The Most Visited Articles in the Month of July 2012 in the Order as Listed Below.
Bhagavad-Gita: 18 Chapters in Sanskrit
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bhargo devasya dhīmahi
dhiyo yonah prachodayāt
We adore That Light.
We meditate on the Divine Splendor.
May He (She) inspire our intelligence.
ॐ भूर्भुवः स्वः ।
तत् सवितुर्वरेण्यं ।।
भर्गो देवस्य धीमहि ।
धियो यो नः प्रचोदयात् ।।
Balaji Temple Bridgewater N.J Dated July 14, 2017
Sunday July 16, 2017
Gayatri Yagnam with chanting of Gayatri Mantram 1008 times
Gayantam Trayate Iti Gayatri
It will protect all those who chant it, hence, the name Gayatri
All Moola mantras culminate with Gayatri Mantra. Gayatri means Surya Tejam. By means of Gayatri Mantra, we meditate on that Supreme Divine who is the embodiment of knowledge and light. We thereby aspire, "May The Supreme Divine enlighten our intellect and guide us on the right path". Goddess Gayatri is prevalent more as Upasana Devata than Aaradhya Devata. Reciting (Japam) mantra is Upasana and the more Japam that is performed, the more benefits that are received.
Agni Mukhavai Devaaha
Agni is called the face and mouth of all Devathas
Na Gayatrayaha Partin Mantram
Gayatri Mantram is superior to all the Mantras
Devatas are elated when a Homam is performed in Agni while chanting Gayatri Mantram. This is Gayatri Yagnam. If performed alone (Sadhana), it benefits the individual. If performed together (Sāmuhika), it bestows welfare for both the individual and the world or society at large.
A non-denominational Mantra for all times, regions, religions, beliefs, races, creeds, colors, nationalities....
If you are a Hindu, that Light is the sun, Brahman, Gayatri Devi; a Jew, Adonai; Christian, the Lord; Muslim, Allah. For the Hindu, the image is Gayatri Devi; for the Jew, Christian and Muslim it is the Light of lights. There is no religious accretion in Gayatri Mantra.
Jewish tradition sun was formed on the 4th
day of creation on March 26, 3760 BCE.
NYTimes: "According to the
celestial calculations of a Talmudic sage named Shmuel, at the outset of
spring every 28 years, the sun moves into the same place in the sky at the
same time and on the same day of the week as it did when God made it. This
charged moment provides the occasion for reciting a
one-line blessing of God, “who makes the work of creation.”
That day is April 8, 2009; the previous ones were April 28, 1953, April 28, 1981. The next one will occur on April 8, 2037.
Jewish Year 5769: sunset September 29, 2008 - nightfall October 1, 2008
Birkat Hachama (ברכת החמה, "Blessing of the Sun") refers to a Jewish blessing that is recited on the Sun once every twenty-eight years, when the vernal equinox as calculated by tradition falls on a Tuesday at sundown. Wikipedia.
It appears that Jews pay homage to the sun once every 28 years, while Hindus pay homage everyday.
Here is the Gayatri Mantra of the Hindus paying homage to the sun.
Oṃ bhūr-bhuvaḥ-svaḥ tatsavitur vareṇyaṃ bhargo devasya dhīmahi dhiyo yonaḥ pracodayāt
Meditation on Gayatri
मुक्ता-विद्रुम हेम धवलच्छायैर्मुखस्त्रीक्षणै-
hema dhavalac-chāyair mukhais-tryakṣaṇair,
śubhram kapālam guṇam
I meditate on the (five-faced) Goddess Gayatri whose faces are of the hues of the pearl, coral, gold, black and white (stones) of three eyes (in each face), with jeweled diadems set with the crescent moon, composed of syllables representing the real Truth, and holding in the (ten) hands, the poses of offering refuge and boons, goad, whip, white skull, rope, conch, discus and two lotuses. Translation by Sadguru Sant Keshavadas.
Gayatri Devi: Credit: GangesIndia.com
Gāyatrī = Gāya + Trī.
Gāya is derived from Ga (singing, page 352 Monier Williams Sanskrit Dictionary);
Trī = Female defender.
Tra = Trā = male defender, page 457.
Gāya = song; Gāyak = singer; Gāyan = singing
Gāyatrī / Gayatri = Song that protects; Gayatri Devi is the protector.
Gayatri = A Vedic Meter, three feet and 24 syllables long; Gayatri Devi
Line one: Tat Savitur Vareṇiyaṃ
Tat Sa vi tur Va re ṇi yaṃ = 8 syllables
Second line: Bhargo Devasya Dhīmahi
Bhar go De va sya Dhī ma hi = 8 syllables
Third line: Dhiyo yonaḥ pracodayāt
Dhi yo yo naḥ pra co da yāt = 8 syllables
Tirumular of Tirumantiram says the following in Verse 994 about 24-syllable Gayatri Mantra.
ஆறு எழுத்தால் ஆறு சமயங்கள்
ஆறுக்கு நாலே இருபத்து நாலு என்பர்
சாவித்திரியில் தலை எழுத்து ஒன்று உள
பேதிக்க வல்லார் பிறவி அற்றார்களே.
The six letters are the six Samayas (faiths). Six multiplied by four is 24, which are the syllables contained in Gayatri Mantra. The leading head of the Mantra is Om. They who know the true meaning of Pranava will for ever escape the round of birth.
Gayatri Mantra sung by Anuradha Paudwal with golden and silken voice.
Here is the link.
Please click on the following link, if you want to listen to the divine voice of Anuradha Paudwal sing a 22-minute rendition of Gayatri. Copy and paste if necessary.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cg4o3PAYjX8 (I prefer this rendition of The Gayatri Mantra.)
Bhagavan Krishna says in Bhagavd Gita (10.35) Of the hymns in Sama Veda (I am) Brhatsama; of meters, I am Gayatri; of months (I am) Margasirasa (Dec-Jan); of all seasons, I am flower-bearer (spring).
Gayatri Devi is endowed with five heads, ten eyes, and ten hands and sits on a red lotus. Because of Her many auspicious qualities and powers, She is One beyond compare and yet She is Brahma, Vishnu, Siva, Vedas and Goddess; thus She has five heads, ten eyes and ten hands, which hold weapons and accouterments of the said deities. The three eyes in each head are the sun, the moon, and the third eye. The all-knowing third eye when turned inside is for contemplation and meditation. When opened to outside, it brings destruction of evil. The Roman god of rising and setting sun Janus had only two faces to see forwards and backwards but Gayatri had five heads and five faces looking in all directions. Besides, imagine the computing power of five parallel processors!
There are five Devatas for worship: Brahma, Vishnu, Siva, Sakti, and Surya. (Ganesa replaced Brahma.) Brahma worship was abandoned by Narada's and Siva's curse; Ganesa, son of Siva and Avatara of Vishnu has taken his place of honor and worship. Gayatri Mantra has five attributes appended to Deva: Pervader of the universe (Vibhu), creator, Deva of worship, Deva at play, Inspirer of intelligence. Vaidika Gayatri:
Ombhur-bhuvah-svah tatsavitur varenyam bhargo devasya dhīmahi dhiyo yo nah prachodayāt— Om, earth, atmosphere, and heaven, we meditate on the adorable glory of the radiant sun; may he inspire our intelligence—translation by Dr. Radhakrishnan. Sakti forms the hypostasis for these five attributes. Gayatri depicts Sakti of Will, Sakti of Action, and Sakti of Knowledge in their full measures. Three Purusas and three of their female aspects, Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesvara, Brahmani, Vaishnavi, and Rudrani form the six tattvas in Gayatri Mantra. (insert: Brahma and Brahmani; exoticindia.com)
It is difficult to hold in mind all six tattvas at the same time. Devi forms the representative core of all six tattvas and worshipping her is equal to worshipping all six tattvas. In the same vein, it is difficult to worship at the same time a pantheon of five gods: Siva, Sakti, Surya, Vishnu, and Ganesa. One Devata becomes the centerpiece, Ishtadevata, with a circle of other four devatas. The initiation may be into all five Devatas or one Ishtadevata (deity of your liking or choice). Mahanirvana Tantra states that in Kali yuga, the wise should worship Devas according to Agamic rules. The Sadaka (Brahmana, Ksatriya, and Vaishya) is initiated by the Guru in Vaidik Gayatri Mantra and later in Tantric Mantra of Ishtadevata. A Sudra is initiated in Tantric Mantra alone. Initiation in Vaidik Gayatri is done according to Tantric tradition.
Guru is essential in initiation. He teaches the initiate Mantra, Yantra, Mudra, and Sadhana; external and internal purification, worship of Devatas, panchattatvas. The very fact that the initiate has come to this stage of spiritual advancement means that he has performed a goodly amount of Punyam (meritorious acts) in previous births. This qualifies him to receive Mantra (Srividya Mantra in case of Tripurasundari, TPS) instructions in a proper ritual. The Guru presents the initiate the specific Yantra of the goddess (Sri Chakra Yantra in case of TPS). Mantra is the sound-body of a god or goddess; Yantra depicts the sound-body in a diagram; just imagine Mantra is the computer code while Yantra is the computer electronic circuit board.
Though She is Parabrahman (Supreme Brahman, Brahman beyond attributes or mutation...; Immutable Ultimate Reality), she is considered the consort of Brahma. The five heads are the four Vedas and the Godhead. The weapons are for protection. Protection for and from whom? She is Almighty Goddess and does not need protection. The weapons are visible symbols to the devotees who are really in need of protection. It is a show of immense strength and power. Seeing (the weapons on the Goddess) is believing that she provides divine protection. We are earthbound creatures, hard-wired in the principle of WYSIWYG. From time immemorial, countries have been parading their weapons and soldiers. Once the devotee sees the weapons on Gayatri, he is reassured of protection from Her. The red lotus is a symbol of wealth. The Darshan (seeing, looking, observing the divine) of five faces amounts to expunging the five sins and acquiring five divine graces. The ten eyes are looking in the eight directions plus the sky and the earth protecting the good and killing the bad. I bet the world nations need Gayatri Devi all the time to do in the terrorists. What Argus sees with 100 eyes, Gayatri can do the same with ten eyes; such is her power and perception. We use idioms such as double-tongue, triple-tongue, forked tongue, foreign tongue, slip of the tongue, tongue in cheek, speaking in tongues, hold one's tongue; literal meaning of these words in a second language is the stuff of a stand-up comic. In like manner all these extra body parts convey a special meaning. Demon Ravana had ten heads; imagine inviting him for a dinner and having a chat. The ten talking heads will drive every guest bonkers. It is like a gaggle of senior correspondents, invited guests, opinion peddlers and professional verbal pugilists on a political TV forum engage in vociferous intrusive verbal slugging. Think of talking heads of Fox, CNN and MSNBC getting together. Imagine the amount of sumptuous food he will be eating, when children are starving in countries like kotakongaponga. Imagine his twenty chaotic flailing hands make maddening excursions between plates and his ten mouths. What about the clanging flatware, silverware and hollowware? Add all these to his metronomic eructations (from each head), growling borborygmi, emissive flatulence from his Jovian equatorial bulge [the belly], and a drumbeat; there you have an eruptive orchestra. That is a one man show, the best you will ever see and hear. His ten heads represent ten bad qualities which stream forth from the head(s), the seat of thought. Sri Swami Sivananda lists the ten bad qualities: passion, pride, anger, greed, infatuation, lust, hatred, jealousy, selfishness and crookedness. (Goat and Buffalo are the theriomorphic forms of lust and anger. Lust. Have you seen the Rocky Mountain goats ram their heads to the amusement of the she-goats and visitors so the winner gets to mount the nearest she-goat? That is extreme sports for the privilege. Haven't you seen or heard of men butt their heads for the same privilege?
By sacrificing lusty goats and angry buffalos, man removes these qualities from him and the community. Do you really believe in this cockamamie ritual as opined by non-believers? Why did he not think that man commits another evil act (killing) to remove two other evil qualities? A thought for rumination. In Hinduism, Ahimsa or non-injury is big. In Hinduism as opposed to Abrahamic religions, the animals have souls, thus earning equal status with man. And yet in Hinduism, man sacrifices for his sole benefit animals which he says are equal to him. Mahatma Gandhi subscribes to Ahimsa or non-injury to all beings.)
Ram Bhagavan cuts off all his ten heads in one sweep, telling us that we should rise above these ten bad qualities. Imagine a farmhand chopping off ten cabbage heads on the farm land in one swoop (or sweep). That takes a ton of dexterity. They also represent ten ego-centric senses: five motor and five sensory organs. Motor organs are larynx, hands, feet, anus and genitals and their functions are speech, grasp, locomotion, evacuation and reproduction; organs of perception are eyes, ears, nose, tongue, and skin. These organs must be brought under control. The senses have their headquarters in the head. Thus decapitation is euphemism for severing the ugly heads of senses. You may ask how you can bring the skin under control. Skin's function is touch, which encompasses appropriate touch, inappropriate touch, foreplay, sexual intercourse.... Vaishnavites are of the opinion that the Indriyas (senses) are created for the express purpose of glorifying Vishnu: chanting His names, hearing His names, tasting the sweetness of His names .... All other uses are of secondary importance.
Ravana: BRITISH MUSEUM. WIKIPEDIA
Here are the five sins:
Pancha-ma-Patakam (five heinous sins of killing, lying, stealing, drinking and abusing one's Guru). The votary should engage in Pancha Suddhi (fivefold purification) in worship: Bhuta suddhi, Anma suddhi, Dravya suddhi, Mantra suddhi, and Linga suddhi in Saivism. Tantrics also have fivefold purification: Atma suddhi, Stana Suddhi, Mantra suddhi, Dravya Suddhi, and Deva Suddhi.
Bhuta Suddhi: Daily ceremonial by which the soul is purified from daily sins, part of Anma-Suddhi.
Anma Suddhi: Soul's realization of Divine grace as its mainstay.
Dravya Suddhi: Purification of defiled objects.
Mantra Suddhi: Ceremonial purification by sprinkling water consecrated by mantra.
Linga Suddhi: Realizing the immanence of God in the non-sentient universe, as well as in the sentient.
The following is special to Tantrics, but applicable to all sects.
Stana Suddhi: Purification of the place of worship (Tantra).
Deva Suddhi: Purification of a deity which consists in placing its image on a seat, bathing it, adorning it with garments, ornaments, etc., and offering incense, light.
The five graces of God, Goddess or Gayatri are also His or Her names: SadyojAta, Vamadeva, Tat Purusha, Isana, and Aghora.
SadyojAta: Sadyo + jAta = fresh + brought into existence, born = Creator.
VAmadeva: VAma + Deva = pleasant, agreeable, fair + god = preserver.
Tatpurusha: Tat + Purusha = That + man = Original or Supreme Spirit. (Sanskrit TAT and English THAT are cognate.)
IsAna: The grace-giving form of Siva, Sadasiva. He is invisible to the human eye
Aghora: Not terrific. Destructive aspect of Siva as prelude to regeneration. It is fire that is followed by new growth.
Gayatri, the sacred mantra of 24 syllables and three feet (eight syllables in each foot), is recited by Brahmanas in their daily worship. All castes, classes, races, and followers of all religions can chant this Mantra. It has an universal appeal. When Gayatri has not been sung for three generations in a Brahmana family, the family loses its privilege and caste status and ceases to be Brahmanas. They still retain the Brahmin status; it is one or several notches below the real entity. Vaidika (Sanctioned by Vedas) Gayatri is a seed mantra and the Vedas are ensconced in it. Vaidika Gayatri:
Ombhur-bhuvah-svah tatsavitur varenyam bhargo devasya dhīmahi dhiyo yonah prachodayāt— Om, earth, atmosphere, and heaven, we meditate on the adorable glory of the radiant sun; may he inspire our intelligence—translation by Dr. Radhakrishnan. Sandya (junctional [transitional time zones] prayers—sunrise, and sunset) is performed three times a day. Now let us read the translation of Gayatri Mantra by Woodroffe: "Om, Earth, Middle region, Heaven. let us contemplate upon the adorable spirit who is in the form of the sun (Aditya Devata). May he direct our minds, towards attainment of the four-fold aims (Dharma, Artha, Kama, Moksa = righteous duty, wealth, desire and conjugal love, liberation) of all sentient beings.
Woodroffe observes and amplifies, "The Self of all which exists in the three regions appears in form of Sun-god with His body of fire. The Brahman is the cause of all, and as the visible devata is the eye of the World and the Maker of the day who vivifies, ripens and reveals all beings and things. The Sun-god is to the sun what spirit (Atman) is to the body. He is the Supreme in the form of the great Luminary. His body is the Light of the World, and He Himself is the Light of the lives of all beings. He is everywhere. He is in the outer ether as the sun, and in the inner ethereal region of the heart. He is the wondrous Light which is the smokeless Fire. He it is who is in constant play with creation, maintenance and destruction; and by His radiance pleases both eye and mind. Let us adore Him that we may escape the misery of birth and death. May He ever direct our minds (Buddhivrtti) upon the path of the world (Trivarga) and liberation (Moksa)."
GAyatri Mantra is so important that the Sun God himself came down as the preceptor and priest for Upanayana Initiation of Lord Vamana (Dwarf incarnation of Vishnu) and UpanyAsa of the Gayatri Mantra to child Vamana. (Upanayana = Sacred thread ceremony of a Brahmana boy, a Ksatriya or a Vaisya at which the boy attains twice-born status, the symbol being a loop of thread worn over the right shoulder and lower loop hanging under the left armpit.)
When God decided to become many (from Niskala to Sakala mode) a multitude of triplets appeared: three varnas (AUM); three vyahrtis (expansions, additions, utterance); three footed Gayatri, three Vedas, three Devas, and three fires. The Mantra is tatsavitur varenyam bhargo devasya dhīmahi dhiyo yonah prachodayāt; it is preceded by Pranava (Om) and maha-vyahrtis (bhur-bhuvah-svaha, added by Yajur Veda).
Vyahrti: Utterance, speech, declaration, statement. The mystical utterance of the names of the seven worlds (viz. Bhūr, bhuvar [or bhuvah], svar, mahar, janar, tapar, satya , the first three of which, called ‘the great Vyāhrtis,’ are pronounced after Om by every Brahmana in commencing his daily prayers and are personified as the daughters of Savitri and Prisni). Monier Williams Sanskrit Dictionary page 1039
The three worlds, Bhūr1, bhuvar [or bhuvah]2, svar3 are the habitats of men and gods. It is confluence of body, mind and soul. In a subjective sense, life on earth is waking1; life in the atmospheric domain, dream sleep2; life in heaven, deep sleep3. A note: Man in deep sleep is the Purest Being known to man--even terrorists are pure souls in deep sleep; he gives up all good, bad, and indifferent thoughts and deeds of his awake life; thus, a man in deep sleep is a spiritual being or the purest being; he is in touch with his God in deep sleep; thus deep sleep is heaven. Have you ever heard of a thief stealing or planning to steal in deep sleep? Here is another example from Hindu sacred texts. The man holding on to an umbrella when awake is the man with worldly attachments; the man (dozing off in a moving train: I have seen many a British on the train holding the umbrellas) going to sleep lets go of his umbrella and gets in touch with his god in deep sleep. When he comes out of deep sleep, he is disconnected from his God and temporary bliss and looks for his loose umbrella (lying on the floor of the moving train; loose umbrella = material possession). When we are in deep sleep, we are awake to the world of Spirit. The progression is from spiritually marginal condition of awake life (Bhūr1, Earthly life) full of desires, to a dream world of aspirations and expectations of Bhuvar2, and to the world of deep sleep of Svar3 (heaven), where flesh dies along with desires, and spirit rises. When we are in deep sleep we are all virtuous (Sattva); when we come back to awake life, we resume our old personality which is a combination of Sattva (virtue and goodness; the quality of truth, goodness, reality, purity), Rajas (motion, passion, desire), and Tamas (darkness, ignorance, heaviness, illusion, anger, pride, sorrow, dullness, solidity [dense]). All of us and matter possess these three qualities; they are in various combinations, each in different proportions, all amounting to 100%. Very few are 100% Sattvic: Maharishis, Ramana Maharishi, Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, Buddha, Jesus Christ. Solar Vishnu is 100% Sattvic and His body is made of Suddha Sattvam (Pure Goodness), while our bodies are made of Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. Very few are 100% Tamasic (read evil): Hitler. There is nothing in this universe which is free of these three qualities except Parabrahman who is made of Suddha Sattvam (Pure and good Empyreal Substance). Satya SAi Baba says the following (paraphrase): Take the sun in its orb; our daily lives are tuned to the apparent movement of the sun. Early morning hours (4 AM to 8AM) is a time of Sattva, prayers and meditation; risen sun to afternoon hours (8 AM to 4 PM) coincides with Rajas and frenetic activity of the human race and most other creatures; Sattvic period comes again between 4PM to 8PM for prayer and meditation; setting sun and the dark of night (8 PM to 4 AM) mark the Tamasic dark period.
All substances have these three qualities. Take water; water at room temperature is of Sattva guna, fit for drinking; boiling water and steam are of Rajasic nature--steam moves the train; ice is of Tamasic nature.
(Maharishi Bharadvaja was a Vedic Scholar and yet at age 96 he was not satisfied with the extent of his knowledge of the Vedas; he thought his knowledge was incomplete. He prayed to Indra, sought and received an additional lifetime of 100 years for the learning of Vedas and thus he received three 100-year lifetimes for intense study of Vedas. Before the last term was up for renewal, Indra appeared before Bharadvaja and asked him, "What are you going to do with the fourth 100-year lifetime?" Bharadvaja answered, "O Indra, What are you saying? I have nothing else to do except to remain a Brahmacharin (Bachelor) and learn Vedas." Indra at once created three mountain-worlds (Yes, Indra can do that!): Bhuh, Bhuvah and Svahah (world, atmosphere, and heaven). He addressed the Sage and said, "Look at these three worlds; these are the Vedas." Bharadvaja's joy knew no bounds and asked Indra, "Did I learn all these three Vedas in my three 100-year lifetimes?" Indra responded by scooping up one fistful of mud from each mountain and retorted, "O Bharadvaja, What you say is nowhere near the truth. The Vedas that you have learnt in three hundred years are three fistfuls. How many 100 years do you need to scour the three mountains clean?" Bharadvaja was pretty shaken up at the immensity of the proposal and task.
Veda: Word derived from VID (knowing) in Sanskrit and cognate with WIT in English.
Facts and Factoids: The British Library boasts: We hold 14 million books, 920,000 journal and newspaper titles, 58 million patents, 3 million sound recordings, and so much more. What is 'so much more', I don't know. Just imagine that one person (Bharadvaja) is set out to learn from this mountain of books, which is only a fistful according to Indra. Now you know why Baradvaja's ego was deflated, when the British Library is reduced to a fistful of knowledge by Indra.
The Library of Congress is the research library of the United States Congress, de facto national library of the United States, and the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States. Located in three buildings in Washington, D.C., it is the largest library in the world by shelf space and holds the largest number of books. The head of the Library is the Librarian of Congress, currently James H. Billington.--Wikipedia.
This reminds us of the Avvaiyar's pithy saying, "What you have learnt is (of the size of) fistful (of mud) and what you haven't learnt is of the size of the world. = கற்றது கைம்மண்ணளவு கல்லாதது உலகளவு."
" Thus Vedas are endless apart from its eternal existence, absent claim of authorship, and its learning by word of mouth from generation to generation.)
The view from the West
The West regards Indra as an Indo-Aryan God, whose life, times, prestige, power, glory, valor and sovereignty over the universe came to an abrupt end when Vishnu and Siva came into their own. The abrupt end is akin to when the politicians are voted out of office. It further states the importance of the other elemental gods of Indo-Aryans waned as Siva and Vishnu came to the forefront and yet the elemental gods remained as demigods and demiurges. What they saw in nature which they could not control, the Indo-Aryans called god: Sun, moon, earth, water, fire, air, ether, sky...At first, for the Indo-Aryans seeing was believing, unlike the Dravidians who in addition made an internal journey to understand and interpret god. That is how the whole repertoire of deep-thought philosophy of Dravidians came into existence. Saiva Siddhanta is one of the best examples of such philosophical speculation of the nature of god.
The present opinion is that Indo-Aryans and Dravidians are one race and originated in India; the Dravidians belong to
Mediterranean branch of Caucasians.
The Indo-Aryan went to Europe from India spreading his genes and language. Language and race have nothing to do with
one another, and skin color is not too reliable, either. --Fuerstein.
Sanskrit, Persian and Hindustani.--Wiki
Monier-Willims on Gayatri Mantra in his book Brahmanism and Hinduism
Mantras and Bījas. page 201 (237 of 644)
'We meditate on that being who has ashes for weapons; we think of that being who possesses sharp teeth; let our fever (jvara) incite him.' This is called the fever-gāyatrī.
'We meditate on the goddess of nectar; we think of the goddess of love (Kāmeśvarī); let our affection incite him.' This is called the nectar-gāyatrī.
'We meditate on the lord of water (Jaleśvara); we think of the fish-net; let the fish (mīna) incite him.'' This is called the fish-gāyatrī.
'We meditate on that being who has a snare for snaring animals; we think of the act of cutting off the victim's head (Siras-cheda); let our offering (bali) incite him.' This is called the bali-gāyatrī.
No magician, wizard, sorcerer or witch whose feats are recorded in history, biography, or fable, has ever pretended to be able to accomplish by incantation and enchantment half of what the Mantra-śāstrī claims to have power to effect by help of his Mantras. For example, he can prognosticate futurity, work the most startling prodigies, infuse breath into dead bodies, kill or humiliate enemies, afflict anyone anywhere with disease or madness, inspire any one with love, charm weapons and give them unerring efficacy1 , enchant armour and make it impenetrable, turn milk into wine, plants into meat, or invert all such processes at will. He is even superior to the gods, and can make gods, goddesses, imps and demons carry out his most trifling behests. Hence it is not surprising that the following remarkable saying is everywhere current throughout India: —
'The whole universe is subject to the gods; the gods are subject to the Mantras; the Mantras to the Brāhman s; therefore the Brāhman s are our gods2.'
