Author Topic: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings  (Read 351309 times)


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1425 on: December 05, 2015, 06:43:32 AM »

Devaraja Mudaliar writes in his entry of 2nd Feb 1946 of Day by Day:

One Ananda Swami from Mount Abu, put the following questions and received the answers:

Q:  The books say that the Purusha is angushta pramana. What is meant by this?

Bhagavan: Evidently the books must be referring to the upadhi in which the Purusha is manifesting.
They cannot mean that the all pervasive Purusha is angushta pramana.

Q:  Is that Purusha in the heart?

Bhagavan:  You mean the physical heart.  It cannot be. But the books describe a heart which is
an inverted lotus with a cavity inside and a flame in that cavity and all that. In such a psychic heart
[Heart], the Purusha may be said to abide and the flame may be of that angushta pramana,
the size of a little finger.

[Bhagavan describes this Heart in Sad Darsanam, Supplement.
But He has described it to the devotees only on a few occasions
like this one.]

(Source: As indicated above)

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1426 on: December 13, 2015, 06:44:30 AM »

Lakshmana Sarma in his last few verses of Vartikam says:

The Self, who is pure Consciousness, is alone true.  The Blissful One (Siva) is not other than the
Self.  This final Vedantic teaching of the Upanishads has been declared by the Master from His own
experience.  (Vartikam 43)

The Self alone is dearest to all.  For His sake, other things are also dear.  Thus it is clear that the Self
is Bliss by Nature.  (Vartikam 44)

All worldly pleasures are just tiny particles of His Bliss.  Hence it is said by the wise that there is no
gain equal to the gain of the Self. ( Vartikam 45)

This Vartikam 45, is also described in the Benedictory Verse of 108 Holy Names of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi, by Viswanatha Swami.  Apara satchit sukavari.... and Yastanor Arunachalasya

Let us meditate in the heart on Ramana, the Boundless Ocean of Being-Awareness-Bliss of
which, the universes but a wave, the steadfast one established firmly in the Heart-Cave's depth,
Free from distracting thought.

To you who gained new birth by remembering the feet of Arunachala-Siva, and, swept away by
the vast, swelling tide of His grace divine, became Himself;  to you, who dwelling in the heart
as sole monarch, purify the world by constant tapas,
to you, Sri Ramana, the world-transcending light,
we offer adoration.

Kapali Sastri sums up:  In the first half of the verse, it has been established that the relationship
between the world and its cause Arunachala is that of a picture and its supporting base.  In the
second half, the relationship of the individual soul to its refuge Arunachala is portrayed.

The Jiva is Arunachala's own form.  The status of Arunachala as the support of the world and the
form of the jiva confers on him the name of the Heart, which is the supreme sense of the word
'I-I'.  Therefore, mention has been made of his act of dancing which is born with him.  This act,
some call as Maya, and as said in Srimad Bhagavad Gita, deluding all beings with this Maya, the Lord
stands in the Heart.

Arunachala Siva.   


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1427 on: December 15, 2015, 07:11:18 AM »

Sadhu Natananda had composed a Tamizh poem titled Atma Gita after Bhagavan Ramana's
Mahasamadhi. The poem is called Nenjaga Kanni, Couplets an address of the mind to the Self.

A few excerpts:-

1.  O mind!  That which became the Jnana Guru Ramana, who
transformed me into Consciousness by teaching the difficult-
to-teach truth, is indeed Bhuma (Brahman).

7-11.  O mind!  It is extremely rare for someone like Ramana,
who came as a Sadguru for the whole world, to appear even once
in a yuga (eon).  It is our great good fortune that we also took
birth, and became His slave at the same time as the Lord incarnated.  The venerable old lady,
Avviayar (a Tamil poetess) said:  If one practices worship of Siva for many many lives, then
good sense will blossom slightly!  Today, I became an example to the world, proving that there
is no fault in Avvaiayar's statement.  This is an indication that I have worshipped the Lord through
the good chariya* and so on.  The aim of performing such as chariya is only to approach the
feet of the Supreme Guru.

(* good nishkamya karmas)

22-24.  O mind!  Not all trees are wish-fulfilling celestial karpaga trees, nor are all gurus Saduguru.
The one (Dakshinamurty) adept in truth, who appeared below the banyan tree, and also at Kaladi*,
is the one who appeared in Tiruchuzhi.  Because of the appearance there of the one who
possesses wisdom and grace, Tiruchuzhi, also achieved the same fame that was attained by
the banyan tree and Kaladi.

(* Kaladi, the birthplace of Sri Sankara.)

30.  O mind!  Through his gracious glance he enabled us to experience the being-consciousness
-- which cannot be described as 'being like this' -- like an object in our hand.

31.  O mind!  Beginning with the Rig Veda, the core principle of the Vedas, is that Pure Being is
our real nature.  The aim of the Upadesa is to separate us from the body and make us
shine as the luminous Self.

63-65.  O mind!  He said: "They say I am going. Where can I go? I am here!" Where then can He
go, and how?  Though He has given up the perishable body, He will always be present in our
Heart as "that which is", beyond the knowledge of the senses. He who bestowed His grace more
sweetly than one's own mother will from now on also shine as our unseen guide and support!

(Source:  Sri Ramana Darsanam, Sadhu Natanananda. Tr. by
David Godman.)

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1428 on: December 16, 2015, 05:19:46 PM »
Namaskaram generally denotes a physical prostration, but Bhagavan gave it a higher meaning:

Bhagavan: The true meaning of namaskaram is the ego bowing its head and getting destroyed at the feet of the Guru.'

A certain lady, who had a lot of devotion, performed a traditional ritual for worshipping sages whenever she came into Bhagavan's presence ,to have darshan. She would prostrate to Bhagavan, touch his feet and then put the hands that had touched Bhagavan's feet on her eyes. After noticing that she did this daily, Bhagavan made the following remarks:

Only the Supreme Self, which is ever shining in your Heart as the reality, is the Sadguru. The pure awareness, which is shining as the inward illumination 'I', is his gracious feet. The contact with these [inner holy feet] alone can give you true redemption. Joining the eye of reflected consciousness [chidabhasa], which is your sense of individuality (jiva bodha], to those holy feet, which are the real consciousness, is the union of the feet and the head that is the real significance of the word `asi'. As these inner holy feet can be held naturally and unceasingly, hereafter, with an inward-turned mind, cling to that inner awareness that is your own real nature. This alone is the proper way for the removal of bondage and the attainment of the supreme truth.

' Asi', which means 'are' refers to the mahavakya 'tat tvam asi' (you are that). Bhagavan's metaphor indicates that the inner state of being consciousness. is revealed when individuality is merged in the 'holy feet' of pure consciousness.

GVK 35
Om Namo Bagavathe Sri Ramanaya


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1429 on: December 21, 2015, 06:41:41 AM »

Bhagavan Ramana approved all the four paths, karma, yoga, bhakti and jnana.  But He said that
karma should nishkama, without desires.  Bhakti should mature into Atma Samarpana, the total
surrender.  He says in Who am I?  "One who renounces all the desires and stay in Atmanishta is
the greatest bhakta."

Surrender in its mature form is not different from self inquiry. Surrender concludes You are the only
one.  Self Enquiry says, Who am I?  and stay without answer.  Then You becomes I.

Bhagavan Ramana did not of course, recommend raja yoga, since it involves a life time for itself.
Devotees like Suddhananda Bharati and Kavya Kanta Ganapati were great yogis.  But Bhagavan
Ramana said:  Watching the breath is adequate. At the end of the day, every path leads to Jnana.

Arunachala Siva. 


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1430 on: December 22, 2015, 06:28:21 AM »

Bhagavan Ramana's own philosophy [which is of course, the only true philosophy of this universe],
is reflected in His own works.  But in His life, He had to meet several people, with different backgrounds/levels of maturity. Therefore He had to water down the message depending upon
the devotee.  These replies, should not be taken out of context. One cannot pick up one or two
replies and say that this is the final teaching of Bhagavan Ramana.

Take this illustration:-

1. Once Dilip Kumar Roy sang some nice songs and then asked Bhagavan whether the music
alone sung in devotion to god, would confer him liberation.  Bhagavan Ramana said:
"Why not? Pursue this with conviction."

