Life of Swami Venkatesananda

29. Behold the Man

The Divine Life Trust Society

Om Namah Shivaya

Om Namah Venkatesaya

Sri Swami Ramananda, Ananda Kutir

Vina Venkatesam na Natho na Nathah,
Sada Venkatesam smarami smarami;
Hare Venkatesa praseeda praseeda,
Priyam Venkatesa prayachha prayachha.

Mysterious is the Lord; mysterious are His ways. He has sent Swami Sivananda to this world for spreading the 'Divine Life' in every nook and corner of it. Swami Sivananda has been supplied with the best equipments, the best men, the best place and the best of everything. Of the rarest young men surounding Swami Sivananda, Swami Venkatesananda has a very distinct place.

Swami Venkatesananda is a brilliant young person full of enthusiasm, Guru-Bhakti, earnestness, zeal, devotion, cheerfulness, humour, rare ability, humility, simplicity, sincerity, absence of vanity, non irritability, nobility, veracity and serenity. He works day and night, untiringly, to serve the Guru and his Mission. He edits the wonderful 'Yoga-Vedanta Forest University Weekly.' He looks after a major section of Swami Sivananda's correspondence and messages. He is the professor of 'Practical Sadhana' in the unique Yoga-Vedanta Forest Univesity. He looks after the main printing work, so dear to Swami Sivananda. He is the chronicler of Swami Sivananda. The day-to-day activities and instructions of Swami Sivananda have been (and are being) written down by him. He is the personal secretary to Swami Sivananda.

He is a rare specimen of Swami Sivananda's make-up. He has got a many-sided (or all-round) development. He is a practical Vedantin following the Kevala Advaita Philosophy of Sri Sankaracharya. He is an ardent devotee of Lord Venkatesa - Venkatachalapati of Tirupati. He has his daily worship, etc. He is an ideal Karma-Yogin, doing all kinds of work, without any distinction whatsoever. He is a gifted writer. He is a great Yogi, an adept in Yoga Asanas, Bandhas, Mudras, Pranayama, Nauli, etc. He is a good songster, fond of Bhajan and Sankirtan, and is able to play on some musical instruments, also. He is very humble and will - as does Swami Sivananda - salute everybody, first. His humorous nature will make all laugh away their worries and sorrows. He is very social and moves very freely with all people. There is no one whom he hates or (having come into contact with) does not serve in some way or the other. He is a good organiser. Even though he has not got any medical degrees, he treats patients successfully, homeopathy being his hobby. He is a fast stenographer. He has vast imagination, a keen memory, sharp intellect and power of observation. He observes fasts and Vratas regularly. He is an able speaker. He is a good friend of all. He is able to give sound advice to people. He is a good Sannyasi and an ideal Sadhaka. In early youth he renounced a promising job, and everything against the great dissuasion of his parents - who are now the most obedient servants of Swami Sivananda, to serve Swami Sivananda and his mission.

During the famous All-India Tour of his great Master, Swami Venkatesananda did yeoman's service. He was always with Swami Sivananda, attending every function, and against odds (and mostly in fast-moving trains) typed all the lectures of Swami Sivananda as well as of the other important persons, along with a very fine and picturesque narrative of the tour.

It is the 34th birthday of such a wonderful personality that is being celebrated by his Guru-Bhais and admirers on the 26th December, 1954. But the celebrations will have meaning only if all try to become so many Venkatesanandas, by sincere efforts. May the Universal Being manifested as 'Siva' bless him with many happy returns of the day, for serving the Guru and his Mission.