1 Warlike weapons when thus charmed were supposed to possess supernatural powers, and to assume a kind of divine personality like the genii of the Arabian Nights. Certain spells had to be learnt for their restraint as well as for their use. When once let loose, he only who knew the secret Mantra for recalling them could bring them back.
2The Sanskrit version of this saying is given incorrectly by Dubois (P 77)' I have heard it variously rendered. Perhaps the following is the most usual; — Devādhīnaṃ Jagatsarvam Mantrādhīnāś-ća Devatāḥ Mantrāś-ća Brāhmaṇādhīnā Brāhmaṇā mama Devatāḥ.
Tan Mantram Brahmanadhīnam
Brahmana mama Devata.
Mantras and Bījas, 202 (238 of 644)
Often these Mantra-śāstrīs are mere fortune-tellers. --Monier-Williams
I may mention as an illustration that a Śākta Brāhman of this type came to see me one day at Patna. He asked to look at my hand, and, after examining it for a minute, prophesied that my stay in India would be happy and prosperous, except that on that day fortnight I should meet with a great disappointment. I smiled at the absurdity of his attempting to forecast my future biography, but it is certain that I only met with one unexpected and most mortifying contretemps from the day of my departure from England to the day of my return, and that happened on the very day predicted. It must at least be acknowledged that the coincidence was remarkable. -Monier-Williams
I may also give an outline of a story told to me by a Maratha Pandit, which well illustrates the sort of use these Mantra-śāstrīs are supposed to make of their magical powers. A certain Śākta Brāhman , named Bhāskarāćārya, well-versed in the Mantras, expected to be asked to a dinner-party given by a wealthy friend, but received no invitation. This so irritated the Brāhman that he determined to revenge himself on the householder who had ventured so imprudently to slight him. Having waited till the moment when the assembled guests, with appetites stimulated by the fragrance of an array of choice dishes, were about to feast on the delicacies prepared for their consumption, he quietly in his own house selected a particular Mantra, and by simply repeating it turned all the viands into foul and fetid excrementitious matter. The story goes on to relate how the householder, suspecting the cause of this disastrous metamorphose, sent a messenger in hot haste to implore the immediate presence of the offended Brāhman , who thereupon becoming mollified, obligingly consented to repeat another Mantra which reconverted all the filth into the most delicious ambrosial food.
The philosophical system of Saiva Sidhdhantha, a system, which may be ranked among the most perfect and cleverest systems of human thought--Prof. Dr. Kamil Vaclav Zvelebil, September 17, 1927 - January 17, 2009
Primer in Saiva Siddhanta
The Indo-Aryans wandered around with makeshift shelters and hastily built fire pits for Yagna (fire sacrifice). Joseph Campbell states they were the genetic soul brothers of the ancient Greeks, from whom they broke away and wandered into India (from Central Asia). Modern Indologists dispute outside-of-India origin of Indo-Aryans. They were constantly exposed to wind, air, fire, water, space, sky, sun, moon, stars, which became their gods. Indra wields Vajra (the thunderbolt) and sends drenching rain which defeats the drought demon, Vrtra. If you see parched fields with deep fissures, it is the work of Vrta, who is waiting to be appeased by the farmers. Indra thrives on Soma; the Indo-Aryans are the purveyors and suppliers of Soma; it is a perfect fit in the domain of supply and demand; it is like commerce. When he imbibes Soma, he exhibits more strength, vigor and power, which he uses to reward the suppliers of Soma and thus provides for the welfare of mankind by sending rain and cattle. Bhagavan Krishna (also an Indo-Aryan) keeps the Indo-Aryan god Indra in line all the time so that he does not puff up with pride. In one instance, to defy Krishna's supremacy as the Paramatman, Indra sends days and days of endless rain. The cowherds, their spouses, children, and animals (cows) face an imminent threat of being swept away by floods. (It was worse than Katrina 2005.) Krishna comes to the rescue and holds up a mountain, so that all the living creatures can take shelter under its cover. They live by grace of Krishna. Indra coming to know of it begs for forgiveness. Krishna (in his magnanimity to the vanquished) authorized celebration of this day every year in mid January in honor of Indra which coincides with the northern passage of the sun. (It is like President Obama honoring and giving the jobs of VP and SOS to Biden and Clinton after defeating them in 2008 presidential elections.) It is a four-day harvest festival in honor of Indra, sun god, farm animals and farm workers and is known as Pongal (பொங்கல்) in Tamil Nadu, Makara Sankranti in North India, Onam, Kanumu, Lohri, Bihu, Bhogi, and Hadaga in various parts of India. (Jan 2009)
Soma is a drink of the ancient Brahmanas and gods. The Brahmanas curried favor with Indra by providing Soma to gods. It is better than Scotch Whiskey. When you drink it, you get a double whammy: Inebriation and hallucination. What is worse or better than being stoned, stupid and stultified? You can't buy Soma anymore. You may get it when you go to Indra Loka (the world of Indra). Indra has a huge cellar fully stocked with Soma. Don't expect him to part with his Vintage Soma. No one knows its ingredients and the art of distilling it. Indra would not reveal its ingredients as the Coke people would not tell what is in Coke* which in comparison is a benign drink. I know it has sugar in it, but it is not all sugar; there is something more. It is believed by earthlings Soma was made from mushrooms. The Religious Leaders of the present deny that Soma gives inebriation and hallucination. How would they know it? They haven't imbibed it simply because it is not available and locked away in Indraloka. Indra drinks it just before he goes to war. Thus one has to be stupid, stoned and stultified to go to war, when things can be resolved just by talking.
Coke* On February 11, 2011 Ira Glass revealed on his PRI radio show, This American Life, that the secret formula to Coca-Cola had been uncovered in a 1979 newspaper. The formula found basically matched the formula found in Pemberton's diary. --Wikipedia.
The West says that this is an instance where Vishnu (Krishna) eclipses Indra totally and irrevocably. Krishna is an Indo-Aryan, though dark-blue in complexion. Look, He is the real Blue Blood. His father was an Indo-Aryan king and his mother was an Indo-Aryan princess. It looks like Aryans are polychromatic and come in shades and tints. Krishna uproots (steals) the celestial tree (Parijata tree--Erythrina Indica = Wish-fulfilling tree) from the celestial garden of Indra and mounts it on Garuda for transportation to Dwaraka at the request of his consort, Satyabhama. The gardeners of Indra protest and tell Indra and his wife Saci (Indrani, Aindri). Parijata is no ordinary tree. Won't you get angry, if someone steals your luscious mango tree from your garden or grove? It came from Milk ocean. Saci loved its fragrant flowers and luscious fruits. She wore the flowers on her tresses. She moved like a goddess (She really is) among the trees and bushes smelling the roses. When the gardeners see her coming, they all fall prostrate on the grounds and stay there until she leaves the garden. She is a good goddess and exchanges pleasantries with the gardeners. Saci was heart-broken; Indra could not bear to see an unhappy distraught wife. He fought with Krishna and lost his weapons, elephant.... Drinking Soma before the battle did not help him. When he was standing alone on the battlefield without weapons, Krishna let him live. Such Grace and such Magnanimity can come only from Krishna Bhagavan, the divine tree Thief, the butter Thief, the Lord of the Universe.... To make things short, Indra and Saci agreed to let Krishna take the tree (steal the tree under their noses; they have no other viable choice.) and return it after Krishna's demise. (This is one of the most important tenets of SriVaishnavism: Yes, everything is His; No, you don't own it; you have a temporary custody of it; don't become attached to it; what He giveth, He can taketh away.) As you enter the temple of Krishna in Guruvayoor, you may say "Om Namo Narayana" besides Govinda and other Mantras. NAMO = NA + MA[HAH] = No + Yes (power, perfection). The votary says to Narayana, "No, Nothing is mine; Yes, they (all power, perfection, the universe, the souls) belong to You. The door frame of the temple denotes this principle. Rama and Krishna are the two Avatars of Vishnu. Whatever Rama does is right within the purview of existing laws and ethics at that moment in time and place. Whatever Krishna does is also right, no matter how unethical and unlawful it looks. Krishna is Supreme; when bad dudes do Machiavellian deeds, Krishna does super-Machiavellian deeds to counter them. When it comes to Indra, he had a thing against Krishna. He sent torrential rains on the cowherds, cows, children and the gopis; they were literally drowning in the floods. Krishna plucked Govardana hill and held it up so the victims took refuge under it. Just because Indra is the god of thunder, lightning and rain, he can't do what he did. Krishna puts him in his place every time. The all-wise west scrutinized, anal-yzed and offered up an explanation. The elemental gods of the Indo-Aryans [the sky-god, the wind-god, the fire-god, the water-god and the earth-god] went into near-oblivion, when Siva and Vishnu came into their own and thus displaced the elemental gods as the gods of worship.
Abbe Dubois derides Gayatri Mantra, so highly regarded by Hindus. He observes (exudes malevolent wry remark) that Gayatri Mantram removes the sins and that gods tremble at it. The Brahmin must make sure that he always repeats it in a low voice, that he is not overheard by a Sudra, or even by his own wife, particularly at the time when she is in a state of uncleanness (monthly periods). The Mantram should not be imparted to an unbeliever (like Abbe Dubois). Page 138-140: Hindu Manners, Customs and Ceremonies
(In the days of Dubois in Tamil Nadu, the Sudras and the women should not overhear Gayatri Mantra; it is so sacred that only Brahmanas, Ksatriyas and Vaisyas can chant, making sure no woman including wife and the foot-born Sudra are not around cocking their ears to the sound of the Mantra. The Brahmana [Devout man with knowledge of sacred Texts] was born from the Mouth of God, the Ksatriya [warrior, king] from the Arms, the Vaisya [third caste: Merchants] from the Thigh and the Sudra [worker] from the feet. God's mouth is synonym for Sacred Knowledge; arms for power, weapons and wielding weapons; thigh for merchandise and merchandizing and foot for service of the first three castes. In reality, the feet are the support for the other three and deserve respect and adoration. Just imagine the three upper castes without feet.)
Donald A Mackenzie says that Brahma took Gayatri, the milkmaid, as a second wife because his chief wife, Sarasvati, despite her wisdom arrived late for a certain important ceremony, at which the spouse of the god was required. Sarasvati cursed Brahma so that he could only be worshipped once a year. page 44, 149 Myths & Legends of India.
The following commentary by the author (Krishnaraj) is a comedic relief and analysis rather than an expression of vexation. Dear mack: Calling Gayatri the milkmaid is as bad, idiotic, inconsiderate, vile and ignorant as calling President Truman out-of-his-league haberdasher, Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill (1874-1965) the Bulldog that barked in King's English, Jesus Christ the failed carpenter, Mahatma Gandhi a half-naked fakir, Honorable Jewish Matchmaker Shadchan a pimp,....
January 24, 2015: Today is the 50th anniversary of Sir Winston Churchill, whose statue stands in the Parliament Square London. The British
Government will be installing Mahatma Gandhi's statue sometime in 2015. Who ever thought Mahatma Gandhi's statue will be standing
in the same square? photo of Sir Winston Churchill: pl.wikipedia.org. Mr. Gandhi: photo by Desai.
January 20, 2017: Churchill's bust was restored to Oval Office on the Inauguration day of President Donald J. Trump.
March 14, 2015 Statues of Churchill and Gandhi in one space!
(Reuters) - A statue of independence leader Mahatma Gandhi was unveiled on Saturday in London's prestigious Parliament Square, a space packed mostly with monuments to men who served the British Empire that Gandhi helped destroy.
In an ironic twist noted by the Indian government, Gandhi's likeness now shares the same space as a statue of Britain's former leader Winston Churchill, who tried to thwart Indian independence and who despised Gandhi and his aims.
Some Britons took offense when Winston Churchill's bust was replaced with
King's in the Oval Office. But the decision to return the Churchill bust
to the British — it had been presented by former Prime Minister Tony Blair
to Bush on loan — had been made before Obama even arrived.
"It was already scheduled to go back," Allman said.
The White House seemed to be trying to make amends when it made a point of reporting that Obama would keep on his desk a wooden penholder that British Prime Minister Gordon Brown gave him during a March visit. The penholder is crafted from wood taken from the HMS Gannet, the sister ship to the Resolute, a British naval vessel whose wood was used to make the presidential desk. Jan 11, 2010
| It is quite possible
Winston was chomping on Trichi Cigars.
The well-known Trichinopoly cigars are chiefly manufactured from Tobacco grown outside the district at Dindigul. It was said that Winston Churchill developed a taste for the mildly aromatic Trichy cigar that was traded from Fort St George to Whitehall during 2nd World War. Wikipedia
Thus spake Sir Winston and spooked decent men and women.
SWC: Sir Winston Churchill; Standard Water Closet
SWC: "Keep England White" is a good slogan.
SWC: I hate Indians. They are a beastly people with a beastly religion.-- Winston Churchill
Mark Twain on Hinduism: And it doesn't allow him to eat meat; the animal that furnished the meat was murdered, and to take any creature's life is a sin. It is a good and gentle religion, but inconvenient. --Mark Twain
SWC: Churchill: And you, madam, are ugly. But in the morning, I shall be sober. (Who is calling whom ugly?)
In one such meeting, he reportedly told Field Marshall Jan Smuts of South Africa, "You are responsible for all our troubles in India. You had Gandhi for years and did not do away with him." Smuts replied, "When I put him in prison three times, all Gandhi did was make me a pair of bedroom slippers."
SWC: (India is) a godless land of snobs and bores. --Winstone
(Gandhi's saying: It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honoured by the humiliation of their fellow beings.)
SWC: India is a geographical term. It is no more a united nation than the Equator. (What predictive Clairvoyance of winston, the wise man)
SWC: It was time, he said, to show the world that "the vigour and vitality of our race is unimpaired."
Churchill "resolutely believed the economic dealings between Britain and India rested not on imperialist domination but the free exchange of raw goods (mostly Indian) for manufactured ones (mostly British)."
SWC: He favored the government preventing the unfit from breeding. (p.161) Eugenics supporters: Leonard Darwin, Winston Churchill, Auguste Forel, Alexander Graham Bell, Otmar Freiherr von Verschuer.
SWC: I do not agree that the dog in a manger has the final right to the manger even though he may have lain there for a very long time. I do not admit that right. I do not admit for instance, that a great wrong has been done to the Red Indians of America or the black people of Australia. I do not admit that a wrong has been done to these people by the fact that a stronger race, a higher-grade race, a more worldly wise race to put it that way, has come in and taken their place.
Speaking in the House of Commons, autumn 1937
SWC: I do not understand the squeamishness about the use of gas. I am strongly in favour of using poisonous gas against uncivilised tribes. --Winston Churchill
(It appears that Chemical Ali, husain and winston are gassy soul mates.)
And it did take Mahatma Gandhi's death for Churchill to appreciate his greatness.
"When Gandhi was assassinated, by then India had its independence and it wasn't top of the political agenda for Churchill. So it was only then that Churchill could see Gandhi in the round," Roberts said.
Mahatma had finally conquered even the tenacious man once likened to a bulldog. (Even a churchillian pit bull can be trained to become a lap dog by Gandhian peace offensive.--Krishnaraj)
FDR had very specific recommendations about what to do with British India back in 1941 -
Indians do agree that there were and are many Great Britishers who fell in love with India and wished us well.
A note on Woodroffe (1865-1936): That wonderful soul, that British Orientalist, that universal man, that gift to humanity, that Britisher came to India by divine ordination in the form of a civil servant and justice, who later became professor of Indian Law at Oxford. If it is not for him, the hidden treasures of India would not have been revealed to the world. Indians kept all religious texts under wraps esp. from foreigners. Woodroffe pried their tight fists open to reveal the treasures for public good. Woodroffe felt at ease in his British attire and Indian loin cloth and shawl, an attestation to his status as universal man.
"While maintaining his public profile as a judge and scholar of British Indian law, Woodroffe was also a private student of the tantras, who published a huge body of texts and translations and thus pioneered the modern academic study of Tantra in the West. Yet Woodroffe was also an apologist, seeming to have bent over backward to defend the Tantras against their many critics and to prove that they represent a noble, pure, and ethical philosophical system in basic accord with the Vedas and Vedānta."--Wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Woodroffe
Sir John Woodroffe was one such Great Soul.
Margaret E. Noble aka Sister Nivedita: October 20, 1867---October 13, 1911
She was born in Ireland on October 20, 1867 to parents Mary Isabel and Samuel Richmond Noble Her father was a preacher to whom religion meant service to the poor. Young Margaret Nobel came under the spell of Swami Vivekananda. She came from distant Ireland to India to serve the people of this land. She was given the name of ‘Nivedita’ as one dedicated to God. She became a teacher to little children and their mothers. When plague or famine or flood ravaged the land she became the very personification of compassion and service. Nivedita is the deathless symbol of sacrifice and service. Author - Prabhu Shankara.
Sarasvati, despite her wisdom arrived late: This characterization of dissociating wisdom from late-coming is a subtle and yet obvious insult to Sarasvati, who is the goddess of arts, music and letters. mack expects all wise people to show up on time; only stupid people show up late. All this goes to show that the West goes out of the way to denigrate Hinduism in any way it can. I am not complaining; if Hinduism cannot survive and thrive on these offensive forays, it is not worth its name. What mack says is that Brahma left a learned woman for a milkmaid. mack must have felt a toothless vicarious glee at this scandal. West treats Hinduism in a manner the media treats Paris Hilton or Jamie Lynn Spears. (Feb 2008). Sensationalism is its currency. Hinduism is full of symbolism. To take symbolism as the subject of criticism denotes lesser minds. Brahma's consorts are his energies. What Sarasvati represents in Brahma is His Creative Aspect and Knowledge required for such an act. Sarasvati's other names are Gayatri, Satarupa, Savitri and Brahmani. Actually her full name is Sarasvati Gayatri, who is the personified energy of Brahma. Many names of Sarasvati are intended to depict her essential quality in each of her names. When Sarasvati was busy with other important chores, Sarasvati sent herself in the name of Gayatri (a deity can do such things; example of pluripotential powers of a deity.) for the sacrifice which could not continue without the physical presence of wife. Sarasvati is a river, wife of Brahma, daughter of Brahma, goddess of all arts and sciences, a milkmaid....Remember mack, in your days when there was no supermarket (Yes, I am talking to a dead man), your wife was a milkmaid. I bet you had a milch cow around ready and willing to be milked. I hope your wife did not loose her front teeth from agile reflexive kick from the hind foot of the cow, which didn't like its teats pulled, squeezed, squashed and milked by a klutz. Let me give you an example as to how mack has interpreted Brahma's marriage to Gayatri (the milkmaid). King and queen attend a ball. The queen on occasions adjusts his pillow, makes his bed, cooks his meals in the microwave oven, and makes coffee for the king. What mack says is that the king takes his maid (cook) for the ball.
The West quotes Rg Veda.,VI.44 and 45 in a benignly divisive note with frothy exuberance that the priests sometimes plead with Indra to punish the ones who fail to give them gifts (daksina- an example of commerce) and cuff the dark-skinned dasyus and pamper, preserve and protect the purity of Indo-Aryan race. (That is news to me, incredulous!) The Dasyu hatred softened with intermarriage, and transmuted to punishing those who broke the religious covenant and laws of Varuna, Aryaman and Mitra. Varuna is the enveloping sky, personified as an Aryan God and the Lord of light and dark. He is a noble Lord and a relentless enforcer of RTA. He is the Law and Order god of the skies.
Wendy Doniger translates Dasyus as slaves, a term used in Rg Veda to designate non-Aryan aborigines. In reference to Kalkin, the future incarnate of Vishnu, Doniger says the word Dasyus denotes any non-Hindus. (page 237, Hindu Myths, by Wendy Doniger.) On that note, Donigar admits she is a Dasyu.
Population genetics of Indians
In a 2009 study of 132 individuals, 560,000 single-nucleotide polymorphisms in 25 different Indian groups were analyzed, providing strong evidence in support of the notion that modern Indians (both Indo-Aryan and Dravidian groups) are a hybrid population descending from two pre-historic, genetically divergent populations, one of which, referred to as the 'Ancestral North Indians', 40,000 years ago and the other, called the 'Ancestral South Indians', 60,000 years ago. The intermingling of ANI's and ASI's happened in the same period as the ANI's first appeared, 40,000 years ago. The study also holds, that the caste system grew out of tribal-like organizations of the Indian society. In another study of 2009 conducted among 10 Asian countries, Dravidian peoples showed similarities with north Indians as well as peoples of Malaysia, Singapore and China. Dravidian grammatical impact on the structure and syntax of Indo-Aryan languages is considered far greater than the Indo-Aryan grammatical impact on Dravidian. Some linguists explain this anomaly by arguing that Middle Indo-Aryan and New Indo-Aryan were built on a Dravidian substratum.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dravidian_peoples
From The Times September 24, 2009
Researchers analysed more than 500,000 genetic markers from 132 people from 25 different groups.
The research established that modern Indians of all castes are descended from two ancestral groups.
Indians can trace between 39 per cent and 71 per cent of their ancestry to a population known as the Ancestral Northern Indians (ANI), who are quite closely related to Europeans and Asians. Those with a higher ancestral contribution from the ANI group are more likely to belong to higher castes, and to speak Indo-European languages such as Hindi and Bengali.
The other ancient population are the Ancestral Southern Indians (ASI), who are not genetically close to any group outside the sub-continent. People with a higher ASI ancestry are more likely to belong to lower castes, and to speak non Indo-European languages such as Tamil.
The research, by scientists from CCMB in India and Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the United States, has also established that Indians are much more genetically diverse than Europeans.
This result indicates that many modern Indian groups are descended from a small number of founding individuals”, whose descendants interbred among themselves to create genetically isolated populations.
Lalji Singh, director of CCMB, said: India is genetically not a single large population, but instead is best described as many smaller isolated populations.
This insight has important medical implications for people of Indian origin, because groups that are descended from small founding populations often have a high incidence of inherited diseases. Ashkenazi Jews, for example, have a high risk of Tay-Sachs disease.
This may explain why several genetic conditions are more common in India than elsewhere: a mutation in a gene called MYBPC3, which raises the risk of heart failure sevenfold, is found in 4 per cent of Indians but is exceptionally rare elsewhere.
The only ethnic group who do not have this shared ancestry is the indigenous population of the Andaman Islands in the Indian Ocean, who appear to be of exclusively ASI descent.
Nick Patterson, of the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, said: The Andamanese are unique. Understanding their origins provides a window on to the history of the Ancestral South Indians, and the period tens of thousands of years ago when they diverged from other Eurasians.
Mr. Singh added: Our project to sample the disappearing tribes of the Andaman Islands has been more successful than we could have hoped, as the Andamanese are the only surviving remnant of the ancient colonisers of South Asia.
Aravinda Chakravarti, of Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland, wrote in a commentary for Nature: Greater ANI ancestry is significantly associated with Indo-European speakers and with traditionally ‘higher’ caste membership. This provides a model of how diversity within India came about. As such, its details are imperfect and will surely be contested, revised and improved.
Caste and custom may be strong barriers between groups, perhaps even today. But the common shared ancestry and rampant ANI/ASI mixture may be the strong, invisible thread that binds all Indians.
India's caste system 'is thousands of years old', DNA shows India's caste system stretches back thousands of years and was not largely a creation of colonial rule, as some historians claim, a genetic study has shown.
Makara: A sea-monster designed, assembled from Soma-induced hallucination and inebriation and given life by proponents of CHAOS. This aquatic animal was broken to the saddle by god Varuna, god of sky, rain, ocean and of law and order and underworld, the king of men, gods and the universe, the wielder of MAyA, the dispatcher of spies to the universe and the herder of transgressors and liars with the flying noose. (This is a warning to the politicians caught lying. God Varuna would get you one way or another.--October 2012 before the Presidential Elections.) We need someone like this god today to rein in the terrorists, the right wingers and the left wingers. Jan 2011. The Chaos designers of Makara put together an animal which is neither a crocodile, nor a shark, nor a dolphin nor a hippo and yet Makara may seem like them in parts; that is the sign of Chaos out of which god Varuna brings order. Makara (मगर) is cognate with 'mugger' (मगर in Sanskrit for the animal depicted here).
Varuna = KBO = Kuiper Belt Object. Probably a Dwarf planet. God Varuna is honored by his other name 20000 Varuna.
20000 Varuna is a large classical Kuiper belt object. It previously had the provisional designation 2000 WR106 and has been precovered in plates dating back to 1953. It is probably a dwarf planet.
Varuna is named after a Hindu deity. Varuna was one of the most important deities of the ancient Indians, and he presided over the waters of the heaven and of the ocean and was the guardian of immortality. Due to his association with the waters and the ocean, he is often identified with Greek Poseidon and Roman Neptune (20000 Varuna is TNO = Trans-Neptunian Object). Varuna received the minor planet number 20000 because it was the largest cubewano found so far and was believed to be as large as Ceres. Estimates for the diameter of Varuna have varied from 500 to 1,060 km. notes on July 13, 2015.
cubewano = cubewano is a low-eccentricity Kuiper belt object (KBO) that orbits beyond Neptune and
is not controlled by an orbital resonance
Master sculptor Ganapati Sthapati describes makara as a mythical animal with the body of a fish, trunk of an elephant, feet of a lion, eyes of a monkey, ears of a pig, and the tail of a peacock. Although it seems improbable, these disparate elements come together to form one of the commonest leitmotifs in Indian temple iconography. A line of makara may run along the length of a temple wall, or form the hand rail of a staircase. But most prominently, this beast acts as structural bookend of a thoranam-தோரணம் or archway behind a deity. The arch issues forth from the jaws of one makara, rises to a pinnacle, the kirtimukha (கீர்த்தி முகம், the ‘Face of Glory'), and descends into the yawning gape of another makara.