2. To Devaraja Mudaliar, who got excited by some Tiruppugazh songs which were sung in the Hall, asked Bhagavan Ramana, whether singing Tiruppugazh alone could take one to liberation.
Bhagavan Ramana said: "O Mudaliar! Go behind these songs and see the mounam, Silence which
is all pervading." 

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1431 on: December 23, 2015, 07:19:04 AM »

Bhagavan Ramana says in Arunachala Akshara Mana Malai:

I came to You and I  saw You.  But how can I say I saw you.  I cannot say I did not see You either.
Because You are only there?  [I cannot distinguish I and You]!

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1432 on: December 24, 2015, 07:19:30 AM »

Bhagavan Ramana has said:

All answers come from within, the answer is the inquirer.  The Guru outside pushes you in and the Guru
inside pulls you from within.

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1433 on: December 25, 2015, 06:36:11 AM »

Let us look into this second verse of Pancharatnam: 

In the verse, the form of Supreme Self is denoted with reference to the world.  To denote the
distinctness of the world, the word Jagat has not been used.  It has been simply pointed out as 'all
this' and the qualities of a picture are imposed on it.  Therefore, it is clear that the picture of the
Jagat cannot be held without the canvas of the Supreme Self, here Arunachala.  It is in Arunachala
that the world appears, stays and dissolves.  Arunachala is not in the world.  It is in the mind.
The mind is compressed body!  So, the mind is in the Self.  Body is also in the Self.  The world
is also in the Self.  All are in the Self.  Nothing is outside the Self.  Therefore, the Self or Brahman or Arunachala, is the One without a second.  Arunachala is the advaitic principle.

The whole picture, is not only a picture, Chitram, but also a Chitram, a great Wonder.  Moving and
un-moving are both contradictory like darkness and light.  Even then, it is seen that by a special
force, which excels in making the impossible happen, out of the Self or Arunachala, all these rise
and set.  To denote that there is no material cause other than Arunachala or the Self, for the
picture of the universe, Twai, in Thee, the locative is used. 

Even though Arunachala's status acts as a basis and support for the picture of the multitudes
of universe, Arunachala, is the instrumental cause for all that and Arunachala shines
within everything.  This is explained in the second half of the verse.

How can unmoving, dance?  Do not ask such questions.  Once a devotee asked Sri Ramakrishna:
What is God now doing?

Sri Ramakrishna answered:  He is busy pushing a camel into the needle's eye.  Nothing is impossible
for the Self or the God or Arunachala or Brahman.  He is Rachitala Tandava.. The One who moves not
and also dances!  He is infinite.  In Infinity, impossible becomes possible.  Mathematics says: 
That two parallel lines meet at infinity.  The Mathematics does not say, that the two parallel lines
shall never meet!  It will meet at Infinity.  This Infinite Principle is Godhead or Brahman.  There is
one holy name under 108 Holy Names of Bhagavan Ramana.  Om Rachitala Tandavaya Namah.
Salutations to the One who is un-moving and dances!

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1434 on: December 26, 2015, 06:58:46 AM »

Prarabdha is there for a seeker.  The mind/ego acts due to prarabdha.  Even if one goes to the
temple, he does not see and pray to God in the real sense and all along he thinks about the footwear
he had left behind at the entrance of the temple.  Or someone else thinks of the sweet pongal
or puliyodharai that might be distributed soon.  Or someone else looks at the beautiful girl standing
in the opposite row!

What to do?  "It is in ourselves, we are thus and thus" said

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1435 on: December 26, 2015, 07:02:43 AM »

A Saint,  if he is truly a Brahmajnani does not commit any sin.  And he is above sin and merits. 
In stories, we see only a sinner becoming a saint, as in the cases of Valmiki and Arunagiri Natha.
A saint becoming a sinner is almost nil.  There may be a couple of cases, like Sage Viswamitra
who got enamored with Menaka, and started a life of conjugal bliss.  Even here, it is not a sin but
an error, and it caused only a reversal of the merits of his penance.  He had to start the penance
all over again when he realized his error.

