Immortal imprint

Srimat Swami Somanandaji Maharaj, the senior most monk of the Ramakrishna Order in the Math, in Chennai, has attained mahasamadhi.

But this is only the physical end for the 98-year-old, as his life and teachings will remain immortal in the minds and hearts of followers of the revered spiritual institution, which has its branches across the country and beyond.

A look at the Swamiji’s journey speaks volumes about him. He had mantra diksha, and sannyasa in 1948, from most revered Srimat Swami Virajanandaji Maharaj, the sixth president of the Ramakrishna Order.

Serving in the field of education, he was a guiding light for several students and teachers for decades. He served along with former Minister of Education Avinashilingam in Ramakrishna Mission Vidyalaya for several years.

He had served as the head of Ramakrishna Ashram, Salem, for many years. Since then he had been staying at Ramakrishna Math, Chennai.

Simple and easily approachable, the Swamiji blessed several devotees with his guidance during his long, holy life.

Self-reliant and strong-willed, Somanandaji Maharaj, till his last moment, took the name of Bhagavan Sri Ramakrishna and lived in a blissful state. His demise was a great loss to all monks and devotees, who were deriving inspiration from his holy life.

But his teachings will continue to guide them and their generations forever. In the words of Swami Vivekananda, “Strength, strength it is that we want so much in this life, for what we call sin and sorrow have all one cause, and that is our weakness. With weakness comes ignorance, and with ignorance comes misery.”