhavanath,
Rakhal, M., and others. Balaram, at the Master's bidding, had invited some of the young
devotees to lunch. Sri Ramakrishna often said to him, "Feed them now and then; that will
confer on you the merit of feeding holy men." The Master looked on his young disciples,
yet untouched by "woman and gold", as veritable embodiments of God.

A few days earlier Sri Ramakrishna had been to Keshab's house with Narendra and Rakhal
to see a performance of the play entitled Nava-Vrindavan. Narendra had taken part in the
performance, in which Keshab had played the role of Pavhari Baba.

MASTER: "Keshab came on the stage in the role of a holy man and sprinkled the 'Water of
Peace'. But I didn't like it. The idea of sprinkling such water on a theatrical stage after a

"Another gentleman played the part of Sin. That is not good either. One should not commit
sin; one should not even feign it."

Narendra's music

The Master wanted to hear Narendra sing. The young disciple was not feeling well, but at
the Master's earnest request he sang to the accompaniment of the tanpura:

Sing, O bird that nestles deep within my heart!
Sing, O bird that sits on the Kalpa-Tree of Brahman!
Sing God's everlasting praise. . . .

Then he sang:

Brahman, Joy of the whole universe, Supreme Effulgence;
God beginningless, Lord of the world, the very Life of life! . . .


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #227 on: December 06, 2012, 05:58:59 AM »
And again:
O King of Kings, reveal Thyself to me!
I crave Thy mercy. Cast on me Thy glance!
At Thy dear feet I dedicate my life,
Seared in the fiery furnace of this world.
My heart, alas, is deeply stained with sin;
Ensnared in maya, I am all but dead.
Compassionate Lord! Revive my fainting soul
With the life-giving nectar of Thy grace.

Narendra continued:
Upon the tray of the sky blaze bright
The lamps of Sun and moon;
Like diamonds shine the glittering stars
To deck Thy wondrous form.
The sweet Malaya breeze blows soft,
For fragrant incense smoke;
The moving air sways to and fro
The fan before Thy holy face:
Like gleaming votive lights
The fresh and flowery groves appear.
How wonderful Thy worship is,
O Slayer of birth and death!
The sacred Om, from space arisen,
Is the resounding drum.
My mind craves nectar day and night
At Hari's Lotus Feet;
Oh, shower the waters of Thy grace
On thirsty Nanak, blessed Lord;
And may Thy hallowed name
Become his everlasting home!

He sang again:
In Wisdom's firmament the moon of Love is rising full,
And Love's flood-tide, in surging waves, is flowing everywhere.
O Lord, how full of bliss Thou art! Victory unto Thee! . . .


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #228 on: December 07, 2012, 06:42:20 AM »
Then at the Master's bidding Bhavanath sang:

Where is a friend like Thee, O Essence of Mercy?
Where is another friend like Thee
To stand by me through pain and pleasure?
Who, among all my friends, forgives my failings,
Bringing me comfort for my grief,
Soothing my spirit in its terror?
Thou art the Helmsman who dost steer life's craft
Across the world's perilous sea;
Thy grace it is alone, O Lord,
That silences my raging passions' storm.
Thou pourest out the waters of peace
Upon my burning, penitent soul:
And Thine is the bosom that will shelter me
When every other friend I own
Deserts me in my dying hour.

True renunciation

Narendra said to the Master with a smile, referring to Bhavanath, "He has given up fish and

MASTER: "Why so? What is the matter with fish and betel-leaf? They aren't harmful. The
renunciation of 'woman and gold' is the true renunciation.
"Where is Rakhal?"

A DEVOTEE: "He is asleep, sir."

MASTER (with a smile): "Once a man went to a certain place to see a theatrical
performance, carrying a mat under his arm. Hearing that it would be some time before the
performance began, he spread the mat on the floor and fell asleep. When he woke up it was
all over. (All laugh.) Then he returned home with the mat under his arm."


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #229 on: December 08, 2012, 06:47:49 AM »
Ramdayal was very ill and lay in bed in another room. The Master went there to inquire
about him.
About four o'clock in the afternoon some members of the Brahmo Samaj arrived. The
Master began to converse with them.

Study of scriptures for the beginner

A BRAHMO: "Sir, have you read the Panchadasi?"

MASTER: "At first one should hear books like that and indulge in reasoning. But later on-
Cherish my precious Mother Syama
Tenderly within, O mind;
May you and I alone behold Her,
Letting no one else intrude.

"One should hear the scriptures during the early stages of spiritual discipline. After
attaining God there is no lack of knowledge. Then the Divine Mother supplies it without

"A child spells out every word as he writes, but later on he writes fluently.

