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Messages - Nagaraj

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136
General Discussion / Re: my musings
« on: June 17, 2016, 09:22:41 AM »
Stray thoughts....

.....such is life!

--

137
General Discussion / Re: shri Graham Boyd attains Bhagavan's abode
« on: June 17, 2016, 07:46:09 AM »
Om.


Request somebody to share Sri Graham's picture.

138
Tamil poet Kannadasan sang,

"satti suttadhadaa kai vittadhadaa"

When the hands that carry the pots feels the heat of the pot, it drops it immediately!

the Pig relishes eating the filth,
without knowing about the filth,
the moment it knows,
it will cease from eating it!



In a way, we are all running like this, but actually going no where!

The moment, Vichara steps in, the running slow down, slows down and eventually stops altogether when it is known that we are going nowhere!

Dear Sri Anil Ji, I have seen people becoming senile after retirement, since they are so used to working, engaging in activities, there are unable to remain quiet! How long the body can cater to the needs of the mind? The mind is restless! They end up becoming slaves of Karmas, some engage in good activities, yet remain restless!

Therefore, one should retire before one's reirement, die before the body's death! Send our near and dear ones to heavens before Lord of Death takes them all by surprise and leave us in lurch!

Death is one topic, evenpeople immersed in Spirituality do not bother looking it deeply enough! Spirituality seem to give us some temporary anesthesia from the death, that we are the Self it is deathless. But when real Death strikes, man is shaken and no spirituality or immortality helps!

One has to contemplate deeply about Death and it results in "Mritunjayam"

--

139
Quote
how do the karmas in themselves carry the seeds of their own destruction?

Dear Sri Anil ji,

I present below some abstract expressions as it came forth!

Just as a cracker that is lit would get exploded,
just as life would end in death,
Just as a dream ends upon waking up,
just as with the sun rise darkness ceases,
with the dawn of knowledge karmas end!

All that has a beginning, carries its own end for sure, this is inevitable!

When True Jnana shines, that is when the Self chooses to come out of its cocoon of ignorance, karma ends then and there!

How long can we carry this body that is so burden-some? How long can one keep walking, running? Another name for Jiva is Karma!

How long can one bind himself in various karmas, good or bad!

Just as the Sun's light cannot be curtailed, darkness's destruction cannot be curtailed for long!

So long one wakes up from sleep, that long karmas have a rein!

So long the Self chooses, that long Karmas have a rein!

This very moment, it can end, if the Self chooses so!

yamevaiṣa vṛṇute, tena labhyas tasyaiṣa ātmā vivṛṇute tanῡṁ svām.
He whom the Self chooses, by him the Self is gained. (Kathopanishad)

Self is free from Karma at all times, If the knowledge of Self is gained, there is no Karma for him! If there is no Kartrutva--Bhava, there is no Karma. If there is the Kartrutva-Bhava, there is Karma.

How long can one carry the burden of doership? Not long enough!

He who has known Self, is free from Karma!

--

140
Dear Sri Anil ji, this is the other version of the same essence -

in some instance, when some devotee came to Bhagavan and was crying about his difficulties then an ashram inmate, to console this devotee by saying "its like Being in the shore of Ganges, you are crying out of thirst!" Muruganar just walks in and quotes from some old tamil verse to that devotee, "its like as if you are neck deep in th ganges water itself and are crying out of thirst"

Bhagavan who was silently looking at all these, said to Muruganar and to the other devotees "Apdi illa voi" "Its like as if Ganges herself is crying out of thirst".

--

141
Quote
And one's ignorance of this self-revealing immediacy of Divine Presence is no proof to the contrary. If the owl does not see the sun that illumines the whole world, it is certainly due to defectiveness in the owl's sight, and it is certainly not the sun's fault. The Supreme Lord is the Eternal Grace. Only thing: The questioner here, in my view,is simply not aware that turning to God and desiring His Grace is itself Grace!"

Dear Sri Anil Ji,

Nice thoughts! Just one point i would like to make, which would add value to your observation. It is not the defectiveness of the owl's sight, but the very owl itself is defective! To illustrate further with a better example, if we take the Rope-Snake scenario, is it the defect of the Snake that it is unable to see the Rope? The very snake itself is the defect!

