Monday, 31 December 2012

My favourite moral story


The pride and concept of the two foolish pundits
Siddhamuni continued the narrative.

Sri Narasimha Saraswati told the pundits that it was wrong, presumptuous and childish on their part to believe that they had mastered all the Vedas and gained all knowledge. It is indeed beyond the ken and capacity of anybody, even of gods, to have full and proper understanding of the Vedas.
The Vedas are indeed countless and endless - "Ananta Vai Vedah", it is said. Even Brahmadeva could not gauge the extent of the Vedas. The Lord Himself had to incarnate on earth as Badarayana, .ie, Vyasa, and he collated a small portion of them into the four Vedas, which we have heard of. It is indeed a very very tiny portion of the original Vedic lore abstracted for the purpose of making a beginning and for paving the way for Dharmic life. Even Badarayana, in truth, could not find the beginning and end of the Vedas. As even these four Vedas, tiny portions from the original which is limitless, cannot all be studied and understood by anyone, even if he is allotted aeons of life. Vyasa Bhagvan taught each one of the Vedas (some little portion of each) to one student each, each of whom was specially blessed with the full extent of a Kalpa for their study, Paila learnt a small portion which goes under the name of Rig Veda, Vaisampayana learnt another small portion which goes under the name of Yajur Veda; Jamini learnt Sama Veda and Sumanta learnt Atharva Veda. These at least they could learn, only because of the special grace of their Guru, Vyasa Bhagwan. That being the case, how ridiculous it was for any man, whoose life span was so short to claim and boast that he had mastered the Vedas!

In ancient times, Bharadwaja Rishi resolved himself that he should learn and master all the Vedas. As he proceeded with his study, he found that although decades and centuries were rolling by, the progress he could make was too little. He undertook penance to propitiate Brahma and when Brahma appeared before him, he prayed "Grant me as much life span as would suffice for my completing the study of the Vedas". Brahmadeva smiled, as if in derision, and said, "My child! I can make you Chiranjeevi (an immortal), but alas, it is beyond all my powers to help you to make a complete study of all Vedas. See there are infinite heights of the Vedas". As he said this, Bharadwaja Rishi could see the splendorous mountains of the Vedas, their peaks hardly visible, and penetrating into the highest skies. Their effulgence was like that of a million suns. Bharadwaja instantly realised his folly in hoping that he could master all the Vedas, which would never be possible even if he granted millions and millions of aeons as his lifespan. He was crest fallen and fell at the feet of Brahma, that he should somehow bless him with the Vedic wisdom. Brahma gave him three handful of material from the infinite mountain peaks and told him "If you can study and understand this much, you will be most blessed indeed." Bradwaja strove for all his life and he could not complete that much study even, of the three handfuls of material that Brahmadeva gave him. Guru Nath again said, that being the case, how fallacious it is for a mere mortal of he Kali age to claim that he has mastered all the Vedas, alas!

Guru Nath now started speaking of the glory of the Vedas and their structure, which was unheard of before by any. Guru Nath said that this was what had been told Vyasa Bhagwan to each of his disciples regarding the respective Vedas he had taught them. Briefly it is as under;

Rig Veda has its auxiliary Ayurveda, the Science of Life. It is presiding deity is Brahma. Its Gotra is Atryasa. Its chandas is Gayatri. The Rig Veda Purusha has red lotus like broad eyes, and a three feet long shapely neck. He has beautiful flowing locks of hair. Rig Veda has all in all 12 sections or divisions. It's systematic recital, with the correct inontation, endows greatest merit. Much of the portion of Rig Veda is not known to any in the Kali Age.

Sri Narasimha Saraswati told the pundits that the Vedas are most profound. They are sole protection for mankind both in the world here and worlds thereafter. They are to be worshipped as Mother. Humility is the true mark of scholarship. He again emphasised that the knowledge, if at all anyone can gain and profess about the Veda, will be just no more than a grain of sand while the Vedic lore is like the unending stretch of the sandy shores of all seas of the earth.

