Misc Incidents

Once a topmost official in the Government asked Maha Periyava,

“What is the way out (‘gati’) for me?”

Maha Periyava said, “Once a goat has been caught by the tiger it can
never escape its clutches. So, one on whom ‘Guru kataksha’ (glance) has
fallen he cannot escape it.” The official said, ‘I am not a goat but a
wild buffalo. The wild buffalo escapes tiger’s jaws!’ Maha Periyava
said, “But the the scar of the attack has been left by the tiger. And
that will work!” This person then asked, “Point out to me all the fake
swamijis. I will put them all behind bars,” and further inquired of
Maha Periyava, “How to differentiate the good from the bad?”

Maha Periyava said, “Once while camping near Satara I had hidden three
ripe mangoes in a basket full of unripe mangoes. When a child came in I
asked it to pick a mango from the basket. It picked up a ripe one! A
child could pick up the ripe mango from amongst a basket full of unripe
ones. Just as the way a child knows what is ripe and what is unripe, so
too would those who go out in search of Truth recognize a true Mahan at
some point of their life.”

A devotee of Maha Periyava, was in tears as He did not visit her home.
Maha Periyava said to her, “Why do you invite me into a home built of
bricks? I will come and sit in the home of your ‘hrudaya’ (heart)!”
What wonderful words? How could he coin such words out of the blue?

Once, Maha Periyava addressed a big gathering, “All of you have
assembled here eagerly to listen to me. You have extended a big welcome
to me here and all of you are also lending assistance to the Mutt.
Everybody says that I must speak something. Instead, I feel that I can
spend the time better in meditating on Ambal (Devi). What is the use of
mere words? I feel that I should meditate on Ambal. There is no use of
offering any ‘upadesa’ (counsel) to you all without doing any dhyana of
Ambal. And again there is no need for words once I successfully
complete the dhyana of Ambal and attain Her! This is because just by
seeing me all of you will be transformed! Therefore, words are useless
under all circumstances! ”

Once, Maha Periyava performed a detailed ‘upanyas’ on Adi Sankara under
the heading ‘Egoless Acharyal’. Once, while speaking with His close

Maha Periyava said, ‘It is said that sanyasis (ascetics) should not
possess any desire. But, I have a desire!’ When the devotees asked,
‘What is it?’

Maha Periyava said in all humility, ‘I desire that none in the world should know that such a sanyasi lives!’

Further, in a ‘Deepavali’ special issue brought out by a weekly many
years back, the replies of dignitaries from various walks of life to
the question, ‘what is the lesson learnt by you from the world?’ had
been published. This question was placed before Maha Periyava also.
Maha Periyava said to them, “Every moment the world is teaching me some
lesson. But only I do not possess the required maturity to learn!” This
shows His humility.

Once, when Paul Brunton (a foreigner who came to India seeking a
spiritual Master and the author of the famous book ‘Search in secret
India’) sought ‘upadesa’ from Maha Periyava, Maha Periyava offered him
the wonderful ‘upadesa’, “Be humble! You will find what you seek!”

Just through deep continuous thought (‘smaran’) of Mahatmas (‘punya purusha’) we will attain their state.”

We also give below an interesting incident that Sri Ekamram (a
householder who had been a personal attendant to Maha Periyava for
nearly three decades) narrated, to show the value placed by Maha
Periyava to all the work of the Mutt without any difference of high or

The different duties in the Mutt were allotted to different staff. As
such it fell on a young man to wash the vessels used in the Sri
Chandramouleeswara Puja. One day this young man while washing the
vessels thought aloud, this is the lowliest and worst of all the
services rendered in this place! This grouse of the young man fell on
the ears of Maha Periyava who happened to pass by. The next day Maha
Periyava instructed all the staff of the Mutt to assemble in His

When all had reported, Maha Periyava said, ‘There are innumerable
people who consider it the highest of blessings to wash the vessels
used in Sri Chandramouleeswara Puja. But here is this young man who
feels otherwise. Therefore, today he should be spared of this duty and
all the rest of you should each wash a vessel!’ And that day even the
manager, who was only a year or two younger to Maha Periyava and a
highly learned and intelligent man, lent a hand in washing the Puja
vessels of Sri Chandramouleeswara.

The young man quickly realized his mistake and fell at the feet of Maha
Periyava. From then onwards he attended to his duty with all enthusiasm
and reverence.

Categories: Devotee Experiences


2 replies

  1. A very interesting article on Mahaperiyava. This is an excellent blog…I will keep coming back for more 🙂

  2. speechless and only speechless…….May he bless everyone…..

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