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Messages - atmavichar100

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1201
General topics / Re: Quotes from Shankaracharya's
« on: June 09, 2014, 10:52:03 AM »

1202
General topics / Re: Quotes from Shankaracharya's
« on: June 08, 2014, 10:42:42 AM »
To start with, we must perform the rites prescribed by the Vedas. But in this there must be the realisation that they are but steps leading us to the higher state in which we will ultimately find bliss in our Self, a state in which there will be neither rites nor duties to perform.- Kanchi Paramacharya

1203
General topics / Re: Quotes from Shankaracharya's
« on: June 04, 2014, 08:50:30 AM »

1204
General topics / Re: Quotes from Shankaracharya's
« on: June 03, 2014, 05:56:57 PM »
Seek the Gurus guidance and then meditate. The Gurus instruction will be remembered everytime the mind deviates and will help in focusing the mind. - Sri Sri Bharati Tirtha Mahaswamigal

1205
General Discussion / Re: Rough Notebook-Open Forum
« on: June 03, 2014, 10:53:02 AM »
Thayumanavar
(source:MP Jul/AUG 1995)


Although Thayumanavar lived less than 300 years ago and remains the most popular Tamil poet-saint, there is no authentic record of his date of birth or death. What is known to have transpired between these two events can be summed up briefly:

At an early age he began working in the service of a king. When the king died he left this work because of the amorous advances of the king's widow. He then travelled in search of a Guru. At Tiruchilapalli he met Mouna Guru Arulananda Sivachari. He asked to be taken as a disciple, but the saint answered 'chumma iru', meaning 'be still' or 'be quiet' or 'just be' (a phrase which Ramana Maharshi also used on a number of occasions). However, the saint said that when the time was ripe he would initiate him.
Thayumanavar then returned home and married. Soon after his wife delivered their first child, a boy, she died. That again prompted Thayumanavar to leave home in answer to his spiritual calling. He once more approached Arulananda Sivachari and, true to his word, the guru fulfilled his promise and initiated Thayumanavar into sannyas.

Thayumanavar followed the discipline of silence (mouna), which he describes as: "that state which spontaneously manifests after the annihilation of the ego." He says: "It is a state beyond light and darkness, but it is called light, since language is inadequate to express it. The ego disappears and 'I' spontaneously manifests in full glory." The Maharshi particularly singled out this verse of his for admiration.

Thayumanavar was equally great as a saint and a poet. Often he would retire to the forest or public gardens and remained for days absorbed in the bliss of the Self. Legend has it that he was sitting thus, immobile insamadhi in a public garden in Ramnad when the gardeners, not noticing him, piled a heap of dry leaves and twigs about him and set fire to it, and thus his body was consumed and he merged in the Supreme.
His mystical and devotional lyrics continue to inspire devotees and aspirants. The profundity of their meaning is matched by their beauty of form, so that they appeal to simple and learned alike. Although no English translation can do justice to the Tamil original, a careful reading of the following will at least reveal the great depths of Thayumanavar's experience. Ramana Maharshi was often heard quoting from his exquisite verses. The following are ten verses especially selected by the Maharshi:

1 & 2. The individual ego known as "I" having manifested and troubled everyone, the universal Maya, the diversifying agency, spontaneously follows in its wake. Who can possibly describe the vast ocean of misery consequent upon it? It appears as the flesh, the body, the senses, interior and exterior, as the all pervading ether, air, fire, water and earth, as mountain, forest, huge visions like hills physical and subtle, as forgetfulness and memory, and so on, rising up wave after wave and beating against man, bringing pleasure and pain, which are the result of his past actions, and also their remedies known as creeds, religions, God-Seeker, and the testimonies and sanctions found in various sciences, and explained by logic. All these are more numerous than even the fine grains of sand on the seashore.

3. Unaccountable troubles crop up spontaneously, sheaf upon sheaf. How to root them out wholesale, even as burning up a hill of camphor without residue in a vast blaze of fire? In order to achieve this miracle, and to enlighten me, Grace took shape. In every respect, like my self, eating and sleeping, suffering and enjoying, bearing a name and born somewhere, it appeared as the Silent Guru, like a deer used to decoy another of its species.

4. And claimed my body, possessions and life itself and consistently with the process of elimination, signified "you are not the five senses nor the five elements, nor the limbs, nor the mind, nor their attributes, nor all these collectively, nor the body nor knowledge nor ignorance. You are pure consciousness, unassociated like a crystal, but reflecting the background to lookers-on; whereas we (guru) are only the inherent nature revealing the truth on finding you ripe for it."

5. "If eager to reach Consciousness-Bliss-Eternity innermost in all, which is also the inner abode of refreshing Grace, listen to the course I indicate. May you reach the Pure Heart and abide there forever! May dense ignorance vanish for you! May you attain to Bliss-Consciousness! May bondage cease for you!" Communicating thus,

6. "And dispensing the true knowledge of the Natural and Unique Silence which destroys all bondage and where there is no meditation nor the ego, no space, no time, no direction, no association, no elimination, no differentiation, no expression, no phenomena of night and day, no end, no beginning, no middle, no interior or exterior, nor an aggregate of all these."

7. (The Guru indicated further) that, though all these are eliminated, "It" is not void, but is Natural, Eternal Be-ing inexpressible by words, not manifesting as ego, but is the Reality engulfing all, having swallowed all ignorance like day covering night, and absorbing unhindered all knowledge, metamorphosing the person into Itself, It shines in Silence, Self-effulgent;

8. With its emergence, It prevents any other from appearing; and all else is put out suddenly like burning camphor blown away without residual flicker or glow; and in its place It shines beyond the senses, and apart from the knower, known and knowledge; and yet It is there, though who can speak of it and to whom? For if It arises, the individual is metamorphosed; It will assert Itself (Literally: It Speaks Itself),

9. (And further on), if it is said to be "It," the question arises "which," though such doubt about the non-dual One is illogical; so transcending it also, King Janaka or Suka and others remained like the bee intoxicated with honey in that state. (The same Guru's) blessing helped me to reach it. Grace is needed in order to reach theNirvikalpa Samadhi and attain absolute Bliss. I will not rest nor attend to my wants until I attain it.

10. On the "I" idea of the individual ego vanishing, there springs up within me a current of "I-I" endless indeed. This confers bliss engulfing all my knowledge, unique and transcendental, ending in Silence! How then can Silence be expressed?

1206
General Discussion / Re: Rough Notebook-Open Forum
« on: June 03, 2014, 09:05:59 AM »
I would like to add one more thing .It is not just the Vedic Dharma to be followed by Indians /Hindus , every Individual in whichever part of the world he /she is must try to understand and practice to the best of his/her ability the native religion , culture and practices .No doubt many of these practices have become outdated and many have also become corrupted by the priestly class but yet there still does exist some good practices that are worthy of being followed and it is better each individual tries to understand them ( Understand the pure form ) and practice in his / her life .

1207
General Discussion / Re: Rough Notebook-Open Forum
« on: June 03, 2014, 07:46:58 AM »
Quote
Atleast the orthodox ones are following not their ways but what is recommended by the sages.They are a notch better.

Dear Sri Ravi

Well put . In this context I remember once having an 1-1 discussion with Swami Paramarthananda many years back about following one's heart and following the Vedic Injunctions . Swamiji made it very clear that in certain things it is wiser to follow what the ancients have prescribed and not follow one's heart as one's heart is  highly colored by one's likes and dislikes and we will tend to do what we like and avoid what we dislike . As long as one's likes and dislikes sync with what the Ancients have said there is no problem but it is highly unlikely without a proper training right from Childhood on these matters and that is why he told at a young age boys are initiated with the Upanayana and given a set of instructions that they need to follow ( Taittriya Upnasihad has all these instructions ) .
He told many things that ancient have prescribed cant be understood at a young age and we can see the benefits slowly unfolding over the years and it is better not to question at the beginning and just follow it only that you take the instructions from a proper Guru . He also told that in case you do not have a proper Guru to guide in the Vedic Samskaras better follow the instructions followed by one of the various spiritual Organizations like Chinmaya Mission , Ramakrishna Mission , Sivananda Organziation etc  etc which every Individual is usually exposed to in the early part of one's life and use it as a base to build it up further . For me the association with the Sivananda Organization taught me the very basics like saying prayer before meals , doing daily 2 times prayer & Japa Morning and evening  , attending Sunday Satsang , chanting of Vishnu Sahasranama on Sat and Lalitha Sahasranama on Fridays , Guru Puja on Thu , Visiting temples and holy places ,reading scriptures, fasting on Ekadasi, the right food to be followed   and showing respect to saints etc etc .The 20 Points of Swami Sivananda were the guiding force for me and I am still assimilating that in to my day to day life . It was with this background I came across the finer points of the teachings of our Vedic Dharma as elaborated by Sri Kanchi Mahaswaigal in his book "Voice of God - 7 Volumes " that I hold it as the best source for our Vedic Dharma  and which I consider as my constant companion for the rest of my life .

1208
General topics / Re: Quotes from Shankaracharya's
« on: June 02, 2014, 10:11:41 PM »
The concluding sukta of the Rgveda contains a hymn that should be regarded as having a higher significance than the national anthem of any country: it is a prayer for amity among all nations, a true international anthem. "May mankind be of one mind," it goes. "May it have a common goal. May all hearts be united in love. And with the mind and the goal being one may all of us live in happiness."

Kanchi Paramacharya

1209
General Discussion / Re: Rough Notebook-Open Forum
« on: June 02, 2014, 06:10:14 PM »
Subramaniam Sir

With regard to your questions , I can say my grand father ( my mothers father ) nearly lived like what you have asked except that  he did not do Agni Hotram and he lived till 98 years . As for me right from the time my father died in 1999 till date I do the ammavasya regularly ( I hardly have missed any ammavasya ) , do the Mahalaya Tarpanam and annual Sraddham and give very generously to my family priest . In fact I was blessed to get a wonderful family priest after the death of my father as when he died he never had a priest and the last 10 years of my fathers life he never did any tarpams etc as the regular family priest who used to come died in an accident and he got fed up with others who were not coming on time and some would never turn up at all etc etc .
My Yoga Journey ( by the grace of Swami Sivananda ) started in mid 1997 and might be that was the grace that blessed me with a very good and learned priest after my father's death in Mid 1999 and till now I am maintaining him and giving him generously daksina and also contributing financially to his Vedic Trust whenever I can . It was due to this priest I could get a close audience with  Sringeri Acharya Sri Sri Bharati Teerta Mahaswmigal when he visited Chennai in 2012 for Chaturmasya and I consider it as another big blessing in my life .

I know that I cant live a life as a true Brahmin as per the questions given by you but at the same time I felt that one must understand in depth as much as possible and practice as much as one can  the Vedic Dharma as practiced by our ancestors which are nothing but instructions from the Rishis  . India is a land of excellent spiritual and cultural treasures like Vedic Dharma , Yoga Sastra , Ayurveda , Siddha , Vaastu Sastra , Silpa Sastra , Astrology , Temple Architecture , Natya Sastra , Music etc etc and one must do one's best to Understand and learn at least one of these treasures and pass it on to the next generation  . My Primary sadhana is the Yoga Sadhana but at the same time being a Brahmin I felt that I must at least Understand the essentials of the Vedic Dharma as relevant to one's day to day life and in this regard I can consider myself only as a student still studying the same and trying to imbibe as much as possible in my own day to day life and for this I take guidance from the teachings of Kanchi Mahaswamigaland Sringer Acharyas .

There is one set of people who believe that either you follow all the rules of  a Brahmin or follow none .I do not subscribe to this view .I have kept for myself the priority  to study and follow what best as I can . One thing is for sure if you follow these Vedica Karmas in form and spirit it promotes lot of sattva and keeps the mind calm and  one pointed and that is very key for pursuing Jnana Marga .
BTW we tend to take consolation from the fact that not many people are following these things .It depends upon what sort of people whom you keep meeting in day to day life . There are still dedicated people belonging to Kanchi and Sringeri Mutt and other Vaishnava Mutts who follow these things very seriously and after retirement they spend more time in these activities . These people are spending their retirement time very wisely instead of watching TV / Reading News papers non stop . My brother who is in USA is right now learning Sri Rudram from a software consultant in USA who even though staying in USA is very seriously following the  Vedic Dharma as much as possible there and in fact teaching others Sri Rudram .So there are still people attending their day to day work plus following their Vedic Dharma as much as possible .They were blessed to be initiated  in to this path quite early in their life by their parents / Grandparents and those samskaras still stay with them when they grow up . For the rest I feel instead of giving it up as too late I say "Better late than Never ".


