Friday, 27 June 2014

YOGI RAMAIAH


I heard about Yogi Ramaiah and very much wanted to meet him. I came to know that he frequently came to Malaysia. Then in 2006, I came across in a local Tamil daily that carried the news that he had passed away on 12.7.2006 in Malaysia and preparations were being made to bring him over to India. I rushed to the address where his mortal form was laid.  I got to see his mortal frame. I paid my respects to him. He was placed at a temple for Babaji. There were not many people around then. Some devotees were chanting Babaji’s Naama Japa. 

Ramaiah was born on May 9, 1923 at the mansion of SA Annamalai Chettiar, the Ananda Vilas, in Kanadukathan. His family had served Ramana Maharishi for 3 generations. Besides that a Sadhu, Chela Swami used to frequent their home.

Sadly Ramaiah contracted bone tuberculosis which stopped him from traveling to the USA to continue his studies. He was immobilzed for 6 years. His wife and servants cared for him at San Thome in Madras. Ramaiah used this time to read up on all the Indian spiritual literature. During these years, Prasanananda Guru aided him in meditation while Omkara Swami shared his knowledge of yoga. Ramaiah also published his first book based on Omkara Swami’s life, "A BLISSFUL SAINT." In 1952, he had a visit from Mauna Swami too, a disciple of Shirdi Sai Baba. Shortly afterwards, Ramaiah had a vision of Shirdi Sai Baba. He asked if Baba was his Guru. Baba replied, "No, but I will reveal to you who your guru is", and Ramaiah was shown his guru Babaji.

One day Ramaiah succumbed to the pain and misery that he was undergoing and decided to end his life by holding his breath. Suddenly he heard Babaji's voice telling him, "Do not take your life! Give it to me!" Surprised at the divine intervention Ramaiah surrendered to Babaji.

The next day, upon awakening, Ramaiah felt that he was healed. Summoning the doctors, and to everyone's astonishment Ramaiah was indeed healed completely. Soon Ramaiah regained the use of his legs. In another vision Ramaiah saw Babaji limping and questioned him. To his surprise, Babaji replied he was taking on Ramaiah's illness (bone tuberculosis)!

Ramaiah started chanting Babaji’s Nama Japam, "Om Kriya Babaji Nama Aum."

Meanwhile Ramaiah seeing an advert of VT Neelakantan’s book, No 9 BOAG ROAD based on Satguru Rama Devi, requested a copy. VT Neelakantan met Ramaiah at San Thome and hence began a friendship between the 51 year old Neelakantan and the 29 year old Ramaiah. Besides delivering the book, VT Neelakantan shared a secret with Ramaiah too. He was visited by Babaji at his prayer room in Madras every night!

Babaji through VT Neelakantan asked them both to collaborate to establish a Yoga society named after him, the Kriya Babaji Sangam in 1952 and its information arm the Kriya Yoga Magazine and to spread his teachings in a series of books, "THE VOICE OF BABAJI AND MYSTICISM UNLOCKED," "BABAJI'S MASTERKEY TO ALL ILLS," and "DEATH OF DEATH." 

Later Babaji began appearing to Ramaiah too. Ramaiah now 31, was summoned to Badrinath by Babaji in 1954. After three days of wandering, Babaji revealed himself physically to Ramaiah. Ramaiah received training from Babaji in Kriya Yoga. Ramaiah was acquainted with Babaji's principle disciples too, Annai Nagalakshimi Deviyar and Dadaji.

Once back in Madras in 1955, Ramaiah continued his tapas and started the worship of Kali.

Hence he came to be known as Yogi Ramaiah.

Under the instructions of Babaji, Yogi Ramaiah, moved to Bombay with his wife, to study physiotherapy. While there he did many wonders, of curing the ill with his knowledge of yoga and physiotherapy. Soon he returned to Madras to practice.

From 1956 Yogi Ramaiah and his wife took to the road to preach, teach and heal, which brought them to Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Vietnam. In 1954, Ramaiah initiated the "Parliament of World Religions and Yoga", which was then held annually. He published "SONGS OF THE 18 SIDDHAS" in 1968, based on preserved old palm leaf manuscripts of the writings of the 18 Siddhas that he had collected along the way over a span of 25 years.

