THE holy chronicles of Jillellamudi contain many tales of interest about ants, termites, crickets, scorpions, bulls, dogs, cats, rats, crows, snakes and what not! Just akin to the roles played by the spider, the serpent and the elephant in the story of Kalahastee. swara, many missions were fulfilled by the dumb creatures in the sanctified vicinity of Holy Mother. Lord Ramachandra crossed the sea after constructing a bridge from Rameswaram to Lanka with the help of monkey battalions, and even a squirrel contributed its mite in that holy enterprise by rolling in the sand and shaking the sand in the sea. The eagle king Jatayu valiantly resisted the demon king Ravana, and fought to the last drop of its blood to uplift the banner of justice. In “Sakuntala”. we note that in the spiritual climate of sage Kanva’s forest retreat, the cruel animals eschewed their ferocity and led a life of peaceful co-existence with mild animals like deer and cows. In the same way. I found in Jillellamudi, a bitch suckling the young kittens, even though they are born enemies. On every Sunday evening, when we obtained permission from Holy Mother to return to our homes, two dogs regularly accompanied us, wagging their tails, to the 7th mile, and stayed there until we got into the bus, and afterwards, saying “Tata” with their loud barks, the faithful friends returned to Holy Mother’s residence. Here is a shining example to show that not only human beings are attached to their fellow visitors of Jillellamudi. but also that dumb animals ventilate their feelings through such gestures of relationship.
Often, while we were engaged in the inspired talks of Mother, six young kittens daily jumped over the bamboo thatty from the adjoining kitchen into our hut, and reverentially paid their salutations to Holy Mother and used to go away calmly. Some young pups and kittens were often found asleep or in prayerful mood before Motner. A number of incidents about scorpion bites were witnessed by me, but without any harm to the victims. One afternoon, sister Prabhavathi was preparing coffee to serve us, and two scorpions stung her at a time. At the instance of Mother, sister Prabhavathi smilingly prepared and served us coffee. Once a fatal disease attacked the dogs in that locality, and Mother fore told that within five minutes three dogs would expire. Accord ingly, three dogs rushed into the presence of Mother, whirled round and round, howling and screaming and fell dead on the spot. Mother asked us to bury them at a distance. On one occasion, a bull by name ‘Ramudu’ rushed turbulantly into the pendal, where a number of devotees were immersed in offering puja to Holy Mother. Panic broke among the gathering, and when Mother gently cried, Ramudu, go away peacefully”, the bull calmly crossed over a sleeping bile without trampling on it, and went on its way like a meek lamb. Numerous incidents are to be told about snakes that form one of the interesting chapters in the life history of Holy Mother. The termites also occupy some pages in the volume on Her life, and till recently, many of us might have seen white-an hills in the almyrah of Sri A. Seshagiri Rao. One day, Mother asked one of us to remove the mounds of white ants. Thereupon, the almyrah was opened and a dazzling light was found through one of the apertures of the mound and a divine serpent was found there. When asked about it, Mother simply evaded by saying that there was nothing in it.
One hot summer day. I was fed sumptuously at Jillella mudi; I slept soundly under the new palmyrah-leaf pendal. I did not know how long I slumbered under the cool shade of the roof. At about 4-30 p. m., I awoke from my deep sleep. To my utter dismay, I observed thousands of red ants creeping all over my body. They were freely moving all about me, in my eyes, nostrils, ears, lips and on every part of the body. At the sight of so many thousands of ants on my body, I shuddered, and sat upright, and on looking behind, I saw holy Mother sitting and chatting with Sri R. Ramachandra Rao, my teacher. I asked Mother why she kept mum without waking me from sleep, while many hordes of ants were invading my body. With a flash of laughter, she replied, with a clapping of her hands, that my body was covered with ants just like a corpse. I could not catch the implied meaning in Her joke, but simply rose up from the mat on which I was lying, and went my way, dusting off the ants from my body. I hurried straight to the canal and had a dip in the water and returned to Mother. Inscrutable are the ways of Mother! Otherwise, thousands of those ants might have bitten me to death, leaving no trace of flesh on my body. Thus the EPISODE OF ANTS comes to an end.
“No one is coming (to Jillellamudi) and going in vain. The very desire to visit is in itself fruitful. Visiting is more so. It will never be in vain. afterwards.