1. Countless lifetimes past
Was I Thy votary fast
Thou were my Source my all
As the world’s allure did pall

2. But forgetful wretch that I art
I allow’d myself from Thee to part
Drifting from Thy holy refuge
Ag’inst my mind’s deadly deluge

3. And toss’d and turn’d, steering alone
On seas whose fury Thou had’st borne
Claiming victory’s freshness at every crest
To be dashed next moment in the tempest

4. Wandering lost in the desert of desire
Chasing the mirage of purpose’s sire
Where fulfillment fanned flames first
As saltwater does a castaway’s thirst

5. Strutting in ignorance of ignorance
In the darkness of Primal arrogance
Till at last with spirit vanquished
I called out desperately anguished

6. Pleading for surcease and relief
Petitioning powers with dim belief
Sinking, knees bent in fatigue and failure
I prayed despondent, in abject surrender

7. Lo! You blazed silent and still
As the Beacon from Eternity’s Hill
A blinding flame cool and bright
From my Heartcave in thoughtless delight

8. Reminding me of our eternal connection
Silencing my senses with the recollection
Of the port of safety that always existed
In the depths of my being where “I” is fixated

9. Beguiling my mind with Thy innocent smile
Thou did’st feed me Thy nectar free of guile
Bewitching my heart in the dead of the night
You transfixed and consumed me in Thy Light

10. Never again my gaze shall I turn
From Your Beacon that does ego burn
Nor leave for long Thy Name, that chant
That thrilled my being as honey to an ant

11. Gripped since in the jaws of Your Gaze
Guided hence through life’s maze
Thou let me win and lose with freedom
And revel in Thee with sporadic abandon

12. Thy Leash’s on my neck, Your Hill is the peg
Now letting me range and graze as far as I beg
Tasting bitter herbs and lush sweet grasses
And drinking the waters of faraway places

13. Enough this spurious freedom! This fake liberty!
This granting of pleasures sweetened by adversity
Tighten Thy Leash and destroy my range
Bring me home no foreigner strange.

14. O’ “I Am” revealed, shining forth as all
How could Thou let this delusion fall?
Can the One be confused as the Many?
If Thy will did not veil this epiphany

15. Verily by Thy Hand does this Delusion prevail
Show Thy Mercy and remove mankind’s travail
That brother may not slaughter brother
And Thy Holy Lands be not torn asunder

16. Standing silent, Thou put to shame
Scholarly intellect’s vain-glorious claim
To grasp Thee with duality’s meager span
“Be Still”, Thou said “And know That I Am”

18. Didn’t Thy Elder Prince, Divinity’s Fruit winner
Beg Immortality’s Nectar from the Cave Dweller
That we may taste the flavor of liberation
In crumbs from their table of deliberation

19. Such Thy Greatness, what merit does now shower
The favor of Thy disdain on this hapless beggar
O’ Lord! Grant my eyes Thy eternal Light
The glorious blaze that puts fear to flight

20. Ego hast made a janitor of me, the king
Granting me a refuse cart for the hauling
Bestow now the Grace of Thy sweet fragrance
And destroy the stench of this foul existence

21. O’ Dancing Beggar of the Cremation pit
By Your command I stand, a spendthrift
Cast now upon me Thy Graceful Glance
Ere I squander this soul’s inheritance

22. Thy Will addicted this mind to pleasure
Now luring me if You wait your leisure
This soul will drink Maya’s stagnant water
Like sand swallowed by the crazed traveler

23. Which parent lets a child play with fire?
Can Thou see me fall, standing as my Sire
Play no longer this mischievous game
Lest the world speak of You in shame.

24. Kama devour’d Vishwamitra in a trice
Can I win freedom then from this vice?
You who consumed Kama in a stray Glance
Are my refuge, O’ Lord, my only Deliverance

25. Dazzle me not with Maya’s peacock fan
Lurking b’neath is Thy serpent’s fang
Stand forth my Lord blazing bright
Consume me in Thy Eternal Light

26. My vasanas crash on me evermore.
As surging waves on the ocean shore
Borne by the weight of my Karma
They shatter my resolve of Dharma

27. As an infant building castles of sand
I struggle in my Sadhana to stand
O’ Saviour of Parvati’s sand idol
Enfold me in Thy Arms Bridal

28. O’ Lord of all beings, worlds and lands
Weighted by failings, condemned I stand
I come seeking Thy sanctifying Grace
Turn me not away from Thy Embrace

