1. THIS IS THE GREAT MEDITATION IN WHICH EVERY SOULHAS TO ENGAGE ITSELF.
2. IT IS INSIDE AND OUTSIDE ALL THINGS; BUT IT HAS ITSELF NO INSIDE AND OUTSIDE
3. THE BEGINNING OF CREATION IMPLIES THE PROJECTION OF SPACE AND TIME
4. ARE THERE REALLY MANY GODS
5. THE PRANA IS A SORT OF LINK BETWEEN THE PHYSICAL BODY AND THE INTERNAL ORGAN, THE PSYCHE
6. MAN IS FAR FROM THE EXPECTED PERFECTION TO BE REACHED IN NATURE'S SCHEME OF EVOLUTION
7. THE WORLD STOOD BEFORE THE SCIENTIST AS A GIGANTIC MIRACLE OF POWER AND RADIANCE
8. VERILY, THE ATMAN IS CONSCIOUSNESS ITSELF
9. POWERFUL LITERATURE CAN SHAKE THE WHOLE WORLD IN AN INSTANT
10. WHAT IS IT THAT MAKES ANYTHING LOOK BEAUTIFUL?
11. UNIVERSAL FREEDOM IS MOKSHA
12. TO WORK FOR THE SALVATION OF THE SOUL IS THE GREATEST OF ALL SERVICES
13. EXCESS IN THE FORM OF HOARDING IS CONSIDERED AS EQUIVALENT TO THEFT
14. PLATO CONSIDERS DEMOCRACY AS THE WORST FORM OF GOVERNMENT
15. FROM BRAHMA AROSE THE FIRST MANU, THE FATHER OF HUMANITY
16. THIS IS MODERN EDUCATION IN ITS PLAIN COLOUR
17. NOTHING IN NATURE IS DEAD OR BEREFT OF LIFE
18. THE VEDA-SAMHITA PROCLAIMS ITS FINAL WORD ON THE NATURE OF REALITY.
19. BY KNOWING IT REALITY, EVERYTHING IS KNOWN AT ONCE
20. WHAT DO THE EPICS TELL US?
21. PURANAS ARE DEVOTED TO A GLORIFICATION OF THE EXPLOITS OF THE GREAT DIVINITIE
22. RELIGION IS NOT MERELY DISCIPLINE BUT ALSO LOVE AND GRACE
23. THE ECSTASY OF THE GOPI-TYPE OF GOD-LOVE RISES INTO AN EXHILARATING PITCH OF A KIND OF GOD-MADNESS
24. THE WORSHIP OF SAIVA IS GRADED IN A FOURFOLD WAY
25. TANTRA IS SUPPOSED TO BE A CLOSED SECRET
26. THE INDIVIDUAL MIND IS ESSENTIALLY INSEPARABLE FROM THE COSMIC MIND
27. THE LIBERATED SAGE IS A MASTER AND A SUPERMAN
28. THOUGHTS CANNOT ARISE FROM A VACUUM
29. THE VEDA CANNOT BE EDITED OR IMPROVED UPON BY ANY ONE
30. WORLD-EXPERIENCE IS A PREPARATION FOR GOD-EXPERIENCE
31. IT IS NOT JUST ENOUGH IF WE WANT GOD; HIS WANTING US IS, INDEED, THE SUPREME ATTAINMENT
Sri C. Trivikrama Rao,
3-2-166/4, G.K. Colony,
Mob. No. 799 388 1049
God is all-powerful; we worship God as mother especially during Sri Durga-Navaratri days at the beginning of Asveeja month and celebrate Vijaya Dasami on the Tenth day in October every year. Brahman or Absolute or God has been defined as Sat-Chit-Ananda. Sat is pure existence, Chit is illumined Consciousness and power and Ananda is unending Bliss and Peace as explained by sages and saints. It is Eternal Reality without beginning and without end, formless, indivisible and imperishable. Pure Consciousness is Kundalini Sakthi as explained by Mata Karunamayee. Adi Sakthi is thus Cosmic energy which is verily the support and substratum of the universe of which the earth is a tiny part. The whole universe is moving in an orderly and most scientific way. The scientists all the world over after so much research have concluded that everything is pure imperishable energy which can be harnessed for the well-being of mankind.
We worship Sakthi or Devi as an attribute of God. We may say God and Sakthi are like fire and heat as an analogy. Devi is explained as Conscious Power of Deva. We worship it especially during Navaratri as conceived in its manifestations, viz., creation, preservation and destruction as Maha-Saraswathi, Maha-Lakshmi and Maha-Kaali or Maha-Durga. The normal practice is to worship 'Devi' in the order of Maha-Durga, Maha-Lakshmi and as Maha-Saraswathi three days each before Vijaya Dasami. This is the most auspicious period for Mother-Worship. In fact, they are not three distinct Devis but one formless Devi worshipped in different forms or aspects. The devotees read "Lalita Sahasranamas" especially during these days. One of the names is "Om Atnume Namah". It has also been explained as Thetana Prakruti' in the Holy Geeta which is the essense of Vedanta, viz., the science of life.
Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, the saint of Dakshineswar realised the 'Self' by loving Divine Mother as Maha Kaali. The paramahamsa emphasised that one can see or realise God through Prerna-Bhakti as the Mother loves the child, the child the mother. H.H. Sri Swami Sivananda said that there is a great magazine of power in us and one has to tap it through introspection, Japa and Meditation. Sakthi is thus the dynamic force. The word 'Om' is contained in the word 'Mother' when we read the first two letters right to the left side.
I may add that H.H. Sri Swami Krishnananda Saraswathi initiated me on a full-moon day, ie., on 24th September, 1980, by giving `Mantra Upadesa' on Adi Sakthi, Para Sakti and Maha Sakthi to do Japa Sadhana. Sri Swamiji gave us Spiritual Knowledge in the form of books, covering even the Philosophy of Western Thinkers apart from several Articles on the subject of Spirituality. It is gathered Sri Adi Sankaracharya worshipped Divine Mother as a boy. The conception of the 'Infinite' as Divine Mother was mentioned in the Rigveda as gathered. Guru is Divine Power. H.H. Sri Swami Krishnananda once said, there are two powers in us, viz., Daiva and Asura like Pandava and Kaurava forces. The Divine nature in us tells that we can overcome the whole universe. The other one tells "you are a weak-ling and cannot do anything". Our duty is to move forward and bring forth to the surface of our awareness the power within us. Devotion to God has to grow into love of God to attain to the supreme state of reality as the goal of life.
It is hoped the study of the present book compiled by Sri U.Narayana Rao, may help the sincere devotees to tread the path to Liberation by Divine Grace.
Om Tat Sat.
DL 6.4.2019 C. Trivikrama Rao
Om Namo Bhagavate Krishnanandaya
Om. The 31 excerpts contained in the present book, named "Spiritual Journey in October" are obtained from the book "Es-says in Life and Eternity" of H.1-1. Pujyapada Swami Krishnananda of The Divine Life Society in Rishikesh. An investigation of the structure of Nature and the obvious processes of the Universe are discussed in the original book. The excerpts culled from the original book must be read with the requisite concentration. Those devotees who are unable to read big books. Due to paucity of time in the modern days can relish the excerpts. It can he read on any clay in the year, not strictly in the month of October.
Pujyasri Swami Hamsanandaji of Sivananda ashram. Rishikesh and Smt. Ramanijayaram of Madhava Divya Dham. Bengaluru are instrumental in bringing out this book, for which I am very much thankful to them. I also thank Sri C. Trivikrama Rao for offering beautiful foreword for this book. My thanks also goes to my wife, Smt. U. Saraswathi, who helped me in pre-paring this book and in proof reading.
Last but not the least. I thank Sri Chakra Offset Printers. Tatipaka for printing the hook beautifully.
Choicest blessings would be showered by Gurudev Swami Sivanandaji Maharaj, Sri Swami Krishnanandaji Maharaj and Sri Swami Hamsanandaji Maharaj upon all those readers with happiness. Peace and wisdom.