The fabulous beast isn't just an adornment; it apparently symbolises chaos (and how chaotic can an animal get?) out of which order and creation arise. The height of order is depicted by the fearsome kirtimukha, and then creation descends once more into chaos. The deity sitting in front of the archway presides over the eternal cycle of creation and destruction. --thehindu.com
He (Varuna, the Lord of the skies and Law and Order) eyes from the sky, which any day outperforms the modern spy satellites and drones and his spies have their sight fixed at all times on the violators of law and order. He is the silent and invisible omnipresent secret agent in all assemblies of people of any size. Ok, I have to concede that we have the next best thing, the Predator (= today's Makara; Reapers and Drones), the unmanned aerial vehicle and a MALE (medium-altitude, long-endurance) UVA System that does reconnaissance and fires missiles. In Greek mythology, you have the Furies (Erinyes), the three winged goddesses: Alecto, Megaera and Tisiphone, who punish those who somehow escaped punishment. President Obama was praised to have made the "gutsy" decision to neutralize a high-value target, OBL. May, 2011.
One day, we will all be carrying a chip on our shoulders by law or choice. The chip will be so small, non-reactive and inert, it will not elicit any foreign-body reaction. The cats already carry them. Mothers will insist on chips to locate the children in case they lose them. The chip will be implanted by injection. Your child's first shot may be the ID chip in the nursery or doctor's office of the future. It will be like the foot print or the fingerprint. As in the supermarket checkout counter or E-Z pass, wherever you go, you will be registering your presence and movement on the ubiquitous registers all over the country and in the sky. There are pros and cons. First the pros. When you get stranded and need help, the register will help locate you fast.
2009: Consider the case of 11-year old Jaycee Dugard abducted in 1991. She would have been found soon after abduction if she had had an implanted ID. You may say the suggestion is way over the head. If you make a chip smaller than a grain of sand, it should be acceptable.
Consider the case of James Stephen Fossett (Born April 22, 1944 - missing Sep 3, 2007 in a plane crash). If he were wearing a traceable and trackable ID, he would have been found the same day, he was lost. He disappeared September 3, 2007 and his remains were found more than a year later on September 29, 2008. With all the millions at his disposal, he died a lonely death, which could have been prevented by traceable and trackable ID. Of course there are people who don't want to be traced; they say they go hiking but fly somewhere else and act in profligate abandon.
The lawmen will be carrying a wand reader. Law-abiding people have nothing to worry. People who are genuinely concerned about privacy have to think of the pros instead of the cons. I can think of a funny thing that happens in the privacy of a bedroom, a room, a nook or a backseat, when two chips engage in surreptitious consortium. The undulating chips on the monitor are a source of fun, entertainment and livelihood for the law enforcement personnel, sleuths, scamps, gumshoes, flatfoots, pries, rapscallions, scoundrels, turds,.... Beware! Profligate Patrons, the walls in the hotels will have registers that record all encounters, esp. the surreptitious undulations of a pair of chips.
Abuses: Remember peepholes, mirrors and cameras. Scoundrels take illegal peephole video of other people during their undulant pastimes.
Oct 2009: Remember the case of MDB shooting peephole video of EA.
Court papers say Michael D. Barrett requested and received a hotel room adjacent to ESPN reporter Erin Andrews at the Nashville Marriott at Vanderbilt University. Barrett then allegedly jimmied the peephole of Andrews' hotel door, shot the videos and uploaded them to the Internet. --seattletimes.nwsource.com
Since chips are removable by surgical excision, there will be ID by DNA. You cannot remove or destroy your DNA. There will come a time when the DNA fingerprint ID of every person will become the identifier and be televised on the screen in the airports etc. Take the recent case of high-value target identified by DNA - May 2011. The Cameras, credit cards, cell phones, EZ Pass, Chip Readers, possibly DNA readers in one place will become the ubiquitous instruments of surveillance of every block, every nook and every corner in the cities. With the ubiquitous cell phones, tracing should not be a problem. Teenagers or underage children cannot buy cigarettes or alcohol unless they get a swiping and frisking with a Wand Chip Reader. Dealers in death-dealing recreational drugs will be fitted with non-reactive chips in the maxillary sinus cavity or peritoneal cavity by ENT or general surgeons, so tracing their movements can be as simple as connecting the dots. If worse comes to worse, some devilish entrepreneurial neurosurgeon will offer services to implant a non-reactive chip deep in the ventricle of the brain, traceable and trackable by GPS. It beats the removable ankle bracelets for parolees for GPS tracking. Of course, these are way over the top. But a timorous nation, society or community may clamor for such extreme measures for extreme situations like keeping a sexual predator on leash. Try to get the Ventricular Implant removed in a walk-in Neuropathic clinic in the city of Tunkutinku. The people whose freedom has been taken away by the Govt. go to the extent of removing the dermal ridges from the finger tips by surgical means. Think of the fellow who carried a buried vein-like bag in his elbow containing animal or somebody else's blood. Remember those days when poor children and adults were subjected to frontal lobotomy for cockamamie reasons.
Now we have the automatic identification of retinal arteries and veins from dual-wavelength images. It is not fool-proof. What happens to the image when the person develops diabetic retinopathy, exudates, hemorrhages, cataracts, corneal opacities....?
Now they have Iris Recognition Technology IRT. The system requires you stand still for IRT at least less than 10 meters from the imaging gadget for proper recognition. I have a suggestion to the Law enforcement agencies. They should incorporate IRT imaging system unobtrusively and stealthily in the airports in such strategic places where people have to stand still and look: Ticket counters, the arrival and departure TV screens, departure gates. The staff working at departure gates should use eyewares that transmit images of the iris of the travelers to a central command post. At the departure and arrival gates, there should be a bank of IRT gadgets that capture the iris images of all departing and arriving passengers. This will be unobtrusive and convenient. Or with the scanning eyewear the scanning staff should say to the passenger in the scolding way of Judge Judy, "Look here (pointing to her eyes) and not there." We should call it "Judge Judy Maxim" or for short "JJM." UAE has already been using IRT at the immigration inspection points. Now they have facial recognition technology, by which the technicians can pick out the person of interest in no time.
I have a warning and advice. Passengers can fool the security people by putting eye drops (Mydriatic) that dilates the pupil so much so that there is no iris to see. The Airport should equip themselves with a Miotic under medical supervision to reverse the dilation of pupil for proper Iris Recognition. By the time the pupil constricts, the passenger missed the flight.
August 9, 2012 New Scientist
The FBI is gearing up for a nationwide launch of a $1 billion project designed to identify people of interest, according to the New Scientist. Dubbed the Next Generation Identification (NGI) program, the high-tech endeavor uses biometric data such as DNA analysis, iris scans and voice identification to track down folks with a criminal history.
June 8, 2013
People are excited and upset about surveillance programs at the present. They have a reason to complain and yet if there is an attack, they will turn around and blame the Government. Just wait. Things will get worse (or better) in the future. Now the newborns are screened for metabolic diseases. There will be a day every newborn will be screened and DNA profile saved in the Government computers. You think it is bad and invasion of privacy. You can avoid it by not having a baby. Nursery is the place to collect all the initial biometric data at no cost to the hospital or the patient and entirely funded by the government. That day is coming. From the nursery to the grave, everyone's biometric data will be recorded and saved, as the person grows. This DNA profile will be extended to all visitors at their expense in the countries of origin. If you don't like it, stay home. The undocumented will be caught, corralled and DNAed before they are released or deported. All these data will be in the passports, Drivers' Lics... and a person of interest will be identified instantaneously as the officer swipes the passport... The Government already has DNA profiles of POI (Person of Interest) wanted by the US but residing abroad. You wonder how they do it. They collect DNA from dandruff, toothbrush, shed hair... of relatives or from the POI. You have a right to be paranoid. One way to keep your nose clean is to follow the commonsense laws.
There was once a person who wanted to fool the system. He surgically implanted a thick-walled balloon in his elbow filled with discarded blood bank specimen. He fooled the authorities a few times. An astute Fed drew the blood and found it too dark to be real. He was discovered and seen counting rails.
September 8, 2016. You are what your hair is. DNA has the code; hair is the product. Hair proteins don't lie. DNA can deteriorate. Hair is for ever. Hair protein analysis is called proteomics. There are no gimmicks here. Bingo, you caught the person by the hair. "1,000 genetic markers inherent in hair’s protein mutations make us separate individuals." Let me have the hairbrush please. We all know about the minerals in the hair. Heavy metals find their way into the hair. Now we have hair for identification. https://www.rt.com/usa/358659-biological-evidence-hair-dna/
India is the capital for Baby Farms, Surrogate Mothers, Rented Wombs... In this situation, there is a problem. The sperm meets and mates with the ovum on a Petri dish and the embryo is implanted in a rented womb. Nature provided here an instance of no rejection of the implant, though the embryo is foreign to her DNA. In this case, the baby's DNA is totally foreign to the mother and her husband. This is the only time you see a lily white baby coming out of a black mother. Collecting DNA from this surrogate mother to identify the baby has no value. The Feds have to collect the DNA from the biological parents and the baby. There is an exception. During pregnancy, there is invariably migration of babies blood into the mother (fetomaternal transfusion) and mother's blood into the baby. There are ways to identify which is what.
Here is an outrageous thought. There will be a day, when pigs will serve as the surrogate mothers for the human babies. This obviously means that the aspiring infertile couple will not spend $7K to 10K to rent a human womb. The pig will not bond with the human baby. We were apes and pigs before we became humans. We are 80% cow and only 20% human. We are more cow than human. Does that mean we are cannibals because we eat cow?
You cannot take a janitor's job or for that matter sit as the Supreme Court judge without your biometric data on record. In case a person of interest has to be identified forthwith, the data are sitting in the computers for mining with permission from the court. Your data will be on your driver's license, passports..., which only a government agency can read. Your credit cards will carry permissible data for reading and identification.
You know the boons and banes of electronic-tolling technology, EZPass, credit cards and escort services. You heard of moguls who used EZPass and credit cards in the pursuit of extramarital pelvic pleasures, pastimes and passados. That mogul had his wife's name on the credit card; she had the privilege of paying the bills. Honey, do you recognize this charge for $469.69. Yes dear, that was the Gym membership fees.
Just wait, permissible data will be part of your credit card. Wherever you go, Reader Equipment will be in place: Malls, Airports... No, you don't have to swipe your card, the Readers will register your presence at the precise moment in time and place. No, they won't take your money; they just want to know where you are. Don't carry other people's card to fool the system; there will be built-in safeguards. Your movements from dot to dot will be drawn and connected and you will be the sitting duck for the Federal Agents, if you are a person of interest. You think it is intrusion. Think again. Just in case you are lost or dislocated against your will, you will be found easily. At that moment, you wish you had the data implanted in your body as in a dog or a cat, in case you are separated from your credit cards. With permissible biometric data in the credit cards, no one can charge up your card. The credit cards, passports and driver's license may carry data on your (photo), eye color, IRIS, skin tone, floppy ears, proboscis-like nose, puckered lips... not for the merchants but for the Government agents, the latter can harvest biometric data from your credit card.
Now that human genes cannot be patented (news June 14, 2013), the cost of gene identification and DNA analysis will be cheaper.
The scientists can insert Slam-Dunk markers (fluorescent) on your DNA. The DNA will fluoresce on the screen. You will light up the screen like a glowworm or Christmas Tree. There will be non-invasive rapid DNA analyzers and readers everywhere. They can, in the future, analyze and read your spit for DNA in a matter of seconds or minutes. In the airports there will be Spit-N-Go security checks; the security personnel will keep you dangling in the airport departure lounge before your DNA is ready and before you board the plane. If the results are inconclusive, a buccal smear will do. If you are of the nervous nature, your sweating and fidgets in air-conditioned lounge or waiting area invite unwanted attention from the prying eyes. You might have to take a mild tranquilizer to quell your fidgets. Things will be so bad coming from the bad dudes and consequently from the security apparatus of a country, you will be glad you chose Spit-N-Go rather than No-Go at all. You shed your DNA in your spit, all body fluids and from the skin. If you try to fool the airport security with dry mouth by taking antihistamines or some such thing, they can swab your buccal cavity for DNA. Or they can ask you to tinkle. You will be so nervous you will tinkle unawares in your pants, which they can wring to get your DNA. They can take your hat, or any headwear and get your DNA from the shed hair follicles. If you reject all tests and are of the stone face, heart, mind and soul, they can take your comb or rake your hair with sterile comb for Dandruff-DNA. If you are the fastidious clean type, sport a baldpate and show no dandruff, they can lance your tender finger tip for blood-DNA. If you still reject all lawful requests for your DNA, they can confiscate your used toothbrush for your DNA. Dude, it is bad to walk around in the airport and the cabin with halitosis and odor-emitting sinus cavities. Man, it is hard to fight the law. Give up, dude; make it easy on yourself. If you pride yourself as a Privacy Nut and engage them in a physical altercation, they can scratch your face and recover your DNA from under their finger nails. If you went for personal services at the airport, they can get your DNA from the airport dentist, doctor, pedicurist.... If you are a stamp licker or use spit to turn pages or count bills (disgusting), they can confiscate your envelope, your book and or your wad of greenbacks. October 2013. NYPD recently matched DNA of Baby Hope (killed in 1991 at age 4 and discarded in a picnic cooler) to her mother's DNA from a licked stamp on an envelope. Now the dead child has a name Anjelica Castillo. The alleged killer was her cousin Conrado Juarez in 1991.
Of course you can demand a receipt for your greenbacks. Ladies, if you are the kind who uses spit to clean your daughter's face, they can swab your daughter's face for your DNA. Man, if you are a spit-and-polish type, they can confiscate your shiny shoes. If they smell vile cigarette smoke on you and or saw you smoking, they can legally appropriate your discarded cigarette butts for DNA. So it goes with drinking cups, straws, flatware.... If they saw you cleaning your ear canal with a swab, they can confiscate and extract DNA from the swab. Decency forbids me to divulge details of other methods of confiscating your DNA that you deposited in likely and unlikely places. Your ID card (SS card or credit card) will carry your DNA profile. A match will be made instantaneously on the bright screens. Credit card swipes in Supermarkets won't reveal your DNA profile. Courts will rule Privacy Issues will have to give, in the name of National Security.) A woman was recently convicted in India for murder after her EEG revealed she was very much familiar with the circumstances surrounding poisoning of her ex-fiancé. But it was only in June 2008, in a murder case in Pune, in Maharashtra State, that a judge explicitly cited a scan as proof that the suspect's brain held "experiential knowledge" about the crime that only the killer could possess, sentencing her to life in prison. The Brain Electrical Oscillations Signature test, or BEOS, was developed by Champadi Raman Mukundan, a neuroscientist who formerly ran the clinical psychology department of the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences in Bangalore. Functional MRIs (fMRI) are already in use to read thoughts and figure out our buying habits (neuromarketing). In the future, airports will be using invisible Infrared Beams to penetrate the frontal lobes to detect any lies, when a person is being questioned about his or her intentions. Forget about polygraphs, nervous ticks, sweating, clammy skin, fast heart rate, rapid respirations, shifting eyes... as the signs of lies. A light beam will stop the bad dude right on his tracks, before he boards. Be careful as to what you say in the Airports especially before the security personnel. If he or she asks what that long thing you have in your bag, don't say that it is a 'Lip Balm.' The person may not have been a Spelling Bee Champion Speller as the Indian-origin kids in USA winning year after year spelling bee competitions. Balm and Bomb are the same to him; immediately the rusty creaky wheels turn in his cortical mantle; before you know, you will be the epicenter of gun-toting Black Cat Commandos or some such outfit, whose member sports waxed handle-bar mustaches, weather-beaten face, Goliath body, Bull-dog face, sneering look, steely eyes and muscles, super-size ego, viselike grip, gruff voice and every thing that unbalances and frightens you half to death, and makes you lose control over your cistern and rectal ampulla. (Waxed mustache, testosterone-charged steely muscles, gargantuan body and ego and phallic symbolism of long-barrel gun are meant to intimidate and subjugate a perceived threat.) You shouldn't invite their attention by such careless, benign, yet ambiguous and often mistaken words; homographs, homophones, phonetic or sonic similitude; onomatopoeic words and sounds like Boom, Bam... with demonstrative outstretched overreaching hands. If you think you are a comedian, you chose the wrong stage for your budding talent. Don't let your children carry fake guns, water pistols... to the airport or anywhere. Children holding toy guns were shot to death while confronting a cop.
Andy Lopez was walking to his friend’s house in Santa Rosa, Calif. on Oct. 22, 2013 when two Sonoma County deputies spotted the 13-year-old boy in a blue hoodie carrying what they thought was an AK-47 assault rifle. Stopping the police car, the deputies chirped their siren and demanded that he drop the gun. Still holding it, Lopez started to turn around. A deputy, believing he was in danger, fired several rounds. Lopez was shot seven times and died on the scene. What the officers took for an assault rifle turned out to have been a airsoft gun that fires plastic projectiles.
Read more: http://nation.time.com/2013/10/25/toy-guns-deadly-consequences/#ixzz2ipKdR0v8
Sep 11, 2011. There may a new gadget in town whereby the brain is magnetized and the truth is pulled out of the brain; lies lie low; the brain and the larynx voice the magnetized truth. The magnetized brain may even show Truth waves in EEG.
LONDON: Scientists have found that magnetic interference with the brain makes it impossible to lie, a discovery they say could be the most effective way to extract information from crime suspects unwilling to tell the truth.
Estonian researchers found that stimulating part of the front brain with magnets alters the simplicity of lying.
The team found that when magnets were applied to either the right or left side of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, found directly behind the forehead, it makes a person to lie or tell the truth, depending on which side was stimulated. However, magnetic interference directed at another part of the brain, the parietal lobe, was found to have no impact on the people's decision-making , the researchers said.
"Spontaneous choice to lie more or less can be influenced by brain stimulation," study researchers Inga Karton and Talis Bachmann were quoted as saying by the Daily Mail.
December 2010. The Security is facing new problems with shoes, underwears, baby bottles, and myriad other things. Lately, the bulky Saris and the turbans have come under scrutiny. The diplomats wearing them have come under allegedly peering, prying, poking, groping eyes and hands and machines of security. In Indian mythology, Draupadi, a devotee of Lord Krishna was stripped of her sari by the villainous Dushasana. Bhagavan Krishna provided endless sari to counter the stripping by Dushasana. This is what the devout Hindus think of, when the Indian Lady ambassador was subjected to physical security clearance, though she gave her diplomatic papers to the officers. The Indian UN ambassador was asked to remove his turban for inspection. The Indians wondered what if Hillary and US Ambassador to India were subjected to similar search in Indian airports. Dept of Homeland Security has not yet given specific instructions and guidelines to Airport Security as to who are exempt from (intrusive) searches. We should not be excited about these searches; think of Senator Kennedy who was subjected to searches twice under republican watch. Think of world leaders and others who were the recipients of Pat Down, Put-down, Wand Exploration, hand swabs for bomb residue: Indian Defense Minister George Fernandes, July 2004; Nelson Mandela, July 2008; Former president Abdul Kalam, April 2009.... Don't be surprised if a turban is subjected to radiological examination, and other imaging techniques.
"In 2010, India’s U.N. envoy, Hardeep Puri,who wore a turban for religious reasons, was reportedly asked to remove it during an airport security check. Also that year, reports suggested that Indian ambassador Meera Shankar was taken to another room and searched because she was wearing a sari. Those events stung in India, and no doubt came to mind when this latest event dominated the headlines." -- By Swati Sharma December 18, 2013 www.washingtonpost.com
Jan 7, 2014
Great People are often misunderstood because they are ahead of their times.
The Evolution of Perception of Xhosa clan Mandela over decades: Though he remained the same. (18 July 1918 – 5 December 2013) Royal birth... a lawyer...anti-colonial politics...joined ANC...arrested for seditious activities...Communist party member...sabotage campaign against apartheid government...arrested and jailed for life...27 yrs in jail...released in 1990...with DeKlerk negotiated to abolish apartheid...lead ANC to victory...First Black president...New constitution....Many reforms...Truth and Reconciliation Commission...
Once denounced as a communist terrorist...Mr. Mandela was recertified as a noble activist...Nobel prize...Countries confer titles and stand in line each to adopt him as its own honorific son...Death...Leaders clog the airport to pay tribute to a man who was his own man but called seditionist, communist, saboteur, terrorist... Royal...Lawyer...Terrorist...prisoner...President. Foreign governments over decades sided with Apartheid Regime and later reversed their position, while Mandela earned his title Madiba, or Tata ("Father"); he is often described as "the father of the nation".--some excerpts from Wikipedia.
October 5, 2013.
As a matter of fact, the officers are kind, if they chose not to unwind the turban for examination. They are following the rules under difficult conditions, though they sympathize with the passengers. Underwear bombs and shoe bombs were already apprehended. The mules carry gastric and butt-hole condoms chock full of narcotics. What stops a person from carrying weapons in their cavities. that is why much maligned cavity searches are administered.
OGDENSBURG, APRIL 27, 2013 — City police got more than they bargained for Friday when a routine traffic stop netted an alleged drug dealer who police say was carrying 78 plastic bags of crack cocaine in his rectum.
What stops a butt-hole bomber with a wick sticking out of his rear end and waiting for a lighter or a lowly matchstick? Don't worry; Sergeant Shukloo, a retired military warrior dog now working for the Airport Authority will sniff him out. The sergeant (a Toy Poodle) loose on the job knows him without introduction as the POI, walks casually towards him as if he were one of the passengers, reverentially and unobtrusively circumambulates him sniffing the air around him in a wide circle, wags his tail up and down meaning yes, brushes his fluffy tail against foot, making the butt-hole bomber think he is waiting for his cuddle, and sits calmly looking at his handler. (The Toy Poodle like an innocent suckling child knows the smell but not its nefarious purpose. Think of omniscient Bhagavan Krishna, as a suckling child, killed the nursing Putana, who smeared her breasts with a poison with an intent to kill Baby Krishna at her breast.) That is where the intrusive proctologic examination comes in with justification. The agents do have gloves and Fleet Enemas in their black bags.
Sep 22, 2013.
Uninformed, ignorant and nothing-else-to-do adolescents, young adults and grown men regard turban and beard as a synonym to Ayatollah or Osama. The fashion now among men in NYC is to project a non-sectarian look: Shaven head, shaven face and upper lip.--Krishnaraj
This is what I do and recommend for air travel. Keep current with the latest recommendations.
1) The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to, or living in, a foreign country.
2) Travel light. Wear light, weather permitting. Bulky clothes invite attention as in a Department store; the employees think you are hiding something under them.
3) Wear slip-ons without socks during summer and in all clement weather conditions.
4) Indians travel heavy and take half the house on travel-- a bad idea.
5) If a plastic alternative is available, take them instead of metal items.
6) Put your Mangalasutra (मंगळसूत्र) or Thaali (தாலி), all your jewelry, change and metal items in one carry-on bag to avoid hassles.
7) Don't pick an argument or engage in unnecessary exchange of words with officers.
8) Comply with the instructions or forego flight.
9) Don't throw your weight around; it makes the officer more determined to follow the letter of the law.
10) Don't gift-wrap objects or gifts. Only you know what is in it.
11) Put food and drink in your stomach or garbage can before you go to security checkpoint, unless you are permitted to bring in meals.
12) Keep all loose personal items in clear zippered plastic bags.
13) Don't take sunscreen, lotion, shampoo, toothpaste, hair gel or beverages in checked-in or carry-on luggage.
14) Keep your prescription bottles with your name on the labels in the carry-on bag.
Mitra is his associate in his official duties. If you happen to notice a person with dropsy, ask him to seek forgiveness from Varuna, because the patient may have offended Varuna, the proof being his dropsy. He is quick to anger and yet melts with compassion and cures his petitioner. He does not have the wherewithal for all sicknesses and maladies of the world. He himself once suffered from erectile dysfunction and received herbal remedy from a Gandharva. He is associated with horses and ocean. The remedy made him the enviable stallion of all times. It was a one-dose remedy. (We have become a pill-popping society; we pop pills for this and that.) Take a back seat, Viagra, Cialis and the like. One dose of the herbal remedy cured him of his ED; that would put all ED companies out of business. He is the Lord of waters and rides an aquatic animal, Makara. Waters are his consort. Sometimes his wife Varunani gets tipsy and thus earns the name the goddess of wine and inebriation. Varuna cedes his power and prestige, according to the West, to Vishnu who assumes his portfolio. The West surmises that the Indo-Aryans were afraid of the god of the natives, Siva, who is the Yogi of all Yogis. He was Rudra before He became Siva. Rudra roars and explodes into a red flash as if he got a florid case of measles. The Indo-Aryans were afraid of Rudra. He was the Howler, the Ruddy One, the Rider of wild boar, and the father of Maruts (Rudras). You cross Him; you got a storm on your hand. They named the red god storm-god. I suggest that the meteorologists and hurricane-prone coastal states pray to Rudra so that He will render the category 3-5 hurricanes into innocuous breeze. Soon the Indo-Aryans embrace Rudra as their own because Rudra like Indra was a rain-maker. They somersault (go head over heels) to please and eulogize Him and get into His good graces; they called Him the Auspicious, Siva. The Indo-Aryans welcomed Dravidian God, Siva into the theistic brotherhood of elemental gods. He outshone them by zillion times. (Any one who has not read Saiva Siddhanta, in my opinion, is not a philosopher though he may be a Ph.D in religion and philosophy from a prestigious university. Primer in Saiva Siddhanta) The West says that Siva is a Dravidian God, whose body consists of all elements, which the Indo-Aryans worshipped; now you know how Siva took away all the elements from the elemental gods. Siva knocked the wind out of the Wind God of the Indo-Aryans: that is just one example. Siva is all in One. Listen to the Most Outrageous Claim (MOC = mock) of the mocking West: Siva is not native to India; Siva originated in Mesopotamia and came over the snow-capped mountains and decided to stay here in Kailas. Incredible indeed. Indra's sons were named Maruts (Rudras); it may be an instance of sycophancy. They have night-vision eyes. Go on, they don't need night-vision goggles. They move in darkness among friends and enemies without being seen, so that they can confuse, knock and whack the enemies dead. I am sure the military would like a battalion of invisible Maruts with night vision eyes to fight the wars. No one is yet to find out who hit the enemies of Maruts. The enemies die not knowing who or what hit them. In modern warfare, we need Maruts to fight our wars. (We have the next best thing, the night-vision goggles.) They are friends of Agni, the fire god and Vayu, the wind god. Wind and fire will do the job in war. The Maruts have teeth of iron. You thought James Bond character Jaws (portrayed by Richard Kiel) was the first one to sport stainless steel teeth. It is not custom-fitted as in Jaws. The Maruts have a better idea. The Maruts are born with iron teeth. (The modern-day Marut [man of iron teeth] is Lakshmi Mittal of Mittal Steel, who is buying and chewing up all the steel in the world.-- May/June 2006). Their weapons system is very advanced even by modern standards. They can hit with lightning and thunderbolt. When they are not fighting and killing their enemies, what do they do? Right, they drink Soma. Hard at that. Soma gives a double whammy: inebriation and hallucination. Indra considers the Maruts as his subjects. Their birth is a miracle even in modern times; the scientists of today can't even imagine what Indra did to the embryo of Diti. He split the embryo into 49 pieces. It is a fact that an embryo, a blastocyst can become more than one fetus. If someone has the right equipment (Indra obviously had a microtome that separated the cells of the embryo without damaging the cells.) to divide the embryo into 49 pieces, we can have 49 babies from one embryo. Take a backseat , modern science. Diti, the mother and the spouse of Kasyapa begs Indra to make them attendants of gods. He says, "so be it." The Maruts with such a proud history and ancestry enter an arena with the roar of lions, pizazz, and razzmatazz wearing robes of rain and blowing blasts of wind. Modern circus and Water Worlds can't even come close in imitating the Maruts. Coming back to Siva, the post-Vedic Indo-Aryans called the Yogin of yogins the god of destruction. They appealed to His good side and eulogized Him.
