Never did I imagine that I’d visit Arunachala Mountain and the Sri Ramanashram in India. Nor did I expect the intensity of the experience once it happened. Tears came quickly in Ramana Maharshi’s presence. I crumbled to my knees. And now, each time his image comes to mind I’m overwhelmed again. I do not entirely understand what this is about. Perhaps it will be fully revealed. Perhaps not. It does not matter.
One morning, during satsang, as I looked at Ramana’s face my attention moved to his eyes. For the first time I saw love—soft, relaxed, and calm. Previously, I only discerned a harsh demeanour. Maybe this stemmed from the many stories I’ve read about his stern and short instructions, which to me sounded like reprimands. Even still, I have always held deep respect for Sri Ramana.
After arriving in Tiruvannamalai I was drawn to take a run around Arunachala. I don’t sense the strong pull to the hill that many others feel, yet during the fifteen kilometre loop I was often compelled to look upon the mountain and give thanks. Something has attracted me here, even if it is subconscious. I look forward to going up the 800 metre high hill as far as is allowed.
(Note: Since this writing I’ve begun to feel the resonance of Arunachala Mountain. I’ll write about this later.)
During a satsang, our teacher Govind was explaining about Yoga and the five divisions. In short, Yoga means Union—the Divine that is always present. The divisions are different paths that help us return to Source. One of these is Karma Yoga, the path of action. Because we have form this path is essential; it is important that we act with intelligence and wisdom. A problem with karma/action is that we focus on an end goal, and as such our joy is directly tied to a result. Disappointment arises when our desire is not realised. This happens quite naturally. We need not be downtrodden by it.
The way to return to Source and live completely in the knowing that we are Union is to keep focus on the process. Yes, we still see the goal but our energy is invested in the current movement and moment. This resonates powerfully with me. I realised a couple years ago that a key to ultra-endurance training is that even though there’s an aim to each long session or race, peace only exists when my focus is on each swim stroke, push of the bike pedal, and running stride. When my mind drifts to the finish line, as it naturally does, then tension arises in the body, mind and spirit, at which point joy and efficiency are reduced.
As I meditated on the wisdom of Karma Yoga tears began to well up. They felt exactly as when near Sri Ramana’s samadhi, or when gazing upon his image—literally or in the mind’s eye. I’m beginning to understand that what I may be feeling is his transmission of Union. It’s too much to hold inside and is released through tears and a presence in my heart. I welcome this powerful resonance.
✌️ ∙ 🌱 ∙ 🙏