Om Shantih Shantih Shantih
Date : 24.1.2021
Yours, In the Service of Gurudev,
Mankind, today, with all its appurtenances of knowledge and experience gained through the historical movement in several thou-sands of years on this earth, can be said to have learned no lesson at all as to where its true blessedness lies or what are the mistakes that it is daily committing in its life at every moment of time. Humanity's blunders in its entirely empirical-oriented sense-ground perception of the values of life are as it has been briefly outlined above. If the human individual persists in this kind of thinking and acting inwardly as well as outwardly, such a life of the human individual cannot but be designated as a cauldron of hell-fire—which, unfortunately, to the bound individual, appears to be a highly satisfactory state of affairs, because of its dictum, as the poet well said in this context, that 'It is better to reign in hell than serve in heaven’. The hope of mankind is not going to be in the continuance of this state of affairs even though it may go on through millions of years of human history. The only way of true freedom and final beatitude is to bring about a transvaluation of values and for the soul to stand erect in right perspective instead of viewing things as through a mirror of reflection or with head below and legs up. The whole situation has to be reconstructed in one's own consciousness, firstly by not imagining that human society is really external to oneself, that the world is truly outside the process of perception, or that Eternity is removed from temporality by spatial distance. This is so be-cause the perception of an external multitude of society consisting of human and other living beings arises on account of the said topsyturvy perception caused by one's alienation from the totality of the Absolute. The establishment of oneself in a state of consciousness which stabilises one's being in a nonexternalised Universal Pure Subjectivity of Selfhood is the final panacea for the sorrow of mortal existence. This is the great meditation in which every soul has to engage itself throughout its career in life. This is the final duty inseparable from man's aspiration, nay, the only duty in life.
The meditation of life, then, is the gradual establishment of wholeness in the midst of particulars, in every level, in every stage, in every degree of evolution. Grandly has it been proclaimed by the Bhagavadgita, in a majestic epic fashion, that the Universal, designated as Brahman, has hands and feet everywhere, has eyes, faces and heads everywhere, and it exists enveloping everything. It is the illuminator of all the sense-organs, but in itself it is none of them. It is the support behind all diversity, but it cannot be identified with anyone of these. It is the reality behind appearances. Being above substances and qualities, relations and modifications, it cannot be said to have any attributes; though no quality or attribute can subsist without it being there as the basic substratum. It is inside and outside all things; but it has itself no inside and outside. Being the foundation for all movement and activity, it cannot be characterised by any movement or activity. Being the very Seer and Knower, as the basic Subject, it cannot be seen, heard or even thought by the mind. Being endless and infinite, it is everywhere like a limitless expanse, but as the Self of everything nothing can be nearer than its presence. Among beings that are divided it may look divided as their substratum, but by itself it is not divided, as it is the very awareness behind all possible division. Everything is absorbed into it, everything is consumed into it, as it were, and it stands unparalleled as a blend of Eternity and infinity, as the Light of all lights, glorying in its radiance beyond the darkness of ignorance.
As we have in the field of modern astronomy and physics the theories of the "Big Bang" and related descriptions of the cause of the universe, the scriptures delineate the process in which one can consider the universe as having evolved from the state of an original ubiquitous continuum, into greater and greater diversified forms and more and more externalised shapes. The affirmation mostly centres round the enunciation that the Supreme Being was engaged in Tapas, which is the original concentration of the Universal Consciousness in a cosmic act of willing and deciding to be something logically differentiated from its own pure being. Unless there is space to create, there cannot be creation, and unless there is time to create, there would not be creation even then. The beginning of creation implies, therefore, the projection of space and time in a blend of instantaneous, coeval and coeternal mutual participation. Space-time is the fundamental base, the matrix of creation. The Will of the Absolute becomes an intensely powerful vibration into which the space-time complex reduces itself, that is to say, what is known as space-time is itself an unending sea of omnipresent vibration. This pressure leads to motion and there is then an incipient tendency created towards the manifestation of what are usually known as primary qualities arising out of the basic potential of a three dimensional pattern given rise to by the otherwise non-dimensional infinite force. The fact of motion causing this fundamental primary quality of distance and duration working as the three-dimensional presentation, manages to further diversify the three-dimensional spatiotemporal manifestation into the governing principles of what are externally known to us as sound, touch, colour, taste and smell. The created universe at present only in a state of vibration concretises itself into a fivefold categorisation, dividing the cosmos into a fivefold perceptible object. In Sanskrit traditional terminology, the five sense-data mentioned are known as Sabda, Sparsa, Rupa, Rasa and Gandha. These are the potentials which concretise themselves further into the grosser visible universe of gases, liquids and solids, of Space, Air, Fire, Water and Earth. The entire universe has these potentials and forms as its original building bricks, of which it is made and from which it is inseparable.
4. ARE THERE REALLY MANY GODS?
Are there really many gods? The answer is yes, and no. There are many gods, because there are many degrees of the subject-object relation obtaining successively in a sequential order of the manifestation of the universe, and these being transcendentally operative powers beyond the subject and the object, they are verily gods, the shining ones, the conscious relation without which perception or knowledge would be impossible. But, in fact, the gods are not many, since their manifoldness is just a nomenclature designating the levels of consciousness through which the Absolute descends in terms of several subject-object relations in the story of creation. The Indian religious perspective visualises, adores and worships many a god, the god of the house or the family, the god of the village or the community, the god of the town, the god of the nation, the god of war, and the god of peace, and as on, because these concepts of many divinities follow automatically from the concept of there being many superphysical causes behind the multitudinous variety of events and occurrences in the world of Nature. For anything that happens there is a god behind it, just because nothing can happen unless it is caused by something which itself is not the happening. Millions are, therefore, the gods in number, but there are no million gods, even as the million rays of the sun cannot be regarded as anything but a single projection of the omni-faced solar beam. The Indian religious system adores such gods as Sri Ganesa, or Ganapati; Devi in the form of Durga, Lakshmi and Sarasvati; Siva, known also as Rudra; Vishnu, called also Narayana; Surya or the divinity in the Sun; and Skanda, or Kartikeya or Kumara, the second son of Siva. The sections of people that devote themselves to one or the other of these gods arc supposed to form a specific pattern of religious approach, these being six as mentioned, related to the six gods of worship (Shanmata). The philosopher Acharya Sankara is credited by tradition with the work of having established these six ways of divine worship (Shanmata-Sthapanacharya). These six modes of worship form the six systems of spiritual approach, known as Ganapatya, Sakta, Saiva, Vaishnava, Saura, and Kaumara religious traditions.
There is something inside, within the physical body, which gives and meaning to the body, namely, the vital system, known as the operation of the Prana, which is an energy quantum distributed equally throughout the body, giving it strength as i f by the passing of an electric current through every pore and cell of the system. In fact, the life of the body is just the life imparted to it by the Prana. That part of the body which the Prana does not touch gets paralysed and is virtually dead. This means that the physical body by itself has no life, the life principle being the Prana, entirely. The Prana is said to function in five ways, and according to this fivefold function, the total energy of the Prana goes by the names of Prana, Apana, Vyana, Udana and Samana. Prana is the force that ejects the breath out in exhalation. Apana is what pulls the breath within in inhalation. Vyana is the circulatory force which causes the equidistribution of blood through the blood vessels spread out through the body. Samana is the energy of heat that digests food in the stomach. Udana takes one to the state of deep sleep and also is said to cause the separation of the true person from the body at the time of death. But, what causes the Prana to act in this manner in relation to the physical body? The answer is, the action of the mind working through the sense organs, namely, seeing, hearing, touching, tasting and smelling. The mind performs four functions, as Manas, or indeterminate thinking; Buddhi, or determinate and discriminative thinking; Chitta, or memory and remembrance; and Ahamkara, or the ego principle which asserts and arrogates to itself the self-identity of human individuality through all its layers, right from the physical to the causal. The necessity and the desire of the mind working through the sense-organs to dwell in the physical body for fulfilling its own purposes causes a tremendous pressure exerted on the whole body, this pressure being called the Prana. The Prana, thus, is a sort of link between the physical body and the internal organ, the psyche. The faculties of feeling and emotion in all their variety are characteristic of the mindstuff, the psychic organ.
