The Leela of Disciplehood
Near Tiruvannamalai, there is a village called Poondi in Kalasapakkam taluk. There was a Swami living there; a great saint called Poondi Swami. They would call him Kalasapakkam Aathu Swami. He is one of the very great saints India has seen in the last hundred years! He was worshipped as an Avatār of Lord Muruga. His Samādhi is still there in Poondi. I have not seen him physically, in the body. But since he was a great saint, through the enlightenment energy, he gave Me darśan during My childhood.
Poondi Swami sat in one place without moving, and lived that way for sixty years! According to the records, he has lived for approximately 300 years. People say, “Yes, my grandfather has seen him; my great grandfather has seen him!”
He was a great Paramahaṃsa. He lived established in nirvikalpa Samādhi, with overflowing bliss, without even bothering about his body. He is the example I will give to explain being in the nirvikalpa state, not even caring about the body. When he sat in nirvikalpa Samādhi, ants would enter into his body and bore their way to the other side through his leg, but he would simply be sitting!
Before I was born, My mother went to have his darśan. My great-grandfather also went with her. They prostrated in front of him. As soon as they got up, he gave them some rice in their hands and said, ‘My appan (literally means ‘father’ but it is the local way of referring to Paramaśiva Himself.) himself will be born!’ They did not understand what he was saying. From where he sat, Arunācala can be seen well. Pointing to the Hill, he told them, ‘Appan will be born, go!’ They took the rice, put it in their mouths. He blessed them and sent them away.
Many years later, when I said I wanted to leave home for Sanyās, My great grandfather said, “At that time itself, Poondi Swami said this would happen, but I did not believe it fully!