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In his initial encounter with it he had been impressed by Japan's greatness. But now in Japan he was exposed to something completely different in the rampant nationalism that he saw in the country. This led him to write a series of speeches that he delivered in America and later compiled in Nationalism In addition, he lectured in America on topics such as the goals of education, self-identity, and on the larger world.

These were published in the book titled Personality The next major event in Rabindranath's life occurred in when he repudiated the knighthood that had been conferred on him by the British Government in On 13 April the British Police had fired on a demonstration in Punjab's Jallianwalabagh, where many Indians had assembled to protest against the passage of the Rowlatt Act. Hundreds of people were killed in this incident.

Rabindranath wrote a letter to the Viceroy in protest and informed him of his decision to resign his knighthood. One consequence of his American trip was that Rabindranath now recast his ideas about the school in Santiniketan in the light of his recent experience. Now Visva-Bharati acquired its complete shape. Rabindranath transformed the institution into a centre for higher learning.

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His aim was to establish a complete and comprehensive system of education that would combine Indian philosophy with the best of international education. Here he made provisions for the study of music and painting while arranging for more traditional forms of study and research. In the poet established the Visva-Bharati Board to run the institute according to specific guidelines.

He eventually handed over its management to the government so that Visva-Bharati become a permanent institution. Rabindranath also established at this time a full-fledged organisation for agricultural and rural development called Sriniketan in the village of Shurul, two miles away from Santiniketan. Schemes for developing animal husbandry, weaving, agriculture, and cottage industries were undertaken by this organisation.

In addition, projects to improve the lot of the villagers such as a village library, hospital, cooperative bank, tube-well irrigation, and an industrial estate were adopted. For Rabindranath one goal of Visva-Bharati was to adopt a broad outlook and the other was to promote universalism.

It was because they were inspired by this vision that people like Pearson and the agricultural scientist Leonard Elmhurst came to Santiniketan to serve the institution. In this context, Elmhurst's financial contribution to Santiniketan is worth mentioning. Sriniketan was established and run because of generous and sustained funding provided by Elmhurst's wife, Dorothy Straight.

Taken together, Santiniketan asram and School and Visva-Bharati are the main embodiments of Rabindranath's educational philosophy. Of the three, the first is more purely spiritual; the second one is devoted to giving students an education and introducing them to a school of life, and the third is designed to establish a bridge between the east and the west through humanistic and useful study.

In addition, he wanted to unite purposeful education with the pursuit of the ideal life. The education imposed by the British on India at this time was one that was divorced from the realities of life. To overcome this split, he had established Sriniketan. The poet managed to associate many educationists and scholars both from home and abroad with Santiniketan.

Harry Timbers, etc. The poet also became an intimate friend of the world famous philosopher Romain Rolland. The educational ideals of Santiniketan are a manifestation of Rabindranath's humanistic outlook on life. He has detailed the philosophy that lay behind the establishment of this institution in his essay, 'The Centre of Indian Culture'.

He read this paper to gatherings at home and abroad. Wherever he went in India, he informed people about the institution that he had built and asked for the help of everyone he met. Some distinguished faculty members of Santiniketan tried to assist the poet in his efforts to develop it throughout their lives.

In the poet travelled to England once more and then moved on to France, Holland and Belgium before landing in America. Everywhere he lectured, he mentioned Santiniketan so that people would know about the institution. But his experience in America this time was not altogether a happy one. He also visited Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, and Sweden in this trip.

In Europe he was feted like a king.

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The speeches he gave on this journey are collected in the volume titled Creative Unity In it are echoed his messages of the importance of the unity of mankind and of the necessity of having an international outlook. Rabindranath returned to India from Europe in By this time the nationalist movement had taken a new turn in his country. Mahatama Gandhi had come to India then from South Africa to lead the movement. On 6 September , Gandhi and Rabindranath had a historic meeting in Jorasanko.

When in Gandhi was on a fast in a jail, Rabindranath composed the song that begins in English translation as 'When life is shrunk, come where compassion flows' to induce him to break his fast. From the time he had begun travelling all over the world, Rabindranath had started to think about the problems it was facing. Wondering about ways of preventing humanity from getting embroiled in global conflicts, he began to indicate ways of doing so in his lectures. In between his travels he composed Palataka and Purabi , two books of verse, and Muktadhara , a play. In the poet travelled to the Far East and visited China and Japan.

It was during this period that he composed his famous play raktakarabi which was originally published in prabasi. He had been unable to travel to Peru later that year to attend the centenary celebrations of the country's independence, having had to stop his journey in Argentina because of poor health. Here he met the erudite Spanish poet Victoria Ocampo. Ocampo offered to host the poet's stay in Buenos Aires and look after his welfare. Purabi is thus dedicated to her. From Argentina the poet returned to India via Italy.

In and he set out for Europe. Having toured many countries of the continent, he eventually returned to India via Java. In Java he saw the remnants of ancient Indian civilization and wrote about them in his Java-Yatrir Patra. Rabindranath visited Canada in Here he delivered a famous lecture titled The Philosophy of Leisure. From Canada he went to Japan for the third time. Between and he published a number of famous works. In addition, he wrote numerous essays and speeches that he was invited to read in all sorts of assemblies and events. In he was invited to Oxford to deliver the Hibbert lectures, a lecture series where leading thinkers of the world were invited to be speakers.