The pundits, in their pride, could not grasp the wise counsel of Sri Narasimha Saraswati and still kept up the air of arrogance.

Thus ends the Twenty-sixth Chapter of Sri Guru Charitra giving "A brief account of the four Vedas and their infinite glory".

Glory to the All merciful, the OmniPresent and the ever responsive Guru Nath.

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Non-dualism: The Heart of Religion


Rumi or Jelaluddin Balkhi (1207 – 1273), from the book “Rumi: Selected Poems”; Penguin; trans Coleman Banks, 1995.

It's the man who was looking for treasure... He wants me to finish his story...
Don't think of him as a seeker, though. Whatever he's looking for, he is that himself. How can a lover be anything but the beloved?
Every second he's bowing into a mirror. If he could see for just a second one molecule of what's there without fantasizing about it, he'd explode.
His imagination and he himself, would vanish, with all his knowledge, obliterated into a new birth, a perfectly clear view, a voice that says, I am God.
That same voice told the angels to bow to Adam, because they were identical with Adam.
It's the voice that first said, There is no reality but God. There is only God.
(from the poem In Between Stories)


Kabbalah: The meaning of God

"An impoverished person thinks that God is an old man with white hair, sitting on a wondrous throne of fire that glitters with countless sparks, as the Bible states: “The Ancient-of-Days sits, the hair on his head like clean fleece, his throne–flames of fire.” Imagining this and similar fantasies, the fool corporealizes God. He falls into one of the traps that destroy faith. His awe of God is limited by his imagination.

But if you are enlightened, you know God’s oneness; you know that the divine is devoid of bodily categories — these can never be applied to God. Then you wonder, astonished: Who am I? I am a mustard seed in the middle of the sphere of the moon, which itself is a mustard seed within the next sphere. So it is with that sphere and all it contains in relation to the next sphere. So it is with all the spheres — one inside the other — and all of them are a mustard seed within the further expanses. And all of these are a mustard seed within further expanses.

Your awe is invigorated, the love in your soul expands."

"The essence of divinity is found in every single thing — nothing but it exists.... Do not attribute duality to God. Let God be solely God. If you suppose that Ein Sof emanates until a certain point, and that from that point on is outside of it, you have dualized. God forbid! Realize, rather, that Ein Sof exists in each existent. Do not say, “This is a stone and not God.” God forbid! Rather, all existence is God, and the stone is a thing pervaded by divinity."

- Rabbi Moshe Cordovero

God is that which Is — YHVH, one of the main Hebrew terms for this Reality, might even be translated “Is.” God is not an old man;God is What Is. The Infinite is everything. It is the only thing.

“God” is an imprecise name for the only thing in the universe that actually exists.


"Christ has each within him, whether human being or angel or mystery" (Gospel of Philip 56:14-15).

"People cannot see anything in the real realm unless they become it...if you have seen the spirit, you have become the spirit; if you have seen Christ, you have become Christ; if you have seen the Father, you will become the Father" (Gospel of Philip 61:20-32 cf. 67:26-27)


Padmasambhava said:

My father is the intrinsic awareness, Samantabhadra (Sanskrit; Tib. ཀུན་ཏུ་བཟང་པོ). My mother is the ultimate sphere of reality, Samantabhadri (Sanskrit; Tib. ཀུན་ཏུ་བཟང་མོ). I belong to the caste of non-duality of the sphere of awareness. My name is the Glorious Lotus-Born. I am from the unborn sphere of all phenomena. I act in the way of the Buddhas of the three times.


Shankara, the eight-century Indian saint, whose insights revitalized Hindu teachings, said of his own enlightenment:

"I am Brahman… I dwell within all beings as the soul, the pure consciousness, the ground of all phenomena... In the days of my ignorance, I used to think of these as being separate from myself. Now I know that I am All."