THOSE FASCINATING OBSTRUCTIONS

ADDRESSING a devotee named Mahendra Mukherjee, said Sri Ramakrishna: "You have no children. You do not serve anybody. And still you have no leisure! Goodness gracious!"

"You have no children to divert your mind. I know a deputy magistrate who draws a salary of eight hundred rupees a month. He went to Keshab's house to see a performance. I was there too. Rakhal16 and a few other devotees were with me and sat beside me. After a while Rakhal went out for a few minutes. The deputy magistrate came over and made his young son take Rakhal's seat. 1 said, 'He can't sit there.' At that time I was in such a slate of mind that I had to do whatever the person next to me would ask me to do; so I had seated Rakhal beside me. As long as the performance lasted the deputy did nothing but 16 Later known as Swami Brahmananda, the first president of the Ramakrishna Order gibber with his son. The rascal didnít look at the performance even once. I heard, too, that he is a slave to his wife; he gets up and sits down as she tells him to. And he didnít see the performance for that snub-nosed monkey of a boy." (49)