“That man is so inaccessible that we know hardly anything of him. He keeps himself quite aloof from his neighbors. We must not interfere with him.”
…There is no alternative but to address the Yogi myself. I throw all conventions Hindu and European-to the wind, stand directly in his path and face him… I realize ruefully what a difficult task it is to help hermits to find their tongues. They dislike being interviewed, and they do not wish to talk to strangers about their intimate experiences. They dislike, especially, being asked to break their chronic silence for the sake of a sun-helmeted white man, who is tacitly assumed to possess neither sympathy with nor understanding of the subtleties of yoga” – An Excerpt
Finding himself guided towards Southern India, Paul Brunton ends up renting an abode in one of the white washed residential interiors of the coastal city of Madras. He has witnessed a lot of fascinating religious rites & rituals, within the short while that he has been in India. But, that one real Yogi, or sage that his keen eye; probing mind; & wandering spirit seek, yet eludes him.
Meanwhile, verandahs; tiled courtyards; water drawn from quaint wells; & walks by the lush tropical scenery along the Adyar river, as it meandered towards the Indian Ocean, became a not unpleasant part of his temporary Madras life. They provide him some immediate distraction, till he crosses paths with a very mysterious, & very elusive Yogi who is locally known to be a man of many deep Yogic secrets …
The Yogi’s air of mystery is enhanced because he clearly seems not the least bit interested in striking up random acquaintances; satisfying idle curiosities; or entering into polite conversations. But, Brunton realizes that he is not ready to let go of this rare chance to get to know more of such a man, even if it is at the risk of receiving the Yogi’s indifferent snub. His desperation to get an audience with this Yoga adept leads him to comically desperate measures that he perhaps thought himself incapable of resorting to!
Will such measures come in handy, & will the sombre Yogi condescend to even take him seriously? More importantly, will Brunton end up gaining anything of any real significance because of this encounter?
Click on the link to listen to my audio rendition of the chapter 5, of this path breaking spiritual classic. Also, look out for the next awe inspiring chapter, coming up soon, Chapter-6, ‘The Yoga Which Conquers Death’. Also, feel free to go back to listen or re-listen to the rendition of earlier chapters.