Wednesday, October 16, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 52 (Vol # 7) Dated 16 Oct 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 52 (Vol # 7) Dated 16 Oct 2013

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavãL 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 the middle of page No 425 of Volume 7 of the Tamil original. The readers may note that herein ‘man/he’ includes ‘woman/she’ too mostly. These e-mails are all available at updated continually)

11.           Satva – Rajas – Tamas Explained.  Let us understand these three qualities found in all human beings and animals too.  Satva – 'सत्व' is the quality of a person without any confusion of the mind, peaceful, calm and quiet while being full of love towards all others, at all times without any agitation or tearing hurry.  At the same time such a person is not lazy or sleepy, fully aware of his surroundings and taking full care of his duties and responsibilities.  Rajas – 'रजस्' is the quality in a person bubbling with desire and anger, seemingly full of energy over-flowing and 'ready to burst at the drop of a hat', so to say!  Tamas – 'तमस्' is the quality of laziness, uninterested in doing anything other than going back to sleep.  Being tardy, procrastination is their pet attitude though desire and anger will be simmering inside.  The first quality of Satva is pure and clean, the other two of Rajas and Tamas both are dirty and repulsive.  Though at times, it may seem as though Rajas being dynamic, is more acceptable.  But as desire and anger are the two main motivators of Rajas, one ends up doing many things which was never sincerely and truly intended!

12.          All food from animals, birds and fish as the source, such as flesh, blood and body parts, normally cause Rajasic and Tamasic tendencies in the consumer.  Cow's milk is from animal source only, like the blood of the animal.  Such a thing to be used as food seems to be against vegetarianism and likely to cause harm to a person interested in developing his Satva GuNa qualities.  But our Sãstrãs have not only allowed or permitted but prescribed Cow's Milk as the diet for the recluse, renouncing Sanyãsi who is to remain totally Sãtvic till he is fully rid of the mind and qualities!  If such an item as milk that is, normally equivalent to flesh and blood from any other animal, can be rendered so pure and precious by the cow, think of its divineness!

Refuge of Universal Love
13.          There are two aspects or requirements of a Sanyãsi's food.  First that it should be enabling the growth of the quality of Satva in him.  Secondly it should have been obtained causing no harm whatsoever to any living being as, he is to live by the guideline of 'Ahimsa Paramo Dharma:' – 'अहिंसा परमो धर्म:' – both these two requirements are met with by the cow's milk!  Through its milk the cow instils the quality of Satva.  In taking its milk, there is no cruelty caused to the cow and there is no denial of milk for the calf either.  In fact the cowherd is required to leave enough in its udders as required for the calf, which he gets to know by practice.  That is why amongst all mammals conveniently, it is the cow which has the capability to produce more milk.  In fact if the calf drinks all the milk at any one time, it will start vomiting!  What is the inference drawn?  Though the cow secretes milk as part of the post-delivery lactation for its calf, it is God's intention that it should be nourishing the human beings also, isn't it?  So, Go the Cow has been given an exalted position, to be able to display the Love of the Mother for all people in addition to her own off-spring, as not given to any other mammal. 

14.          Thus the Cow is really God in that form, though seemingly a 'Vayilla Jivan' of the animal world, she is a true proponent of Universal Love.  So, the 'Go Mãtã' is in fact, 'Sri Mãtã' in that form.  When she is the 'wish fulfilling Cow', she is the 'Kãmadenu'.  All mammals feed their off-spring with milk.  She as Kãmadenu is a progeny of the 'pãrkadal' – 'பாற்கடல்', the Ocean of Milk!  It is Sri Mãtã herself who came as Kãmadenu, the Go Mãtã.  That is what the Mooka Kavi tells Kãmãkshi in Panchasatee, saying, 'You be and are our Kãmadenu' – 'kãmadughã bhava kamala kãmakale Kãmakoti kãmãkshi' – 'कामदुघा भव कमला कामकले कामकोटि कामाक्षी', in the 49th sloka of Ãryã Sadakam of Panchasatee. 

'Cow's Dung is Also Ultra Clean and Sacred'
15.          What are seemingly opposites, come together in the Cow quite naturally.  Its blood like milk expressed from its body, instead of spoiling the mind cleanses it while being nourishing for our bodies.  One more meeting of opposites is the fact that its dung known as 'Gomayam or SãNam' – 'गोमयं or சாணம்' is also a holistic purifier, disinfectant and sanctifier rolled into one!  It cleanses the heart, mind, body and the atmosphere.  Normally the excreta of all animals are dirty, smelly and a source of all sorts of infections and considered to be profane.  But this dung of the cow is an exception.  It does not stink bad but has a healthy and a divine smell. 

16.          Other than cleanliness and infection, the feces of other animals being unholy causing desecration, the cows dung the Gomayam, when mixed with water and sprinkled in the area is said to sanctify the place.  When food is served, what you eat once touched by the saliva of the person eating it is supposed to be 'echchil' – 'எச்சில்' in Tamil or 'uchchishtam' – 'उच्छिष्टं' in Sanskrit.  I am afraid that there is no exact translation though the nearest in meaning is the word 'spittle'.  Conceptually with 'echchil', there is no spitting necessarily involved.  If you have eaten in a plate, the plate and spoon are 'echchil' including the space of the table you have made use of.  That plate and spoon and the space on the table or ground where you have eaten, is cleaned with water to which some Gomayam is added.  Similarly as part of cleaning up, in the morning all the floors in the house are wiped clean with such a water and Gomayam. 

17.          So also outside the house at the entrance, the area is swept and then this mix of water and Gomayam is sprinkled, on which they used to make Rangoli, that is draw designs with rice powder coloured differently, which was a welcome sign for visitors.   Not only human visitors, it was also an invitation for 'Arogya Lakshmi' and 'Sowmangalya Lakshmi' that is, Goddess Lakshmi as the benefactor who gives us health and overall beneficence.  In the name of fashion and modernisation, all such habits have gone by default and are being virtually forgotten!

18.          There are many evidences to this belief that the Cow's dung is considered as a disinfectant as well as a purifier-sanctifier.  I will give one example.  There are people of the order of Sanyãsa belonging to a particular sect, who very strictly abide with the restriction that they are not to have anything to do with fire of any sort, for cooking or warming their own selves in cold climate.  But among them also there are some who make use of flat cakes made of cow dung and dried in the sun to light up a fire.  They believe that food cooked in it is acceptable because of the extreme sanctity of anything from the cow!  However, within India that too locally in the South, there has been an impression in the minds of the people that, these die-hard followers of Sãstrãs are the only ones who believe in the so called cleansing and sanctifying powers of this dung of the cow due to their blind beliefs!  But recently I hear that scientists in atheistic Russia have experimented and certified the disinfectant and anti-pollutant properties of the smoke when dried cakes made of cow-dung are burnt!

Bhopal Tragedy & an Interesting Side-Light
19.           Very surprisingly I noticed a news item printed in big capital letters in all the newspapers, when the      Bhopal Gas-Leak tragedy took place in which thousands of people and all animals died or were afflicted with all sorts of unheard of diseases; there was one household in the thick of it all which escaped totally unaffected!  It was a place where people were assembled but were covered by the vapours and smoke emanating from 'Agnihotra' rituals. (I hope you understand that in households where they do follow the 'Agnihotra' ritual, there are three sets of Homa Kund which are maintained continuously burning with such materials as is offered in oblations in fire, to appease and satisfy the Gods.)  The people who were assembled in that place survived and were saved from the ill effects of Gas-Leak Tragedy in Bhopal!

20.          But it would not be correct to give all the credit to only Gomayam.  Yes it is an effective anti-dote to poisonous fumes, but the importance should be given to the divine ritual done with proper Mantras known as Agnihotra as a Vedic Karma.  Evidently in this situation the potency of the Gomayam as a counter to poison, has been reinforced by the power of the Mantras chanted and the fact that instead of just Japa, the oblations were being done in fire, further added and corroborated to, by the use of various other materials exactly as given in the Sãstrãs; put together must have had the salubrious effect on the assembled, that while all over Bhopal people were dying in thousands by the leakage of the poisonous gas; people assembled in this particular household were saved!  Anyhow, Gomayam has had an important role to play evidently and undeniably!  Evidently Gomayam adds and corroborates the purification powers of the Mantras.  Please note that it is not the custom to add any cleansing agents or detergents in the Yagnya!
(To be continued.)




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