Man believes that his freedom of action is ultimate; that, verily, he can conquer Nature itself. An investigation into the subtle potentials of human nature and the underlying basis of human history would, however, reveal that human freedom is, after all, an ego's boast, and all activity is, in the end, a universal activity, and there is no such thing as an individual doing anything by itself. This is so also because of the interconnectedness of things in the universe, one thing depending on another thing even for its very existence, and there is no room whatsoever for the survival of an imagined total activity or total freedom of any individual. The epic illustration of Krishna being at the back of every action of Arjuna brings out the unavoidable situation of the Absolute being there at all times as the directing power behind every event in creation and every action appearing to proceed from the individual nature of the various species of living beings. The evolution of consciousness does not end with man, really. Man may be described as the image of God only figuratively but not truly, for there has to be a further ascent in the process of evolution from man to superman, a stage which acts as a link between man and the ultimate Godhead. Indications of the higher category of levels of life, beyond the human state, are available in the positive statements recorded in the Upanishads to the effect that above even the best of human beings there are the levels of the realms of the Pips, Gandhurvas, Devas, the higher gods of the heavens, the perfected ones almost converging in the stages of Virtu, Hiranyagarbha, Ishvara and Brahman. That is to say, man has to evolve further on and he at present occupies a place somewhat midway between god and brute crossed at one point. The restlessness, the finitude, the consciousness of limitation from every side, the incessant and resistless longings for expansion of one's suzerainty in larger dimensions of space and endless life in time, nay, even the compulsions of being born and dying, announce in loud voice that man is far from the expected perfection to be reached in Nature's scheme of evolution, and there is a long way higher up, from man to Godman, and from Godman to God Himself.
The quantum theory of physics proclaimed that matter is a series of wave patterns or particles of light which behave like waves, and matter is convertible into light and energy. It may be that light and energy, too, can be converted into matter as it seems to have happened when gases became liquids and liquids became solid substances with heat involved in the process of motion and friction. The world stood before the scientist as a gigantic miracle of power and radiance, rather than as a stuff looking like dead matter and unintelligent crudity. It is the Theory of Relativity that actually shook the world of science from its very roots, which, while it accepted that matter and energy are interconvertible (E=mc2), rose up to the necessity to investigate the very structure of Space and Time in its relation to Gravitation. The Relativity position is difficult to explain in a few words, but suffice it to say that it discovered that Space is not like a sheet spread out in a three-dimensional fashion, and Time is not just linear motion. Space and Time go together to constitute what may be called Space-Time and form a four dimensional continuum, very uncomfortably breaking down all the rules, laws and regulations of the three dimensional world of common perception. Even the Space-Time continuum should not be regarded as a substance somewhat like a tangible something. Rather, the Space-Time of Relativity is a conceptual field of mathematical point-events, reducing staggeringly the whole world to the nature of a universal mind-stuff. The inter-connectedness of phenomena in the so-called events of the world taking place not in Space or in Time, but in a four-dimensional Space-Time continuum, was taken up with its more advanced implications for consideration by Alfred North Whitehead. In his philosophy of the 'Organism', Whitehead arrived at the conclusion that there are no set causes producing set effects, but anything can be an effect or a cause in a symmetrical manner of action and reaction, since the world as it is discovered by the Theory of Relativity is an organism with its parts integrally related to it. Cause and effect are continuous, the absence of which continuity would sever any possible relation between cause and effect.
8. VERILY, THE ATMAN IS CONSCIOUSNESS ITSELF.
The Upanishads hold that the waking consciousness is a whole by itself and constitutes a transparent activity of the mind, as contrasted with the states of dream and sleep. To the Upanishads, the mind by itself is not self-conscious and it is illumined by the true self within, the Atman, which is the only thing that is finally conscious; verily, the Atman is consciousness itself. Its consciousness permeates the entire physical system in the waking condition and even the body then appears to be conscious, as we can feel a sensation of awareness, in waking, when we touch the body, or when we experience ourselves as a whole body in that state. The waking state of consciousness is occupied with perception of objects and storing within itself impressions of the forms of perception. These impressions remain, like the repeated impressions created on the same receiving film of a photographic camera, as impressions piled one over the other as a large mass of chaotic accumulation of potentialities of perception which are driven into the subconscious level when active perception takes place through waking consciousness. In dream, into which the mind enters due to various reasons, direct perception as in waking ceases and the potentials remaining as impressions of earlier perceptions begin to act as the media of the perception of objects in dream. In the state of deep sleep even the subconscious operations cease on account of consciousness getting dissociated entirely from the body and the mind, and the individual then resting not vitally connected to either the body or the mind. But the large accumulated potential of psychic impressions created earlier acts like a thick cloud which prevents the consciousness in sleep from being self-conscious. Thus, in sleep there is no consciousness of its dissociation from body and mind or of the fact of consciousness alone being there in that state. The thickened potentials causing unconsciousness in sleep are the larger storehouse created, something like a sea of latent impressions, from which impressions capable of being projected out alone rise into action in dream and waking. The waking, dreaming and deep sleep states are herein explained as conditions of the mind-stuff, the psyche proper beyond which is the transcendental Atman-consciousness.
9. POWERFUL LITERATURE CAN SHAKE THE WHOLE WORLD IN AN INSTANT.
All kinds of art come under the study of aesthetics. There are indeed many arts: kinds of expertness in methodical presentation to the point of perfection. Good writing is an art, good administration is an art, maintenance of good health is an art, being always happy within is an art, to live harmoniously with one's atmosphere or environment is an art, to think logically is an art, to be truly good is an art. All things that 'satisfy' are embodied in art. The greatest arts, supreme objects of aesthetic enjoyment are, to state them in an ascending order of importance, architecture and sculpture; drawing and painting; music, dance and drama; and, above all, literature. Arts which require for their presentation heavy external material are lowest in the category of aesthetic evaluation. Architecture requires the largest quantity of weighty material. Sculpture also needs material but in a lesser quantity. Drawing and painting require the least of materials, just canvas and ink. Music and its attendant forms of aesthesis require no physical material at all, not even ink and pen. What is needed here is just a methodical production of sound. Art is either visual, audible or intellectual. Architecture, sculpture, painting and drawing are examples of visual beauty; music is auditory, dance and drama are both visual and auditory; while literature is purely ideational, intellectual, an act of pure understanding and feeling. The higher we go in the order of ascent in the scheme of the presentation of beauty, the more enjoyable does the object become, so that powerful literature can shake the whole world in an instant. While the other arts have only a local importance and do not produce such a permanent effect on the mind as literature does. In the perception of art, there are, again, two phases as stated, namely, that which attracts by its beauty and that which attracts by its sublimity. The towering Himalaya Mountains, the astounding expanse of the blue sky with its wondrous stellar kingdom, the majestic tumult of the ocean, and even the grand personality of the elephant evokes our sense of wonder and awe, partly because their largeness of quantum and unapproachableness makes us feel small in our own selves. The ego is pressed down to its minimal level and there it is in the absence of an egoistic affirmation of ourselves that we appreciate in wonderment the power and greatness of things which are above us and seem to defy us with all our assumed importance.
