Mystic Mahatma

Anecdote narrated by Sri Ganga Prasad, who in his childhood, was fortunate enough to know and interact with Swami Tapovanam:
Once, when I had gone to meet Swamiji with my mother and sisters, Swamiji asked one of the ashram inmates to bring a basket of oranges that had been gifted to him. He gave fruits to each one of us and then asked my sister, “How many people are there down below?” He started counting on his fingers along with her – one, two, three … There were some 5-6 people there. She held up the edge of her frock and he put seven oranges in it. She went down, but in a little while, we heard her screaming. A group of monkeys had surrounded her.

All of us rushed out, but Swamiji, being a fast walker, reached there first. He saw that the monkeys had taken the oranges and some had even climbed up the tree. Swamiji simply called out, “Ram! Ram!” and signalled them to come down. Most of the monkeys came down like obedient students. Swamiji said, “Rakko rakko,” and gestured to them to put the fruits down. He spoke Hindi with a Malayali accent, so ‘rakho’ in Hindi sounded like ‘rakko’! Anyway, the natives of that land (the monkeys) silently kept the oranges where he had indicated. Then Swamiji said, “Peechay, peechay,” meaning “Move back.” My sister was still crying. Swamiji instructed someone to take care of her and escort her. Then he had the entire basket of oranges brought and kept there for the monkeys. They came in a very orderly manner, picked up one orange each and went back up the tree.

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