Friday, September 12, 2008

Deivathin Kural # 40 of (Vol 2) of 28 Oct 2007.

Om Namah Sivaya.

Deivathin Kural # 40 of (Vol 2) of 28 Oct 2007.

(Continued from DK # 39 of 24 Oct 2007.)

Devanam Priya Brashtavya:.

214. I was on the point of how, a person much interested in conduct of Yagnas / Havans, but not at all keen on obtaining Gnana, is like an animal, about whom the Devatas are very fond of. They will look after him the way we take care of a useful animal like the 'milch cow'. Though the Devatas are superior to human beings, their capacity for happiness is rather limited. They have not attained to and will never attain to; even a small fraction of the quality and magnitude of happiness, that a human being will experience on becoming an 'Atma Gnani'.

215. Thaithreeya Upanishad (II.8) and Brhad Aranyaka Upanishad (IV.3.33), compare the happiness level of the world of Human beings; the world of Pithrus or ancestors; Of Deva loka, and within Devas, Indra's, Brhaspathi's, Prajapathi's; each successively 100 times more than the previous; finally ends in the 'Brhmanandam of the Gnani' as the highest. So, Devas are not without their complaints and deficiencies. They are not working towards obtaining Gnanam either. They await the advantages to be recieved from the Human Beings, by way of Oblations in Yagnas. So, it stands to reason that, they are not interested in Human beings becoming Gnanis! Brhad Aranyaka Upanishad says so in these words, "Human being's getting to know 'Atma' is not liked by the Devatas!" Because, once the human being reaches that level, he will not be doing Karmas including Yagnas that satisfy the Devatas.

216. Say, we are employing a household helper at a fairly low wages. If we get a new helper, he would demand more. Our man wants to appear for higher studies and pass exams and become eligible for better jobs and better life. Tell me if we will be interested in his educational success? We will only want that he should not get through successfully in his endevour! If he passes the exam, he will be in a different level of expectation and prestige. He will look for some better job. We will have to look for some other person. We will not be able to get anybody, at the rate he was working! Same case here. Devas do not like to see us giving up our devotional activities. They do not like our becoming Gnanis. When we do not do that, we are their beloved!

217. If Gnani is not Devata's beloved, Agnani is Devata's beloved. So, the ignorant is the pet of the Gods, ie., 'Devaanam priyan', a new meaning for an 'idiot' that is in 'Vyakaranam' grammer in Sanskrit! There is a source for this word in the Upanishads. Sankara Bhagawath Padal in Brhma Sutra Bhashyam, (I.2.8.) when some one claims that, "if Jeevatma and Paramatma are one, then the problems and pleasures of jeevatma can happen to Parmatma too", in answering him, to say, 'how foolish can you be?' says, "idam thavat devaanam priya: brashtavya:". 'Devaanam priya:'--- sounds like a big title. But, when you look at the real meaning, it is, as good as being called ,'an idiot'.

218. In stone carvings about Emperor Asoka, we find that his name is referred as 'Devaanam Priya:'. Much before the time of Asoka, Panini has written in his book of Vyakaranam, that 'devaanam priya', is an idiot or 'moorkha:'. It would be wrong to think that, any insult was meant. Asoka embraced Avaidik Buddhism! In Buddhism, no one is supposed to do any Yagnam or any Yaaga Karyam. So none of them can ever hope to become the 'beloved of the Gods'. However as Emperor Asoka was quite kindly and accommodative of the Hindus, who did Veda Karyam of all sorts of Yagnas, he could have been called, 'devaanam priya:'. Anyhow, there was no fear of his becoming a 'Gnani' and in that sense becoming, 'devaanam apriya:'. May be it was only a mistake by some ill informed official who thought, 'devaanam priya:', a likeable phrase!

219. As a Devata's beloved, someone regularly doing Yagnas, if and when is about to become a 'Gnani', it is not much liked by the Devatas, as their supply is about to be affected adversely. So we have heard of how the Devatas create problems in the final stages before attainment of 'Gnanihood', by sending celestial damsels such as Ramba, Tilottama and Menaka etc., to disturb Viswamitra's Tapasya for example! Till the time before becoming a Gnani, that man was doing his bit for the conduct of Yagnas and Devatas were reciprocating by showering rains and helping humanity in so many ways. A sense of gratitude should always be there, for the rains recieved. So, you do Yaaga again. Probably the word, 'again' has come into being because, the process of mutual thanking goes on again and 'a gain'. That is why we do Yagnas. Some Brahmin gives the Devatas 'Havir baagam' as a representative of all, like one per family pays the taxes.