After his wife passed away, he journeyed again to Malaysia and also to Australia and New Zealand before moving to the United States in 1968. From a small following, that formed the "American Babaji Yoga Sangam", it mushroomed to more than 50 yoga centers throughout the world. He built many holy shrines and temples too.

Based on Yogi Ramaiah's biography at http://www.babajiskriyayoga.net/english/articles/art25-yogi-ssa-ramaiah.htm, M.Govindan's BABAJI AND THE 18 SIDDHA KRIYA YOGA TRADITION, and Yogi Ramaiah's BABAJI GITA.

GOD DOES NOT HAVE AN IMAGE

The Immortal One said, "I have no image of myself. Whatever you see, it is not I. But I operate through my disciple. So if you have seen him, you have seen Me, through your own eyes..." 
~ Babaji on Ram Charan Lahari Mahasaya.
Srinath Raghavan posted the above on FB. Beautifully said. 

It is said that Ramalinga Adigal's image too could not be caught on film (photographed).

Agathiyar too takes us to task for portraying him and the gods to our liking as revealed through the Jeeva Nadi in Sitthan Arul. Agathiyar asks the Jeeva Nadi Guru of Chennai to start immediately to Kanjamalai and points out to him a statue of him. With regret Agathiyar says, that he has been portrayed with a big pot belly and old. Lobhamudra, on the other hand, has been potrayed as an 18 year old. Agathiyar says he is been ridiculed by man. He points to yet another statue of him and tells the Jeeva Nadi Guru that he is been portrayed as a 90 year old. "It looks like I have to remind mankind that I am not this", he quips. "Looks like man will give form to the gods as and how they like and change these forms according to their whims and wishes."

"God goes beyond forms", says Agathiyar.

In my Nadi reading on 17.10.2010, Agathiyar talks about how it is possible to achieve all the benefits of practicing Hatha Yoga through conducting prayers. He talks about performing charity too. Then he surprises me saying that from this point on (the reading), he was relaying the messages from Ganapati Dasar. Ganapati was pleased that I had assumed Agathiyar as Ganapati and performed the prayers (Puja), libation (Abhisegam) and the fire ritual (Homam) for him (Ganapati) on his Chathurthi.

"This is the truth and how it is. We are all one", he says. Agathiyar reveals that just as all of creation is within him, he too is within all creation. Agathiyar says he shall take on the form of whoever we chose to see. 

