In South India, in Tamil Nadu, there was a certain Adigal or Dasa (servant of God), in a village named Thangalur. He heard of the spiritual grandeur of Saint Appar and developed great admiration for him. He built rest houses in his name; named his children after him so that they might grow up in the halo of his glory. He donated lands and houses all in the name of the Saint he had not seen.
One day by chance Appar himself walked into Thangalur, for he had missed his way and had to deviate. He noticed everywhere in the town Appar Rest-houses and Appar Charities and wondered how his name had preceded him. Then Adigal ran forward to his guru and took him home and prepared a grand feast for him. When his eldest son went to his garden to cut a few plantain leaves for the dinner, a snake bit him and he died on the spot. Adigal, however, was not affected in the least; he covered up the corpse, heaping dry leaves upon it, and proceeded with the formalities of hospitality for the long-sought Guru. The Guru, however, insisted on all the children of Adigal sitting around him during the meal, and he ordered the father, “Go call everyone here.” Adigal did as he was commanded. He called and the dead son rose. He too came and sat for dinner with the rest. When he knew what had happened, Appar said, “Your faith is greater than my Shakti.”
It is faith that matters; the form and the name on which it is fixed do not matter. For all names are His; all forms are His. Where there is Faith, there is Love. Where there is Love, there is Peace. Where there is Peace, there is Truth. Where there is Truth, there is God. Where there is God, there is Bliss. It starts with Faith and ends in Bliss. If you have no steadfastness and depth of faith, you can have no grace.