Bhagavan beautifully illustrated this to Velacheri Ranga Iyer:

One day I told Bhagwan, "Bhagwan has no Grace for me." Bhagwan replied, "Your statement is like that of a man who, standing in the huge floods of the Ganges, complains he is thirsty, and desires a bottle of tap water may be sent to him from Tanjore."

--

142
General Discussion / Re: Teachings of Sri Ramakrishna
« on: June 13, 2016, 08:26:25 AM »
"Try to find out what this  'I' is. Is this 'I' the bones or flesh or blood or intestines? Seeking the 'I', you discover 'Thou'. In other words, nothing exists inside you but the power of God. There is no 'I', but only 'He'. (To Pasupati) You have so much wealth, but you have no egotism. It is not possible to rid oneself altogether of the ego; so, as long as it is there, let the rascal remain as the servant of God. (All laugh.) The ego that makes a man feel he is a devotee of God or a son of God or a servant of God is good. But the ego that makes a man attached to 'woman and gold' is the 'unripe ego'. That ego is to be renounced."

-

143
Dear Sri Anil Ji,

The whole essence is summed up in the below Vedic Mantra:

ॐ पूर्णमदः पूर्णमिदं पूर्णात्पुर्णमुदच्यते
पूर्णस्य​ पूर्णमादाय पूर्णमेवावशिष्यते ॥

ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ॥


Meaning:

1: Om, That (Outer World) is Purna (Full with Divine Consciousness); This (Inner World) is also Purna (Full with Divine Consciousness); From Purna comes Purna (From the Fullness of Divine Consciousness the World is manifested),
2: Taking Purna from Purna, Purna Indeed Remains (Because Divine Consciousness is Non-Dual and Infinite).

3: Om Peace, Peace, Peace.

(Source)

Jivatman that we has has emerged from the Paramatman is Purna indeed. What comes from Purna is Purna only!

my little interpretation -

This is Purna (and) That is Purna
From Purna, Purna only comes
From Purna, (even if some of it - 'Purnam') is taken out, (then also) only Purnam alone remains as residue
Peace Peace Peace

This sense of difference that one feels, the Jivatma Bhava, Dehatma Bhava is here known to be Purnam itself. Also the Shad Vikaras, the 6 vices known collectively as the 'Ego' are naturally harmonised if this Truth is known Here and Now. These qualities are known as Vikaras only when Jivabrahma-Aikya is broken, otherwise, these qualities become virtues by verily being the Purnam.

--

144
General Discussion / Re: meditation with open eyes
« on: June 11, 2016, 09:48:32 AM »
Dear Dr Sundaram,

Bhagavan never said anywhere that you should overcome sleep. That is not the aim of Self Enquiry. When the body needs sleep, one should not rebel with the needs of the body. Is Self Realisation for the Body or you? What matters if the Eyes are open or closed? Let the body take its course. If the eyes want to close let it close, if they want to be open let it be. Do not interfere with the nature of the body.

Would you like to enquire to yourself in first place why you want to meditate? Why are you meditating? What do you want? What do you really want? What is it that you are looking for? or aiming for?

These questions, genuine enquiry would open up flood gates of the grace to innundate!

--

145

Yes, in that sense even speaking of Self-realization is a delusion. Yes, Sri Bhagwan has taught that since people at large are under the delusion that non-Self is the Self and therefore the unreal the Real, that they have to be weaned out of it by the other delusion known as Self-realization, just as a thorn is used to take out another that is embedded. Sri Bhagwan has taught that because really the Self is always the Self, and therefore, there is no such thing as realizing It.
Sri Bahgwan: Who is to realize what, and how, when all that exists is the Self and nothing but the Self?

There is another perspective: Elsewhere, Sri Bhagwan has taught that the Vedantic Text "All is Brahman" means that the world is real as the Self. However, if one regards the world as non-Self, it is not real. This is profound. Everything, whether we call it illusion, ignorance, or Divine Play (Lila), must be within the Self and not apart from it.  So, world, body, non-Self, et al, are within the very Swarupa (the Self)!!! What a great clue for all earnest practisers of the Path of Atma-vichara!

