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Some Glimpses of Ramakrishna
Courtesy: The Vedanta Kesary, English monthly from R K Math, Chennai
Biographers usually write about noteworthy events, marvellous achievements, and amazing stories that take place in the public life of great personalities, and neglect their daily routine, trifling events, and their relationships with their friends and family. As a result, readers do not get a full picture of those great people. Swami Vivekananda remarked:
‘As I grow older I find that I look more and more for greatness in little things. I want to know what a great man eats and wears, and how he speaks to his servants. I want to find a Sir Philip Sidney greatness! Few men would remember the thirst of others, even in the moment of death. But anyone will be great in a great position! Even the coward will grow brave in the glare of the footlights. The world looks on.’
We are human beings so we understand the human aspects of the avatars, who are actually God in human form. Otherwise who could understand the infinite God? It is impossible to comprehend God with our impure minds and puny intellects. The Mundaka Upanishad describes the Cosmic Being:
‘The heavens are His head; the sun and moon, His eyes; the quarters, His ears; the revealed Vedas, His speech; the wind is His breath; the universe, His heart. From His feet is produced the earth. He is indeed the inner Self of all beings.’
This chapter provides some further glimpses of Ramakrishna that reveal some facets of his private life, his daily routine, his interpersonal relationships, his love and concern for others.....
When we read this verse, we become afraid to love that Supreme Being, whose eyes are the sun and the moon. We cannot imagine approaching Him or establishing a relationship with Him. For that reason, we need Rama, Krishna, Buddha, Jesus, Ramakrishna, and other great teachers of the world, who can speak to our hearts and guide us along the path of blessedness.
The most important events, stories, and teachings of Ramakrishna are recorded in Sri Ramakrishna and His Divine Play, The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna, Ramakrishna as We Saw Him, They Lived with God, God Lived with Them, and many other books. This chapter provides some further glimpses of Ramakrishna that reveal some facets of his private life, his daily routine, his interpersonal relationships, his love and concern for others, his surroundings, and so on. These brief and seemingly insignificant incidents draw us close to this Godman, and we get a chance to see his human side vividly. We see him become angry when he encounters hypocrisy; we see him cry when someone dies; we see his feeling for his mother, wife, relatives, and devotees. We see how he suffers from disease, how he sings and dances, laughs and makes jokes, scolds and loves his disciples. Observing all these things, we feel that he is not a god sitting in heaven but a human being like us moving on this earth. To a lover, every detail of his or her beloved’s life is important, because it brings more familiarity, feeling, awareness, love, and joy.
About the author
The author of this article is an unusual writer. He suffers from autism, a brain development disorder. Overcoming all handicaps that an autistic has to face, Krishna, thanks to the care and dedication of his parents, has a B.Sc. level Electrical Engineering degree. His autobiography, Wasted Talent, Musings of an Autistic is an engaging account of his struggles and achievements. His other two books include Quest, Search for a Quality Life and A Tender Melody, a novel. Reading Swami Vivekananda's lectures on Jnana Yoga and some other writings has been a great event in his life. In the following article, he has tried to present some of the Vedantic ideas of Swamiji in the context of facing chronic illness in general and autism