sweet punishment

15 march, itava, uttar pradhesh, bharata yatra 2008

the four-lane road to calcutta is beautiful. on either side of the road was spread the fields of cultivation. rice, wheat, mustard.. now its time for the potatoes. big, really big fields of potatoes. the machine ploughs the ground and farmers pickup the potatoes and clean the dirt. you could see sacks full of golden potatoes stacked by the road side to be taken to the market.

we stopped for lunch by a roadside ashram – eksharananda ashram. amma served everyone lunch. after it has been served, we would chant gita 15th chapter, than only we eat it. amma noticed that when the food was still being served one brahmachari had already started eating; he is in charge of vehicles and co-ordinator of 9 buses and 2 trucks.

after everybody had food, amma asked everyone what punishment should be given to him for eating before chanting gita. a few ideas were suggested.

amma called him. she was going to give a punishment; everyone was curious. what will be the decision? he is standing by amma’s side with an innocent face. everyone is switching their attention between him and amma.

amma took the mike and announced the verdict. “you sing a bhajan.”

aahhhha ahhahhah… everyone burst out including amma. it echoed on the four walls of the ashram. waves after waves laughter rippled through the crowd. one reason for the laughter was amma’s surprise decision. second reason is only for one who knows him. he is not used to sing and his sound is not that good.

he also laughed hearing the decision. but he looked puzzled. every one started clapping in rhythm. he thought for a moment and started singing.

ulakthin aadhara porul nee amma
gunamilayunna nayanathin oli nee amma. ..

(amma, you are the substratum of the world
you are the light of the eye which sees good. )

everyone joined.
… … .. … …
.. …. …
and there was a surprise. amma started singing with him.
… … …. ….. ..
.. … .. … . .
kanivinnu kanivaya karunanidhe
tellu kripa ennil arulitu karunanidhe.

(oh the embodiment of compassion
shower a little grace upon me, oh compassionate one.)

everyone clapped appreciating the song and the singer.

sweet punishment, eh?