Beautiful expressions Sri Anil Ji,

Yes it is Lila. This Lila is the Shakti Manifestation. Lalita Parameswari. It also reminds me of "Nasadiya Sukta" from Rig Veda.

Bhagavan says:

You are yourself the tattva. Is there a different one to know the tattva of another? How can you exist apart from the tattva? The very fact of your existence makes you ask this question. Your very existence is the tattva. Give up the habiliments of the tattva and remain in your essential nature. All the Scriptures tell you only not to waste your efforts in non-truth - non-tattva. Give up the nontattva. Then tattva remains always shining pure and single.

In all Bhagavan's quotes, i always only like to again and again mention the trickery of language which conveys as some action to be done "Give up the habiliments of the tattva and remain in your essential nature" These are want of better words! How does one "Give up" and How does one "Remain in essential nature"

We can best say it is a Re-Cognition (recognition) What to give up, How to remain! Who gives up, Who remains?

You have said it beautifully - "just as a thorn is used to take out another that is embedded" similalry like a stick is used to burn the corpse is itself put into the fire! Like a Camphor burns is fire, is itself consumed to leave ho residue! This is the principle behind the usage of Vibhuti-Tripundra (Bhasma) Bhagavan used to adorn on his forehead.

Thanks my friend.

--

146
Dear friend,

Having said as above about the qualities of Sraddha. I am urged to take back my words for expressing some prerequisite for Self Realisation!

As i have expressed in my previous post, yesterday, the Self Realisation is Ahetuka (अहेतुक) Reasonless! When we see Bhagavan's story, he never aspired for Self Realisation, he knew nothing about Self Realisation. What reason is it that Self became revealed to him? No reason - Ahetuka (अहेतुक) Reasonless!!

Again my friend, I repeat my post here as it is!

http://www.arunachala-ramana.org/forum/index.php?topic=6273.msg84626#msg84626

Ignorance is never admitted! There is no Ignorance! There is no point in conveying something needs to be done in order to overcome this ignorace! This is maya!

Beyond a point it cannot be rationalized!

There is no attainment, in real sense. There is no annihilation of anything in real sense. This paradoxical phenomenon can at the closest be compared to waking from sleep-dream, but even this is imperfect as the Self never sleeps!

There is no Ignorance. There is no ignorance! There is no Self Realisation as Verb!

Self is Sraddha. There is no practicing Sraddha, cultivating Sraddha. We are the Self! period.

There is no greater mystery than this, that we keep
seeking reality though in fact we are reality.   We
think that there is something hiding reality and that
this must be destroyed before reality is gained.
How ridiculous!   A day will dawn when you will laugh
at all your past efforts.  That which will be the day
you laugh is also here and now.
Bhagavan

--

147
Quote
The Engineer asked how Grace has to be got?
Sri Bhagwan: Grace is the Self. It is not manifest because of ignorance prevailing. With sraddha, it will become manifest.
Sraddha, Grace, Light, Spirit are all synonymous with the Self.

Dear Sri Anil ji, Grace is everything! Without it, nothing is possible! It is akin to saying, without the Self, nothing is possible! You have so beautifully conveyed - Sraddha, Grace, Light, Spirit are all synonymous with the Self! If you look at my post, though it might seem slightly diverging from the response you have sought for, yet i have not deviated from the very line of teachings of Bhagawan and have conveyed the very response in a rather different manner. These are just ways of conveying the essence finally. What is of prime importance is the 'essence' ultimately!

We can say it this way as well - that the Self remains unmanifest due to ignorance, avidya or maya! It becomes manifest or revealed by the touch of grace of the Guru. The same essence is conveyed either way! We may say, the Self remains ever manifest and like Krishna bestowed upon Arjuna Divya Chakshus to be able to see the divine form of the Lord. Till then it remained unmanifest in the eyes or Arjuna!

