- Venue: Sri Ramanasramam
The attention of visitors to The Ashram is immediately drawn to a slender figure, clad in loincloth, walking carefree in and around the Samadhi of Sri Bhagavan, murmuring the japa of Arunachala- Ramana : he is Sri Jagadish Swami.
Jagadish often came to Sri Bhagavan along with his father Sri Ishwarbhai B. Damania, and his mother and brothers from Bombay in the forties for shorter or longer periods. Sri Ishwarbhai was instrumental and helpful in the purchase of the house at the birthplace in Tiruchuzhi (Sundara Mandiram). And when Sri Matrubhuteswara Shrine was completed, Sri Ishwarbhai not only supplied all the materials needed for the electrification of the Shrine, but personally supervised the electrical installations, having expert experience in the line. Such was his deep devotion and service to Sri Bhagavan.
So this is a case of intense devotion of the parents blossoming in one of the children as a life of utter renunciation and sadhana. After finishing his college course, Jagadish started on a pilgrimage, during which he visited the Anandashram of Sri Swami Ramdas and some other places as well. It was two or three years after the Brahma Nirvana (1950) of Bhagavan that he arrived at Arunachala. Suddenly he felt the urge to renounce everything and take tq tapascJiarya.
He had his head shaven and, wearing only a kaupina, Sri Jagadish Swami he began to stay for shorter or longer periods in all the places hallowed by Bhagavan, the Temple premises of Arunachaleswara, Patala lingam, Gurumurtam, Pavalakkunru, Virupaksha Cave and Skandashram. engaged all the time in meditation and living on alms (bhiksha) or whatever food he chanced to get.
When he came to live in the proximity of the present Sri Ramanasramam, he learnt Tamil and with the help of co-devotees studied and learned all the original works of Bhagavan in Tamil — the Five Hymns to Arunachala, Upadesa Saram, Ulladu Narpadu and others. Upadesa Saram, he knows in all the four languages in which Sri Bhagavan himself has composed it, viz., Tamil, Sanskrit, Telugu and Malayalam.
( Mountain Path – July 1976 )