The lecture earned him a place among the leading thinkers of his age. At the age of sixty Rabindranath started to paint. It all began from his doodling and the way he used to cross out things in drafting his writings. His paintings pleased art lovers in Paris, England, Germany, Denmark, and other countries. Around this time, he went to Russia.

Looking at the socialist revolution in Russia after the First World War and the actions undertaken by the country then the poet was highly impressed. His experience of the trip is recorded in his Russiar Chithi He then toured America and eventually returned home in January Rabindranath took two more overseas trips afterwards, one of them to Iran and Iraq in , and the other one to Ceylon in The University of Calcutta honored Rabindranath in a number of ways throughout his life.

In he was the first recipient of the 'Jagattarini Padak' awarded by the university. In , he delivered the 'Kamala Lecture' here on the 'Religion of Man'. He also accepted the appointment of a professor in the university and gave a few lectures in this capacity.

In he made history by delivering the convocation address of the university in Bengali. Till the last years of his life Rabindranath continued to compose countless poems, songs, dance dramas, critical essays, novels and prose pieces. In the work he did in the last decade of his literary career, he showed the impact of the new age in literature. At this time he composed fifteen volumes of verse.

Among them Punashcha , Shes Saptak , Patraput and Shyamali are basically prose poems. Now there was a profound change too in the poet's mentality. The poet became more conscious about adopting a scientific outlook and seemed to have become more detached from worldly concerns. The poems increasingly became more spare and meditative. He appeared to be thinking more and more about death. These preoccupations are reflected in the volume titled Prantik But his imagination also took in the world of men and women, that of fairy tales, and seemed bent on the pursuit of the inner being as in the songs of the mystical Baul singers of Bengal.

He also went back to his childhood memories as well as the pain of the oppressed and of ordinary people. He continued, too, with his literary experiments and dedicated himself to the creation of new forms. For example, he now wrote some prose songs. He composed some wonderful dance dramas such as Chitrangada , Shyama , and Chandalika Images of nature are given musical form in Nataraj , Navin , and Shravangatha The novels that he wrote in the last decades of his life are Dui Bon , Malavcha , and Char Adhyay As he came to the end of his life Rabindranath began thinking about many complex scientific issues.

The fruit of his interest in such issues is the collection of essays Visva-Parichay The poet had been fascinated by scientific studies from his childhood. He now wrote quite a few essays on biology, physics, and astronomy. His interest in science had been further stimulated in the first part of his life because of his intimacy with the eminent Bengali scientist Jagadishchandra Bose.

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His poetry reflects his awareness of the latest developments in science and philosophy. While in Europe he had the occasion to discuss scientific issues with Einstein. His nature poetry articulates his awareness of the scientific laws at work behind the creation of the universe. In the stories collected in Se , Tin Sabgi , and Galpasalpa , he devised excellent narratives centreed on the exploits of science and scientists.

Before his death, however, Rabindranath, truly a poet with an international perspective, witnessed the grave crisis of values in the world manifested in the Second World War. Nevertheless, Rabindranath continued to believe in the greatness of mankind. His faith in humanity is reflected in the volume Kalantar and Sabhyatar Sabkat The latter embodies his final message for humanity and is based on a speech he read in the last birthday anniversary organised for him when he had completed his eightieth year.

In the poet had become seriously ill while on a visit to Kalimpong. From then on his health declined steadily. He died on 7 August 22 Shravan in the Jorasanko Tagore's home. Rabindranath was a poet of inexhaustible vitality, immense humanism, and a writer enthralled by nature's timeless beauty. He saw death as a stopping station on the way to eternity. Life and death and the world itself were manifested to him as one. Toggle navigation Banglapedia. Main page Random page Contact. Jump to: navigation , search. Tagore, Rabindranath.

Are any happier today. Through words they have heard you say? Life were not worth living If no one were the better For having met you on the way. And known the sunshine of your stay. He is the supreme spirit which informs All subtle essences! He bloweth with the winds, rolls with the waves. He is Prajapati that fills the world. I said to her, ''I desire to meet thee" She replied: " If such is thy desire meet thyself" I said to her "I desire to sit by thee" She replied: "If such is thy desire, sit by thyself" I said to her, "I am thou and thou art everything" She smiled and replied: "Blessed be thy knowledge, it is so" — From, Persian Of the Sadhu, beloved of his heart, he wrote in the "Stamped Deed of Progress," his very last article in Urdu, as follows: Does the ochre-dyed robe make one a Sadhu?

One does see the God-dyed hearts under the ochre- dyed robes at times. The "madman" mad after Rama flashes therein. But everybody knows that his beauty-illumined consciousness is not restricted to the robes of a Sadhu! That true liberty is not addicted to any vices of good manners, styles or fashions of clothes and colours.

The heights to 65 The Story Of Swami Rama reach which the very feet of man tremble to scale, the heads feel giddy, there flashes the light, there comes the signal of this mystic lantern. This sun shines on the snows of the Himalayas and on the streets of the common cities. The man of illumined consciousness is seen in the prison house and even in the still worse prison of the body, self-fettered by his very hands, but there lie his fetters in the prison, while he roams free in the infinite!

In the dark cells, the man of God with his hand in the hand of God, though cast a prisoner is free. There roams he in all the six worlds! In the thickness of the crowd and its noise, a student while poring on his books intently, suddenly reads a word which cannot be written, and there he passes out of all limits and the book lies there forever waiting for him!

