Tuesday, September 19, 2017

1090. Reservation and Dharma.....!

Life of every individual is different. Although there is no similarity our ancients never approved inferior and superior status. For the society to thrive, they knew very well every individuals contribution was must. The service of a teacher, physician, sewer, potter, farmer, barber, weaver, butcher, solider, sweeper and priest were needed for anyone to live a comfortable life in the society. There was no question of predominant or subordinate in the society, everyone irrespective of their contribution to the society was equal.
The way of thinking of the inhabitants was also so, they had understood the verse of Bhagavad Gita Chapter 5 verse 18 where Sri Krishna tells Arjuna:

Vidya vinaya sampanne brahmane, gavi, hastini,
suni caiva svapake ca panditah samadarsinah

Meaning: A wise man sees a learned and humble Brahmin, a cow, an elephant, a dog, a dog eater and all other living beings as equal.

We cannot say when we lost this Samadarshana (looking all as same). As we lost the mindset of looking all as same, we started to rectify it with Samatva (Equality). Now the real issue started instead of getting back the triat of treating everyone as the same we started to create a similar status to all. So the acceptance of the first sentence in this write up “Life of every individual is different” now changes to “Life of every individual has to be same.” In the rukus to create equality in society, Dharma (Justice) was snubbed. The Aarakshana (Reservation) stepped in creating even more discrimination and discontent.

There was nothing wrong in reservation as it was introduced to uplift those who were not looked at as same. But the fallout of this reservation was that Gaunya (Merit) was overlooked.  Reservation is for those who don’t have anything, who don’t have the most basic means of sustenance; it’s not for those who drive around in cars or travel first class, or even those who raise slogans to divide the very country which funds their free education. No community or a person should be branded backward. Politicians have used this divide to their favour to come to power.

The Mahabharata war could have been ended in 3 minutes because of Bheema’s grandson, Barbarika who was a brave warrior. He was blessed by Maharudradeva and bestowed with three powerful arrows. The power of the three arrows was such that, with one arrow he could mark all those whom he would wanted to destroy, the second one would mark all whom he wished to save. And with the third arrow he could destroy everyone marked by the first arrow.

When Sri Krishna came to know about the three arrows he asked Barbarika which side he would support, Pandavas or Kauravas. Amazingly Ahilawathi, the mother of Barbarika had advised him to side with the smaller army, so considering that the Pandava’s had a smaller army he said he would side with them. Sri Krishna knew that during the course of the battle whichever side Barbarika was would become huge and hence he would have to jump to the other side, this was a huge paradox. There was no Dharma in supporting the smaller or weaker side, thus Sri Krishna asked him his head so that his involvement in the war would be avoided. Before giving his head to Sri Krishna, Barbarika expressed his desire to view the war, leading to Sri Krishna placing Barbarika’s head on the top of a mountain overlooking the battlefield.

This story tells us that appeasing of any community or a section of people without following Dharma is not good.

Friday, September 15, 2017

1089. Jai Hind....!

The definition of patriotism is given as devoted love, support, and defence of one’s country; national loyalty.

Is it constitutional to say “Jai Hind” asked one of the panelists  yesterday on a debate on television. The debate was on the Madhya Pradesh school children answering the role call by "Jai Hind" instead of present Ma'am, yes Sir.

Many of us do not know that Jai Hind was coined by Zain-ul Abideen Hasan, son of a collector from Hyderabad. When Netaji wanted to introduce an Indian form of greeting for his army, and for independent India. Various suggestions came. Hasan suggested 'Jai Hind'. Netaji liked it and it became the official form of greeting in Indian National Army (INA) which was later adopted as the official slogan of the country,

A nation stands by its armed forces not only during war times, but during any given time. They celebrate the victory together. Together they dream of taking their nation to new heights, the solider in the boarder and others within. Together they hail the country.  What is wrong when we feel same for our country India? What’s wrong if we hail by saying “JAI HIND”.

There is so much negative thoughts about my country in the minds of a few who consider themselves Intellectuals and quite often they just don’t want to discuss or talk about it. I remember there is a dialogue in the movie Rang De Basanti, “koibhi desh perfect nahi hota hai, usse perfect banana padta hai” (No nation is perfect, it has to be made perfect).  Now who should take the responsibility to make it perfect??? What is wrong if the administration of my country take the initiative??? Should we expect someone else to take the responsibility???
They say if we are not the part of a solution, then we are the problem. 