Quote
I feel that what you have written can be conveyed to one who follows Sri Bhagwan's Vichara comprehensively and adequately in the way as under:

Dear Friend, I am caught up with some work, i am unable to spend enough time to compile/edit my response, i am just spontaneously responding. But just one thought is coming out at the moment that Bhagavan left or expressed no precondition at all in any manner that everybody is Self! Everybody is the Self in the eyes of the Jnani - Bhagavan has said so. Our own Self realisation is the greatest help we can render to the world. Therefore it goes to show that one is the Pristine Self and it is not just limited to one who follows Bhagavan's Atma Vichara comprehensively. whether or not one follows, one is the Self!

When the Guru says so, why are we not able to trust him? He never at a moment allowed or accepted that one is the Non Self at any moment. If any body felt so, he asked them to look carefully, i.e. enquire and see who is it? - this you have beautifully conveyed. The Self is ever revealed, and is not so somethin to be attained in the future, it is ever attained! This feeling of I am yet to realise my Self is an error! We may say as it is a willful error by one Self! There can possibly be no Avidya, Igorance. It is impossible! If one feels so then Bhagavan said No, it is not so, see, look carefully, enquire who feels thus! Therfore, If one truly has such hunger, this error will end this very moment. But how?

Quote
Yes, "Sarvam khalvidam Brahma", that is, All is Brahman or the Self. Sri Bahgwan has taught that the Self is ever manifest, ever revealed and ever realized, never non-realized. Well, but one, due to ignorance prevailing, says that he has not realized the Self. The question of paramount importance is: Who says that he is not realized, who says that Self is not manifest? Self does not say so, and the one who says does not exist. Hence the urgent necessity to ask, 'Who am I?' and realize the Swarupa, free of the 'I'-thought, which rises, usurps and covers the Atma-swarupa or the Self.

Dear Friend, our Guru Bhagavan leaves no gap at all! As you have beautifully expressed in the paragraph above. The very question that burns in the hearts of such a Mumukshu, is itself Sraddha. He enquires as per the in instructions of the Guru and the if the urge of the aspirant reaches the Self, it is revealed to him then and there in that very moment!

The matter of importance is that our call or our urge or our enquiry has to reach the ears of the Self. This directly depends on the burning urge of the aspirant. Even if a baby is hungry, it needs to cry audible enough for the mother to hear and then she comes and feeds the baby.

But if the urge is casual one, not a burning one, the voice may not reach the Self for the Self to reaveled itself! There has to be such a hunger for it! As we have seen how Ramakrishna immerses Vivekananda's head within water and when he grasped for breath he was pulled out and Ramakrishna said if he has such an urge to see God as he wanted to breathe when he rasped for breath, he could see God!

A person having one leg in the quest of Self and another in the worldly matters, cannot be said to be having the qualities of a Mumukshu, such a person is just a visitor, he is curious, has faith, but his hunger is not deep enough as illustrated the incident of Vivekananda. This does not mean one has leave everything worldly but just that one has to have realised about the urgent need to realise oneself! you have also used the word URGENT NEED. It shows the intensity! Though at times he may feel the importance to realise his Self, his call or appeal or voice remains unheard by the Self! There is no real hunger to realise. "He whom the Self chooses, by him the Self is gained." If the Self has to choose oneself, then such hunger should be there, this hunger can also be understood as real Sraddha. If such hunger is there, like a Gun powder catches fire, just one moment of Self enquiry will be enough! Else repeated practices are required like charcoal, that may burn eternally but one has to have that Hunger to end this error-'error'!

Sraddha is this urgent want to realise the Self beyond anything else! This want is something like one's life depended on it! This is what I would like to add to your observation "I feel that what you have written can be conveyed to one who follows Sri Bhagwan's Vichara comprehensively and adequately in the way as under"

How does Sraddha result?

Having known the nature of this world even partly who wouldn't show Urgency? Scriptures say, a seeker of Truth seeks his Self just as a person who has his head on fire would seek water. This sense of urgency to redeem ourselves is also Sraddha!

Sraddha, then it varies from person to person depending on their hunger! We have people who say, let me wait for my retirement then i will spend time on spirituality! On the other hand we do have young people who have recognised the urgent need to realise the Self! We have some who are stuck with various karmas but in midst of all these their hunger for Self is as good as their heads on fire and they search for water with such intensity! Some are least bothered! Some are so near yet so far, being lost in the whole glamour of spiritial environment around a Guru. all these are types of Sraddha. They all eventually reach the ocean slowly and slowly. The only way is forward!