Note: Indians feel that the Indo-Aryans and Dravidians are one race like the white and brown rice. How is this for a change?: We all belong to one human race.
Seven Vyahrtis represent seven levels of consciousness, starting from the consciousness of Muladhara Chakra and ending in the realm of Superconsciousness of Sahasrara Chakra. They also stand for seven worlds: Bhur, the physical plane; Bhuvah, the atmosphere, sky or astral plane; Svah, heaven, the mental or astral plane; Mahar, the world of Saints; Janah, birth-world, a world of Siddhas and Kumaras beyond the Solar system and the world of birth of animals destroyed in cosmic fire; Tapar of seven sages (Saptarishis); Satya of Infinite Truth. Vaikuntha is the 8th plane, the abode of Lord Narayana, Krishna's devotees, and Kamala, consort of Narayana; Goloka is the 9th plane and the highest of all, the abode of Krishna, Radha, and Sridama (Krishna's friend).
Savitur in Gayatri Mantra refers to the sun, worthy of worship. Without sun no life as we know can exist; thus, sun is life and soul of this universe. All gods say that their eyes are the sun and the moon; thus worshipping the sun is worshipping God. During Sri Chakra worship, the fire, the moon and the sun are worshipped. Kalas (12) of sun worthy of worship are 1) Tapinī, 2) Tāpinī, 3) Dhūmrā, 4) Marīci, 5) Jvālinī, 6) Ruci, 7) Sudhūmrā, 8) Bhoga-dā, 9) viśvā, 10) Bodhinī, 11) Dhārinī, 12) Ksamā (heat container1, heat emanator2, color of smoke3, Ray producer4, burner5, luster6, smoky red7, grantor of enjoyment8, universal9, giver of knowledge10, illuminator11, patience and forbearance12. Dharini and Ksama refer to selfless qualities of sun which drinks up the ocean and showers it on earth in the form of rain.
Our body has all the elements in the universe and thus is a microcosm of the macrocosm. Paramatman is the source of Light and wisdom in us and imparts light to the sun, moon, stars, our individual soul. He resides in our spiritual heart as Light. We have three gunas (modes, qualities) running our life on earth. Sattva is Light, goodness, virtue; Rajas is motion and passion; Tamas is darkness, dullness and lethargy. Tamasa elements work against us while Sattva is an agonist and Rajas gives the direction to Sattva or Tamas. Sun stands for Light, intellect, memory, goodness, virtue and other auspicious qualities, which Rajasa and Tamasa gunas suppress and repress. In order to eliminate the suppressive elements and free the sun to give full expression in our body, we perform Sandhyavandhanam in the morning and evening. By facing the sun, chanting Gayatri Mantra to the sun, pouring water towards the sky, we destroy the negative elements that block the sun element in our body. Pouring water (Arghyam) from copper, silver or gold vessels is to drive the negative forces, as water is a purifying element. (Next time you see the Catholic or Hindu Rituals (all derived and copied from Tantrics of India), you know the salubrious effects and noble thought and idea behind them.)
Bhagavan Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita: 10.21: Of the Adityas, I am Vishnu. Of the lights, I am the radiant sun. Of the Maruts, I am the Marici. Of the stars, I am the moon.
Adityas are the 12 sons of Kasyapa and Aditi: Dhata, Mitra, Aryama, Rudra, Varuna, Surya, Bhaga, Vivasvan, Pusa, Savita, Tvasta, and Vishnu. Besides the above, Aditi bore 21 more children, 33 in all. These 33 children (Adityas) of Aditi are the progenitors of 330 million devatas. The 12 Adityas are collectively called Tushitas, Suryas, Dvadasadityas [(dva =2 + dasa = 10) =12] Adityas.
Savita is one of the Adityas, thus is Vishnu; Savitur, his consort is his radiant energy or splendor (Bhargo). Lakshmi, the consort of Vishnu carries different names and Savitur is her name in relation to Savita. Savitur reveals Savita; the sunlight reveals the sun. Lord Narasimha has three eyes: Sun the right eye, Moon the left eye and Agni the middle eye. The Sun and Moon came out of the respective eyes, according to Purusa Sukta. The sun should be worshipped everyday. If anyone eats without worshipping the sun, he is equal to the squiggly worm wriggling in the cow dung according to Vedas. The proponents of Surya Namaskaram (Sun worship) say it helps prevent diseases and deficiencies of the body such as heart disease, development of cataract, hearing impairment.... Once I went visiting with an Indian octogenarian who retired from Indian Military Service. I could not hear him or read the books he gifted me without my eye glasses. He read the book without glasses; NO, he was not wearing contact lenses. He heard me perfectly well without any hearing aid, though I could not hear him well without my hearing aid. He had no arthritis; his limbs and joints were supple and he was sitting in Lotus position without any discomfort. He pointed out to me that his health and comfort with his body were all due to Yogas (and sun worship). Poor me, I ambled down the staircase with my hearing aid and glasses in place holding on to the parapet wall by the steps; my joints were creaking and complaining.
There are many Sun Temples in India. One of the famous ones is in Orissa. Sūrya or Savitar is the Sun God; His daughter is Sūryā, who is abducted by the Asvins as their bride. Sur or Svar is to shine. Sū is to bring forth as in creation. We won't be here if not for the sun. Savitŗ is vivifier or animator. It is the source of light, wisdom, and dispeller of ignorance and darkness. Saura is the sun cult. The most famous Saura cult Temple is Konarak temple in Orissa. The Sauras wear red sandal paste on the forehead and red flower garlands and chant Gayatri. Rohita, the Red One, is another name for sun; His female counterpart is Rohini, the deity of cattle and the daughter of Surabhi and the mother of Kamadhenu, the cow of plenty. Rohini, the red star in the constellation of Taurus, is one of the 27 consorts of Soma, who stand for the 27 lunar asterisms or Nakshatras. Soma was so enamored with Rohini he neglected the other 26 wives who went home to their father Daksa. Soma changed his mind and asked for the return of his 26 wives, who came on condition that he would treat all of them equally; such was the promise extracted by Daksa. Soon Soma fell from grace and exclusively doted on Rohini; he was struck with phthisis, a wasting disease (most likely tuberculosis). The Adityas, the sons of Aditi, twelve in number representing 12 Solar months cured him of his disease. Rohita and Rohini are the allegorical king and queen of heaven, earth, space.... Etasa is the dapple horse, which draws the chariot of the sun. Tarksya is a white horse that draws the Sun's chariot across the heaven. The goddess of dawn leads the white horse at dawn. A troop of seven celestials, under the aegis of Vishnu, occupy the sun dispensing cold, heat and rain as appropriate for the season. The twelve Adityas appear as 12 suns at dissolution and thus the sun is said to have 12 souls. Iranian hvare, Hittite šurias, Greek helios are the sun.
Savita marries Prsni, who begets three girls, Savitri, Vyahriti, and Trayi and four boys, Agnihotra, Pasu, soma, and Caturmasya (Mahayajnas, the three Great sacrifices).
Vyāhriti = utterance; declaration; mystical utterance of the names of the seven worlds, bhur, bhuvar, svar, mahar, janar, tapar, satya.
Maha vyahriti: utterance of the names of the Great three worlds, bhur, bhuvar, and svar.
Utterance of Vyahritis prepares the chanter of Mantra to rise from the world of marginal spirit to a world of aspirations and expectations and further on to a world of Grace and spirit.
The presiding deity of Gayatri is Supreme Brahman, Devi, Vishnu, the Sun, or Saguna Brahman. The mantra is suitable for all asramas.
Ombhūr-bhuvah-svah = Om, world, atmosphere and heaven (Vyahrtis)
tat savitur varenyam = THAT Light (sun) adore
bhargo devasya dhīmahi = Splendor divine meditate
dhiyo yo nah prachodayāt = Intelligence who our inspires
Om, world, atmosphere and heaven, we meditate on the divine splendor as the adorable Light (Sun). May our intelligence be inspired.
The following translation is adapted from the published discourses in Tamil by Mukkur Lakshmi Narasimhachariyar and other sources.
Vedas say that Gayatri is Vishnu: Gayatriye Vishnu. The believers say that the daily reciter of Gayatri Mantra has Brahma Varcas in Bhrumadya, meaning Brahman's brilliance or power. Here Brahman is Vishnu. Thus the face is the reflector of one's Tejas. Bhrumadya = between the eyebrows. Not all can notice the Tejas; only those who already have that Tejas can see it. Vedas eulogize GAyatri: Ojasvathi Gayatri, Balasvathi Gayatri.
(Gayatri with splendor, strength). This Slokam is invoked before meditation of Gayatri for full measure of benefits. Acharya recommends seeking a realized Guru in initiation of Gayatri mantra. BrahmOpadesam involves initiation during Upanayanam (Sacred thread and beginning of the study of Vedas) with Gayatri Mantra; the initiate takes the second birth with Gayatri as another Mother and the Guru-initiator, as the father and mother.
Gayatri is the universal benefactor of followers of all religions, persuasions and beliefs. O Gayatri! You are endowed with strength; You have Tejas; You have brilliance; Where are my Tejas and strength, if you are not standing by my side? All is You, O Gayatri.
Gayatri is the universal aggregate of all powers and brilliance, all gods, all Mantras, all Yantras; such is the greatness of Gayatri.
Sastras say that Gayatri should not be chanted loud (and yet I can't resist the temptation of listening to Gayatri sung by Anuradh Paudwal) Loud chanting earns poor grades and low gains; Sotto voce begets greater benefits; lipping Gayatri Mantra earns the highest reward. There are five stops in the course of reciting the Mantras; there are five faces of Gayatri Devi. 1st stop is after Om; 2nd stop after Bhur, Bhuva, Svaha; 3rd stop after tat savitur varenyam; 4th stop after bhargo devasya dhimahi; 5th stop after dhiyo yo nah prachodayat. Chanters get Brahma Varcas (Tejas, power, splendor, brilliance); that is why it is called Brahma Sutra. Gayatri's Tejas gives the Light to Solar, Lunar and Stellar Mandalas and that light has spread to all that shines. It is the Light in the eye, the heart and all the lights you see. Gayatri is so supreme that it is beyond the Gunas. It is like the sun casting its light on the high and the low, the pure and the impure, the sacred and the sacrilegious and yet it does not take on the character of the object it shines on.
Here is simple way of breath control and recitation of Gayatri for the one in a hurry, wanting to reap its full benefits.
A simple Sandhyavandanam Pranayama is performed as follows: block the right nostril by the right thumb, breathe in with the left nostril for the duration it takes to mentally say the Gayatri mantra. Block both nostrils, hold the breath and say the Gayatri; breathe out through the right nostril as you block the left nostril for the duration it takes to chant Gayatri.
Gayatri Mantra: 1st round of Mantra, mental recitation should span the duration of inhalation; same applies for 2nd round with retention of breath and 3rd round with expiration. That means one should mentally recite the whole mantra once with inhalation, once with retention and once with exhalation. Three grand rounds of a total of nine recitations are considered suitable for a person in a hurry. Inhalation and mental chanting takes 10 seconds; retention and exhalation take 10 seconds each. If you face the sun and do it, it is even better.
Om -- Bhur, Bhuva, Svaha -- tat savitur varenyam-- bhargo devasya dhimahi--dhiyo yo nah prachodayat-. You may stop to catch the breath after each round, if you cannot do all nine rounds continuously. Performing all nine rounds in one session does not usually pose any problem.
Upasana, the Puja rituals.
The cardinal features of Upasana (Puja) are as follows:
1) Bhutasuddhi: Cleansing Bhutas or gross elements of the subtle body.
2) Nyasa: By the power of Sound, Mantra and digital pressure, he invokes the spirit to descend on his body.
3) Pranayama: Breath Control.
4) Dhyana: meditation.
5) Chantless mental worship.
6) Japa or chanting of Mantra.
Once body is cleansed and purified, the divine enters the body of the priest, who is deity himself. The priest has to destroy his papam (sin); next he purifies his subtle body by Pranayama (breath control). He goes on to purify the five elements in his body (bhutasuddhi). The priest activates the Kundalini fire in Muladhara Chakra and takes it through upper Chakras to Sahasrara Chakra for union with the spirit. This rise of Kundalini fire power destroys the gross and subtle body, as it were, of the priest. Now the spirit has descended on his body (of the priest) devoid of any worldly taints. The priest is now an ethereal body, devoid of Sthula and Suksma Sarira, and occupied by the spirit; thus, the priest has acquired Divya Sarira (divine body). The deity has taken residence in his spiritual heart. For the divine spirit to pervade his body and organs, he performs Nyasa.
(Nyasa follows Butasuddhi.) Nyasa is impressing of the body with fingers and mental appropriation or assignment of various parts of the body to the tutelary deities, according to Monier-Williams. Consider it as a painless form of acupuncture (Digipressure, digital pressure) that infuses divine power where the fingers apply pressure. Here you do not use Acus (needle as in ACU-PUNCTURE) but digits come in handy for application of touch and pressure. Digital application (Nyasa) is accompanied by chanting of Mantra and visualization of specific Devata or Bija (seed) Mantra. Sequential touching of the body parts in a geographic progression depends on the type of Nyasa. Once Nyasa is complete, the priest transfers the divinity from inside him to the idol, which is known as Avahana (invitation). By Mudras (gestures), he infuses life into the idol (Pranapratistha). Once the worship is over, the god is dismissed from the idol (Visarjana or Udvasa) and Samhara Mudra (expressive gesture of dissolution). Visarjana = discharging, dismissal. Udvasa = leaving empty, uninhabited. The idea of invitation and dismissal of divinity with regards to the idol sounds apparently ridiculous (on the surface) because god is everywhere and He or She does not need invitation or dismissal. Avahana and Visarjana are confirmation of his presence everywhere.
Some additional points: After the deity is bathed, dressed, decorated and jeweled, the priest keeps all articles near him. He performs ritual acamana, or purification of the mouth before (or during) he utters the mantra. He makes a samkalpa (intention, resolution) for welfare of any of the entities of the world: that is the purpose of worship. (What a noble thought.) Consecration of water follows by invoking in it the seven holy rivers of India. This Arghya (water offered reverentially to gods or devotees) is used wherever water is necessary for rituals. In Acamana, water is sipped with chanting of three mantras from the hollow of the right palm formed by flexing the middle three fingers and extending the thumb and the fifth finger. The Mantras in eulogy of Vishnu-Krishna are AcyutAya namah, AnantAya namah and GovindAya namah.
Pūja: In Hindu religion, Puja ceremony is the most common. Pūja = honor, worship, reverence shown to the deity both in public and private, homes and temples. At home Puja is conducted either by man or woman as the ceremony demands. In temples it is offered on the devotee's behalf by the priest. There is no priestess. There are some internal variations. The general principles and parts of Puja are Avahana, Asana, Svagata, Padya, Arghya, Acamana, Madhu Parka (deity offered a mixture of honey, sugar and milk in a vessel), Snana, Jala, Bhooshan abharanasya (offering of clothes, jewels and ornaments), Gandha, Akshatas (grains of rice colored by saffron), Pushpa, Dhupa, Dipa, and Naivedya, and Sandana (offering of flower, Incense, Light, Food, and Sandal paste).
In Puja, the Tanmatras and the gross elements are symbolized by Flower, Incense, Light, Food, and Sandal paste as depicted below.
Tanmatras Sound Touch Form Taste Odor Gross Elements Ether Air Fire Water Earth States of matter Ethereal Gaseous Igneous Liquid Solid
Symbols of Elements
Pushpa = Flower DhUpa = Incense DIpa = Light Naivedya = food Candana = Sandal
Rites of worship are prescribed by the Agamas: Nitya, mandatory; Naimittika, situational, periodic, or occasional; Kamya, desire-fulfilling. There are strict set of rules to follow and any infraction makes him a Brahma RAksasa (demon). Guru supervises and enforces these rules. Upacara (worship) has sixteen plus components. There are many internal variations.
Central steps of puja include: 1) acamana, water sipping for purification; 2) Ganapati prarthana, prayers to Ganesha to remove obstacles; 3) sankalpa, declaration of intent; 4) ghanta, ringing bell, inviting devas and dismissing asuras (demons); 5) avahana, inviting the Deity ; 6) mantras and dhyana, meditating on the Deity; 7) svagata, welcoming; 8) namaskara, obeisance; 9) arghyam, water offerings; 10) pradakshina, circumambulation; 11) abhisheka, bathing the murti (the deity); 12) dhupa, incense- offering; 13) dipa, offering lights; 14) naivedya, offering food; 15) archana, chanting holy names; 16) arati, final offering of lights; 17) prarthana, personal requests; 18) visarjana, dismissal of the deity--farewell. Also central are pranayama (breath control), guru vandana (adoration of the preceptor), nyasa (empowerment through touching) and mudra (mystic gestures). Puja offerings also include pushpa (flowers), arghya (water), tambula (betel leaf) and chandana (sandalpaste). --atmartha puja: Karana Agama, v. 2, states: Atmartha cha parartha cha puja dvividhamuchyate, " Worship is two-fold: for the benefit of oneself and for the benefit of others." Atmartha puja is done for oneself and immediate family, usually at home in a private shrine. Parartha puja: "Puja for others." Parartha puja is public puja, performed by authorized or ordained priests in a public shrine or temple.
Those who are interested in details can go to http://www.vishuji.com/sandhya_worship.htm
There are variations in procedure and ritual observances.
1. āvāhana, Avahana: invocation of the deity; holding the thumbs against the root of the ring fingers (Mudra)
2. Āsana, Asana: the manner of sitting forming part of the eightfold observances of ascetics. Offering a seat to the deity.
3. Pādya, padya: Offering water to wash the feet.
4. Arghya: Worthy of a hospitable reception; water given to a guest; objects of worship. Copper, silver and gold vessels are desirable to hold water.
5. ācamana: Rinsing the mouth with water: water for that purpose. ceremonial sipping of water.
6. Snāna, Snana: Religious lustration of idol with water.
7. Vastra: Raiment; offering garment for the idol
8. Bhūsā: Ornament and decoration of idol.
9. Gandha: Fragrance or Sandalwood paste applied to the idol.
10. Puspa: Offering flowers to the idol.
11. dhūpA, Dhupa: Incense or making smoke from aromatic gum or resin.
12. Dīpa, Dipa: Lamp; waving lamp
13. Aksata: Offering unhusked barley-corns
14. Naivedya: Offering victuals to a deity.
15. Tāmbūla, Tambula: Betel leaves and nut.
16. Pradaksinā, Pradaksina: Turning the right side towards the idol; circumambulation from left to right, as a mark of respect.
Aratti: dissatisfaction, discontent. This ceremony is carried out by a married woman to ward off evil. A lighted wick sitting in an oil lamp placed on a circular metal plate is waved at eye level when a person of high station is welcomed into a house, convention or gathering. Aratti is performed also in temples for idols. Aratti idea was practiced in one form or another by the Romans and the French. The Romans used the statue of the god Fascinus on the triumphal car of the returning conqueror to ward off evil eyes. The French peasants were known to pull their children out of sight to avert evil when a stranger passed by. This is avoiding Drishti Dosham (sight fault = illness from evil eye, effect of the evil eye, pollution by sight.) Aratti is the preventive or counter measure for the evil eye. Aratti or Arti is performed for temple idols, children, elephants, horses and other domestic animals. This practice extended to automobiles. When you go to the Bridgewater Balaji Temple in Bridgewater New Jersey or Sri Ranganatha Temple in Pomona, NY, you will notice Indians bringing their new cars for Vahana Puja (Car Worship), to ward off evil eye, receive blessings, and insure divine protection of the car, occupants and others from accidents and loss of life and limb. The priest comes out to the car in the specially marked area of the parking lot to perform the ceremony. Another extension of Arati is to plant a pole with lime-painted pot at the top in the gardens and cultivated fields to prevent and counteract evil eye. The evil eyes fall on the painted pot and not on the crops; the crops and produce are saved.
Akshatas: (unhusked barley corns) Akshta in Sanskrit means unbroken or unhusked. By tradition and convention husked rice colored with saffron and vermilion is used. There are two kinds of Akshatas: 1) colored rice consecrated by Mantra 2) simple colored grains. Mantra-infused grains are used in Pujas and special occasions. The latter in a cup is offered as a sign of politeness and auspiciousness; the invited guest takes a few grains and apply them on the forehead.
Pavitram: Filter, strainer, an article that purifies, purification by Darbha grass. Ring of darbha grass worn on the fourth finger of the right hand on religious occasions. Darbha = Kusa/Kaus grass--sacred grass; Poa cynosuroides. The officiating priest wears the Pavitram on his finger before he starts the ceremony. Darbha Pavitram is used to establish mental, moral, and spiritual purity and proper ambience in the place of worship, religious and other ceremonial functions and for meditation. Pavitrotsavam is performed to maintain the spiritual purity of the temple.
Catholics celebrate the Festival of Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary commemorating the presentation of Jesus and the purification of woman in the Temple according to the Law of Moses. The old custom is modified to 'Churching woman' which means to perform a church service of thanksgiving for a woman six weeks after childbirth. This dual function is known as Candlemas.
a church festival, February 2, in honor of the presentation of the infant Jesus in the Temple and the purification of the Virgin Mary: candles are blessed on this day.
The presentation of Jesus (any baby) in the temple is a Jewish custom of thanksgiving to the God who dispatched an angel of Death to destroy the Egyptian first-borns and spared the Jewish first-borns.
Ex 13:1-3 1The LORD said to Moses, 2"Consecrate to me every firstborn male. The first offspring of every womb among the Israelites belongs to me, whether man or animal."
The first-born son belongs to God, is offered to God and redeemed with five shekalim paid to the priest, the representative of God.
Woman is considered impure for six weeks after the birth of the baby; Mary had Jesus Christ in the winter solstice and was ready for purification on February 2nd. In Hindu families, pollution lasts for forty days after the birth of a girl and thirty days in case of a boy.
The Pagan Mother Goddess becomes the Virgin back again. (Mother Goddess has three forms: Virgin, Mother, and Crone. The Mother Goddess (Tripurasundari) is Bala, a girl or adolescent, Tripurasundari, a Mother, and Tripurabhairavi, a postmenarchal crone.)
Immersion in Hinduism and Judaism is a purificatory ceremony. Jewish brides (not all) visit Mikva (ritual bath) a few days before their wedding; she follows this practice monthly until her menopause. Ritual immersion takes place on the seventh day after the end of menstruation; sexual relations can resume after such an act. Mikva is a requirement before Sabbath. The tank (ritualarium) is a two feet square and six feet deep, filled with 191 gallons of natural water and is part of Synagogue or other buildings. The modern Mikva is a salon with hairdryers and hairdressers, cosmeticians, and manicurists on call. A woman must present herself to Mikva site, completely scrubbed and cleaned with bare clean skin and hair with no jewelry. All body parts including hair on the head must come into contact with purifying water. Three dips are required. While standing in the water after the first good dip, the woman recites the Immersion Blessing: Thou be praised, O Lord our God, King of the universe, who has sanctified us with His commandments and commanded us concerning the immersion." This is the Mantra of the Jews.
Water as a great purifier.
Among Christians, water baptism is equal to spirit baptism and rebirth.
Baptism is a ceremonial immersion in water, or application of water, as an initiatory rite or sacrament of the Christian church. RHD
Baptism is repentance, immersion in the name of Jesus Christ, forgiveness of sins and receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38).
Leviticus15.18: The woman also with whom man shall lie with seed of copulation, they shall both bathe themselves in water, and be unclean until the even.
New International Version
When a man has sexual relations with a woman and there is an emission of semen, both of them must bathe with water, and they will be unclean till evening.
Numbers 19.13: Whosoever toucheth the dead body of any man that is dead, and purifieth not himself, defileth the tabernacle of the LORD; and that soul shall be cut off from Israel: because the water of separation was not sprinkled upon him, he shall be unclean; his uncleanness is yet upon him.
While some in the West deride the maddening Hindus bath in the Ganges for washing away the sins, here is something to ponder:
Acts 2.38: Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
All of the above indicate that all cultures believe in physical and spiritual purity before they approach God and water is the great purifier.
