Mira Prabhu – In Memoriam

Mira Prabhu is now free from the torment of physical suffering caused by her cancer.  Death claimed Mira at a young age when she was on the verge of becoming well known for her writings and spiritual novels. Mira left her body on January 6, 2019, in Tiruvannamalai, India, near the Holy Hill of Arunachala. Her ashes were sprinkled over the Holy Mountain.

Mira was a beautiful soul with a kind heart and I felt her warmth and love that she naturally had for Bhagavan Ramana devotees. We used to post each other’s blog posts on our respective blog sites. Mira often shared my FB posts on her wall. She was always generous in her comments and very supportive as we were both Bhagavan devotees.

Mira was a prolific and gifted writer. She was also a yogini and mystic. She was a devotee of Bhagavan Ramana and also followed Nisargadatta Maharaj’s teachings. Mira had been living close to the Holy Hill of Arunachala in the south of India (where Sri Ramana spent 53 years) before she passed away.

Mira was an amazing woman. She was fiery and fearless and authentic in her expressions. She despised hypocrisy, especially among the so-called spiritual people. She always spoke her truth from the heart without hesitation. She did not suffer fools and charlatans and false prophets silently. When she saw injustice, she spoke up.

Mira and I connected on FB in 2014. Mira seemed to like everything I wrote on my blog and on FB on Ramana Maharshi, Advaita Vedanta, and other yoga-related topics. She would frequently share my writings on her blog and her FB page. I also started visiting her blog and following her on facebook. I realized that she was an extraordinarily perceptive and brilliant spiritual aspirant. Mira and I became part of the mutual admiration society for each other!

In the summer of 2016, Mira asked me to recommend her book on my blog and also review it on Amazon. I was delighted to do it. Ten days later, after I had read more of her essays, I wrote to Mira an email. It stated in part:

“Dear Mira,

“I am a professor and have read literally thousands of student papers and a few books as well. When I read your writing, I find myself thinking, “Mira is so immensely gifted and spectacularly talented with such a mastery of expression and command of the English language”.

“You are able to take the raw experiences of your life and through your knowledge of various fields, subtly weave them in enchanting stories and articles”!

“I feel so happy for you Mira. May all the universal blessings shine on you”…

All Love
_______

Mira was ecstatic on getting my email. I only give part of her response to me below:

Dear Harsh,

What a wonderful message to receive on a beautiful morning in the shadow of Arunachala! You pay me great compliments and I will treasure them because sometimes the inner journey gets hard and lonely and I for one rely on my closest friends (whom I call my “kalyanamitras”) to pull me through. Its been a rough ride all right, but everything in the past turns into light when I consider the grace of Arunachala and Ramana that drew me to this tiny town to know my Self.

Do you plan to make a trip to Arunachala? I would be so happy to meet you in person and might even cook for you, although I know you are a great cook yourself, vegan, am I right? But I can only try! I would also love for you to meet a few close friends too, so, if you get the opportunity to leave what must be a very busy life (based on what I know of the West), please seize the day, Carpe Diem!

Thank you again, Harsh. I’ve been dealing with the usual ups and downs (of living in a small semi-rural town where folks have odd ways of doing things) and was feeling a bit blue – when your email arrived and energized me. Arunachala’s Magic again!

Much love and
Namasthe!
Mira
__________

Mira and I exchanged other emails and got to know each other. We kept in touch. Mira invited me to come to Arunachala where she was living and told me that she was never going to leave there. During most of 2018, I had gotten busier professionally and was not writing as much on my blog. I was on Mira’s general mailing list that Mira sent her articles to and got those on a regular basis.

The last communication I received from Mira was on November 8, 2018. She had sent it to all her contacts. Mira’s email stated, “HI ALL, just to say that I’ve been terribly sick and still trying to get better. Pray if you pray! Love!”  I went on Mira’s Facebook page the same day and there was the exact same message there. I left a heart symbol for her on her FB page in response to her message. I had no idea that that was going to be the last communication from Mira.

I learned a few days ago (March 19, 2019) that Mira had passed away two months earlier in January of 2019. I was so surprised to hear the news. I felt sad that I did not get a chance to say goodbye.

Death freed Mira from her physical pain and suffering. But it left a big gap in the lives of her friends and followers. I will miss Mira immensely.

People of Intelligence Examine Their Minds

We are elated and happy when things go our way. We are sad and depressed when reality unfolds differently than our expectations.

How pitiful is our lot my friends, thrown about here and there with the changing winds! Every day, the world, as perceived via the mind invites us to ride the roller coaster of emotions fueled by fear, anxiety, anger, and hatred. A Sage centered in the Heart of Love is always indifferent to such an invitation.

