To John: Article in July 1882 Theosophist on Ramalinga Pillay Avergal
Sep 02, 2004 06:20 PM
by Daniel H. Caldwell
I found this transcription on the WWW. I assume it is
verbatim with the original.
Vallalar and the statement of Tholuvure Velayudham Mudaliar
Edited by: MADAME H.P BLAVATSKY*
"Coming events foretold""
When, in answer to a direct challenge, the author of the Occult World
wrote to the Bombay Gazette (April 4, 1882), he began his letter with
the following profession of faith:
"I was already sure, when I wrote "The Occult World," that the
Theosopical Society was connected through Madame Blavatsky, with the
great Brother-hood of Adepts I described. I now know this to be the
case, with much greater amplitude of knowledge." Little did our loyal
friend fancy, when he was penning these,- lines that his assertion
would one day be capable of corroboration by the tesitimony of
thousands. But such is now the state of the case. Sceptics and
prejudiced or interested witnesses in general may scoff as they like,
the fact cannot be gainsaid. Our friends-and we have some who, regard
us neither as lunatics not imposters-will atleast be glad to read the
Statement which follows:
While at Madras, we were told that a well known Tamil Scholar, a
Pandit in the Presidency College, desired to have a private
conversation with us, The interview occurred in the presence of Mr.
Singaravelu, President of the Krishna Theosophical Society, and of
another I trustworthy Theosophist. Mr. C. Aravamudu Ayangar, a
Sanskritist of Nellore. We are no more at liberty to repeat here all
the questions put to us by the interviewer than we are to divulge
certain other facts which would still more strongly corroborate our
repeated assertions that (1) our Society was founded at the direct
suggestion of the Indian and Tibetan Adepts; and (2) that in coming
to this country we but obeyed their wishes. But we shall leave our
friends to draw their own inferences from all the facts. We are glad
to know that the learned Pandit is now engaged in writing in the
Tamil and Telugu languages a more amplified narrative than he has
given here and that he is taking steps to obtain certificates of
respectable living witnesses who heard his Guru prefigure the events
which have had so complete a fulfilmant- (ED)
* Madame H.P Blavatsky, daughter of Lieutenant General Alexis Hahn
von Rottenstern-Hahn : grand daughter of Privy Councillor Andrew
Fadeew and of Princess Helene Dolgorouk and the relict of the
Concillor of State. Nicephore Blavatsky late Vice Governor of the
province of Erivan Cancasus of H.I.M. the Czar of Russia.
**Reproduced with the kind permission of the Society.
Second Tamil Pandit of The Presidency College, Madras
To the Author of "Hints on Esoteric Theosophy"
Sir, - I beg to inform you that I was a Chela of the
late "Arulprakasa Vallalar," otherwise known as Chithambaram
Ramalinga Pillay Avergal the celebrated Yogi of Southern India.
Having come to know that the English Community as well as some Hindus
entertained some doubts as to the existence of the Mahatmas (Adepts)
and as to the fact of the Theosophical Society having been formed
under their special orders and having heard moreover, of your recent
work in which much pains are taken to present the evidence about
these Mahatmas pro and con-I wish to make public certain facts in
connection with my late revered Guru. My belief is, that they ought
effectually to remove all such doubts, and prove that Theosophy is no
empty delusion nor the society in question founded on an insecure
Let me premise with a brief description of the personality of and the
doctrines taught by the above mentioned ascetic Ramalinga Pillay.
He was born at Maruthur, Chithambaram Taluq, South Arcot, Madras
Presidency. He came to live at Madras at an early period of his
career, and dwelt there for a long time. At the age of nine, without
any reading, Ramalingarn is certified by eye witnesses to have been
able to recite the contents of the works of Agustia and other Munis
equally respected by Dravidians and Aryans. In 1849, 1 became his
disciple and though no one knew where he had been initiated. Some
years after he gathered a number of disciples around him. He was a
great' Alchemist. He had a strange faculty about him, witnessed very
often, of changing carnivorous person into a vegetarian, a mere
glance from him seemed enough to destroy the desire for animal food.
He had also the wonderful faculty of reading other men's minds. In
the year 1855, he left Madras for Chidambaram and thence to Vadalur
and Karungooli where he remained a number of years. Many a time
during his stay there, he used to leave his followers, disappearing
and no one knew whither, and remaining absent for more or less
prolonged period of time. In personal appearance Ramalingam was a
moderately tall spare man - so spare, indeed as to virtually appear a
skeleton - yet withal a strong man, erect in stature and walking very
rapidly with it face of a clever brown complexion, a straight thin
nose very large fiery eyes and with a look of constant sorrow on his
face. Towards the end, he let his hair grow long, and what is rather
unusual with Yogis, he wore shoes. His Garments consisted but of two
pieces of white cloth. His habits were excessively abstemious. He was
known to hardly ever take any rest. A strict vegetarian, he ate but
once in two or three days and was then satisfied with a few mouthfuls
of rice. But when fasting for a period of two or three months, he
literally ate nothing living merely on warm water with a little sugar
dissolved in it.
As he preached against caste, he was not very popular. But still
people of all castes gathered in large numbers around him. They came
not so much for his teachings as in the hope of witnessing and
learning phenomena or "miracles" with the power of producing which he
was generally credited though he himself discredited the idea of
anything super natural asserting constantly that his was religion
based on pure science. Among many other things, he preached that
1. Though the Hindu people listened not to him, nor gave ear to his
counsels yet the esoteric meaning of the Vedas and other sacred books
of the east would be revealed by the custodians of the secret - the
Mahatmas - to foreigners who would receive it with joy.
