Understand, if something can be added to me today, tomorrow it can be taken away! If something is not true today, how can it become true tomorrow? “Upaadhi”! That is why, in Sanskrit we have a beautiful word – “Upaadhi”. Means…..it has two meanings: “Titles” and “Disease”. “Titles” and “Disease”, both are called by the word “Upaadhi”. “Rich man” – title. This title, that title. All these “Titles”, and “Disease”, both are one and the same! Understand, what I am talking is not impractical. Listen! It is verily practical for you to practice in your life every day. Our elders have practiced all these.
One elderly woman who used to sell buttermilk, ghee, butter, in my native village, Tiruvannamalai, she used to come to Annamalai Swamigal, Ramana Maharshi’s disciple. She used to come to Annamalai Swamigal, and she will offer every day a little buttermilk or butter to Annamalai Swamigal and force him to eat. Literally she will sit, even if it is two hours or three hours! Till he picks up the glass (of buttermilk) and puts a little in his mouth she will sit and pray to Annamalai Swamigal. Annamalai Swamigal is a great enlightened being. And he will never budge for anybody! But, somehow, I have seen, he never deprived her, denied her. He may wait for some time, half-an-hour or one hour; but he will not miss without accepting what she offers. And I have seen many times, I will take something, but he will never touch it; he will give it to others. He will not put it in his mouth. Rarely he will take it and put it in his mouth. Otherwise, he will give it to others. And I also will go there for what he gives! HAHAHAHA! He used to give a lot of candy; so I will go there, as a kid. But, this elderly lady, whatever may be the time, he will never deprive her, deny her. He will accept at least a little bit of what she brought.
One day I was just sitting in front of him and looking at his grace. Actually, he is an elderly person. You can never understand the kind of grace his body radiates! Just with one loin cloth and one small towel, he will be sitting and staring at that Arunachala Hill. The Samadhi can be seen with the eyes! I can say, looking at the Master’s form when he is in Samadhi is literally like drinking Samadhi through eyes! “Drinking Samadhi through eyes”, that is the word I will use! Drinking Samadhi through eyes! So, I was just drinking Samadhi through my eyes in front of him.
That elderly lady brought a little butter that day and he took a little and put it in his mouth. And, very unexpectedly, he took a little and put it in my mouth also! He directly fed with his own hand, putting it in my mouth! I just took it and then….could not understand. I was staring at him, why he did this, because he was not that kind of a person who does this kind of a physically expressing love. He is not that kind of a person. Arunagiri Yogishwara was that kind of a person: hugging, or physically feeding, that touching, through body showing the love and feeling-connection. Arunagiri Yogishwara was that kind of a person. But Annamalai Swamigal is not that kind of a person. He is a kind of a dry Vedanti; no physical gestures to demonstrate love; no physical way of demonstrating love. So, I was wondering, ‘Hmmmm…..what is going on?!’
He himself started telling me, ‘Hey’, in Tamil he said, ‘ரிபு கீதை கடைஞ்சு கொண்டு வந்த அம்ரிதம்டா இது!’ (‘Ribhu Gitai kadainju kondu vandha amritham da idhu!’). Means, that lady who makes the butter, while she is churning, she chants Ribhu Gita constantly and makes that butter. Because of that it has become nectar! Please understand, an ordinary village lady who sells butter and buttermilk and makes her life, when she is able to establish herself in the state of Completion, why not we? Annamalai Swamigal says, ‘While she is churning the milk……’
In Indian villages, they will keep a big pot and put a spindle called “maththu” (மத்து) and put a rope and churn. Around two-three hours you will have to churn, and the butter will be churned out, and the butter they will collect and put it in a cloth and squeeze to take the water part out, and then it will become solid butter, and they will bring it and sell.
He (Annamalai Swamigal) says, ‘She is so sincerely singing the Ribhu Gita constantly and churning. Now she has become that truth while she is churning. So, that butter also has become nectar filled with that truth!’
And, I really wanted to tell you, at least for the next two-and-a-half days after that butter had gone into my mouth, my body, I was in that Samadhi, the same state in which Annamalai Swamigal was! Two-and-a-half days!
See, all I want to tell you is, your outer conditions don’t matter for you to be established in the cognition of Completion. You can be as simple as that village buttermilk seller, old elderly woman; that doesn’t matter; you can be established in the space of Completion. Let the cognition of Completion penetrate your every decision and action. When Existence teaches all of us how to live…….