29. O’ Hunter of souls, Divine Archer beyond compare
Was errant Thy Gaze as Thy Arrow shot here
And grazed my heart with this unhealing wound
Now Knowledge reigns not with Ignorance unswoon’d

30. Or is it Thy sport, that You prefer
To see this soul move in dazed stagger
Grasping by turn at scripture and worlds
In vain quest for relief as agony swirls

31. Be Still and Surrender Thou said
‘Tis easy for Thee to speak from Thy bed
When even surrender is by Thy command
Who shall bow to whom, I pray demand

32. O’ Beloved of the Unsuckled One!
I beseech Ye! Hear me, Your son
Cast Your snare, hunt and trap Your prey
Feed on this mind in Your own Mystic way

33. Boldly in his father’s lap does the prince play
Even so have I spoken with liberty today
O’ Eye of my eyes, see my heart and take no offense
Enfold me in Thee and sweet liberation do dispense

34. Grant these ears, this tongue Thy glorious Name
The mysterious sound that pervades my frame
Grant my taste, my touch Thy Lotus Feet
The sweet softness that makes my heartbeat

35. Grant my thoughts, my desires Thy steady Gaze
The clarity of vision that guides through the maze
Grant my speech, my hands Thy Healing spell
The sacred power that does delirium dispel

36. But if this plea, Thou does not hear
For my want of strength or purpose clear
Still hast Thou granted me a way to Thee
A path simple and clear to where Thou Be

37. This Leash on my neck tethered to Thy Hill
Is all I need to bring me to Thy Will
Thus going round and round and round as I graze
Thy Name in my heart and Thy Hill in my gaze

38. Tightening the Leash with every turn
Shortening my range until I burn
Naked and innocent in Thy glorious blaze
At Thy Feet and Hill under Thy watchful Gaze

39. When I and Thou shall be no more
And all is Thee and I evermore
Where Silence dances its sacred Dance
In Eternal Action and Eloquence

40. Thus as I pleaded to Thee in fervor
Lovingly did Thou come to my succor
And as fear and bewilderment did rise
When Maya threatened to cloud my eyes

41. Mercifully Thou loosened its terrible grip
And with gentle care did not let me slip
Commanding my birth in Thy votaries lineage
That I may be guided by Thy firm parentage

42. Guiding my sire’s footsteps to bring me to You
In my twenty-second year, to hold Thee true
While You revealed my Self free of any vice
Crushing my mind so my heart may realize

43. That Life and Death was your puppet
And I, only a guest at your banquet
That indeed I was never ever born
‘Cos everything moves in You as One

44. The sinner and the saved are indeed in You
As are the diseased and healthy too
In You are the prince and the pauper
As are also the judge and the robber

45. The infant and the ancient move as one
In You my Lord! O’ Five-faced One
One indeed is the lover and the loved
As are also me and my wife beloved

46. My children and I are but one
As are my parents and I their son
My siblings and I are but one
Playing in innocence for Your fun

47. My friends and my enemies are none
Other than You my Lord! O’ Holy One
Thy Feet are my crown, Thy Name on my tongue
Mute is my throat for other praise to be sung

48. And all I had ever given or received as mine
Was already assured long before my time
I was only the instrument in Your eternal game
Were I not there, action would occur all the same

49. And my only free will was either deny or surrender
To Thy Supreme Will that ruled all here and yonder
And that there is no victory to have since
Than to abide as “I” and nothing else hence

50. Knowing that You have given all this as a gift
To enjoy, experience, and share to uplift
That I be the custodian, your trustee
These gifts used for You, this life as a fee

51. Revealed have Thou the nature of Maya
As naught but the surf of Thy Leela
When all action is but Thy movement
Where is room for my achievement?

52. Oh! Glorious indeed is this infinite freedom
Neither sunset nor sunrise in this kingdom
Gone the incessant drumbeat of the worldly race
Vanish’d as the morning mist before Thy Face

53. When even Death is at Thy Feet abiding
Why need I worry about the morning?
Fearless do I stride amidst men with bowed crown
Favoring none with fawning smile or scowling frown

54. All lifetimes are now dreams for me
Stretching ever onwards to infinity
Truly there is neither bondage nor liberation
The thought of either is fevered delusion

55. No world, no galaxy, nor heaven nor hell
Nothing save “I” exists with none other to tell
And in this glorious silence of unitary existence
Occurs eternal cycles of creation and destruction

56. Springing forth eternally as dream thoughts within Me
Where satisfaction and frustration are but dreams to see
Can I sport in aught else, having tasted the Bliss of My Self?
Who bathes in foam when spring waters pour off the shelf?

