Tuesday, November 09, 2010

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 98 (Vol #4) Dated 08 Nov 2010

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 98 (Vol #4) Dated 08 Nov 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 middle of page number 545 of Vol 4 of the Tamil original. The readers may note that here in 'man/he' includes 'woman/she' too mostly. These e-mails are all available at http://Advaitham.blogspot.com updated constantly)
50. Love & Devotion. As the bad actions can be compensated by good actions, negative evil thoughts have to be erased by positive good thoughts. Love comes in here. Love in reciprocation is rather a deal. More like the give and take of the business environment, called ‘levaa devi’ in Hindi. Of all good thoughts Love is the best! This should be directed towards all living things and living beings and even seemingly non living things! For all the animate and inanimate things of life the basic substratum is the divine fountainhead of God! That love of God is devotion or Bhakti, which is not only saying your prayers but, expressed as unconditional universal love towards all! Without the basic love towards God all other forms of love are somehow a bit of a sham! Devotion to God is the only way of overcoming the false compulsions of the mind!
51. That is, the mind stands back and gets all the jobs done through the body. Whatever are the inter-connecting ties so created are the ones that will be loosened or got rid of by our good actions. But the mind’s self created ties will go only by Bhakti. Bhakti is also a bhavana or a thought by the mind only! But exactly as the good actions of sat karma loosen the ties of bad actions; in the matter of this attitudinal bhavana of Bhakti, it has the power to undo the ties created by bad thoughts of self indulgence, exploitation, gratification and such! When the attitude of Bhakti matures and fruitions, God will grant that, “This devotee of mine has had enough! He may not continue to suffer the pangs of separation any further and so let him experience the bliss of oneness by being relieved of the tyranny of the mind!” To be scattered is the nature of the mind! Peace of mind is an impossible utopia! So, it is necessary to first bring it within a set of parameters of control of thought. That is why priority has been given in the Saastraas to Karma Marga before attempting any other methods such as meditation!
52. The under current behind all Karma as per Saastraas are Good thoughts. Karma does not finish only with action. There is also the good and bad influence of our actions on our minds. Because, we do not do actions simply as though by automatons, without the influence of thoughts, before, during and after our actions! Though the actions are prominently seen, behind every action there is the thought or intention first and then later responses, reactions and after effects! Generally speaking, most of our actions thus are driven by our desires and passions, love and hate! Repeated such actions have corroded and rusted our very being that, to be able to subjectively analyse this very process of cleansing oneself, we need to make ourselves worthy of it! That very thought of turning the corner, that we should turn the corner, is rare indeed. When we are deeply involved with the society, to cause a clean break from the past is difficult. When we do so, that we should do so after having done full justice to our social responsibilities itself is a thought only. Through that, the society and the world at large should benefit intrinsically is the loving intention behind the ‘Swa Dharma Karmas as per the Saastraas’!
53. Clear Integration and Lessening of Scattering in Satkarma. When you do Satkarma, that is actions such as daily Pooja such as Sandya Vandanam, meditation and related activities such as celebration of festivals and conduct of Homas and Yagnaas, there is a clear integration of the mind and individual faculties! Let us take the conduct of a Pooja. “Now we should do Archana with Tulasi leaves or Bilva leaves. Now we should kindle the lamp. Without stumbling and scattering the assembled material and people, we should now perambulate around the Yagna Kund.” Such thoughts making us do those things with discipline bring in, focussing of minds and faculties!
54. Point to note here is that since our actions are related to these small and simple thoughts, complicated confusions are automatically avoided! The mind is not permitted to run away to unrelated other thoughts. You know as to how if permitted this mind is capable of running from pillar to post and from Niagara to Timbuktu! Instead the mind is amongst the few thoughts related to the simple Pooja being carried out. So more than anything else, by these simple acts we are training the mind to accept discipline. Though not complete, some control evolves. Without any work, lying in the bed, we are not able to concentrate this mind of ours on any one subject. Not only that the mind thinks of one subject and or its related areas; in a tearing hurry, it runs away to totally unconnected things, events, places and concepts! But, when you get involved in work, the mind stops at the thoughts related to that work in hand. When you sit down to meditate say, look how the mind goes to totally unrelated meaningless meanderings! Many come and complain to me about such things. Comparatively, when you sit down to do Pooja and start the preparatory work, from then onwards the scattering of the mind is controlled to a large extent.