We have all kinds of people! We have the famous verse in Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says 4 kind of people worship me:

चतुर्विधा भजन्ते मां जनाः सुकृतिनोऽर्जुन ।
आर्तो जिज्ञासुरर्थार्थी ज्ञानी च भरतर्षभ ॥

the suffering distressed, the seeker for material gain, the seeker for knowledge inquisitive ones, and Jnanis who adore Me with knowledge!

Hence Sraddha varies from person to person. Some may just have academic desire, some may just want to know so that they cant talk and enjoy being a guru. only rarely one may want to genuinely want to end this samsara taapa. only such Sraddha will result in the complete annihilation of the error-error. only such person's call reaches the ears of the Self! Him the Self Chooses. Him whom the Self chooses alone has complete Sraddha! None else! Other have to taste the illusive world for some more time, until they realise there is no essence in the world!

More later, my friend, Bhagawan willing, we will look further. Thank for for this wonderful opportunity to contemplate on Sraddha.

--

148
Dear Sri Anil ji,

With the context of usage of the word 'manifest', i am sure that you have as well wished to convey the same as i have expresssed and the eternal nature of the Self is ever manifest. Just i have expressed in a manner that has helped me to convey what i have wished to express on the above topic in discussion.

--

149
Quote

Sri Bhagwan is the Self. Sri Arunachala is the Self. This is settled here at least in this forum. Isn't it? However, we all are aware of the 'Manifestation of Deep Sradha', in Her absolute Purity, that Sri Bhagwan obviously had for Sri Arunachala while embodied.  Well, my next question is: What exactly is this Sradha that a Great Jnani appears to possess, and which manifests naturally and spontaneously in Him, as In Sri Bhagwan? What is the nature of this Sradha? Can anyone here in this forum share their understanding of and insight into a Jnani's Sradha for either His Guru or the Omnipresent Divinity? I shall be very happy if you respond to this question, which, in my view, is of paramount importance for all seekers and sadhakas, irrespective of spiritual practices they are following.

Dear Sri Anil ji,

I felt the usage of the word manifest may not be the right usage. Even previously you had mentioned as follows:

Quote
"Self is not manifest due to ignorance, with Sradha for one's Guru  and and His Teaching It will become manifest."

For we know that the Self is ever manifest, there is not a time when the Self is not manifest. There is no reason why the self is not known to any body (meaning, the Self if ever revealed). If you may allow me to express rather freely - what is called as ignorance or avidya is just a willful forgetfulness of the Self (but can we really call it forgetfulness)! There is no reason why this neiscience manifests. Ignorance, Avidya manifest but Self shines ever endlessly! Manifest is more appropriate to use here in this context. Or can we say - Self willfully manifests as Ignorance or Avidya!

yamevaiṣa vṛṇute, tena labhyas tasyaiṣa ātmā vivṛṇute tanῡṁ svām.
He whom the Self chooses, by him the Self is gained. (Kathopanishad)


What reason can be attributed to this nature of the Self? The same is wonderfully expressed in Tiruvachakam by Manickavachakar. He says:

avan arulAlE avan thAL vaNangi
By his grace is his feet worshiped


Coming back to Sraddha. What is this Sraddha that a Jnani possesses, that we all do not posses? (reminds Bhagavan's "give up the possessor too) Do such great souls have some wonderful gift that we do not possess which we need to acquire anew? Have they cultivated it over a period of lifetime(s) (through past lives)? Or due to some stroke of luck have they attained some 'supernatural state' what is celebrated as 'Self Realised' and so on... ?

Moreover, In Kathopanishad, Yama says to Nachiketa as follows just before the above quoted line (Kathopanishad):

nāyam ātmā pravacanena labhyo na medhayā, na bahunā śrutena
This Atman cannot be attained by study of the Vedas, nor by intelligence, nor by much hearing.


