Sayings by Sri Ramakrishna – Chapter 20 GLIMPSES OF THE MASTER’S EXPERIENCES IN HIS OWN WORDS

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CHAPTER XX

GLIMPSES OF THE MASTER’S EXPERIENCES IN HIS OWN WORDS

[Experiences of early days – Tantric and other Sadhanas – Experience of the Nirvikalpa state – The

Master s perpetual God-consciousness – How the Master prayed – The Divine in &ood and evil alike – The Master on his illness – The Master a combination of humanity and Divinity.}

EXPERIENCES OF EARLY DAYS

972. In his younger days, when taken to task by his elder brother for neglecting his studies, the Master said in reply: ” Brother, what shall I do with a mere bread-winning education? I would rather acquire that wisdom which would illumine my heart – that wisdom gaining which one felt satisfied for ever.”

973. In the early days of his spiritual-life, the Master’s nephew, Hriday, noticed him meditating at night in the seclusion of a jungle, quite naked, and without even the sacred thread. On being asked how nudeness was connected with meditation, the Master replied: ” One should meditate free from all bondages and fetters. From his-very birth man has been fettered by the eightfold shackle of hatred, shame, family pride, social conventionalities, fear, prestige, pride of caste and egotism. Even the sacred thread is a fetter – it is a token of egotism and makes one feel that one is a Brahmin and is superior to all. So, when one meditates on the Divine Mother, one should make oneself free by throwing aside all these shackles.”

974. When the great yearning for God had developed in him, the Master found life unbearable without His vision. He was therefore about to put an end to his life, when the blessed vision dawned on him suddenly. Describing it the Master said : ” The room with all its doors and windows, the temple and everything around me, vanished from sight. I felt as if nothing existed, and in their stead I perceived a boundless effulgent ocean of intelligence. Whichever side I turned my eyes, I saw from all quarters huge waves of that shining ocean rushing towards me, and in a short while, they all came, and falling upon me, engulfed me completely. Thus getting suffocated under them, I lost my ordinary consciousness and fell down. Referring to the same experience he said on another occasion: “I fell down on the floor of the room, completely lost in the ecstasy of the vision. I was perfectly unconscious as to what happenened outside, and also how that day and the next passed. The one thing which I was internally conscious of was that through my soul was rolling an ocean of ineffable joy, the like of which I had no experience before. At the same time I was also conscious, to the inner core of my being, of the hallowed presence of the Divine Mother.”

975. But this experience of God did not bring on the Master a state of perpetual God-consciousness.

He had to pass through periods of dryness, and a yearning for the constant vision of the Divine therefore goaded him on to pray unceasingly to the Divine Mother with bitter tears of grief and loud cries. Describing the state of his mind in that period, the Master said : ” If a concourse of people happened to gather round me (attracted by loud cries and prayers) they appeared to me like shadows or so many figures drawn in a picture – so unreal and shadowy they appeared – and therefore I never used to feel any kind of shame or shyness before them. But whenever I used to lose my external consciousness through an unbearable pang of the heart, the next moment I always used to behold the radiant spiritual form of the Mother. I used to see the form sometimes laughing, sometimes talking with me, and sometimes advising and consoling me.

976. Describing the days he passed in intense yearning for God, the Master said: ” As I was perfectly unmindful of cleaning the body at that time, the hairs grew long and got matted of themselves, being smeared with dirt and dust. When I used to sit in meditation, the body used to become stiff and motionless like a stock through intense concentration of mind, and birds, taking it to be an inert substance, came freely, perched on the head, and pecked into the matted hair in search of food. Sometimes I used to feel so intensely the pangs of separation from God, that in great bitterness I rubbed my face on earth; often it used to get lacerated and bleed. And in meditation, prayer and other devotional practices, the day used to fly away so quickly that I was not conscious of it. At dusk, when the approach of night was announced by the ringing of bells and the blowing of conchs from the temple, I used to be reminded that the day had passed and the night had set in. With this consciousness a frenzy of despair would seize my soul, and I would throw myself on the ground and rub my face on it, crying loudly, ‘ Mother, a day has passed; still Thou hast not appeared before me ! A gnawing anguish used to torment my soul, and those who saw me like that, writhing in agony, thought that I was suffering from colic pain.”

977. Soon after the Master s return to Dakshineswar after his marriage, his old divine madness seized him again. About the state of his mind in those days he said: ” The ordinary man would have died, if he were to experience even a fourth of the spiritual metamorphosis that my body and mind underwent.

And of this body too (meaning himself) the same would have been the fate ; but fortunately the major portion of my days was passed in ecstatic oblivion of the Mother’s divine vision. Henceforth for six long years not a wink of sleep ever visited my eyes, and the eyelids would never close, try though I might. All sense of time vanished from me, and the body idea was totally obliterated. A terrible fear would seize me at the slightest reversion of the mind from the Mother to the body. Often the fear came whether I had really run mad. 1 would stand before my image in a mirror, and when on poking my eyes I would find them insensitive, I would burst into tears in terror, and pray to the Mother; ‘O Mother, is

it that as a result of all my prayers and absolute reliance on Thee, Thou hast brought on me an incurable disease ? But next, the alternating thought would come : ‘ O Mother, whatever fate may overtake my bodyr do Thou never forsake me 1 Vouchsafe unto me Thy vision and Thy mercy! O Mother, have I not taken complete shelter at Thy hallowed feet ? Except Thee, O Mother, I have no other refuge ! ‘ And thus praying tearfully, my mind would be filled with a strange enthusiasm, creating an unbounded disgust for the body, and would lose itself in the comfort of the Mothers Divine vision and consoling, words.”

978. The Master s pure mind was itself his first and most important teacher. About this the Master said: ” Whenever necessity arose, a young Sannyasin from inside my body, in appearance exactly like myself, would come out and teach me everything. When he came out in this way, sometimes I would retain a little consciousness of external objects and at other times, I would lose all consciousness of the outside world except for the awareness of his presence and doings. When he re-entered the body, I would again become aware of the external world. What I had heard from him before, the same teachings I heard from Brahmani, Totapuri, and others. What I learnt from him before, the same I learnt from these teachers later.”

TANTRIC AND OTHER SADHANAS

979. Referring to his Tantrik Sadhana under the guidance of Bhairavi Brahmani the Master said: ” The Brahmani would go during the day to places far away from Dakshineswar and collect the various rare things mentioned in the Tantric scriptures as requisites of Sadhana. At nightfall she would ask me to go to one of the seats. I would go, and after performing the worship of the Mother Kali, I would begin to meditate according to her directions. I could hardly tell my beads, for as soon as I began to do so I was always overwhelmed with divine fervour and fell into deep Samadhi. I cannot now relate the varieties of wonderful visions I used to have. They followed each other in quick succession, and the effects of those practices I could feel most tangibly. The Brahman i guided me through all the exercises mentioned in the sixty-four principal Tantric works. Most of these are extremely difficult Sadhanas, which generally cause many a devotee to slip his foot and sink into moral degradation. But the infinite grace of the Mother carried me through them unscathed.”

980. Describing his experience of the awakening of Kundalini, the Master said : M When I realised this state (the state of God-consciousness), one looking exactly like me came and thoroughly shook my Ida, Pingala and Sushumna nerves. He licked the ‘ lotuses’ of the six f centres’ with his tongue, and the drooping lotuses at once turned their faces upwards. And at last the Sahasrara lotus’ became full-bloomed.”

981. The Master used to describe his mentality when he practised Islamic Sadhanas, as follows: “Then I used to repeat the name of Allah, wear my cloth in the fashion of the Mohammedans, and recite the Namaz regularly. All Hindu ideas being wholly banished from the mind, not only did I not salute the Hindu Gods, but I had no inclination even for visiting them. After passing three days in that way, I realised the goal of that form of devotion.”

982. I had to practise the various religions once, Hinduism, Islam and Christianity, and I have walked the paths of the different sects of Hinduism again – the Sakta, the Vaishnava, the Vedantic and others. And I have found that it is the same God towards Whom all are travelling, only they are coming through diverse ways.

