DEIVATHIN KURAL # 29 (Vol # 6) Dated 26 July 2012
DEIVATHIN KURAL # 29 (Vol # 6) Dated 26 July 2012
(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavaaL of Kanchi Kaamakoti Peetam, over a period of some 60 years while he was the pontiff in the earlier part of the last century. These have been published by Vanadi Padippagam, Chennai, in seven volumes of a thousand pages each as Deivathin Kural. Today we are going ahead from page No 200 of Volume 6 of the Tamil original. The readers may note that herein ‘man/he’ includes ‘woman/she’ too mostly. These e-mails are all available at http://Advaitham.blogspot.com updated constantly)
34. What is this release or delinking of the cucumber fruit? Normally we know that other fruits fall off from the tree by their own weight, once they are ripe enough. Cucumber grows in creeper plants, which is permitted to spread around on the ground only. Farmers do not try to grow it on interconnected nets on stilts as they do with grapes, snake gourds, beans and bitter or ribbed gourds. The cucumber ripens at the ground level only. So it cannot fall off. Finally when the plant disconnects from the ripened fruit, there is no dropping off. The plant moves off leaving the fruit where it is, as it is. The small connecting stem like thing clearly separates from the fruit with no oozing or dripping. Even when the fruit is not yet ripe, you can see the clearly marked joint in the stem like thing connecting the fruit with the plant like the umbilical cord between the baby and mother, where the delinking is to take place, sometime in the future.
35. This is how the Gnaani is delinked from the involvement with the ties of the world. It is not as though he is like a fruit that falls off a tree. Even after ripening he remains as he is. Whatever work he may be doing outwardly he may continue doing so, but inwardly he would have become totally static अचल தன்னில் நிலை பெர்ற்றவனாக இருப்பான். For him there is no going to some other world like a Vaikundam or Kailasam. That happens only to Dwaitins. For the Gnaani, here in this world itself, while seemingly still in this body he would have experienced ‘Aatma Saatchaatkaar’, that is, ‘आत्म साक्षात्कार’ aka Self-Realized. That is the release unto total liberty with no ties whatsoever! What he had done was ‘Aatma Vichaara’ targeting his own Self, by which he has come to realize that he is the same stuff as the Aatma, which is not just some stuff! Then all ties drop off automatically and Dwaitam vanishes. Like the cucumber remains at the same spot on the ground, he will also be seen to be and known as a Jeevan Mukta. His individuality is no more. His identification with this body is no more. There are no binding ties that used to connect him with the mesh of worldly involvement. This is the Cucumber Mukti.
36. This is what I often used to say. Having heard me talking like this one learned Pundit Vidwaan told me something in addition. Actually what he said was not something more, but a different explanation as per his understanding, that he told me. Normally what happens to most of the fruits that fall off the mother plant? They keep lying there till someone picks it up or eaten by animals or become degraded there. But this ripe cucumber, unlike the other over ripe fruits, explodes and disappears without a trace, sans rotting and bad smell. He said that as per his understanding, he used to think that the ego in the person just goes, without a trace. “But your explanation of disconnection and on the spot release seems to be more appropriate and that the explosion of the fruit was slightly more violent and not very suitable” he said. His version and interpretation still appealed to my mind, making me to mull over it. Then I could include his idea of the VeLLarippazham (வெள்ளரிப்பழம்) blasting itself out of existence by saying, “The disconnection from the plant is Self Realization while still in the body known as Jivan Mukti and then comes disappearance without rotting and without a trace, known as Videha Mukti”.
37. Jivan Mukti is when a person still seems to be as before, but his mind has become inactive, his delusion of ignorance has vanished, his individuality is no more, and he is one with the reality of existence. This delinking of worldly Maya from him is what is compared with the cucumber fruit separating from the plant or rather the plant cutting itself and moving off. That is my explanation. Though Loka Maya is not there, his body is still seen to be there. In the eyes of the beholder, he seems to be another body, another person, isn’t it? Though he is not conscious of his body, we are seeing him as another ‘sareera’ the body. Till there is ‘praarabda Karma’ (प्रारब्द कर्म), that is already accumulated load of past meritorious actions and sins to be cancelled out are in balance; things such as being adored and admired by many and hated and ridiculed by some, periods of falling ill with diseases or periods of good health will all be experienced by the body. Though in his mind he is not affected by any of these opposites of good and bad experiences, the body remains the target of Karma till their effectiveness is over. Though there are many other interpretations about the Gnaani and Praarabdam, this is generally understood, as explained by me here. Even after being delinked from the plant the cucumber fruit is there in form. Like that even after Realization by a Gnaani, the Jivan Mukta is there in the body or with the body, till one day the body also drops off when all accounts of Karma are cancelled out and we say that he has cast off his mortal coil. That is Videha Mukti. While the body is still alive and he is experiencing the oneness with the Aatma, is Jivan Mukti. Now as the body drops off and he is one with the only reality of existence, is comparable to the cucumber finally exploding in to smithereens.
