Sri Ramakrishna at the Dakshineswar Temple with Surendra, Bhavanath, Rakhal, Latu, M., Adhar, and Other Devotees
Character of Baburam, Rakhal, Latu, Niranjan, Narendra, and others
It is evening. Sri Ramakrishna is seated in his room with the devotees at the Dakshineswar temple, chanting the name of the Mother of the Universe and meditating on Her. Rakhal, Adhar, M., and couple of other devotees are there.
It is Friday, 20 June 1884, the twelfth day of the dark fortnight of Jaishtha. The Car Festival will begin in five days.
After some time the arati begins in the various temples and Adhar goes to watch. For Mani’s education, Thakur is talking happily with him about the devotees.
Sri Ramakrishna: “Well, does Baburam want to continue his studies? I said to him, ‘Continue your studies to set an example.’ After Sita was set free, Bibhishana refused to accept the throne. Rama said, ‘You must become king for the benefit of the ignorant. Otherwise, they will say, “Bibhishana served Rama, but what did he gain?” They will be happy to see that you have gained the kingdom.’
“The other day I saw that Baburam, Bhavanath, and Harish have a feminine nature.
“I saw Baburam as a goddess, with a necklace around his neck and female companions with him. He has received something in a dream. His body is pure. He’ll have to do only a little, and he will succeed.
“You know what’s happening? I’m finding it difficult to take care of my body. It would be good if he would come and live here. The nature of these boys is changing. Noto (Latu) remains on a high plane of spiritual emotion. Gradually he’s going to merge with God.
“Rakhal is developing such a nature that I myself have to serve him. He isn’t of much service to me.
“Where are any other youngsters like Baburam and Niranjan? I feel that if others come, they’ll just get instruction and leave.
“But I don’t force Baburam to come here; it could create problems at home. (Smiling) When I say, ‘Why don’t you come,’ he has a nice reply, ‘Why don’t you make me come?’ When he sees Rakhal, he weeps, saying he is so happy here.
“Rakhal lives here now like a son of the house. I know he won’t be attached to the world now. He says, ‘All those things appear so tasteless to me.’ His wife came here. She’s fourteen years old. From here she went to Konnagar. They asked him to go too, but he didn’t. He said, ‘I don’t enjoy such fun and frolic.’
“How does Niranjan appear to you?”
M.: “He is handsome.”
Sri Ramakrishna: “No, not just his face. He’s also simple and guileless. One can easily realize God if he is guileless. Spiritual instructions work faster in a guileless heart. It is like a well-tilled field without stones or pebbles. The moment a seed falls on the ground, it germinates. And it quickly bears fruit.
“Niranjan won’t marry. Don’t you think it is ‘lust and greed’ that bind a person?”
M.: “Sir, they do.”
Sri Ramakrishna: “What use is it to give up tobacco and betel leaf? Giving up ‘lust and greed’ is the real renunciation.
“I saw in a vision that, though he worked in an office, he would not be touched by it. He works for his mother’s sake. There’s no harm in that.
“A clerk is jailed. He is bound, chained, and later set free. Will he dance with gusto after being released? No, he again takes to clerkship. You don’t wish to have a paid job, but you have to provide for your family. If you didn’t, what would happen to them?”
Mani: “I can leave if someone takes responsibility for them.”
Sri Ramakrishna: “Yes, that’s true. But for now do both this and that, the worldly and also the spiritual.”
Mani: “It takes great luck to be able to renounce everything.”
Sri Ramakrishna: “That is certainly true. But it depends on inborn tendencies. A little work still remains in your case. When you have completed that, you will feel peace. You will be released. A patient is not easily discharged once he has entered a hospital – only when he is cured.
“Two classes of devotees come here. One class says, ‘O Lord, please save me!’ The other class, who belong to the inner circle, don’t say this. They will succeed by only knowing two things, ‘One, who I am, and then who they are – that is, what their relationship with me is.’
“You belong to the latter class. Otherwise, how could you do so much –”
Narendra, Rakhal, and Niranjan have masculine natures – Baburam and Bhavanath have feminine natures
“Bhavanath and Baburam have feminine natures. Harish wears a woman’s cloth when he goes to bed. Baburam says, ‘I like that attitude.’ That is why they’ve met each other. Bhavanath also has that attitude. On the other hand, Narendra, Rakhal, and Niranjan have masculine natures.
Significance of the broken arm – Sri Ramakrishna and occult powers
“Well, what does breaking my arm mean? Once before I broke a tooth in a state of ecstasy. This time it was my arm.”
Seeing that Mani is silent, Thakur himself answers.
“My arm broke to rid me completely of my I-ness. I can no longer find ‘I’ within me. Looking for I, I find only Him. Until one is completely rid of I-ness, it is not possible to attain Him.
“Look at the chatak bird. It lives on land, but see how high it flies!
