Author Topic: The Quest - Swami Ramdas and Incantations - M.P. Deepam, 2010.  (Read 1775 times)

Subramanian.R

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 43542
    • View Profile


Swami Ramdas followed the path of devotion.  He was a bhakta who throughout his life adopted the invocation of 'Sri
Ram, Jay Ram, Jay Jaya Ram OM, Sri Rama jaya Rama jay jaya Ram OM.' 

A French journalist and writer, Arnaud Desjardin, came to Tiruvannamalai with his wife and child. They stayed with us.
After a week or so they were proceeding to Anadashram, the abode of Swami Ramdas and Mother Krishnabai.  Arthur
thought that I needed a holiday from the samsara of housekeeping, including the many visitors who came and feeding
some who could not eat food hot with chilies which was all the Asramam provided at that time. It would be good idea if
I went with the Desjardins in their caravan car which was like a little house on wheels.  Swami Ramdas has written a
foreword to Arthur's book The Incredible Sai Baba of Shirdi and invited us to visit him.  On the way Arnaud asked several
people directions because if two agreed then it would be wise to follow.  'To oblige they might tell you anything' he said.

A beaming Swami Ramdas greeted us and put us immediately at our ease.  He seemed completely without guile, a squat
figure past middle age, full of joy.  A devotee from Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry sent a desperate letter to Swami Ramdas
asking for secrecy.   He read it out to all present. To Mother Krishnabai he was literally all in all. A raconteur par excellence he
told two of us sitting in his room some story which made us burst out laughing.  At this moment, Mother Krishnabai came
into the room and told him reproachfully: 'Again you are making them laugh.'  "If not they will be meditating all day', was his
retort.  She epitomized love through service.  Swami Ramdas told us a characteristic story about her.  A poor man came to her
complaining of his abject poverty.  She gave him a cow from the Ashram.  A few days later, he came back complaining that he
had a cow but no shed for her.  So she gave him the materials to build one.  A few days later, he came back complaining that
he had no fodder for the cow.  So she offered him daily fodder.  A few days later, he came again and said: Mataji, now I have
a cow, a shed for her and daily fodder but nobody to buy the milk.'  So it ended up by the Ashram buying his milk.  'We can
always use a little more,' she assured him.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.     

Subramanian.R

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 43542
    • View Profile
Re: The Quest - Swami Ramdas and Incantations - M.P. Deepam, 2010.
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2013, 10:49:22 AM »

continues.....

The invocation of 'Sri Ram jay Ram jay jaya Ram Om..'  was being chanted at the Ashram from morning till night by devotees
in relays.  They were asked by Krishnabai to write it out up to one hundred thousand times or more. 

Swami Ramdas, who always spoke about himself in the third person, describes how he came to Sri Ramana Maharshi.

'One day the kind sadhuram took Ramdas for the darsan of a famous saint of the place Arunachala Hill, Tiruvannamalai,
by name Sri Ramana Maharshi.  His asramam was at the foot of Arunachala.  It was a thatched shed.  Both of us entered
the asramam and prostrated at the holy feet of the saint.  He was young but there was on His face a calmness and in His
large eyes a passionless look of tenderness which cast a spell of peace and joy on all those who came to Him. Ramdas was
informed that the saint knew English so he addressed Him thus: 'Maharaj, there stands before you a humble slave.  Have
pity on him.  His only prayer to you is to give him your blessing.'

The Maharshi turned His beautiful eyes towards Ramdas and looked intensely for a few minutes into his eyes as though
He was pouring into Ramdas His blessing, then nodded His head to say that He had blessed.  A thrill of inexpressible joy
coursed through the frame of Ramdas, his whole body quivering like a leaf in the breeze.  The Maharshi did not speak a word.

Now Ramdas desired to remain in solitude.  From there Ramda went straight to the Arunachala Hill, selected a small cave and
remained there for twenty days, living on a meal of rice boiled without salt. Day and night, he was repeating Ram Mantra
without a break.  After twenty days when Ramdas came out of the cave one morning he saw the light of God-Ram everywhere.,
The entire landscape changed, all was Ram, nothing but Rama wherever Ramdas looked.  Everything was Rama -- vivid,
rapturous, marvelous  -- the trees, the shrubs, the ants, the cows, he cats, the dogs, even inanimate things pulsated  with
the marvelous presence of one Rama.  And Ramdas danced in joy... he rushed at a tree in front of him which he embraced
because it was not a tree but Rama Himself.  A man was passing by. Ramdas ran towards him and embraced him, calling out:
"Rama, O Rama."  The man got scared and bolted out but Ramdas gave chase and dragged him back to his cave.  The man nolted
that Ramdas had not a tooth in his head and so felt a little reassured.  At least the looney would not be able to bite him. Ramdas
said laughing. 