Yagnopavitam or Sacred thread ceremony and Gayatri
Coming back to Hinduism, all ceremonies need initial purification; the sacred Thread (yagnopavitam or âßø--Punnul in Tamil) ceremony (Yajnopavita Samskara, Pavitra Aropahanam--Upanayanam of the Brahmin boys is one example. The cord has three strands, which stand for Cit, Acit, and Isvara; three knots represent the trilateral relationship of these three Tattvas; each strand has nine filaments, which represent Prithvi (earth), aap (water), tejas (light), vayu (air), ether, prana (breath), atman (individual soul), antaratman (Inner Soul), Paramatman (Supreme Atman, God). The cord is made of cotton hand picked by a Brahmin of the same sect and spun into the sacred thread. Once the Brahmin boy is married, six to nine strands take the place of three strands. The three strands with mandatory knots indicate that he has gained control over his body, mind and speech. The ceremony is Upanayanam, a purificatory rite by which the young Brahmin boy (some other castes too) is purified, attains a second birth, and is allowed to study Vedas. It takes place 8 years after conception for a Brahmin, 11 years for a Ksatriya (warrior class) and 12 years for a Vaisya (trade and agriculture). The day following the ceremony witnesses the investiture of the cord.
During the ceremony, the boy's mother wraps a loincloth around his waist and gives him the following advice.
My son, you should regard all woman up to the age of 24 as your mother; you should maintain celibacy, study sacred scriptures, and meditate on Gayatri Mantra which will be given to you today. May the Universal Mother Gayatri give you protection.
The Guru invests him with the sacred thread and chants the Mantra.
This holy thread is of Supreme sacredness. Prajapatis (primary progenitors) have blessed this thread. Wearing it over your body and shoulder confers longevity. The Yajnopavitam (sacred thread) will endow you with strength and radiance.
This ceremony of initiation and investiture gives him the privilege of second birth and thus makes him the twice-born (Dvija) at the age of eight, which in essence tells him that a transformation has come upon him rendering him eligible to study Vedas, the revelations. The three threads and or knots stand for many triunes or triads: Brahma, Vishnu and Siva; Sarasvati, Lakshmi, and Kali; the three attributes of nature and people, Sattva, Rajas, and Tamas; three letters of Om, A, U, M; past, present and future; three states of the body, gross, subtle and causal; three states of consciousness, wakefulness, dream sleep and deep sleep; three worlds, heaven, earth and netherworld; three Nadis, Ida, Pingala and Susumna and three feet of Gayatri. The three important Nadis in the body are Susumna, the most important and the other two, Pingala (right) and Ida (left) Nadis. Kundalini Devi along with Prana rises through Susumna Nadi to reach Sahasrara Chakra for union with Siva. Kundalini Power. Since ego is sacrificed, the thread derives its name from Yajna (Sacrifice) and is called Yajnopavita.
The Brahmana boy wears white cotton thread; the Ksatriya, red hemp; Vaisya, yellow wool. White Cotton may satisfy all.
(Brahmachari [student bachelor] wears one set of three strands; Grahastha, (householder) two sets of 3 strands; Vanaprastha (forest recluse), three sets of three strands; and Sannyasi (the renouncer), one or four sets.) The thread is worn on the left shoulder and goes diagonally to the right side of the chest under the right arm: this pattern of wear is Upavita, which (the lower loop) should not descend below the navel line or ascend above the nipple line. The thread should be hung over the right ear while answering calls of nature, so that it is kept pure. Praciniviti: The sacred thread hangs over the right shoulder and under the left arm, when the Brahmana performs libations (Tarpanam) to forefathers (pitrs). Niviti: The sacred thread is worn on the neck like a chain or garland when he performs Tarpanas for human beings.
Tarpana = libations of water to gods, rishis and manes; satiation of gods and deceased persons.
The priest dons him with the thread and gives him the Gayatri Mantra. The affair is more elaborate than what I mentioned here. The young initiate goes to beg for food, while the fire of Yajna continues. He approaches woman and says, "Om bhavati bhikshaam dehi." (O good woman, please give me alms (food.) To the male donor he says, Om bhavaan bhiksaam dehi." Once the alms are given, the recipient says, "Om Svasti." Svasti = may it be well with thee.
The primary knot is Brahmagranthi, the knot of Brahma. There are three Granthis (Junctional points, Knots, Junctions, hurdles): Brahma, Vishnu and Rudra Granthis. Granthis are equated to the levels of consciousness. Brahma Granthi of Muladhara (and Svadhistana and Manipura) Chakra is physical consciousness; Vishnu Granthi of Anahata Chakra is the Sphere of the Sun and therefore of Light, the beginning of Spiritual Consciousness; The Rudra Granthi of Ajna Chakra is the sphere of the Moon, the center of Spiritual Consciousness. The Brahmana boy with his initiation, study and practice of kundalini Yoga goes from human consciousness, strives towards spiritual consciousness and blossoms out in spiritual consciousness.
The thread is exchanged for a new one once every four months and in case of death or birth in the family with attendant purificatory rites. The old thread is removed after the new one is in place.
Pavitram is the centerpiece of many ceremonies: Garbhadana, pregnancy ceremony; (Nāma karma, naming ceremony 12 days after the birth; Anna prasana, weaning ceremony at 6 months of age (Judaism: A great feast was held when Isaac was weaned at two years of age; that is late weaning!); Chaula, head-shaving ceremony; Simanta, purificatory ceremony of parting the hair of woman at 6-8 weeks of pregnancy.
tatsavitur varenyam bhargo devasya dhīmahi
dhiyo yo nah prachodayāt—
Om, earth, atmosphere, and heaven, we meditate on the adorable glory of the radiant sun; may he inspire our intelligence—translation by Dr. Radhakrishnan.
Gayatri is three feet long with eight syllables in each.
Om = AUM (Brahman, the One, Supreme God or Atman)
Bhur-bhuvah-svah = earth, atmosphere, and heaven
tat = that (referring to Savitri, God)
savitur = sun
varenyam = adore
Bhargo = radiance, splendor
devasya = divine
dhīmahi = meditate
Dhiyo = intellect
yo = who
na = ours
prachodayāt = beg, entreat, ask for
Om earth, atmosphere, and heaven, we meditate on the divine splendor of the radiant sun. We plead with Him to inspire our intelligence (author's translation).
Sandya (junctional [transitional time zones] prayers—sunrise, and sunset) is performed three times a day. A simple Sandhyavandanam Pranayama is performed as follows: block the right nostril by the right thumb, breathe in with the left nostril for the duration it takes to mentally say the Gayatri. Block both nostrils, hold the breath and say the Gayatri; breathe out through the right nostril as you block the left nostril for the duration it takes to chant Gayatri.
The presiding deity of deities, Gayatri is Supreme Brahman (Paramatma), Devi, Vishnu, the Sun, or Saguna Brahman. It is suitable for all asramas. The seven Rishis, Visvamitra, Jamadagni, Bharadvaja, Gautama, Atri, Vasistha, and Kasyapa are the seers of the seven rhythms or vyāhrtis. Vyahrtis: mystic utterances. In relation to Gayatri, Bhur, Bhuvah and Svah (earth, atmosphere, and heaven--the cosmic space between the sun and the polar star.) are three of the seven Vyahritis or Lokas (worlds) of the cosmos. (The Vyahritis are Bhur, Bhuvah, Svah, Mahar, Janar, Tapar and Satya.) The presiding lesser deities are Agni (Fire god), Vayu (Wind god), Savitr (sun god), Brhaspati (the celestial Guru), Varuna (the god of waters), Indra (the chief of gods), and Visva deva (the Cosmic Deity). The seven lines in the following invocation depict the seven worlds and planes of existence with their respective presiding deities, all of whom are under one Supreme Diety, the Cosmic Purusa. The deities are invoked to help us attain the higher spiritual worlds in their domain and realization.
Gayatri Mantra is adapted to eulogize and invoke many other deities: Ganesa, Vishnu, Siva, Rama, Krishna, Durga, Lakshmi, Sarasvati, Sakti, Sun, and Guru.
Sandhyopaasanaa (sandhyopasana) = sandhya + upaasanaa = junctional time + worship. Junction = morning, noon and evening; worship at dawn, noon and dusk. Sandhyaavandana (sandhyavandana) = sandhya + vandana. Vandana = adoration.
Gayatri Nyasa are of two types: Karanyāsa and Anganyāsa. Karanyāsa is touching by fingers and palms in various places and meditating on planets and celestials. Anganyāsa is perceiving God or Goddess in different parts of the body. It helps in meditating on different Chakras located in different parts of the body. Each part of the body presided by a deity protects that part of the body. After Anganyasa, the whole body is suffused with divine energy which radiates and purifies wherever he goes. In Karanyasa the grace and blessings flow out of the hands and fingers of the Guru.
Karam = hand; Anga = body parts.
The palm and the fingers are a book by themselves. Different disciplines see their own cartogram in the lines, whorls, loops, and arches. The five fingers represent ether, air, fire, water, and earth (Mahabhutas or great elements). Thumb is Brahma; Index finger, Ego; middle finger, Sattva Guna; the ring finger, Rajasic Guna; the fifth finger, Tamasic Guna.
Venus occupies the base of the thumb; Jupiter, the base of index finger; Saturn, the base of the middle finger; Apollo, the base of the ring finger; and Mercury , the base of the fifth finger. The space between the base of the thumb (Thenar eminence) to the wrist is Venus Mount. The opposite hypothenar eminence is the Mount of the Moon. Between the two eminences is the cup of the palm, the region of Rahu; Ketu is between the Mount of Moon and the Mount of Venus. There are two regions of Mars: one between Mercury and Apollo and the other between Venus and Jupiter.
Some examples of Karanyasa, invocation of deities and religious finger gestures and positions done with right and left fingers at the same time and palms.
These are based on Gayati Mantra.
tat savitur varenyam = THAT Light (sun) adore
bhargo devasya dhīmahi = Splendor divine meditate
dhiyo yo nah prachodayāt = Intelligence who our inspires
Here is the Gayatri Nyasa as done during Sandhyavandana.
Invocation of deities in fingers and palms.
Submitting to the power of Vishnu, bring the thumb over the index fingers forming circles. The thumbs overlaps the index fingers in this procedure forming two circles, as the chanter invokes Lord Vishnu in the index fingers (for protection).
varenyam. visnvātmane tarjanībhyām namah.
Tarjana = threatening finger (index finger).
Varenyam. Salutations to the Supreme Soul Vishnu, whom I adore and invoke in the two index fingers.
Overlapping the thumbs over the middle fingers forming a circle, the chanter invokes Rudra-Siva in the middle fingers.
Following the same procedure, the Sandhyavandana chanter invokes Transcendental principle in his ring fingers and Lord of wisdom in the fifth fingers.
The chanter brings the right palm over the left palm and later the back of the right palm over the back of the left palm and invokes the all-pervading God on both sides of his palms.
(By invoking the deities in the fingers and palms, the chanter surrenders himself to the deities, who are the protectors of the fingers, palms and their functions. Now you know why the pianists, violinists, surgeons, typists, flutists, computer users and others need to do this invocatory gestures to protect their fingers and palms and the whole body. If they would do this, our soldiers may have less problems with loss of limb and life.
Now we come to Anga Nyasa, invocation of deities in body parts for protection.
Anga Nyasa (taction of body parts) is application of ritual taction over the heart, forehead, crown, shoulder with the right or appropriate hand.
Touch the Anahata (heart) Center and chant,
Om. tat savitur. Brahmatmane hrdayaaya namah.
Om that Savituh. Brahmah in my heart, salutations.
(I meditate on that Light of lights and creator Brahma in my heart. Salutations.) Presto Chango! your heart is now protected.
In like manner, the chanter meditates, touches and asks for protection of the forehead from Lord Vishnu, the crown from Rudra, the shoulders from Tattvas, and the eyes from the Light of lights. He invokes God for the third eye of wisdom and touches between the two eyebrows. He places his opposed palms above the head, and expels evil vibrations by saying 'phat' and simultaneously clapping four times. phat = onomatopoeic mystical syllable; begone, crack, get lost.
Now let us explore the inner mystical meaning of Gayatri. Sandyavandanam is chanted with Om preceding each word of Gayatri with Pranayama (breath control).
Om = The universe of sound, the word of God.
Om Bhūh = God is eternal.
Om Bhuvah = God is the creator.
Om Svah = God is independent.
Om Mahah = God is worthy of worship
Om Janah = God has no beginning.
Om Tapah = God is the Light of Wisdom.
Om Satyam = God is Truth.
Om Tat = That Eternal God.
Savitur = Creative principle of Light manifesting through sun.
Varenyam = Supreme God adored by all gods.
Bhargo = That Light is splendor and effulgence.
Devasya = That Light is Divine.
Dhīmahi = We meditate (he is the object of meditation.)
Dhiyo = Intellect
Yo = who
Nah = our
Pracodayāt = inspire
Om Āpo = Om waters (He who rescues us from the karmic waters.) (Here is a scientific thought; Karmic waters is Causal Ocean from where life originated. Life on earth is not a dandy bed of roses. Rescue from life of bodily misery [from birth, old age and death; from colds to cancers--all ills of the body and not of our soul] is the goal of life on earth. Yogis know what heaven is: Life of Bliss in Spirit with pristine soul and without the putrid-prone body.)
Jyotih = He who is the Light of lights.
Raso = He who is the essence in everything.
Amrtam = He who is the nectar of immortality.
Brahma = That almighty God.
Bhūr Bhvah svar = He who is the creator of earth, atmosphere and heaven.
Om = May he inspire us with intellect and enlightenment.
Kriyas (Actions) As you chant do the accompanying actions appropriate to the Mantra.
Om = The universe of sound, the word of God. Say the mantra and touch the appropriate part of the palm and fingers. ipsilateral = same side). phalanx: finger bone separated by the crease(s). distal = the third phalanx away from the palm. proximal = the first phalanx close to the palm. Chant the mantras once with appropriate finger movements (kriya). Chant the mantras seven times without kriyas.
Om Bhūh: touch base of the ring finger with the ipsilateral thumb.
Om Bhuvah: Thumb to the proximal phalanx of the fifth finger.
Om Svah: Thumb to the middle phalanx of the fifth finger.
Om Mahah: Thumb to the distal phalanx of the fifth finger.
Om Janah: Thumb to the distal phalanx of the ring finger.
Om Tapah: Thumb to the distal phalanx of the middle finger.
Om Satyam: Thumb to distal phalanx of the index finger.
Om Tat savitur varenyam: Thumb to the middle phalanx of the index finger.
Bhargo Devasya Dhīmahi: Thumb to the proximal phalanx of the index finger.
Dhiyo Yo Nah Pracodayāt: Thumb to the proximal phalanx of the middle finger.
Om Āpo Jyotih: Apply tips of index, middle and ring fingers to the right eye.
Raso'mrtam: The above three fingers to the left eye.
Brahma Bhūr Bhuvah Svar Om: The above fingers to the third eye.
Gayatri Mantra has three parts: praise, meditation and prayer.
After the depicted sequential religious finger tapping with accompanying mantra chanting, enter into a state of silence. Utter the Gayatri mantra without the Kriyas. This will open your third eye. Complete the procedure by saying Om Sāntih three times.
Tat Savitur Varenyam = That Light Adorable (Praise) That thou Art. Adore THAT Light.
Bhargo devasya dhīmahi = Splendor divine meditate (Meditation). Meditate on the divine splendor.
Dhiyo yonah pracodayāt = Intellect who our inspire. (Prayer) Who inspires or illuminates our intelligence.
The Mantra advances all the essential qualities of God irrespective of affiliation: 1) Om, 2) Bhuh = earth, 3) Bhuvah = atmosphere, 4) Svah = heaven, 5) THAT = God, 6) Savitur = Light, power, 7) Varenyam = adorability, 8) Bhargah = splendor, 9) Devasya = Divinity.
Gayatri, the mother of Vedas (Veda Māta) has three parts, powers, qualities or expansions: Gayatri, Savitri, and Sarasvati. Gayatri is the mistress and controller of the senses; Savitri, the mistress of Prana or life-breath; and Sarasvati, the presiding deity of speech. Gayatri exists in each one of us in all her forms. Chanting Mantras augments the qualities of the senses, life-breath and speech.
Gayatri has five faces which are an euphemism for five qualities: 1)Om; 2) the Mahavyahartis-Bhur, Buvah and Svah; 3)tat savitur varenyam--Adorable Light; 4) bhargo devasya dhimahi--Divine radiance; dhiyo yo nah pracodayat--Illuminator of intelligence. All these qualities we realize when we praise, meditate on and offer prayer to Her. She is also the presiding deity of the five Pranas. This prāna energy is as primal as Tapas, OM, light and water, which were present at creation or projection of Prakriti. Akāsa is the primal stem substance and Prāna is the primal stem force. All forces originate from prāna and all forces subside in prāna. Udana is the grandfather, Viyana is the father and Apana is the grandson of Udana. (up breath, equal breath, down breath.)BG04
the seed the maha vyahartis sambandha (relationship) abhidheya (meaning is surrender) prayojana (purpose) om bhuh, bhuvah, svah tat savitur varenyam bhargo devasya dhimahi dhiyo yo nah pracodayat
Bhūr Bhuvah Svah represent the Kundalini Chakras at three levels of existence of the human: at the lowest human of existence in the lower chakras, the middling existence in intermediate Anahata and Visuddha chakras and the highest spiritual existence in Ajna and Sahasrara Chakras. They represent body, mind and soul. Tat Savitur Varenyam: That adorable Light is present always and beyond Time. Bhargo devasya dhīmahi: Its radiance and effulgence are so powerful that it can lift the darkness of the soul. Dhiyo yonah pracodayāt: Let the Divine Light dispel the spiritual darkness and bring in intelligence, wisdom, discrimination, and awareness. Sun, Light, splendor, darkness are used as analogy. When the sun rises at dawn it removes darkness; likewise when meditation brings on the Inner Light, it dispels the darkness of the soul and augments intelligence. Gayatri mantra cures diseases of the body, mind and soul; removes all three miseries, exogenous, endogenous, and Theogenous (Adibautika, Adiatmika, and Adidaivika); fructifies all desires; bestows grace and boons; and confers intelligence, wisdom and discrimination. The word Theo-genous is coined by me. Gayatri instills all good qualities and eradicates all bad ones.
Taittiriya Upanishad says that the four Vyahirtis or expansions become sixteen in all because each one (Bhuh, Bhuvah, Suvah and Maham) become sixteen vyahirtis: Example Bhuh has four expansions: the World, the Fire, the Rg Verses and the inbreath.
Taittiriya Upanishad 1.5.1-5
Entity #1 and its Expansions Entity #2 and its Expansions Entity #3 and its expansions Confers greatness to the other three entities #4
Mid region (atmosphere)
The Yonder World
Vyana-- Diffuse Breath
Vyahirtis or Expansions: The four become fourfold.
For the man on the go, Gayatri Mantra can be chanted any time: before awakening, breakfast, lunch, supper, and sleeping and while showering. It gives peace, tranquility, and happiness to body, mind and soul. You chant the Mantra in triplicate at a time. Chanting the most secular and yet uplifting Gayatri is suitable for all irrespective of their differences. Praise, meditation and prayer are applied to Light and not to any particular God. If you are a Hindu, that Light is the sun, Brahman, Gayatri Devi. If you are a Jew, Light is Adonai; Christian, the Lord; Muslim, Allah.
The sun is the medium of worship, adoration and salutation. "we meditate on the adorable glory of the radiant sun; may he inspire our intelligence. " Dawn and dusk are ideal times for meditation. Constant practice of Gayatri mantra expunges sins and karmas and thus obtains moksa (liberation) for the aspirant. According to Manu, the author of the laws of Manu, and a progenitor, the sins committed in the day are destroyed in the evening by this Mantra and the nocturnal sins by morning meditation. A secluded part of the house, banks of the river, temple, ocean shores are some of the ideal places for meditation. Meditation done early in the morning when the stars are still visible is the best form; dawn and sunrise meditations are less efficacious and yet beneficial. It is done before meals on the empty stomach. During catastrophic and extraordinary times, chanting the Gayatri Mantra is sufficient. Mere chanting brings tranquility; chanting with knowing the meaning brings peace and tranquility; chanting with knowledge and faith brings the most benefit, the Grace of God. In the morning and evening the aspirant faces the sun, east and west and north in the noon. South is not a favorite direction since you will be facing the Lord Death in the south.
This mantra is pleading with God to bless you with the Light of wisdom and intelligence so that you will lead a sattvic (virtuous) life to attain moksa eventually. But people do use this mantra for obtaining earthly goods and services. This glorifies God as Light (Let there be Light...). He is the Light and the source of all light in the universe. There are three places the light is present: 1) God the Primary source of Light, 2) the stars, heavenly objects, the eye, all objects that shine or emit light and 3) the Spiritual Heart of the individual soul.
One may memorize the mantra by repeating it loudly and clearly 36 times: This is Vaikhari Japa. Sabda or Sound. This is the least beneficial form of prayer.
One may mutter the mantra Sotto voce 36 times; this is Upamsu Japa. This is a more beneficial form
Chant the mantra mentally in Anahata Chakra, the place of Madhyama sound; this is Madhyama Japa. Sabda or Sound. This is more beneficial than the last form.
The best form of chanting is LIPPING the Gayatri Mantra.
You may see the mantra in colors in Manipura chakra; this is Pasyanti or visual sound.
You may sense a high frequency sound which does not stir or produce vibrations; this is Para Nada, mostly perceived by Yogis.
This mantra is passed on from Guru to pupil, and father to son. Now that it is available in broadcast, music, print and books, one may use it to regularly to obtain its benefits: intelligence, power, understanding, illumination and blessings.
Bhūr Bhuvah Svah Earth Atmosphere Heaven Past present Future Morning Noon Evening Tamas Rajas Sattva Gross Body Subtle Body Causal Body
Take a bath, shower or wash your hands and feet.
If you worship Gayatri as Mother Goddess, keep a picture of Her.
If you worship Gayatri as the Light of God, meditate on sun god.
If you worship Gayatri as Brahman (formless God), meditate on Ajna Chakra.
Sit on a mat placed on a hard surface.
Look at the lighted flame of a lamp or candle
Visualize a flame in the Ajna center, the midpoint between the eyebrows.
Sit facing in the proper direction; assume lotus position (padmasana). TMTM03.
Have a rosary of 108 beads and a head bead made of Tulsi, Rudraksa or sandalwood.
Let the place of meditation be clean and simple.
If you have a sacrificial fire, you pour butter after chanting svaha and after you repeat,
bhargo devasya dhīmahi
dhiyo yo nah prachodayāt.
Svaha = hail, hail.
This Mantra has universal application to fulfill all wants and needs with slight modifications depending upon the Ishtadevata (the deity of choice).
If the family desires a child, they may chant the following divine formula (Mantra) to fulfill their desire. Just add the Bija Mantra yam at the beginning after Om.
"Omyam yam yam bhūr-bhuvah-svah
bhargo devasya dhīmahi
dhiyo yonah prachodayāt."
The couple must take a breath, hold the breath, mentally chant the mantra and breathe out. Repeat the Mantra again and again. yam is the Bija (root or seed) mantra of Varuna, the god of waters and the presiding deity of genitalia. Supplication to him and chanting the mantra will bring the desired results.
Rosaries are used in Japa (muttering prayers). Counting the Japa by the tip of the thumb brings eightfold merit; by the Tulasi or Rudraksa beads infinite results. Tulasi is the favored bead for Vasinavites; ivory for Ganesa; Rudraksha for the Saivites and Mother Goddess. The thread used in the rosary has its own merit: cotton brings realization of Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksa; white thread brings peace and tranquility; red attracts people; yellow fulfils selfish desires; black brings wealth. Brahmin's usual choice is white; Ksatriya's, yellow; and Vaisya's, black. Red thread is for all classes, castes or varnas.
The rosary has to have the look of a cowtail, tapering from the largest to the smallest bead; the head bead with a tassel should be the largest. Immersion by a Guru in Panchagavya, made of five liquids (milk, yogurt, butter, honey and water, purifies the beads. The Guru chants the sacred mantra, Sadyojāta Mantra. Sadyojata = this instant + born or brought into existence; newly born. This mantra gives the aspirant an instantaneous new spiritual birth.
(Sadyojata (Creator), Isana (Ruler, Revealer, Grace giver), Aghora (reabsorption or involution), Tatpurusha (Obscurator), and Vamadeva (preserver) are the five names of Siva.) Sadasiva is the Grace giver (grace = anugraha).
Tatpurusha looks east; Sadyojata looks west; Aghora looks south; Vamadeva looks north; IsAna looks upwards. The first four revealed the Vedas and Ishana revealed Agamas. Sadyojata = Brahma, the creator; Isana = Sadasiva, the grace giver; Aghora = Rudra, the destroyer; Tatpurusha = Mahesvara, the obscurator; Vamadeva = Vishnu the preserver.
The Guru worships the rosary and infuses energy into it by invocation of Devi, who is of the form of wisdom and a giver of joy, peace and blessings. He invokes the Mother Goddess and eulogizes her as the bringer of blessings of all gods and the revealer of Truth.
One should assume the Padmasana (lotus position), hang the beads over the medial three fingers (middle, ring and the little fingers) and roll the beads one by one by the thumb making sure that the beads do not touch the forefinger, which represents the individual ego of the aspirant. The Sadhaka should sit straight with the head, neck and chest in one vertical line, concentrate his mind (and sight) on a picture, symbol, light or even a body part of the Lord, close the eyes, and gaze on the tip of the nose or the glabella (Bhrū madya, midpoint between the eyebrows). You may direct your mind's eye to any one of Anahata, Ajna or Sahasrara Chakras. You may meditate on Light or Sound.
Once the chanting over the 108 beads are over, one should not crossover to the other side. Head bead (Meru bead) is an absolute stop; one may rotate the rosary in such a way that one may start counting in the reverse direction. Silent mental chanting can be combined with rolling of the beads and Kumbhaka (retention of breath).
In this Kali Yuga, when meditation becomes difficult for any reason, one can engage in Kirtana, singing the glory of Ishta Devata.