“Captain says I haven’t gained occult powers because I eat fish.
“Sometimes I tremble at the thought that I might attain such powers. If I had them, this place would have turned into a hospital. People would be coming here begging, ‘Please cure us.’ Are occult powers good?”
M.: “No, sir. You yourself have said that if one possesses even one of the eight occult powers, it is impossible to realize God.”
Sri Ramakrishna: “You are right. Only people of low intelligence want occult powers.
“If you ask a favour of a rich man, he no longer respects you. He doesn’t allow you to ride in the same carriage with him. And even if he does, he doesn’t let you sit near him. So the best is selfless love for God that rises unbidden out of the depths of the soul.”
God without form is true, and so is God with form – the home of a devotee is Thakur’s meeting place
“Well, what do you say, are God without form and God with form both true? One can’t fix the mind on the formless God for long. So God assumes form for the devotee.
“Captain said something beautiful, ‘A bird flies very high. But when it gets tired, it comes to the branch of a tree to rest. God with form after God without form.’
“I’ll have to visit your home once. I saw in a vision that Adhar’s house, Surendra’s house, and Balaram’s house are all meeting places for the devotees.
“But I’m neither happy nor sad if they don’t come here.”
Merriment with devotees is the magic of magician – Chandi – grace of God
M.: “Sir, why should that not happen? Whoever feels happiness also feels sorrow. You are beyond both happiness and sorrow.”
Sri Ramakrishna: “Yes. And I see it all as a magician and his magic. Only the magician is real; all his magic is ephemeral, like a dream.
“I realized this when I listened to a recitation of the Chandi. First I heard that the demons Shumbha and Nishumbha were born, and shortly after I heard that they were dead.”
M.: “Sir, once I was going with Gangadhar to Kalna, by steamboat. The steamboat collided with another boat carrying twenty or twenty-five passengers. It sank, along with all the people. It all disappeared like the foam churned up by a steamer’s waves.
“Tell me, does a person watching a play have compassion for others? Does he feel any responsibility? Without some feeling of doership, compassion is not possible, is it?”
Sri Ramakrishna: “He sees all these things at the same time: God, maya, living beings, and the universe.
“He sees that maya (vidyamaya and avidyamaya), living beings, and the universe exist, and yet do not exist. As long as one is conscious of ‘I,’ he is conscious of others. But once it is cut through with the sword of spiritual knowledge, nothing at all exists. Then even the ‘I’ becomes the magic of the magician.”
Mani contemplates this. Sri Ramakrishna says, “You know what it’s like? It’s like cutting through a flower’s twenty-five layers of petals in one stroke.”
“Feeling you are the doer! Rama! Rama! Sukadeva and Shankaracharya kept their ego of knowledge. It is not man’s compassion; that belongs to God. Compassion is the ego of knowledge – and He Himself has become the ‘I of knowledge.’”
Very secret talk – Kali and Brahman – jurisdiction of Primal Power, Kalki avatar
“You may watch a thousand tricks of magic, yet everything is under God. You cannot escape. You are not independent. Indeed, you have to do what He makes you do. One attains the knowledge of Brahman only when His Primal Power dispenses it. Then you can witness the play of the magician. Otherwise not.
“As long as you have even a little consciousness of ‘I,’ you are under the jurisdiction of the Primal Power – and unable to set yourself free.
“The play of an incarnation of God is the play of the Primal Power. It is by Her power that the avatar incarnates as a human being. Thus alone does an incarnation work; it is all by the power of the Divine Mother.
“Whenever someone would ask for money from the former treasurer of the Kali Temple, he would say, ‘Come back in two or three days. Let me ask the proprietor.’
“At the end of the Kaliyuga, God will incarnate Himself as Kalki – a brahmin’s son who knows nothing. But suddenly he will be given a horse and a sword.”
Keshab Sen’s mother and sister – Bhuvanmohini, the wet-nurse
Adhar returns from the arati. Bhuvanmohini, a wet-nurse, sometimes comes to see Thakur. He cannot eat the food brought by everyone.
Sri Ramakrishna (to Adhar and others): “Bhuvan came to see me. She brought twenty-five Bombay mangoes, sandesh, and rasagollas. She asked me if I would eat a mango. I said, ‘My stomach is heavy today.’ And truly today my stomach is uncomfortable after eating only a little kichuri and sandesh.
“Keshab Sen’s mother and sister came here. So I danced a little. What else could I do? I had to entertain them. They have suffered great bereavement.”
. Later Swami Niranjanananda.
. Referring to himself.
. Purusha bhava.
. Prakriti bhava.
. Nishkama bhakti.
. Ahetuki bhakti.
. Ishvara, maya, jiva, and jagat.
. Rama! Rama! means “good heavens!”
. The tenth and last incarnation of Vishnu, who is yet to come.
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