2. That the fatal influence of the Kalipurusha cycle, which now rules
the world, will be neutralized in about 10 years.
3. That the use of animal food would be gradually relinguished.
4. That the distinction between races and castes would eventually
cease and the principle of Universal Brotherhood would eventually be
accepted, and Universal Brotherhood would be established in India.
5. That what men call "God" is, in fact, the principle of Universal
Love - which produces and sustains perfect Harmony and Equilibrium
through out all nature;
6. That men when once they have ascertained the divine power latent
in them, would acquire such wonderful powers as to be able to change
the ordinary operations of the Law of gravity etc.
In the year 1867, he founded a society under the name of SAMARASA
VEDA SANMARGA SANGAM which means a society based on the principle of
Universal Brotherhood, and for the propagation of the true Vedic
doctrine. I need hardly remark that these principles are indentically
those of the Theosophical Society. Our society was in existence for
five or six years during which time a very large number of poor and
infirm persons were fed at the expense of its members.
When he attained his 50th year (1873) he began to prepare his
disciples for his departure from the world. He announced his
intention of going into Samadhi. During the first half of 1873, he
preached most forcibly his views upon Human Brotherhood. But during
the last quarter of the year, he gave up lecturing entirely and
maintained an almost unbroken silence. He resumed speech in the last
days of January 1874, and reiterated his prophecies herein after
narrated. On the 30th of that month at Mettukuppam, we saw our master
for the last time. Selecting a small building, he entered its
solitary room after taking an affectionate farewell of his Chelas,
stretched himself on the carpet, and then, by his orders the door was
locked and the only opening walled up. But, when a year later, the
place was opened and examined, there was nothing to be seen but a
vacant room. He left with us a promise to reappear some day but would
give us no intimation as to the time, place or circumstances. Until
then, however, he said that he would be working not in India alone.
But also in Europe and America and all other countries to influence
the minds of the right men to assist in preparing for the
regeneration of the world.
Such in short, is the history of the great man. The facts I have
referred to above are within the knowledge of thousands of people.
His whole occupation was the preaching of sublime moral doctrines
contained in the Hindu Shastras and the instilling into the masses of
the principle of Universal Brotherhood, benevolence and charity. But
to his great disappointment, he found among his large congregations
but few who would appreciate his lofty ethics. During the later part
of his visible earthly career, he often expressed his bitter sorrow
for this sad state of things, and repeatedly claimed:
"You are not fit to become members of this Society of Universal
Brotherhood. The real members of that Brotherhood are living far
away, towards the North of India. You do not listen to me. You do not
follow the principles of my teachings. You seem to be determined not
to be convinced by me. YET THE TIME IS NOT FAR OFF WHEN PERSONS FROM
RUSSIA, AMERICA (these two countries were always named) and other
foreign lands will COME TO INDIA AND PREACH TO YOU THIS SAME DOCTRINE
OF UNIVERSAL BROTHERHOOD. Then only will you know and appreciate the
grand truths that I am now vainly trying to make you accept. You will
soon rind that THE BROTHERS WHO LIVE IN THE FAR NORTH will work a
great many wonders in India, and thus confer incalculate benefits
upon this our country."
The prophecy has, in my opinion, just been literally fulfilled. The
fact, that the Mahatmas in the North exist, is no new idea to us,
Hindus, and the strange fact that the advent of Madame Blavatsky and
Colonel Olcott from Russia and America was foretold several years
before they came to India, is an incontrovertible proof that my Guru
was in communication with those Mahatmas under whose directions the
Theosophical Society was subsequently founded.
THOLUVURE VELAYUTHAM MUDALIAR, F.T.S.
MUNJACUPPAM SINGARAVELU MUDALIAR,
President of the
Krishna Theosophical Society
KUMBAKONUM ARAVAMUDU AYANGAR,
Fellow of the
Nellore Theosopical Society.
The official position of Velayutha Pandit as one of the Pandits of
the Presidency College is an ample guarantee
of his respectability and trustworthiness."
G. MUTHUSWAMY CHETTY
Judge of the small Cause Court, Madras
and Vice-President of the Madras Theosophical Society
Editor's Note: This is one of those cases of previous foretelling of
a coming event which is least of all open to suspicion of bad faith.
The honourable character of the witness, the wide publicity of his
Guru's announcements, and the impossibility that he could have got
from public rumour, or the journals of the day, any intimation that
the Theosophical Society would he formed and would operate in India
all these conspire to support the Inference that Ramalingam Yogi was
verily in the counsels of those who ordered us to found the Society.
In March 1873, we were directed to proceed from Russia to Paris. In
June, we were told to proceed to the United States where we arrived
on July 6th. This was the very time when Ramalingam was most forcibly
prefiguring the events which should happen. In October 1874, we
received an intimation to go to Chittenden Vermont, where, at the
famous homestead of the Eddy family, Colonel Olcott was engaged in
making his investigations - now so celebrated in the annals of
Spiritualism of the so-calls "metarialization of Spirits".
In November 1875, the Theosophical Society was founded and it was not
until 1878 that the correspondence began with friends in India, which
resulted in the transfer of the society's Headquarters to Bombay in-
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