There is no dearth of fun and frolic in the company of a Mahatma like Amma. Amma narrates several humorous and funny stories that carry spiritual wisdom. Here are ten such stories:
1. Oh, for the love of Bumbum!
[Amma: Worldly possessions and relationships can never give permanent or lasting pleasure. Many times we think that we will be happy if we get what we desire and if we don’t get what we want, we feel unhappy. In reality, many times, even if we get what we desired, we may end up unhappy]
Once a person visited his friend who was a doctor in a mental asylum. The doctor gladly received his friend and took him around the mental asylum to show what sort of people are undergoing treatment there.
In a particular place, a young person was seen locked in a caged room. He was banging his head on the rails of the gate and crying, “Bumbum, Bumbum!”
“What’s wrong with him? Who is Bumbum?” asked the visitor.
The doctor said: “Bumbum was his girl friend. He loved her very dearly; unfortunately she ditched him and eloped with another person. On account of this grief, this person became mad”
“Oh! Poor man” said the visitor and they went further around.
At another place, there was yet another patient, banging his head on the wall and shouting “Bumbum, Bumbum!”
The visitor was surprised. “This man is also crying Bumbum! Did he too love Bumbum and got rejected?”
“No” said the doctor. “He is the person who married Bumbum!”
2. I Stink only because of you!
Amma: Spiritual aspirants should try to come out of the disturbances in mind in relation to cleanliness and dirtiness. After all, the very human body itself is an epitome of dirt and filth. Poke into any orifice in the human body, be it ear, nose, mouth, skin pores, urethra or anus — what comes out of it is foul. It is this dirty body that we are all so fond of!
Once a man walking through a pathway, noticed human excreta on the way; he closed his nose in disgust and turned away to walk away. The excreta called out to the man “Hey! Why are you closing your nose and going away?”
The man replied “Oh! Your smell is disgusting”.
The excreta replied “It’s all because of you people. I was originally a very sweet smelling cake and fruit hardly a day ago. It is only after a human being like you consumed me, I ended up like this! Actually I should feel disgusted to see you!”
3. Hey, Monkey!
Amma: Vasanas (literally meaning smells — our behavioral tendencies, leanings and tastes borne out of habits, that get accumulated in us across several births) are strong indeed. A spiritual seeker has got to get rid of his bad vasanas and only then he can make a progress.
In reality, all are really Brahman (God). Our true innate nature is Brahman. Stooped in Maya and bound by our vasanas, we do not find it easy to grasp that our true state is Brahman.
Three friends – Rama, Krishna and Govinda are walking together. An acquaintance following them from behind,calls out “Rama!” and Rama turns back to see who was calling.
After a while he calls out “Krishna!” and Krishna turns back to see who is calling.
Same thing happens with Govinda too.
After a while, the caller shouts “Hey, monkey!” and instantly all the three turn back!
That’s the power of vasana!
4. He called me monkey!
Once a disciple came to the Guru dragging another disciple along, fretting and fuming. He complained to the Guru, “Maharaj, I had a difference of opinion with this fellow; we started arguing and as things got heated up, he shouted verbal abuse at me and called me a monkey. I cannot bear that insult. Please advise this man to behave properly with me”
The Guru laughed and said, “My dear son, since years, I have been teaching you that you are indeed Brahman and you have never felt it true or took it seriously. Now, this man calls you a monkey just once and you take it so seriously and feel offended!”
5. The kind-hearted old lady?!
Amma: People are generally so selfish that they will not offer anything to others without expecting something in return. If at all they give, they would only give what they don’t need.
A old lady was sitting behind the driver’s seat in a bus. The lady tapped the driver’s shoulder and offered him a couple of peanuts to eat. The driver took it gladly and ate it. A few minutes later, the old lady again offered a couple of peanuts to the driver and he accepted it with thanks and a smiling face.
Again it happened a couple of more times. The driver was surprised. He said to the old lady: “Thank you madam for your kindness, but why don’t you eat the peanuts? Why do you keep giving to me again and again?”
” I can’t chew peanuts, my son” said the lady.
“Then why do you buy peanuts?” asked the driver, surprised.
The lady said “I love chocolates; that’s why”
“I don’t understand” Said the driver.
“You see, I am very old; I have no teeth and I can’t chew peanuts. But the bunch of chocolates I have with me have all been chocolate-coated peanuts. So I put the chocolates in my mouth, melt the chocolate in my tongue and consume it, take out the peanut from my mouth and give to you” said the old lady!
6. The three legged Chicken!
[Amma: People believe that happiness can be obtained from worldly things but it is always elusive]
Once a man was driving his car in a country side. Suddenly he saw a chicken running by the side of the car at the same speed. Surprised at its speed, he increased the speed of the car, to see what happens.