What is it that makes anything look beautiful? Philosophically. We may say that the proportion in which the Infinite, or the Absolute, as the highest universal, is visualised in any particular thing will decide the extent of beauty which that thing evokes. It is the universality involved in the particular that is the source of beauty and the sense of perception. In the perception of beauty, the processes involved are the perceiving mind, the act of perception and the object itself. The question arises, whether the object can be considered to be beautiful even if there is no one to perceive it. We may perhaps, in a way, concede that beauty and perfection do not require somebody to know them, since the flower and the moon and the charming face of a child can remain beautiful even if there is no one to see them. Our commonsense understanding would like to assert that this is true, but is this really true? Does the flower know that it is beautiful? Is the moon beautiful to itself? That is, does beauty really from part of the beautiful object? Here we seem to be in a doubtful position, and it does not look that, in the end, beauty can justify itself apart from the process of its being perceived. If being perceived is what gives beauty to an object, it would mean that beauty is in the perceiving mind rather than in the object. It has been well said that beauty is in the beholder. But here, again, is a question: can the mind perceive beauty if there is nothing to be perceived at all? Does the mind know that it is the source of beauty even if it has nothing to conceive or think of? This position lands us in an unavoidable conclusion that beauty is not the entire prerogative of the object called beautiful; nor can it be said that it is enough to have a mind alone and there need be no abject to apprehend beauty. Beauty, then, comes out as a consequence immediately following a reaction taking place between the perceiving subject and the structure of the perceived object. A grieved mind can see no beauty in anything, as a sick body can see no taste even in the best articles of diet. The need of the perceiving mind determines the extent of the perfection that it can behold in its object, for beauty is a form of perfection. Beauty, then, would belong neither to the subject nor to the object.
The term, Moksha, describes the final aim of all things. The resistless asking, characterising all living beings in a variety of ways. Has to end somewhere, sometime. There cannot be only asking without the chance of fulfilling it. An endless asking for wider dimensions which can be seen working vigorously in every living being, and most perspicaciously in human nature, has to have its origin nowhere except in the very consciousness and the very life principle of all beings. Universal freedom is Moksha. This is the summum bonum of life and the meaning of all existence. This is the highest Purushartha, the pinnacle of all possible aspiration. Man lives, finally, to strive towards the attainment of Moksha. Nevertheless, the aspiring human individual involved in the shackle of body and mind has to pay some attention to what exactly is to be done while actually involved in this manner. The physical body has its material needs and the mind has its emotional calls. The working for Moksha is also to take into account these lesser psychophysical requirements. The physical needs come under the realm of Artha, including material possessions necessary for the survival of the physical body. Food, clothing and shelter are the barest minimum necessary for the continuance of life. Everyone has the right to live, even as everyone has a duty to achieve ultimate freedom. The emotional needs of people coming under what is known as Kama are equally important. This is a field of psychic activity that is concerned with the perception of beauty and the aesthetic excitement that such a perception evokes in the individual. Even if every kind of material comfort is assured to a person, the peculiar inner longing for a satisfaction appearing to be even superior to the pleasures of physical ease cannot be ruled out of consideration. People can die for the sake of imagined joys even sacrificing all wealth and position in society. This is an area of desire in its subtler aspects apart from the grosser asking for food and the like, which includes all forms of the impulse to reproduce replica of one's species. Dharma is the law that grants freedom and also restrains freedom at the same time. While it is necessary to give freedom to everyone, it is also necessary to limit everyone's freedom to the extent to which everyone else also needs freedom equally.
The well-known programme revolving round the dictum, 'Love thy neighbour as thyself', has far-reaching implications. Why should one love one's neighbour? The Vedanta philosophy would give the answer: 'Because thy neighbour is thy own self'. Those who render the greatest service to mankind are people who do not merely behold in front of them a multitude of persons and feel a social obligation or a political necessity to be considerate and serviceful to them, but those in whom a deeper impulse is welling up to see their own selves in all. The spiritual leaders of mankind alone can render the greatest service to people in terms of their very souls, while the common social-welfare projects can touch only the fringe of humanity's needs. To serve the body with food, clothing, shelter and medical attention is indeed good, but a better service would be to educate people and make them confident in themselves with the recognition of the dignity of man as an emblem of divinity. To work for the salvation of the soul is the greatest of all services. The saints and sages, with their powerful thoughts and concentrated feelings, render a service which cannot be seen with the physical eyes. These masters descend on earth for a while, think a few thoughts that will vibrate for all time to come, and leave the world unnoticed. These are the greatest geniuses of the world, not the kings, the wealthy magnates and marshals of war. The civic duty of man is a basic common-sense consideration that one should have to the environment of people and the world, and it is good to be always friendly with the community around. Not only that; it would be better to be kind and serviceful to persons in the vicinity. If charity begins at home, love and service also start in the immediate neighborhood. Goodness of behaviour is more a quality of outlook than a quantitative reach of one's actions to distant corners of the world. To be qualitatively good in respect of even one person would speak more gloriously of that source of service than to be just quantitatively philanthropic to a large number of individuals. Goodness does not require any announcement in public, it does not seek recognition, not even a word of thanks, for, "Is not the least one in this world going to be recognised as the first in the kingdom of God?"
Violence, untruth and incontinence of the mind and the senses which are the primary individual evils are the sources of all public evil and social disharmony. Apart from these three great vows of abstinence and positive conduct emphasised again and again, ancient teachers of the economics of life have further added that no one can appropriate to oneself what does not belong to oneself by rightful means, and also one cannot accumulate belongings more than what is necessary or a reasonably comfortable and healthy way of living. Living a life of luxury is overstepping the limits of the normal requirements of life and is violative of not only the principle of goodness in one's own person but contrary to the consideration that one should have for the welfare of people other than oneself. Excess in the form of hoarding is considered as equivalent to theft, since theft is nothing but depriving others of what should truly belong to them. Profiteering and black-marketing which often become the very objective of certain enterprises would not only deal a death blow to one's own health, peace and security but also cause social restlessness and all the sorrows engendered absence of equity in dealing with people, all which goes by the name of corruption whose forms are many and often very subtle. There are people who make it their occupation to cleverly manipulate ways and means to break very law whenever it is enacted. The Sutra of Patanjali, while giving the highest importance to Ahimsa, Satya and Brahmacharya, mentions the need also to observe the principles of Asteya and Aparigraha: that is, non-stealing and non-acceptance of luxuries or excessive comforts. These fivefold norms laid down by Patanjali in his Yoga-Sutras sum up the law of the economy of life, individually as 'Well as socially, indicating thereby that no one can aspire for perfection who does not strive for the maintenance of internal harmony in one’s own thoughts, feelings and volitions, and external harmony through contributions towards peace. This is the duty of each and everyone in human society, and meticulously performed duties are automatically followed b the requisite privileges which come as blessings on everyone as a result of one good behaviors.
Democracy is considered as the government of the people, by the people and for the people. The idea is that every citizen in the country is made to feel a responsibility in regard to the well-being of the nation. Democracy has been regarded latterly as the most suitable form of government, since it deprives a single person or even a group of people of the authority to lord over others, and the authority is i invested with the citizens as a whole. It is a government of common consensus of the public in general, so that no one can complain as to the nature and the form of the working of the governmental machinery. However, Plato considers democracy as the worst form of government, because it invests the mob with power and treats the wise and the fool on equal terms. In the system of voting, democracy has one vote for a genius and one vote for the illiterate and the ignorant. The quantitative assessment of the value of administration does not pay attention to the quality that is necessary for managing the affairs of the State. For instance, the person chosen by ten great masters of understanding and experience may be defeated in election by a person chosen by several hundreds of the common masses, who are empowered by the system of democracy with an equal value as that which one would associate with men of true knowledge and experience. Further, the democratic system has no foolproof method of avoiding such forms of corruption in election as coercion, intimidation and even purchase, when the voters are not always people who are properly educated in the meaning of democracy and a democratic organisation of government. Plato feels that one day or the other people are likely to get fed up with the system of democratic government, for, in this system, people are made to feel that they have the power of choice, while, in fact, they have no such power. For reasons already mentioned earlier. Above all this, there is the well-nigh possibility of the person chosen democratically as the leader turning a despot and a veritable king by himself. The present day humanity cannot choose any other form of government than a well constitute democracy, since, while it may have certain characteristic which are bad, the other systems have characteristics which are worse.
Ancient Indian historical tradition traces the beginning of all things to God, the Universal Being. This Original Centre becomes a Creative Principle known as Brahma (in the masculine gender), from which inexhaustible Source emanated the first four Kumaras, the eternal divines known as Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanatana and Sanatkumara. They are said to have refused to obey the order of Brahma, when he asked them to help him in creation, telling him that they are not interested in such work, as they would like to be established in the Supreme Reality. This evoked the anger of Brahma with the intention to curse them, but his wrath could not be directed against them because of their divine power. But anger risen has to be expressed in some way as it cannot be withdrawn, which burst out through the forehead of Brahma as the wrathful Rudra, known also as Siva. Siva, however, though apparently born of Brahma, was not in any way subsidiary to Brahma, but equally great, if not greater, as stories in the Puranas would make out amply. Subsequently, Brahma thought of continuing the work of creation and projected ten subsidiary creative powers or progenitors of future history, known as Marichi, Atri, Angiras, Pulastya, Pulaha, Kratu, Bhrigu, Vasishtha, Daksha and Narada. These names correspond also to the great Rishis or Sages, endowed with cosmic capacity. From Brahma arose also the First Manu, the father of humanity. This created 'Inclusive Person' is separated into the first male and the first female, called in the language of the Puranas, as Manu and Satarupa. The Srimad Bhagavat says that this couple had two sons and three daughters, whose internal relationship as well as relationship with the first progeny of Brahma mentioned above became the cause of the further diversification of the creative forces. The Ninth Book of the Bhagavata states that there is also another secondary form of creation, as we may say, arising from the Sun, on the one hand, with whom begins the Solar of Dynasty, and the Moon, on the other hand, who is the source of the Lunar Dynasty, which twin line is said to reach up to the latest personages in recorded history. F. Pargitor, a western scholar who has made a special study of pre-historic Indian tradition, has taken pains to write an illuminating book on this ancient sacred genealogy.
To put it more plainly, the form of the educational career can carry with it no other purpose in the end than to perpetuate a physically and egoistically comfortable existence—to wit, the acquisition of food, clothing and shelter; gain of name, fame and power, and the like—and where the purpose of education has been recognised to cover such fields as the welfare and protection of other persons than one's own self, it would be easily discovered that it is only an extension of these circumstances of the psychophysical individual, for an interest in others is seen to be conducive to an intensification of the satisfaction of these urges as well as to famish better chances of their fulfillment. This is really the unpleasant secret that comes to the surface of one's observation behind the so-called noble efforts of man, based on this educational wisdom, born of this view of the universe. This should also explain why man has always been feeling insecure in an unfriendly environment, irrespective of a love for others and a sense of brotherhood which he has been demonstrating and apparently working for externally, for these otherwise noble virtues are based on false values and cannot hold water for long. The truth, when it is clearly put, would appear to be that we live in a world of love and cooperation that arise from an internal dislike for and irreconcilability with others. Such is the world, such is life, and such is man's fate, when such is the structure and aim of our general attitude and our education. One cannot expect students and teachers to behave in a way that is not demanded by the essential nature of things. This is modern education in its plain colour, when its foundations are probed adequately. As interest, love and cooperation are characteristics of the soul, these qualities cannot be expected from any soulless system of education based merely on the mechanics of a physical observation and study of inorganic matter, even if it be the study of the solar and stellar systems and the electromagnetic the core of The educational process, therefore, has to begin with the external word of observation, Nature and society; then go deeper inward into the conditioning factors of mind and consciousness in the observation of the outer world. Cosmos. Atoms, which, science tells us, are the building k of observation, Nature and society; then go deeper inward world conditioning factors of mind and consciousness in into the outer world; leading, in the end, to an enlightenment in the universal purpose ranging beyond and determining both the world and the individual.
Human feeling seems to be made in such a way that one cannot help concluding that there must be some causes behind the workings of Nature. The movement of seasons, the rise of the sun and the moon, the appearance of stars in the sky, the winds and the rains, and several such phenomena that excite a curiosity in man to know more than what he actually knows at present in a state of ignorance of such mysterious factors as those which must be at the back of all things happening in the world, stir the religious impulse within. Events evoking the perception of some excellence and superior power demand an explanation as to their occurrence, and it lies in the way of the working of some invisible force behind things and events. The stage of religious awareness which is generally known as Animism regards Nature as inwardly filled with certain intelligent spirits, thus making every part of Nature a living act of some hidden purpose and intention. Nothing in Nature is dead or bereft of life. These spirits may be said to be souls embodied in all natural phenomena, countless in number, as the events in Nature are innumerable, defying human understanding. The awe and fear that almost always follow immediately from the recognition of spirits indwelling Nature summon a corresponding feeling of respect and adoration that one feels in regard to these angelic causes working behind Nature. The initial form in which this respect for the `above' is manifest, in practice is ritual, characteristic of every religious behaviour. Features known as taboo, totem and fetishism, are generally associated with the earliest forms of religious awakening, taboo meaning the prohibition to go near or come in contact with anything that one regards as endowed with a repelling power or unholy influence, totem being usually an animal connected with a community of people, or even an object so connected, determining the welfare of the community, such as the cow, the peepul tree, or a sacred stone, which are said to be endowed with powers of this kind and fetish being an object considered as an abode of a superior spirit or power. The stage which is known as Spiritism considers these indwelling spirits behind Nature as not just lodged in things phenomena but having the ability to move about and work according to their will, doing good when they when they are pleased and harm are displeased.
The earliest records of spiritual research are to be found in the Rig-Veda Samhita, which consists of hymns, or Mantras addressed to gods, or Devas, who are considered as deities or divinities capable of controlling the destinies of people. The history of the growth of the religious consciousness from its incipiency to its mightiest comprehension can be read between the lines of these sacred prayers, the Mantras of the Veda. The trend of beholding the manifold as expressions of the One, and the One as revealing itself in the many, is unmistakably traceable to the hymns of the Rig-Veda. Through a succession of this unfolding movement of religious visualisation, the Veda-Samhita proclaims its final word on the nature of Reality. The Purusha-Sukta, or the hymn of the Cosmic Person, embodies in itself the most magnificent description of the spiritual unity of the cosmos. In the spirit of a great attainment the Seers of the Veda explored the majesty of the universe as an embodiment of a Supreme Intelligence and Power hiddenly present everywhere and controlling all things as the Soul, the very Self of everything. From the recognition of another-than-the world location of numberless deities, the vision moves to the glorious presence of scintillating gods animating all creation, who are, further, beheld as the twinkling eyes and thoughts of a boundless God in whom they are all comprehended in a single instantaneous and divisionless entirety. In the Purusha-Sukta is given, perhaps, the earliest complete presentation of the nature of the Ultimate Reality as both transcendent and immanent. The all-encompassing Purusha envelopes and permeates creation from all sides and stands above it as the glorious immortal. The Purusha is all that was, is, and shall be. The universe is a small fraction of Him, for He ranges above it in the infinitude of His glory. From Him proceeds the original creative Will, later identified with Brahma Hiranyagarbha, or Prajapati. The Purusha-Sukta proclaims once and for all the oneness of God, the universality of religion, the organic inseparability of the constituents of social structure, and the utter imperative of it being not only possible but necessary for everyone to realise in direct experience the Supreme Being, the Infinite Persons, in act of inner awakening. The Seer of the Veda loved humanity and creation as much as he loved the Almighty God.