The bliss and joy became permanent.  This experience is called Sahaja Samadhi in which you are one with all because you have
perceived that all is He, the One without a second.                                 
   
About forty years later, Ramdas commented: 'Ramdas went to Sri Ramana Maharshi in a state of complete detachment from
the world.  How intense was his longing.'  He felt thrills of ecstasy in His presence.  The Maharshi made the awakening
permanent in Ramdas.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.

Subramanian.R

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 43542
    • View Profile
Re: The Quest - Swami Ramdas and Incantations - M.P. Deepam, 2010.
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2013, 09:31:24 AM »

continues.....

Swami Ramdas and the devotee used to sit in front hall for an hour or so after the evening meal asking questions or listening
to his lively discourses and reminiscences.  When he was silent for a time, it was enough to put some questions to set him off
again, like pressing a button.  Once he said that after giving up the body he will come back to earth for the sake of his devotees.
'Papa', I asked him, 'did you or did you not say that those who see you or come to you will not be reborn?'  'Ram made me say it',
he replied, 'Then for whom will you come back?' 'How they catch us', he exclaimed after a momentary silence, completely
unruffled and added, 'Saint like to be caught like that.'  He also said in reply to a question on kundalini that if kundalini reaches
the sahasrara (the highest chakra or point in the head) the person is realized.  This reminded me of my own experience of
kundalini.

I was in the midst of packing to return to Tiruvannamalai from Kodaikanal with children.  It was a terrific rush and had to be
done with very little help.  All the household things also had to be packed properly so as not to be broken on our way down to
Kodai Road railway station.  One had be ready for the bus.

It was in the thick of this that it had happened. A sort of lassitude came over me, but most pleasant lassitude.  From the base of
my spine a tingling feeling arose as if a thousand ants were creeping up.  I must have fever, I thought, but a most delightful
fever, so let it be.  All thoughts of packing or leaving or any urgent work just vanished.  I simply rested, whether sitting or lying
down, I do not remember.  The ascent of the ants or tingling continued, stopping at various points along my spine.  I particularly
remember some difficulty at the base of my neck. Then it burst through the crown of the head with the blaze of a million suns -
the splendor of it.  Ecstasy which no words could describe. Only this indescribable feeling of blissful well being;  radiant all-
embracing flaming Consciousness. - I - Am - ness and nothing else.   'So that's it.'  How long did it last?  A second, an eternity?
Then I returned to normal body consciousness and the world emerged again.  I felt like being thrust back into a cage.  At that
time I knew nothing of kundalini.  I had never read about it or practiced it.

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.             

Subramanian.R

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 43542
    • View Profile
Re: The Quest - Swami Ramdas and Incantations - M.P. Deepam, 2010.
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2013, 10:17:17 AM »

continues.....

On my return to Tiruvannamalai, I came across Sir John Woodroffe's  The Serpent Power and there read about the chakras
and verified my astounding experience.  I did not mention it to the Maharshi until sometime later when He asked me to go
through Heinrich Zimmer's German work Der Weg zum Selbst (The Way to the Self) in which he speaks about kundalini from
what seemed to me an intellectual standpoint.  In this connection, I told the Maharshi that my experience was different and
wrote out an account of it.  He perused it very attentively and did not return it to me but gave it to the attendant to file.

Remembering my experience of the merging of Arunachala with Perumal, the sacred hill at Kodaikanal, I asked the Maharshi
whether there was any connection between them.  The reply was in the affirmative.  Arunachala was once worshipped  as
the Hill of Mahavishnu.  They were one.  Arunachala-Siva withdrawn, Perumal a majestic outer manifestation.

When I heard Swami Ramdas  tell his disciples that when kundalini bursts through the sahasrara in the crown of the head
the person is realized.  I spoke with him privately about it afterwards. I told him about my experiences and said that with me
it was only temporary and not a permanent change of state, as my mind not being still enough re-asserted itself.  He asked me
about in great detail and was surprised but obviously convinced and said that it was a sign of grace.  Bhagavan said  that
we are never out of the operation of grace, only we have to come out of the shade.  My experience was probably a culmination
of such practice in a previous incarnation.  With some it would be final if their minds were steady in stillness.  Once or twice
this experience tried to repeat itself after returning to Tiruvannamalai but it never went beyond the throat chakra.  Obviously
I was not detached or passive enough, anticipating a repetition eagerly. 

