ANYONE COMING INTO THE ORBIT of Swamiji (Swami Vivekananda) and Maharaj (Swami Brahmananda) could feel a special spiritual atmosphere. Whosoever entered into that orbit could feel at once a power permeating him. Swamiji loved us, his brother disciples, intensely. It was like a mother’s love for her child, and so he could not brook faults or defects in any of us. He wanted his brothers to be as great as he himself was – no, even greater than he. There is no love equal to his love for us. But he had a very special love for Maharaj, and respect for him. There is a saying: “The guru’s son is to be respected as the guru himself.” That was Swamiji’s attitude toward Maharaj.
I lived in the shade of Maharaj’s protection and so I did not receive much of Swamiji’s scolding. Maharaj and Swami Premananda chose to bear most of the burden of it. One time I did not get the meaning of something Swamiji said and contradicted him: “No, holy sir, you have not understood the ancient sages and seers.” I saw Swamiji’s face turning red. Maharaj was walking back and forth near us. Swamiji told him: “Raja, look here. This fellow says I don’t understand anything.” Maharaj replied: “Brother, you should not take seriously what he says. He is just a young boy. What does he know?” Swamiji immediately calmed down. He accepted Maharaj’s words as if he himself were a child. And Swamiji and I were reconciled.
Because Swamiji loved Maharaj with such intensity, he once scolded him so vehemently that Maharaj went to his room and wept copiously. I must mention that the fault was mine. In order to shield me Maharaj took the blame upon himself. When Swamiji learned that Maharaj was weeping, he became so upset that he rushed into Maharaj’s room and after embracing him began to weep too, and said: “Raja, Raja, please, brother, forgive me. How wrong I was to have scolded you!” Seeing Swamiji weep like this, Maharaj was struck with wonder and said: “Well, you have scolded me. What of it? You scolded me because you love me.” Swamiji again embraced Maharaj and repeated over and over again: “Brother, please forgive me. Our master loved you so much. He never spoke a harsh word to you. And over a trifling matter I scolded you.” He spoke in this way for a long time, and then they both became calm. I will never forget that experience. I have seen with my own eyes what powerful attraction these two great souls Maharaj and Swamiji had for spiritual aspirants. People could not help but be drawn to them.
taken from ‘The Eternal Companion’ by Swami Prabhavananda