The quintessence of the Veda Samhitas, and their hidden purport is said to be codified in the Upanishads, which unveil Truth without the embellishments and formative features through which it was seen in the Samhitas. The Upanishads hold that the pleasures of the senses are ephemeral, as they wear away one's energies and tend to one's destruction. Even the longest life with the greatest pleasure is worth nothing. The only desirable aim in this world is the knowledge of the Self, the Atman. The pleasant is one thing and the good is another. Both these come to a man together for acceptance. The wise one discriminates between the two and chooses the good rather than the pleasant. The foolish one chooses the pleasant and falls into the net of widespread death. By knowing It Reality, everything is known at once. One who knows It becomes It. Reality transcends the three states of waking, dream and deep sleep. It is the cessation of all phenomena, the peaceful, the blessed, the non-dual. It is Truth, Knowledge, Infinity. One possesses all things simultaneously and becomes all things at once, and enjoys all things instantaneously, who realises Brahman as identical with one's own being. The Infinite alone is bliss; there is no bliss in the small and the finite. Where one sees nothing else, hears nothing else, understands nothing else—that is the Infinite. Where one sees something else, hears something else, understands something else—that is the finite. The Infinite is the immortal. The finite is the mortal. The Infinite is in front, behind, to the right, to the left, above, below and everywhere. It is all this at the same time. For one who knows this, everything springs from his very self. The universe, manifest as well as unman' fest, arises for him spontaneously from his Self and serves him without limitation of time or place. No one loves an object for its own sake. All love is an inspiration come finally from love of the Universal Self. Things are dear because of the Infinite that peeps through them. The Infinite summons the Infinite in the perception of the beloved. Persons and things are not dear for their own sake. Though all love has a selfish origin in the world, it has a transcendent meaning above the phase of the seer and the seen. Anyone who, by an error, regards anything as being outside oneself, shall lose that thing, whatever it may be.
20. WHAT DO THE EPICS TELL US?
There is a passage in the Mahabharata that the Veda is afraid of one who tries to approach it without having been properly trained in the meaning of the Epics and Puranas, the idea being that the subtle and intricate significance hidden beneath the Vedic lore cannot be properly comprehended without the illustrative, expository and feelingful narrations in the Epic and Purana treatises. The Ramayana and the Mahabharata are the great Indian Epics, written in magnificent heroic poetry, the first by Valmiki, and the second by Vyasa. Lyrical mellifluousness and a subtle inwardly moving force are the characteristics of the poetry of Valmiki. Its beauty may be compared to a flowering rose or lotus in the morning and its irresistible force of conviction to the unshakeable Himalayas. The Mahabharata of Vyasa, on the other hand, is a virile tumult of the waves of stupendous thoughts that drown the reader and at once lift him up to the surface to dash him on its own body, which it does at the same time, in an attempt to energetically portray the frailties of human nature and the irresistible power of God, continuously operating, winklessly awake, in the uni-verse. What do these Epics tell us? The an of teaching here is supremely psychological and just fitted to appeal to the emotion and the reason at the same time, together with a power to stimulate the longings of the deepest soul, the self of everyone. If the Veda glories in its peak of sublimity looking on all things down on earth with a conde-scending concern for even the lowest to enable it to rise to the requirements of the highest attainment, the Epics speak to man as a father would admonish or as a mother would instruct, as a friend i would advise or a beloved would coerce. They comprehend in one grasp the needs of people as souls seeking a ray of light from the horizon of life, as verily Heirs-apparent to the throne of Immortality. The seven books of the Ramayana and the eighteen books of the of Mahabharata may be said to represent the seven stages in the life of man and the eighteen steps in the effort towards perfection. The Mahabharata is the grand tale of the rise and fall of the human empire.
The Puranas are chronicles containing ancient history, mythology and longer or shorter discourses in religion, philosophy, Yoga, mystical attainment and spiritual realisation, and several other kindred subjects. Large sections of the Puranas, which are eighteen in number, are devoted to a glorification of the exploits of the great Divinities; Vishnu, Siva, Brahma, Devi, Ganesa and Skanda; either in their original forms or through their manifestations. Also, Surya and Vayu occupy prominent places in the Puranas, and receive great attention. The Puranas also describe at length such other subjects as medicine, art, rhetoric and literary appreciation, grammar, ethics, politics, ritual, social laws of the classes and the stages of life, pilgrimage to holy places, religious vows and observances, exposition on the value of charitable gifts, and the philosophy of Samkhya Yoga and Vedanta, in a variety of ways. They also embody vivid biographies of sages, saints, kings and stalwarts who lived and moved in this world as paragons of wisdom, power and moral toughness. Of the eighteen Puranas, six are devoted to Brahma. Six to Vishnu and six to Siva. From the point of view of their essential content, philosophical profundity and religious impressiveness, the most important among them are the Vishnu Purana and the Srimad Bhagavata Purana. The Bhagavata, in particular, deals with practically everything that a standard Purana may be expected to propound in religion, philosophy and theology. The cosmography of the Puranas includes descriptions of the astronomical universe, the solar system and the fourteen worlds or realms of creation. The physical plane itself is said to consist of seven continents and seven oceans, all concentric in their arrangement, every succeeding continent and ocean being double the preceding one in extent. There is also a calculation which states that among the five elements—Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Ether--every succeeding element is ten times the preceding one in largeness. The philosophy of the Epics and Puranas is essentially the pre-scholastic Vedanta, in which the higher aspects of Samkhya and Yoga become amplified.
Religion is not merely discipline but also love and grace. The instance of the Gopis is, on the one hand, an illustration of the superindividual and supersocial nature of the soul's asking for God, and, on the other hand, the way in which God can dissolve His parliament and council of enactments and rules, and run to the devotee personally without the use of secondary means of assistance. The twenty-second verse of the Ninth Chapter of the Bhagavad Gita is a promise of God that He shall personally take care of His devotees when they are undividedly united with Him. Spiritual ecstasy is the subject of the five chapters delineating the Rasa-Lila of Krishna in the Tenth Book of the Bhagavata. Here devotion reaches a pitch to the point of breaking and collapsing as the individual is melting down into the blissful menstruum of the sea of God. Devotion of this kind, known as Ragatmika-Bhakti, or the devotion of ecstasy, as different from Gauna-Bhakti, or formalistic and disciplined form of devotion, commences with a kind of agitation of the soul within, a stimulation it feels in itself, not through the intellect, mind and senses, but verily as it is in itself, when the devotee attempts firstly to cry for God in a state of bereavement from Him; secondly becomes temporarily unconscious through exhaustion caused by the intensity of longing; and thirdly enters into a rapturous impulsion to imitate God, His features and actions, and dances in the spirit of a possession, as if that which one imitates has actually entered the person so imitating. The best actors in a dramatic performance are those who virtually become the very part they are playing and lose their personal identity. The Gopis were in this penultimate state of actual union with God, which, further on, led them to a state of tearing down all the empirical shackles of personality-consciousness and external relation in a verily maddening reach of giddy heights where it is not merely the devotee that runs after God, but God Himself running to the devotee, God wanting man much more than man wants God. It is not enough if the devotee wants God; the highest devotion is where God loves the devotee and behaves as f he is a very servant of the one who loves Him. The lives of the saints who lived such a life of God-possession are examples practically to be seen in the history of religious thought and practice.
A complete diversion from the traditionally accepted ways of religious conduct and worship, as are the well-known ways of the Vedas, Upanishads, Epics and Puranas, is to be found in the body of teachings known as the Agamas and Tantras. The law and order of the world of humanly conceived dictates melts into a nearer-still connection between man. world and God. The principal Agamas are the Vaishnava, Saiva and Sakta, centring round the concept of the Divinities Vishnu, Siva and Sakti. There are also the Agama and Tantra ways of worship of the other gods, as Ganesa, Surya and Skanda. The Vaishnava theology of the Agama type is especially propounded in treatises like the Pancharatra and kindred works: The devotee of Vishnu perform worship of Vishnu as the Supreme Being conceived in five ways: Para. or transcendent form; Vyuha, or the categorised form as Vasudeva, Sankarshana. Pradhyumna, and Aniruddha, representing Krishna, his elder brother, his son and his grandson, respectively, who are brought together in worship and adoration as a complete body of divine power; vibhava, or the incarnation of God, as are the several occasions of God's descent into the world as enumerated in the Bhagavata Purana; Arches, or the form of God worshipped in an image or an idol symbolising the Universal as pointedly present in the particular; and Antaryamin, or the indwelling immanent form of God as present throughout in creation. The devotion with which the seeker of God tries to commune himself inwardly takes the shape of outer worship in the beginning with its usual traditions and regulations, requiring materials of worship such as flowers and offerings. Subsequently the external appurtenances diminish and gradually become unnecessary when a higher mode of worship through the mind alone suffices as surpassing visible forms of worship. The peak of vaishnava devotion is to be found recorded in the Tenth Book of the Bhagavata Purana, and the four thousand Tamil verses of the Vaishnava saints called Alvars, especially the thousand songs known as Tiruvaimozhi of Nammalvar. The ecstasy of the Gopi-type of God-love rises into an exhilarating pitch of a kind of God-madness in Nammalvar's poetic compositions. The devotee is immersed in the sole awareness of God.
