Some were about 1935 a doctor friend of mine visited the Ashram and stayed with Bhagavan for over six weeks. He was deeply pious and devoted to Sri Ramanuja Sampradaya. His devotion to Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi was equally great. He was a great congress worker. I remember that he was a good friend of Swamy Ramananda of Hyderabad, for I saw him in his company, when the Swamiji visited Bhagavan at the time of the Government of India’s police action against the Nizam’s State. Later this doctor himself became a minister of the state and was in charge of the finance portfolio.
The doctor’s visit synchronised with the occasion when Bhagavan had an attack of eczema for which he was being treated by the local doctors. This doctor being more qualified than others took the lead in treating Bhagavan. The treatment went on for about a fortnight. Patches of white ointment were seen all over Bhagavan’s body. After a fortnight, the disease seemed to get under control. The doctor was happy and congratulated himself that he had the opportunity to treat Bhagavan with success.
Lo! His elation was short lived. The disease burst out again with redoubled vigour. The doctor said to me that it was a lesson to him to curb his ego and continued the treatment with great humility and prayerfulness, praying to Bhagavan that he must effect the cure himself and that he (the doctor) was but his instrument.
The divine patient now seemed to make steady progress and gave consolation to the doctor that his prayer was being heard. The doctor oscillated between elation and curbing of his ego according to the disease as it decreased or increased. All along this course of treatment and from the time the doctor friend arrived at the Ashram, I had the pleasure of his acquaintance and of talking to him about Bhagavan. We used to sit until late in the night and talk and talk about Bhagavan, so absorbed in our conversation that we had no sense of space or time.
It was the month of December and Bhagavan’s jayanthi was arriving. I used to talk to my doctor friend about the speciality of jayanthi darshan, for on the jayanthi day Bhagavan had a special glow of light about him and his starry eyes shed a special lustre and those around experienced the ambrosia or the elixir of life. It is for experiencing this light or bliss of being that devotees flocked to him from near and far. Though this experience was obtained on normal days too, it was very intense on particular occasions like jayanthi, Mahapooja and Karthikai days, as also it was when great souls met him.
It is of this special favour to devotees that I was telling my doctor friend. I used to call it the special grace of Bhagavan on the jayanthi occasion.
It was at this time that Bhagavan was putting the eczema ointment over his body. What could be the nature of this jayanthi dream? This was the anxiety of my doctor friend and he used to ask me often, “Mr. Iyer, how will Bhagavan give special darshan
to his devotees with these white paints and patches on him? I am sorry that I shall not have the fortune of having it. Why should he have this disease at this time when I am visiting him?”
I used to reply, “Wait and see if he will be Bhagavan your patient, or the Bhagavan of my description dispensing special grace on the jayanthi occasion.”
The jayanthi day came. There were the usual decorations, gathering of devotees, pujas, music etc. Bhagavan was seated in a specially decorated pandal. All the same he was to my doctor friend still his patient Bhagavan and not the Bhagavan of my description. I was not sorry that Bhagavan was going to belie my expectation and that of other devotees who were accustomed to have the jayanthi gift of Bhagavan. (They used to call it Bhagavan’s jayanthi gift). I was only sorry for my doctor friend.
It was 9 a.m. on the jayanthi morning. All eyes were riveted on Bhagavan. There were the longing prayers of the souls gathered around Bhagavan. Suddenly there appeared the special features of Bhagavan on his face and eyes. The nija mouna bhava, its fullness expressing itself as Atma Rama – Muditha vadana and Dakshinamurthi. The Bliss of his Being ebbing over his countenance beautifying it, true to the words of Dakshinamuthi’s names: Sundara, Sundara, Sundara, I am the perfection of beauty of the inner Self. I am ‘I’. Ahamevaham.
The peace of his Being permeated the atmosphere and all those that were gathered around, keeping them enthralled in the grace that was his. The peace that passeth all understanding. The unborn (Ajayamana) was revealing himself through a form. Bhagavan was Bhagavan telling us without telling Tat Twam Asi (That Thou art). “Tat Twam Asi, Tat Twam Asi” nithyam.
I whispered to my doctor friend to tell me if Bhagavan was his patient Bhagavan or Jayanthi Ramana Bhagavan. He could only nod his head in acceptance of my remarks. He was all spellbound and in wonder. He remarked later, “Mr. Sundaresh, I have lived to see this great marvel. Who would say he is like any of us? Yet he condescends to be one of us and that is our great fortune. My patient is my darling and God.”