Brother M greeted us with a heartful smile.
I said, “The last time we met was at your house, and after a long time, we are meeting you again here”.
“Yes”, replied brother M and looking at the things in our hands, he said, “First, go to the temple and come back, we can talk later.”
We went to the temples of Mother and Sister Hyma and spent some time in silent prayer. We went back to Mother’s room and found that it was locked. We got the keys from Brother A and entered Mother’s room and prayed in silence for some time and went downstairs.
Brother D and another person were seated in the office room. I could not recollect the name of the other person. C became ecstatic. He had spent one year of his childhood, studying here. His sacred thread ceremony was held in Mother’s presence, so all those memories made him ecstatic.
C: “These days, we are able to come here as soon as we want, but during those days, there was no clear path to come here. One had to travel on the banks of the fields to reach here. Yet we used to come here. Due to my father’s job, we used to live in Rayachoti. From there, we used to travel to Kadapa via bus and then take another bus to Nellore, then by train, we used to reach Bapatla and again via another bus, reach Seven Mile. From that point, we used to walk through the muddy fields to reach Jillellamudi. As soon as we saw Mother, all that fatigue would disappear. During that time, there were not many facilities here. We used to sleep wherever we found some place, sometimes we used to sleep for the entire night under a tree. We were not bothered about mosquitoes, ants or any other insects. There were so many people like us. Once a person comes here, he can hardly go back. It used to feel like we were going to our own home. Everyone used to feel like that in themselves”.
Many people including communists and atheists used to come here to debate with Mother, but after speaking to Mother, within few minutes, they used to fall at Her feet without any more words. There was no one who did not cry after feeling Her genuine love. There used to be a communist who came here to debate and test Mother, but he surrendered himself to Mother. Similarly, many people including brother Yarlagadda Bhaskar, Yarlagadda Lakshmayya surrendered themselves to Mother. When Mother was here, it was like a festival. No one knew who came or who left. Nobody questioned anybody staying here for a long time. Everyone got their meal, no one knows how, but the necessary food items were always available. Some people just saw Mother and stayed back forever.
This room belongs to Brother James, but he could never find a place to lie down in it. It was always filled with the luggage of others. Many people kept their luggage in his room and left. Some people slept here, poor Brother James found it difficult to even find a place to sleep in his room. Many times we used to find him sleeping in his chair.
During the floods in 1977, this place was filled with water and snakes, scorpions etc, that came along with the water. There were many kids here. As medical facility was unthinkable, everyone was worried that the insects would bite them. So, everyone went and asked Mother, who said, “Do not kill. They are scared just like you. They will not bite anyone, so do not harm them”. Just as Mother said, not even a single incident of snake bite was heard. Everyday, there were many miracles like this, but at that time, we did not know that they were miracles. They all happened very naturally.
As we were talking, we reached brother M’s house. The tea we brought along with us was still hot in the flask, so we had it along with him at his house.
During the 1970s, there was a devotee in Guntur. One day, he could not sleep. He knew that Mother drank coffee in the morning. So, he prepared coffee and travelled from Guntur to Jillellamudi via Bapatla on his bicycle. He reached Jillellamudi by 3 am and gave her the coffee he brought from Guntur. In those days, devotees used to be such. It is difficult to know in how many ways they were blessed by Mother.
One day, someone criticised him saying, “You always say, Mother, Mother. What is the greatness of your Mother?”. To which he replied, “I shall show you”, saying so, he touched electric wires and nothing happened to him. Thinking that there is no power running through the wires, they switched on the fan and surprisingly the fan started revolving. He said, “If you want to check, come and hold the electric wires”. At the same moment, Mother felt a shock that shook her body in Jillellamudi. She said, “He is testing me”. We did not know who was testing whom. She did not tell us, but after coming to know what happened, we were all surprised.
Brother Yarlagadda Bhaskar who was from an average agricultural family wrote Mother’s biography. He wrote as Mother narrated but he did not have any knowledge about it. He was neither literate nor a writer himself. He never knew how he wrote it. While Mother was narrating her life events, the characters appeared before his vision and enacted the scenes. He wrote what he heard and saw. Now, he does not remember anything. Through brother Bhaskar, Mother proved that being spiritual is being simple. In this way, the book “Amma Jeevitha Mahodadhi” came into existence.
Brother M, his wife and C started recollecting their memories.
“Brother Nadira wrote many songs on Mother. For example, let’s look at a few lines written by him.
“Many people screamed in hunger - ‘Mother’!
Mother summoned them all to come and eat.”
Sri Sri, a contemporary poet, said that he screamed in hunger. This hunger led to violence, atrocity, hatred and fascism which will never solve the problems of our world. Mother’s path is different. Whoever came to her, she fed them with love. She used to plead with people to eat. All problems in this world can be solved with the philosophy ‘The entire world is mine, everyone is my child’. Such was her love and it could solve all problems. Ultimately, the world has no other go but to take shelter in love. Love is that which brightens one’s life. This is the reason why the problems that could not be solved by intellectuals, were easily resolved in the presence of Mother. Even though she was brought up in a traditional Brahmin family, she never gave importance to caste or religion. She used to say, “I never discriminate between qualities, what to speak of discrimination based on caste and religion.” She never looked at the mistakes of anyone. Many times, she said, “One who looks at mistakes is not a mother.” She used to say, “If I start looking at one’s mistakes, no one will be able to cross the seventh mile.”