24. THE WORSHIP OF SAIVA IS GRADED IN A FOURFOLD WAY.
The Saiva Agama method of the worship of God is less formai than the way of the Vaishnava, less restrained and less accustomed t social forms of regulations. Siva is the Supreme God of the Saiva: system, who is called Pati, or Lord over all creatures, the latter being known as Pasu, the literal meaning of which is animal or the beastly nature. Physically bound by the encasement of the body, man is indistinguishable from the animal species. The Pasu, or the individual, is bound by the noose of Maya, which is the veil cast by God on all things. The dirt that vitiates the mind of the individual is called Anava, that is, an atomic obscuration of consciousness in respect of the universal God. We know that a little finger placed over the eyes can blot out the powerful light of the large body of the sun in the sky. In some such way, the Jiva, or the individual, is caught in the snare of world-existence and attachment to objects. The grace of God is the way of the liberation of the individual. The worship of Saiva is graded in a fourfold way: Chaiya, or the external service rendered by the devotee, such as collecting flowers for worship in the temple, ringing the bell, cleaning the premises of the shrine, and the like; Kriya, or the internal service, such as assisting the worshipper in the 'holy of holies', and doing actual worship as well as its preparations; Yoga, or the devotee becoming the worshipper himself in a state of attunement of the limbs of his own personality with the limbs of the Body of God, in a process of placement known as Nyasa, in which case articles of worship become redundant and the mind of the devotee is itself the supreme offering to God, external worship becoming internal inseparableness in an act of intense concentration and meditation; Jnana, or the way of wisdom and realisation of God as He is, in which condition the devotee rises above even the state of Yoga at-onement, and the soul unites itself with God-Being. The great Saiva saints, Appar; Sundarar Jnanasambandar and Manikyavachagar, are said to represent, respectively, these four grades of devotion to the Great God, Siva. The four saints are known as Samaya-Kuravargal, or the progenitors of the standard ways of approaching God in the superb reaches of divine devotion. The lives of the Saiva saints, sixty-three in number, are glorified in the Tamil work called Periya Puranam.
The system called Tantra has always been regarded as an esoteric and secret way of spiritual practice, not supposed to be accessible to the untrained minds of the masses. The secrecy about the practice consists in the novel outlook of life which the Tantra requires the seeker to entertain, a way of looking at things different from the one in which people are accustomed to see, interpret and evaluate things. The teachers of the Tantra hold that a seeker on this path has to outgrow the usual human outlook and develop a superhuman and attitude in respect of the world. Since this would be too much to expect from the common man, Tantra is supposed to be a closed secret, whose gates can be opened only on conditions of specialised training in the mastery of one's mind and senses. The philosophy of Tantra) is based on the concept of a dual nature of everything, duality based on unity. Nothing is single, but everything is bipolar. The so-called unity of things is only a form taken by a particular manner of the coming together of two forces, the subjective and the objective, designated as Siva and Sakta, the positive and the negative poles of experience. According to the Tantra, the sorrows of life arc caused by a bipolar existence, a split of the one into two, because the truth of things is oneness and not the apparent dual form of the existence of anything. The dual form creates an ambivalent attitude of like and dislike at the same time between one pole and another, love getting suppressed when hate supervenes and hate being driven underground when love gains the upper hand, while the fact is that both these attitudes are simultaneously present in an individual hiddenly, and only one of the aspects comes to the surface as and i when the occasion demands. Human nature, thus, is in a state of perpetual conflict; it is never in state of balance between its two compulsive attitudes. To get back from duality to real unity is the process of Tantra Sadhana The. Great dictum of the Tantra that desire can be overcome only by desire, even as the object can overcome only by the object. The other aspect of this principle held by the Tantra is that 'that by which one falls is also that by which one rises' (yaireva patanam dravyaih, siddhistaireva).
Philosophical mysticism reaches its culmination in an especially elaborate literature of the Agama type of esotericism, known as the Yoga-Vasishtha. It is a book of thirty-two thousand verses divided into six parts designated as Vairagya, or Renunciation; Mumukshutva, or Aspiration for Liberation; Utpatti, or Creation; Sthiti, or Preservation; Upasama, or Dissolution; and Nirvana, or Salvation The method of teaching adopted by the text is story, anecdote, illustration and image, which it considers as a better way of instruction than logical argument or reasoning. The teaching emphasises that when there is perception of an object by the seer or observer, there has to be presupposed the existence of a consciousness between the subject and the object. If this conscious connecting link were not to be, there would be no perception of existence.There cannot be a consciousness of relation between two things unless there is a consciousness relating the two terms and yet standing above them. The study of the perceptional situation discloses the fact that the subject and the object are phases of a universal consciousness. Creation is twofold—objective and subjective. The objective side of creation consists in the world created by Brahma, or the Original Will that projected the substance of the world as well as everything contained in it. The subjective world is the nature of the object as conceived by the mind of the perceiver. differing according to the species of the individual perceiving, such as the celestial, human, etc., and the inner constitution of the mind itself and the different pressures and moods such as love and hatred, or like and dislike. The Yoga-Vasishtha accepts that there is `externally' something in the form of the creation of Brahma, though the way of experience of this objective world by the individuals is limited and conditioned by their own psychic structures and modifications. Though the Yoga-Vasishtha, in its mental theory of the creation of the world, may appear to land one in the doctrine of extreme subjectivism, this predicament is avoided by a simultaneous pronouncement that the individual mind is essentially inseparable from the Cosmic Mind. As the dream world vanishes in waking, the waking world vanishes experience in the experience of the of the Absolute.
There are seven stages by which the spiritual seeker rises progressively. The first one is Subheccha, or the good intention to pursue the right path of knowledge and virtue. The second is Vicharana. or an investigation into the ways and means of acquiring true knowledge. The third is Tanumanasi, or the attenuation of the mind due to the subtlety attained by it in the practice of deep concentration. The fourth is Sattvapatti, or the realisation of spiritual equilibrium wherein the light of Brahman splashes forth like lightning in one's experience. The fifth is Asamsakti; or non-attachment to anything that is external on account of attaining the vision of universality. The sixth is Padartha-Abhavana, or the non-perception of materiality and the perception of radiance filling the whole universe, as if the entire existence is lit up with endless light. The seventh is Turiva, or the ultimate state of experience of identity with the Absolute. The last of the stages mentioned is one of actual realisation and is known as Jivanmukti, that is, liberation while living. When the body drops, one attains Videhamukti, or disembodied salvation. The liberated sage is a master and a Superman. His actions are universal (Mahakarta), his enjoyments are universal (Mahabhokta), and his renunciation, too, is universal (Mahatyagi). Spiritual practice consists mainly in three processes: (I) The affirmation of the universality of Brahman in one's own consciousness, thinking only of That, speaking only about That, discoursing among one another only on That, and depending on That alone, known as Brahma-Abhyasa; (2) The restraint of the mind by eliminating its desires one by one gradually, adopting as many ways as would be necessary in accordance with the nature of the desires, known as Mano-Nigraha: and (3) The restraint of the Prana. by the well-known method of Pranayama, called Prana-Nirodha. The Prana, the mind and the spirit form the degrees of ascent as well as descent and one can start the practice from above downwards or from below upwards, according to one's temperament and predominating inclination. The most potent way, however, is Brahma-Abhyasa, which is the affirmation of Brahman in life, continuously, at all times, and in all conditions, as one's sole occupation, purpose and duty. This is the principal method of meditation, which restrains the mind and the Prana simultaneously.