After our return I was confronted in the Asramam with a powerful looking dog who seemed to know me.  I could not place him
till a slight tremor of his hind leg disclosed that it was my formerly decrepit dog so metamorphosed.  Now he could easily hold
his own among other dogs.                       

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.

Subramanian.R

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 43542
    • View Profile
Re: The Quest - Swami Ramdas and Incantations - M.P. Deepam, 2010.
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2013, 10:41:22 AM »

continues....

Following a spiritual path with absolute faith in the Guru renders life simple, if we do all that life demands of us, that is perform
whatever duties fall to our lot as best we can with detachment as to results.   Outer circumstances conform to our needs
for spiritual development.  Some people need troubles to turn them inwards or make them concentrated; and so they get them.
Others turn away from pleasures and trivialities of life, even from a life of luxury, like Buddha and some saints to seek a
meaning to life, to seek the truth behind appearances.  Progressively as thoughts become more and more concentrated,
they gain  more power.   Sri Bhagavan said that no thought form is ever lost.  Each desire gets fulfilled in due course;  in this
life or a future one; that is how the world revolves as per the Tibetan Wheel of Life.  Fulfillment of desires is not a criterion for
happiness. 

A modern writer-painter Beh Shahn understood that the Wheel of Life is the objectivization of all the Vasanas (predispositions) 
and delusions in the mind of man, more clearly than some scholars in Buddhism.

'In a monastery near the border of Tibet, I found a portrait of myself.  Someone in saffron told me that it was called The Wheel
of Life, the Round of Existence, but it was myself, exact and representational.  There were all the many aspects of myself painted
crude and clear; the pig, the lion, the snake, the cock, all animals, angels, demons, titans, gods and men, all heaven and hell,
all pleasures and pains, all that went to make me and all is as it were within the round of myself, within the wall exactly as I have
found it.  All that I could be was within the enclosure of myself.  All that I could do would only turn the wheel around and around.
There was no way out.  I would go on and on, now up, now down, never ceasing, never changing.  The mechanism was perfect.'

The world would be a better place to live in if human beings were taught to concentrate their destructive energy to subdue
their egocentricity, the root of all trouble.  The aim of spiritual striving [sadhana] is just that.  It is the ego which hides our
divine primordial state.  Dr. Bucke experienced it as a sense of exaltation, an immense joyousness, bliss which was accompanied
by an intellectual illumination the splendor of which he finds impossible to describe.  He comes to the conclusion that the moments
of illumination experienced by all of the great religious leaders, [also mystics and seekers] have much in common.  It is a case of
Cosmic Consciousness, illumination with a sense of immortality.  The soul of man is immortal.  The Cosmos is not a dead matter
but a living Presence. 

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.                 
                 

Subramanian.R

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 43542
    • View Profile
Re: The Quest - Swami Ramdas and Incantations - M.P. Deepam, 2010.
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2013, 01:50:26 PM »

continues.....

There is a state so happy, so glorious that all the rest of life is worthless compared to it, a pearl of great price to buy
which a wise man willingly sells all that he has;  this state can be achieved. Stilling the mind means the same.  'Be still
and know that I AM God or rather that God is I AM.  When Christ said, 'I am the way...' perhaps the original in Aramaic
was I AM is the way. 

Stilling the mind, Sri Bhagavan said, simply means that the mind gets clear of impurities and becomes pure enough to
reflect the Truth, the real Self, the I AM.   This is impossible when the ego is asserive.....

"Where I am there is God; this is the naked truth
Man is in truth God and
God is in truth man
In this break-through I experience that I and God are One."

                    - Meister Eckhart.

In the language of physics Schrodinger defines consciousness as a singular that means the same in all with an illusory plural.
We function only through the divine Light of the Self, Sri Bhagavan says.  It enlivens the inert body like a current passing
through inert electric bulbs and make them glow.  But this Light is clouded by our predispositions, thoughts, and desires and
so on, so it is a mixed light.

God forgets Himself in man and man remembers himself in God.

The Koran:  'There is no God save Him.  Unto Allah is the journeying.'  'In the beginning was Allah and nothingness beside Him
and now He is as He was.'

It struck me like a flash of lightning.  Nobody doubts that he exists.  His existence is beyond a shadow of doubt then.