So by what possible way is it gained (to ponder - can it be gained)? Again this question is by itself endless. It is clear, that it is not possible to be gained, cultivated or developed by practice. In this context, what is this Sraddha that we are contemplating about - this is something to ponder about!

What is it by which Self is known? What reason can we attribute for this knowing, that is knowing the already known? Is it possible to attribute a reason for this? It is Ahetuka (अहेतुक) Reasonless! By no special reason this miraculous 'phenomenon' occurs!

What is Sraddha? Who knows? We can only speculate! Does Sraddha mean sincere sadhana? We can say so, yes, Sraddha is the sincere accomplishment of some sankalpa (desired end). Be it Wordly or Spiritual activity! In worldly sense, it is sincere effort made towards attaining a particular end. In Spiritual sense also we can say, it is out of love some sadhana is performed for the attainment of the desired grace of Lord. Verily, it is a prayer, an appeal, meaning in a general sense that O Lord, I am doing all these very sincerely, please do the needful for me (what is best for me)! We may now call such Sraddha as the Parisramam 'effort' made in order to attain one's welfare!

The more such prayer is made, be it worldly or spiritually, respective results result! In the case of Spiritual Parisramam 'effort' - the more such Parisramam 'efforts' are made it results in Chitta Shuddhi - Purity, what is called as Naishkarmya! Here our Parisramam 'effort' becomes (अहेतुक) Reasonless as well. This is called Para Bhakti. When Ones own Self is pleased, [if we may say so only poetically as it is ((अहेतुक) Reasonless)], then "He whom the Self chooses, by him the Self is gained"

Such Parisramam 'effort' is what meant as Sraddha:

श्रद्धावां लभते ज्ञानं तत्परः संयतेन्द्रियः ।
ज्ञानं लब्ध्वा परां शान्तिमचिरेणाधिगच्छति ॥

śraddhāvāṃ labhate j?ānaṃ tatparaḥ saṃyatendriyaḥ,
j?ānaṃ labdhvā parāṃ śāntimacireṇādhigacchati.

(Such - N) a man of faith obtains the Jnanam (Self knowledge - N) who has Harmonised the senses towards the Supreme Tat (Truth), and having obtained Jnanam (Self knowledge - N), they obtain Supreme Peace.

(own translation - N, you may want to cross-refer)

We always like to believe that Jnanis have some thing special in them that we do not have and we try to fill this incompleteness by various efforts. This is an error but it is necessary for chitta shuddhi! The Jnani says through the eternal language of Mauna - Silence that there is no difference between Him and Us. Below is the dictum of Bhagavan:

You and I are the same.
What I have done is surely possible for all.
You are the Self
now and can never be anything else.
Throw your worries to the wind,
turn within and find Peace.


With these, i conclude my ramblings. Below, i present a couple of quotes of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj:

My world is just like yours. I see, I hear, I feel, I think, I speak and act in a world I perceive, just like you. But with you it is all, with me it is nothing. Knowing the world to be a part of myself, I pay it no more attention than you pay to the food you have eaten. While being prepared and eaten, the food is separate from you and your mind is on it; once swallowed, you become totally unconscious of it. I have eaten up the world and I need not think of it any more.

Of course we live in one world. Only I see it as it is, while you don't. You see yourself in the world, while I see the world in myself. To you, you get born and die, while to me, the world appears and disappears. Our world is real, but your view of it is not. There is no wall between us, except the one built by you. There is nothing wrong with the senses, it is your imagination that misleads you. It covers up the world as it is, with what you imagine it to be -- something existing independently of you and yet closely following your inherited, or acquired patterns. There is a deep contradiction in your attitude, which you do not see and which is the cause of sorrow.

I see what you too could see, here and now, but for the wrong focus of your attention. You give no attention to your self. Your mind is all with things, people and ideas, never with your self. Bring your self into focus, become aware of your own existence.

--

150
Dear Sri Anil ji, you have raised a simple question about faith. श्रद्धा is the word. Though your question is so simple as the size of a needle, yet its potential is limitless as simply understanding the word श्रद्धा fully thoroughly would unravel everything!