One goes out for a walk, fortunately alone. The moonlight is in its silver flood, the evening breeze is blowing, and there is the redness of the evening in the western sky, and there is the redness of wine suffusing all within! How suddenly comes the elevation! The passenger has just boarded a Railway train, and is going on a journey. The wheels are rolling and the train is thundering! Just as he throws down 66 The Story Of Swami Rama the glass-pane of the carriage window, there enters the Divine Bridegroom into his heart!

The passenger took a ticket to a destination, but his soul soared away to God-known, Unknown destination. The renunciation in bliss, the richness in trance besieged the man. This is the true Sadhu! The Sadhus of India are a unique phenomenon peculiar to this country. As a green mantle gathers over standing water so have the Sadhus collected over India, full fifty-two lacs by this time. Some of them are indeed beautiful lotuses - the glory of the lake!

But a vast majority are unhealthy scum. Let the water begin to flow, let there be marching life in the people, the scum will soon be carried off. The Sadhus were the natural outcome of the past dark ages of Indian History. But now-a-days the general spirit of reform, inasmuch as it is changing the feelings and tastes of the householders, is affecting the Sadhus also.

There are springing up Sadhus who instead of remaining as suckers and parasites to the tree of Nationality, are anxious to make of their body and mind humble manure for the tree, if nothing more. After trying to define the true Sadhu and trying to impress upon his country the vanity of having 5,, ochre-robed monks he says: 67 The Story Of Swami Rama If any one speak against the true Sadhu, Faqir, Saint, he would assuredly lose his power of speech! The hand that would strike the Sadhu would be palsied! He who would think against the Saint would lose his brain!

It is impossible for Rama to speak againt the true Sadhu. True Sadhu and a thought against him ever starting in Rama's mind! It is impossible even in Rama's dream. When Shiva is in Samadhi, then all the wealth and prosperity of the world, the victory and luck, the ghosts and spirits in Shiva's eternal cometry of names and forms begin to dance round him and decorate the very presence of Shiva Shiva, Sahib- Dil, the Master of Self.

O criminal! My darling! It is written that Bhrigu the Brahman kicked the left side of Vishnu, viz. He who renounces self, obtains God. He who runs after self, be he a king, ho is a beggar kicked from pillar to post. It is the Law. It is not the monopoly of the ochre-robed monks, it is the light, it is for all. Moslems, Christians, Jews, Sikhs, Parsis; man, woman, child, low or high need this one Light of Truth for their beatitude. Without this sunlight, the shivering due to cold cannot be cured!

It is essential for all to be educated and not essential for every one to be a professor. To know this True Self, this soul, is the necessity for every one to be happy, but to lose oneself day and night in this spiritual ecstasy is the share of a few, the true Faqirs. For him in vain the envious seasons roll. Views all creation; and he loves it all And blesses it, and calls it very good. For example, he begins the book with a long poem To You. And he says: You are my Krishna, my Rama. Away these attires of colours and forms and names.

Away with these hopes and despairs. This old age is my cap wearing of which makes me invisible. It is my disguise. The Eyes of the Blind is another poem. The injury that must have killed me, cured me; I, a prisoner, a slave, became a free man. The Sadhus run after God and do many things — close their eyes, shut their mouths and meditate — but I found Him while living comfortably in my own house.

He has written a very fine piece under the title The Misbehaviour of the Moon. In my wayward wanderings. One evening on the edge of a lake, I saw the cottage of a weaver. And by the cottage stood a young maiden she was the daughter of the weaver. And the moonlight began Its silver flow. And she was devotmng the moon with her eyes! The moon leapt from the windows of her eyes, into the sacred temple of youth.

And there the moon melted away in the clear lake of her heart! O Moon! Entering without permission into other people's homes? Like this! O bold Moon! The waters of the lake have merely thy face reflected. But thou hast made the maiden's heart thy home.

The mystery that his telescope reveals not. The solution that the mathematician finds not. The riddle that Astronomy unravels not. What is this calm luxury in that little heart? And why stray est thou in the huts of the poor and the lowly like this? Tlie reference is to Kabir and Kabir's self-realised daughter 72 The Story Of Swami Rama From what has already been said it in clear, that though his main theme of Self or Atman or God, for he uses all these three words in one and the same sense, was characteristically Hindu and Vedantic, yet his own practice was fed by the glowing life of the Punjab itself, its intense emotional literature of the men of God- consciousness, like BuUahshah, and other Punjabi poets, and the galvanising vitality of the thoughts of the Persian masters like Shams Tabrez and Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi, and still more refreshing and life-giving reflex currents of thought of the Western Poets like Shelley, Emerson, Thoreau and Goethe.

His intellect was nourished primarily on the Philosophy of Vedanta as interpreted by Western criticism, and, as it seems later on, his study of Vedanta was based primarily on the Philosophy of Kant which he had mastered. He had read Hegel and Spinoza. And his scientific proclivity of acknowledging religion in the terms of actual practical life, owes much to the study of the literature of evolution written by Darwin and Haeckel.

Like a living tree, he drew his food, so to say, from the literature of the whole world, though he was deeply imbued with the Illusion-Maya of the Indian Philosopher. The 73 The Story Of Swami Rama apparent contradictions of the statements made by him, all the more adorn his spiritual genius, and this contradiction is the contradiction inherent in life itself. Life alone defines in its infinite self-contradiction the Reality and its Self-Realisation. Our definitions are all abortive, being intellectual justifications from our relative standpoints which in themselves never touch life but at one infinitesimal unknown point.