Surprisingly, the chicken too started running fast , catching up with its speed. He was also very surprised to notice that the chicken had three legs! As he increased his car’s speed further, the chicken too started running as fast. After running like this for a while, finally the chicken entered into a house by the side of the road.
The man became very curious. He had never seen in his life a three-legged chicken, that too capable of running so fast. He thought he should meet the owner of the chicken and find more details about it. He parked his car near the house and went in to knock the doors.
An old man came and opened the door.
“Excuse me sir, I happened to chase a three-legged chicken that was running at lightning speed and I saw it entering into your house. Is it yours?”
“Yeah! It is ours. My son is a genetic Engineer and he created this chicken” said the old man.
“Why create a three legged chicken?” asked the man.
“You see, three of us — my son, my wife and myself live here in this house. We are all fond of eating chicken leg curry. For the three of us, one leg each is sufficient enough. In order to get it, we had to kill 2 chicken and one leg goes waste. My son thought if he could genetically develop a 3-legged chicken, then killing just one chicken would be enough for the three of us”.
“Ah! Brilliant! By the way, how is the taste of this chicken?”
“Who knows? We could never succeed in catching it so far” said the old man.
7. The Cuckoo Clock
[Amma: Some people believe they are extremely smart; they think they can easily fool others with falsehood and get away with it. But it is not so always.]
Once there was a drunkard who was extremely fond of drinking in bars with his friends; habitually he would came home very late, invariably beyond midnight. His wife was extremely annoyed with his behavior and she would constantly fight with him for his irresponsible habit.
With his conscience pricking, he told his wife one day: “Darling, I will make sure today to return home positively, sharp at 12 PM. This will be starting point and I assure you that I will improve on it day by day”.
That night, he went to the bar as usual, kept drinking with his friends; before he became conscious of the passage of time, it was already beyond mid-night — the time was nearing 3 AM. He rushed to his home.
Just as he unlocked the front door and entered into his house, the cuckoo clock that he had at home started sounding “cuckoo” three times. Suddenly he got an idea. He thought: “If per chance my wife gets awake now by hearing the sounds of my opening the front door, then she will come to know that it is now 3 AM; she is sure to blast me; Let me do one thing; I will now start cuckooing in continuation of the third ‘cuckoo’ from the clock and do it 9 more times so that the count comes to 12. Then she will not be angry with me as she would believe I have kept my word!”
The man felt proud of his brilliant idea and he started shouting ‘cuckoo’ 9 more times. Once finished, he went to his bedroom for sleep, thoroughly satisfied with his ploy.
The next morning, the man was sitting with his wife at the dining table for breakfast.
His wife said, “Dear, I think we should change our cuckoo clock; there is something wrong with it!”
“What, why?” asked the man, surprised.
The wife said, “Something funny happened last midnight. The cuckoo first sounded 3 times. There was a brief gap and then it cleared its throat and sounded cuckoo 4 more times; then it coughed and then cuckooed 5 more times. ‘The cuckoo’ then tripped over the coffee table, moaned in pain and uttered a few curse words too!”
8. More capacity?
Once a drunkard got severely ill and was admitted to the hospital. The doctor, after thoroughly examining him, said, “Hey! Looks like you are a hopeless drinker; your liver has really grown big…”
The drunkard asked enthusiastically, “Does it mean that I can drink more, doctor?”
9. Let me donate my body!
[Amma: There could be a selfish motive behind many people’s acts of philanthropy ]
Once an alcoholic was chit chatting with his friends in a bar. He said, “Actually, I have decided to donate my body to a medical college for their research after my death”
His friends were flabbergasted. One of them said, “Hey, what happened to you man? I know you since long and I have never seen such a sense of noble thinking or action in your life! Wow! What made you to take such a benevolent decision, my friend?”
The drunkard replied, “There is no such benevolence nonsense here! Recently I came to know that in medical colleges, they preserve the dead bodies donated for research by keeping them immersed in alcoholic spirit! I sincerely thought that my association with alcohol should continue even after my death! That’s how I got this idea!”
10. Drinking is good!
Once alcoholism was dangerously spreading amid village folks, ruining the lives of many families. A group of volunteers went from city to spread awareness about the dangers of drinking amidst the villagers.
A volunteer who wanted to convince the danger of drinking arranged a demonstration. He had 2 glass cups, one filled with water and another with alcohol. He picked up two worms and dropped one each into the glasses. While the worm in the water remained alive, the one dropped into alcohol died quickly.
“Now you know the difference, don’t you? Tell me what you have understood” asked the volunteer.
A man rose up and said, “It is good to drink alcohol, because it will kill the worms in the stomach”.