983. The Master experienced how a man died when he witnessed the death of his beloved nephew, Akshay. Describing his experience, the Master said: “Akshay died before my very eyes. But it did not affect me in the least I stood by and watched how a man died. It was like a sword taken out from the scabbard. The sword remained as it was, only the scabbard was left behind. I enjoyed the scene, and laughed and danced and sang over it. They removed the body and cremated it. But next day as I stood there (pointing to the south-eastern verandah of his room). JI felt a racking pain for the loss of Akshay, as if somebody was squeezing my heart like a wet towel. I wondered and thought that Mother was teaching me a lesson. I was not much concerned with the body even – much less with a nephew. But if such was my pain at his bereavement, how much more must be the grief of the householders at the loss of their near and dear ones.”

EXPERIENCE OF NIRV1KALPA STATE

984. Describing his experience of Nirvikalpa Samadhi, the Master said: “After the initiation, “the naked one l began to teach me the various conclusions of the Adf vaita Vedanta and asked me to withdraw the mind completely from all objects and dive into the Atman. But in spite of all my attempts I could not cross the realm of name and form and bring my mind to the unconditioned state. I had no difficulty in withdrawing the mind from all objects except one, and this was the all-too-familiar form of the Blissful Mother – radiant and of the essence of Pure Consciousness – which appeared before me as a living reality and would not allow me to pass beyond the realm of name and form. Again and again I tried to concentrate my mind upon the Advaita teaching but every time the Mother’s form stood in my way. In despair I said to ‘the naked one , It is hopeless. I cannot raise my mind to the unconditioned state and come face to face with the Atman. He grew excited and sharply said, What! You can t do it! But you have to.’ He cast his eyes around for something, and finding a piece of glass, took it up, and pressing its point between my eyebrows, said, Concentrate your mind on this point. Then with a stern determination I again sat to meditate, and as soon as the gracious form of the Divine Mother appeared before me, I used my discrimination as a sword and with it severed it into two. There remained no more obstruction to my mind, which at once soared beyond the relative plane, and I lost myself in Samadhi.”

985. I was for six months in that state of Nirvikalpa from which ordinary mortals cannot return. For after 1 This was the appellation which Sri Ramakrishna, out of respect, invariably used for his Guru. who. being a Naga Sannyasin, generally went about naked twenty-one days the body drops off like a withered leaf. Days and nights succeeded one another perfectly unnoticed. Flies would enter the mouth and nostrils just as in the case of a corpse without producing any sensation. Hairs became all matted with dust. Sometimes even Natures calls were answered unawares. Hardly would the body have survived this state but for a Sadhu who happened to come at this time. He at once recognised my condition, and also understood that the Mother had yet to do many things through this body – that many persons would be benefited if it were preserved. So at meal time he used to fetch some food and try to bring me to external consciousness by administering a good beating to the body. As soon as traces of consciousness were perceived, he would thrust the food into the mouth. In this way a few morsels would be swallowed on some days; on other days, not even that. Full six months were thus passed. Later, after some days, stay in this state, I came to hear the Mother’s command ” Remain on the threshold of relative consciousness (Bhava-mukha) for the instruction of mankind.” Then appeared blood dysentery. There was acute writhing pain in the intestines. Through this suffering for six months the normal body consciousness slowly reappeared. Or else every now and then the mind would, of its own accord, soar to the Nirvikalpa state.

986. The natural tendency of this (my) mind is upwards (towards the Nirvikalpa state). Once that state is reached, it does not like to come down. For your sake I drag it down perforce. Downward pull is not strong enough without a lower desire. So I create some trifling desires, such as, for instance, for smoking, for drinking water, for tasting a particular dish, or for seeing a.particular person, and repeatedly suggest them to my mind. Then alone the mind slowly comes down (to the body). Again, while coming down, it may run Backupward. Again it has to be dragged down through such desires.

987. The Master would go into the highest state of Nirvikalpa Samadhi by uttering the word Tat (That) only, out of the formula, Om Tat Sat. Sat (existence) might bring a remote suggestion of its opposite, ‘ Asat , and even the most sacred symbol ‘ Om’ seemed to fall short of the mark. But when he uttered ‘Tat (That), all ideas of relativity would be completely effaced from his consciousness ; all discrimination between existence and non-existence would cease; he would become merged in the realisation of the One that transcends all limitations.

988. Q. Do you have, Sir, the slightest idea of ego-when you are merged in Samadhi ?

A. Yes, usually a little ego remains. It is like the particle of gold leaf, which, if rubbed on a lump of gold, does not wear itself off completely. All outward consciousness disappears, but the Lord keeps a little ego to let me enjoy Him.