Our country has made advancements in almost all sectors but there is still greater distance to cover in terms of displaying patriotism. Yes, agreed that a nation does not become great with slogans, instead when its citizens do great things. The great things we do should start with hailing the country.  There is a need to change our attitude towards showing love towards our country which drives our nation forward. That way we will be a part of the system and bring positive changes.

Politics is not a dirty game, but there are dirty players. If we say that we don’t promote wrong things and we are neutral then that is paradox. If we don’t oppose traitors and anti-nationals then we are certainly encouraging them. 

The vision of Independent India became a reality when our freedom fighters came together and fought the imperialists, which was initially considered impossible. The situation is same, they drove out the outsiders then now we need to clean up the insiders who oppose patriotism. Every country has this problems but only a few do not throw up the solution. As a responsible citizen, we need to provide the solutions.

One has to remember that the country is our mother and we have to be responsible enough to say that I am going respect her by shouting on the roof top…..”JAI HIND”

If you agree with me just type JAI HIND.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

1088. Dynasty no longer runs my country......!

There is nothing like dynastic rule in democratic India. In ancient times the Rashtra or the State was administrated by an eminent personality from a restricted class of Kshatriya (Royals) clan. He was often referred to as “Gopa” (Protector of Cows) and “Samrat” (Supreme Ruler). He governed the people with their consent and approval. Samrat’s main duty was to protect the people and their cattle. The main intention of the Samrat along with protecting his people was to uphold Dharma, the righteousness. He had Sabha (House of People) and Samiti (Committee) which assist him in governance. He was aided by two functionaries, the Raja Purohita, a learned person who was masters in four arts of Mantras (all rituals), Economics, Politics and Warfare and a Senani, the Army Chief.

The legacy would continue for the generations and that was called Dynasty. The society at that time had four class of work force. The first was the teaching/artist class, the second was the warrior/fighter class, and then we had business/trading class and finally the working/service class. Now, if we carefully observe this category was based on the nature of the individual.      

An individual who had Sattva Guna alone in predominance was categorised as Brahamana (Teacher/Scholar/Artist).

An individual who had Sattva and Rajas with Rajas in prominence was a Kshatriya (Warrior/Ruler/Administrator).

An individual who had Rajas and Tamas with Tamas in prominence was a Vaisya (Businessmen/Merchant/Tradesmen).

An individual who had Tamo Guna alone in predominance was categorised as Sudra (Worker/Craftsmen/Servicemen).

All the four category of work force did not depend on the dynastic hierarchy, except for the Kshatriya and Vaishya clan which required the hereditary factor. While for the Kshatriya clan the requisite depended on the ancestral gene of strength and vigour, and for the Vaishya the tactics and strategy of trading was in the gene. The twisting strands of DNA would tell the tale of every individual in both these classes. Moreover these two classes had inheritance which was a major factor, a Prince would inherit the Kingdom from the King and the business tycoons’ son would inherit the business empire. The other two classes did not require the gene for their endeavour. The teacher/scholar/artist class and the worker/craftsmen/servicemen never depended on the parents’ genealogy, neither was the property of ancestry of any use to their ventures.        

So, it became important of the Kshatriya to be born in a Royal family and the Vaishya to be born in the family doing business. The Brahmana and Shudra could be anyone; in fact we have a story of how King Kowshika who was born in the royal family became Vishwamitra (Friend of the Universe) by subduing his Rajo Guna and elevating his Sattva Guna. Our puranas too mention many instances where the successful vaishyas yielding to gratify their senses fuel the Tamo Guna.  

Now in recent times we are not ruled by anyone we have a people’s representative who looks after the administration. There is no necessity that one has to be born in certain family to get elected to represent us. In democracy anybody can elect anyone depending on his caliber to deliver and dynasty exists only in business class in this present era. It is idiocy to think our country runs on the Dynastic Rule. If we agree to that most of the country runs on the dynasty, then the meaning of Democracy is lost......What say???  

Saturday, September 9, 2017

1087. The Pure Intake......!

The seventh chapter of Chandogya Upanishad is titled “Bhuma Vidya” (Art of Living on Earth) is a conversation between Sage Narada and Sanatkumara. In this section Sanatkumara reveals the knowledge of Self-supported, Self-sufficient, Self-complete phenomena called Brahman. In the section 26 explaining the Primacy of Self Sanathkumara says,  

“Aharasuddhau Sattvashuddhi, Sattvasuddhau Dhruva Smritihi, Smritilambhe Sarva Granthi Vipramokshah”

Meaning:  “By purity of food, the inner nature is pure. Memory is sharp for those who have pure inner nature. When memory is sharp one can think of the path to Liberation.”

When I looked into the commentary of this particular verse by Sri Sri Sankara, I was amazed to know about the explanation given. I wish to share my understanding here. One can derive different meaning from one Sanskrit word, this word “Ahara” too is such. If we stop at thinking that this word “Ahara” is referring to Food alone, we will never understand that verse from Chandogya Upanishad. If we split this Sanskrit word into two it is Ahah and Hara. Ahah is interjection (Outburst) and Hara is to “remove”.

In this sense the Gudartha (Mystical Meaning) of Ahah Hara is to “remove the outburst”. There is an outburst for anything and everything that our five senses come into contact with that which is in the outside world. Anything taken into our body through the five senses is food. It is not that the meal which passes through our mouth alone is food, Sight is food for eyes, Sound is food for ears, Smell is food for nose and Feel is food for Skin. To make it simple, if there is outburst of hunger it is removed by the meal we consume. This applies to sound, smell, sight and feel too.  

Now having understood the mystical meaning of Ahara it is time to concentrate on the verse which says one can know the path of liberation if the food (object of senses) is pure. In Sanskrit impurities are called Dosha and the food which we are considering here could have Tridosha (Three Impurities). That which removes the outburst of hunger is meal, it could be having  three impurities.   

Jati Dosha (Natural Impurity), it could be the defect due to the substandard ingredients used in the recipe. Nimitta Dosha (Occasional Impurity), it could be from the presence of external contamination fallen in the dish, such as dust, dead insects, etc. Ashraya Dosha (Depended Impurity), it could be from the food coming from immoral sources. (Note: immoral source is pertaining to stolen food or other person’s morsel)

Likewise there could be impurities in the sound, smell, sight and feel that we experience. Hence the
Upanishad warns us to be aware of the impurities and guides us to
make sure that whatever we take into our body through our senses have to be pure. In fact in reality whatever we eat is to little compare to what we consume through our eyes, ears, nose and skin. Our scriptures give more emphasis on food for eye and ear, what we see and hear in day-to-day life. It gives emphasis on whether we live in a polluted environment so that our skin and nose is taking all bad food for it.

We talk of hygiene only with respect to what we eat and seldom check on what we see, hear smell and feel. Let’s fill our body with only purity..... What say??? 

Friday, September 8, 2017

1086. Importance of Breath.....!

Birth and Death are the two terminals between which life travels on this earth plane. One short period of life on this earth is called “Jivana Kaala” (Life Span). The Jeevi (Mind & Intellect) who is the voyager here starts the journey on this earth from the day of birth and ends it at death on a vehicle called Deha (Body). The Jeevi and Deha are connected by Prana (Vital Breath). Life Span is the period measured as long as Prana maintains the connection between the body and the mind. Further the body has Five Sense organs namely Eyes, Ears, Nose, Skin and Tongue with which the Jeevi is able to See, Hear, Smell, Feel and Taste. Along with these five senses there is another organ which is the Mind without which these five are of no use.

Although we say all the five sense organs are important and Mind is ultimate, there is one which is superior to all the six. To illustrate this we have a small anecdote in Chandogya Upanishad, Chapter 5, Verse 1. This is just to make us understand nothing to be serious about the senses and mind fighting among themselves.  

Once the five sense organs and the mind quarreled among themselves claiming superiority. Unable to decide they went to Prajapathi, He asked each of the sense organs to take a year off. If the Jeevi cannot survive without the particular sense organ, the matter is settled. One after the other each sense organ left the Jeeva for a year; let’s observe what happened.

First was the organ of speech to depart. After being away for a whole year, it came back and asked “Have you been able to live without me?”

All the other organs replied, “Yes we could manage as a person who is dumb, without speaking. We could see, breath, hear feel and also think. The organ of speech re-entered the body again.
Next was it was the eyes which departed. After being away for a whole year, it came back and asked, “How was life without me?”

The other organs replied, “We lived just like a blind person, without seeing, but breathing, talking, hearing and thinking went on as normal. The eyes re-entered the body.
Ear walked out of the body. After a year it came back and asked, “Was there any difficulty without me in the body?”

All the other organs replied, “Not at all we could not hear otherwise breathing, speaking seeing and thinking were are up to standard.” Ear came back again into the body.

Now it was the time for the Mind to go out of the body for a year. After being away for a whole year, it came back and said, “I know without me you must have missed a lot?”