38. Unlike what was thought by that Vidwaan, in the exploding of the cucumber fruit also, there is ‘banda mochanam’, that is relief from attachments. That form or shape of the fruit does keep it bound, isn’t it? Similarly till there is a body, there are so many responsibilities such as that, it has to be carried here and there, arrangement made for natural ablutions, cleaned, bathed, dressed, fed, rested, and maintained. At least these things look like so many binding factors only. Thus only in death this attachment to the body seems to end, over and done. Even after this gross body is done with, there is the subtle body which continues with residual wants, needs, desires, likes and dislikes (aka Vaasanaas). It travels to different worlds (Lokaantara Praapty) of Vaikundam/Kailasam and such Heavens or Pitru Loka (that is, the world of the manes) or Hell to work out the comeuppance for the sins; and then in its time re-enters another body on the next birth day (of Punar Janma). Gnaani does not have any of these compulsions such as Sookshma Sareera of Gross Body or Lokaantara Praapty or Punar Janma of re-birth, but finishes as finally his separateness itself drops off! For us these things continue till one day, we also reach the shore of Samsaara Saagara. For us it continues because of residual Vaasanaas and the binding ties of the system of Karma. For Gnaani with the dissipation of Praarabda, all Karma ends as the body dies. That is, as the attachment with the gross body is over, there are no binding ties with a subtle body, and thus his death is a total delink or clean brake without a trace. Here the cucumbers’ blast of complete disappearance is a correct example. The delinking of the cucumber fruit from the mother plant is a parallel to Jivan Mukti. When praarabda bandam (प्रारब्द बन्दं) – inclusive of the deha bandam (देह बन्दं) (of identification of oneself to or as the body) – explodes, it is like what happens to the cucumber fruit in the end. This is really not an explosion outwardly but an implosion into reality!
39. I thought of another aspect. Amongst many of the Gnaanis who were Jivan Muktas, such as our AachaaryaaL, MaNikka Vaachagar, VaLLalaar and such, when their life time was over and they became Videha Muktas, there has never been any dissipation or rotting but only disappearance, making the onlookers wonder as to “What happened? Where did they go?” They seemed to have simply vanished into the cosmos! The disappearance of the cucumber fruit after it explodes is also like this only. It was there one second and it is no more the next second! Whether this is like that or that is like this, have it any which way you want! In that Mantra, that giver of Mukti Traiambakeswara, is said to be सुगन्दं पुष्टिवर्दनं, meaning fragrant and nourishing. Cucumber fruit instead of rotting and smelling explodes, isn’t it? Similarly the Gnaani’s body too just goes. But instead of the sound of blasting and vanishing into thin air, they are said to vanish – light unto light. Instead of ‘oli’ that is, ஒலி (sound which is a property of air), they are said to remerge into ‘oLi’ that is, ஒளி (light which is the property of fire). That light is also seen only for a fraction of a second and they are back with the omnipresent, all permeating formless state of अरूप (aroopa), non-partite ‘Akhandakaara’ Brhmam only.
40. When they make fire-works display during festivals in temples, they fire something known as ‘Out VaaNam’, that is, ‘அவுட் வாணம்’, which blasts, climbs up into the sky with a light and explodes into a brilliant display of colours. When the cucumber is ‘out’, it only makes a noise and when Mahatmas are ‘out’ there is only light. Not only at the end of attainment of Gnaana, but also at the end of Bhakti, people like Meera Bhai and Nandanaar simply vanished unto light, leaving no trace of their having been here, except possibly their poems and Upadesa! This can also be compared symbolically with the Cucumber Mukti!
41. I told that gentleman, “Since there are two stages as Jivan Mukti and Videha Mukti, my explanation can be said to hold good for Jivan Mukti and your explanation can be considered appropriate for Videha Mukti as it has happened in the case of many Gnaanis. So you do not have to feel bad about your understanding so far. In some races and competitions instead of there being a winner, sometimes they declare two persons as co-winners, isn’t it? So I gave him a ‘Prize’ of appreciation for his understanding and gave myself a tap on my shoulders also!
(To be continued.)
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