Sri Ramana Maharshi Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi was one of the 20th Century’s most celebrated saints. Born in India in 1879, he spontaneously awakened to his eternal nature at the age of 16. Confronted by his father’s recent death, and overcome with fear for his own death, he felt compelled to experience death directly. In his full and profound inquiry into death, he discovered himself to be that life which cannot die.

After keeping silent for 11 years, Ramana began to answer questions from the people who had come to sit in silence with him. The name Ramana, which was given to him by one of his disciples, means, “that which resides in the heart of all being.”

Robert is the only American who was a direct disciple of Ramana Maharshi. At 18, in 1946, Robert arrived by train to the town of Tiruvannamalai, a few miles from Arunachala Mountain, where Ramanashram and his future teacher, Ramana Maharshi were located. He took a bullock cart to the Ashram, was admitted, and stayed the night. Early the next day while walking back from the mountain, towards the Ashram, he spotted Ramana walking down the path towards him. An electrifying energy coursed through his body, and the final remains of an ego left him. He felt completely surrendered, completely open. As Ramana got closer, Robert stripped off his clothes, approached Ramana and dropped to his guru’s feet. Ramana reached down grabbing Robert by his shoulder, and looked into Robert’s eyes with complete love and said,

"I have been waiting for you. Get up! Get up!" Robert stayed at Ramana Ashram for a little over three years. Visitors then were not allowed to stay long, so he lived in caves above the Ashram.
At a very young age, beginning at six or seven he experienced a continuing series of what he called visitations by a man with white hair and white beard that spoke to him in a language he couldn't understand. Years later, while thumbing through a book he saw a picture of the exact same man, a man identified in the text as being the venerated Indian holy man, the Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi. “I was shocked, The hair on my head and neck stood straight up. It was the same man who appeared to me when I was a baby in my crib and lectured me all those years.“