Sakthi Vikatan- 28 Jun, 2011 Revised June 23, 2018



SriRamana Maharishi

Self-realized Jñānis subscribe to the welfare of all people. They do not entertain liking just for the rich and their favorite people. They like all equally.

The working women collect firewood near the mango tree cave and as they go down the hill, they put down the load and offer homage to Bhagavan with opposed palms. They prostrate on the ground before Bhagavan. Their skin is itchy, dark and thick from injury from thorns, wind, sun and sweat. They request Ramanamaharishi to sprinkle some water on their backs. Then they drink water, take rest and move on.

Bhagavan used to serve the cooked Kañji (gruel) made of grains obtained by begging by the devotees. He used to ladle the gruel into their cups. They used to call it Ambrosia that satisfied their hunger.

It rains for everybody; likewise, Periyava’s compassion rains on all equally, regardless of their personalities, their stations in life, and (caste) poverty or privilege.

He talked high principles and was in the forefront to help the underprivileged, and treated all equally. Bhagavan’s younger paternal uncle Nellaiyappar came to Virūpākṣi cave and had Darśan of him. Bhagavan did not speak to him at all. He stayed for one day and left for home. A youth visiting the cave often asked Periyava to explicate the Dhakshinamurthy Slokas. It is usual for Bhagavan to sit facing the entrance to the cave. But that day, he sat the youth opposite to him with his (Bhagavan’s) back to cave entrance.  That time, Nellaiyappar came for another Darśan.

Nellaiyappar stood behind Bhagavan and wondered about his nephew (older brother’s son) who was late in talking as a child, did not speak to him at this visit and now was explicating Vedanta to a disciple. Bhagavan was explaining the fourth Slokam. Nellaiyappar understood that his brother’s son became the exponent of Tattvas. There was a time when Nellaiyappar worried about the future of his elder brother’s son but when he heard the explanation, he understood that Bhagavan (his nephew) was a powerhouse shining like a Tattva-flame (Exponent of Tattvas).

The explanation given by Bhagavan to Ādisankarā’s Dhakshinamurthy Stotras was wonderful. He wrote a forward to Dhakshinamurthy Stotras.

What is this saying? The four mind-born sons of Brahma were told by their father they were created for worldly purpose (to create progeny and multiply).  They lost faith (in that paradigm) and were disenchanted. They were in search of Truth, wanting to have peace of mind. Paramesvara Himself for the benefit of these foursome seeking him sat under the Banyan Tree in Cin Mudra pose. When they saw him, they went near him as iron is drawn towards the magnet and sat before him.

Nellaiyappar came in when Periyava was explicating the 4th Verse.

Verse 4. I pay homage to Guru Dhakshinamurthy, the refuge of Tapasvins, whose light shines in the false-appearing organs; who brings the knowledge of ‘Thou Art That;’ and who when seen directly ensures no casting in the ocean of metempsychosis.   --Periyava

He whose light gleams through the senses like the light emanating from a pot with holes (in which a lamp is kept), He whose knowledge alone brings the state of knowing (I am That), He whose brightness makes everything shine - to that Dakshinamurti, who is embodied in the auspicious Guru, I offer my profound salutations. Shivam.org

Once he heard the explication, the thought that Maharishi was the son of his elder brother, left him. Nellaiyappar realized a Tattva form is seated here.  Here there are no long-winded instructions. There are no Q&A sessions. Seeing the Truth-Form of Ramana Maharishi, the mind of the Tapasvins involutes. Body, breath, organs, Buddhi…involute into nothingness. 

We see multiplicity in ‘I,’ you, he, women, men, the challenged, the sight-impaired… But, who are they?

If we understand that the body, breath, organs, Buddhi… involute in the Great Path.  We should understand, ‘This’ exits in all objects. That being so, where is (and why is there a) division?  Our homage to Dhakshinamurthy who makes us realize these principles.

SriRamana Maharishi wrote the explication of Dhakshinamurthy Slokam and Sriguru Sthuthi.

Ādisankara on his India tour, won the debate with Mandal Pundit living in Māyimathi in North India, proficient in Karma Kāṇḍam. His wife, the moderator, said that Sankara must win the debate with her to claim his complete victory. She was of the form of Sarasvati.  If Sankara declared that he knew Kāma Sastra, his Sannyāsam will be declared suspect and false. If he declared that he was not familiar with Kāma Sastra, the debate-seeking experienced woman would declare victory. Sankara asked for a month of grace period before his intended debate.  He left his body in a mountain cave and asked his disciples to watch over his body. He entered the body of a dead king, had intimacy with his wives and became conversant with Kāma Sastra. Since Sankaracharya did not show up to the disciples, the disciples in the pose of itinerant singers went to the palace and sang Gurusthuthi before Sankara.

(The story continues in the addendum. Sankara is back in his pristine body with knowledge of Kama Sastra. He debated with Bharati, the spouse of Mandana Misra.)

This is the first poem in Gurusthuthi translated by Bhagavan. In the elucidation of gross and subtle forms of Braḥmam, there were many ‘Neti, Neti,’ (Not this, not this) exclusions. The Self form of the Lord (Braḥmam) is what remains after a multitude of serial exclusions. Braḥmam is also beyond the beyond.  Brahmam is the One retained in the hearts of the Jñānis, whose greatness is beyond words.  The most ancient Supreme Lord is Sat-Cit-Āṉanda and Braḥmam.