Sometimes, however, He drives away even that little. This is the highest Samadhi. No one can say what that state is – it is the absolute transformation of one’s own self into His. The doll made of salt plunged into the ocean to measure its depth. But no sooner did it touch the water than it was dissolved. Then who could come up to give information as to how deep the ocean was I”

THE MASTER’S PERPETUAL GOD-CONSCIOUSNESS

989. The Master was questioned: M Do you believe in God, Sir?”

” Yes,” the Master replied.

” Can you prove it, Sir ? ” – ” Yes.”

“How?” – “Because I see Him just as I see you here, only very much more intensely.”

990. A logician once asked the Master, ” What are subject, object and knowledge?”

The Master replied, “Good man, I do not know all these niceties of scholastic learning; I know only the Self in me and my Divine Mother.

991. Hriday used to say after seeing the condition of my body: “I have never seen so much spirituality and illumination in such a frail state of body!” But although my body was weak, still I never stopped talking of God with others. At one time, I remember, I was reduced to a skeleton, yet I would hold conversations on spiritual subjects for hours, without feeling that I had a body.

HOW THE MASTER PRAYED

992. I used to pray to the Divine Mother in this way: ” O Mother, Who art the embodiment of bliss, Thou must reveal Thyself to me.” And sometimes I would pray: ” O Lord of the meek I O Lord of the humble! Am I outside Thy universe? I have neither knowledge, nor devotion, nor the merit of austerities. I know nothing. O Lord, in Thy infinite mercy Thou must vouchsafe Thy vision to me.”

993. O Mother Divine ! I want no honour from men, I want no pleasures of the flesh, only let my soul flow into Thee as the permanent confluence of the Ganges and the Jumna. Mother, I am without Bhakti, without Yoga, I am poor and friendless, and I want no one s praise.; only let my mind always dwell at Thy lotus feet.

994. Mother, I am the Yantra (the instrument), Thou art the Yantri (the mover); I am the room, Thou art the tenant; I am the sheath, Thou art the sword; I am the chariot, Thou art the charioteer. I do as Thou makest me do; I speak as Thou makest me speak; I behave as Thou within me behavest; not ‘ I , not ‘ I but Thou’.

995. One is sure to realise God, if only one has great devotion to truth. On the contrary, if one has no regard for truth, everything of his will be destroyed gradually. After attaining to this state (of

God-realisation), I told Mother, taking flowers in my hand, ” O Mother, here take BackThy1 knowledge and Thy ignorance, Thy purity and Thy impurity, Thy good and also Thy bad, Thy virtue and Thy sin ; give me only pure Bhakti, Mother.” But when I said all these to Mother, I could not say, Take BackThy truth and untruth.” All I could return Backto Mother, but not truth.

1.Here ‘Thy’ means of ‘Thy creation’.

THE DIVINE IN GOOD AND EVIL ALIKE

996. With God-realisation all Karma drops off. It was thus that my ceremonial worship came to an end I used to perform worship in the Kali temple. One day

it was suddenly revealed that everything was Chinmaya – Pure Spirit. The utensils of worship, altar, door-way – all was Spirit. Men, beasts, birds, everyone was Chinmaya. And like one mad, I began to rain flowers all around. Whatever I saw I worshipped.

One day, in course of Siva-worship, I was putting the Vajra on the Siva-lingam, when came the revelation that the universe itself is Siva. I did not reason it out, but it came to me in a flash. That day ended my worship of Siva in His images. I was once plucking flowers when suddenly it was revealed that each flower plant was a nosegay adorning the universal form of God. That was my last flower-gathering.

997. I had once a vision: I felt that One Substance had taken the form of the cosmos with all living creatures, which resembled a house of wax with men, animals, gardens, roads and the rest, all made of wax and nothing but wax.

998. Do you know what I see ? I see Him as All I Men and other creatures appear as veritable skin-bound figures, shaking the head and moving the hands and feet, but the Lord is within.

