Just as Prakriti Would in the Presence of Purusha!

Quite surprisingly, from that day on, the influence of that sakti became manifest in all activities. It was as if in the presence of Bhagavan that power acted just as prakriti would in the presence of purusha! Its first job was to transform the face of the Ashram itself.

Bhagavan did not notice it but others present did

The Maharshi later said something interesting. After her passing away, Alagammal’s body acquired a new brilliance which persisted till the abhisheka on the following day at the time of samadhi; it disappeared soon after water was poured. Further, at the last breath in all cases a faint sound emanates. In the mother’s case, Bhagavan did not notice it but others present did.

The arrival of the mother at the ashram

She had a painful time and spent most of her time reciting vedantic songs. Like several ladies of her time she was able to sing well though she was not formally trained to do so. She made it a point to learn the import of great vedantic sayings, the mahavakyas, from an elderly lady, Tulasi. Thus she consoled herself and was peaceful.

“What is the use of your meditating on me?”

A few days later the Maharshi appeared in Mudaliar’s dream, in which he said to him: “What is the use of your meditating on me? Meditate on Easwara who is mounted on the bull, Nandi. Once you get his grace my help will follow.” Then onwards, Mudaliar commenced the prescribed meditation. Meanwhile he got a letter from an inmate of Bhagavan’s ashram, Vasudeva Sastry, saying ” Both of your letters have reached us. Bhagavan never gives a reply to letters. You may come and have his darshan”. After he enquired about Sastry and his relationship with the Maharshi, Mudaliar went to Arunachala, He first had the darshan of Arunachaleshwara and spent that night in the temple precincts.

Who is it that worships and who is worshipped?

“That is not clear; that is the whole problem”. Thereupon Bhagavan gave a long discourse on the experience of advaita which Seshadri listened to very attentively. At the end he said, “I am not able to say anything, all of this is unintelligible to me. It is all a blank. As for myself, I am content to be a worshipper always.” Later he prostrated to the peak of the hill fifteen times and left the place. Seshadri seemed to prefer worshipping the peak of the hill as being symbolic of Arunachaleswara, the Almighty.

The Maharshi’s Life on The Hill

Once, an old monkey-chief became sick. He left his group and stood outside the Virupaksha cave. On coming to know this the Maharshi went out to look him up. He also noticed that two previous Chiefs who were expelled by that monkey were on two nearby branches grieving for their erstwhile Chief. The Maharshi took the sick one inside the ashram and nursed him but to no avail. While the old monkey was about to die the other two let out a cry of agony. The Maharshi arranged for the burial of the dead monkey with all honours due to a sannyasin.