Lahiri Mahasaya
An account of Lahiri Mahasaya’s (Shama Churn Lahiree) first encounter with his guru Babaji is narrated by Lahiri’s grandson Satya Charan Lahiree to Dr. Ashoke Kumar Chatterjee in ‘PURANA PURUSHA YOGIRAJ SRI SHAMA CHURN LAHIREE’.
On 23rd November 1868, Shama Churn received the order for his transfer to Ranikhet. Leaving his family behind, he set out for Ranikhet which is situated in the Himalayas in northern India.
One day Shama Churn, accompanied by armed guards and orderlies proceeding along the solitary hill path carrying official cash with him suddenly heard someone calling him by his name. 
“Shama Churn, come here”
The voice echoed in the mountain and reverberated in the ears of Shama Churn and he was amazed that who might call him by his name in this mountainous region filled with forests. Then he saw a Sanyasin at the top of the mountain calling his name. He proceeded towards the Sanyasin spell bound to find him bear a gentle smile on his face with fatherly affection in his eyes. 
The Sanyasin hastily came down the hill top and stood before him. The Sanyasin said, “Shama Churn, do not be afraid, I knew you would be coming by this path, I have been waiting for you. Complete your office task quickly and come to my hermitage at the top of the hill”.
Shama Churn brooded over this after his office work was done and at last decided to meet the Sanyasin. He walked along the lonely mountain path to find the hermitage after an exhaustive travel along the forest. 
Shama Churn bowed to the Sanyasin. The Sanyasin asked him, “How strange Shama Churn, can’t you recognize me? Can you recollect having come here before? Can’t you recognize this tiger skin, this ascetic’s bowl also? Have you forgotten everything?”
Shama Churn failed to remember any of them and said, “I have never come here before. I cannot recognize them; they must belong to somebody else.” 
The Sanyasin stated, “Listen Shama Churn, all these are the play of illusion. It is this illusion which has made you forget all these things.”
Saying this the Sanyasin lightly touched Shama Churn. An electric current traversed throughout his body. The whole universe evanescence from Shama Churn. This caused him to recollect his previous life of Sadhana and understood the great Sanyasin as his Guru in his previous birth. With tearful eyes, Shama Churn prostrated at the feet of the Sanyasin for he now retrieved the nearest one of all his births and rebirths.
The Sanyasin continued, “You have practiced yoga Sadhana in your previous birth here. I have preserved your things with utmost care. Your life ended here and you were born as Gourmohan’s son and since then I have been observing all your aspects. I have arranged for your transfer here to impart initiation into yoga to you. I have been waiting for you here since last 40 years.”
After this the great Sanyasin initiated him into Kriyayoga. Shama Churn attained the state of non-dynamism and became engrossed in Samadhi. A golden era of yoga culture in India commenced the very moment Shama Churn’s initiation into yoga occurred and this initiation roused His latent spiritual faculties and powers. 
A painting of Babaji
From then onward Shama Churn would daily finish his official duties early and engage Himself in the austere practice of Sadhana.
After some time Babaji informed Him that he has to leave the cave and go elsewhere as the habitat was gradually becoming crowded rendering it unfit for Sadhana-oriented habitation. To Shama Churn who wanted to leave everything and follow Babaji, he replied that he will have to remain in the family ambit as a complete householder and practice austere Sadhana.
Babaji Maharaja adorned Shama Churn with the esoteric essence of yoga Sadhana before sending him to the field of worldly action where the superficial aspect of the material world could not affect him in the least.
Since ages vexed householders have prayed to their respective deities, thus, “O God, show us such a path that will enable us to practice Sadhana by remaining within the family. Barring family life, we cannot practice Sadhana. O Bhagawan send such a guide who being a family man himself, can show the true path to householders.” 
Shama Churn descended on the earth with a noble vow. He had pledged to householders that he would show them a marvelous, skillful facile path of yoga. 
Now providence pulled Shama Churn towards the path he was destined to take.
If we just saw a moment ago how Babaji came to remind his disciple Lahiri Mahasaya of their previous bond so did Bhogar reveal to his student Babaji of his bond with Agathiyar. After spending time under the tutorship of his Guru Sidha Bhogar at Kathirgamam in Ceylon, Bhogar told Babaji to seek out Agathiyar at Pothigai Hills. Babaji left Kathirgamam for the Pothigai Hills.

Yogi S A A Ramaiah in his book BABAJI GITA, writes, 
At the end of his training, Boganathar blessed Babaji Nagaraj, "My son! I'm not your Pranayam Guru. You'll have to search and find your destined Siddha Pranayam Guru Agasthiar, who will teach you Kriya Kundalini Pranayam to attain Soruba Samadi, the goal of Tamil Siddhantha".
On arrival at Courtallam, Babaji adamantly went into penance until Agathiyar appeared in front of him and conferred on him siddhis.


Ramaiah mentions that this meeting between the Guru and the disciple took place at the site of the present day Shenbaga Devi Amman temple at Courtallam which is also the exact spot where Agathiyar appeared to initiate his disciple Maha Avatar Babaji into Kriya Kundalini Pranayam.

Babaji was then directed to Badrinath. 

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

SHARING THE SPACE

18 SITTHARGAL ALAYA KUMBHABHISEGAM, KOVAI

18 Sitthargal Alaya Kumbhabhisegam @ Kovai. Photos Courtesy of Sri Agathiar Gnana Peedham, Kallar @ http://www.agathiarkallar.org/blog/

Tavayogi Thangarasan Adigal and Mataji Sarojini Ammaiyaar at the 18 Siddhargal Alayam
Agathiyar





Gurumuni Sri Agathiyar 18 Sitthargal Alayam
Bhogar
Kamalamuni
Karuvurar
Konganar
Korakar
Kuthambai sitthar
Machamuni
Nandheeswarar
Pambatti Sitthar
Patanjali
Punnakeesar
Ramadevar
Sattainathar
Sivavakiyar
Tirumular