220. So, till he attains to the level of a Gnani, man does Karmas and remains a 'beloved of he Gods'! Like milking the cow, Devatas benefit from him. If the cow stops giving milk, what is the use of keeping that cow? So, till he behaves like a milch cow, Devatas will be happy with him. If and when, he stops being a milch cow, they will trouble him. So, he is an animal twice over. One for being an idiot, in not using his brains(and they give you rains); second, when you stop being useful, they treat you as we treat an animal, which does not give milk anymore. So, when there is no milk, no more a-gain. (The 'more' in Tamil means butter-milk!)

221. To know that the Devatas are non-different from oneself is Gnaanam. For this Vedantam shows us the way. It teches us the way towards stoppage and ceazing of all Karmas, Devata Upasana, prayers and Yagnas. Let me give you proof, as to how high that Vedantam was and is held in our country!

222. From amongst countless Vedas, Rishis cought hold of only a limited number. Since even that cannot be done full justice to, with the limited capabilities of human beings in Kali Kala; the Vedas were divided into1180 branches, with each branch having, Samhitai, Braahmanam and Aaranyakam, with the Upanishad kept at the end of Aaranyakam. The requirement was that an individual should learn at least one of them! At the least, 'one branch or shakai'! In later days, even this went out of practice. This present generation of ours, seems to have the unique honour of, 'annihilating the balance too!' Let it be set aside. For the present, to continue with the discussion, in each branch there is an Upanishad. Thus, what is left surviving now are, some Upanishads with Samhitai, Brahmanam and Aaranyakam ('S B A' for short). Out of them, there are some Upanishads whose 'S B A' are not being learnt through Adhyayanam any more! For some of them the text portion of the 'S B A', is not available any more! But the Upanishad portion is continuing or even flourishing. For example, in Rik Veda there is a 'Sankayana Saakai', whose Samhita portion is not available. We have lost it. At the end of that branch of Veda is the Upanishad, 'Kousheedaki', which is very much available. Similarly, there is the 'Bashkala Mantropanishad'. I heard that there is a copy of it in Adayar Library, inscribed on palm leaf. We do not know anything about the 'Bashkala Branch of Rik Veda, neither the Samhitai or Braahmanam portion. 'Katopanishad' similarly is from Krishna Yajur Vedam. Though the 'Katopanishad' is rather famous, as one of the ten important Upanishads, the Katasakai's Aaranyakam is not available! Atharva Veda Adhyayanam, is barely alive and just barely breathing in one or two places, in the whole of india! But, out of the ten important Upanishads, three are from Atharva Veda, namely, 'Prasnam, Mundakam and Maandookyam'!

223. That is, though we have let the main portion of the Vedas concerned with Karma go by default, we have not let go of, the portions concerned with the principles, concepts and Siddhantam of Vedantam! We have managed to protect them. There were many Upanishads. Two hundred years back, there was a gentleman in Kancheepuram, who is said to have written Bhashyam for 108 Upanishads. He came to be known as 'Upanishad Brhmendraal', There is a Matam in Kancheepuram on his name.

Dasopanishad or the Ten Upanishads.

224. Adi Sankara, selected Ten of the Upanishads and wrote his commentary, from the point of view of Adwaitam. Later came the Acharyals, Ramanujacharyar and Madhvar, who gave their commentaries to the same Ten Upanishads, from their point of view of Visishtadwaitam and Dwaitam. To remember these ten Upanishads, there is a slokam making a string of the names of these Upanishads. " Easa-Kena-Katha-Prasna-Munda-Maandookya-Thiththiri I Aithareyam cha Chandokyam Brhadaranyakam Dasa II " Adi Sankara has written his Bhashyam in the same order as in that slokam.

225. In this, Easa is Easawasyopanishad. It comes in the Sukhla Yajur Veda, and starts with the words 'Easawasyam' and so is named accordingly. Kenopanishad, similarly, starts with the word, 'Kena' and derives the name from the first word. The very first sentence in 'Easawasya Upanishad' says, "Every bit of this whole world is under the control and suzerainty of Easwara. So give up and you can enjoy it all. Do not covet. As after all, whose is all this wealth?" (Evidently not yours, till your oneness with Him is realized!)