Who am I?

With the greatest patience Sri Bhagavan would explain and reply to questions of sincere seekers.  He knew who sincerely
wanted to have a doubt cleared and who wanted to engage Him in a discussion for the sake of discussion. The first year
I was in Tiruvannamalai there was also an author of travel books there who liked discussions.  She had prepared a long list
of questions which were handed over to Sri Bhagavan.  After one look, He put them aside without replying.  Then He asked
the attendant to bring him a book from the revolving book case, opened it and sent it to me.  I had not asked any questions
but I had been wondering for several days whether it was right to combine the Atma Vichara with invocation and hesitated
to ask in public.  The book opened on a page which positively fully answered my unasked question.  It started with Saint
Namdev saying: 'The Name permeates the whole universe......' and ended with extolling the invocation.  It was very helpful
at that time.                           
       

contd.,

Arunachala Siva.

Subramanian.R

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 43542
    • View Profile
Re: The Quest - Swami Ramdas and Incantations - M.P. Deepam, 2010.
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2013, 09:54:00 AM »

continues.....

Sri Bhagavan said that in the sphere of speech the mystic sound AUM represents the transcendental aspect.  When
invoking the Name one pointedly, a feeling of devotion arises after a while till one may dissolve in tears.  When the
invocation becomes mental it is contemplation;  that is, when one thought persists to the exclusion of all others.  This
is its object confining oneself to one thought only, then that one thought too vanishes into its source, which is pure
consciousness.  Consciousness is always in the first person. It is I-am-ness on the substratum of which 'you' and 'he'
and all otherness arises.

In Svetasvatara Upanishad it is said: 'Fire is not perceived through present until one stick is rubbed against another.  The
Self is like that fire.'  It is realized in the body by meditation and whatever spiritual practices help one to be one pointed and
to still the mind, whether by invocation, self inquiry, dhyana and so on.  With dervishes it is sacred dancing.  Dilip Kumar Roy
a famous singer, who used to pour out his heart in songs of devotion, asked Sri Bhagavan whether this way was right for him.
Sri Bhagavan assented.

It is said also that continuous chanting of the Name or mantra which has intrinsic power in it creates harmonious vibrations
and makes the mind serene.  Sometimes diseases get eradicated in this way. 

After a while meditation and stilling the mind through the Atma Vichara or letting thoughts pass over one like waves unmoved
by their influence is sufficient.

'The truth is', Sri Bhagavan reminds us, 'that you are always united with the Lord (you are invoking) but you must know this,'

True bhakti (devotion) leads to Jnana (wisdom), Jnana embraces bhakti.  Perseverence and steadfastness in either reveals it.
Even if there is only a spark in the ashes of the heart to start with, slowly, one pointedly, invocation will fan it into flame.  The
heart melts.  Some say the very bones melt.

continued.....

Arunachala Siva.                 
       

Subramanian.R

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 43542
    • View Profile
Re: The Quest - Swami Ramdas and Incantations - M.P. Deepam, 2010.
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2013, 11:14:24 AM »

continues.....

What counts in Sadhana is perseverance and steadfastness.  After a time meditation recalls itself spontaneously.  'Whether
or not results of meditation are obtained is of no importance,'  Sri Bhagavan states.  'The essential is to arrive at stability. It
is the most precious thing that one can gain.  In any case one must trust with confidence in the Divinity, the Guru, and await
His Grace without impatience. ......'  The same rule applies to all spiritual practices.  They are cumulative and the result will
come at the right time when the heat is empty enough to be flooded with Grace. 

One night I had a vision of waiting in an enchanting dream garden, so peaceful that not a leaf stirred.  I was waiting for
someone, Arthur?  (I had been years without any news from him, kept in a concentration camp in Bangkok by the Japanese
during the war).  On the horizon a figure was slowly emerging, a majestic, radiant figure .  Like a bride, I was waiting, my
heart astir, rooted to the spot for him to come.  He was not only Arthur but all mankind condemned in this one wonderful,
radiantly serene figure ruling me with his gracious glance, gentle, more loving than words could say.

Arunachala-Siva-Ramana, formless, all pervading, able to take any shape to lead one back to Itself abiding in all hearts.

One day on the Hill after a lengthy absence:

'Softly, gently, caressingly
The Mountain breeze surrounds me
In an embrace of greeting
Touches my head, my face,
Long have you been in coming
The heart stirs
Oh, My Beloved.'

concluded.

Arunachala Siva.