This is the story of the life of Trailinga Swami, an Indian Saint who did tremendous sadhana for over 250 years and attained to the heights of spiritual knowledge. Even during his life, many realized him to be an incarnation of Shiva. Shree Maa has had an intuitive sense of him for many years of her life, and would like to share stories from Trailinga Swami’s life with all of us as a source of inspiration for perseverance in our sadhana.
Trailinga Swami’s father, Narasingh Rao, was a leader of his village in Andra Pradesh, and being a virtuous and truthful man, he was respected by all his community. His mother, Bidayabati, faithfully supported her husband, performed service to others, and performed her own sadhana along with him. The couple remained childless for many years, but desired a son to carry on the family’s lineage.
One day Bidayabati, in her most sincere desire to fulfill her husband’s wishes for a son, asked him to take a second wife, by whom he may have a child. Eventually he accepted her suggestion and married again, while she increased her devotion and sadhana to Lord Shiva. At one point during her sadhana, she dreamed of Shiva’s arrival with a son. The dream soon came to fruition, when she became pregnant. At an auspicious astrological configuration, she gave birth to a beautiful son, whom they called Shivaram, later known as Trailinga Swami.
After one year had passed following Shivaram’s birth, Narsingh’s second wife gave birth to a son whose name was given as Shridhar. The two sons were raised together in a very happy and harmonious household.
One day during Bidayabati’s meditation on Lord Shiva, the young Shivaram fell asleep in front of the Shiva Lingam. Upon rising from her meditation, Bidayabati saw a light emanating from the Shiva Lingam she had been worshiping, and moving directly in front of her son, Shivaram.
Shivaram was always a profound and seriously introspective child. For the most part he avoided regular childhood past times, preferring instead to spend his time in solitude. He was quite indifferent to the demands of the society around him. Rather, his great joy was to listen to religious stories told by his mother.
His father wanted him to marry of course, because without marriage he would not be entitled to participate in Vedic rites of worship or in community affairs, but Shivaram adamantly refused. He viewed it as an impediment to his spiritual growth. Ultimately the father became resigned to his son’s tenacity of purpose, and Narasingh instructed his younger son, Shridhar, instead to marry and carry on the family name.
When Shivaram was 40 years old, his father died. He had a great desire to leave the world and take up the life of a religious mendicant, but his Mother requested him to remain with her so long as she maintained her body. She promised him that if he would stay with her until her death, he would find the highest blessings and the ultimate liberation. He agreed, and remained in the family home.