Monday, July 12, 2010

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 39 (Vol #4) Dated 11 July 2010.

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 39 (Vol #4) Dated 11 July 2010.

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by Periyaval of Kanchi Kamakoti 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 proceeding from the last para on page number 225 of Vol 4 of the Tamil original. The readers are reminded that herein 'man/he' includes 'woman/she' too, mostly. These e-mails are all available at updated constantly)

286. “Because of the division of the society in to four castes, there was no unity among the people. That too, since especially the majority were the down trodden fourth caste of Pariah-s, they were the most disgruntled lot lacking motivation. That is why the nation repeatedly losing its will to survive, has subjugated itself to foreign yoke!” This is a totally untruthful canard created by historians of British origin! In fact the reality was the exact opposite! However much you may twist the history, truth can never be hidden forever, when many events occur to the contrary!
289. From the very Indian History written by the Britishers, what is discerned is that, during the periods when ‘VarNa Ashrama dharma’ was religiously being followed, the country was being governed by such able rulers to deserve to be called powerful empires! Those were the times when Indian Unity and cultural influence was most pronounced! Those are the times when foreign interference was least. Contrary to this when the local power passed into the hands of such people who were against the Vedas and were followers of the so called Ahimsa Religions, it was then that the social fabric was tattered, national unity placed in jeopardy, smaller scattered rulers came to power, paving the way for foreign invasion and occupation!
290. What was indirectly discernible in the books of history written by the Britishers, became apparent when after our gaining independence from the British rule, Indian historians like Dr.K.M.Munshi rewrote the Indian History! Munshi was not a conservative Brahmin like me. He very much was interested in reforming the Indian society on the modern lines. As a minister under Jawaharlal Nehru, he was as forward looking as any politicians of those days. He could not have been simply siding with conservatism at all! But his aim was to get to the truth as it was before the British incursion into India and the Muslims prior to that.
291. Till Chandragupta was the Chakravarti (Emporer), the Mourya dynasty was continuously growing and going from strength to strength, it was truly living by Varna Ashrama Dharma. Then after Asoka seriously embraced Buddhism, it went to pieces. It changed hands to the control of ‘Sagars’ or Scythians, Parthians, Kushans and many other uncivilized foreigners! Then came Pushya Mitra Sanga who did Ashwa Medha Yagna, followed by Samudra Gupta. Then the Vedic reign of Varna Ashrama Dharma was at its peak during the time when Chandragupta Vikrama Aditya was at the helm of affairs! (The earlier Chandragupta was a Mourya and this one was from the Gupta dynasty.) Pointing out these facts, Munshi clearly reiterated that Varna Ashrama Dharma was responsible for unity and integrity as well as the peaks of the cultural achievements in arts, crafts, fine-arts and literature!
292. “This is my work; this will not only sustain me but also protect me! I will achieve the finest in this line that is my profession!” This was the assured pride and spirit of these periods. There was competition within comrades, unity within relations and mutual respect between castes! This was a powerful force in the nation that went beyond the confines of parochialism and regionalism in to universal brotherhood that could proclaim to the whole world messages of love, compassion and respect for all life forms! This was and even now is the force that could bring the whole humanity together! The Buddhist and Jain messages of NirvaNa and Kaivalyam while being ideas beyond human comprehension, Rama and Krishna as role models of high aristocracy with a human touch, with which we could relate; Hanuman as a monkey God and Ganesha as an Elephant God with a hamster on which he rides; with principles such as universal justice, practical objection to cruelty, love towards all life forms with morality as the binding force amongst all humans; could and did build brick by brick moral edifices of lasting value systems!
293. I read an extract of Munshi’s writing in a news paper. In it he had shown as to how it is incorrect to assume tha Harsha Vardhana as a follower of Buddhism, raised and established a huge empire. The great poet Baana in his enthusiasm has praised his patron sky high alright! This may be due to the fact that his book Harsha Charitram did become famous, thus leading to this mistaken notion! Compared with the earlier Gupta period, Harsha’s empire was much smaller. Unlike the longevity of the Gupta dynasty before him, when they were true followers of the Hindu way of life, the moment Harsha died, his empire folded up almost!
294. When Varna Ashrama arrangement was not strong enough, the society scattered in all directions like a bag full of goose berries, with nothing holding them together! India was forever an attractive target for aspiring greedy eyes. With these two factors the kings who were leaning towards Buddhism and Jainism were aware of the inherent drawback in applying Ahimsa that is abjuring resort to arms, as a national policy! So, these kings did help these religions to establish themselves in a big way, they still continued to fight wars and were supportive of Hindus maintaining Varna Ashrama Dharma! There was an overall decline in standards though, the various castes continued in their traditional ways, as supported by the powers in being.
295. I hope you understand as to how wrong it is to say that Brahmins were thrusting the Varna Dharma discipline down the throats of unwilling population and that is why outsiders could get a foot-hold in to our lands! After Asoka, when the Mourya Empire was no more, in the South, it was a Brahmin who brought the people together under the Saatawahana Empire and established a Hindu Saamrajya in Deccan covering parts of Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Andhra and northern districts of what is Tamil Nadu today! In these matters we should guard against flippant untruthful statements that could poison people’s minds. That is why I am saying all this!
296. Adwaitam and Arasangam, i.e., Governance. Like the untruth about this statement that Varna Dharma was the reason for the division of this country, let me break another similar canard being bandied about! It is something like this! “Because Sankara propounded the theory of Adwaita and declared this world as a ‘Maya’, the Hindus have become good for nothing people without any direction and purpose. This is the reason for the ease with which the country was brought under foreign yoke!” Sankara never meant that the concept of Adwaita and Maya were to become common parlance to be quoted flippantly. The common man was to go through the paths of Karma (action) and Bhakti (devotion) and work towards taking care of family and society, while internally working towards maturity. The doctrines of Adwaita and Maya were thus to be understood and comprehended as the end points of Vedanta! This can be proved by quoting some inalienable historical facts of three staunch practitioners of Adwaita.
297. What I am going to say now are pure and simple historical truths. The three persons that I am going to talk about were all Brahmin Adwaitins. Each one of them was responsible in his own way for the establishment of three different Empires! Amongst them one was a Brhmachari, another a Householder and the third a Sanyasi!
(To be continued.)



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