When we pray to God, we use the sound-syllable OM. OM is the first sound, first thought, Brahman and God. OM consists of three letters: A U M, the beginning, the middle and the end. AUM includes / contains the past, the present and the future and also is beyond time itself. When Prajapathi was meditating on the three worlds, three vedas originated, earth, atmosphere and sky came into existence, and the syllable AUM came about. "Just like the leaves are held together by its stalk, so is the speech held together by AUM". - Chandyogya Upanishad. AUM is the basis of any thought, spoken or written word and more. AUM also represents the Hindu Holy Trinity, A: Brahma, U: Vishnu, and M: Siva. AUM knows neither fear nor death. Men, gods and asuras take refuge in AUM. Sing it sotto voce and have no fear of anything. In Sanskrit A and U combine to form O sound and M gives that resonance. OM is the syllable, the utterance of which helps a soul to penetrate Brahman proportionate to the degree of belief in it, detachment, abrogation of desires and contact with sense objects, and awareness. Its power is diluted by exegesis - critical evaluations. Tirumular says in Tantra Four, Verse 885, that A became the world, A and U became Sakti and Siva and AUM became the Light (Jnana = Wisdom). M became the Maya.
OM is Bija Manta or Seed mantra and thus, the progenitor of all other mantras. All sounds (Phonemes) of all languages, alphabets, morphemes, words, and sentence take their origin from OM. OM vibrates in all sounds, syllables and words. The transcendental sound of OM is audible only to Yogis. Utterance of OM proceeds from the navel, vibrates and ends in the nostrils, where the final intonation (Anusvaara / after-sound) takes place, which is represented by Chandrabindu ( a dot over a line or crescent). Bindu and Nada find their repose in Chandrabindu. Bija mantra, on the surface does not carry any outward meaning but it is mystic and the body of a devata or god.
( Another explanation: Aum (Om) is the mystic syllable intonated audibly, sotto voce, or mentally; It is the fusion of three sounds beginning with aw (as in paw) originating in Muladhara Chakra, vibrating as oo (as in coo) in the Anahata and Visuddha Chakras and resonating as mm (as in mm, that is good) in Ajna and Sahasrara Chakras. It is Primal Mula Mantra and thus a non-secular Mantra. Ām (variation of Aum) in Tamil means "Yes, expressing assent.")
In Prasna Upanishad, there is a two-way conversation between Guru and disciples. Questions are asked and answered. The sound AUM is equated to the Higher and Lower Brahman, aka nameless or attributeless Brahman, and personal Brahman, Isvara. Meditation on each and all component(s) of AUM brings benefits to the meditator. Component A guarantees a quick rebirth soon after birth among men of high caliber, and greatness associated with austerity, abstinence and faith. Meditation on the two components, A and U, guarantees a sojourn on the moon in all its greatness with a return to earth. Meditation on all three components, AUM, guarantees oneness with the light of the sun, shedding of all sins, compared to the shedding of the skin by the snake, and an entry in to the world of Brahma greeted by saama chants. (The world of Brahman, equated to Hiranyagarbha, is a collection of individual souls, who at one time or another are sent back to the earth in embodied forms, after their terms in satya loka expire.) From the world of Brahma, he goes one step above, gets vision of Isvara, qualified Personal Brahman and thereby attains eternal liberation from the world of samsara. Meditation on the three components are better than meditating on individual components because AUM as one triad guarantees liberation and immortality in the world of Isvara, and A,U,M individually guarantees only rebirth in this phenomenal world.
In Maitri Upanishad Chapter six, the Brahman is depicted as three-footed, and three-lettered according to the three letters of the syllable AUM. The three-footed Brahman is rooted above and the branches are the ether, wind, fire, water, earth etc. This upside-down tree is Asvattha or fig tree. The import is that Brahman is rooted in heaven and the material world draws sustenance from Brahman. One has to cut asunder all attachments to the material world in order to attain Brahman. AUM depicts Brahman in terms of gender, light, the holy triad, mouth, knowledge, physical elements, time elements, physical sustenance and growth, thought, and breath.
Gender Masculine, Feminine, and Neuter Light Fire, Wind, and Sun Holy Triad Vishnu, Brahma and Shiva Mouth Three sacrificial fires Knowledge Three vedas, Rg, Yajus and Saaman Physical Elements Earth, ether and sky Time Elements Past, Present and Future Physical Sustenance and Growth Food, Water and Moon Thought Buddhi ( Intellect), mind, and Self-sense / Ego Breath Praana, Apaana and Vyaana - Breath, Downward breath, Pervading Breath
There was a rivalry between the Devas and Asuras - the gods and the demons - born of Prajapati. The demons always fouled up anything done by the gods. The devas took refuge in and possession of OM and used it as breath via the nose. The demons vitiated the breath with evil and so the breath has become sweet and foul for the nose. The Devas meditated on OM as the speech, the eyes, the ears, the mind, and the breath by mouth, but they were all vitiated by the asuras with the result that we speak truth and falsehood, see beauty and ugliness, hear what should be heard and what should not be heard, entertain good and bad thoughts, and experience dissipation of life breath just like a clod of earth shatters on impact on a stone wall. ( Khandogya Upanishad1.2.1-8) This not only tells us the importance of chanting OM, but brings into focus the sattva (divine) and tamas (asuric) gunas / modes of behavior of an individual.
Upanishads mention that OM is the bow, the jivatman is the arrow and the Brahman is the target. A bow must be strong and tensile in that the faith is strong, one has depth and breadth in vedic wisdom and life lived by sattva sharpens the arrow with devotion. The mind is the tip of the arrow. Silence and stillness are the goals, that are Param-Brahman
Yogi goes from sound to silence. He rides on the sound waves of OM and his goal is silence. Sabda-Brahman and Param-Brahman
There are two kinds of knowledge: 1: Sabda-Brahman 2: Param-Brahman. Param-Brahman is superior and Sabda-Brahman is only a means to Param-Brahman. Knowledge of Upanishads and Vedas, sacrifices, rituals etc are essential for growth and development of the soul or atman to a finite stage. After that stage, they have to be given up in the same spirit of detachment from desires at early stages of development. Here you stand alone by your own self. No props and no support. Self stands alone. You are dead to the world, figuratively. You are divested of everything that you owned, be it material or knowledge. Names and forms do not matter anymore. You ride the OM sound waves of Sabda-Brahman until you reach the Param-Brahman, when the sound-syllable OM falls into silence. Sabda-Brahman or Brahman of Sounds consists of all book knowledge including rituals, sacrifices and vedas. (Soundless Brahman is superior to Sound Brahman.) But the latter is the preliminary step before attainment of Soundless Brahman. When Soundless Brahman is attained, the names, forms, books, rituals, sacrifices, prayers, hymns etc fall / should be abandoned . It is like saying that the raft should be abandoned once you reach the shore. It is like saying that the chaff should be abandoned or thrown away, and that one should try to get to the rice. It is said that the learned man, after acquiring jnana and vijnana (knowlege and intuitive wisdom) through the study of sacred scriptures, throws away the scriptural books just like a farmer (grain collector) throws away the straw after collecting the grain. Ramana Maharishi says it as follows: You remove the thorn from the sole of the foot by another thorn and when done, throw away both thorns. At this stage of development, rituals, vedas, sacrifices have to be abandoned at the dawn of higher realization of param-Brahman or Soundless Brahman. There is stillness. There is silence. That is the goal, that is absorption, that is Bliss. It is like the spider climbing on its own thread to reach the higher space; so also the yogi goes up on the sound thread of OM and reaches his destination, silence - Param Brahman. He rides on the sound waves of OM and his goal is silence. He goes from sound to silence. He attained Vijnana -divine, intuitive, realized wisdom. He sheds names and forms. Speech is nothing for him. Books are for the birds. There are no hymns and no prayers. Where he is, there is no fear, there is no sorrow, there is tranquility, there is silence, there is bliss.
This Vijnana, by its virtue, is a nondual state, where there is a fusion of self with the param Brahman. This is also known as Turiya, the fourth state. There are four levels of consciousness. The four states are:
1: Waking state - perception mode (Gross Body)
2: Dream sleep - mode of images and imagination (Subtle Body)
3: Dreamless Sleep / Deep Sleep - Mode of Self or conceptualization - (Causal Body)
4: Turiya. Beyond-Deep-Sleep State- Transcendent, spiritual, pure consciousness. (Non-Dual State).
Another way of saying 1: Wakefulness 2: REM Sleep, Rapid Eye Movement Sleep 4: NREM Sleep -Non Rapid Eye Movement Sleep 4: TURIYA.
In all these states, ego and consciousness seem to be the main factors by their presence or absence.. Ego or ahankaara is the dominant mode in the wakeful state. Consciousness in all three states is homogenous. In deep sleep, there is no perception; that negative perception indicates that there must have been prior experience of events, which were missed during sleep; that knowing of negative perception in deep sleep indicates active consciousness.
1: Waking State: A of the A U M. The 1st Sound, A. In the wakeful state, the Indriyas, prana, manas, buddhi, ahankaaara (Ego) - Citta are all operative. This state is what we know as life and biological functions. Accordingly, the consciousness is projected outwards. The Self (1st part) enjoys the gross matter.
2: The Dream Sleep: U of A U M. the 2nd Sound, U. The consciousness is turned inside. The ego is still operative as per Ramana.. The Self (2nd part) is dreaming and enjoys subtle objects.
3: Deep Sleep: M of A U M. The 3rd sound, M. No ego play here. The sleeper desires nothing that he usually desires during the waking state. No dreams occur. The Self (the 3rd part) is undifferentiated consciousness, and enjoys bliss, being bliss itself. The lower self is absorbed in the Highest Self . Buddhi is in a potential state, and in a state of suspended animation.
4: Turiya: Silence following A U M. The 4th part of the Self. It is not undifferentiated. It is without attributes. No ego play here. There is quietness (Santam), Peace and Bliss (Sivam), without-a-second (advaitam). This is the realization. This is absorption. This is beyond Kaivalya - Splendid isolation - and more. This is Samadhi. This is oneness. This is SatChitAnanda. It is beyond time, space and form. It is beyond consciousness. It is the source. The four parts of the Self are compared to the cow's feet. And as said earlier Self is OM.
The four components of Self is the same four components of A U M and Silence. Silence that comes after AUM is the fourth component / Turiya. Now we arrived at soundless Brahman. To reiterate: A is the waking state. U is the Dream State. M is Deep Sleep. Turiya is the fourth state. All four components form a unit or syllable or a sound byte of Atman-Brahman - Sound Brahman / Soundless Brahman. AUM-Silence = AUM-Turiya = Dual to Non-dual state. AUM state is a dual state for the self, and Turiya, the fourth dimension inducts the self into a non-dual state. You become one with Brahman.
To paraphrase Ramana Maha Rishi: When ego is extinguished, the sage is freed from waking, dreaming and deep sleep. All that remains is Turiya, a noble state, first, last and all- transcendent. Ramana says that the first three states are grounded in the self, but the Turiya is Being-Awareness and non-dual. When in Turiya, you know that the first three states are false. Know thou that Turiya is Waking Sleep. Know thou that Turiya is Grand Sleep, that knows no waking. Know thou that Turiya is Eternal Wakefulness untouched by slippery sleep. In the dream sleep and waking , it is the ego and not the atman that sees a world of fancy, but that ego sees nothing in deep sleep.
Brahma Sutra (3.2.10) In a swoon it is half attainment ( ardha: half; sampattih: attainment) meaning that it is half deep sleep and half death.
It gives an idea of the state of swoon, as in a person who is whacked on the head with a club. He is neither in deep sleep nor dead. He is not in deep sleep, because he cannot be awakened like a sleeping person. He is not awake, he is not dreaming, he is not in deep sleep 100%, and he is not dead 100 %. This state is between deep sleep and death and that is half attainment so far bliss or death is concerned . He has one foot in death and one foot in half bliss. His karma dictates as to which way he is going to take. This is declared not as a fifth state, since the factors pertaining to swoon are not clearly compartmentalized. For Ramanujah, it is a half-way meeting with death. For Nimbarka, it is death by half measure.
Sleep, and dreams according to Upanishads. The thoughts expressed here are from the Upanishads.
States of consciousness: In this world of names, forms and images, it is all perception, whether it is true or false. This consciousness, is wakefulness - Gross Body. Ego is in the dominant mode. It is I against you and the world. Perceptions are distorted and images are falsified. Reality and Truth are submerged and ignorance and ego are in full display. The three gunas, sattva, rajas and tamas oscillate. One time you are sattvic, next moment rajasic and the next tamasic. Your mind, thoughts, speech and deeds are caught in the rise and fall of these three gunas. The pristine Self is the chronicler, and a spectator. The lower self enjoys matter just like the bird eating sweet and sour fruits.
Then comes the dream sleep. Subtle Body. The Self (2nd part) is dreaming and enjoys (experiences) subtle objects. Still the ego is operative. Never taking rest or repose. The mind dreams impossible dreams. It is said that the dream sleep is microcosm of heaven and hell. The ego is the director of all these moving images. The hopes and the fears, the pleasures and the pains come to surface in the form of images. The world of images are real to him. He cries; he laughs; he writhes; he rolls; he enjoys and he suffers. They are unreal, but they are real to him. He talks like a learned brahmin, and he acts like a powerful king. He is high and he is low. He thinks he controls. He dreams of blindness, lameness, defects but the atman is not dreaming. But he knows not. He suffers, according to Upanishads. Self is not killed when body is killed. His fears during wakefulness translate into images during his dream sleep. That is ignorance.
Then comes Deep Sleep: Causal Body. The Self (the 3rd part) is undifferentiated consciousness, and enjoys bliss, being bliss itself. It comes close to a state of splendid aloofness and isolation of kaivalya. Finally the ego has taken leave. The self asserts itself. It shines. The sleeper is absorbed in the self which is communing. He is serene; he is calm. This is atman, this is Brahman. This is immortal, this is fearless Brahman. The speech is on hold; the names and forms are on hold; the sound is on hold; and the mind and its thoughts are on hold. What a repose? What a tryst with Self. Then suddenly there is fire. The sparks fly. He is awake. The juices start flowing. From atman, all the vital breaths flow to their destinations. His consciousness returns; he rises; and he now knows life as he knew before he went into deep sleep.
Turiya, Spiritual Transcendental consciousness Turiya is without any attributes. It or He is the Self. Objective consciousness is absent and its seed also is absent. That is what is meant by Wakeful Sleep by Ramana MahaRishi. Turiya is present and functional in the perfected ones, even when they are awake. In Turiya, there is an irreversible union with Brahman. There is Oneness with Brahman. There is a permanent Metaphysical Unity.
Ignorance is the mire of humanity; the one who rescues us from Avidya or Ignorance is Guru. Gu is Ignorance and Ru is light, the remover of ignorance. The medium of removal is Supreme Spiritual knowledge; the mediator is the Guru. He sheds light where there is darkness. Since Guru is the purveyor of spiritual knowledge and the dispeller of spiritual darkness, he is second only to Brahman. There are variations in the interpretation of Guru. considered in its parts: g, r, u. The g has a function of granting of Siddhis (supernatural powers); the r has the function of expunging the sins; the u portrays the latent unmanifested energy of Vishnu.
Guru came into place when Mantras, Tantras, Yantras had to be committed to memory for practice and posterity. The individual soul is full of spiritual ignorance (avidya); the accomplished Guru is full of spiritual knowledge; they found a mutual fit which leads to Mukta (liberation) of the individual soul. Guru knows the Pinda, the Rupa, and Rupa atitia (body, form and what is beyond the form). Pinda refers to the embodied soul fed by Pinda, food. The form is Saguna Brahman, the visible form of Brahman: Siva and Vishnu. Rupa-Atita is what is beyond the form and refers to Parabrahman, the formless, the nameless and the attributeless. Take Jesus Christ, the son of God; he is the visible form; his Father, the God in heavens, is the invisible formless God. The Pinda is you and me, who know we have a body but ignorant of the immanent soul in us, which is an Amsa (fragment) of the Father.
When Mantras, Tantras and Yantras were uttered, practiced and propagated, there was a need for a Guru or teacher to hold the repository of knowledge in memory. They also became the intermediaries between God and man, the Light and darkness. The Gurus brought the Light of spiritual knowledge and removed the darkness that shrouded the soul. The First Guru in this world is Siva and the First Pupil is Vishnu in the name of Matsyendra, the teacher of Yoga.
The path of Guru is Guru-Krupā-Yoga (Guru-compassion-Yoga), the Path of Guru's Grace.
Hymns by Sankara to Guru
Isa, the Supreme Lord, having been pleased with Bhakti and Vaidika Lakshana of his votaries in their very many previous births, incarnates out of compassion as Guru in a living and breathing form, inculcates in them the knowledge of the ultimate Reality and helps them cross the ocean of misery of this earthly existence.
Vaidika Laksana = Vedic marks = worship according to Vedic Scriptural injunctions.
Tirumanthiram Verse 139:
Illumination (of the soul) is to see the Holy Form of Guru, to chant Guru’s Holy name, to hear Guru’s holy words, to reflect on the form of Guru.
Guru is the intermediary between God and man; He is the representative of God on this earth; between God and Guru, Guru takes the precedence.
Verse 1. One's Sariram (body) may be of great form, Kalatram (wife) beautiful, dhanam (wealth) as big as Mount Meru;. If the mind is not attached to the Lotus feet of the Guru, of what avail is that?
Verse 2. Wife, wealth, sons, grandsons, home and relatives: all these you may have. If the mind is not attached to the Lotus feet of the Guru, of what avail is that?
Verse 3. Satravidya (Scriptural knowledge) may be on one's lips; one may be Kavitvadi (exponent of poetry); one may write good poetry and prose. If the mind is not attached to the Lotus feet of the Guru, of what avail is that?
Verse 4. In foreign lands, I gain honor and fame; in my own country, I am blessed with wealth; I am of inimitable good conduct. If the mind is not attached to the Lotus feet of the Guru, of what avail is that?
Verse 5. Kings and emperors adore his feet; but if the mind is not attached to the Lotus feet of the Guru, of what avail is that?
Verse 6. Virtue and generosity brought me fame and rewards from all over the world. If the mind is not attached to the Lotus feet of the Guru, of what avail is that?
Verse 7. The mind does not dwell on Bhoga, Yoga, stallions and horses, the face of the beloved and riches; If the mind is not attached to the Lotus feet of the Guru, of what avail is that?
Verse 8: My mind does not abide in neither the forest, nor the house, nor the future accomplishments, nor the body, nor the precious. If the mind is not attached to the Lotus feet of the Guru, of what avail is that?
Verse 9. Man of virtue who studies this Guru Astakam (Octad on Guru), and whose mind abides in his sayings--whether he is Yati (ascetic), Bhupati (Lord of the world), Brahmachari (student), or householder-- realizes his desired goal of union with Brahman.
A Guru must have certain qualifications:
He must be a householder with wife and children well versed in Tantric Sastras and in Mantra. Guru must belong to the same locale of Sisya.
He must not be father of Sisya, Ascetic (Vanaprastha--Forest-dwelling recluse), or Sannyasi.
Tantra Sastra says that a recluse is incapable of giving meaningful directions and instructions to a Sisya, if the Guru has no idea of the mundane world of Samsara he and his Sisya live in.
A Guru should have mastery over Jnana leading to Moksa. A Sisya should abandon a Guru incapable of imparting Jnana.
The Sastras mention that the testing of both the Guru and Sisya are essential. Depending on the caste of the Sisya, he stays with the Guru in the latter's house for one to four years. The Guru puts him through the wringer in such ways that he comes to know of the pupil's body, mind, speech, devotion, character and compatibility. One year is the minimum necessary for a Guru to evaluate his pupil of Brahmana lineage; two years for Ksatriya; three years for Vaisya; four years for Sudra. A greedy or timorous Guru invites the wrath and curse of Devata; initiation performed by him has no value. Mutual testing of Guru and Sisya as to their fitnmess by each other is a dynamic process. If it does not stand the test of the Sastras, both are reduced to the state of Pisaca (a dirty spirit).
That the Guru should be married and have children is mandatory in Tantric System as opposed to the prevailing stipulation in Catholic religion, though there are many ceremonies common between the two. Woodroffe is of the opinion that ceremonial aspect of Tantric system spread from India to other parts of the world. Only a Guru, with a full-fledged family and Jnana roiling in the ocean of Samsara, is capable of navigating the rough seas and offering Real Jnana to Sisya. Others like Sannyasis, Vanaprasthyas, and recluses who are not family-centric play by different rules and therefore are not capable of offering Jnana to Sisya.
One source tells that there are three kinds of Gurus: Pasu Guru, Vira Guru, and Divya Guru; three kinds of Mantras: Pasu Mantra, Vira Mantra and Divaya Mantra; three kinds of Bhavas: Pasu Bhava, Vira Bhava, and Divya Bhava. Divya Bhava is the best of all and awards Siddhis to the Siddha; Vira Bhava is mediocre; Pasu Bhava is the least worthy. Vira Bhava Sadhakas perform rituals, pujas, charitable works, Yatras to Pithas (holy places), control of senses and Kulachara. Vira Bhava by itself does not offer Mukti (salvation); one has to step up to Divya Bhava for eventual Mukti. Divya Bhava consists of 1. meditation on the form, 2. thinking of Devata as pervading the whole world with her Tejas (Light and energy), 3. considering that the world and Atma are her body. A Pasubhava consists of thinking of Devata, chanting of Mantras, prayer and worship progressing to Vira and Divya Bhava.
A pupil or Sisya should have the following qualities:
1) Good upbringing, pure mind, strong body, and steadfast mind.
2) Pursue Dharma, Artha, Kama, and Moksa.
3) Proficient in Vedas, Sastras, and knowing their essence.
4) Pursue Kula Dharma, be good to and serve all living beings, and work for enduring objectives.
5) Serve the Guru by body, mind, thought, speech, deed, and money
6) Should rise above passions, laziness, anger, and useless mundane knowledge.
Initiation of Sisya comes after he serves his Guru for one year and Guru decides that he is ready for initiation. Guru makes sure that the seed that he sows hits the fertile soil and not the rock (of a Sisya).
Bhagavad Gita and Meditation according to Bhagavan Krishna as told to Arjuna
6.11: In a clean place, with a firm seat neither too high nor too low covered with Kusa grass, deerskin and a soft cloth layer upon layer (one on top of another in that order, cloth on the top, deerskin in the middle, Kusa grass in the bottom) (continued)
6.12: with the mind one-pointed, controlling the mind, the senses, and the activities, sitting on the seat, he should practice yoga for self-purification.
6.13: Holding the body, the neck and the head straight and still, looking at the tip of his nose, but not looking all around, (continued)
6.14: With serene mind and fearless, firmly resolved in celibacy, with subdued mind, the yogi should sit concentrating his mind upon Me and only Me as the Supreme goal.
Seclusion and a clean safe place during meditation are necessary; it could be in the house or outside with clement weather conditions. An object or objects that augment one's spirituality should be present in the area: an image of God in the form of idol, picture, photo, along with holy book, candles, incense, flowers and fruits. As your spirituality becomes stronger, the external props become less and less necessary. The seat made of Kusa Grass, deerskin and soft cloth obtund and cancel out earth vibrations reaching the mind; you must rise above the earth plane of Muladhara Chakra to Anahata Chakra and higher to experience spirituality. In case Kusa grass and deerskin are not available readily, one could use folded sheets in their place. Use of Tiger skin may be illegal in certain parts of the world. Lotus posture is the common asana assumed during meditation.
Lotus is a sacred symbol of purity in Hinduism. The blossoming of the Lotus in Kundalini Yoga at various levels attests to the flowering of spirituality. Lotus is a sign of fertility, power, life, and dominion. The roots, mud, slime, grime and stem of the lotus flower are under the surface water; the leaf floats in the water and yet water rolls off its surface. The slimy mud represents the building blocks of the material world; its roots are anchored in humble mud (matter); the stem grows through the water seeking the sun (spiritual knowledge). The leaf represents freedom from attachment because water easily rolls off its surface. The beginnings are rooted humble mud but when it blossoms the sun of spiritual knowledge kisses it: that is transcendence.
Straight posture is conducive for easy rise of Kundalini Sakti or serpent to rise up along the Susumna Nadi in the spinal Canal. Susumna Nadi is not an anatomical entity, but a mystical channel in which Kundalini Devi rises. You may look at the midpoint between the eyebrows Ajna Chakra or the tip of the nose. If this causes eyestrain you may close your eyes and turn your mental eye to Anahata (heart), Ajna (forehead), or Sahasrara (crown) lotus.
Brahmamuhurta between 4 to 6 AM is the auspicious time for meditation. Another source says that Brahmamuhurta is the time 48 minutes before the sunrise. The presiding deity of this period is Brahma and hence the name. Agni Purana (Chapter 155) gives detailed account of the code of conduct for purification and meditation. Modifications and discretion in purification are recommended. Here are some of the codes. The code says that one should worship Vishnu, Siva and Soma (Moon). One should face the sun but not look at rising or setting sun. One should not utter displeasing words to anyone. One should not throw garbage or excreta in the river. One should not live in a place devoid of a physician, a king and a river. Speech should be pleasant and moderate. One should act on the dictates of natural impulses of the body.
Agni Purana (Chapter 156) have some interesting advice that is good for all times. Vessels or anything contaminated by urine and feces are made pure by heating: a good way of killing bacteria. Common custom is that many things are purified by sprinkling them with water.
The code says that cow is pure except in its mouth. Mouths of a horse and goat are impure, while the mouths of women, calves of cows, birds and dogs are pure. (Bacteriologically mouths are not really pure.) A menstruating woman becomes pure by bathing on the fourth day.
Meditation on Gayatri
Narada is a Great Muni who travels the Trilokas (Earth, Astral and Heaven), has put in the most frequent flier miles among the Munis and is aptly called Triloka Chanchari (Three-world traveler). Being a traveler extraordinaire, he appears here, there and everywhere at the same time; he does not need any visa to go anywhere; he actually travels by thought. He was born of a maidservant who served great devotees of the Lord. He eats the remnants and thus, he says, all his sins were destroyed, his heart is purified and he becomes a transcendentalist. By listening to Lord Krishna's pastimes, he becomes one of His close associates. His mother dies by snake bite and this precipitates his travel to many places in search for the Mother and Father of all. In his wanderings, his devotion to the Lord increases and he gets a vision of God who says that he presented Himself to him in person to whet his appetite for more of Him and He would appear no more until he is ready again. Bhagavan Krishna gives him a gift of the Vina, stringed instrument which is infused with divine sound.