‘Is this God? No; Is the idol the God? No; Is God a mere observance of injunctions? Are the temples God? No; Is Ciṉṉamma God? No; Is Kaṭṭamma God? No. Like this, each proposition is considered and rejected. The one that cannot be rejected is God. There is no more rejection or exclusion. What the Jñānis are unable to elucidate and exclude, they keep in their mind, body and soul. That is God. Braḥmam is You, the Intellect that shines in the body. They celebrate Guru as Braḥmam, the Intellect that shines inside.

Guru is what is not explainable, what shines inside and who realized them, according to the poem.

Bhagavan explained all ten poems in the Guru Sthuthi.

Let us get Darśan.

This piece below is an addendum, separate from the article by Mr. Balakumaran.

An ideological adversary converts and becomes his disciple and successor. More light than heat in Sankara's words.

During his tour, Sankara was demolishing the opponents of Monism with well-placed explosive charges in the opponents well-structured arguments so much so they became converts to his philosophy of thought. One such incident involved a husband-wife team of towering intellect, disputatious abrasiveness and royal patronage, which obviously gave them a Big Ego.  Real life Mandana Misra was the worthy but older opponent and his wife Bharati served as the moderator. She devised  a simple objective measure of  heat (fever) generated in a person during an argument. The one who generated more heat than light would be the loser. The loser would convert to the philosophy of the victor and his order of life. (I wish we settle our differences like this.) She placed a flower garland one each for Sankara and Mandana. They wore their garlands and started their arguments and disputations. In the mean time she went about doing her daily chores. They fired salvos and counter-salvos at each other; there was light and heat; this went on for eight days, until it reached a fever pitch. Mandana's hold on his tenets was climbing a slippery slope; he began to cling to the tenets of Sankara and  felt helplessly to side with Sankara. Mandana's  flowers showed signs of wilting, (external and objective) evidence that Mandana (an incarnation of Brahma) generated more heat than light in his arguments and disputations.  Sankara's flower garland was as fresh as the flowers on the living stem indicating that he kept his cool under fire, emitted more light than heat and saved the flowers from wilting. Bharati declared Sankara the winner against her hope and wish. Mandana in the blink of an eye shed his royal robe, donned the saffron robe of Sannyasin, became Sankara's disciple and later his real life successor. His new name was Suresvara Acharya, appointed as the Acharya of the Sringeri Matha later. Suresvara wrote many commentaries: Vartikas, Taitiriya, Brihadaranyaka Bhasyas, commentary of Dakshinamurthy Stotra and Panchikarana, a book on the teachings of Sankara (Naishkarmya Siddhi)....

Bharati though a fair moderator still had remnants of ego in her, did not accept Sankara's Monism and clung to the tenets of rituals.  Legend had it she was the incarnation of Sarasvati, the goddess of speech. They launched verbal salvos at each other; Sankara sent bruising replies; her arguments were losing ground.  As a married woman, she changed her tune and tactic and thought she would demolish bachelor Sankara on the art of conjugal love.  She said to herself, "this time, I will get you good and supine."  When Bharati introduced this new element, Sankara asked for and received deferment. By that time, the local king Amaru  shuffled off his mortal coil leaving a bevy of inconsolable queens in the harem. Sankara saw the opportunity and by his yogic power left his body, entered the body of dead Amaru to every one's surprise, jumping from one chamber to the next like an Alpha Male, engaged in love-making of queens far beyond the range, scope and practice of Kama Sutra so much so Sankara had more intimate knowledge of the art of love than Bharati. Soon to the consternation of the royal household, the erstwhile anabiotic king dropped dead for real from exhaustion of marathon love-making like the bee on its nuptial flight; Sankara left Amaru's body, reentered his own body (under the watchful eyes of his disciples), and was ready for argument with Bharati with his new facile confidence and attitude, beat-you-in-your-own-game.  She posed delicate and intimate questions; his counterpoise was telling in its finesse.  All her moves received instantaneous appropriate reciprocal fitting counter moves from Sankara.  She, a mistress (miester) in the art of love, found Sankara an (verbal) acrobat, whose verbal pośe of balletic perfection left her breathless.  She accepted defeat, was impressed with Sankara's knowledge of the art of love but also the science of love and joined her husband as Sankara's disciple.  Even today, she is tall in her defeat in the temple at Sringeri. Devout followers of Sankara and Saradamba (Bharati) believe that the debate material of the type in Kamasutra, (Havelock Ellis, and  Masters and Johnson) was invented, appended and integrated into the story by overzealous followers and admirers to prove that Sankara was an all-round expert in Tantric sex and Vaidic ways.  After his victorious debate tour, he went to Sringeri with his disciple Mandana Misra to build a mutt and a temple. There he heard that his mother was ill and went to perform the last rites in Kalladi. He helped his mother in deathbed to have visions of Siva's Ganas and Vishnu's messengers. The local Nambhudiris forbade that a Sannyasi could do the funeral rites and stopped everyone offering help to Sankara. Sankara carried the body to the backyard, created fire before him by his yogic power and cremated her body.  He left Kalladi for Sringeri and later east coast, reformed the Saktas and Bhairavas, built Mutts in Kanchi and Puri  and returned back to Sringeri.  He was back on his tour of the North, built Mutts in Dwaraka, went to Nepal and Kashmir, and later to Badrikesh where he built a temple for Narayana.  He lived for 32 years on this earth and shuffled off his mortal coil, some say in a Himalayan cave, some say in Kanchi.