Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The once- Marxist's experience with God at Thirumala - Karunakar Reddy, TTD

Every part of my body felt it was touched by the Lord

By Karunakar Reddy

(From "God and I" column, Deccan Chronicle June 11, 2008)

I feel God’s presence all the time. He has given me an opportunity to serve Him.

When I was about six years old, I won a lottery at a village fest. The prize was a picture of Lord Rama’s coronation ceremony. When I held it in my hand, I plunged into the depths of unexplainable bliss. My mother had the picture framed and we prayed to it. Few days later, I was suffering from high fever.

In my delirium, I saw Hanuman come down from the picture and stroke my forehead. My fever subsided soon after. It may have been an illusion, but I remember the feeling to this day as very real. I lost some of my faith when I joined the Leftists while in Class 10. However, between 1987 and 1989, I happened to read books written by noted novelist Dasaradhi Rangachari and found my spirituality again.

I used to regularly visit the picturesque Japali Anjaneya Swamy temple in Tirumala and developed a sense of attachment and reverence for the place.

After becoming the chairman of Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams, I was one day standing in the sanctum sanctorum. As I closed my eyes, I saw an intense golden illumination behind my eyelids. For several minutes I could see the light in the dark room.

I had the same experience when I carried the charan paduka of the Lord in Tirumala. Every part of my body felt as if it was being touched by God. I consider both these experiences his blessings.

Early in my life I was a Marxist and spent two years in prison during the Emergency. I was just 16 years old then — the youngest person in prison. Morarji Desai was the oldest.

Probably because of my extremist views then, and my intensely spiritual leanings now, I have a better awareness of things.

The writer is the chairman of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams

No comments: