Morarji Desai

Morarji Desai

Prime Minister of India (March 1977 to July 1979)
From his autobiography The Story of My Life records

I had the privilege of seeing Ramana Maharshi in August 1935 in the hall in which he usually sat.He was sitting on a sofa and wore only a loincloth. I could see an aura on his face,which was glowing with peace and joy. I sat opposite to him but did not ask him anything. He too did not say anything to me.I sat there for over an hour and just looked at his face.Till today I have not seen that aura,that joy or peace on anybody else's face. While I was there,no questions arose in my mind nor did I feel any desire to ask anything. I was at complete peace with myself. It was this experience which convinced me that Ramana Maharshi had realized God or Truth. Some of his disciples who were present asked him some question,which he answered. He,however,said nothing of his own accord.

I had to leave the place next day by train at about twelve. About an hour-and-a half before the time of departure,I approached Ramana Maharshi for permission to leave. He told me that I should go after I had eaten. We sat down for lunch along with the Maharshi at abot eleven O'clock. After lunch,Ibowed to him and left.

The visit to Ramana Maharshi left an abiding impression on me. I learnt by sitting in his presence that a person who wanted to realise God has to strive and pursue yoga by himnself.

Presiding over the 99th Jayanthi celebrations of Ramana Maharshi at Shri Ramana Kendra, New Delhi,on 13th January 1979, Morarji Desai as Prime Minister, said: The Maharshi seemed to know everything. He knew the language of the animals. He listened to thier complaints. He treated every being with love, whether it was a cow or dog, a crow or a monkey. All were equal in his eyes, the begger and the millionaire. He refused to go out and preach. He said, "If I am a jnani, I consider everybody else a jnani too. What is there to teach?" He regarded everybody as himself. He made no attempt to convert anybody. One got transformed by his very presence.

Many civilizations have florished and then disapperared. But in this country you find our old culuture and the ancient religion still alive. And it is this that keeps the country alive. It is person like the Maharshi who keep it alive... All learning shouls come from within. That is the way the Maharshi showed. He did not creitcize others'way of life. He said, "Stick to your own religion and follow it properly." Ramana Maharshi taught that one could do sadana in one's chosen way and reach the goal.