Intense Sadhana & Sanyasa

As Maragatham was getting weaker day by day physically and mentally, she wanted to get her son Seshadri to get married to his aunt Venkatalakshmi’s daughter Kaakini (a name from Lalitha Sahasranama). That time, Seshadri was seventeen years old.

When Venkatalakshmi consulted her brother Ramaswamy Jodithar about the marriage proposal, he said that Seshadri had sanyasa yoga and hence it was better to look for different alliance. That time, Maragatham was in the hall and got shattered on hearing this news.

Maragatham was consistently fasting and torturing her body. She refused to take medicine. Grief stricken Seshadri, along with his brother Narasimhan, was offering garland of tears at the feet of his mother.

That was an auspicious Ekadasi day. Calling Seshadri by her side, Maragatham embraced him. Mother and son, together in perfect harmony sang Kaamakoti Sastrigal’s composition “Amba Sive” with heartfelt devotion. After that Maragatham chanted the following stanza from AdiSankara’s Bhaja Govindam, patting Seshadri three times on his heart;

Sat Sangathve Nissangathvam

Nissangathve Nirmohathvam

Nirmohathve Nischalathathvam

Nischalathathve JeevanMukthihi

Mother indicated the path of salvation to the son. She imparted the subtle knowledge of the ultimate (Brahmagnana) to her son. Then keeping her hand on her son’s heart chanted thrice the sloka in Sanskrit which meant

Darshan of Chidambaram bestows Mukthi

Being born in Tiruvarur bestows Mukthi

Death in Kasi bestowsMukthi

Thought of Arunachala bestows Mukthi

That sound pierced Seshadri’s heart as the Sound of Arunachala. Maragatham uttered thrice “Arunachala, Arunachala, Arunachala”. The very thought of Annamalai opened the doors to the kingdom of Salvation for Maragatham.

Seshadri held his mother’s divine body close to his chest. Despite being deeply rooted in the yoga of dispassion and vairagya, Seshadri was deeply shaken at that particular moment. Having lost his mother, Seshadri sought refuge in the divine grace. He spent most of his time in Pooja.

There, in his Pooja, along with Mother Kamakshi, Sri Rama, was the picture of Arunachala with five peaks. He had never seen the Arunachala mountain in person. His mother’s words, which were deeply embedded in his heart and remaining etched in his thoughts, he visualised the same and made a picture of it and had it in his Pooja.

Seshadhri was intensely doing japa and meditation forsaking food and sleep. Though his uncle Ramaswamy Jodithar and his wife asked him to reduce the Upasana by putting more restrictions, he continued to do it in Sri Chakrathalwar Sannidhi in Sri Varadharaja Swami temple and in Sri Kamakshi temple. Sometimes he never came home for 2-3 days and his uncle used to look for him in the city.

Due to nuisance caused by people, Seshadri started going to burial ground in the night and his uncle came to know little later. He requested him to stay at home and do the Upasana. This continued for some time. Ramaswamy Jodithar felt very sad that he was responsible for Seshadri’s condition because he told that Seshadri had sanyasa yoga and hence the marriage proposal was stopped. The people in the city were also of the same opinion. But, Seshadri told his Chittappa that he had no interest in the marriage and one should not get worried based on other’s opinions.

Once, a relative by the name Parasurama Sastrigal cautioned Seshadri of going to burial ground but Seshadri was trying to debate the benefits of doing sadhana in the burial ground. Parasurama Sastrigal did not get convinced and he said that it was against aachaaram and hence one should not enter the house. Seshadri replied that he would not enter the house anymore. He left home and started living under the trees and near the ponds and was doing intense sadhana in the temple and burial grounds.

During that time, a yogishwar by the name Sri Balaji Swamigal from Haridwar visited Kanchipuram. On seeing Sri Balaji Swamigal, Seshadri had tears in his eyes with emotion and fell at his feet and sought his blessings. Seshadri was given jnana sanyasa by Sri Balaji Swamigal based on his intense vairagya.