How truly fortunate to come into the orbit of Sages who give the purest teachings of Ahimsa (nonviolence) and Self-Realization. Bhagavan Ramana used to say, “Wise people examine their own minds.”

The One Light

Sages respect all spiritual paths, modes of prayer, contemplation, and meditation. Walking from any direction towards the Heart, ultimately leads to the Realization that All is One. One Love. One Heart.

Whoever you worship, and by whatever name you call the Divine Spirit, Her sweet light falls equally on everyone and is in everyone.

That One Light is in you as well.

It appears hidden behind the mind and personality, that you take to be your identity. But in truth, You, yourself are that One Light.

Understanding and intimately knowing our original and true identity as the light of consciousness is known as Self-Realization.

 

Do Not Interfere If Possible

One day, one of the devotees came to Bhagavan Ramana and said in an excited whisper, “Look, Bhagavan! Just look at that man!” Everyone turned to look. We saw a gentleman who was asleep in the meditation hall, swaying back and forth. The devotee who had approached Bhagavan complained, “I have been watching this person for the past few days. He (pretends to meditate) but always sleeps in Bhagavan’s presence.” 

Bhagavan looked at the complaining devotee and said, “That man is doing what he came here to do. But what about you? Did you come here just to check on people, and see who is awake and who is asleep and who is meditating? Why don’t you mind your own business?” 

Seeing the overzealous devotee rebuked like this, all the others burst out laughing.

Bhagavan did not like it at all when people complained about others. He used to say that as long as a person concentrated on the work he was engaged in, he would not even notice what others were doing. One can find the time to criticize others only when one’s attention wandered from the work at hand.

Source: From Cherished Memories by T.R. Kanakammal

This story is both funny and instructive. Bhagavan says to leave alone what others are doing in terms of spiritual practices, karma yoga, sleeping, etc., but focus on yourself. After all, self-inquiry is not a group activity. 🙂

Indeed, Bhagavan was most reluctant to accept invitations to criticize others on their spiritual path, even if it was different than the one he advocated. On more than one occasion, Bhagavan told devotees that they should mind their own business and keep in mind what their original purpose was in coming to Bhagavan.

Bryant University Graduation Week – May 2018

During the last week, there was a festive mood at the University as our young seniors were getting ready to graduate. They are our hope for the future to make this world a better place.

Here are some pictures that capture the joyful moments with colleagues and students.

Children Are Our Treasure And Future

In every generation, in every field, from sciences and humanities to business and politics, it is the young people who lead the way. Between the ages of 12 and 17, many children are already close to reaching the height of their creativity and intellectual powers. These gifts and abilities that shine at a young age continue to be developed and refined well into their 20s, 30s, and 40s.

In Chess, sometimes children become International Masters by the age of 11 (see the case of Praggnanandhaa of India). The youngest Grandmaster of Chess (Karjakin of Ukraine) achieved that distinction by the age of 13. The same thing happens in Mathematics, Music, and Sciences and we see prodigies everywhere breaking new ground in their fields and advancing society. Albert Einstein put forward his General Theory of Relativity at the age of 26 and published four major papers that revolutionized the whole field of physics.

In Business also, we clearly see the extraordinary talents of the young people as entrepreneurs and innovators who are founders of some of the biggest companies in tech today. Young people see the world with fresh eyes and have a tremendous capacity to come up with novel approaches to address challenges faced by society. It happens in the spring of youth. Energy, intelligence, sensitivity, and passion come together to ignite a volcano of creative energy.

Children are our treasure and our future. We have a sacred responsibility to protect them from fear and harm and nurture them in every way so they can fulfil their potential. As an educator, I feel deep pride when I see young people in high schools and colleges, and universities, find their voice and become leaders. There is no other choice but for talented young people to come forward and take leadership roles in every field including business and public service. 

Secret of Happiness

What is the secret of happiness?

Don’t bother anyone.

Don’t be bothered by anyone.

That is the path of joy and freedom.

Help those who come your way. Help where needed.

But don’t bother anyone. Don’t impose yourself and your views on others.

Stay with people and be part of the community devoted to universal love and peace.

Stay away from those who like to argue. Let them find their way.

Sri Ramana used to say that the best help we can give others is to transform ourself.

Be a person of peace and compassion, and this will reflect in your actions.

Be the light. That light will illumine your path and that of others and will be the best help you can give.

Quietly shine in your own pure nature of peace and radiance.

You will have done all you can.