- Maha Periyava - "Did you use the positive or the negative approach?"
Maha Periyava - "Did you use the positive or the negative approach?"
I once went to a place called Vaasangere in Karnataka to have His darshan. He was camping in the mines area which belonged to Sandur Maharaja. Swamigal was a sitting on a tarpaulin along with the other devotees. Annathurai Iyengar was also there with a few students from his Veda Patashala. It was around 10.30 in the night.
The Sandur Maharaja, Maharani and their son were also there. His son was a Reader in the Department of Mathematics at Yale University. He had a PhD degree in Maths. His parents were standing there respectfully before Him but he appeared to be quite casual. Swamigal conversed with the Maharaja and Maharani in Kannada for a while.
After a while He turned towards their son and asked,
"Where do you live? What are you doing?"
"I am a Reader in Maths Dept at Yale University", he replied.
"What have you studied, you have done your PhD in which branch of Maths", He asked.
Their son did not answer for a minute, hesitating to reply as he was unsure if Swamigal could make sense of what he had studied. His father goaded him to reply.
"Quantum Theory.", he said, matter-of-factly.
Swamigal drew a +ve sign on the mud and circled it; He also drew a -ve sign and circled it. Pointing to the two signs Swamigal asked him,
" Did you use the positive or the negative approach in your Quantum Theory PhD thesis study?"
Their son who was a bit indifferent until then, was startled to hear this from Him. He was trembling for words and suddenly became more respectful and replied,
"Why did you not take the Negative Approach, will you do you it later", He asked.
"It is difficult to use the Negative Approach", he said.
Swamigal looked at Annathurai Iyengar and said, "He is saying it is difficult; can you ask the Veda students to recite this particular verse from Rig Veda?", and prompts them with first two words.
The students recited that particular verse for 5 minutes. After this He turned to their son and said, "you must have obtained your PhD in your 24th or 25th year correct?"
"In my 25th year", said he.
"Rig Veda, the verse which you heard now, talks both about the Positive and the Negative approaches", He said.
The son was astonished and requested the students to recite the verse again.
"Are you now thinking that you need not have spent lakhs and lakhs of rupees for your 25 years of education and if only you had studied the Vedas you would have learnt this Truth in just 7 years?!", replied Lord Parameshwara.
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