Bhagavan Ramana has said:  If someone causes misery for a Jnani, he takes over the sins/errors
if any of the Jnani and Jnani becomes a clean slate.  If on the other hand if a devotee causes happiness
for a Jnani, like giving food, medicines etc., then such a devotee takes over the merits of a Jnani.
Because a Jnani does not need any merits for him.

Arunachala Siva


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1436 on: January 02, 2016, 06:45:38 AM »

The question we need to ask is: what is the most important thing that we need to do with our lives?
Leave aside the duties of supporting and raising a family.  Leave aside the necessity of earning a living.
The most important duty we have to ourselves is to be true to our nature, our "swadharma",
and this at whatever the cost for who does not agree with Thoreau's observation that, "Most men
lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them."

Bhagavan Ramana did not encourage people to renounce the world.  He advised dispassion and
questioning of the assumptions we automatically make ourselves and others.  We lead for the
most part a mechanical existence whether we are aware of it or not.  We take our opinions from
newspapers and TV news channels.  What Bhagavan Ramana advised was discrimination
between what is eternal and what is ephemeral.

We should be wary of an easy escape by thinking that we can do nothing.  Thoreau said:
"As if you could kill time, without injuring eternity!"  Time is precious.  Bhagavan's daily routine
was fixed by the clock.  He would go for days without speaking and yet the Asramam would be
unaffected because there was a discipline and purpose to each activity, which gave the day
momentum and meaning.  In the midst of activity Bhagavan sat in silence and moved as if alone.
There was a solitude to Him which was impervious to the round of events.  He was the Sun
around which the devotees spent their days and thoughts. His constant and unfathomable abidance
in, for want of a better word, what we call the Self, was a source of joy and awe for those who were
open to its manifestation.  The few words He spoke, the small amount of literature He wrote, were all cherished for nothing was wasted.  Each word was meant, each gesture had significance.

One wonders what Thoreau would have made of an encounter with Bhagavan.  One imagines
Thoreau would have found in Bhagavan the answer to his search for meaning and in a face to face
encounter words would have been discarded.  For Thoreau wrote: "Could there a greater miracle
take place than for us to look through each other's eyes for an instant?"

During his last years, Thoreau suffered from incurable tuberculosis, and slowly faded away over
a number of years. But he was writing articles for journals even in bed as an invalid.  When his aunt asked him: "Whether he had made peace with God", Thoreau replied:  "I did not know we had ever quarreled!"

Among his last dying words were:  "Now comes good sailing!"

Let us leave Thoreau the final word:  "It is not what you look at, that matters, it is what you see."

(Source: As indicated in Part 1 of the Power of the Presence.)

Arunachala Siva. 


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1437 on: January 02, 2016, 06:51:59 AM »

W.E. Channing who was a close friend of Thoreau and his first biographer, commented after his
death that, "No man had a better unfinished life."  For what are we to make of a man with great
talents who apparently loafed his way through life?  One of the most memorable statements of Thoreau concerned this very issue, "If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because,
he hears a different drummer. Let his step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away."  [Thoreau's Walden].

Here was a person who in the face of social and peer pressure resolutely 'listened to his inner call' and
fulfilled his 'swadharma', not as someone who visibly accomplished something in the world, but one who walked on the woods and observed the beauty and precision of nature.  "I went to the words because
I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what
it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."  His insights
and lucid descriptions have inspired generations of writers too numerous to list here.

Thoreau's example challenges us to ask what then does it mean to lead a fulfilled life in which all one's
virtues and skills are exercised to the limit of human possibility?  Is it in the accumulation of wealth, social power and respect by one's peers?  Is it in doing good deeds and helping the less fortunate?

So the question here is why so much as how.  How can we lead a simpler life in this day and age with its superfluity of impressions, desires and fears brutally shoved into our faces by inane electronic equipment
in our homes as well as at work?  We do have a choice and it is not necessarily a radical one of
renouncing the world and living in association with an ashram or similar institution.  Our daily life is
composed of small choices over which we have some degree of control.

We do have choice whether or not to switch on a television, we have a choice and can say no when
offered the latest gadget which will make us the envy of our friends.  Even in situations,
where we have no manoeuvre, we still have a choice whether to indulge in despair or anger, or
remain calm.