The contradictory statements made by poets, like Swami Rama, do not come strictly under philosophy, and no true philosophy can undertake to reconcile their contradictions. Their self- contradictoriness in itself is an evidence of an exalted self-realisation, or as Miss E. Underhill puts it "it is proof of the richness and balance of his spiritual experience.

These are the blossoms of his thought in divine inspired bloom. Renounce within all desires and live repeating OM. Without paying the price, you cannot reach God, you cannot regain your birthright. Purity of heart means making yourself free of all clingings to the objects of the world.

Renunciation, nothing short of it. Gain this purity and you see God. Could you love God with even half the love that yon show your wife, you would realise the Truth this second. Who puts you in bondage? The very moment you cast over-hoard these desires, clingings, love, hatred and attachments and also throw off even the desire for light and chant OMfor a second, you free yourself from all bondage and become well- balanced in equilibrium, nothing of yourself left with that person, with that body, or with that object.

Sit still, chant OM and then think who is within you. Feel that, and rejoice in your own divinity and desire pleasure from within you, enjoy happiness of your Atman. Throw aside all abnormal desires and inordinate wishes. All religion is simply an attempt to unveil ourselves and to explain our self. The votaries of all religious creeds can at times be en rapport with Divinity and lift off the veil, thick or thin from before their eyes for so long as they remain in communication with the supreme Being.

Such a union with God is religion. Let my body become His and let His Self become my self. Know that you stand above all wants and needs. Just sing, just chant OM. Why did Krishna kiss the flute and raise it to such a position? The flute's answer was: "I have one virtue, one good point I have. I have made myself void of all matter". Thus give up all selfishness, all selfish connections, all thoughts of mine and thine, rise above it, wooing God, wooing Him as no worldly lover wooes his lady love, hungering and thirsting after the realisation of the True Self In this state of mind, in this peace of heart with soul, pure soul, begin to chant the Mantram OM, begin to sing the sacred syllable OM.

Do any kind of wrong, do any mischief, harbour in your mind any kind of wrong, do these wrong deeds, commit these sins even at a place where you are sure nobody will catch you or find you out The wages of sin is death. In the most solitary caves commit a sin and you will in 11 The Story Of Swami Rama no time he astonished to see that the very grass under your feet stands up and hears testimony against you.

You will in time see that the very walls, the very trees have tongues to speak. Harhour impurity and you must suffer the consequences. Even though we may not he ahle to prove the virtue of this Mantram hy the logic of the world, yet there is no denial of the powerful effect which this Mantram, chanted in a proper way, produces on the character of a man.

All the knowledge of the sacred scriptures of the Hindus was ohtained when the writers of these volumes had thrown themselves into ecstasies hy the humming of this syllahle. All the Vedanta, nay all the philosophy of the Hindus is simply an exposition of this syllahle OM. OM has a charm ahout it, an efficiency, a virtue in it which directly hrings the mind of one who chants it under control, which directly hrings all feelings and alt 78 The Story Of Swami Rama thought into a state of harmony, brings peace and rest to the soul and puts the mind in a state where it is one with God Science may not he able to explain this hut this is a fact which can he verified hy experiment.

Woe unto science if it goes against the truth connected with the efficiency of the sacred syllahle OM. When there is no duality in the mind, then all ohject- consciousness is at rest and thus the point of inspiration is reached. When Tennyson is heyond all idea of Lord Tennyson, then alone he is the poet Tennyson. When Berkeley is no proprietor, copy-righting Bishop, then alone is he the thinker Berkeley.

When some grand and wonderful work is done through us, it is folly to take the credit for it, hecause when it was heing done, the credit- securing ego was entirely ahsent, else the heauty of the deed should have heen marredl The real self which is knowledge ahsolute and power ahsolute is the only stern Reality, hefore which the apparent reality of the world melts away I OM is the name of this Reality, Realise it and sing in the language of feeling, sing it with your acts.

Sing it through every pore of your hody. Let it course through your veins, let it pulsate in your 79 The Story Of Swami Rama bosom, let every part of your body and every drop of your blood tingle with the truth that you are the Light of lights, the Sun of suns, the Ruler of the Universe, the Lord of lords, the True Self I Om represents 0-Am, or I am He.

Om represents the pure idea of I am. A man, who sings Om in all these ways, chants it with his lips, feels it with his heart and sings it through action, makes his life a continuous song. To everybody he is God. But if you cannot chant it with feeling nor chant it with your acts do not give it up, go on chanting it with the lips. Even that is not without use. But chanting it through feelings and actions would naturally follow if you commence humming it with the mouth.

How to make the mind rise higher into the celestial regions, to make the soul soar away up to the throne of God? When the benign light of the rising sun or the setting sun is falling upon the translucent lids of half- closed eyes, we begin humming the syllable OM, we sing it in the language of feeling. I am the Unseen spirit which forms all subtle essences. I blow with the winds, roll with the waves, I am the man and woman, youth and maid! The babe new born, the withered ancient propped upon his staff! I am whatever is. The black bee, the tiger and the fish.

The green bird with red eyes, the tree and the grass. The cloud that hath lightning in it. The seasons and the seas! In me they are, in me begin and end. The Truth is that you cannot serve God and Mammon. You cannot serve two masters. You cannot enjoy this world and also realise Truth. You cannot enjoy the world, you cannot enter into petty low, worldly, carnal, sensuous desires and at the same time lay claim to Divine Realisation.

