The Self alone, the Sole Reality,
Exists for ever.
If of yore the First of Teachers
Revealed it through unbroken silence
Say, who can reveal it in spoken words?
– Ekatma Panchakam, Sri Bhagavan.
Sri Bhagavan said,
“When the four elderly Sanakadi rishis first beheld the
sixteen-year-old Sri Dakshinamurti sitting under the banyan
tree, they were at once attracted by Him, and understood that
He was the real Sadguru. They approached Him, did three
pradakshinas around Him, prostrated before Him, sat at His
Feet and began to ask shrewd and pertinent questions about
the nature of reality and the means of attaining it. Because of
the great compassion and fatherly love (vatsalya) which He felt
for His aged disciples, the young Sri Dakshinamurti was
overjoyed to see their earnestness, wisdom and maturity, and
gave apt replies to each of their questions. But as He answered
each consecutive question, further doubts arose in their minds
and they asked further questions. Thus they continued to
question Sri Dakshinamurti for a whole year, and He continued
to clear their doubts through His compassionate answers.
however, Sri Dakshinamurti understood that if He continued
answering their questions, more doubts would arise in their
minds and their ignorance (ajnana) would never end. Therefore,
suppressing even the feeling of compassion and fatherly love
which was welling up within Him, He merged Himself into the
Supreme Silence. Because of their great maturity (which had
ripened to perfection through their year-long association with
the Sadguru), as soon as Sri Dakshinamurti assumed Silence,
they too automatically merged into Supreme Silence, the true
state of the Self.”
Wonderstruck on hearing Sri Bhagavan narrating the story
in this manner, Sri Muruganar remarked that in no book was it
mentioned that Sri Dakshinamurti ever spoke anything. “But
this is what actually happened”, replied Sri Bhagavan curtly.
From the authoritative way in which Sri Bhagavan replied and
from the clear and descriptive way in which He told the story,
Sri Muruganar understood that Sri Bhagavan was none other
than Sri Dakshinamurti Himself!