11. “Puliyum Kudicchu, adiyum kitti”
(Drank the tamarind juice and got the beating too)
[Amma: Whatever situations that come in our life, we should face them boldly, rather than trying to evade them. Any attempt to evade them may lead us to more trouble]
Once there lived a very stingy person who would go to any extent to avoid spending money. When payment of tax for his land was due, he opted to avoid paying it. A case was registered against him and a trial was conducted. The man pleaded that he had no means to pay the tax and he was prepared to undergo whatever punishment the judge prescribed.
The judge said, “If you can’t pay up the tax, then you can undergo 100 beating with a whip or drink 100 glasses of Tamarind juice and he could choose the option.
The miser thought about the options; he felt that drinking 100 glasses of tamarind juice was the easiest and he opted for it. As he started drinking the tamarind one glass after another, it was becoming increasingly difficult for him as the sourness was affecting his teeth; his tongue too started burning due to the acidity. With lots of difficulty, he could manage to drink some 6o glasses but beyond that, he could not bear the punishment. He felt like throwing up.
He said to the judge: “Sir, kindly spare me from this punishment; I would rather receive 100 beating from the whip”
Now the whipping started; it was extremely painful for him to bear it. By the time he was through with some 65 beatings, his skin started peeling all around the back and blood started oozing out. He writhed and cried in pain. He pleaded to the judge: “Please Sir, stop this punishment. I can’t bear it anymore; if you don’t stop it, I will die. Please pardon me. I would rather pay up the tax!”
12. Madhava, be patient!
[Amma: In this world, changing others is very difficult. Instead of attempting to reform others, the best way is to change ourselves in order to live in harmony with others]
In an airport lounge, a young man was seen taking care of his little boy, who was throwing up lot of tantrums. The man tried to pacify the boy by giving him an apple to eat. The boy threw it away and cried. The man said softly, “Madhava, be patient”. Then he offered a bottle of milk to the boy and the boy threw it away too. The man again said, “Madhava, be patient”. The man tried other tactics like giving the boy a doll to play or a piece of chocolate to chew, but none of these worked. The man continued to mutter “Madhava, be patient!” in a soft voice again and again.
Seeing this, a lady sitting by the side got very intrigued. She came closer to the boy, smiled at him and said softly “What is this Madhava? Why are you so upset? What do you want? Shall I get you some cookies? Do you want an ice cream? Shall I get you some balloons to play? Why don’t you stop crying, my little Madhava?”. The little boy did not show any reaction to her pampering.
The boy’s father tapped at the lady’s shoulders and said softly, “Excuse me madam, my son’s name is Mukunda, not Madhava”
The lady was surprised. “But I saw you saying again and again ‘Madhava, be patient!'”
The man replied soberly: “Madhava is my name”.
13. I didn’t create her!
[Amma: There is no point in blaming God for whatever problems we create out of our own faults]
Once a man wanted to get married desperately. He ran behind a girl, wooed her to become his girlfriend and had a romantic courtship for a while. In his mad love on her, he felt everything about the girl wonderful. One day he proposed to her and she accepted. Sooner they got married. Unfortunately, after marriage, everything turned topsy turvy. He realized sooner that his wife was really a very arrogant, disobedient, rough, quarrelsome and adamant woman.
All his dreams of having a long and happy married life was shattered. His wife was making his life a hell. One day the man went to church and cried in front of the lord” “Oh God! Why did you create my wife at all?”
The God answered: “Sorry my son! I only created the woman. It is you who created the wife!”
14. The Ants and the Elephant (1)
Once 4 ants were walking together across a forest. They saw an elephant coming on their way.
One of the ants said “What an arrogance! When we people are walking, how dare he comes on our way? I am going to kill him right now!”
The second ant said, “No, don’t go that far! Leave him to me; I will kick at his legs and break them; that will sure teach a lesson for him”
The third ant said, “Poor creature; don’t torture him like that! I will simply catch hold of his tail and throw him away from our path; that will be good enough for him!”
The fourth ant said, “Why do you all get worked up so much on a petty matter like this? See, he is alone and we are four; he will not have the courage to cross our path. Just leave him and he will bow to us and go away. Have some compassion on him!”
15. The Ants and the Elephant (2)
Once a group of ants were walking along the bank of a river. They saw an elephant taking bath in the river. Suddenly, due to flooding somewhere, the water level in the river started rising rapidly. Some of the ants were swept away by the rising waters and dragged into the river forcefully. The ants were struggling to keep them afloat in the rushing currents of water.
The water level rose up so much that only a small portion of the elephant’s back was visible above water. The elephant was struggling to keep its head and trunk above the water. The ants got swept closer to the elephant and they immediately climbed over to the back of the elephant in order to save themselves from getting swept away further.
Seeing these ants on the back of the elephant, other ants that were still on the shore, cheered and shouted in enthusiasm: “Come on, ants! Push that elephant further down into the water! Don’t allow him to rise up from the water. That’s how we should teach him a lesson!”