999. She has placed me in the state of a Bhakta – of a Vijnani. Hence it is that I can joke and make fun with Rakhal and others. Had I been in the condition of a Jnani, that would not have been possible. In this condition I see that Mother Herself has become all this. I see Her everywhere. In the Kali temple I found that Mother has become even the wicked – even the brother of the Bhagavat Pandit. Try though I might, I failed to rebuke Randal’s mother. I found she was Mother in another form. It is because I find the Mother in the maidens that I worship them. My wife strokes my feet, but I salute her afterwards. Because I am placed in such a condition, I have to return your salutes. You see, I cannot ignore even a wicked man. A Tulsi leaf, however dry or small, can be offered to the Deity.

1000. Do you know how I see? Trees, plants, men, animals, grass – these and all other things I see as different coverings like pillow cases, some made of fine cotton and others of coarser stuff, some round in shape and others square. But within all these pillow cases there is one and the same substance, cotton. In the same way all the objects of the world are stuffed with the unconditioned Sachchidananda. I feel as if the Mother has wrapped Herself in different clothes, and is peeping out from them. I was once in a state in which I used to perceive this every instant. Without understanding this state of mine, people came to pacify me. The mother of Ramlal wept. Looking at her, I felt that the Mother Who is in the temple has Herself come dressed as she. I rolled with laughter and said: ” How beautifully you have dressed.” One day I was meditating on the Divine Mother within the Kali temple. I found it impossible to visualise Her form. Sometime after I saw Her looking up from the side of the pot used for worship. She was in appearance like a prostitute named Ramani who comes to the Ghat for her bath. I laughed in wonder and said : ” Very good 1 You like to be Ramani to-day. Accept then to-day’s worship in that form.” In this way the Mother taught me, ” Even the prostitute is I Myself. There is nothing except Myself Another day while going in a carriage through Mechua Bazaar, I saw the Mother as a woman out to tempt people, dressed fashionably, with vermilion mark on the forhead and wig on head, and smoking from a Hookah. Wondering I asked whether the Mother had chosen to take this form also, and prostrated before Her.

1001. I do see the Supreme Being as the veritable Reality with my very eyes ! Why then should I reason ? I do actually see that it is the Absolute Who has become all things around us; it is He who appears as the finite soul and the phenomenal world ! One must have an awakening of the spirit within to see this reality. As long as one is unable to see Him as the one reality, one must reason or discriminate, saying, ” Not this; Not this.” Of course, it would not do for one merely to say, ” I have seen beyond the possibility of a doubt that it is He Who has become all!” Mere saying is not enough. By the Lord’s grace the spirit must be quickened. Spiritual awakening is followed by Samadhi. In this state one forgets that one has a body; one loses all attachment to the things of the world, i.e..’ woman and gold ‘ ; one likes no other words than those relating to God; one is sorely troubled if called upon to listen to worldly matters. The spirit within being awakened, the next step is the realisation of the Universal Spirit. It is the spirit that can realise the Spirit.

1002. Many years ago Vaishnavacharan told me that one attains perfect Knowledge only when one sees God in man. Now I see that it is He Who is moving about in different forms, now as an honest man, now as a cheat and again as a villain. So I say, ” Narayana in the form of an honest man, Narayana in the form of a swindler, Narayana in the form of a villain, Narayana in the form of a lewd person.’ Now the problem is how I can entertain all. I wish to feed everyone. Therefore I keep one at a time with me and entertain him.

1003. When I look on a woman of character belonging to a respectable family, I see in her the Divine Mother arrayed in the modest garb of a chaste lady; and again when I look upon the public women of the city, sitting in their open verandahs arrayed in the garb of immodesty and shamelessness, I see in them the same Divine Mother sporting in a different way.

1004. In God there are both Vidya and Avidya. The Vidya Maya takes man towards God, whereas the Avidya Maya entices him away from the path of the Lord. Knowledge, devotion, dispassion, compassion – all these are the expressions of the Vidya Maya; only with their help can one reach God.

But if you ascend one step higher, you attain Brahma-jnana. In this state I feel – I actually see – ^-that He has become all. There is nothing to reject or to accept ! It becomes impossible for me to get angry with anybody.

Once while going in a carriage, I happened to see two courtesans standing on a balcooy. But I actually saw in them the Divine Mother, and made salutations.

When this state (of consciousness) dawned in me, I could not worship or offer anything to the Mother Kali (at the Dakshineswar Temple). At that, the temple manager began to abuse me. But I only laughed at his abuse without feeling offended in the least.