All the other organs told, “No, we lived like a child. We really enjoyed the innocence and those playful gestures we cannot forget. We could breath normal, hear, see, and talk as usual.” Mind too returned back to the body.

Finally it was time for Prana (Vital Breath) to leave the body. Just as it left the body it uprooted the other organs too. Just as the racing horse heaves off the pegs to which it is tied, the other organs too started to follow the Prana. The other organs could not stay in the body for a single second without Prana. They could not see, hear, feel and talk without breath.

Automatically Prana had the privilege of being superior to all the organs (both Karmendriyas and Jnanendriyas) as well as Manas (Mind). Prana is Mukhya (Essential) hence referred as Mukhya Prana, Hanuman. When Prana (Vital Breath) is Hanuman the Chetana (Consciousness) is Sri Hari. Consciousness leaves the body and become lifeless if breath goes out of the body. 

Thursday, September 7, 2017

1085. Decision Making......tough or easy???

The most difficult and also the easiest is the decision making. It is a process that helps to map out the consequences of the action. It allows reaching out for the course of action that will help achieve the objective. In other words, it is in the moments of decision that the future is decided. It is a choice that may be favourable or adverse to the individual which is known only after the results of that decision unfurl.

When the Kauravas hitched a plan to eliminate Pandavas by designing the Laksya Griha (House of Lax) it was the decision of Vidura to have a tunnel dug that saved Pandavas and Kutidevi. This was timely decision.

Of the two wives of Sage Kashyapa, Kadru came to know that the thousand eggs of Vinata had hatched, she took a hasty decision of breaking open one of her two eggs. Aruna emerged with only half of his body formed. Hasty decisions make waste.  

Bhishma decides to remain unmarried and will not change his decision even when Satyavathi wants him to reconsider. Amazingly it was the decision taken because Satyavathi wanted her child to be the next king of Kuruvamsha. There came a time when she wanted Bhishma to get married and produce a son to extend the clan. That was a firm decision from Bhishma.       

Queen Kaikeyi saved her husband King Dasharatha who was fighting with Samhasura by holding the chariot wheel from slipping out of the shaft. Dasharatha took an emotional decision of granting her three boons which Kaikeyi used it to send Shri Rama to forest and wanted Bharata to be coronated. Emotional decisions could bring agony.  

Not to disturb the sleeping Guru Parashurama, Karna made an absurd decision when the beetle bit him. Feeling the wet blood Parashurama could make out that a Brahmin could not have tolerated the pain, Karna was a Kshatriya. Absurd decisions push us into murky situations.

At the verge of the Great War, Arjuna made a silly decision. He put down his weapons and said he will not kill his relatives for mere throne of Hastinapura. This decision of his was unacceptable as a Kshatriya, his Kshatra Dharma says; he has to fight the unjust. Sri Krishna then had to give him a sermon amidst the war field.

After lecturing Sri Krishna tells Arjuna that He had only talked about the realities of life and it was purely his decision to participate in the war. Sri Krishna did not order Arjuna to take a decision to fight instead He let him decide.

At the start of this write up I had told it is very difficult and easiest to make decisions. There are times when we need to make big decisions and at those times if we make a small decision to let Him decide then the decision made will be favourable. If not,; it is yet the best because deep inside we do have a feeling that it was His decision and there could be a bigger meaning to it.

Now the question is how do we let Him decide???

There is confusion while making a decision and it is better to go by the intuition rather than instinct. Intuitive decision making comes from Sub-Conscious Intelligence it is the mysterious “knowing without knowing”. It is also free from deliberation. It is simply aimed at the purpose of the deed than the fruit of the deed.   

Sri Krishna telling Arjuna to fight, if he wins the battle he will have the throne, if not he will embrace valiant heaven is a perfect example......who else can give such suggestions to decide other than my Sri Hari.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

