Sri Krishna Bhikshu
Edited and Translated by
Pingali Surya Sundaram
© Sri Ramanasramam
First Edition :
CC No: 1115
Tiruvannamalai 606 603
Murty & G.V.Graphics, 1-1-651/A,2,
Gandhi Nagar, Hyderabad.
Ph : 55591076.
Chennai 600 015
SRI Ramana Leela in Telugu was one of the three
biographies of Sri Ramana Maharshi published during
Sri Bhagavan's physical presence at Sri Ramanasramam.
The other two biographies were Self Realisation (English)
and Sri Ramana Vijayam (Tamil).
The Telugu book was authoured by Sri Kirshna
Bhikshu (1904 - 1981), whose original name was Oruganti
Venkata Krishnayya. A qualified lawyer, he was also a
Government official and a frequent visitor to Sri
Ramanasramam right from the early 1930s.
Sri Ramana Leela was first published in 1936 and
was revised over a period of time in subsequent editions.
As the book has some very valuable details about
Sri Bhagavan, especially of his works, we have thought it
appropriate to place it before a larger audience; hence this
We hope that this biography will be a welcome
addition to the large body of Ramana literature in English.
8 JANUARY 2003
Sri Bhagavan's ways are inscrutable. Just at a time when
I thought that my brief foray into the literary world had
come to an end after a little over a decade, I got a long-
distance call from the President of Sri Ramanasramam, Sri
V.S.Ramanan, asking me to undertake an English translation
of Sri Krishna Bhikshu's Telugu biography of Sri Ramana
Maharshi, Sri Ramana Leela. I took this as a command of
Sri Bhagavan and immediately agreed to take up the
assignment, though I was aware that it was a formidable
task. I was secure in the belief that Sri Bhagavan would
ensure the completion of the job.
A little before this assignment came my way I attempted
to read this very book and gave it up as being too tough for
me. Sri Krishna Bhikshu's book, first published in 1936 and
subsequently revised, is written in a highly classical and
Sanskritised style preferred by scholars and pandits of his
time. It is replete with several passages which to me appeared
to be abstruse and convoluted. Also at several places, the
narration does not proceed in a smooth and logical manner.
This style of writing has largely gone into disuse.
In attempting to translate the book I was faced with
many difficult choices and finally concluded that what I
should attempt is not a literal translation but one which
is closely faithful to the original. For this purpose I had to
paraphrase many passages, re-arrange certain paragraphs
and generally make the book readable. It is for the readers
to judge whether I have succeeded or not.
In this endeavour I have received generous help from
Prof Mohan Ramanan, of the Department of English,
University of Hyderabad and my daughter, Dr. P. Sailaja,
of the same Department. Neither of them has gone
through the Telugu original and the numerous useful
suggestions they gave after going through the manuscript
have provided an invaluable input. Also, the original
abounds in Sanskrit quotations which were explained
to me by Dr. Poranki Dakshinamurty, former Deputy
Director, Telugu Academy, Hyderabad. My grateful
thanks to all of them. I also wish to thank Sri V.S.
Ramanan who has given me this opportunity in the first
place. May Sri Bhagavan shower them with His grace.
This book is the result of Sri Bhagavan's anugraha. In
all humility, I offer it to Him with all its blemishes,
confident that with His characteristic graciousness,
kindness and indulgence He will deign to accept it.
17 - JULY' 03