The Swami and the people he knew
(1861 - March 28th, 1899)
Yogindra Nath Choudhury
|Swami Turiyananda said: "Sri Ramakrishna’s life had two aspects. You must try to understand both. If you accept only one aspect there will be misunderstanding and confusion. For instance: The Master used to give presents to musicians who played for him. When he had nothing else to offer them he gave away the very cloth he was wearing. Was not that an example of supreme renunciation? On the other hand, when that same Ramakrishna did not receive the customary food offering from the temple, he anxiously inquired about it and asked Swami Yogananda to go and get it.”
Swami Yogananda asked: ‘Why bother?’”
The Master rebuked him: ‘Oh yes, I know you are a man of great renunciation. You don’t care!’”
How to reconcile these two attitudes? Of course Sri Ramakrishna did not take a morsel of that food offering himself. He had it brought for distribution among the devotees.
- www.vivekananda.net edited by Frank Parlato Jr.