"The goldsmith is up and doing while melting gold. As long as the gold hasn't melted, he
works the bellows with one hand, moves the fan with the other, and blows through a pipe
with his mouth. But the moment the gold melts and is poured into the mould, he is relieved
of all anxiety.

"Mere reading of the scriptures is not enough. A person cannot understand the true
significance of the scriptures if he is attached to the world. Though with intense delight I
learnt many poems and dramas, I have forgotten them all, entrapped in Krishna's love".

"Keshab enjoys the world and practises yoga as well. Living in the world, he directs his
mind to God."

A devotee described the Convocation of Calcutta University, saying that the meeting
looked like a forest of human heads.

MASTER: "The feeling of the Divine is awakened in me when I see a great crowd of
people. Had I seen that meeting, I should have been overwhelmed with spiritual fervour."


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #230 on: December 09, 2012, 08:41:18 AM »
Sunday, April 8, 1883

It was Sunday morning. The Master, looking like a boy, was seated in his room, and near
him was another boy, his beloved disciple Rakhal. M.entered and saluted the Master.
Ramlal also was in the room, and Kishori, Manilal Mallick, and several other devotees
gathered by and by.

Manilal Mallick, a business man, had recently been to Benares, where he owned a

Trailanga Swami and Bhaskarananda

MASTER: "So you have been to Benares. Did you see any holy men there?"

MANILAL: "Yes, sir. I paid my respects to Trailanga Swami, Bhaskarananda, and others."

MASTER: "Tell us something about them."

MANILAL: "Trailanga Swami is living in the same temple where he lived before-on the
Manikarnika Ghat; near the Benimadhav Minaret. People say he was formerly in a more
exalted spiritual state. He could perform many miracles. Now he has lost much of that

MASTER: "That is the criticism of worldly people."

MANILAL: "Trailanga Swami keeps a strict vow of silence. Unlike him, Bhaskarananda is
friendly with all."

MASTER: "Did you have any conversation with Bhaskarananda?"

MANILAL: "Yes, sir. We had a long talk. Among other things we discussed the problem of
good and evil. He said to me: 'Don't follow the path of evil. Give up sinful thoughts. That is
how God wants us to act. Perform only those duties that are virtuous.' "


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #231 on: December 10, 2012, 12:43:05 AM »
Meditate, O my mind, on the Lord Hari,
The Stainless One, Pure Spirit through and through.
How peerless is the Light that in Him shines!
How soul-bewitching is His wondrous form!
How dear is He to all His devotees!
Ever more beauteous in fresh-blossoming love
That shames the splendour of a million moons,
Like lightning gleams the glory of His form,
Raising erect the hair for very joy.
I drink no ordinary wine, but Wine of Everlasting Bliss,
As I repeat my Mother Kali's name;
It so intoxicates my mind that people take me to be drunk!
First my guru gives molasses for the making of the Wine;
My longing is the ferment to transform it.
Knowledge, the maker of the Wine, prepares it for me then;
And when it is done, my mind imbibes it from the bottle of the mantra,
Taking the Mother's name to make it pure.
Drink of this Wine, says Ramprasad, and the four fruits of life are yours.


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #232 on: December 10, 2012, 06:21:51 AM »
Beautiful painting of Sri Ramakrishna listening to Naren's singing of these wonderful songs,with the Holy Ganges in the background.
Thanks very much.


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #233 on: December 10, 2012, 06:25:51 AM »
The seer of God transcends good and evil
MASTER: "Yes, that is also a path, meant for worldly-minded people. But those whose
spiritual consciousness has been awakened, who have realized that God alone is real and all
else illusory, cherish a different ideal. They are aware that God alone is the Doer and others
are His instruments.
"Those whose spiritual consciousness has been awakened never make a false step. They do
not have to reason in order to shun evil. They are so full of love of God that whatever
action they undertake is a good action. They are fully conscious that they are not the doers
of their actions, but mere servants of God. They always feel: 'I am the machine and He is
the Operator. I do as He does through me. I speak as He speaks through me. I move as He
moves me.'
"Fully awakened souls are beyond virtue and vice. They realize that it is God who does
Seeing God in everything
"There was a monastery in a certain place. The monks residing there went out daily to beg
their food. One day a monk, while out for his alms, saw a landlord beating a man
mercilessly. The compassionate monk stepped in and asked the landlord to stop. But the
landlord was filled with anger and turned his wrath against the innocent monk. He beat the
monk till he fell unconscious on the ground. Someone reported the matter to the monastery.
The monks ran to the spot and found their brother lying there. Four or five of them carried
him back and laid him on a bed. He was still unconscious. The other monks sat around him
sad at heart; some were fanning him. Finally someone suggested that he should be given a
little milk to drink. When it was poured into his mouth he regained consciousness. He
opened his eyes and looked around. One of the monks said, 'Let us see whether he is fully
conscious and can recognize us.' Shouting into his ear, he said, 'Revered sir, who is giving
you milk?' 'Brother,' replied the holy man in a low voice, 'He who beat me is now giving
me milk.'
"But one does not attain such a state of mind without the realization of God."
MANILAL: "Sir, what you have just said applies to a man of a very lofty spiritual state. I
talked on such topics in a general way with Bhaskarananda."
MASTER: "Does he live in a house?"
MANILAL: "Yes, sir. He lives with a devotee."
MASTER: "How old is he now?"
MANILAL: "About fifty-five."
MASTER: "Did you talk about anything else?"
MANILAL: "I asked him how to cultivate bhakti. He said: 'Chant the name of God. Repeat
the name of Rama.' "
MASTER: "That is very good."