O dear people! You can never love anything so long as you perceive ugliness. Love means perception of beauty. Fighting with darkness will not remove it. Bring the light in and the darkness is over.

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All that is necessary is the positive, cheerful, hopeful, loving, encouraging attitude. The best criticism is to make people feel from within what you wish to make them realise from without. All grumbling is as futile and fatuous as to say 'Oh! Why is the lily not an oak? The beautiful Joseph says to his apologising brothers: "It is not ye that threw me into the well.

The Lord's law in order to exalt me in Egypt, found no better levers than my own brothers. If love breaks law it is the fulfilment of the law. Love is the only Divine Law. Owning through Love is Divine and owning through Law is illegal! Great notes of splendid music come out of the organ, but so long as the child wants to keep the organ to itself and does not want the great organist or musician to handle the organ, only notes of discord, will be emanated by the 82 The Story Of Swami Rama organ ; so long as this self, this false ego, this unreal self, which is the enjoying self is present, and wants to keep hold of the body and does not let go this body, through this instrument of the unmusical body only notes of discord will come out.

Inspiration is God's doing. When the little self gives up possession of the body, the person is inspired. During the first thirty years of his life. The ebb of the tide he was iifce this small piece of iron, nobody knew him : he was the son of a carpenter, he was a very poor boy, the child of an unknown mother, he was looked down upon. Now this piece of iron got itself connected with the true self, the spirit, that is the magnet, the source of attraction, the centre of all life and power ; he got connected with Divinity, with Truth, with Realisation, Power and what became of it?

That piece of iron was also magnetised, he became a magnet, and people were attracted to him; disciples and many people were drawn to him, they naturally began to bow down before him. There came a time towards the end of his life when the Christ, called the piece of iron, was detached from the 83 The Story Of Swami Rama magnet.

What happened then to the Spirit? The very moment all the pieces of iron which were attached to it fell off; all his disciples left him ; the same people of Jerusalem who loved and worshipped him before, all those who had received him royally before, those who had decorated the city in his honour, all left him; his power was gone, just as the power of the magnet being taken away from the piece of iron, its power is gone, it is no longer possessed of the properties of a magnet.

When his disciples left him, when those eleven left him, so much did the people turn from him that they wanted to wreak vengeance upon him, that they wanted to crucify him and that was the time when Christ said: " O Father! This shows that the connection was broken. See what the life of Christ teaches you.

If teaches you that all the power, the virtue of Christ lay in his connection with or attachment to the true spirit or Magnet. When the solid body of Christ was attached to the true spirit, the Magnet, the body of Christ was a magnet also, but when the body of Christ was detached from the true Spirit or Magnet, then his power was gone, his disciples and followers left him.

Now Christ regained his union with the Spirit before his death, you know Christ did not die when he was crucified. This is a fact which may be proved. He was in a state called Samadhi, a state where all life functions stop, where the pulse beats not, where the blood 84 The Story Of Swami Rama apparently leaves the veins, where all signs of life are no more, when the hods is as it were crucified. But there was no toiling and rowing for the Master. Why should not such a man sleep in the midst of the storm, knowing He could walk upon the waters.

Krishna, Chaitanya, Jesus, Tulsidas, Shakespeare, and Ramakrishna, were inspired in as much as they were lovelorn. Love divested of all carnality is spiritual illumination. How blessed is he whose property is stolen away! Thrice blessed is he whose wife runs away, provided by such means he is brought in direct touch with the All-love. Abraham, says the Muhammadan tradition, at one time desired to take a sea voyage. Khizra or Neptune, offered his services as an humble captain of the boat.

Abraham 85 The Story Of Swami Rama at first gave his foolish consent; but on reconsideration, he begged pardon ofKhizra, saying; ''My most gracious brother, excuse me please, I would prefer to have my boat without a captain, ferried directly by the hand of love. If you, the Lord of the Seas, take the oar, it is safe riding; but, ah!

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It is too safe; it will make me rely upon you, and bar me from direct dependence on God. Please do not stay between me and God. There is more joy to me in resting directly on God's bosom than even the bosom of my brother Khizra. Roar on. Oh thunder! Rage on. Oh storm! Howl on. Oh winds! I thank you, I thank you. O blessed Thunder, you frighten delicate Love to cling to me for a moment.

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  • How infinitely sweet are the bitters of life I when out of its grapes we can press the sweet wine of delicious pangs of God-Love! Take my hands and let them be Engaged in sweating. Truth, for Thee. Did you ever have the privilege of being lost, nay raised, in love, unselfish love, giving all to love? Then you must he in a position to appreciate sentiments like the following: ''Soft skin ofTaiffor Thy sandals take.

    And of our heart-strings fitting latchets make And tread on lips which yearn to touch those feet. The limitation of vision being overcome, there remains nothing ugly. When everything is my own self, how anything could be other than sweetness condensed. Self is Anand Bliss , therefore, self-realisation is equal to the realisation of the whole world as Bliss-crystallised, or perception of the powers of Nature as my own hand and feet, and feeling the universe as my own sweet Self embodied.

    True purity is that where all beauty is absorbed in me and I feel and enjoy my spiritual oneness with all to such an extent that to talk or think of meeting any object sounds like a painful hint of separation. The sun, the moon, the stars, the hills, and the plains. Are not these, O Soul, the visions of Him who reigns? Children have a common practical religion of love, play and innocence all over the world. This unity comes about by the natural faithfulness of each child to his dear sweet self. To seek happiness is in its essence strictly speaking religion, but the mode of realizing religion involved in it may be compared to getting a peep into the Darbar through the grating of a dirty gutter.

