Archive for March, 2011

THOSE FASCINATING OBSTRUCTIONS

ADDRESSING a devotee named Mahendra
Mukherjee, said Sri Ramakrishna: “You have no
children. You do not serve anybody. And still you
have no leisure! Goodness gracious!”
“You have no children to divert your mind. I know
a deputy magistrate who draws a salary of eight
hundred rupees a month. He went to Keshab’s
house to see a performance. I was there too.
Rakhal* and a few other devotees were with me
and sat beside me. After a while Rakhal went out
for a few minutes. The deputy magistrate came
over and made his young son take Rakhal’s seat. I
said, ‘He can’t sit there.’ At that time I was in such
a slate of mind that I had to do whatever the
person next to me would ask me to do; so I had
seated Rakhal beside me. As long as the
performance lasted the deputy did nothing but
gibber with his son. The rascal didn’t look at the
performance even once. I heard, too, that he is a
slave to his wife; he gets up and sits down as she
tells him to. And he didn’t see the performance for
that snub-nosed monkey of a boy.”

*Later known as Swami Brahmananda, the first president of the
Ramakrishna Order

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HORSES IN COWSHED!

THE instruction of a man who has not seen God
does not produce the right effect. He may say one
thing rightly, but he becomes confused about the
next.
Samadhyayi* delivered a lecture. He said, “God is
beyond words and mind; He is dry. Worship Him
through the bliss of your love and devotion.” Just
see, he thus described God, Whose very nature is
Joy and Bliss! What will such a lecture accomplish?
Can it teach people anything? Such a lecturer is like
the man who said, “My uncle’s cowshed is full of
horses.” Horses in cowshed! From that you
understand that there were no horses at all.
(…. Nor cows either!)

* A leader of the Brahmo Samaj

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WHAT OCCULT POWERS ARE LIKE

HRIDAY asked me—I was then under his control
to pray to the Divine Mother for (occult) powers. I
went to the temple. In a vision I saw a widow thirty
or thirty five years old, covered with filth. It was
revealed to me that occult powers are like that filth.
I became angry with Hriday because he had asked
me to pray for powers.

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WELCOME GOOD, AND EVIL WELCOMES YOU

A BRAHMANA was laying out a garden. He
looked after it day and night. One day a cow
strayed into the garden and browsed on a mango
sapling of which the brahmana used to take special
care. When he saw the cow destroying his favourite
plant, the brahmana became wild with rage, and
gave such a severe beating to the animal that it died
of the injuries received. The news soon spread like
wild-fire that the brahmana had killed the sacred
animal. When any one attributed the sin of that act
to him, the brahmana, who professed himself to be
a Vedantin, denied the charge, saying: ‘”No, 1 have
not killed the cow; it is my hand that had done it;
and as god Indra is the presiding deity of the hand,
it is he who has incurred the sin of killing the cow,
not I.” Indra, in his heaven, heard of this. He
assumed the shape of an old brahmana, and
coming to the owner of the garden, said, “Sir,
whose garden is this?”
Brahmana: Mine.
Indra: It is a beautiful garden. You have got a
skillful gardener; for see how neatly and artistically
he has planted the trees.
Brahmana: Well, sir, this is all my work. The trees
were planted under my personal supervision and
direction.
Indra: Very nicely done, indeed! Who has laid out
this path? It is very well-planned and neatly
executed.
Brahmana: All that has been done by me.
Then Indra said with folded hands, “When all these
things are yours, and when you take credit for all
the work done in this garden, it is not proper that
poor Indra should be made responsible for killing
the cow.”

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