One day Narada Muni is in the company of Vishnu, Lakshmi, Brahma and other gods. He thanks Mahavishnu for instructing him on rituals, austerity, fasting and penance. He asks Him to instruct and show him the path of obtaining the Divine Grace of all deities all at once without too much effort. Mahavishnu replies that he could obtain such Grace by worshipping Gayatri Devi. He continues, "there is no Mantra more auspicious and efficacious like Gayatri, which should be recited at least three times at a time, in the before sunrise, noon and evening before sunset to obtain the Grace and Anugraha (divine favor) from Sun God. This will guarantee Divine Grace form all 330 million deities in the universe.
Bhagavan Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita,
10.35: Of the hymns in Sama Veda, (I am) Brhatsama; of meters, I am Gayatri; of months (I am) Margasirasa (Nov-Dec); of all seasons, I am flower-bearer (spring).
I meditate of the five face of Goddess Gayatri; they have the colors of pearl, coral, gold, blue, black and white; She has three eyes with diadem adorned with the crescent moon consisting of syllables standing for the TRUTH. She sports Mudras, bestowing protection, refuge and boons; she holds in her hands a goad, whip, skull, noose, conch, discus and two lotuses.
She is of three qualities: Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. Sattva Guna became Vishnu; Rajas, Brahma; and Tamas, Siva. All three Gods worship the Mother Goddess, Gayatri.
She put her three sons, Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva in the cradle of Akasa (ether) which hangs by the chains tied to the four Vedas. Brahma is Rajasic, Vishnu is Sattvic and Siva is Tamasic. She sings cradlesong to put them to sleep. Since they are sleeping, the Mother disappears. (She would be in big trouble with the law in US for leaving the children home alone. Being the Mother Goddess, She keeps a tab on them constantly by Her divine vision and sustains them by Her grace. This separation has an explanation.) The threesome wake up and cry for the Mother, wander and grow up in the ethereal domain. They sit in meditation and the heat from their Tapas is scorching the universe. The Mother shows up to her children in her universal form. She appears donned in a red sari; She has a full moon-like face (in her one-headed form), a third eye and red Bindu on her forehead; in her eight arms she holds her weapons and lotus. She wears ankle bells, toe-rings, bangles, and other ornaments.
She holds her children in her arms and kisses them. She talks to them. "I left you to your own devices to inculcate and develop your natural tendencies, creation preservation and destruction. I was always with you, though you don't see my transcendental form. Now that you realized me and obtained my grace; in like manner I want all souls to realize me in the form of Divine Mother Goddess, Gayatri. I reward them my grace and boons. I am happy with your devotion and appoint you to the portfolios of creation, preservation, and dissolution. Let Rajasic Brahma do the creation; Sattvic Visnu, preservation; and Tamasic Siva, the dissolution. I am ready to answer to your prayers, when you need me."
This myth is to explain that Gayatri Devi is VedMata (Mother of Vedas) and controls the three functions of the Trinity.
Meditation on Gayatri by pranayama
Puraka, Kumbhaka and Rechaka: Inspiration, Retention and Exhalation of breath. During inspiration, meditate on Sarasvati with Brahma in the navel center. During Kumbhaka phase, meditate on Lakshmi with Vishnu in the Anahata (heart) center. During Rechaka phase, meditate on Parvati with Siva in the Ajna (Bhru madhya or forehead between the eyebrows).
Gayatri Dyana is meditation on Gayatri Mantra. It purifies, offers health and protection to the body, destroys all karmas, and opens the third eye of wisdom, discrimination and transcendence.
In the preceding paragraphs, details about times, asanas, and places of meditation are given.
Kali Yuga and Gayatri Mantra
Gayatri Mantra is the essence of three Vedas and Vishnu Sahasranamam. Daily recitation of Gayati Mantra brings inordinate benefits to the practitioner, when performance of Homam with recitation of Vedas in Kali Yuga is not possible. In the morning, Gayatri Devi appears in red dress reciting Rg Veda, as Savitri with white dress at noon reciting Yajur Veda, and as Sarasvati with black dress in the evening reciting Sama Veda. There is a subtle Dharma expressed in Gayatri's recitation of all Vedas in one day. Recitation of Gayatri Mantra is recitation of the three Vedas. Gayatri Devi made it easy for us by letting us recite Gayatri Mantra (the essence of the three Vedas) instead of the three Vedas; her compassion is inimitable.
Gayatri Mantra According to Maitri Upanishad. Translation from Sanskrit to English by Dr. Radhakrishnan.
Chapter VI.7 Worship of the sun by means of the SAvitrI prayer.
SAvitri, yonder sun is to be sought thus, by one desirous of self, so say the expounders of Brahma-knowledge. may we meditate on the splendor of the God. Savitri, verily, is god. May he inspire (illuminate) our thoughts. Thoughts, verily, are meditations.May he inspire these for us.... Sun is called Splendor or he who is the pupil in the eye. he is so called because his course is with the rays of the light or he is Rudra because he causes to dry up, so say the expounders of Brahma-knowledge. now Bha means that he illumines these worlds, Ra means that he gladdens these beings, Ga means creatures here go into him and come out of him. Therefore, because of being Bha, Ra, Ga he is Bharga. Surya is so named because of continued squeezing out, Savitri is so named because of its bringing forth.
Pruravas and Urvasi were a divinely happy couple on earth. Urvasi came from heaven and Pruravas was a human. They remained husband and wife for a long time under a stipulation that he would not be seen naked to Urvasi except in bed. The Gandharvas in Indra's heaven missed Urvasi so much so a Gandharva stole the pet rams in the dead of night hoping Pruravas will come after him. There was bedlam in the Royal chamber as the rams were crying and bleating. Pruravas in his chamber picked up the sword to give a chase. At that moment in time the Gandharva shone a lightning, which exposed his naked body to Urvasi. When he returned from the chase with the rams, Urvasi was gone. After several pleadings with the Gandharvas, they gave Pruravas a pot of fire and advised him to divide it into three fires: those of Earth, Atmosphere and Heaven.
Here is what Woodroffe says about Gayatri Mantra in his book
The Garland of Letters, pages 284-310
THE Gāyatrī is the most sacred of al Vaidika mantras. In it the Veda lies embodied as in its seed. It runs:
Om Bhūr bhuvah svah:
ॐ भूर्भुवः स्वः ।
tat savitur vareṇyam
तत् सवितुर्वरेण्यं ।।
bhargo devasya dhīmahi:
भर्गो देवस्य धीमहि ।
dhiyo yo nah pracodayāt. Om
धियो यो नः प्रचोदयात् ।। ॐ
“Oṃ . The earthly, atmospheric and celestial spheres. Let us contemplate the wondrous Solar Spirit of the Divine Creator (Sāvitri). May He direct our minds (that is, towards the attainment of Dharma, Artha, Kāma, and Mokṣa). Oṃ .” --Woodroffe.
Om, earth, atmosphere, and heaven, we meditate on the adorable glory of the radiant sun; may he inspire our intelligence—translation by Dr. Radhakrishnan.
The Gāyatrī-Vyākarṇa of Yogī Yājñavalkhya thus explains the following words: Tat, means that. (Tat is apparently here treated as in the objective case, agreeing with varenyam, etc., but others holding that the vyāhṛti —Bhūr bhuvah svah—forms part of, and should be linked with, the rest of the Gāyatrī treat that as part of a genitive compound connected with the previous vyāhṛti, in which case it is teshām). The word yat, “which,” is to be understood. (It may, however, be said that yay is there in Yo nah). Savituh is the possessive case of Sāvitri, derived from the root sū, “to bring forth.” Sāvitri is, therefore, the Bringer-forth of all that exists. The Sun (Sūrya) is the cause of all that exists, and of the state in which it exists. Bringing forth and creating all things, it is called Sāvitri. The Bhaviṣya-Purāṇa says: “Sūrya is the visible Devatā. He is the eye of the world and the Maker of the day. There is no other Devatā eternal like unto Him. This universe has emanated from, and will be again absorbed into Him. Time is of and in Him. The planets, stars, the Vasus, Rudras, Vāyu, Agni, and the rest are but parts of Him.” By Bhargah is meant the Āditya-devatā, dwelling in the region of the Sun (Sūrya-maṇdala) in all His might and glory. He is to the Sun what our spirit (Ātmā) is to our body. Though He is in the region of the Sun, in the outer or material sphere, He also dwells in our inner selves. He is the light of the light in the solar circle, and is the light of the lives of all beings. As He is in the outer ether, so also is He in the ethereal region of the heart. In the outer ether He is the Sun (Sūrya), and in the inner ether He is the wonderful Light which is the Smokeless Fire. In short, that Being whom the Sādhaka realizes in the region of his heart is the Āditya in the heavenly firmament. The two are one. The word is derived in two ways: (1) from the root Bhrij, “to ripen, mature, destroy, reveal, shine.” In this derivation Sūrya is He who matures and transforms all things. He Himself shines and reveals all things by His Light. And it is He who at the final Dissolution (Pralaya) will in His form of destruotive Fire (Kālāgni) destroy all things. (2) From bha = dividing all things into different classes; ra = colour, for He produces the colour of all created objects; ga = constantly going and returning. The Sun divides all things, produces the different colours of all things and is constantly going and returning. As the Brāhmaṇa-sarvasva says: “The Bharga is the Ātmā of all that exists, whether moving or motionless, in the three Lokas (Bhūr Bhuvah Svah). There is nothing which exists apart from it.”
Devasya is the genitive of Deva, agreeing with Savituh. Deva is the radiant and playful (Līlāmaya) one. Sūrya is in constant play with creation (Sṛṣṭi), existence (Sthiti), and destruction (Pralaya), and by His radiance pleases all. (Līlā, as applied to the Brahman, is the equivalent of Māyā). Vareṇyam ̣ = varaṇīyam or adorable. He should be mediated upon and adored that we may be relieved of the misery of birth and death. Those who fear rebirth, who desire freedom from death and seek Liberation, and who strive to escape the three kinds of pain (tāpa-traya), which are Ādhyātmika, Ādhidaivika, and Ādhibhautika meditate upon and adore the Bharga, who, dwelling in the region of the Sun, has in Himself the three regions called Bhūr-loka, Bhuvar-loka and Svar-loka. Dhīmahi = dhyāyema (from the root dhyai), we meditate upon, or let us meditate upon.
Pracodayāt = may He direct. The Gāyatrī does not so expressly state, but it is understood that such direction is along the Catur-varga, or four-fold path, which is Dharma, Artha, Kāma, and Mokṣa (piety, wealth, desire and its fulfilment, and Liberation). The Bhargah is ever directing our inner faculties (Buddhi-vṛtti) along these paths.
The above is the Vaidikī-Gāyatrī, which, according to the Vaidika system, none but the twice-born may utter. To the Śūdra, whether man or woman, and to women of all other castes it is forbidden. The Tantra-Śāstra, which has a Gāyatrī-Mantra of its own, shows no such exclusiveness; Chapter III, verses 109-111, of the Mahānirvāṇa- Tantra gives the Brahma-gāyatrī for worshippers of the Brahman: “Parameṣvarāya vidmahe-para-tattvāya dhīmahi: tan no Brahma pracodayāti” (May we know the Supreme Lord. Let us contemplate the Supreme Reality. And may that Brahman direct us.)
THE GĀYATRĪ-MANTRA AS AN EXERCISE OF REASONING.
THE Society1 is called “Rationalistic.” If its formation was meant to be merely a homage to one form of modern western thought, the title may be fairly correct. I think however that you had no intention of adding to the volume of imitativeness in this country, but by your action you wished to affirm the necessity of such reasonable thinking and practice as is characteristic of the Arya-Dharma, rightly understood and cleansed of all bad and useless accretion. There is always a difficulty, when English verbal labels are used to describe Indian philosophical and religious theories and practices. In fact such labels are a fertile source of confusion. I hear of a good suggestion to call it Satyajñāna-Sabha or a similar name.
Rationalism, in the sense of its technical opposition to Sensationalism, has no meaning in this country for those who believe a child is born with his Samskāras.
“Rationalism” in its more general sense involves, it has been said, the following beliefs: (1) Reason is the chief source and final criterion of knowledge. (2) Each individual must investigate and gain knowledge for himself, and must not merely submit himself to external authority.
In other words he must to his own thinking.
1 This Chapter reproduces a lecture given to the Rationalistic Society, Calcutta.
(3) As a result of this it is said that a rationalist must reject any alleged knowledge, the truth of which cannot be rationally demonstrated.
Upon such a statement a Vedāntist (I speak throughout of the Advaita-Vedānta) would ask, what is the “knowledge” here mentioned? If worldly (Laukika) knowledge is meant, then the Rationalist and Vedāntist are at one. Worldly knowledge is apprehended through the senses (lndriya). In its own sphere, reason is the chief source of knowledge and final criterion. So much is this so, that Śaṃ karācārya says that if even Veda were to contradict what is the subject of worldly proof (Laukika-Pramāṇa) it would not be Veda. In this sphere it is not a Pramāṇa, which overrides the testimony of the senses and inferences therefrom. The Yoga-Vāsiṣṭha (Bk. 2—Ch. 18, vv. 2-3) says:
Api pauruṣam ̣ ādeyaṃ śāṣtraṃ ced yuktibodhakam
Anyat tvārṣaṃ api tyājyaṃ bhāvyaṃ nyāyyaikasevinā.
Yuktiyuktam ̣upādeyam vacanam bālakād api.
Anya tṛṇam iva tyājya m; apyuktaṃ Padmajanmanā.
That is, “Even a Śāstra of purely human authorship should be accepted if conformable to reason. Anything else (which is unreasonable), even though it be the word of a Ṛṣi, should be rejected by one who follows reason. The word of a boy if reasonable should be accepted. Anything unreasonable should be rejected as of no more count than a blade of grass, even if it be uttered by the Lotus-born (Brahmā) Himself.” On this subject read the whole of the 14th Chapter of Book II of the Mumukṣu- Khaṇda of this work which is a glorification of Vicāra or reasoning.
But there is more than what is seen with the eyes. The mind admittedly exists, but it is not seen by the senses (Atīndriya). Again as to objects, scientific instruments enable the sense to perceive more than is presented to them in their natural state. These instruments thus effect a material extension of natural faculty. Then there are Psychic Powers (Siddhi), the subject of much study today in the West, but matters of long familiar practice in this country. Here the mind may operate independently of the gross bodily organs of sense, as also occurs in some cases of Hypnosis. These psychic powers are again extensions of natural faculty. They are not supernatural, except in the sense that they are supernormal. They may, in any one individual, be natural or produced, but we do not reason ourselves into them. We can reason only upon whether they exist, and what they are and indicate. That is, we reason about them. In themselves they are peculiar mental faculties, by which the mind sees things or imposes itself upon and controls, or affects, others, such as Clairvoyance, Clairaudience, Hypnosis, Thought-reading, Telepathy and so forth. There is nothing unreasonable in all this. On the contrary an affirmation of their existence is reasonable and in accordance with the Vedantic theory of Being upon which this paper proceeds. The only question about them is one of fact or proof. Do they exist or not? Nothing is more unscientific than to pronounce a priori against them and without investigation into the facts. Notwithstanding scientific bigotry (for there is a bigotry of science as of religion) psychical research is coming to be recognised as a useful form of enquiry.
Lastly there is what is called spiritual or religious experience, which is of varying degrees and kinds, and is a knowledge of the nature (through an actual participation in Its Being) of the excelling and infinite Principle which lies behind and manifests all Phenomena. Professor James’s celebrated work “Varieties of Religious Experience” is one of the first essays in a field, which is only now commencing to be cultivated extensively. The possibility or fact of such experience cannot be said to be unreasonable. Such experience has been affirmed by all the great Religions, and by some of the great Philosophies. If it is unreasonable, then the bulk of Humanity have been lacking in reason in all the past and in the present times. The question again here is one of fact and proof. Have such experiences taken place in fact? Are they real experiences or mere hallucinations? In the latter case why should they occur? The only direct and certain proof is the having of such an experience oneself. Probable proof may be had in various ways, such as the persistence and universality of such experiences, the nature of the truths said to be revealed by them, and, in particular, the extraordinary effect which they have produced on the individuals who have had such experience, and (in the case of the greater experiences) the effect that they have produced on the world at large. To my mind it is a very shallow view which regards the effect produced on millions of past and present Humanity, by the Ṛṣis and Śākya-Muni of India, by Laotze, Jesus and Mahommed, as the outcome of the hallucination of the Mahātmās named and others. Which of these experiences, it may be asked, is true, or which one is truer than the others? This is too vast a question to be answered here. Let me however say this, that those who read these experiences with knowledge will find elements common to all together with some elements which seem to vary. As to these last let it be noted that just as in our ordinary life one man sees and knows more than another, so it is with spiritual experience, of which there are many grades. If two men are approaching a mountain, is the experience which one man has of it 50 miles distant untrue, because it differs from the experience of the other man who sees it at its foot? Do we not say that both are true, considering the position of each experiencer?
In India spiritual experience is called Veda, from the root “Vid” to know. It is experience in the limit, of which all others are gradual and partial reproductions. This may be primary, that is, an individual may himself have the experience, or he may accept the authority of those who have had such experience, for reasons I have slightly indicated but cannot develop here.
The Vedānta says that Reason is supreme in worldly (Laukika) matters open to our senses. By reasoning we may establish Laukika truth, but as regards what is not seen, such as the being of one Supreme Cause of which the Universe is an effect, unaided reason can only establish probabilities and not certainty. Thus one may, with reasonableness, argue for or against Monism, Dualism, Pluralism and so forth. In this way mere reasoning may lead to contrary conclusions. And in fact what is more contradictory than the conclusions of Western philosophy with Realism (old style and new as propounded by Mr. Bertrand Russell), Idealism (objective and subjective), Monism, Pluralism, Pan-psychism, Humanism, Pragmatism and the many other systems which jostle for men’s custom in this Philosophical Fair? It is a matter of doubt whether modern metaphysic is any real advance on that of the greater among the ancients. In my opinion none is better constructed than the Six Darśanas. The advance has been made in Science. But even here there is dispute, both as to the facts observed, and the theories based on them. For me, their greatest importance just lies in the fact, that the latest scientific inferences corroborate the intuitively derived teaching of the ancient sages. Thus present scientific conceptions of the constitution of matter, and notably the breakdown of the Atomic Theory, support the notions of Māyā, a single material basis of the Universe, and the existence of Ether which, as Ākāśa, was accepted in India when Europe had not passed beyond the so-called “four elements.” Both science and Indian beliefs posit an evolution of beings from the inorganic to the organic, and, in the latter division, from plant to animal and animal to man. In India it has always been held that there are no partitions or gulfs between the various forms of existence, and that, for instance, the difference between man and animal is not a difference of kind but of degree. Again from the new Psychology and Psychical Research, Vedānta gains support, as from theories touching the nature of mind as a material force (as Herbert Spencer teaches) and as a power (the predominant idea in “New Thought” literature), the extension of the field of Consciousness, dual personalities and various forms of psychical phenomena.
Nevertheless, so far as ultimates are concerned, neither Metaphysics nor Science can establish more than a high degree of probability; they may lead to the door of the shrine, but they do not directly and unaided place the enquirer within. The Brahman or All-Pervader cannot be established by reason, because it is never an object of knowledge. The Śāstra says, one can only know Brahman by being Brahman and that is by spiritual experience. Its being and nature are taught by revelation. Revelation is not the speaking of any voice, divine or otherwise, from without. It is self-knowledge in its deepest sense and nothing more. The Vedāntist affirms that we can know ourselves, not only in our gross or physical aspect as being fair or dark, short or tall and so on, or in our subtle or mental aspect as perceiving and reasoning beings, but in our innermost essence as that of which both body and mind are manifestations. It may be the facts or it may not be the fact, but there is nothing unreasonable in the proposition as such. It is this Self-knowledge, attained by oneself in varying degrees, or accepted as the experience of others (Śruti), whose testimony we may, for reasons satisfying to ourselves, accept, which renders certain that which to reason is only probable. Once Śruti is accepted, Reason can follow its teaching without violence to its own principles. What was before reasonable and probable is now both reasonable and certain. This must be so, unless we assume what is impossible, namely a divorce between rational and spiritual truth. Truth however is one and what is unreasonable must be rejected, whoever says it, “even if He be the Lotus-born.”
It is not India who has denied the rights of Reason. It is Europe who in the past has done so. But Europe has now, after fierce contest against Church tyranny and oppression (aided by the State) with its imprisonment, torture and burning at the stake, largely achieved in the present the right of free thinking. Had India been so opposed She might have been to-day more intellectually active. In the same way the political activity of Europe has been stimulated by the oppressive governance of its peoples. We westerners have had to fight for all the things of worth we have won.
Nowhere however has intellectual liberty been so authoritatively, and for such a length of time, recognised as in India. The word “Man” is derived from the root Man, which in Sanskrit means “to think.” Man is Manu. Therfore man is “The Thinker.” He is thus distinguished from the rest of the world by his thinking. What greater definition than this of our Aryan forefathers can be found? In no country in the whole world has there been more thinking than in India, which has been indeed a very hot-bed of speculation and divergent beliefs and practices: such as the Materialism of Chārvāka and the Lokāyatas, true atheists, men of the type of Ajitakeśakam ̣ balī, the opponent of Śākya-Munī, who denied that any Brāhmaṇa, or anyone else, had discovered any truth concerning any other life than this, who said that man was made of the four elements and dissolved into the elements at death and had gone for ever; such again as the Sānkhyas, dualists and realists, affirming the existence of Spirit, but holding a God as Governor of the universe unproved (Nirīśvara-Darśana); the Nyāyavaiṣeśikas, pluralists, realists affirming the existence of the Supreme Lord; Buddhist idealism (Vijnānavāda) and so called “Nihilists” (Śūnyavādins); Vedāntic Monism, qualified Monism, and Dualism in various theistic forms, Mimam ̣ sakas, Jainas and every shade of thought imaginable.
In Vedāntic Sādhana, Reasoning or Manana occupies, with Śravaṇa and Nididhyāsana, a principal place. All the Darśanas, particularly perhaps the Nyāya, are written to serve Manana or reasoning, and the Brahmasūtras, which the Vedāntic systems expound, are known as Vaiyāsikanyāyamālā.
As regards science, India has had its own great achievements which you will find recorded in part in Professors Brojendranath Seal’s and Binay-kumar Sirkar’s works on the subject. Up to the modern period India was more than the equal in this field of any other country. But undoubtedly, since that period, the palm for scientific thinking and experiment must be given to the West. Those who however imagine, that reasoning and freedom of thought are a distinctive appanage of the West, are very ignorant of the history of their country. If one had to make the comparison, and one did make it over a period, extending from say (to go no further) 2000 B.C., the statement must be reversed in favour of India. No country has honoured Reason more, or given it greater freedom than India. The cultural restrictions in this country have been of a different kind, consisting in the social ordering of life, and in later times exclusion from knowledge by reason of artificial distinctions of caste. But those, to whom the book of knowledge was open, have always been able to think freely enough. When Europe was under ecclesiastical domination, the attempt was made to make everyone think the same way in the manner laid down by Church authority. It is against this that European Rationalism protested.
I at first found a difficulty in choosing a subject to address to you out of the many which presented themselves, and I had practically written a paper, with which I was not satisfied, because I could not put before you (as indeed I cannot even now) what I wished to say within the limits available to me, when, by something more than chance, I found amongst my old papers a note sent me some years ago on the Gāyatrī-Mantra, the holiest expression of the thought of India. I therefore restate its argument more summarily in words, and with some further additions of my own.
The Mantra opens and ends with the Praṇava or Om. This refers in the first place to the threefold aspect of the World-Cause in manifestation. That there is a cause (Mahā-śakti) which, as the Universal Self, contains the universe within Itself, is dealt with in the meditation which follows. Here both the Cause and Its manifestation are the object of thought. The Nādabindu indicates that causal state of the World-Power, prior to its threefold differentiation as represented by the letters A, U, M, which coalesce into Om. These letters stand for its working which is observable by all. For the first and second refer to present activities, as well as those in the past and future, of the Mahāśakti, as the Radical Vital Potential. M or Rudra as so observed is chemical action breaking down the combinations of matter. This is the disintegration of form. A (Brahmā) is the force which creates it anew by its ever rejuvenescent molecular activity, thus rescuing organised vitality from the processes which are ever at work to consume (as “M”) its forms. U (Viṣṇu) is the maintaining power which stabilizes matter, which is only a relatively stable condition of energy, from which, it appears, and into which it, at length, merges. Looking at the sum total of manifested energy, Viṣṇu as Maintainer, through space and time, is a theological statement of the doctrine of the general conservation of energy. The Mahāśakti, in Herself Perfect Consciousness (Cidrūpiṇī), is the threefold Powers of Will, Knowledge and Action, and manifests in the building up, maintenance and disintegration of forms. What follows, as all else, is contained in Om ̣, but some of its implications are developed in the rest of the Gāyatrī-Mantra. Om considered as a sound (Dhvani) is the approximate natural name of the first undifferentiated movement (Sāmānya-Spanda) of the stressing material cause (Prakṛti) of the universe. The primordial “Sound” or Stress is the primordial functioning of the BrahmaŚakti.
