Tuesday, March 11, 2014

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 118 (Vol # 7) Dated 11 Mar 2014

 DEIVATHIN KURAL # 118 (Vol # 7) Dated 11 Mar 2014

(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 page No 897 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   http://Advaitham.blogspot.com updated continually)

15.          In the world of activity the immediate and the indirect cause for all such dynamism is Vishnu and hence all such actions should be offered or surrendered unto him only.  It is not as though the process of such 'ArpaNam' started during the life time of our ÃchãryãL, but it has been an age old custom to do so as taught by the Sãstrãs from time immemorial:-
"kãyena vãchã manasa indriyair vã  
"कायेनवाचा मनसेन्द्रियैर्वा
budhyãtmanã vã prakrute: swabhãvãt |
बुध्यात्मना वा प्रकृते: स्वभावात् |
karomi yad yat sakalam parasmai
करोमि यद्यत सकलं परस्मै
nãrãyaNãyeti samarpayãmi ||
नारायणायेति समर्पयामि ||

16.          Action is not only that done by the body.  It includes thoughts of the mind and logical analysis by the intellect, happenings due to natural tendencies and habits, intended and unintended; are all actions, including breathing!  Except the state of Samãdhi all other states are action only.  So, the meaning of the sloka is, "Whatever I may do urged, instigated or motivated by nature, habit, body [including the gross and subtle body parts and senses], mind and intellect,  all that I am surrendering unto NarãyaNa as my humble offering."  As I told you that Siva lives in the heart of NarayaNa and that NarayaNa resides in the heart of Siva, they are equally valid as the two sides of the same coin.  Siva and Vishnu as one are symbolically represented by Sankara-NarayaNa as one form in a place known as Sankara-NãrãyaNan-Kovil in Thirunelveli.

17.          ÃchãryãL himself has made use of this name 'Sankara-NãrãyaNan' at a very important juncture.  He has written a treatise known as 'Prasna-Uttara-Ratna-Mãlikã', covering all the questions likely to arise in a discerning student's mind, with its answers like a golden necklace in-laid with gems.  In it, towards the end in the penultimate but one sloka he asks, "Who is it that is called Bhagawan and Maheshwara?  Instead of taking any individual name of Siva or Vishnu, without treading on anybody's toes, our Adwaita ÃchãryãL of total equity and equanimity is making use of these very two words of Sankara-NãrãyaNa, instead of Siva-Vishnu or Hari-Hara.  The question is 'kascha bhagawan mahesha:' – 'क: + च = कश्च भगवान् महेश:' and the answer is 'sankaranãrãyaNãtmeika:' – 'संकरनारायणात्मैक:' meaning, 'the unity and oneness of Sankara and NãrãyaNa, is what is referred as Bhagawan Mahesha'!  So it is in the rightness of things that, that other Sankara, that is our ÃchãryãL also is taking the name of NãrãyaNa specially.  The main point is that the principal doctrine is pointed out as 'NãrãyaNa' to which all other's obeisance should also accrue.  Thus he has made an easy (but, not so easy) way of doing so, to let all expressions of respect go to NarãyaNa. 

All Namaskãrãs go to Him –  NãrãyaNa only
18.          NãrãyaNa having created and established the whole seen and unseen universe and arranged for their sustenance and the power to be and function, he has every right to receive all regards and respect, as it is said in the Sandya Vandana Mantra towards the end, that as all the waters falling on earth go to the same ocean, all Namaskãrãs wherever to whomsoever go to that one destination, 'ãkãsãt patitam toyam yadã gatchati sãgaram, sarvadeva namaskãra: keshavam pratigatchati' – 'आकाशात पतितं तोयं यदा गच्छति सागरं, सर्वदेव नमस्कार: केशवं प्रतिगच्छति'!  That Keshava is none other than NãrãyaNa, a name of Vishnu, particularly of Sri Krishna, as it occurs in the 23rd and 648th Nãmas of Vishnu Sahasranãma for which our ÃchãryãL has given a number of meanings.  Among them we are immediately concerned with the meaning as per which, it is a name as a combination of the letters, 'ka + a + easa + va = Keshava.  The letter 'ka' is for Brhma the Creator, 'a' is for Vishnu the Manager cum Governor and 'easa' is for Easwara.  The three put together make the Trimoorthi or Trinity.  Above them also he who as the Paramãtma cum Parãshakti Swaroopa, keeping all this under his control that is the one inclusive principle 'Keshava', the one idea of what is God and that power in being is called NãrãyaNa.  So when we say that 'sarva deva namaskãra: kesavam pratigachchati', all the prayers and respects expressed by anybody including all the Devas, go to that one Keshava / NarãyaNa only.  When all the salutations of all the Gods go to him, can the regards and respects expressed by human beings be retained by us mortals?  All this go to him only, to NarãyaNa.

19.          This is what we Sanyãsis do, remembering that all such salutations go to him, instead of misappropriating them we redirect them to the correct addressee like a good postman!  For this our ÃchãryãL has made an easy to follow procedure out of his infinite kindness.  That is, we are to say, 'NarãyaNa, NarãyaNa' twice whenever anybody does Namaskãra to us and that is the rule.  When we take his name at once we will remember as to who it is all due to, isn't it?  Here the addressee is God and what is his should not be wrongly appropriated by us.  Such a thought will be there immediately.  So our ÃchãryãL imposed this procedure known as 'SmaraN' – 'स्मरण', which is easy to do, but not necessarily so easy!

The True SmaraN
20.          To say the word 'NãrãyaNa' by way of the mouth is not SmaraN or SmaraNa.  That word 'SmaraNa' means to think of the word and the meaning and to say it whole heartedly.  Just to say by way of the mouth is not good enough.  But normally what happens is that, whether it is a Stotra or Mantra or whatever, we simply utter those words in a routine manner without imbibing the spirit behind it.  The mouth keeps muttering the words when the mind has gone elsewhere miles or eons away!  Here instead of bringing the NãrãyaNa Swaroopa in our mind's eyes, if we just mumble the words, it will be a great anathema.  If misappropriation of others' is a punishable offence amongst human beings, think of what a great sin it is to steal what actually belongs to God!  Unless he is ever watchful, since a Sanyãsi keeps getting these physical demonstrations of others respect and routinely he keeps mumbling this 'NãrãyaNa', he runs a big risk.  That is why, I said that it is an easy way, though it is not necessarily so!

True Sanyãsi & Namaskãra
21.          For a true Sanyãsi, if he is a hundred percent true, there is no duty to be performed, no rules and regulations.  So, he need not think of anybody's wellbeing or otherwise.  If he starts checking if those who receive his blessings have benefitted or not, and start thinking about like this in respect of so many others also, he will reconnect with the transactions of the world and become deeply involved once again!  In the process the wholesome attention that he is required to give to 'Ãtma Vichãra' will be adversely affected.  As per his Ãshrama, he is forever supposed to be constantly and continuously doing an analysis of the Self.  If he is not doing that, he is not a Sanyãsi either, in which case nobody needs to be doing Namaskãr to him.  A true Sanyãsi, when paid respects to by anybody, is supposed to think of the Aim of his Sãdhana, the Ãtma as NãrãyaNa the governing power of the dual world, conveying the Namaskãra to him with whatever the request or demand, (like so many of the relay stations for internet / communications towers dotting the surface of the earth all over the world nowadays).  Thinking, 'Good or bad please do whatever', he should be detaching his self, from the transaction.  About this, VidyãraNya Swami has spoken very clearly in his book, 'Jivan Mukti Viveka'.

22.          Using the word 'Brahmin' to mean someone who very clearly understands and comprehends Brhma Gnãna as a perfect Sanyãsi, there is a quotation in Maha Bhãratham about how a true Sanyãsi is 'one who does not receive any Namaskãrãs, does not initiate any project, nor gives any Asirvadam – ' nirãsisham anãrambam nirnamaskãram astutim' – 'निरासिषं अनारंबं निर्नर्मस्कारं अस्तुतिं'.  For a true Sanyãsi, everything is Ãtma Swaroopa only.  Then how can he do Namaskãra to himself or give blessings to himself, right?  To him, all those who do Namaskãra to him are seen as his own self.  But those who do that are not thinking about all this and do Namaskãra because he is seen to be respectable and venerable.  They expect that he will give them his blessings and his blessings are likely to be more powerful and effective and hence they do Namaskãr to him.  Such being the case, if he sits there unconcerned receiving their obeisance, incapable of giving them any Asirvadam, won't they feel hurt in the bargain?  (Smilingly PeriyavãL continues.)  Only if he caters for their mentality and expectations, will his actions be acceptably OK isn't it?

23.          Having raised these questions, VidyãraNya Swami says that, 'It is in answer to these queries that it has been prescribed that when others do Namaskãr, he is supposed to say 'NarãyaNa' twice, instead of keeping quiet.  So as to say, that the 'NarãyaNa' Shabdam is representing all the blessings – 'nikila ãsirvãda pratiniditvena NarayaNa shabda prayoga:' – 'निकिल आशीर्वाद प्रतिनिदित्वेन नारायण शब्द प्रयोग:' as he has clarified.  Though he openly does not say "Best Wishes" or something like that, this 'NarãyaNa' shabdam is to ameliorate all his sorrows.   More than anything else this will counter more effectively the greater sorrow of 'worldly involvement' of all those who do Namaskãr to a Sanyãsi, as clarified by VidyãraNya Swami.

Matãdipathy Sanyãsi and Namaskãram
24.          This is meant for 100 percent Sanyãsi-s only.  In anything there are different gradations as good, bad and indifferent, isn't it?  So also amongst us Sanyãsi-s too there are instead of fully true Sanyãsi-s, some half-Sanyãsi-s.  (Saying this, PeriyavãL laughs for long.  Not a violent guffaw, but a controlled gushing.)  May be even a half-Sanyãsi is a little too much.  Half would mean 50%, isn't it?  May be you could call us 'pass-mark Sanyãsi-s'.  When people do Namaskãr to us, can we just set them aside as meant for 'NarãyaNa' and keep ignoring it?  Let me clarify as to, whom did I refer to as 'pass-mark Sanyãsi-s'.  I told you that a Sanyãsi has no duty whatsoever, other than SmaraNa of Ãtma Vichãra.  Having set aside all duties towards a family of a wife and children, he has no responsibilities towards the society either.  So he is to push the Namaskãra also to NarãyaNa and keep quiet only. 

25.          But, we who sit around as a Matãdipathy of a Matam with Guru Peetam, it is them whom I referred to as the 'pass-mark Sanyãsi-s', differentiating them from the 100% Sanyãsi-s.  The day we assumed the position of a Matãdipathy, we have undertaken a whole lot of responsibilities as duties.  A big responsibility towards the general public we have, to think of them all as our Sishyas and to guide them on the right path.  So, we just cannot sit around unconcerned as that will be a big failure in the conduct of our duties.  We have to think that the followers must benefit spiritually and progress.  When the ardent followers come and physically demonstrate their sincerity and devotion by Namaskãra we are not to remain unconcerned, just passing it on to the 'higher-up to do whatever'. 

26.          I am telling you to bring funds for projects such as, 'Veda SamrakshaNam', repair and re-construction of dilapidated temples and such.  Daily I am accepting your contributions in the form of 'Bikshã Vandana'.  I am asking you to collect a handful of rice from each family every day in the 'Pidi Arisi Dittam'.  I am asking you to organise dredging and cleaning up of temple ponds and other water sources in villages for the ease and comfort of the cattle.  Having demanded and taken your money and physical labour, at the time when you do Namaskãra, if I sit around unconcerned, that will not be justifiable at all!    

(To be continued.)




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