1005. Describing a vision, which revealed to him, the real nature of the world, the Master said : ” Do you know what I saw now? A Divine vision – the vision of the Divine Mother! She appeared with a child in the womb, which She brought forth and swallowed up the next instant. And as much of it as went into Her mouth became void ! She showed me that all is Void. And She said as it were, ‘Come confusion ! come confusion !

THE MASTER ON HIS ILLNESS

1006. Pandit Sasadhar, seeing the Master ill1 asked him: ” Why do you not concentrate your mind upon the diseased part and thus cure yourself ? ‘

The Master: How can I fix my mind, which I have dedicated to God, upon this wretched ca£e of flesh and blood?

Sasadhar: Why do you not pray to the Divine Mother for the cure of your illness ?

The Master: When I think of my Mother, the physical body vanishes, and I am entirely out of it. So it is impossible for me to pray for anything concerning the body;

1007. When the Master was badly ill, and could even hardly speak or swallow any food, he exclaimed: ” I am now speaking and eating through so many mouths. I am the Soul of all the souls, I have infinite mouths. I am the 1 In his last days he was suffering from the cancer of the throat.

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Infinite Spirit covered by a human skin which has a wound somewhere in the throat. When the body is ill, that illness reacts upon the mind. When one is scalded by hot water one says, ‘ This water has injured me, but in truth what injures is the heat, and not the water. All pain is in the body, all disease is in the body, but the Spirit is above pain and is beyond the reach of disease.

1008. I told the Mother that on account of this (pointing to his diseased throat) I could not swallow anything, and prayed to Her that I might be enabled to eat a little food. But the Mother, pointing to you all, said, “Why? Here you are eating with so many mouths 1 ” I was utterly abashed and I could not speak a word more.

1009. The Mother has brought this illness on me in order to teach man how to think of the Spirit and how to live in God-consciousness, even when there is extreme pain in the body. When the body is suffering from excruciating pain and starvation, and when it is beyond all human power to give any relief, even then the Mother shows me that Spirit is the master of the body. My Divine Mother has brought this illness upon this body to convince the sceptics that the Atman is divine, that God-consciousness is truef that when one reaches perfection, freedom from all bondages is attained.

1010. When, during his last illness, the Master was earnestly requested by his disciples to pray to the Lord to cure his illness and retain his body in the world for sometime more, at least for their sake he said: ” Well, nothing comes of my speaking to the Lord about it. His will be done. I now see that my Divine Mother and I have become one, once for all. Radha said to Krishna, O beloved, abide Thou within my heart, and appear not any longer in Thy human form.’ But She soon yearned to see Krishna in human form. Her heart struggled and panted for the Beloved. But the Lord’s will must be done, and Krishna did not appear in human form for a long time.

THE MASTER. A COMBINATION OF HUMANITY AND DIVINITY

1011. Indeed, there are three words which prick me to the core: (1) Guru (spiritual preceptor), (2)

Karta (doer of action), and (3) Baba (father). God is the only Guru. My Divine Mother is the sole doer of actions, I am only an instrument in Her hands. I feel myself always to be Her child.

1012. About his meeting with a celebrated Pandit, the Master said : ” When I heard that the Pandit was coming to see me, I got frightened. For I am not even conscious of the cloth I am wearing. I had no idea of what I should reply when he talked with me. To the Mother I said: Apart from Thee I do not know anything – these scriptures and other matters.’ So I told the people here: You all sit here. I shall feel encouraged by your presence.’ When the Pandit actually came, I still continued to have a little fear. I sat quiet, gazing at him and listening to him. Just then I saw the Mother revealing to me the whole of the Pandit’s mind. What is the good of reading the scriptures if one has no discrimination and dispassion ? There (pointing to his own body) I felt something creeping up to the head. All my fear was gone and I ceased to be conscious of

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myself. I raised my face, and words began to flow from my mouth. I felt as if somebody was replenishing my thoughts as they were spoken out. At Kamarpukur when people measured grain, one person would be pushing the grain forward as another measured it. It was like that. I myself did not know what all I spoke. When I regained my external consciousness a little, I saw the Pandit weeping and his body wet with tears. I experienced such states now and then. Keshab sent me word that he would take me on a cruise along the Ganges, and that a European missionary and tourist named Mr. Cook would be accompanying us. Hearing this, I began to go to the casuarina tree again and again (i.e, answer the calls of Nature out of nervousness). Afterwards they came, and I got into the steamer.