226. A child looks at a toy of an elephant and thinks of it to be an elephant only. Grown ups will know it to be wood, that though it looks like an elephant. For the child, the wood is hidden and the animal is the only thing seen. For the grown up, the animal is hidden and only the wood is seen! The whole world is a toy made of the wood of 'Paramatma'. We should know it to be made of 'Paramatma' while looking at the world. Thirumoolar says, "maraththai maraithathu maamada yaanai, maraththil marandadu maamada yaanai; Paraththai maraithathu paar mudak bootham, paraththil maraindadu paarmudal bootham."

227. Looking only at the five constituent variations of Space, Air, Water, Fire and Earth, we tend to forget the basic cause of all existance, the Paramatma. We should get over this forgetfulness, and look at all seen objects as an expression of the same Paramatma Swaroopam. As though repeating the very words of Thirumoolar, Adi Sankara says, "...thandini thaaru vikaare...", '...tree in disguise of an elephant...'. I am not getting into discussion of the 'endless loop' of which one came first! For the great souls, only 'paramatma swaroopam' will be visible.

228. 'Kena' is Kenopanishad. It occurs in Saama Veda, in Jaimini Saakai, in Talavakara Brahmanam. So, it has a name as 'Talavakaara Upanishad' also. There is a saying in Tamil, to mean that if you have lost something, you should search for it in Kena Upanishad. Looking at the 'Paramatma Roopa', the Devatas, due to their pride, could not locate or identify, the head or tail of what they were looking at. Then Parasakthi Herself gave Gnaana Upadesa to Indra. It is Her Upadesa that is the content of the Upanishad. For this Upanishad, Adi Sankara has given two explanatory notes, which is a rare and unique honour and indicates how much He valued the message of this Upanishad! One of the Bhashyam is word by word and the other is sentence by sentence. In Soundarya Lahari, with this Upanishad in mind, Acharyal says, "Mother, Your golden feet which has been kept on the Head of Veda Mata, may please be rested on my head too." Similar to Vedantam, the Upanishads also have names such as, 'Veda Siras and Sruthi Siras'. Siras means head. In Tamil, it is 'Thalai or Mudi'. So, Upanishads are not only the end of Vedas, as Vedanta; but they are also the Head of the Vedas. Ambal's feet on Veda Mata's Head, means Upainishad only. It is in Kenopanishad that Ambal comes as Gnanambika. It is Saama Veda Upanishad, exactly justifying the Lalitha Sahasranama Mantra, "...Saamagaana priya...".

229. We look at any thing, say. The seen is the 'object'. The seer is the 'subject'. We can look at our own body. It is an object. This is my hand, my leg, my body. They are the objects. I am the subject. I am not my body or any part of my body! How to know this subject? If I can know it, then it also becomes an object! There has to be something the Subject. How to know this, I or Me or Myself, without 'objectifying' it?! As the Subject, we can experience it as ourselves and not know it as something else. But, to know it and analyse it, something other than it, has to be there! The moment you do that, it is not us anymore, but that which is known. What can that be in us, which can be different to ourselves? Other than Atma, what can be that which can know the Atma? Nothing! So, though we are using the words, 'Atma Gnanam', 'Atma Anubuthi', quite fluently, it is not a case of a Subject knowing an Object! In Kandar Anubuthi, Arunagirinathar says, "...thannan thani ninrathu than ariya, innam oruvarku isaivippaduvo?...", meaning, 'to stand as yourself, you may know, but, can you inform that to anybodyelse?' So Kenopanishad says that, somebody who claims that He knows, does not know! The somebody who is in a state of not knowing, knows! The one who thinks that he knows, does not know and the one who thinks that he knows not, knows! What a paradox! There is a Tamil saying for this too, "kandavar vindilar; vindavar kandilar!" meaning, 'the seer did not speak, and the speaker did not see!'. Other than the normal meaning, it also conveys that, the eyes which saw did not speak; and the mouth which spoke did not see! The life force in the background, call it what you want, is the one which saw and spoke!

(Next is the 'Katopanishad'. To be continued.)




Post a Comment

<< Home