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Story Of Yogi Who Blinded Himself To Find God

There was a young man who fell in love with a prostitute in another village. There was a big river between the two villages, and this man, everyday, used to go to that girl, crossing this river in a ferry boat.

One day the rain was pouring down. It was very dangerous to cross, no ferry boat, but his heart was becoming mad with love for the girl, so he would go. With the help of a log, he crossed the river, and getting to the other side dragged the log up, threw it on the bank and went to the house. The doors were closed.

He knocked at the door, but the wind was howling, and nobody heard him. So he went found what he thought to be rope, hanging from the wall. By the help of that rope he climbed over the wall, missed his footing and fell. The girl came out and found the man in a faint.

‘How did you come into the house?’ He said, ‘Why, did not my love put that rope there?’
The rope was a cobra, whose least touch is death. The log was a festering dead body. The woman said, ‘Why give that heart to a woman like me? Why not give it to God?’ It was a thunderbolt to the man’s brain, who began to weep and pray. ‘Oh Lord, this tide of my love cannot find a receptacle in little human beings; it wants the infinite ocean; come Thou to me.’ So he became a Sannyasin.

One day he was on the bank of a river, and a beautiful young wife, came. The Yogi followed the girl to her home. The Yogi said to her husband, ‘I will ask you a terrible thing. I want to see your wife.’

He came in and the husband introduced him to his wife. ‘What can I do for you?’ asked the lady. He looked and then said, ‘Mother, will you give me two pins from your hair?’ ‘Here they are.’

He thrust them into his two eyes saying ‘Get away you rascals! Henceforth no fleshy things for you.’

So he went back into the forest, wept and wept. It was all that great flow of love in the man that was struggling to get at the truth, and at last he succeeded; he gave his soul, the river of his love, the right direction, and it came to came to God in the form of Krishna.
Then, for once, he was sorry that he had lost his eyes, and that he could only have the internal vision. He wrote some beautiful poems of love. In all Sanskrit books, the writers first of all salute their Gurus. So he saluted that girl as his first Guru.

Source – From The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, (Kolkata: Advaita Ashrama, 2016), 1.471-73.