Here, the part of letter written by THOLUVURE VELAYUTHAM MUDALIAR (Head disciple of Vallalar) to the Theosopical Society in July 1882 describing Vallalar.
In 1849, I became his disciple and though no one knew where he had been initiated. Some years after he gathered a number of disciples around him. He was a great' Alchemist. He had a strange faculty about him, witnessed very often, of changing carnivorous person into a vegetarian, a mere glance from him seemed enough to destroy the desire for animal food. He had also the wonderful faculty of reading other men's minds.
In the year 1855, he left Madras for Chidambaram and thence to Vadalur and Karungooli where he remained a number of years. Many a time during his stay there, he used to leave his followers, disappearing and no one knew whither, and remaining absent for more or less prolonged period of time.
In personal appearance Ramalingam was a moderately tall spare man - so spare, indeed as to virtually appear a skeleton - yet withal a strong man, erect in stature and walking very rapidly with it face of a clever brown complexion, a straight thin nose very large fiery eyes and with a look of constant sorrow on his face.
Towards the end, he let his hair grow long, and what is rather unusual with Yogis, he wore shoes. His Garments consisted but of two pieces of white cloth. His habits were excessively abstemious. He was known to hardly ever take any rest. A strict vegetarian, he ate but once in two or three days and was then satisfied with a few mouthfuls of rice. But when fasting for a period of two or three months, he literally ate nothing living merely on warm water with a little sugar dissolved in it.
When he attained his 50th year (1873) he began to prepare his disciples for his departure from the world. He announced his intention of going into Samadhi. During the first half of 1873, he preached most forcibly his views upon Human Brotherhood.
But during the last quarter of the year, he gave up lecturing entirely and maintained an almost unbroken silence. He resumed speech in the last days of January 1874, and reiterated his prophecies herein after narrated.
On the 30th of that month at Mettukuppam, 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.