Soon a change came over me. What all did I say then! All these people (pointing to the devotees) said that I gave excellent instructions. But I knew nothing about that.”

1013. The one who is within me is doing all this through me. At times I used to get the mood of Godhood – I would never be pacified unless worshipped. I am the instrument and He is the wielder. I do as He makes me do, I speak as He makes me speak.

1014. Girish Chandra Ghosh, even after having given his ‘power-of-attorney’ to the Master, felt restless thinking over the power of the evil tendencies acquired by him in his past life. At this the Master said : You fellow, is it a water snake that has caught you ? No, it is a poisonous one. Even if you go home running, you will have to die. Don’t you see that? When a water snake catches a frog, it dies only after croaking many times. Sometimes it may escape, too. But if it is a poisonous snake, the frog dies with one or two croaks. Even if it escapes, it hops a short distance and dies in its hole. The same is the case with one who has come here.

1 This is a term which the Master was wont to use to express complete self-surrender

1015. One day, while a disciple was shampooing his feet, the Master said referring to this act of

service, This has a deep significance. Then placing his hand on his own heart, he said, ” If there is anything (Divine) in it, then (by this act of service) ignorance and Avidya will vanish once for all.” And then he added with a serious look: ” There is no outsider here. That day I had a vision. Harish was near me then. I saw Sachchidananda coming out of the sheath (i.e., his body). Having come out He said: ‘ I incarnate in every age.’ I thought I was delirious. So I kept quiet. Then I heard that He was even saying: Even Chaitanya worshipped Sakti.

1016. During his illness the Master said to his devotees one day: ” Here (i.e., within himself) there are two persons. One is the Divine Mother – the other person is Her devotee. It is the latter who is now taken ill … The Lord comes with His disciples as a Divine Incarnation. He takes a human body. His disciples go Backwith Him to the Divine Mother. A band of Bauls (singing mendicants) comes into a house all on a sudden. They chant. the ‘ name of the Lord and dance with joy. That done, they leave the house at once. As abrupt in going as in coming ! And the people know them not I”

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1017. I realise that the three are of the same substance – the block for sacrifice, the victim to be sacrificed, and he who immolates the victim of the sacrifice.

1018. In his last days, while lying seriously ill, the Master asked Narendra : ” Well, what do you think is the nature of my feelings? “

Narendra: Why, Sir, you are everything I A hero who has cut his way to the Reality with the sword of discrimination and with a strength which the world cannot give ! You have the feeling of a Sakhi (lady friend) too – Love unspeakable, the ecstasy of Divine love which is called up by the Divine Lover alone. You are a hero, Sakhrand everything else in your yearning for the Lord.

The Master had all his feelings stirred up. He laid his hands upon the heart and said, addressing Narendra and other disciples: “I see – I realise – that all things, every conceivable thing – comes out of this !

1019. A couple of days before the Master s passing away, when six months of suffering from the dreadful disease of cancer in the throat had already reduced him to a mere skeleton, Narendra, the disciple (the future Swami Vivekananda), felt a curious inclination to test the Master s oft-repeated assertion of his being an Incarnation. So he said to himself: ” If in the midst of this dreadful physical pain he can declare his Godhead, then I shall believe him to be true.” Strange to say, the moment this thought flashed in his mind, the Master summoned all his energy and said distinctly: ” He who was Rama and Krishna is now Ramakrishna in this body – but not in your Vedantic sense.’

He Who is our protector, Who is the generator and sustainer of ourselves and of all things existing,

Who knows all forms in this universe as His abode, Who created the Gods and allotted to them their respective duties – it is of Him, the One, that all other beings go about enquiring, ” Who is the Supreme Lord ?

O men, you do not know Him Who has brought into existence all this. He dwells hidden within you, transcending even your sense of selfhood. Not knowing Him due to ignorance, which covers your insight like a mist, you spend your lives in false notions of your real self, pursuing physical satisfactions and performing rituals that bestow enjoyments in heavens hereafter.

Rig Veda

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