The existence of God has been an intriguing theme that occupied the minds of the philosophers throughout the ages: 1. It has been held that the concept of God implies at the same time the concept of the infinite, and such a concept cannot arise in the mind of anyone unless the infinite really exists. Thoughts cannot arise from a vacuum. 2. Further it is seen that in the world everything is a manifestation of some cause behind it, so that we may hold that the world in its entirety, which discloses the nature of an effect on account of its transiency and urge for onward evolution, can be explained only in terms of a cause behind it, which itself cannot be transient or subject to evolutionary process. Cosmic evolution is accountable only on the existence of a cosmic God who Himself is not caused by anything prior to Him. God is timeless Eternity. 3. The precision and method with which the world is seen to be working with its sun and moon and galaxies can only be the work of an Architect who designs and fashions this perfectly ordered way of the working of things. 4. The finitude of every form of individuality implies a consciousness of one's finitude, and the consciousness of finitude spontaneously suggests a consciousness of that which is not finite. What is not finite is infinite, which is exactly the description of God. 5. There is also a tendency in people to ask for more and more of things, and such an asking would have no significance if it cannot be granted or fulfilled. The 'more' has to culminate in a possibility of its utter attainment in a state of perfection, where the 'more' melts into the 'most', the sups endlessness, endlessness, where the sense of more reaches its finale. 6. Further, our moral sense, which commands us to do good and not bad, expects a corresponding reward for such a be haviour of discipline, but for which there would be no incentive to be good or do good. The dispenser of justice behind good and bad deed has to be someone beyond the world of good and bad, and such a one, obviously has to be an infinite being. 7. Since consciousness ever manages to remain divisionless, that is, infinite, this infinitude is the nature of true existence,- God. There cannot be a consciousness of the object by the subject, unless there is a transcendent conscious principle relating the subject and the object, and yet, by itself, transcending subject-object relation, which would be the veritable infinite. We call it God.
The Mimamsa is a system of enquiry and interpretation of meaning, rather the meaning of meaning. The Mimamsa is especially known as Purva mimamsa, or the earlier Mimamsa, to distinguish it from the Uttara mimamsa or the later Mimamsa, known also as the Vedanta. The Mimamsa establishes the authority of the Veda, and makes out that its purport is ritual, on account of which it is also known as Karma-mimamsa. The system bases itself on the Brahmana portion of the Vedas which interprets the scripture ritualistically, as also on the Srauta Sutras which expatiate on the methods of ritual. Philosophically, in its essential outlook of life, the doctrine is similar to the Nyaya and the Vaiseshika empiricism. The Brahmans are texts which are attached to each of the four Vedas, and they rationalise the ritualistic trend in religious performance. The supreme authority for the Mimamsa is verbal testimony (Sabda-Pramana) on the basis of which principle the Veda is regarded as without any human author (Apaurusheya) and as eternal by itself. The Eternity of the Veda is proved by the semantic relation obtaining between a word and its meaning, which relation is said to be a permanent one. The letters which form a word are impartite compounds and, hence, imperishable. A letter as uttered or articulated is different from the mode of its utterance. Here comes in the speciality of the Veda Mantra which cannot be pronounced as one likes, and its meaning consists in the mode or the tone (Svara) in which it is uttered or chanted. A word is an aggregate of letters with a location of their linguistic position in a sentence, but the meanings expressed by the words are universal in their nature. The relation between the word and its meaning, thus, is eternal. However, it does not follow from the above that all literature is also eternal. The speciality of the Veda is that the sequence or order in which the words are arranged is permanent and unchange-able and cannot be modified by any human agent. That is, the Veda cannot be edited or improved upon by any one, since it is by itself an eternally established body of know- ledge requiring no amendation. The Mimamsa system has an elaborate technique of determining the definite rules that are to be followed in the correct interpretation of the Veda, so that its real meaning may be ascertained.
The Bhagavad Gita, known as the 'Song of the Blessed Lord', occurs in the Mahabharata, and purports to be a dialogue between Krishna and Arjuna. It is believed that the Gita furnishes in a novel way the quintessence of the Upanishads, providing a teaching on the proper relationship obtaining among God, the world and the individual. Here is, in this teaching, an interesting blend and proportion, the coming together of the call of duty, a harmony of human relation, a consciousness of a higher agency operating behind man and society, the interrelatedness of all the things in the world, and the supremacy of Godhead above everything. Humanity as a whole is represented in the personality of Arjuna, and God in the Incarnation of Krishna. The soul of man is immortal, his body is perishable. The noumenal and the phenomenal join hands in the formation of the human personality. As the world includes the individual as a content of itself, it is the duty of everyone to participate in a wholesome manner and unselfishly in the evolutionary process of the world which ranges from the visible formation of matter, life, mind and intellect to the higher realms of the several ways in which God reveals Himself in creation. Life in the world is not all, the destiny of man is above this world. World-experience is a preparation for God-experience. The individual is a passage to the Absolute. Work becomes a compulsive duty as it is an expression of the way in which the individual can be conscious of its harmonious relation with the world, and finally with God. Since God is immanent in the world, work done in the world becomes also a worship of God. Since the forces of the world constiture an organic network of intrinsic relation, no one can be free from the obligation of the duty, not only in the form of cooperation with other living beings but also with Nature as a whole and with God in the light of His eternal order in the form of creation. Action binds when it is thought to be done for one's own benefit. Action does not bind when it is done as a cooperative participation in the universal activity of creation and in the fulfilment of the Will of God who is the central Agent of all process, action and creative movement, everywhere. Unselfish dedicated work for the welfare of all (Sarvabhutahite ratah) and constant devotion to God as the universality inseparable from one's true being are marks of perfection (Sthitaprajna).
Religion, in fact, is the way in which we daily establish our relation with God. The manner in which we contact God in our life is our practical religion. Mostly, our love for God keeps us in a state of reverence and awe and creates in us a particular type of devotion, known as Aisvaryapradhana-Bhakti, i.e., the love of God and adoration of God as Creator, Father and Sovereign Supreme, as Ishvara, or the Master of Creation. But there is another type of internal contact that the devotee establishes with God, more intimate, we may say, in a sense, an attitude of affection for God, which goes by the name of Madhuryapradhana-Bhakti. Here, intellectuality, ratiocination and analytical approach cease, and the soul speaks to God in its own language of unquestioned rapture. God is the repository of supreme compassion, pity and mercy. He is not merely a judge who is only mathematically precise, regardless of our representations. God is concerned not only with law, but also justice. Dharma is not merely law, it is also due dispensation of justice. If there are five hundred witnesses manipulating against an innocent person, he can be penalised with even capital punishment, because there is evidence. This is law working. But it is not justice. God is justice, it is true. Not merely law; but God has also a tender feeling towards His creation, to man and to all creatures. To know that we love God and that God loves us is certainly a greater satisfaction than any other consolation that we may have in terms of legal protection or judicial security. God is nearer to us than we imagine; and He will help us even if we are unconscious of His presence. It is not that God thinks of us only if we think of Him. Our relation to God is not a bargain or compromise; it is not a give-and-take covenant. God is portrayed not merely as Grandfather (Pitamaha) or Father (Pita) but also as Mother (Mata) and Supporter (Dhata). It is not just enough it all we want God; His wanting us is. Indeed, the supreme attainment. The Lord's promise in the Bhagavad Gita is well known: "Those who contemplate on Me undividedly and worship Me as the All, to them, who are ever united with Me, I provide what they need, and protect what they have."
Sri Ram Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram, Om
Sri Ram Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram, Om
Sri Ram Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram,
Serenity, regularity, absence of vanity.
Sincerity, simplicity. veracity,
Equanimity, fixity, non-irritability,
Adaptability, humility, tenacity,
Integrity, nobility, magnanimity,
Charity, generosity, purity:
Practise daily these eighteen ities,
You will soon attain Immortality.
Brahman is the only real entity,
Mr. So-and-so is a false non-entity,
You will abide in Infinity and Eternity,
You will behold unity in diversity,
You cannot attain this in the University,
By Grace of Guru, you can attain Immortality
Sri Ram Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram, Om
Sri Ram Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram.