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The Spiritual gurus over the ages have adopted their own unique ways of assessing and testing the spiritual strength and the level of advancement of the souls of the spiritual seekers before admitting them as their disciples. There is no prescribed method in this regard and each guru devised his own method as per his divine wish and heart.

Soottukkole Ramalinga Swamigal, the great Siddha Purusha and whose Jeevasamathi is situated in Mannargudi, was practising a very unique way of testing the drive and commitment of his disciples for spiritual advancement. He used to take a cup of juice after grinding the remnants of poisonous creatures like snake, scorpion, centipede and the legs of crabs and offer it to the disciple. In addition to drinking this cup of juice without any reservation of resentment, the disciple should also willingly bear the brunt of a very hot rod (Soottukkole). Only those persons who pass these tests will be admitted into his divine fold and he will take them on the path of spiritual progress.

Ideal renunciation is not symbolised only by wearing orange robe and rudhraksh. On the other hand, achieving a desireless mind alone is the real attribute of renouncing the world. It is really a very rare divine gift of His grace that a person attains spiritual wisdom and hence such spiritual Sadhakas willingly sacrifice food and sleep in their intense drive for the spiritual fulfillment. Only those persons who subject themselves willingly to all the tests, however severe they may be, should aspire to become the sadhakas and disciples of spiritual gurus. Those persons who do

not possess the moral strength, perseverance and the enormous will cannot travel on the difficult spiritual path. The spiritual aspirants should not be under the misconception that the road to the attainment of spiritual wisdom will be smooth and sweet like banana, sugarcane and sugarcandy. If they hold such a view, they can never pass the severe test of the spiritual gurus.

On the other hand, if they develop the necessary will, perseverance, the moral strength and braveness of heart to bear the initial severity of the guru’s spiritual tests, then there is no doubt that they, after sometime, can certainly enjoy the everlasting spiritual bliss and heavenly joy far more sweeter than the worldly banana, sugarcane and sugarcandy.

Hence it is evident that the Soottukkole is only a testing device in the divine hands of Swamigal to subject the spiritual aspirants to test and assessment of their readiness for the spiritual journey and the ultimate attainment of spiritual wisdom and enlightenment.

– Translation of an excerpt from VEDHANDHA
BASKARAM, a time-honoured spiritual text.

Soottukkole – the divine rod of every household; effects good change in one’s; karma, protects and ensures dharma in the country; endows physical well-being on all those who surrender at the lotus feet of Soottukkole Mayandi Swamigal and He will shower his divine motherly grace on all those so as to enjoy the everlasting heavenly bliss.

– Porkizhi Poet So.So. Meenakshi Sundaram.