(Source: As indicated in Part 1 of the Power of the Presence.)

Arunachala Siva. 


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1438 on: January 06, 2016, 07:14:51 AM »

We can believe that the sages when they say: Our fate is simply a bundle of habits.  If you want
to change your fate, --- change your habits.

We now understand that a guru is necessary.  But for many sincere people longing for spiritual
attainment, the dilemma of 'Where is my guru, among so many who are not?'  still remains looming
before them.  Bhagavan Ramana spoke precisely to them by declaring that one should first understand:

"What is a guru?  Guru is God or the Self.  First man prays to God to fulfill his desires.  A time comes
when he will not more pray for the fulfillment of material desires but for God Himself.  God then
appears to him in some form or another, human or non-human to guide him to Himself in answer
to his prayer and according to his needs."  [ S.S. Cohen, Guru Ramana].

A devotee inquired of Bhagavan Ramana.  "Is there any way to meet the appointed guru for each?"

Bhagavan:  "Intense meditation brings it about."  [Talks 135].

Therefore, the search for a guru is only to the search for God.  We need not search in vain for the
place to knock, for it is within. Krishna said: "My glory is within."  Jesus also assures us of the
direction to find the guru as the 'pearl of great price' by saying, "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God
of Heaven and all else shall be added unto you."

This kingdom is within our very Heart, and Bhagavan Ramana offers two ways of approach, and then
clearly instructs us how to unite with it.

"There are two ways.  'Ask yourself --- Who am I?' or 'Submit and I will strike down the ego.'
[Arthur Osborne].

Seeking your true nature in your Heart, discovering it and rejoicing in it by bathing in the bliss of my
jnana swarupa -- this is within."

"Only bhakti sadhana performed continuously with love facilitate easily, in a gradual way,  this union."

"Enter with love the temple that is in your own Heart and experience the bliss of being absorbed
in my swarupa, becoming one with it."  "I myself will command and control a mind that has died
by the sacrifice of the ego."    [Padamalai, Muruganar. Tr. David Godman ].

(Source: Swami Sadasivananda's article in MP 2008-2009)

Arunachala Siva.


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Re: Bhagavan Ramana Teachings
« Reply #1439 on: January 11, 2016, 06:39:03 AM »

Sri Swami Sadasivananda continues...

We cannot manoeurve and progress towards victory over an enemy that outnumber us, in such an
inimical battlefield, called the human mind, without soliciting real help.  Without an expereinced guide as
the General of our forces, we may even court a fatal consequence. By legitimizing and even deifying our
ego's habitual heedless indifference to God, and by labeling its urges as 'inner guru' or
'voice of our Spirit', we inevitably fall into the death trap of pramada.

In the Udyoga Parva of the Mahabharata epic, the blind king Dhritarshtra, who symbolizes the blindness
of the ego, cynically asks Sage Sanatsujata:  "What is death?"  The Sage replies:  "Pramada is death!"
[Saint Poet Arungiri Natha uses the word  marana-pramada].  It should be understood that the definitions
of Sanskrit words are subject to philosophical intentions, and thus are prey to individual bias.  Therefore disagreement and even argument concerning proper meaning and usage are commonplace.   Nevertheless,
the most learned scholars agree that the ancient definition of the word 'pramada' comes from its usage in this scripture.  The word 'mada' means intoxication and when prefixed by 'pra' it becomes intense intoxication to the degree of madness.

Sage Sanatsujata is indicating the presence of 'pramada' brings about a spiritual death.  Thus, the spiritual madness that at first manifests as indifference, inattention, and negligence becomes deadly because it is directed towards God.  This is not to be defined as forgetfulness of the Self, unless one admits to a willful
and belligerent forgetfulness.

The offspring of pramada is 'duragraha', adamant determination to do that which you know you
should never do.

The compound spiritual fracture of being indifferent to God and habitually partaking in negative action with utter disregard for the negative consequences, creates a karmic blood-letting, fatal even to
the strongest constitution.

(Source: As indicated earlier.)

Arunachala Siva.