Dr. C. Kunhan Raja was Director of Adyar Library, Theosophical Society, Madras.
While I was in the Hall during the one day I was in the Ashram, I took my seat along with others. I sat for hours together both in the forenoon and in the afternoon. Except for the first few words of greetings and my reply thereto, I did not talk at all. Though there was no actual talk between us, there was an unbroken communion.
What produced on me a great impression is the repose, the unruffled calmness that prevailed in the place as a result of the presence of the Maharshi. He seldom spoke. There was always a look of serene joy in his face; sometimes it glowed up into a lustre of bliss; at times I noticed that he rose into a state of samadhi or trance. But that look of blissful peace was always there. I cannot say he was unaware of his surroundings; indeed, he was always in the fullness of unbroken awareness, but the surroundings made no fluctuations in him. When people prostrated themselves before him or when they offered presents, there was the same look on his face. The mode of salutation and the mode of approach made no difference to him. To him, it was one, continuous state of serene peace and joy – ananda.
While he appears quite unconcerned with things around him, he was not only attentive but also alert in correcting pronunciation in the recitation of Tamil verses.
The very fact that the Maharshi makes enquiries about the visitors, looks into his correspondence, pays attention to the cleanliness and tidiness ofhis environment, keeps certain programmes in his daily routine and sticks to them with punctuality, shows that to him this physical world is an integral part of the Reality.
The Maharshi is a linguist, knowing, besides his Tamil in which he is a great author and poet, English, Sanskrit, Telugu and Malayalam. He spoke the three South Indian languages with perfect ease.
It was a great privilege for me to visit the Ashram. Till now I had only read about the Maharshis in the puranas. The presence of a Maharshi in this world at a time when there is utter anarchy in science, must be an eye-opener for the scientists, in that they will think of expanding the scope of science so as to include the truth of the scientist himself, instead of confining science to what the scientist is aware of as external, objective reality.1
1. Refer Paul Brunton: “The most astounding discoveries will come when our scientists turn away for a while from metal and stone and electricity to examine and explore the nature of self within the laboratory of man. Scientists already know that the real seeing agent in sight is not the eye but the mind that uses that organ. They have yet to discover what it is that works the mind. And when they do that they will come into contact with the real Self of man, the being out of whom both mind and body derive their existence and maintain their lives.” A Message from Arunachala (1936).