Christmas Evening with Ganesan in Tiruvannamalai


There was a wonderful sharing offered by V Ganesan, Bhagavan Sri Ramana’s great nephew, on Christmas evening.

We arrived at his house a bit before 5 PM.


It was so nicely decorated.



Ramana’s picture received special care in decoration. Ramana looks just fine in Christmas lights and garlands. 


The porch is lined with garlands. Someone has gone to much work to make the place feel a bit like Christmas.



There was a baby doll, dressed in Sadhu orange, in a ‘crib’ next to Ganesan’s chair. Is this Baby Jesus? 


As people gathered, Christmas music was playing. This was the first I have heard this year, and I noticed a sense of nostalgia at the Christmas feelings the music evoked.


Before the program started, two of Ganesan’s nieces came out to be with him.


They both carried stuffed animals, Christmas presents I suspect.


People wait with pleasant anticipation for him to start his sharing.


We meditate with him.


Then chant, Om namo Bhagavate Sri Ramana. 


And he starts his sharing.


He says that he has had three teachers in this life – Sri Ramana, making up the core, Ramakrishna Paramahansa, and Jesus Christ. Ramana taught him, “Who am I?”, spiritual inquiry. From Ramakrishna he learned to “melt” (into the teaching/teacher). Jesus combined both. Sri Ganesan likened the three to a trident (like that carried by Lord Siva), where the central trident element is Ramana, and the two supporting pieces are Ramakrishna and Jesus.   

He told humble stories about how, with both of these masters, he had been urged by spiritual mentors to read about them. His mind, though, did not want anything new, feeling that Ramana was enough. Finally each of his teachers ordered him to read, and he did. He read of the life or Ramakrishna, and the Gospel of Thomas, which talks of Jesus’ three most secret teachings. As he read of both of these holy men, he found himself crying.


These three teachings are:

I am the Word, and the Word is with God, and is God.
I am that I am.
Love Life.

On reading these, he meditated for several days, focusing on each of these in turn until he came to a deep understanding of each one.

He came to see that, “I  am the Word …” means to know Knowledge. This knowledge is not of the mind, but is deeper, more akin to the knowledge of your own existence. You know this whether you are thinking or not.

He saw that, “I am that I am” repeats what Ramana  (and Robert Adams) had taught. We all say “I am this” or “I am that” many times each day. One example is when I say, “I am Richard.” Ramana and Robert Adams taught that, “I am” is the truth. “I am Richard” is not true.  

“Love  life” is to live in the now, as God looking at God.

As I thought of this later, it seemed as if he was reacting to finding the deep Hindu teaching of God as Sat-Chit-Ananda, Being-Consciousness-Bliss. These three terms are hyphenated to indicate that they are not three things, but descriptions of the same ‘thing.’ He found these in the secret teaching of Jesus.


Ganesan spoke form his heart, as always.


When the sharing was done, he pranamed to us all.


As he walked out, food was being placed on a table. We had all brought goodies to share with one another on this holy night. We all talked and enjoyed the company. As is usual, we saw friends here that we had not seen in a while. It is good to see friends on Christmas.


We had no Christmas celebration at our home. It was so nice to have this as our Christmas!

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4 Responses to “Christmas Evening with Ganesan in Tiruvannamalai”

  1. ereuthe Says:

    Richard, Thank you so much for your blog. I have been unable to come to Tiru these past two years and your blog brings me right there. I especially appreciate seeing Ganesanji here with his “neices” on Christmas. We were lucky to spend Christmas with him several years ago. Thank you also for your posting on A Ramana’s death and burial. He and Ganesanji are my teachers and friend. Yours in Bagavan, Elizabeth

    • richardclarke Says:

      Dear Elizabeth, Thank you for the kind words. I am so happy to be able to share Tiruvannamalai with you, especially things of Ranesanji and your beloved A Ramana. I hope the postings on A Ramana were good for you.

      Om Arunachaleswaraya namah,

  2. clairesjourneyjournal Says:

    Hi Richard: I am a friend of Bill “Siva” Wilson and will be in Tiruvannamalai beginning this Friday for at least 2 weeks on a retreat. I will be staying at the Ramana Towers hotel with my group. If you would like to connect at some point that would be wonderful, I would love to meet you. My name is Claire Goodman, I don’t have any cell number to send but my e-mail is

  3. drpvssnraju Says:

    Ganesan is a very kind and learned man.

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