57. Gone the doubts of petty existence
Who is there for their persistence?
Neither are these thoughts denied
Who remains for them to be belied?

58. Let them stand or fall on their own accord
Attention to them I can no more afford
I did’nt call them forth so sustain ‘em I can’t
Let the power that birth’d ‘em meet their want

59. Indeed in this state divine powers do accrue
But none remains to wield ‘em, that is true
Gone forever is the fantasy of omnipotence
As also the dark nightmare of impotence

60. Gone the prayer as well as the supplicant
Consumed by a matted hair mendicant
No blazing light here nor darkness of ignorance
Nothing save Consciousness’s Blissful Existence

61. Still dream creation needs action to fulfill
So this dream body is moved by Thy Will
While I remain as “I” and this as this
Silent I AM, none to claim as his.

62. Paltry indeed is the common tongue of duality
That speaks of MY state in terms of plurality
Indeed no word can exist when all is One
Nothing but Silence indeed is MY tongue

63. Undifferentiated and pristine I remain supreme
But to say even this is verily to blaspheme
Who is there to describe MY condition
Where redemption exists not nor any perdition

64. Unbound by good and evil do I freely roam
Neither fortune nor calamity shakes my bones
No auspicious date or time for me exist
Indeed in Me does all creation persist

65. All duties, roles and action are as play to me
Unfettered by their results I now walk free
Intoxicated by Bliss, in Thee do I drunkenly roam
To passersby, the lights are on but nobody’s home

67. If duality has to be assumed for creation perchance
Then let it be said that this is Thy Cosmic dance
Where creation, expansion and dissolution
Cycle endlessly in harmonious perpetuation

68. Galaxies arise spontaneously from the Self
Shooting like spray from a rocky shelf
Untouched by all action is this Consciousness
As the ocean beneath the cyclone’s viciousness

69. No slothful slumber of blankness is My state
Though outwardly I may assume that fate
Vibrant in incessant action I do remain
Eternally moving in Stillness all the same

70. Simple indeed is the path to Thee
No effort needed to simply Be
Indeed that is where I always am
To believe otherwise is delusion’s span

71. But to those enamored of complex stratagems
Let them hear and practice these eternal gems
As lived and instructed by Thee, Guru Ramana
So all may be free from the burden of their vasana

72. Sitting in any posture of personal comfort
Practice diligently with single-minded effort
Watch the tides of thy breath as they rise and fall
And soon the mind will be held in its thrall

73. And as each thought, image and sound
Rushes forth to parade around
Ask who it is that watches
And know I as the witness

74. Watching thus the witness unil you’re adept
Then realization dawns that this too is a concept
Verily a thief ‘tis in policeman’s garb
Moving in circles to outwit the mob

75. Discard even the watcher, and now remain
Silent and Still as “I”, your eternal domain
Fleeting as quicksilver on a metal plate
Will the first glimpses be of this State

76. Be not seduced by visions mighty and grand
Or even hope for them as marks of your stand
Why would you limit the Self to blazes of light
When that which you seek lies beyond sight

77. No milestone exists nor compass to navigate
No yardstick of duality to fathom this state
Discard all methods of the intellect and seize thy fate
Know Being by Experience direct, as thy eternal state

78. Like wafting fragrance of the night’s jasmine
Effort on this path shall permeate your being
Until meditation proceeds as the undercurrent
Of activity regardless the distracting moment

79. Be unperturbed by the passage of time
Time is memory and no concern of thine
When all creation stands on the “I” thought
Past, present and future are empty as nought

80. If any disciplinary aid should thou seek
Discard the consumption of animal meat
Food is the fuel and substance of the mind
This discipline is a useful one thou wilt find

81. The doing of kriya’s and karma’s thine
Chanting of mantra’s and songs divine
As crutches they are to the limping lame
These acts do focus the mental frame

82. Each in its own time has its rightful place
As sequential steps in the spirit’s pace
Neither greater nor lesser are they behold
Each seeker’s need do they uniquely mold

83. But stay not thou in kindergarten forever
Since indeed bidden art thou to rise yonder
‘Cos action’s power can only yield fruits
But never the insight that severs the roots

84. And what be the fruit of action?
Except the seed of more action
Commanding the birth of future lives
Busy as bees attending their hives

85. The joy you get from all worldly actions
Arises from the Self as a blissful reaction
On subsidence of the performing entities
Letting you taste Being free of identities

86. Confuse not source of the Bliss so obtained
With all the preceding actions that reigned
As a wind-blown tree, that fell as the crow alighted
By fools believed, as by the bird’s weight blighted

87. Begin not the pursuit of happiness thru’ action
Like wounding oneself for the relief of a lotion
Be not a dog chewing bones, bleached in the sun
And reveling in the taste of its own bleeding gum

88. But action performed sans attachment
Has no capacity to shackle thy raiment
Indeed doership is bondage’s essence
It’s absence is liberation’s presence

89. Surrendering all actions to God as an offering
In one stroke wilt thou put an end to suffering
When all actions are but the Lord’s domain
Thine is blessed freedom in that which remains

90. As passengers on a train are we all
With loads of karma in our carry-all
Imbeciles groan with loads on their head
As the train with loaded rider rolls ahead

91. The wise one, with luggage at his feet
And the burdened cretin, in his seat
Indeed the same destination do they reach
But their attitude decides the fate of each

92. Good it is to chant the Holy Sound
Better it is to whisper it around
Greater still is the mental chant
Yet supreme is it to Be the Chant

93. Seeking the sound of the chanted mantra
Using Self Inquiry’s method as the tantra
Ask whence from the chanter springs forth
Rejecting all mental forms as of little worth

94. Diligently seek thee the source within
And on finding it, do subside therein
Only by such effort shall true Tapas reign
So promises Ramana of Virupaksha fame

95. All scriptures are but maps of the way in
To the state of Being lying in thee within
Erudite fools argue and contest the map
While the simple sage drinks Being’s sap

96. The scholar lost in libraries under the sun
Spends his days relearning the number one
His years of erudite effort rank not above
A single moment of self-dissolving Love

97. Varna’s, ashrama’s, castes and creed
Are but divisions of the mental breed
On knowing Brahman a Brahmin is he
Knowing all else a Chandaala he be

98. Yet without a teacher’s Grace
Impossible it is to see His Face
Verily the teacher as the Guru
Is the Self known as “Ulluru”

99. But for the ardent seeker struggling with fate
The Guru will arrive and guide him to His State
This is an incontestable Truth, have faith my son
Indeed the Guru and the Self are but one

100. Pushing him from without as the Self pulls him in
Never doubt the Guru is the Self’s inseparable twin
Ego’s destruction is assured in the Guru’s maw
As the fate of the prey caught in the tiger’s jaw

101. Blessed is he on whom falls the Guru’s Gaze
He has received the key out of Maya’s maze
Surrender your all at the Sat Guru’s Feet
Hurry my son, reclaim your Heavenly Seat

102. Gentler by far than the mother that bore me
Is my Guru Ramana standing before me
Radiant as a million suns, cooler than the full moon
His Gaze has stolen my heart, my ego’s in a swoon

103. Having crazed me with love He sends me to roam
In lands of the lost and blind far from home
Cloaked in a healer’s garb, I now stand at the post
While residing beneath, it is He who heals the host

104. Who but Ramana of Patala Linga fame
Residing at Arunachala in Guha’s name
Speaks today in me in the English tongue
As this verse bubbling forth to be sung

105. O’ Lord perfumed by Vaachakar’s lilting prose
Wreathed by the garlands of Muruganar’s verse
I offer Thee this crazed rant with heartfelt devotion
O’ Wearer of Kannappan’s spittle as a body lotion

106. Praise be the Blessed Feet of Guru Ramana
That crowns my head, standing as Vaamana
Praise be the Holy Hill of Arunachala
Hope’s Eternal Beacon called Sonachala

107. Praise be Mother Allagama’s holy shrine
At the feet of Aruna Hill, forever Thine
Praise the Divine Effulgence of Karthikai’s Beacon
The Eternal Light that to all seekers does beckon

108. To Thee I offer humbly my faltering praise
With trembling voice and tears on my face
Fathered by the sun, this moon child stands
As Ravichandran bowing with folded hands

[The above was written by an Arunachala-Ramana devotee currently living in the U.S.]