    They resemble a flash of lightning which though identical in its nature with broad daylight, does far more harm than good, or, more appropriately, they are like the stealing of fire from heaven by Prometheus. We read in the Bible that the Pharisees were very pious, their acts and deeds were very pious, but they lacked that tender, kind, and loving spirit; these people had a censuring, fault-finding spirit in them, which kept them 88 The Story Of Swami Rama farther away from Christ than Mary Magdalene, whose character was not the purest, a woman who was not immaculate.

    This Mary Magdalene had not in her this fault-finding, this censuring, this blaming spirit, she had that spirit of lave in her and she was nearer to Truth, she was nearer to the Kingdom of Heaven than the Pharisees. If you make yourselves this second divested of all desires, if you free yourselves of all worldly clingings, you know that every desire of yours chops off a part of yourself, leaves you only a small fraction of yourself.

    How seldom it is that we meet a whole man! A whole man is an inspired man, a whole is the Truth. Every wish or clinging seems to add to your stock, but in reality makes you a fraction, an insignificant portion of yourself. The very moment you cast over-board these desires, clingings, loves, hatreds and attachments and also throw off even the desire for light and chant Omfor a second, you attain immediate freedom, Anand, Bliss Supreme. On the playground, in India, we place an instrument called gulli, which is thick at the middle and sharply pointed at the ends, with both end raised above ground, and we strike one end with a bat and the gulli rises at once in the air a little; then we deal it a very 89 The Story Of Swami Rama hard blow with the bat and it goes flying right into the air to a great distance.

    There are two processes in this game. The first is to raise the gulli and the second is to make itfiy into the air. If the mind is to be brought into divine communion, first of all it is to be raised just a little, and the second process is to shoot it far off into the spiritual atmosphere.

    O happy worker, success must seek you, when you cease to seek success. Christ spoke only to eleven disciples, but those words were stored up by the atmosphere, were gathered up by the skies, and are today being read by millions of people. Truth crushed to earth shall rise again. Remember it always that when sending out thoughts of jealousy and envy, of criticism, of fault-finding, or thoughts smacking of jealousy and hatred, you are courting the very same thoughts yourself. Whenever you are discovering the mote in your brother's eye, you are putting the beam into your own.

    Let us watch a hero in the battlefield. He is mad with a super-abundance of power, thousands count nothing to him, his own body has no appearance of reality to him. He is no longer the body or mind and the world is 90 The Story Of Swami Rama no more existent, the spirits are up and every hair of his body is thundering out his immersion in the Great Beyond which lies at the hack of the body, the mind, and the whole world.

    Thus, to the spectators, indomitable courage and heroic power are like a lightning flash of the Unknowable into the phenomenal world; but in regard to the subject himself un-daunted bravery is unconsciously no more than religion, that is, absorption in the Power behind the screen.

    The very word ecstasy e, out, and sto, stand shows that HAPPINESS, no matter under what conditions or circumstances experienced, is nothing different from standing, so to say, outside the body, mind and world. Referring to one's own experience any person can see the oneness of happiness with freedom, though temporary, from all duality. The longed-for object, and the wooing subject welding into one constitute joy. Thus manifestly the very nature of happiness is religion. You respect your Self when you are filled with God- consciousness; when you are filled with the thought of 91 The Story Of Swami Rama God within, then are you filled with Self respect.

    By the worship of the body you are committing suicide; you are digging a pit for yourself The path of salvation, the way to realisation, is apparent death, that and nothing else, crucifixion and nothing else, there is no other way to inspiration. Let God work through you, and there will he no more duty. Let God shine forth. Let God show Himself. Live God. Eat God. Realise the Truth and the other things will take care of themselves.

    Try to make great and good men of yourselves. Do not expend your energies, do not waste thought on building beautiful and grand houses. Many of your houses are large and grand, but the men in them are very small. There are large tombs in India, but what do they contain? Nothing but rotten carcasses, crawling worms and snakes! Do not try to make your wife, your friends and yourself grand, by wasting energy on big houses and grand furniture. If you take this idea, if you realise that, if you perceive and know that the one aim and goal of life is not in wasting energy and accumulating riches, but in cultivating the inner powers, in educating yourself, to 92 The Story Of Swami Rama free yourself, to become God, if you realise that and expend your energies in that direction, the family ties will he no obstacle to you.

    Friends and relations ought to be transparent to us, they should not be like veils and blinds. They should be as glass-panes obstructing no light, nay, they should be like spectacles and microscopes or telescopes, helps and not hindrances. A rope-dancer at first rides the rope, single, alone. When highly practiced he takes with him a boy or some heavy object and dances on the rope. So, after living a single life and acquiring perfection, a man may allow others in his company. Man must conquer his passions or disappear.

    It is impossible to imagine a man presided over by his stomach or sexual passions — a walking stomach, using hands, feet, and all other members merely to carry it from place to place and serve its assimilative mania. The reading of books and learning all knowledge is one 93 The Story Of Swami Rama thing; and to acquire the Truth is another. You may read all the sacred Scriptures and yet not know the Truth. Death asks, not ''What have you? To give is a hetter hargain than to get. Love is a disease if it impairs the freedom of the soul. Make it thy slave, and all the miracles of Mature shall lie in the palm of thy hand.

