Arunachala Hridaya: The Heart of Arunachala

This is an account of an affair of the Heart but not in the usual sense. My very first connection with Arunachala was when I was fifteen years of age and I borrowed a book from the library on the subject. To this day I have no idea what caused me to pick up that book other than an interest even at that young age in the spiritual. I was already practicing yoga and around that time the Beatles had just come to Indiato meet their Maharishi. This book however mentioned none of these things but spoke of this mysterious Mountain which over the centuries had called so many to come here to India. Although largely unaware of it at the time reading this book kindled what was to be a lifetime longing to come to India although it was unattained until I was more than half way through my life.  This longing never left me and when eventually I did come here I had almost given up hope of ever coming.  Yet when it came it happened very fast. To be here in India was miracle enough but to find myself here at the feet of Arunachala, this Beloved Mountain filled me with awe and wonder.

This was just the beginning…

Little did I know just how this Heart Connection with this Blessed Sacred Mountain would change this life totally…

and that I would eventually find myself living here now as I do. But that story is written elsewhere. This is a tale of a meeting with the Beloved, a meeting and merging in the Heart that was to burn like fire therein and continues to this very moment. Somehow from very early on in this life deep in my Heart I knew somehow that we came into this life not only to know the Love of the Divine but to BE that. In my early days of being here when life and all I knew began to dissolve, on some roof top somewhere here this was what I prayed for in offering this life to Him, that this life be fully for that,  not just to feel the Divine Love but to totally Be That. Of course little did I know then just what that truly meant and how without my doing it would be a surrender of all I was and all I ever knew.  There is a saying that says something like ‘Be careful what you ask for’ and this is very true in that when a wish is granted, and especially a Divine one, we never know quite what we have really asked for until it begins to unfold in our life. And thus has it been so in this instance. We think we have this life that we are fully in control of until something happens so very deeply within as slowly, slowly the Divine reveals that all along nothing has ever been our own and that in the most wonderful way this life is held deep in the Heart of the Beloved.

The Divine is made manifest in each person’s life in a way that is unique to them and for me despite much uncovering and many glimpses over the years previously, being here at the feet of Arunachala blessed this Heart with more than I could ever have envisaged.

The unfolding never ends, the journey continues, sometimes in utmost joy and at others it is as though every pain one ever knew is laid bare at His Blessed feet. Yet the sense of being held in His Heart is strong and gives much needed strength and courage whatever comes. Slowly, slowly the trusting deepens, Divine Love challenges everything and will reveal even those parts of ourselves we don’t wish to see. Especially here with Arunachala He shows us everything from the most beautiful and the utmost supreme Love, to the very darkest shadows of our psyche. Yet in all that comes He shows us always the Real from the unreal, the True from the false. All is His Grace even our apparent surrender in the offering to the Divine of all we are is but returning to the Beloved that which has ever been His. We have only been unaware of that fact. Through His Grace and true willingness of Heart all is offered at His Beloved Feet and we are slowly undone never to be the same again.

The Beloved and His Grace dwell in our very deepest Heart and is the Divine Essence of all beings. Although it may be obscured in most of us there are times in this life where if extremely fortunate we may be blessed to see the Beloved’s face in so many different ways, as in this instance in the Presence of this Beloved Mountain Arunachala, in life as it moves within and around us, or in the Heart of another who appears in front of us by Divine Grace whether it a friend, a Master or a more human beloved. Once this glimpse is given however briefly we will never again be the same, for once the Divine is seen in whatever form before our eyes we can never again live this life in the same way as we may have done previously. He touches our Hearts, the very Core of our being with His Love and this self as we knew it is no more. Of course we must have the willingness for this Surrender to take place for it will touch each and every aspect of our lives and bring to awareness the most hidden parts of our being which will bring many challenges. Yet if we have the willingness then all will unfold in the Divine Heart.

Whatever comes all is ultimately well if there is enough trust in the Beloved’s Heart, in this case in the form of Arunachala. The Grace of the Divine carries us always in whatever form it may appear and when all else around us is uncertain and moving as the wind blowing through the desert sands, this is when we must find the utmost trust in the Divine. There will be times when that trust is deeply challenged and we may at times feel lost, abandoned even, yet if we hold true to what has been revealed deep in our Hearts we are shown so very clearly that absolutely everything in every aspect of our lives is cared for in the vastness of the Beloved’s Divine Heart. 

© Shankari 2015

Guest post by Shankari, Sound Therapist and author of the forthcoming ‘Racing the Storm.’

Arunachala by Ashok Kumar at 

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