The lion and the goats

My eldest brother Hriday and my brother Chitta always used to get a hundred out of a hundred in mathematics. They took after my father. My sister Ahana descended to sixty and Mantu to forty. I descended to thirty-three. Fortunately, in the Indian system thirty-three is passing. Sometimes with greatest difficulty I would get forty.

I used to memorise everything in the book, but the teacher would change the questions on the examinations, so my memorisation did not work.

When my brothers were in college, my father used to tell them mathematical equations from memory while he was lying down relaxing. He would help them solve their problems with such speed and accuracy that he always astonished them. Such brains my father had! That is why my aunt used to say that my father was a lion and my brothers were goats.

My mathematics teacher at the Ashram was so nice! He was my brother's close friend and also my family's friend. He always liked me even though I could not learn mathematics well. He tried so hard to teach me, but I was useless. Later he translated the play that I wrote on Sri Aurobindo into Bengali.

Once when I returned to India after I had been living in America, I met my mathematics teacher in a music store. There was only one chair, so he stood up.

I said, "What? What?"

He said, "You have to sit!"

I said, "You are my teacher. I have such love and respect for you."

He said, "How can I sit when now I know who you are?"

He was going to buy a harmonium, but he went away without buying one. I was in the store buying a flute. I asked the owner if my teacher had showed an interest in any particular harmonium. The owner said, "Yes, he showed interest in this one, but he didn't buy it because it was too expensive."

So I bought that harmonium for him. I put it in a rickshaw and went to where he lived. Then I left the harmonium right in front of his door.

The next day he came to my house. Naturally, he knew I was the culprit.

My mathematics teacher's brother had been a pillar of the Ashram. He died about twenty years ago. About five years ago my teacher had a dream. In the dream his brother came to him and said, "Go and see Chinmoy tomorrow morning."

The next morning he came up to my house and was calling, "Chinmoy!" He told me, "In the dream my brother asked me to come and see you." He had such love and respect for his brother. He asked, "Is there any special significance in his request?"

I said, "Your brother didn't tell you that he has taken incarnation?"

He said, "No!"

I said, "Definitely, he is now in Russia!"

"My brother? At least twenty times, when he was seriously ill, he told me that he would go to Russia."

I said, "That is why your brother asked you to come to me. He wants you to know that he is now in Russia."

He was so happy because this was the very thing that his brother used to tell him.