1084. Biological, Artificial, Emotional and Spiritual Intelligence.

Once a scientist collected a few drops of tears when his wife cried out of joy and clinically compared it with the one that came out when her father passed away. He found no difference at all in the chemical combination. For him it was just a fluid which was produced by the lacrimal glands in both the occasions. The most important point that scientist had missed was the feelings that had made the tears ooze out at the different incident. The flow of tears is due to the Biological Intelligence (also called Natural Intelligence) which happens quite and without making itself felt. Biological intelligence is the basic stuff that keeps going guiding our body to do what is needed to be done. It is paired with the Emotional Intelligence which is the ability of an individual to experience the emotions in them as well as in others.
This pair connects the all conscious and unconscious abilities in the body to link them from genetics to psychology. Having said that, many of the abilities are still unknown to us like the feel good factor created in the hug from mother, the warmth in the touch of the lover or a simple long blink with a nod to the one entering the operation theatre.
Using this pair we can nurture yet two more intelligence. The first is Artificial Intelligence which is to use technology to make machines do things that require intelligence when done by humans. This is a great revolution which conceptualizes the systems that will have robots and humanoids performing the task for humans without getting fatigued. It would be hypocritical to belittle the Artificial Intelligence when I am using this technology to convey my thought to you through a computer. It is overwhelming to find that we humans have used this Artificial Intelligence to serve us, but with the use of Intellect we can let them stay as our good servants rather than letting them be our master. With Artificial Intelligence we have agricultural robot working in corporate farms, the agricultural produce is grown in Sahasra (Excess) but what is the use if there is less of Sara (Essence). Here we need to use our Intellect.
Intellect is Buddhi Shakti and Intelligence is Medha Shakthi, we need not get confused. When the biological intelligence and emotional intelligence work together to create artificial intelligence then it is for the welfare of the individual as well as the society. Here predominantly the Medha Shakti is in use. When the pair uses the Buddhi Shakti the higher dimension of intelligence is activated resulting in the sense of deeper meaning and purpose of the existence. This is called Spiritual Intelligence.  
This Spiritual Intelligence checks and guides the creation process of the Artificial Intelligence and avoids it from becoming a Natural Stupidity. It is that unique qualities which can make the scientist who compared the tears of his wife understand the difference. Spiritual Intelligence is uniquely distinct from religion and dogmas. Spirit which is viewed as the principle of a conscious life inspires us to use the gained knowledge toward behaving with wisdom and compassion while maintaining equanimity, regardless of the situation.

It is better to know about the Biological Intelligence, Emotional Intelligence before creating Artificial Intelligence. This is only possible if we are inclined towards the ever shining Spiritual Intelligence.  

Friday, September 1, 2017

1083. I have no Grievances....!

Kurai Ondrum Illai Marai Moorthy Kanna….
I have no Grievances, O Kanna, the invisible Lord. 

These are the starting lines from a Tamil Devotional song composed by freedom fighter & last Governor-General of India Sri. Chakravarthi Rajagopalachari. In this composition he is expressing his gratitude towards Kanna (Krishna) by saying he has no grievance whatsoever. How true, we can feel so only if we firmly believe that He is with us always. The belief that He will look after our Yogakshema (welfare).

When I was in college my father handed me a book by this great writer. It was Mahabharata, the book which introduced me the epic in a very special way. From then on my interest in reading did not stop. In this regard I am indebted to Rajaji (C.R is fondly called Rajaji).

Last week the water purifier at our house was not delivering the water. The service engineer was called in to look at the issue. He removed the unit and replaced the filter candle. The old candle was filled with sedimentary slurry. Engineer explained that the filler in the unit had purified the water by not allowing the slurry to pass through it. The slurry thus sieved had clogged candle and hence had to be replaced. He also advices us to replaced the candle at regular intervals. If done so the water purifier would be in good condition. Great work we thought.

There is a Dialysis centre near our factory. We often see patients who come regularly to get the Dialysis done. Kidney is the Gods arrangement in our body just like the filter candle in the water purifier. But it is His creation which is designed to last the entire life span if maintained properly. This internal organ filters the waste and fluid from the blood and its working is important to have a balanced health. 

If a unit which filters water need a regular change of the candle just imagine if we would have needed to replace kidney, what would be our state. 

Now with everything I need is looked after by Him, I need to tell Him “Kurai Ondrum Illai Marai Moorthy Kanna….”

I have no Grievances, O Kanna, the invisible Lord.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

1082. Intuitive Knowledge.......!

We often hear this sentence when two are in argument or discussion “I am correct you were wrong.” This correct and wrong are obviously referred to the final statement of the subject matter of discussion. It would be erroneous if we presume that the two words “Correct” and “Wrong” are indicating Viparyaya (Opposite) in this context. If we analyse with a mature sense keeping the discussion in view, we can know that those words are pointing out the Bhinna (Different). Now this seems to be confusing, how can a decisive statement in an argument which is supposed to be one be “different”???

