Friday, November 21, 2008

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 18 (of Vol 3) Dated 20 Nov 2008

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 18 (of Vol 3) Dated 20 Nov 2008

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by Periyavaal of Kanchi Kamakoti peetam, over a period of some sixty years while he was the pontiff in the earlier part of last century. These have been published in Tamil by Vanadi Padippagam, Chennai, in seven volumes of a thousand pages each, as Deivathin Kural. To day we are proceeding from the last para on page number 79, of Vol 3, of the Tamil original.)
(Note:- These e-mails are available at constantly up-dated.)
14. When a person realizes that, 'all life forms are intrinsically one and the same and God the immanent life principle, exists in all of them', then he becomes a source of divine grace! Instead of loving others from the level of equality, he humbles himself to a lower level and loves the whole creation as a manifestation of God. With that attitude, he serves them as a 'Daasa', a servant of God! This is what the Vaishnava-s call, 'naichiyam'. It is only when this attitude instead of being only a spoken expression, moves in the realm of action, it becomes 'Arul' that is, 'Grace'. With no pride whatsoever, there is genuine Love towards all life forms as a manifestation of God! This is when preaching becomes practice of Social Service!
15. Thus by 'Jeeva Kaarunyam', while he does social service, he raises himself to the highest level spiritually as a by-product. What he does as a 'upakaram' for others may or may not be received in the correct sense. The receptor's ego may be boosted. He or she may be led into a life of exploitation of others beneficence in some cases. But the giver of 'upakaram' anyhow benefits immensely, by dissolving his own ego, which simply 'goes'!
16. Similar to ‘Jeeva Kaarunyam’ ’Paropakaaram’ is also slightly inaccurate as I was saying. By his ’Jeeva Kaarunyam’ he raises himself. Similarly ‘Para + Upakaram = Paropakaaram’, that is, his action of helping others results in helping himself towards self improvement and self realization! So we should be calling it as, ’swaya upakaram’ only. This is rather funny! Only when he has no notion in his mind that he is being kind and considerate, his compassion becomes divine grace! Similarly he benefits best when he is not at all motivated by selfishness. Thus by helping others you help yourself and 'Paropakaaram' becomes 'swayopakaram'!

17. Once you have developed the perspective of Adwaitam then this differentiation of ’swayam and param’ that is we and they, ours and theirs; disappear. Everything is seen as manifestations of God or self. Such a person will be happily helping others without any thought of me and mine or they and theirs! Here too the phrase, ’Paropakaaram’ is improper. He reaches the stage in which Appar one of the four leading of the 63 Siva Bakta-s known as Naayanmaar-s, said, “en kadan paNi seidu kidappade”, meaning, ‘my duty is to work’. This should be the motto of our life.
18. The moment you hear the word 'kadan', do not think of indebtedness and credit rating, giving a slant to the intention as though one did one's duty out of a sense of compulsion and recompense if you fail to do so! This is not what is meant. When you do your duty with love in your heart that you are doing something for the well being of all, then work becomes worship! We see in this world so many ‘sthavara’ (immobile), ‘jungama’ (mobile), animate and inanimate life forms. They are all fulfilling the needs of each other in some way or other. A river never questions as to hoe much water it had to give away. A flower never hesitates in imparting it’s fragrance to the wind. That some bees and honey suckle birds will be attracted by the fragrance and there distributing its pollen, just happens. A tree does not keep account of the fruits that it gave away. That the seeds were spread around is a natural corollary. Every cell in the individual human body co-operates and cares for every other cell.
19. In this set up we as human beings, receive a lot from birds, animals, plants and inanimate objects, to make our life possible in this world. But we are the only species who believe in doing business with all this and exploiting endlessly shamelessly. First of all we claim ownership on illegal grounds and then exploit! Actually we should be having a sense of gratitude and indebtedness towards everything we receive from nature, as directly occurring things such as, water, air, earth, minerals, and so on; and the products of nature such as fruits, grains, edible roots and milk. (Man makes food of the flesh of animals, fish and birds and eggs, there by being responsible for their slaughter! I am not touching this subject here.) That is why, in the Vaidik religion, there are many rituals for thanking the Nature and its component parts!
20. Plants have life, sense and feelings is not only a discovery of Jagdish Chandra Bose in modern times, but were well known to the Sages of the past. The tree Aswatham was known to have life and revered as the King of all static life forms. There are mantra-s to be chanted to thank them for their contribution in our lives. There is 'doorvaa sooktam' for expressing our gratitude for grass and 'mruttika sooktam' for thanking mud, in our Veda-s. In the daily 'Brhma Yagnam', there is 'Tarpanam' to thank the divine powers existing in all animate life forms and inanimate objects too.
21. There is a crow somewhere. It eats a fruit somewhere and drops its shit in our garden. That grows in to a neem tree, giving us shade, its fruits, branches as fire wood and air passing through it having medicinal value. That crow has benefited us. The dog guards our house and property. Horse gives us a ride and helps in carrying loads or pull the cart. There is no end to the usefulness of the Mother Cow! Thus having got the help and benefit from every part of Nature, what do we as human beings do in turn? Is it not a sin, not to respond to other's help in kind or kindness? Tamil proverb says, "nanri marappadu nanru anru", meaning that, 'it is not good to forget a good turn from others'. Valluvar says emphatically, "ennanri konraarkum uyvu undaam uyvu illai sei nanri konra magarku", meaning, 'ingratitude is an unforgivable sin!'. So have we been told by Veda Vyasa and Manu.
22. Whether we do it ceremoniously using Veda Mantra-s or go by traditional village customs, most of the inanimate objects' divine powers will be satisfied. In addition, plants should be watered. Animals should be treated with kindness and love. They are 'vaay illa jeevan-s', incapable of communication by word of mouth! We should never be cruel to them. In olden times, not only inside the village, outside where they used to go for grazing, people used to dig ponds for the animals to drink water. The cow feels like scratching its neck. It does not have hands like us. They cannot even ask you to do it for them, as they cannot communicate. Knowing this, it used to be the custom to erect tall scraggly stone pillars, here and there at odd places, for their benefit. This is mentioned as one of the important Do's in the books on 'Dharma Needhi', as, "aatheendu kurri niruvudal".
23. Then finally when you come to Man, the human being, he has more problems than all the other life forms put together. Most of them are self created by his own mind. Correcting this is the Paropakaaram done by the Saints and Mahatma-s of this world! (To be continued). Sambhomahadeva.



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