Yogim Vande Jagadgurum – My Salutations to Yogi Ramsuratkumar
Yogi Ramsuratkumar attracted us by his simple and unconditional love. He would not order us or force us in any way to do anything. Yet he got us to do what he wanted. Rather than making His messages sound like a lecture or advice, He made it seem like a casual conversation between friends.
Yes, we were His “friends”[i]. He once apologetically told Prof. C.V.R that he has been ignoring the professor and has been talking only to the kids. In another instance, I got to know from the famous music director, Sri Ilayaraja that Yogiji asked him to come later as he was “busy with this begger’s friends”[ii].
As I was very talkative, in course of time, I even raced Vivek in grabbing Yogiji’s full attention[iii]. But, no one can take Yogiji for granted. There were also instances when it would seem like Yogiji didn’t even recognize me when I enter his abode and he would ask his typical question “Your name?”
Gradually we learnt how to behave in his presence; when to be serious and disciplined; and when to be more casual. The typical example is to not shift the glasses when he gets us milk from the local tea stalls.
Usually, when we were not having conversations, Yogiji would make us repeat some songs, shlokas or namavali. Sometimes, he would get some book and make us read them aloud.
I have had opportunities to fan Him with his Palm hand fan. I had lit his cigarettes. He used to move his face backwards and tell smilingly that he is afraid as I bring the fire too close to his beard.
One of his indirect ways of teaching was to make us read the words of great men, like this one from Vivekananda – “… For what has the Hindu nation been doing for thousands of years except producing sages?”[iv]
During that period of our life, dilemmas were averted and personal decisions were quick, as we just had to ask Yogiji what He wanted us to do. He told me, Vivek and Prof. C.V.R’s son, Bhaskar that we should not be donating blood. He wanted our “blood, bones, flesh and everything for a higher cause.”[v]
One day, when I conveyed my interest to visit Anandashram, Yogiji felt very happy[vi]. Picking up on that, I visited Anandashram multiple times. He encouraged the members of Yogi Ramsuratkumar Youth Association to spread Ramnam and help in achieving Mataji Krishnabai’s target of 15,500 crores.
Yogiji had a style of coaching that was very personal. He would suggest things that he wants us to do, in a very friendly manner. He motivated us to set high ideals for ourselves by saying encouraging words like “you will make history”[vii].
The key messages were – to always have faith (he would say F_A_I_T_H with a lot of emphasis); to remember Him in difficult times; to speak the truth; to eat nellikkai (amla) regularly; to keep in mind that the highest goal of life is not earning wealth even though we need to carry out the job assigned to us. There were other ordinary things too that any grandparent would loving tell their grandchild, like – not to rest the chin on the palm; and to learn cooking, especially sweets, from the chef uncle in the neighbourhood.
Rather than fulfilling every wish of ours, He instructed us to accept the situation, like the case when He advised Vivek to take up Civil Engineering that was allotted to him, while Vivek wanted to go in for Computer Engineering that was available at a price. Once, while answering my prayers at Sudhama, Yogiji assured that he would always be with me. He induced a feeling of courage and strength that His protective shield is ever present.
Even the highest truth about His divinity was a lengthy jovial dialogue between me and him, spanning across many visits wherein he would ask “Do you know that I am a beggar?”[viii]And I would end up giving reasons as to why He is a Great Yogi. He thoroughly enjoyed my praise that was filled with innocence. These interactions were meticulously captured in my father’s magazine, Tattva Darsana, which served as Yogiji’s mouth-piece during that period.
One of my prized possessions is a letter from Yogi Ramsuratkumar, where he wrote “ॐ रंगराजा को परमपिता आशीर्वाद देते हैं। निवेदिता को मेरा आशीर्वाद । योगी रामसुरतकुमार तिरुवणामलै ॐ”meaning “Om. My master blesses Rangaraja. My blessings to Nivedita! Yogi Ramsuratkumar Tiruvannamalai Om”.
Wasn’t Arjuna just a medium for Krishna to communicate His teachings, the Bhagavad Gita, to the entire humanity? The divine play of Yogi Ramsuratkumar with us was not meant from us alone to enjoy. It was for the benefit of His numerous ardent devotees who are eager to know more and more about this Divinity that lived in our midst, Yogi Ramsuratkumar.
May Sri Yogi Ramsuratkumar, the king of preceptors and the beloved of Lord Rama, protect us!
योगीरामसुरत्कुमारगुरुराट्रामप्रिय: पातुन: | [ix] yōgī rāmasuratkumāragururāṭ rāmapriyah pātu nah |
Yogi Ramsuratkumar, Yogi Ramsuratkumar, Yogi Ramsuratkumar, Jaya Guru Raya!
[ii]Glimpses of a Great Yogi, Part II-B, p. 43.
[iii]Glimpses of a Great Yogi, Part II-A, p. 39.
[iv]Glimpses of a Great Yogi, Part II-A, p. 19.
[v]Glimpses of a Great Yogi, Part II-B, p. 11.
[vi]Glimpses of a Great Yogi, Part I, p. 61.
[vii]Glimpses of a Great Yogi, Part II-A, p. 23
[viii]Glimpses of a Great Yogi, Part II-A, p. 24, 31, 33, and 36.
[ix]Yogi Ramsuratkumar Guru Raja Ashtakam, Shaaktasri Dr. K. Vaidyanaata Shaastri