Then follow the three Vyāhṛtis—Bhūh, Bhuvah, Svah, which are Lakṣaṇa of, that is, stand for, all the fourteen Lokas, though now in the (Vyāvahārika) world we are only concerned with the first three; Bhūh for Bhūh and the seven nether Talas, Bhuvah for itself, and Svah for Svah and the remaining upper regions up to Satya. The Lokas represent states of consciousness. Bhūrloka or earth is the state of normal experience. The Lokas above it are states of supernormal consciousness, and the Talas below are conditions of sub-normal experience. Objectively considered matter becomes more and more dense as one descends from the highest to the lowest Loka and thence to the Talas; and as the veil of matter is more or less dense, so the state at consciousness varies. The first five Lokas, from and including Earth, are those of the five forms of sensible matter, the sixth is that of Mind; and the seventh is the causal state of both Mind and Matter. Earth and the nether states are the gross body, the Lokas from Bhuvah to Tapah are the subtle body, and Satya is the causal body of the great Puruṣa referred to in the Gāyatrī and worshipped in the Sun-circle (Āditya-mandala). The Vyāhṛtis indicate that the Great Self which is indicated in Om pervades all the regions of the universe. How then do we get the notion of that Self and then experience it?
In our ordinary condition of consciousness, the outer world is completely objective and stable and independent of it. It lies “over there” in the outer space entirely external to us, having apparently its existence in itself and of itself. This state of consciousness is indicated by the first Vyāhṛti “Bhūh.” This is our normal state. Our mind is here. It is one thing—Aham ̣ or I. The object, the Idam ̣ or “This,” the Vimarśa-Śakti, is there. It is another. But a little reflection reveals that these seemingly independent objects are for us bundles of certain qualities, which are so, only because they are sensed by the Senses which are constituted in a particular way. It is obvious that if our senses were not there, or if they were not seizing the object, there would be no sensation and no object. Again if the senses themselves were modified, the sense perceptions would also change. In that case the objects, which at first sight exist independently of our perceptions, would become something different from what they formerly were, as they would exhibit a different set of qualities. Thus the objective world is not really independent as we first thought, and the form it presents to us is due to the action of some objective force acting upon the subjectively sensuous character of the beings who perceive it. With such reflections the notion of objective stability wears off, and the world first assumes a mobile condition, in so far as it is seen that the objects, which at first seem to possess the qualities which characterise them, do so not only of themselves but also of ourselves. The condition of mind in which this notion is firmly held is the second of the seven divisions or stages of the Pārthiva (earthly) consciousness. All materially-minded thinkers, who look upon the objective world as independent of a subjective perceiver, are in the Bhūrloka.
The second condition of consciousness in which the subjectivity of the self first asserts itself, and the objective world loses its absolute and independent character and appears as dependent upon, influenced and modified by the subjective factor, is expressed in some forms of idealism. In such cases though the subjective element is recognised, it is not ideal in the sense that it has its root wholly in itself, but it is objectively actual in the sense that it has its existence at least mainly in the external. The Seer, seeing, and seen, are localised in the outer space. As we proceed upwards, whilst the seen (Jñeya) remains external to us, the seeing (Jñāna) is localised internally, until at length the seer (Jñātā), seeing (Jñānā), and seen (Jñeya) are all internalised, subjectified and unified. This Jñāna-svarūpa of the Supreme Consciousness is opposed to Jñānavṛtti or the limited and differentiated consciousness.
After the attainment of this second stage we pass to the third. We then ask, what lies behind the senses, wherein to a great extent the appearance of the external world depends? We then perceive that the senses do not apprehend objects unless attention, in the form of Manas is bestowed upon them. The whole world, open at any moment to the senses, is impinging on them at every moment, but only that is perceived to which we pay attention. The Bṛhadāranyaka Upaniṣad gives good psychology when it says, “I did not hear. My mind was elsewhere.” But attention must be directed and willed. We learn then that behind the Senses there is some Self which directs its attention to a particular object, and so perceives it by the medium of the senses. There is thus no sense-perception without the co-operation of the attention of the Self. Therefore the world (considered apart from what it may possibly be in itself) is dependent both upon the senses and attentive mind of the self which is behind them. The attainment and habit of this thought is the third ascending stage of the Pārthiva consciousness.
We have thus attained a knowledge of the self. We next reflect upon its nature. To the ordinary consciousness of the first two states, the self either did not appear important, or seemed to be limited to the body and restricted within its scope. But reflection has now shown that not only is it unconditioned by the senses, but actually conditions them, giving them effective operation through its power of attention. The self then appears uncontrolled by the physical body, self-luminous and overlapping the bounds of the physical senses. When this notion is reached the fourth stage of consciousness is attained.
The next question is—what is the relation of the self, the senses and the objects? Are they each independent in their origin the one of the other, or is one the cause of the other two? They cannot be independent of each other, for this would mean that either they had no relation to each other, or if there is any relation, it is due to some fourth thing external to the others, which is the basis of their relation and apart from which they cannot be in relation. It is obvious that they are in relation to each other, and, as such, the ground of their relation must be either in, or outside, themselves. It is sufficient to say here that no fourth principle capable of holding them together and bringing them into relation is perceived. But logically the same result can be established, for if a fourth principle bringing them into relation were assumed, which was dependent on some one or other of them, the causal element would be still to seek, whereas if it were independent and still in relation to the three, then the ground of this relation would have to be sought for in some fifth element, and so on with a regressio ad infinitum. We must then confine ourselves to the three and examine the nature of this relation.
The relation can be grounded only in that element out of the three which is independent of the others, for a dependent entity cannot have the ground of its relation to others within itself. The perceived objects are not independent. For they require the senses to be perceived as objects of that character according to which we perceive them. The senses are not independent, for sense-perception requires attention of the Self. Objects in order to be objects must be perceived by the senses. Without the senses they are not objects for us. The senses are not operative senses without the attention of the Self behind them. On the other hand the Self does not cease to be the Self, when it is not attentively perceiving objects through the senses, as we see in the case of dream. The Self in dream is cut off from the senses. Indeed it evolves both objects and senses. The Self in dream is cut off from the objective world, having nothing in it but ideas thereto. Yet it transforms for itself those ideas into outer objects and the senses which perceive them. What we see in dream is real while it lasts. Thus the Self is independent of the other two and has within itself the ground of the causal relation by which it evolves them. The firm and lasting consciousness which realises this is the fifth step in the ascending consciousness.
What then is the nature of the relation between the cause producing the objective world and the effect so, produced? Is it a cause material in its nature, producing an effect external to itself, or an ideal cause working ideally upon itself to produce an effect? The cause cannot produce an effect which is really external to itself. Were this so, the dream-world of which we are creators would be external to the self which produces it. In that case it would not vanish with that state of consciousness which lies at the root of it. The objective world can only be ideally connected with its cause. Gradually the notion that the objective world is produced by a cause external to it is rejected, and the notion is accepted that the cause has the effect lying ideally within it, which is projected and externalised in the course of cosmic evolution. For when mind and matter are evolved, each has equal reality and (in the sense of impermanence) unreality. In its highest sense Reality = Persistence = Deathlessness (Amṛtatva) = Ānanda which is living unimpeded in the fullest measure, which is Ātmā. And so Herbert Spencer on biological principles defines “pleasure” as the index of the unimpeded flow of vitality. What fully persists and is therefore fully “real” is the self. The firm establishment of this experience is the sixth consciousness. Just as the dream-world lies within the consciousness of the dreamer, who projects it into fancied objectivity, so the objective world of common (Vyavahārika) experience lies within, and is projected by, the Consciousness of the so-called World-dreamer, who sums up in Himself all experiences. Is the world or its cause necessarily thus by virtue of the nature of the cause itself, or on account of some external fact? There is no material other than itself outside the cause which it takes within, works upon, and puts forth. It might be thought that there was ideal connection with the objective world on the causal side, but that the root of the objective world upon which it operates was something lying elsewhere than in its inner being. But this is not so, as the effect, the objective world, must necessarily be within the cause, otherwise it is not possible that it should be ideally connected with it. If the connection with the cause were something other than the constitution of the cause itself, there must be an indication of what that something is and the nature of its connection with the cause. Moreover if that something lies outside the cause, we must suppose some medium connecting that something with the cause itself. And again the question would arise whether this connection was natural and necessary, or adventitious. If the latter, then what is it which brings about the connection? In this way we have a regressio ad infinitum unless we suppose the connection to be natural and necessary. It is reasonable then to hold that the objective world lies necessarily in its root the cause. Moreover having arrived at the consciousness that the effect is ideally connected with the cause, it is more reasonable to hold that this connection is due to the constitution of the cause itself. When the entire objective world is viewed as necessarily lying within the cause, the seventh, or what we may call the Satya stage of the Pārthiva consciousness, is attained.
Up to this we have only dealt with the subdivisions of the Pārthiva or earth consciousness, that is, experience as beings in the Pārthiva state elaborated by reflection to its highest point. By such reflection we reach the standpoint from which the whole universe is viewed as lying in a seed (Bīja) form, ideally and potentially within its cause which is nothing but the Self.
Thus one aspect of the grandeur of the Self as the potential cause of the entire universe is revealed. The Sādhaka has thus passed through higher and higher stages of the Pārthiva consciousness to the indwelling Spirit within it. His thus expanded consciousness brings forth the exclamation which is the Gāyatrī-Mantra, in which homage is made to the Supreme Power, which manifests in this and all other forms of experience and its objects in the Universe. Hence the word by which the Sādhaka denotes this indwelling Spirit is Savitā, or the Projector of the Universe from out of Its own thought, without external material or aid. It is however to be remembered that the strength of the force of the externality-notion which commenced at the stage of Ether (Ākāśa) reached its greatest power in the earth-principle (Pṛthivī-Tattva) of solid, ponderable, three dimensioned matter and in the Pārthiva consciousness. Therefore it is that Savitā the Producer, though really the Inner Self, is itself, externalised as something placed out in space and hence we find it designated by Tat or That. This “Thatness” will, as we proceed, meet in one unity the Supremeness of the last stage. But it is the characteristic of the Pārthiva consciousness that it always tends to locate both the Seer and the Seen in outer space. The devotee to whose mental gaze the indwelling Spirit reveals itself, bursts forth into the Mantra: “Let us meditate on the adorable darkness-dispelling Spirit of the self-luminous all-producing Savitā,” with the prayer that It may inspire and illumine our inward Reason. It is through this illumination of the Reason by the source of Reason, that the inner Reason which is our inner being sees and understands the entire universe and its principles. This Savitā produces the universe in accordance with the principles of Reason which are at base His own inner being (Vicāracamatkritih paramātmamayī), and this production of His is revealed to us and realised by us in participation with the Divine Reason of His being. As we are, in our deepest ground, the Spirit which, in its outer aspect, is our limited selves and what is not ourselves; as our reason is an efflorescence of Its own eternal all-knowingness, so our outer reasoning is in conformity with the truth in its own sphere, and is illumined to pass beyond reasoning upon the objective world to an understanding of the rational vesture of the Spirit, and then to the intuitive realisation of the Spirit Itself. This union of ours with the universal is shown by the fact that we, as so many individuals, if we were to remain confined within our individuality, could never perceive the universe as common to us all. This common perception of the universe could not be achieved by us as individuals, but only as being one with the universal. And therefore in so far as we are the common perceivers of the universe, we are not individual but universal. Our individuality consists in our perception of the universe in so far as it differs from that of others. Thus difference of perception, which individualises us, is not based upon any inherent differentiating condition in our essential being, but upon the externalising limitations, the result of particular Karma, which make it impossible for all to perceive everything at the same time to the same extent. This perception of the difference of the many, due to limitation, differentiates each individual from the other, but it does not, and cannot, differentiate him from the Indwelling Universal (here Pārthiva) which is the common ground of all. Thus the Sādhaka says that it is this Savita or Indwelling Universal, which inspires the Reason of us all, both as individual and as universal, and it is through the Self-luminous Consciousness of this Most Glorious Self (known not only in Samādhi, but in and through every act of reasoning, its mental embodiment) that we are enabled to learn and understand the Truth (Satyam; ). For it is Satya or the Persistent Self Itself. The relation between the individual and the universal being thus grasped, and it being realised that the individuality of the individual is only through the universal, we should then proceed to see what is the nature of this Universal which makes it project the universe as we see it around us.
Here we pass beyond the Gāyatrī Sādhanā into the subtle Ātmā-sadhana. The Vedāntist says that to such as truly see, whether with the eye of reason or intuition, the whole universe is perceived as originating from its source, as the Gangā from the Himālayas, and at length returning thereto. Its source is in the Power of the Perfect Consciousness which is Śiva, which means the Auspicious and Good, the Brahman or all Pervading. All which exists are Its varying forms, existing in happiness so long as they are in Harmony with Him who is Bliss (Ānanda) itself. Power and Harmony—let us repeat these words day by day. Think continuously the Thought of Power and be powerful. Individual Power is a small thing, but when it links itself to, or identifies itself with, the Supreme Power, it shows its mightiness according to the degree of such harmony and union. Power however does not merely mean material force. The latter is only Power translated to the material plane. Power is also mental, moral, spiritual. Love is Power—the greatest of Powers. Everything in fact which exists is Power, which is the Mother (Ambikā).
We may intellectually conceive this. But how to realise it? Here the Vedantic practice (Sādhana) is as profound as its theory. It says that man as body, mind and spirit is one whole. If one would understand and realise the Pure, one must be that, both in body and mind (Śuddhātmā). In the West it is commonly supposed that a man may arrive at, or at any rate is competent to seek for, the truth by reason alone. Mere reason however is insufficient. A man may be deemed a philosopher in the West, and yet lack in character and morals. This is not so in Vedānta which says that its doctrine cannot be perfectly understood, much less realised, unless the body and mind are made pure enough to approach the Purity which that doctrine teaches. The whole being must be brought in harmony, so far as may be, with it. Thus is it understood and at length realised. The pure mind and body naturally think the thoughts which link man’s mind with the Universal Mind and the Universal Self of which it is the subtle form. Sādhanā varies according to the stages of development and therefore competency (Adhikāra) of man. But the highest of Sādhanās is Karunā or compassion. I took up recently an English novel, curiously enough called “The Rationalist.” There I found the phrase “this new thing appearing on the horizon—the phenomenon of Compassion which is now beginning to express itself in action.” This “new thing” is as old here as the Vedas and the Buddha Gotama who ceaselessly taught it. Avoid giving pain. Allay it where it is. Yet the application of this principle is not so simple as is sometimes thought. The truly great of our race need no other power nor effort than to be themselves. By the mere fact of their own self-redemption, they redeem others. Others must at least strive to hold in view the ideal in the midst of the struggles into which their nature and circumstances may lead them. Mere apathy however is not Yoga. Yoga is unity with the Lord in the forms of His Power as one’s family, friends, people and the world at large. He is Jagadbandhu, that is, Friend of the World. We can each make effort to follow this Supreme Law and to extricate ourselves from the morass of merely selfish struggle. And as we successfully, according to our varying opportunity and capacity, do so, we will find that we make individual advance, and that the power to impose our will on others increases. If each will, according to his capacity, so order his life that he does not cause pain to, and relieves the suffering of this great Body of the Lord which is the Universe, of which each is an infinitesimal part, then they will commence to really understand. The greatest cloud upon understanding is selfishness. The mass of men are still mere candidates for Humanity and must raise themselves to it. The meaning of Evolution is the liberation of the Spirit or Inner Self from all which obscures its essential freedom. This liberation is taking place in the gradual ascent from inorganic to organic being and the advance of organism culminating, for the present, in man as we know him. The highest humanity is that in which it and Divinity meet. In man the I principle is still being developed in present humanity. The end is the perfection of the present “I,” and then by stages its identification with the Universal “I,” the Pūrnāham which is the Infinite Self. The Sādhaka thinks of this ascending or return movement repeatedly, for Japa on the Gāyatrī is necessary to correct the natural objective tendencies of thought. This is the true performance of Sandhyā, which literally means perfect Dhyāna or meditation, of which the Gāyatrī-Mantra is the soul.
Those who have not learnt the goal of evolution do not realise the necessity of Sandhyā. They have before their eyes only the present powers and capacities of man and think that his present possibilities on the lower plane should alone be realised. They think only of the fulfillment of desires, shutting their eyes to the purpose for which man exists in the world, namely, first harmony with the active (Viśvātma-Śakti) and then union with the Unchanging Brahman (Cidrūpiṇi-Śakti). They fail to realise that the Reality, which underlies all phenomena, must also be in the deepest nature of man, and unless that Reality is known the deepest aspirations of Humanity cannot be fulfilled. From the earliest beginnings all earnest minds have sought the solution of the riddle of the universe. All types of thinkers whether materialists, idealists, or spiritualists, have supposed that there is some Reality, call it Matter, Mind, Spirit, Brahman, God, Allah, what they will, which, whilst eluding their mental grasp, is all the same there, though it cannot be comprehended by the mind in its fullness. It cannot only be there, but it must be here within the inmost nature of all, as one with the deepest inmost self. If so, man must not only study the objective universe, which he should do to gain knowledge of the external Śakti-aspect of this reality, but he must plunge deep into his own nature, for he can only realise It within and not without the self. Man’s present existence is a mode of consciousness, ordinarily in the spiritual Bhūh Consciousness, or in the forms of a Tala Consciousness. The search is to find out the universal principle. Beings in the lower order of evolution have not the “I” principle evolved to the level of Vijñāna or Buddhi, and therefore the reason and understanding must be developed. The greater portion of the work of evolution must be done by the individual himself, under the guidance of the divine principle of Reason, and if we do not wish to be left behind in the general progressive movement, we must give up all lethargy and the contentment which the animal (whether as beast or man) has with his present powers and capacities and their external environment. Man must seek to understand the meaning of life and its end, and looking beyond by the Eye of Divine Wisdom (Jñāna-cakṣu) endeavour to first intellectually grasp, and then to realise, that which is the Beginning, the Maintainer and the End of all—the Vācya-śakti of the Gāyatrī-Mantra.
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अभयं सत्त्वसंशुद्धिर्ज्ञानयोगव्यवस्थितिः ।
दानं दमश्च यज्ञश्च स्वाध्यायस्तप आर्जवम् ॥१६- १॥
śrībhagavān uvāca: abhayaṁ sattvasaṁśuddhir jñānayogavyavasthitiḥ
dānaṁ damaś ca yajñaś ca svādhyāyas tapa ārjavam 16.1
śrībhagavān uvāca: abhayam1 sattva-saṁśuddhiḥ2 jñāna-yoga-vyavasthitiḥ3
dānam4 damaḥ5 ca6 yajñaḥ7 ca8 svādhyāyaḥ9 tapaḥ10 ārjavam10 16.1
śrībhagavān uvāca = Sri Bhagavan said: abhayam1 = fearlessness; sattva-saṁśuddhiḥ2 = purity of the mind; jñāna-yoga-vyavasthitiḥ3 = steadiness in Yoga of knowledge; dānam4 = charity; damaḥ5 = self-control [of organs]; ca6 = and; yajñaḥ7 = sacrifices; ca8 = and; svādhyāyaḥ9 = study of the scriptures; tapaḥ10 = austerity; ārjavam10 = rectitude... 16.1 continued.
16.1: Sri Bhagavan said: Fearlessness, purity of mind, steadiness in yoga of knowledge, charity, self-control, sacrifice, study of scriptures, austerity, rectitude, (continued)...
Translation from Tamil: V. Krishnaraj
காயத்ரீ மந்திர மகிமை : தெய்வத்தின் குரல் (இரண்டாம் பகுதி)
The Greatness of Gayatri Mantra: Deivathil Kural, 2nd Part
With three years of absent Yagna, he is a Dhurbrahmana or degraded Brahmana. Though degraded, he at least has Brahmana appended to him.
He is no more a Brahmana once his family gave up Gayatri Mantra for three generations. It is no more (the exclusive) Agrahāram, the street he lived in. It is the street of ordinary people. If the onerous default in not yet three years, they may be called Brahmanas. (After three-year default, that Brahmana is downgraded to Brahmana Bandhu or a nominal Brahmin.) There are remedies for the restoration of Brahmanahood. If Gayatri recitation was not in vogue for three generations, the Brahmanatva is lost forever. There is no way he can become a Brahmana again. Once lost, it is lost forever. He is a mere Brahmabandhu-a nominal Brahmin, meaning he has Brahmanas as his relatives. So is the case with Kṣatriyas or Vaisyas.
Therefore, it is mandatory to blow on the fiery sparks and make a flame. Small sparks have no value. But they have the potential to become a useful big flame.
The wearers of sacred thread should at least chant Gayatri 1000 times. The adherent should not eat unapproved food at unapproved eateries. One should take expiatory steps for the past Anāsāram (unapproved practices). One should purify the body (mind and soul) to retain the Mantra Sakti by not eating unapproved food.
It is high achievement to chant the Gayatri Mantra a thousand times. It is a middling practice to chant a hundred times. On the low side, at least ten chants should be uttered.
On should perform Gayatri Japam at least ten times in morning, noon, and evening and also in times of whatever may be the danger. These junctional times are the inductors of peace. Morning is when the birds, animals, people…awaken, a time of peace and tranquility. Evening is the time for peace at the end of the workday. At noon, the sun is at its highest and brightest, a time for rest and mental peace. On these three junctional times, one should meditate sequentially on Gayatri, Savitri and Sarasvati. Brahma Rūpiṇī, Siva Rūpiṇī and Vishnu Rūpiṇī are the forms for meditation in the morning, noon and evening.
Gayatri has all Veda Mantra Saktis in it and gives the power to all other Mantras. If Gayatri is not meditated upon, meditation on other Mantras has no power. In the name of hypnotism, many activities are performed. Gayatri Mantra is the hypnotism helpful and conducive to attainment of Mōkṣa. Gayatri-hypnotism helps man attain the goal of human endeavour. One should curtail worldly activities and blow on the fiery sparks to make the flame of Yagna. It should be one’s Vrata or vow. Without breaking the Sāstraic dictates, maintaining body purity will help keep the sparks from going out.
In Sandhyāvandhanam, water oblation and Gayatri are important. The rest are secondary. The poor must at least offer water and chant Gayatri at least ten times. Are these two only important? Why do we not do them and stop at that? Gradually, that will encourage greed. A pundit said in jest a truncated version meant for the poor and the ones in danger, if done by the rich and the comfortable, will always keep them mired in danger and want. Gayatri Mantra must be chanted in fullness and fervor with no deficiency, the important life matters will stand in good stead. Even during dangerous periods, all needs must be met with no lapse. During wars, the soldiers with no access to water used dust in the place of water at assigned times without fail.
At dusk, predawn, and noon, water oblation should be done. Siddhars are highly educated people, knowledgeable in herbal medicine, astronomy, literature… Idaikkattu Siddhar was one of them. He made a living tending sheep… He once said in Tamil, “காணாமல்1 கோணாமற்2 கண்டு3 கொடு!4 ஆடு5காண்6 போகுது7 பார்8 போகுது9 பார்!”10 என்று சொல்லி இருக்கிறார்.”
என்று சொல்லி இருக்கிறார்.”
Sun Before dawn
Before dawn, give water oblation. #1
without an angle2
Sun at noon. Give Water oblation #2
When you see the sun is in its arc3
Give water oblation! 4
Water oblation before sunset#3
Waterplay in the Ganges5
Ritual bathing in Ganges
Obtain Darsan of Sethu Bridge6
Upon arrival at Ramesvaram
See the sins leave you because of 3 water oblations, bathing in the Ganges, and seeing the Setu bridge.
See the sins leave you because of 3 water oblations, bathing in the Ganges, and seeing the Setu bridge.
Offer water oblation before Dawn. Offer second oblation at noon. Offer third oblation before sundown. Take the ritual bath in Ganges. Take the Ganges water to Ramesvaram. At Ramesvaram see the Sētu, the bridge that spans the shallow waters between India and Sri Lanka. Until 1480CE, the bridge was above sea level. Later it sank. This bridge was said to have been built by Rama’s army of monkeys to invade Sri Lanka so Rama’s wife could be rescued. Its name is Ram Setu (Rama’s Bridge). Kamban says, “Go to Kasi-Benares-bring the Ganga water (in a copper vessel), arrive at Ramesvaram and do the bathing of the idol with Ganga water. That is the tradition.
Here is the images of Ram Setu or the Rama's Bridge, also known as Adams Bridge.
Only when Gayatri Mantra was properly chanted, we can accrue benefits from other Veda Mantras. Offering of water and Gayatri must be done with no lapse. At least once in a lifetime, bathing in the Ganges and darśana of Sētu Bridge must be done.
When a person suffers from high fever, we should do Sandhyāvandhanam on his behalf and pour the water in his mouth. It appears we have daily fever.
Medicine is essential for fever. Likewise, the Gayatri medicine is essential for the cure of fever of bondage sustained by the soul. It should never be abandoned at any time. It is more important than the medicine. We should not give up on Gayatri even for a day.
Gayatri Japam is practicable for everyone. There is no need for other than water. There is no physical demand. It gives goodness. Until the end of life, we should perform Sandhyāvandhanam with no lapse, delay or deficiency.
Gayatri should be worshiped in the form of mother. Bhagavan grants blessings to us coming in various forms. Mother offers the most love. You may say anything to Mother with no reservation or fear. Bhagavan’s arrival in the form of Mother is the most pleasing. Veda states that Gayatri is such Mother.
Puruṣa (husband) has Gayatri Mantra. For the woman, what Gayatri is available? If the husband worships Gayatri, wellness come to the spouse. The upper three castes should worship Gayatri for which they are entitled. This guarantees the unentitled other Jātis to obtain benefits. The higher castes are the trustees for the unentitled women and Sudras. If the upper castes do not worship Gayatri as their duty, obtain benefits and pass them on to the women and Sudras, there is no expiation and they will be damned with sin.
Mantras are plenty. Before Japam, we consider the special and different benefits and then worship gods. Gayatri Mantra’s benefit is mental purity: removal of stains from the mind. The benefits from all other Mantras are eventually for the creation of mental purity, which is the direct and one and only benefit from Gayatri Mantra.
In these modern times, all can perform Sandhyāvandhanam in the morning and evening. People going to office can do without fail the morning and evening Sandhyāvandhanam. The noontime Sandhyāvandhanam appropriate for that period can be done at 8:30 AM with Japam and offering of water.
If it is not a total impossibility, thrice-daily Sandhyāvandhanam is a must. If you are down with sickness or fever, you can ask others to perform the Sandhya on your behalf.
Let us all supplicate to God to grant us blessings so the flame of Mantra power grows brighter without extinguishment.