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Gospel of Sri Raamakrishna

Gospel of Sri Raamakrishna



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Published by Srivatsa
fall in ecstasy with sri Ramakrishna's words
fall in ecstasy with sri Ramakrishna's words

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Published by: Srivatsa on Nov 07, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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February 1882
M.'s first visit to the Master
IT WAS ON A SUNDAY in spring, a few days after Sri Ramakrishna's birthday,that M. met him the first time. Sri Ramakrishna lived at the Kailibari, the templegarden of Mother Kali, on the bank of the Ganges at Dakshineswar.M., being at leisure on Sundays, had gone with his friend Sidhu to visit severalgardens at Baranagore. As they were walking in Prasanna Bannerji's garden, Sidhusaid: "There is a charming place on the bank of the Ganges where a paramahamsalives. Should you like to go there?" M. assented and they started immediately forthe Dakshineswar temple garden. They arrived at the main gate at dusk and wentstraight to Sri Ramakrishna's room. And there they found him seated on a woodencouch, facing the east. With a smile on his face he was talking of God. The room wasfull of people, all seated on the floor, drinking in his words in deep silence.M. stood there speechless and looked on. It was as if he were standing where allthe holy places met and as if Sukadeva himself were speaking the word of God, oras if Sri Chaitanya were singing the name and glories of the
Lord in Puri withRamananda, Swarup, and the other devotees.
Formalities and essentials of religion
Sri Ramakrishna said: "When, hearing the name of Hari or Rama once, you shedtears and your hair stands on end, then you may know for certain that you do nothave to perform such devotions as the sandhya any more. Then only will you have aright to renounce rituals; or rather, rituals will drop away of themselves. Then it willbe enough if you repeat only the name of Rama or Hari, or even simply Om."
Continuing, he said, "The sandhya merges in the Gayatri, and the Gayatri merges inOm."M. looked around him with wonder and said to himself: "What a beautiful place!What a charming man! How beautiful his words are! I have no wish to move fromthis spot." After a few minutes he thought, "Let me see the place first; then I'llcome back here and sit down."As he left the room with Sidhu, he heard the sweet music of the evening servicearising in the temple from gong, bell, drum, and cymbal. He could hear music fromthe nahabat, too, at the south end of the garden. The sounds travelled over theGanges, floating away and losing themselves in the distance. A soft spring wind wasblowing, laden with the fragrance of flowers; the moon had just appeared. It was asif nature and man together were preparing for the evening worship. M. and Sidhuvisited the twelve Siva temples, the Radhakanta temple, and the temple ofBhavatarini. And as M. watched the services before the images his heart was filledwith joy.On the way back to Sri Ramakrishna's room the two friends talked. Sidhu told M.that the temple garden had been founded by Rani Rasmani. He said that God wasworshipped there daily as Kali, Krishna, and Siva, and that within the gates sadhusand beggars were fed. When they reached Sri Ramakrishna's door again, they foundit shut, and Brinde, the Maid, standing outside. M., who had been trained in Englishmanners and would not enter a room without permission, asked her, "Is the holy manin?" Brinde replied, "Yes he's in the room."M: "How long has he lived here?"B
: "Oh, he has been here a long time."M: "Does he read many books?"B
: "Books? Oh, dear no! They're all on his tongue."
M. had just finished his studies in college. It amazed him to hear that SriRamakrishna read no books.M: "Perhaps it is time for his evening worship. May we go into the room? Will youtell him we are anxious to see him?"B
Go right in, children. Go in and sit down."Entering the room, they found Sri Ramakrishna alone, seated on the woodencouch. Incense had just been burnt and all the doors were shut. As he entered, M.with folded hands saluted the Master. Then, at the Master's bidding, he and Sidhusat on the floor. Sri Ramakrishna asked them: "Where do you live? What is youroccupation? Why have you come to Baranagore?" M. answered the questions, but henoticed that now and then the Master seemed to become absent-minded. Later helearnt that this mood is called bhava, ecstasy. It is like the state of the angler whohas been sitting with his rod: the fish comes and swallows the bait, and the floatbegins to tremble; the angler is on the alert; he grips the rod and watches the floatsteadily and eagerly; he will not speak to anyone. Such was the state of SriRamakrishna's mind. Later M. heard, and himself noticed, that Sri Ramakrishnawould often go into this mood after dusk, sometimes becoming totally unconsciousof the outer world.M: "Perhaps you want to perform your evening worship. In that case may we takeour leave?"S
still in ecstasy 
): "No—evening worship? No, it is not exactlythat."After a little conversation M. saluted the Master and took his leave. "Comeagain", Sri Ramakrishna said.On his way home M. began to wonder: "Who is this serene-looking man who isdrawing me back to him? Is it possible for a man to be great without being a