Ramalinga Pillai

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Chidambaram Ramalinga Pillai Avergal (1823 – 1874?) was a celebrated yogi of Southern India, also known as "Arulprakasa Vallalare". He is said to have prophesied the arrival of H. P. Blavatsky and H. S. Olcott to India in 1873, a year before they actually met and six before the stepped on Indian soil.

Ramalinga Pillai was born at Maruthur, Chidambaram Taluq, South Arcot, Madras Presidency. He went to live at Madras (now Chennai) at an early period of his career, and dwelt there for a long time. At the age of nine, without any reading, Ramalingam is certified by eyewitnesses to have been able to recite the contents of the works of Agastia and other Munis equally respected by Dravidians and Aryans.

According to his disciple Tholuvore Velayudham Mudaliar, a member of the Theosophical Society, among many other things he preached:

(1) Though the Hindu people listened not to him, nor gave ear to his counsels, yet the esoteric meaning of the Vedas and other sacred books of the East would be revealed by the custodians of the secret—the Mahatmas—to foreigners, who would receive it with joy;

(2) That the fatal influence of the Kalipurusha Cycle, which now rules the world, will be neutralized in about ten years;
(3) That the use of animal food would be gradually relinquished;
(4) That the distinction between races and castes would eventually cease, and the principle of Universal Brotherhood be eventually accepted, and a Universal Brotherhood be established in India;
(5) That what men call “God” is, in fact, the principle of Universal Love—which produces and sustains perfect Harmony and Equilibrium throughout all nature;

(6) That men, once they have ascertained the divine power latent in them, would acquire such wonderful powers as to be able to change the ordinary operations of the law of gravity, etc., etc.[1]

Mr. Mudaliar stated that Yogi Ramalinga prophesied the coming of Mme. Blavatsky and Col. Olcott:

During the latter part of his visible earthly career, he often expressed his bitter sorrow for this sad state of things, and repeatedly exclaimed:

“You are not fit to become members of this Society of Universal Brotherhood. The real members of that Brotherhood are living far away, towards the North of India. You do not listen to me. You do not follow the principles of my teachings. You seem to be determined not to be convinced by me. YET THE TIME IS NOT FAR OFF, WHEN PERSONS FROM RUSSIA, AMERICA (these two countries were always named), and other foreign lands WILL COME TO INDIA AND PREACH TO YOU THIS SAME DOCTRINE OF UNIVERSAL BROTHERHOOD. Then only, will you know and appreciate the grand truths that I am now vainly trying to make you accept. You will soon find that THE BROTHERS WHO LIVE IN THE FAR NORTH will work a great many wonders in India, and thus confer incalculable benefits upon this our country.”

This prophecy has, in my opinion, just been literally fulfilled. The fact, that the Mahatmas in the North exist, is no new idea to us, Hindus; and the strange fact that the advent of Madame Blavatsky and Colonel Olcott from Russia and America was foretold several years before they came to India, is an incontrovertible proof that my Guru was in communication with those Mahatmas under whose directions the Theosophical Society was subsequently founded.[2]

Regarding his death, Mr. Mudaliar wrote:

On the 30th of [January, 1874], at Metucuppam, we saw our master for the last time. Selecting a small building, he entered its solitary room after taking an affectionate farewell of his Chelas, stretched himself on the carpet, and then, by his orders, the door was locked and the only opening walled up. But when, a year later, the place was opened and examined, there was nothing to be seen but a vacant room. He left with us a promise to reappear some day but would give us no intimation as to the time, place, or circumstances. Until then, however, he said that he would be working not in India alone, but also in Europe and America and all other countries, to influence the minds of the right men to assist in preparing for the regeneration of the world.[3]

Mme. Blavatsky wrote that "Ramalingam Yogi was verily in the counsels of those who ordered us to found the Society".[4]

Online resources



  1. Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Collected Writings vol. IV (Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 1989), 134-135.
  2. Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Collected Writings vol. IV (Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 1989), 135-136.
  3. Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Collected Writings vol. IV (Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 1989), 135.
  4. Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Collected Writings vol. IV (Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 1989), 136.