Reminiscences of Ramana Maharshi – Saroja Krishnan

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Reminiscences of Ramana Maharshi – Saroja KrishnanBack


Saroja Krishnan’s family had a close relationship with the Ashram. Her uncle, Rajagopala Iyer was one of the attendants of Sri Ramana. He had witnessed the will executed by Sri Ramana in 1938, in respect of Sri Ramanasramam.

When I was young I used to sit in the hall, watching with interest the happenings around me. One day, Bhagavan’s eyes turned to me and rested there; my eyes were locked in his, unable to turn away. How does one describe the indescribable? Dark and wide, cool and bright, melting with mercy and kindness, those heavenly orbs seemed to expand and fill the room and all space, engulfing me. Looking back, I understand that this was his nayana diksha [Initiation by look].

When fifteen or sixteen, I was undergoing mental suffering. My husband was not in town. In despair, I tried to put an end to my life, but did not succeed. My uncle Rajagopala Iyer chanced to take the family to the Ashram. Even here my agony continued. The time came for us to return home. One by one, all members of the family prostrated and took Bhagavan’s leave. When I raised my head after prostration, my eyes fell on Bhagavan’s feet, placed on a low stool in front of his sofa. My hands shot forward as if propelled by some powerful force and I grasped those feet only for a very short time. A fount of happiness seemed to burst forth from somewhere deep within me. Wave after wave of bliss washed over me and I seemed to be floating in it. I was oblivious of everything else. Thoughts of Bhagavan and the surging happiness absorbed every nook and corner of my being. Backat home, even though the old situation continued, nothing touched me. In my lifetime I have never experienced anything remotely resembling it.

Backto Tiruvannamalai with my mother for delivery, I did not stop the daily practice of going round Bhagavan’s hall 108 times, carrying the heavy load of advanced pregnancy. Medical facilities in Tiruvannamalai were rather inadequate. So my mother was anxious and decided to take Bhagavan’s advice. With this in mind she was entering the hall, when she heard Bhagavan telling someone firmly and loudly, “No, no, not here.” On hearing this my mother immediately decided to take me to Vellore. Bhagavan’s advice was received, even though nothing was asked!

I was in the third day of my dry labour, without making much progress. The third night the doctors decided to do a Caesarean, often very risky in pre-penicillin days. My mother and others were in great distress on hearing this and sent off a telegram of appeal to the Ashram. Bhagavan read the telegram in Tiruvannamalai and in Vellore my son Ramana Kumar was born, by normal delivery. The doctors were confounded that a normal delivery should occur in such a difficult situation without recourse to even the forceps!

Once, Bhagavan was coming down the hill after his morning stroll. Suddenly, a dove fell down at his feet. Bhagavan bent down and picking it up, cradled it in his arms and gently soothed it by passing his hand lightly over its back. Then he turned round to see how the bird happened to fall. A young hunter was hesitantly standing a little distance away with a catapult in hand. Bhagavan remarked in quiet voice, “This is the poor boy’s food, but two annas [one eighth of a rupee] would do to buy something to satisfy his hunger.” The amount was paid immediately to the boy by my uncle.

The dove lay still and dazed in Bhagavan’s arms. It did not move ever after Bhagavan came Backto the hall. “A few drops of green grapes juice applied on its head, would cure him.” As Bhagavan was saying this, an out-station devotee entered the hall with a few bunches of green grapes, as an offering to Bhagavan. “Hey, look, we are just talking about green grapes and here they are!” exclaimed Bhagavan. Immediately, a few grapes were squeezed on the dove’s head. In a short while, the bird stirred, raised its head and looked around. After a few tentative steps, it fluttered it wings and flew away. Who is the vet who taught Bhagavan this treatment? I wondered.

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