were built and then a search was made for a priest (Pulari) to perform the daily worships.
Choice fell upon the young Gadadhar and the inscrutable ways of providence were working
again. The boy threw himself into the work with an unsurpassable fervor and would spend
hours and hours in Sadhana before the Divine Mother. Great changes were rapidly seen in
the boy and people who had eyes to observe saw that he was lifting himself in the
spiritual world. Ram Kumar died within a year and Gadadhar got the job of the full priest.
The bereavement only made him hanker more for divine
inspiration and he startedmanifestations of getting trances and would often weep, writhe
in pain before the image who was to him a living and life-giving mother. In his own words
lie had a vision of a Divine Mother. About his experience he said later "I could not
bear the separation any longer: life did not seem worth living. Suddenly my eyes fell on
the sword that was kept in the Mother's temple. .... I jumped up like a madman and seized
it, when suddenly the blessed Mother revealed Herself to me, and I fell unconscious on the
floor. Exactly what happened after that, or how that day or
the next passed, I do not know-, but within me there was a steady flow of undiluted bliss
altogether new, and I felt the presence of the mother."4
From that day Gadadhar were truly Shri Ramakrishna
Paramahansa, a God intoxicated saint who was in perpetual contact with his Divine Mother.
He subjected himself to various spiritual exercises and was often taken as insane. The
family wanted to cure him of his various manifestations put down to a form of insanity and
he was married in 1859 to Saradamoni Devi of Jairambati village. Sri Ramakrishna was then
23 years of age and Saradamoni Devi was a mere child of slightly over 5 years.
****History of the Rama Krishna Math and Mission by
Swami Gambhirananda, Advaita Ashrama, Calcutta, p. 11.