Author: Ramakrishna

Ramakrishna

They Wander In Many Disguises
Katha

They Wander In Many Disguises

Once, a God-intoxicated sadhu came to the Kali temple. One day he received no food, but, though feeling hungry, he did not ask for any. Seeing a dog eating the remnants of a feast thrown away in a corner, he went there and embracing the dog, said, “Brother, how is it that you eat alone, without giving me a share?” So saying, he began to eat along with the dog.  Having finished his meal in this strange company, the sadhu entered the temple of Mother Kali and prayed with such an ecstasy of devotion as to send a thrill throughout the temple. When, after finishing his prayer he was going to leave, I asked Hriday to watch and follow the man and to communicate to me what he might say. Hriday followed him for some distance, when the sadhu turning round, enquired, “Why do you follow me?” Hriday said, “Revered sir, give me some teaching!” The sadhu replied, “When the water of this ditch and yonder Ganges appear as one and the same in your sight, when the sound of this flageolet and the noise of that crowd have no distinction to your ear, then you will reach the state of true knowledge.” So saying, he hastened away. When I heard this from Hriday I remarked, “That man has reached the true state of ecstasy, the true state of knowledge.” The Siddhas roam about sometimes like guileless children, sometimes like ghouls and at other times like mad men. Indeed, they wander in many disguises.   From Tales and Parables of Sri Ramakrishna
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The Parable Of The Milkmaid
Katha

The Parable Of The Milkmaid

A milkmaid used to supply milk to a Brahmin priest living on the other side of a river. Owing to the irregularities of the boat service, the milkmaid could not supply him milk punctually every day. Once, being rebuked for her going late, the poor woman said, “What can I do? I start early from the house, but have to wait for a long time at the river bank for the boatman and the passenger.” The priest exclaimed, “Woman! There are people who cross the ocean of life by uttering the name of God, and can’t you cross this little river?” The simple-hearted woman became very glad at heart on learning this easy means of crossing the river. From the following day, she started to supply the milk early in the morning, as she was supposed to. One day the priest said to the woman, “How is it that you are no longer late now-a-days?” The milkmaid replied, “I cross the river by uttering the name of the Lord as you told me to do, and don’t stand now in need of a boatman.” The priest could not believe this. He said, “Can you show me how you cross the river?” The woman took him with her and began to walk over the water. Looking behind the woman saw the priest in a sad plight and said, “How is it, Sir, that you are uttering the name of the God with your mouth, but at the same time with your hands you are trying to keep your cloth untouched by water? You do not fully rely on Him.” Ramakrishna Paramahamsa once said, “You can force your demands on God, he is in no way a stranger to you, he is your eternal companion.”
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