    Let not desire and love tear and rend thee. A soldier who is going to a campaign does not seek what fresh furniture he can carry on his hack, hut rather what he can leave hehind. So if thou seekest fame or ease or pleasure or aught for thyself, the image of that thing which thou seekest will come and cling to thee and thou wilt have to carry it ahout — and the images and the powers which thou hast thus evoked will gather round and form for thee a new hody — clamouring for sustenance and satisfaction — Beware then lest it hecome thy grave and thy prison — instead of thy winged ahode and a palace of joy.

    It was Muhammad's realisation of God's lave for man, however little he may have put it into words, that thrilled through the Arab world and drew the tribe one man to fight beneath his banner. If you could sustain it then, whether in busy New York or the silent Himalayas, the effect remains the same. The place, form and mode of activity do not matter. A man never rises so high as when he knows not whither he is going.

    The suffering man ought to consume his own smoke; there is no good in emitting smoke till you have made it into fire, which in the metaphorical sense, too, all smoke is capable of becoming. Clad in the orange robe of a monk, fired by the success of Swami Vivekananda in America, and brimful of a pure, nectarious enthusiasm for diffusing through the whole world the rich truth of his own convictions, Swami Rama actually burst forth on the admiring and astonished gaze of the world that met him, as a truly inspired apostle of Vedanta.

    And this Vedanta was his own. It seemed he had realised life in its supreme beauty suddenly by some unknown sacred personal touch that maddened him with a divine intoxication. As some Higher One, came and touched the soul of Chaitanya maddening him for life, so it was in the case of Swami Rama.

    A glorious inspired personality can, under no circumstances, be the result merely of human achievements, however great ones attainments or accomplishments may 96 The Story Of Swami Rama be. He was adorned with Heaven's own hand that paints a Hly white and a rose red and a violet purple. He insists at times in very emphatic language on the ceaseless repetition of OM.

    His own repetition of OM was ceaseless. But none of his followers ever caught this fire, except for the days and hours they were with him. I never saw him excuse himself from this incessant labour. Without it one dies. He said "Ah! He punctuated his speech not with commas and colons and semi-colons, but with the Name of His Beloved — Baha! Again when at Vashishtha Ashram, he was deeply imbued with the spirit of ceaseless Simrin. I have fallen, because I have forgotten the Beloved! You have all come, you obstruct my vision.

    I fall, I grow weak, because I forget Him. It cannot be. Those who take to its repetition as a matter of spiritual discipline by the sheer force of a trained will, do it all their life without any gain whatsoever. It starts as a mere discipline and ends a mere discipline. It is the Great Prophet of Nam of the Punjab, Guru Nanak, who came and cleared this great confusion that for centuries clung to the fundamental secret of Brahma Vidya that, in India, leads to the right kind of development of human personality, and it is he who emphasised that man on this earth in order to rise, has to come under the influence of great Powerful Men living in other Higher Spiritual worlds, and it is under their inspiration that he is to develop his own Self.

    Self-Realisation is infinite and without inspiration all efforts of man unaided end in despair and in weariness of spirit and fatigue of soul. Without inspiration, all is vanity. That the Swami -was inspired none can deny. Swami Rama lived the deep life of a Bhagat, of a man of Simrin, of a self-intoxicated poet, of a man maddened with the exquisite beauty of the Divine Face in the Universe, and this almost continuous ecstatic state of his mind does not seem to be the result of any self-discipline] but of a sudden onrush of Higher Inspiration.

    There are evidences of the sudden floods coming into him, and his self-discipline of years helped him to live on those floods with the tenacity of a mathematician, with the devotion of a lover, with the recklessness of a philosopher and with the will of a conqueror, even in times of depression. Swami Rama held fast to the tides.

    His poetry, his vast reading, his choice of solitude, and of incessant work all helped him. But no man with any spiritual insight could deny that the beautiful glow of his personality was of a kind that reminds one faintly of Chaitanya. The spirit of Bhakti vibrated intensely even when he was blazing in his own words as veritable God Himself, In San Francisco, 99 The Story Of Swami Rama when he said: "I am God" tears of bHss trickled down his closed eyes, his face sparkled, and his arms vibrated with passion to hold the very universe in his embrace.

    This emotion assuredly is not of any philosopher. This passion was of a Vaishnava Bhakta. In early days, he seldom spoke in public without shedding tears at the very name of Krishna for hours. He beheld Him on the Kadamb tree and heard his flute ringing in his ears, while bathing in the Ganges at Hardwar.

    In his house at Lahore, he read Sur Sugar with the glorious passion that brought him the vision of Krishna after which he swooned away. Seeing a serpent with upspread hood in his room that very day after the swoon, he beheld Krishna dancing on its hood. He told me that for days and nights he wept in love of Krishna, and his wife saw in the morning that his pillow was wet with tears, I woke to find my pillow wet With tears for deeds deep hid in sleep.

    I knew no sorrow here, but yet The tears fell softly through the deep. This emotion never left him. It is in his poetry, in The Story Of Swami Rama his prose, in speech, in silence, in sleep, I saw it in him when he was dancing on the sands of the Jamuna in ecstasy, at Mathura. I have seen him crying and weeping with this very love on the swards of Vashishtha Ashram.

    Even there he carried with him a miniature model of Krishna with flute in hand and I enquired what it was. He laughed and said: "This is Rama's magic not to be shown to you. That this blossoming of his personality was sudden is evident from the record of his letters which he had been writing to one Dhanna Mai, an old bachelor of Gujranwala under whose care the father of Swami Rama put this impressionable little boy when the boy joined the Gujranwala High School. As a boy, Swami Rama liked the man, owing to his religiosity and some extraordinary powers of thought-reading that this Dhanna Mai once possessed but which he seems to have soon lost.

