Here are two favorite quotes from Anandamayi Ma. I think almost all of this comes via Ram Dass, but at the moment I can’t remember what book I saw this in. So I assume that Ram Dass or one of his assistants spoke, wrote, or compiled almost all of the following, and I’ll link to one of his books once I can confirm this.
In form and beyond form
I’d like to share with you two bits of wisdom from one of my favorite saints, Anandamayi Ma.
The reason I like these quotes is because they convey two different planes of consciousness, one of them in which she exists ‘in form’ and the other in which she’s ‘beyond form.’
In each of these, when she’s speaking, she’s speaking from that place at that moment, and it gives you a chance to hear from a true ‘free’ being on different levels of consciousness.
So, when she is in the level of ‘form,’ she has millions of devotees and beings in her physical presence here on Earth. For me, it was like being with a wild deer or fox or something like that, just an intimate, non-human connection, non-social.
Anandamayi Ma on dualism
In the first quote she’s talking from dualism. She says, “This body has lived with father, mother, husband, and all. This body has served the husband, so you may call it a wife. It has prepared dishes for all, so you may call it a cook. But if you look at the thing from another standpoint, you will realize that this body has served none but God, for when I served my father, mother, husband, others, I simply considered them as other manifestations of the almighty, and served them as such. When I sat down to prepare food, I did in spirit of divine service. Hence, I was not quite worldly, though always engaged in household affairs. I had but one ideal to serve all as God, to do everything for the sake of God.”
So when she is in form, she is serving the formless through the forms.
Anandamayi Ma on consciousness and life
Here’s the other quote: Once Paramahansa Yogananda — who is no slouch himself — asked Ma to tell him something of her life: “Father, there is little to tell. My consciousness has never associated itself with this temporary body. Before I came to this earth, I was the same. I grew into womanhood, but still, I was the same. When the family in which I had been born made arrangements to have this body married, I was the same. In front of you now, I am the same. Even afterwards, though the dance of creation changes around me in the hall of eternity, I shall be the same.”