It is Anubhuti (Perception) that makes it different. Every individual has his own perception that may not be in Samanvaya (Similarity) with others. Amazingly it is this Anubhuti which bring in Anubhava (Experience) to us. As we gain more experience we should be able to analyse every discussion or argument from the Bhinna (Different) point of view instead of Viparyaya (Opposite). This is the quality of Samibhuta (Equipoise). This equipoise state of mind provides us the ability to think from different Pramana (Dimension). When we start thinking from different dimensions we develop Karunya Bhava (Empathy).   

Being empathic as we all know is an ability to understand or relate to another person as if we were in their shoes. This can happen either mentally and emotionally. When we take this empathic ability up a notch we can feel the emotional states of another person or experience what they are feeling first hand as if they were our own emotions. In other words, we can have Pratibha Medhas (Intuitive Knowledge).

Intuitive Knowledge is independent of our sensory experience and hence cannot be proven through senses. Expression of Love is one of them, you know how much you love someone but cannot divulge it in words. The origin of this intuitive knowledge is the point of origin of our Svarupa (Nature) with which the entire cosmos was created. It is the ideal state we seek to attain in the successful embodiment and integration of all of our senses within our rational and non-rational self. It is the final destination we seek to return to.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

1081. Advice.....!

He is a government official staying in a tenement with his aged mother, wife and his college going daughter. Thiers is a happy family. Across the road in an apartment stays a family of a corporate employee living with aged mother, his wife and their college going daughter. The aged mother is not in high spirits, reason her son doesn’t care for her. The government official was from his young age; let’s say habitually a family man taking care of the family. The corporate employee even before his marriage was not so inclined towards family welfare. His mother thought marriage would induce responsibility and he might transform himself, but it never happened. He was habitually a sloppy man.              

A few lanes away from this apartment stand an old age home run by a very successful businessman. The geriatric shelter home has more than 50 elderly people and provides them all facilities to keep them comfortable in their last lap of life. The businessman had come to the city some 10 years back and made good profits in business, with a conviction to give back to the society he had started the old age home. A good gesture indeed, but his aged parents back in his village longed to spend the rest of their life with their only son.         

Habits are vital in helping us do everything in a habitual process. Habit has two faces one being the Vasanas (Impressions) and the other Samskara (Tendencies). The impressions are the groove that is created in the plane of consciousness with the needle of past repetitive thought. They tempt us to repeat a particular event over and over again.  

Our mind gets the pattern in the memory and makes the thought and behavior habitual so that the conscious mind can deal with it without much complication. These become tendencies which are behavioral attitudes of action or non-action which in fact label our habit. This is an amazing virtue of mind, but the drawback is that tendencies can also have a negative hold on the same mind and make them hard to break. Hence some say habits are hard to die.

Here we can notice three different approach in terms of looking after the aged parents. The first and second are habitual, one takes good care of his mother and the other does not. The tendencies in both are hard to change (though there is no need for the first guy to change as he is doing in a better cause). Now coming to the businessman, his thoughts are good but it needs to be channelized to a proper goal, here the word of advice gets its importance. He has to be reminded about Svadharma which Sri Krishna told Arjuna in Bhagavad Gita. It is good to take care of those devoid of filial affection, but it has to start from our threshold.      

Krishna did not advice Duryodhana the moment He understood the past impression were influencing him. He had told Krishna, “I know what Dharma is but don’t follow, I know what Adharma is but don’t quit.” In case of Arjuna the scenario was different he needed Sri Krishna to guide him towards the right goal.

Advice can route the good cause towards the right goal. 

Do you agree friends???

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

1080. Negation and Transcending....!

A psychology professor came up with a unique question for his students at the time of final exams. The students were ready to leave the class and the professor requested for their attention and picked up his chair, dumped it on top of the desk and wrote on the board:
“Using all the knowledge you have gained from the semester, prove that this chair does not exist. You have ten minutes.”

All of a sudden there was silence in the class. Some studious students pulled out their project books and started writing. Some reached out to their texts and guides to look into them for anything substantial. Some started to have discussions among others. But there was this fellow sitting in the last bench who took out a sheet of paper and scribbled something and folded it into half wrote his name and handed over it to the professor. Not only the professor but the entire class was astonished by the young man’s act.

When the whole class insisted to know what the young man had written, the psychology professor revealed his answer sheet which had just “WHAT CHAIR?” written in the middle of the sheet.

