Experiences with Maha Periyava: Ottiya Pazhamum Ottadha Pazhamum (The fruit that sticks and the fruit that does not)
Many years have passed since this happened. Still it remains unfading green in my heart and guides me until today.
My marriage was held in the year 1958. My husband was serving as a Captain in the Army. Since, even after some years there was no putra bhagyam (fortune of a child) for me, my mother took me to have darshan of Shri Kanchi Kamakoti Pithadhipati Shri Chandrashekarendra Saraswati Maha Swamigal.
It was evening time. Shri Kanchi Maha Swamigal was doing japam (litany) sitting in his mena (palanquin). Some time passed by, and then Sri Maha Periyava looked at us with boundless compassion. My mother conveyed my grievance to Sri Maha Periyava. Taking an orange fruit from a plate nearby, Sri Maha Periyava kept meditating, closing His two eyes that were in blossom like lotus flowers, and rolling that fruit over those two eyes.
After sometime, He blossomed his eyes, gave that fruit to me and said, “You take this.”
With great happiness I took that fruit and went home.
Years rolled by. My husband was serving as a Major in charge of guarding the borders. When he came home during his vacation, we both went to Shri Kanchi Matham to have darshan of Shri Maha Swamigal.
It was evening time. Coming out of his room, the God of Compassion welcomed us with vatsalyam (paternal love), looked at me with limitless kindness and said, “Vaama Kuzhandhe! (Come, child! Come inside!)” He took us inside and told us to sit down.
Looking at my husband he asked, “You are serving in the Army, right?” and my husband replied, “Yes, I am in Siliguri.” Periyava asked him, “Can you get oranges there? Can you send me a basket of them?” “Yes”, replied my husband.
Sri Kanchi Maha Periyava looked at me and said, “There are two varieties of the orange fruit. Do you know?”
“I don’t know”, I said.
Periyava explained, “There are two kinds of oranges, one where the fruit sticks to the inner rind, the other, (he gestured with his hand as if He held a fruit and shook it near his ear), like this, rattles, with the fruit not touching the rind. It is this fruit that is tastier and sweeter than the kind that sticks to the rind. Always keep this in mind.”
He had given me a fruit earlier. Years later, He spoke to me about ‘the fruit that does not stick’ to its rind and gave me an insight into a very great truth. He taught me that one must live like ‘the fruit that does not stick’, unattached and unaffected by life. By calling me with the words, “Come, my child”, He made me His child. After I have myself become His child, where is the need of a child for me?
Author: Smt.Lalitha Raman, Sainikpuri
Source: Maha Periyaval – Darisana Anubhavangal Vol.2, Pages 120-122