C.K.Anavema Reddy

No Mirror Can Ever Shave

By C. K. Anavema Reddy

There is a small piece of conversation from the life of Sri Bhagavan which, as far as I am aware, has not been recorded. Though brief, it has remained very vivid in my memory.

It was in 1940 that one day one of the devotees sitting in the hall raised the topic regarding the utility of reading books on religion and philosophy. In reply Sri Bhagavan said, "You wake up in the morning and look into the mirror and the mirror shows you that you have a growth and that you have to get rid of it. You may go on looking into any number of mirrors; every mirror will tell you the same thing, but no mirror can ever shave you. You have to shave yourself. Instead of wasting time looking into mirror after mirror it is best to start shaving after having looked into the first mirror and known the truth."

"So also all books will tell you the same truth, perhaps in slightly different ways. Instead of wasting time reading book after book why not realize for yourself what was obvious from the very first book."

These words of Sri Bhagavan are pregnant with deep significance and are capable of being elaborately commented upon.