There was a concert at an old temple and elderly people had gathered in the hall. Everyone had sat down and one middle aged person was sitting near a pillar. A young man requested him to relocate himself so that his grandpa could rest his back to the pillar and sit. The middle aged man was adamant to shift place, staring at the young man he said, “Do you know whom you are talking to; I am a Tarka Praveena (Proficient of Logic) I can argue that this pillar does not exist at all.”  

The young boy looked at the pillar and then at the Tarkashastradnya (Professor of Logic) and said, “Revered sir, could you please head butt this pillar hard before you prove with all your knowledge that this pillar does not exist?”     

Vedanta talks about Nakara (Negation) and also about Ativarthata (Transcending). Negation is easy compared to Transcending. In negation one stays where he is but puts the object in question away from him while in transcending the individual surpasses it. 

In the two analogies above the student had transcended and looked beyond the chair and hence he did not find it and also there was no ego to fan him. In the case of the Tarka expert he just wanted to show off his knowledge by using words to negate the pillar, which he had already mentioned to the young man while boasting about his credentials with his ego was inflated.

In negation there is still an iota of Ajnana (Ignorance), likewise if a seeker can realize that sorrow is just the result of ignorance then he will be asking “WHAT SORROW?” And further realization of the truth makes him realize the illusionary and dream-like nature of the world, and then he will be in a position to ask “WHAT WORLD?” “WHAT PAIN?” “WHAT LOSS?” “WHAT GAIN?”

Delight or grief does not exist in reality since they do not appear on their own; they are temporary flip flop emotions that sprout in our mind as the stream of thoughts flow if we are sceptical. This is the reason Sri Krishna tells Arjuna that with no desires in the mind, if the lower self is satisfied with the higher Self then the seeker is steadfast and rock solid in making decisions. This is not mere negation but definite transcending.....What say???    

1079. Durva Grass...!

We have all noticed that when a dog experiences indigestion, it eats grass and throws up to gets its stomach clear. It is an instinctive action which none has taught it. The metabolism in the dog drives it to search for the grass. And most importantly it is no ordinary grass the dog looks out for Durva grass which is commonly known as Bermuda grass.

The botanical name of this grass is Cynodon Dactylon. In the West it is considered as a weed and there are so many means to eradicate it. We here in India have given it a special place. It is one of the most important components of ritualistic worship of Ganesha, the God of Wisdom.

To make us understand the importance of this grass our puranas have given us a story too.

It was the time when a Asura (Demon) was in his atrocious high. He had a unique talent of spitting fire and burning down everything and everyone around him. For his ghastly act he was called “Analasura”. Anala in Sanskrit is fire. This Asura created havoc and terrified the inhabitants of all the three worlds. Unable to withstand the outrage the Suras (Divine Beings) went to Ganesha requesting him to save them from the Asura.

Ganesha took the Cosmic form and swallowed the Asura in one gulp. Analsura started to emit fire within the stomach. As Ganesha had assumed the Cosmic form the heat inside the stomach reflected on the universe and the whole terrene started to feel the heat.

Now it was the tremendous task for Devas to cool the fire in the stomach.

First it was the turn of the Moon to cool him down. The attempt went futile. Lotus which Maha Vishnu was holding and the Snake around the neck of Maharudradeva too failed to bring chill in the stomach of Ganesha. Then the Saptarishis (Seven Sages) brought Durva grass from Bhuloka (Earth) and placed it on the stomach of Ganesha. Immediately the whole of the cosmos could feel the cool. Durva grass according to ancient Rishis is the strand of hair of Virat Purusha. There is Durva Sukta in Krishna Yajurveda.

Ayurveda and Siddha school of medicine has recognized the medicinal values of this Durva grass and are using it in preparing their medicine.

Charaka, the father of Ayurveda refers to Durva grass as the complexion promoter and is titled it as “Sahasra virya” denoting its thousand fold strength and versatility in use, such as complexion enhancer, astringent, moisturizer, demulcent and cooling for the skin.

The coolness in the Durva grass is good for eyes and is therefore regarded as a good ophthalmic drug.

Today, Bhadrapada Shukla Astami is Durva Astami.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

1078. Parvathi created Ganesha...!

“She scrubbed her skin with Sandalwood paste, scrapped off the dead cells mixed it with turmeric and moulded a beautiful boy into which she installed life.” This is how our Puranas describe the birth of Ganesha. 

Let us begin with the story before this event. Gajasura was an ardent devotee of Maharudradeva. He did penance and asked Maharudradeva to dwell in his stomach. Maharudradeva took the form of a Linga and the Asura swallowed it. The Layakaraka (i could not find a English word for Laya) was absent so dissolution was stalled. When all the Devas started praying to Maharudradeva, he burst out of the stomach of Gajasura. The Asura understood his grave mistake of gulping one of the Trinity and hampering the creation. Gajasura begged for forgiveness and requested thus, “Now that you have burst out of my body only my head is intact, everyone should remember my head and you should wrap your body with my skin.”

Meanwhile Parvathidevi in Kailasa was preparing herself for a bath. She didn’t want anyone to disturb her and moulded a young boy and did Prana Pratista (installation of life force). She asked him to stand guard at the door. Maharudradeva came to Kailasa after a long stay in the belly of Gajasura. He was confronted by the young lad at the door. Not allowed inside Maharudradeva angrily threw his trident at the boy which severed his head.

Now why did Maharudradeva who is known for being clam by practicing meditation get agitated??? 

Here Bhagavan Vyasa reminds us of the story of Maali and Sumaali the two demons brothers who fought with Suryadeva. Being the devotees of Maharudradeva the brothers pleaded him to intervene. Maharudradeva struck Suryadeva with the trident and this made the entire world plunge into darkness. Kashyapa the father of Suryadeva cursed Maharudradeva, “Just as you pierced my son’s chest with a trident, you will one day pierce the head of your son with that trident.”

2 + 2 is 4 and the curse unfurls and the young boy to whom Maharudradeva was father was killed. Parvathidevi insisted her husband to bring the little boy back to life and now the elephant head of Gajasura was used for transplantation. We all know the rest of the story.

The outermost layer of our skin is composed of dead stratified squamous, keratinized epithelial cells. Science today says that cloning is possible with epithelial cells. Never know if Parvathidevi used her epithelial cells to clone Ganesha. In fact as per our scientific knowledge clones are the identical copies of donor of cells, if so clone developed from the cell of a male will be a male and if develop from a female cell it will be a female. Parvathidevi created Ganesha who is of  opposite sex by using the genetic engineering to alter the genes in a cell, which the science may come up with this technology in future.  

Whatever may be the science behind the creation of Ganesha, I wish to contemplate it from the spiritual angle. The dead cells from the body of Parvathidevi were mala (Dirt). We humans have Ego as dirt in our mind. Maharudradeva who is Consciousness beheads the ego with a little head and installs a bigger head which is awareness. Small head is narrow thinking, selfish thinking and being avaricious it has to be replaced by a head which has broad thinking, selfless thinking and being generous. This is more helpful to excel and move on further instead of being stuck with the arguments of those who have pride in identifying as devotees of Ganesha and those who call themselves atheists.  

May Gowri Maa bestow auspiciousness to the entire mankind.   

1077. Solar Eclipse....!

Eclipse is a spectacular astronomical event for the rest of the world, but for my country it has an astronomical significance too. Here it is called Parvakala (Auspicious Time), today the other part of the world with respect to India will witness Solar eclipse. While a few feel relieved that Surya Grahana will not be visible in India, some do miss the Parvakala. For them it is one of the celestial event which they are unable to be a part of.
Scientifically speaking the solar eclipse occur on Amavasya (New Moon day). Sun and Moon are in conjunction as seen from the Earth. In a solar eclipse Moon is the eclipsing body, passing in between Earth and Sun casting a shadow across earth's surface so that the Sun is obscured.
There are three types of solar eclipses.
Khagrasa Surya Grahana (Total solar eclipse) happens when Sun is completely in line with the Moon who is covering the Sun totally.
Khandagrasta Surya Grahana (Partial solar eclipse) when the Sun and Moon are not in line but Moon is covering the Sun partially.
Valaya Surya Grahana (Annular solar eclipse) happens when the Sun and Moon are exactly in line, but size of the Moon smaller than that of the Sun. In this type we are able to witness the ring formation.
All the three types of solar eclipse is a spectacle to watch but with a little care.
If this event was visible here, the entire phase of eclipse would have been considered auspicious. Hence during this period many religious ritual like nama japa, punascharana, pithru tarpana, dana are considered to be very sacred.
Temples would be closed at the time of eclipse to be opened by chanting of Veda mantra. This ritual is to ward off the negative energy that gets activated during eclipse.
Om Bhaskaraya Vidhmahe
Diva karaya Dheemahe
Thanno Surya Prachodayath.
Om, Let me meditate on the Sun God,
Oh, maker of the day, give me higher intellect,
And let Sun God illuminate my mind.