Mother always looked at both good and bad people with equal vision. She never had anything to do with caste. Some people who thought that Mother is doing some magic and creating illusion, used to surrender to Mother after talking to her for a few minutes. She was love personified. In her presence, many used to cry without any visible reason. This used to be a very common scene in those days, but Mother used to remain silent. When asked why they were crying, she used to say, “They have come here to cry, let them cry.”, but she never explained the reason behind their strange behavior. She used to keep silent on such matters. A third person could never understand.
The great mantra, “Jayaho Maata Sri Anasuya Rajarajeswari Sri Paraatpari” was first recited by “Moula Ali”, who is a muslim. Today, this great mantra that came from a muslim devotee is being chanted by lakhs of people all over the world. One can hear continuous chanting of her name at this place.
In those days, five blind people used to be here. Among them, Kasu Radhakrishna Reddy and Kasu Venkateswar Reddy were brothers. Both were blind by birth. Both studied music in Vizianagaram Music college, and sang beautifully. One day, Kasu Venkateswar Reddy came to the Mother and sang a movie song, “God is happy, it is man who suffers”. He sang in a mesmerizing manner. After listening to him, she said, “Who said God does not suffer? Do you know the pain He goes through? If you grasp it, then will you be able to tolerate it? His suffering is due to the way you all are. Your suffering is not even a minutest part of His suffering. Even after everything is being taken care of by Him, you talk as if you are suffering a lot.”
Kasu Radhakrishna Reddy is a great singer, he used to sing very melodiously. His tomb can be found under the Lord Vinayaka’s idol at the entrance of this village. He was a well built person. He used to have a strong appetite. One day, he ate fifty idlis and drank six glasses of buttermilk. Someone said, “Please have a few more.” He said, “Not now, I have to have lunch soon.” It was 10 am at that time. In the beginning he used to stay in Satya Sai Prasanthi Nilayam. He did not like that place, so he came here. Even though he was blind, he traveled all over the country. He never had any money but no one knows how he traveled. He used to sing songs beautifully. When he sang in the temple, Mother used to come down. He used to sing with great passion from his heart. Mother who was sitting in her room upstairs used to say, “He is singing, he is calling, I have to go.”
He had great intuition too, by listening to the sound of the utensils, he understood how much quantity of food was being cooked. Based on this, he limited his food intake even if he was hungry. One day, we both were travelling in a bus to Hyderabad. Someone touched him, immediately he enquired, “Hello Mohan Rao, how are you doing?” When asked, how do you know him, he said that he met Mohan Rao on a train almost five years ago. He remembered the touch from five years ago. Even though God did not give him eyes to see, He gave him awesome intuition.
He was invited many times by the government to participate in the All India Radio Music Festival. He performed on stage in Delhi. Wherever he went he always came back to Jillellamudi. In the end, he passed away in the abode of Amma. Lord Vinayaka’s idol is built on his tomb. This can be seen near the entrance of the village.
During those days, water was a scarcity, using buckets we brought pond water into the village. He brought water in a large bucket on his shoulders by following the sound of the bullock cart moving in front of him.
While everyone was sitting in the hall, he used to say, “Today, Amma is going to wear a green color saree.” Rest of us would think that he was just guessing, but Amma used to come out in a green color saree. We never understood how he was able to see better than us.
One day he cried saying, “Amma, God has given me a birth without eyesight. I want to see you.” Amma said, “Look my son.” and gave him eyesight. He was blind by birth and had holes in place of eyes, but he was able to see. He saw Amma and he requested her, “Amma, after seeing you with these eyes, I do not want to see this world, please take away my eyesight.” He lost his eyesight immediately. All this happened in front of our eyes. This is the story of brother Radha.
“Now, please hear my story too.” saying this brother M narrated this incident.
In the 1960s, we were living in Hyderabad. Me and my brother were still unmarried. My family had decided to find a suitable bride for my brother. He did not want to get married. One day without informing anyone, he left for Srisailam forest. He was reluctant to marry. I followed his footsteps and left our house and went to Bombay. My parents were shocked and my father went to Amma to describe these events. Amma said with a smile, “Get ready for the marriage, where will he go? He will come back.” Due to their belief in Amma, they started marriage preparations. Meanwhile, Amma appeared in my brother’s vision and said, “While your parents are suffering, what are you doing here, come to Jillellamudi immediately” and disappeared. Immediately, he came to Jillellamudi. Amma explained to him about the importance of marriage and she attended his marriage. For some unknown reason, while I was in Bombay, I strongly felt that I have to go to Jillellamudi. It was as if someone was strongly pulling me with a rope. I started immediately to Jillellamudi and reached in four days. Everything ended happily. Amma has done many miracles like this but back then, we never knew that these were miracles. Everything Amma did felt natural. She never said anything. She used to do everything just with her mere intention.
There are many devotees like us, maybe I should not call them devotees. Amma herself said that, “I do not have any disciples or devotees, all are my children.” Each one of them has their own story and history. If we try, even trees here will tell their stories.
to be continued ….
All rights reserved. This article has been translated by Ganesh A, which was originally posted in teluguyogi.net on July 28, 2012. The content or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express permission of the publisher.