COSMIC STORY: RAMAKRISHNA AND THE SMOKER
Ramakrishna was one of the great saints of the 19th
century. He was always surrounded by a group of devotees. He was very fond of one devotee, but this man did not come often to receive Ramakrishna's darshan. One day Ramakrishna went to this devotee's house with his followers. They sat for some time, and then Ramakrishna asked "Do you have a smoke?" Ramakrishna's disciples were shocked, as they thought it a filthy habit. The host also asked "Why are you asking for a smoke?" After some cajoling, Ramakrishna explained that he knew the man had avoided coming to see him because he was ashamed of his addiction to tobacco. So he had thought that if they both could smoke together, then this barrier would be eliminated! Such was the love of Ramakrishna for his devotees.