    Swami Rama had, at Vashishtha Ashram, a long talk with me about the man and how this man having some occult powers, lost his way irretrievably in them with the natural result of a complete downfall. Swami Narayan has done well in bringing them together in a book form, out of which, the following extracts are given in the form of diary notes, as all his letters to the old Dhanna Mai were in the form of reports about himself sent to him. It seems there was a constant demand of money on the part of Dhanna Mai, and Swami Rama, whether as a student or as a recipient of a paltry stipend, or when earning a little by work as a private tutor to some students or sons of rich men, or as a professor earning about Rs.

    His vow of self-surrender once made was so complete that he seldom acted without his advice or guidance. It is also clear that this Dhanna in the initial stages of his life, was of some help to the boy in directing his inborn trend of mind towards things spiritual and in inspiring him with a quest for higher things when the boy needed such inspiration.

    Swami Rama, a little before his death, had the courtesy to send a letter through me to Dhanna, and asked me to offer him a paltry amount as he had no one to support him and had grown then very old. Kors has been noted to have said he dresses a woman who leads, this collection was no exception. Virgil Abloh, the creative director of Off-White, has started a revolution of sorts at his own respective fashion house. After lunch, we are making our way through the Quad stepping over concrete that has been adorned with ProTrump propaganda. However, fashion differentiates itself from other industries because the fashion industry can produce a product that personifies a culture, place, or time like no other product can, thus propelling clothing above a blend of craftsmanship and fabric, and into a realm in between physical product and art.

    The ability for clothing to personify is no more evident than in the streets of Paris, as well as those inspired by the city of lights. Parisian fashion also offers the wearer a sense of empowerment that is difficult to find anywhere else. Ultimately Parisian fashion elevates itself because of the variety and versatility that exists within its streets. So, take a than clothing, and something that tranlook at our gallery that consists of some scends fashion altogether?

    Many Parisian fashthing that not only reflects your favorite ion staples have been a yearly presence aesthetic, but your personality as well. We like to think that the classic Parisian style is not confined by fashion rules such as those seen in traditional tailoring, rather Parisian fashion is defined by the distinct, graceful aura that it exudes.

    It is this unassuming elegance that has made the look transcend a definition of fashion altogether, and instead it is a physical representation of one of the most iconic cities in the world. While equally significant as a more classic Parisian style, the Yves Saint Laurent look brings a grittiness and flair to the streets of Paris that has the ability channel the rebellious side in the most devoted of straight shooters.

    Unlike the traditional Parisian look, the Saint Laurent style is anything but subtle. Saint Laurent built their aesthetic on a foundation of leather jackets, slim cut black mini dresses, studded footwear, and more recently, sequined blazers. A Yves Saint Laurent inspired look perfectly blends elegance with a little bit of punk, and that is why we think the legendary house has been able to resonate with an incredibly large, worldwide fan base.

    Streetwear generally greatly differs from the two aforementioned styles in that streetwear is always evolving. Currently, the streetwear scene in Paris consists of a boundary pushing conglomerate of luxury and more accessible brands, thus resulting in a style that is incredibly unique, modern and inclusive. It is the modernity and inclusiveness of the streetwear scene in Paris that allows it to resonate with the Parisian youth, as it reflects the innovative, diverse nature of the population that make up the streets of Paris.

    Here are the highlights. Your album is quite unique and atmospheric. I was wondering how you decided to build your sound in that way as well how you decided on the type of atmosphere that you wanted to create with it? I was writing a lot about the emotions that I was going through dealing with the loss of my mother, and because I was writing a lot about my mother, I wanted to incorporate a lot of sounds from India and stuff like that. I was raised for some of my childhood there with her. So, it was really important for me to incorporate the Indian percussion because A — I really like those sounds and enjoy those sounds and B — I just thought it would describe her quite well.

    As for the atmospheric sound, just whatever sounds I accumulated from working with other producers in the past, and whenever they gave me logic and stuff like that, whatever I could understand and research and download, I would just through all of that stuff and whatever caught my ear, I would just try to make things that I would enjoy listening to and whatever helped me to express my inner emotions.

    When I was about fifteen I decided that I wanted to do music as an artist. Can you comment on your aesthetic as an artist? In terms of your EP cover as well as how you present yourself as an artist. I try and do things that I think are really beautiful. I love using flowers and stuff like that because I grew up around that.

    Again, I just AM:. I just think they add such a beautiful look. I got out of the shower and just put some makeup on and we shot just a simple look. Why am? Amber: Three has always been a prominent number in my life since forever. Then my mom passed away on June 3rd at pm in the year So, from there I was kind of like three is always showing up in my life. When I was writing the EP, which. I felt like everyone was sleeping so no one could hear me because I was embarrassed of people hearing me.

    So, I would write from pm onwards until around am. Around two weeks straight I was writing, and I was doing a lot of production stuff and I would zone out. It felt fitting to work in that time for the title. Just the whole alternative-punk-emo type of style has always spoken to me personally.

    Impulse chore to me. On Emo-Punk, vulnerability, and intimate house shows, this is: Jarring. I can relate to it. It lets you express very negative thoughts and feelings in a healthy positive light because I personally really relate to very spiteful and angsty lyrics.