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #234 on: December 11, 2012, 06:34:53 AM »
The worship was over in the temples and the bells rang for the food offerings in the shrines.
As it was a summer noon the sun was very hot. The flood-tide began in the Ganges and a
breeze came up from the south. Sri Ramakrishna was resting in his room after his meal.
The people of Basirhat, Rakhal's birth-place, had been suffering from a severe drought
during the summer months.
MASTER (to Manilal): "Rakhal says that the people in his native village have been
suffering seriously from a scarcity of water. Why don't you build a reservoir there? That
will do the people good. (Smiling) You have so much money; what will you do with all
your wealth? But they say that telis are very calculating." (All laugh.)
Manilal was truly a calculating man, though he suffered no lack of money. In later years he
set up an endowment of twenty-five thousand rupees for the maintenance of poor students.
Manilal made no answer to these words of the Master about his caste characteristics. Later
on, in the course of the conversation, he remarked casually: "Sir, you referred to a reservoir.
You might as well have confined yourself to that suggestion. Why allude to the 'oil-man
caste' and all that?"
Some of the devotees smiled to themselves. The Master laughed.
Presently a few elderly members of the Brahmo Samaj arrived. The room was full of
devotees. Sri Ramakrishna was sitting on his bed, facing the north. He kept smiling, and
talked to the Brahmo devotees in a joyous mood.


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #235 on: December 12, 2012, 06:21:53 AM »
Characteristics of divine love
MASTER: "You talk glibly about prema. But is it such a commonplace thing? There are
two characteristics of prema. First, it makes one forget the world. So intense is one's love of
God that one becomes unconscious of outer things. Chaitanya had this ecstatic love; he
'took a wood for the sacred grove of Vrindavan and the ocean for the dark waters of the
Jamuna'. Second, one has no feeling of 'my-ness' toward the body, which is so dear to man.
One wholly gets rid of the feeling that the body is the soul.

Indications of God-realization
"There are certain signs of God-realization. The man in whom longing for God manifests
its glories is not far from attaining Him. What are the glories of that longing? They are
discrimination, dispassion, compassion for living beings, serving holy men, loving their
company, chanting the name and glories of God, telling the truth, and the like. When you
see those signs of longing in an aspirant, you can rightly say that for him the vision of God
is not far to seek.
"The state of a servant's house will tell you unmistakably whether his master has decided to
visit it. First, the rubbish and jungle around the house are cleared up. Second, the soot and
dirt are removed from the rooms. Third, the courtyard, floors, and other places are swept
clean. Finally the master himself sends various things to the house such as a carpet, a
hubble-bubble for smoking, and the like. When you see these things arriving, you conclude
that the master will very soon come"


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #236 on: December 14, 2012, 05:51:21 AM »
A DEVOTEE: "Sir, should one first practise discrimination to attain self-control?"
MASTER: "That is also a path. It is called the path of vichara, reasoning. But the inner
organs are brought under control naturally through the path of devotion as well. It is rather
easily accomplished that way. Sense pleasures appear more and more tasteless as love for
God grows. Can carnal pleasure attract a grief-stricken man and woman the day their child
has died?"
Efficacy of japa and prayer
DEVOTEE: "How can I develop love for God?"
MASTER: "Repeat His name, and sins will disappear. Thus you will destroy lust, anger,
the desire for creature comforts, and so on."
DEVOTEE: "How can I take delight in God's name?"
MASTER: "Pray to God with a yearning heart that you may take delight in His name. He
will certainly fulfil your heart's desire."
So saying, the Master sang a song in his sweet voice, pleading with the Divine Mother to
show Her grace to suffering men:
O Mother, I have no one else to blame:
Alas! I sink in the well these very hands have dug.
With the six passions for my spade,
I dug a pit in the sacred land of earth;
And now the dark water of death gushes forth!
How can I save myself, O my Redeemer?
Surely I have been my own enemy;
How can I now ward off this dark water of death?
Behold, the waters rise to my chest!
How can I save myself? O Mother, save me!
Thou art my only Refuge; with Thy protecting glance
Take me across to the other shore of the world.


