A Parable by Sri Ramakrishna

A disciple said to his Guru that his wife loved him very much and so he could not renounce the world. The disciple used to practice Hatha Yoga. To convince him of the hollowness of his plea, the Guru taught him some secrets of this branch of Yoga. One day, all of a sudden, there was great consternation in the disciple’s house, and wailings and sobbing were heard all around.

The neighbours came running to the house, and saw the disciple in a room, quite motionless, in a peculiar convoluted posture. They all thought that life was, extinct in the body. The wife of the disciple was crying: “Alas! Where have you gone, dear? Why have you forsaken us? Ah! we never knew that such a calamity would befall us!”

In the meantime, the relatives brought a cot to take the corpse out for cremation. Then they found themselves face to face with a very serious difficulty. As the man was in a contorted posture, his body would not come out through the door. Seeing that, one of his neighbours, brought an axe and began to cut the wooden frame of the door. Till then the wife was weeping in an uncontrollable fit of sorrow; but no sooner did she hear the sound of the axe than she ran to the spot, and, though still weeping, anxiously enquired what they were about.

One of the neighbours told her that they were cutting the door as her husband’s body could not otherwise be taken out owing to its peculiar posture. “No, no,” cried out the wife, “don’t do so now. I have been widowed and there is none to look after me. I have to bring up my fatherless children. If you now cut the door, it cannot be repaired again. Whatever was to happen has happened to my husband. You had better cut his hands and legs and take him out.”

Hearing this, the Hatha Yogi at once stood up; the effect of the drug having gone by this time, and bawled out, “Woman, you want to cut my hands and legs?”

And so saying, he went away with his Guru renouncing hearth and home.

~ Parable number 106, Tales and Parables of Sri Ramakrishna. (Source)

~ Cover painting: Blessed Soul (Bhagavan Sri Ramakrishna)
by Nicholas Roerich

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