55. Not only in Pooja. Even while playing cards or doing the Cross Words or the Sudoku puzzle, the mind does get concentrated on the work at hand! A child with a noticeable lack of attention will be seen to evince much concentration while playing a game of chance or skill. Its’ mind gets so absorbed that when the mother offers some candy or snack, the child either ignores her or says, “Nnnnnno! Not nowwwww!” The Karmas as laid by the Saastraas achieve two good aims. One, they turn us towards good actions. Two, they prevent us from all bad thoughts, intensions and actions. When the eye is focussed on the action, the mind becomes a thing of secondary importance. The mind also benefits thus by these actions by not being involved in wrong things. What is clear to us at our level is that, when we are involved in ‘Sat Karya’, whether we are made to have good thoughts or not; while being prevented from nursing malicious intentions, we are certainly saved from doing any heinous actions!
56. Karya & Dhyana – Action & Meditation. Let us say that we are cleaning up the areas of the ‘Praahaara’ (that is the Go-around), inside the premises of a Temple. Temple is such a place where the very Omniscient, Omnipotent and Omnipresent God is considered to reside in a small icon for the sake of us who are ignorant of His permeability of every iota of existence. There, by cleaning up the environs, we are achieving cleansing of our own minds! If all the people of the city or town join hands for such an action; they can have the idea that there will be more cohesion and erasing of hate in the society as a result. But, since there is a job to be done, this alone cannot contribute to complete one pointed concentration! For the complete one pointed concentration, job at hand is a hurdle only! This point has to be accepted. To a large extent action will enable us to concentrate our minds and effort in achieving unity and integrity. But, it will still remain short of ‘Aikaagrata’, that is ‘One Pointedness’ of mind! The moment there is an action preceded by a thought, there is two-pointedness immediately! That is Dwaitam! The moment there can be two, there could be many also!
57. (PeriyavaaL now enacts a single act play in which he is depicting all the cast on the stage! Now follows the conversation.)
“OK. So, as said just now, I agree that there is no need to do any unnecessary work, just for achieving one-pointedness of the mind! So, to do so, I will sit down for Dhyanam without any work!”
“OK. Sit down and see for yourself! Get rid of the broom also. Sit down like that only and do meditation for some time!”
................................After a few minutes of silence....................................
“What? Are you doing Dhyana or not? Or, did I disturb you by asking you some questions?”
“No. Swami! You have not disturbed me. That Dhyana itself got disturbed. It is not even correct to say that it got disturbed. First of all, I never got going! I could not concentrate my mind at all. May be for a second or two, I was silently thinking of God. It was peaceful when the mind seemed to get concentrated like the rain clouds in the sky! So, it came to my mind that Devotion and Meditation are superior to any work related activity. This is superior and Karma is inferior. Then let me tell you the truth. It occurred to me as to why this PeriyavaaL who came to talk about Adwaitam, is ever telling us to do Karma all the time? He is telling us to catch hold of the Karma like the grieved party and cry! Why does he do so? That is what my mind was saying. Then he quotes Adi Sankara and Sri Krishna Paramatma, to support his argument! Why should there be so much of a chasm between the ideal and practical?”
“Then Swami! I continued to think as to why, saying that our aim as a Nation is Ghandeeyam, why are we going in for so much industrialization and opening so many factories and expanding our Army? Then I thought about politics, election and whom should I give my vote to! Then I even thought of those riff-raff parties and cursed their leaders. Then finally it came to my mind that instead of cleaning up the Praahaaram, I had sat down to do meditation!”
“Now, it is just sad that we let so much of dirt accumulate in our own mind within a short time! Action or Karyam to clean the Temple premises with a broom and physical labour is by far superior to any meditation! Even if we do not achieve one pointedness at least it would have saved us from letting the mind running from pillar to post! OK. Enough of the meditation! Let us get up and do some work. Having told PeriyavaL with all that pride that I will do Meditation, I am slightly ashamed of myself! Let me at least tell him that I have failed! May be the nobility of the initial decision to clean up the Temple premises, has given me the courage to speak the truth! As I thought on these lines, Swami, you also called me!”
(To be continued.)



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