1210
General Discussion / Re: performing rituals to the departed
« on: June 02, 2014, 02:23:18 PM »
Thanks Sri Ravi for continuing to share Sage TGNs views on Karmic Imprints and how it gets transferred from Parents to Children and how one needs to get rid of the same .
One question I have here . We have seen / heard about cases where the couple are very pious and devoted but have a son who is highly notorious and people say that the parents are good but the son has inherited these  negative traits form his Uncle ( either father's side / mother side ) .So how  can this be explained ? Are imprints to be taken to be the collective imprints of the whole family ( parents , grandparents , cousins , uncles , relatives and extended relatives etc etc )  and not just the  imprints of the couple in question ?
In this regard I wish to point out one incident in Kanchi Mahaswamigal's life about a boy whose father was a great Vedic Scholar but his son was smoking Cigarettes and taking alcohol and even though Kanchi Mahaswamigal advised him to mend his ways he ran away refusing to mend his ways and no idea what happened to him later  ( This incident was discussed in this forum itself before ). So  my take is that this boys father being a Vedic Scholar well known to Kanchi Paramacharya would not have such qualities ( like smoking / drinking ) then how come this boy have those qualities ?

1211
General topics / Re: Quotes from Shankaracharya's
« on: June 01, 2014, 10:30:11 PM »

1212
General Discussion / Re: performing rituals to the departed
« on: June 01, 2014, 06:51:11 PM »
Quote
In this sadas,there were a couple of persons who chanted the Rig vEda(if I recall right)and they announced that they were specially deputed to learn it from a solitary exponent of that Branch of Veda in the North west by Kanchi mahAswAmi

This is the real why many of the branches of Vedas were lost and how due to the timely arrival of Kanchi Mahaswamigal *on this earth some of the branches of Vedas  that were on the verge of dying were preserved and being now passed on to the next generation . No doubt today CDs , Pen Drives etc are available to store the Vedic Mantras . They can be useful for laypeople like us to listen but for Vedas to really be kept alive they need to have real humans taking interest in the same and follow the Guru Sishya Sampradaya to learn and pass it on to others . For those individuals who cannot be part of this direct Guru Sishya relationship best is to help support those who are doing this .

* : When I say that Sri Kanchi Mahaswaigal did lot of work in preserving the Vedic tradition ,I do not mean to say that no other Acharya / Individual /Institution did the same . Many people have contributed to the revival of Vedic Dharma in the last 100 years or so  in various ways  but since I am more aware of the role played by Sri Kanchi Acharya I am pointing this fact .

1213
General Discussion / Re: performing rituals to the departed
« on: June 01, 2014, 01:33:23 PM »
Quote
So,I am afraid your friend is totally mistaken and his claim of 20000+  mantras not containing any references to pitr karma goes up in air

When it comes to Vedic Mantras we need to understand that the current available Mantras is only a part of what was originally available and many Vedic Branches have been lost .  Kanchi Mahaswamigal did extensive work to see to it that what is available does not shrink further due to lack of people taking interest in preserving Vedas . When he was talking of preserving Vedas he was not talking just of preserving it in CDs/Printed books etc but in real human form through teacher student relationship .So when we claim some thing is missing in Vedas we have to first understand that we are basing our views only with regard to the available Vedic Mantras and not the Original set of Vedic Mantras .

Coming to the topic of doing rituals and ceremonies for the dead there is one view that these are basically designed by the selfish Brahminical priestly class to further their own interest . No doubt there is a lot of commercial exploitation of these rituals / ceremonies by the Priestly class but there are lot of people who also do these things sincerely and I go with what Sri Kanchi Maha Swamigal has said about how to do these rituals and ceremonies .


1214
Tripura Rahasya and other ancient works / Re: The Vedas
« on: May 31, 2014, 08:53:32 PM »
Quote
.If only a few get to read this and even understand a little of this,and feel the urge to explore the vedas,it will be a homage to this great sage with whom it has been a privilege for us to have lived in this birth on terra firma.His words have the power that will bear fruit in its time.

Dear Sri Ravi

Thanks for starting this thread on "Vedas" with the beautiful explanation of the same by Kanchi Maha Swamigal .   His explanations on Vedas and other things related to Indian Culture is always very refreshing and inspiring .

Jaya Jaya Shankara Hara Hara Shankara .

1215
General Discussion / Re: Rough Notebook-Open Forum
« on: May 30, 2014, 11:31:42 AM »
Do not attempt to run away from surroundings that are not to your liking. God has placed you there to make you grow quickly. If you get all your desired comforts in a particular place you will not grow strong. So never complain about unfavourable surroundings. Triumph over all difficulties ~Swami Sivananda

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