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #237 on: December 15, 2012, 08:18:00 AM »
The Master sang again:
What a delirious fever is this that I suffer from!
O Mother, Thy grace is my only cure.
False pride is the fever that racks my wasted form;
"I" and "mine" are my cry. Oh, what a wicked delusion!
My quenchless thirst for wealth and friends is never-ceasing;
How, then, shall I sustain my life?
Talk about things unreal, this is my wretched delirium,
And I indulge in it always, O Giver of all good fortune!
My eyes in seeming sleep are closed, my stomach is
filled With the vile worms of cruelty.
Alas! I wander about absorbed in unmeaning deeds;
Even for Thy holy name I have no taste, O Mother!
I doubt that I shall ever be cured of this malady.
Then the Master said: " 'Even for Thy holy name I have no taste.' A typhoid patient has
very little chance of recovery if he loses all taste for food; but his life need not be despaired
of if he enjoys food even a little. That is why one should cultivate a taste for God's name.
Any name will do-Durga, Krishna, or Siva. Then if, through the chanting of the name, one's
attachment to God grows day by day, and joy fills the soul, one has nothing to fear. The
delirium will certainly disappear; the grace of God will certainly descend.


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #238 on: December 16, 2012, 06:41:52 AM »
Parable of the two friends
" 'As is a man's feeling of love, so is his gain.' Once two friends were going along the street,
when they saw some people listening to a reading of the Bhagavata. 'Come, friend', said the
one to the other. 'Let us hear the sacred book.' So saying he went in and sat down. The
second man peeped in and went away. He entered a house of ill fame. But very soon he felt
disgusted with the place. 'Shame on me!' he said to himself. 'My friend has been listening to
the sacred word of Hari; and see where I am!' But the friend who had been listening to the
Bhagavata also became disgusted. 'What a fool I am!' he said. 'I have been listening to this
fellow's blah-blah, and my friend is having a grand time.' In course of time they both died.
The messenger of Death came for the soul of the one who had listened to the Bhagavata
and dragged it off to hell. The messenger of God came for the soul of the one who had been
to the house of prostitution and led it up to heaven.
"Verily, the Lord looks into a man's heart and does not judge him by what he does or where
he lives. 'Krishna accepts a devotee's inner feeling of love.'
"In the Kartabhaja sect, the teacher, while giving initiation, says to the disciple, 'Now
everything depends on your mind.' According to this sect, 'He who has the right mind find
the right way and also achieves the right end.' It was through the power of his mind that
Hanuman leapt over the sea. 'I am the servant of Rama; I have repeated the holy name of
Rama. Is there anything impossible for me?'-that was Hanuman's faith.


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Re: The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna
« Reply #239 on: December 17, 2012, 06:09:54 AM »
"Ignorance lasts as long as one has ego. There can be no liberation so long as the ego
remains. 'O God, Thou art the Doer and not I'-that is knowledge.
"By being lowly one can rise high. The chatak bird makes its nest on low ground, but it
soars very high in the sky. Cultivation is not possible on high land; in low land water
accumulates and makes cultivation possible.
"One must take the trouble to seek the company of holy persons. In his own home a man
hears only worldly talk; the disease of worldliness has become chronic with him. The caged
parrot sitting on its perch repeats, 'Rama! Rama!' But let it fly to the forest and it will
squawk in its usual way.
"Mere possession of money doesn't make a nobleman. One sign of the mansion of a
nobleman is that all the rooms are lighted. The poor cannot afford much oil, and
consequently cannot have so many lights. This shrine of the body should not be left dark;
one should illumine it with the lamp of Wisdom. Lighting the lamp of knowledge in the
chamber of your heart, Behold the face of the Mother, Brahman's Embodiment.
"Everyone can attain Knowledge. There are two entities: Jivatma, the individual soul, and
Paramatma, the Supreme Soul. Through prayer all individual souls can be united to the
Supreme Soul
. Every house has a connection for gas, and gas can be obtained from the
main storage-tank of the Gas Company. Apply to the Company, and it will arrange for your
supply of gas. Then your house will be lighted".