We have already seen few popular definitions of श्रद्धा from the Vivekachudamani:

shAstrasya guruvAkyasya satyabuddhyavadhAraNam |
sA shraddhA kathitA sadbhiryayA vastUpalabhyate ||

"Holding with conviction the words of shAstra and guru
to be true is called shraddhA by the Holy. By her (श्रद्धा)
is attained reality."

In Tatvabodha, Shankara says the same:

श्रद्धा कीदृशी ?
गुरुवेदान्तवाक्यादिषु विश्वासः श्रद्धा ।


shradDhA kIdRushI ?
guruvEdAntavAkyAdiShu vishvAsah shradDhA .

What is the nature of shradDhA ?
Faith in the words of the guru and vEdAntA (scriptures) is shradDhA

This word Shraddha is most dear to the Astika school of Indian school for we believe in the existence of the soul or spirit and its nature of beginning-less and endlessness.  Where as the Nastika schools of Jaina Buddha and Charvarka do not believe in the existence of Soul or God so on what can they possibly show faith onto? Strictly speaking even the words Nirvana Moksha etc are all offshoots of Buddhists and Jains schools. What gets Nirvana and what gets Moksha? Nirvana or Moksha is relevant for the Nastika schools but not for the Astika schools who believe in Atmic Principle. Shankara Sang in Nirvana Shatkam. But of-course we have been using these terms only for want of expressing the ecstasy or joy of knowing ourselves!

While the above definition would suffice to most of us. I would like to present below from the talks of Sri Akhandananda Saraswati Swamiji, a great Advaitic Sage, in Hindi. I am sure you would like it and it would be a good fire to our contemplation.

"श्रदिति सत्यस्य नाम, तदस्यां धीयते इति श्रद्धा" - यह निरूक्त-व्याख्याकार का मत है (व्याख्याकार - Shankara - Nagaraj)[/i] । "श्रदिति आस्तिकताया विधानम्" - यह मध्वाचार्य बोलते हैं। सत् को परोक्ष बनाने के लिए श्रत् कर दिया। रेफ जो उसमें मिलाया है, वह सत् को परोक्ष करने के लिए। परोक्ष में श्रद्धा होती है।

कोई हमको गोद में उठा ले तो वह तो प्रत्यक्ष है। उसमें श्रद्धा क्या? जैसे कोई शिशु को अपने गोद में रखकर उससे प्रेम करता है, वैसे बिना गोद में लिये ही मुझसे कोई वैसे ही प्रेम कर रहा है, ऐसो श्रद्धा।


(Here, we have to observe the beauty of the Language Sanskrit, it gives freedom to the reader to take it as one sees it. One is free to take it as nondual or dual or in any new way as well. However one happens to see it - N. This is why we celebrate Vyasa on Guru Purnima as Vyasa is common to all schools. The most popular Seers, Shankara, Ramanuja, Madhvacharya and others all trace their lineage to Guru Vyasa. Vyasa is acceptable to all as he never mentions about the nature of Self at all, like Bhagavan says, whether it is Advaita or Dvaita or Visishtadvaita, first realise then see for yourself!)

आप देखें - जो हमको साँस लेने को हवा दे रहा है - वह हमारे सामने आकर बताता है, हम तुम्हें झल रहे हैं ? बिना हमको दिखाये ही जो रोशनी दे रहा है - बताता है कि मैं तुम्हारे घर में दिया जलाता हूँ। बिना धूपबत्ती दिखाये ही जो तुम्हारी नासिका को सुगन्ध देता है-अजी, सुगन्ध को छोड़ो, वायु को छोड़ो, जिसने नाक दी है सुगन्ध ग्रहण करने के लिए, जिव्हा दी है रस ग्रहण करने के लिए, जिसने त्वचा दी है, स्पर्श का अनुभव करने के लिए, जिसने नेत्र दिया है देखने के लिए।

सूर्य - चन्द्रमा की रोशनी छोड़ो, जिसने ऐसी धौंकनी बना दी है भीतर कि वह बारम्बार पुरानी हवा को छोड़े और नयी हवा खींचती रहे। उस शिल्पी को, उस रचनाकार को देखो,देखो नहीं, उस पर श्रद्धा करो - "श्रद्धत्स्व सोम्य, श्रद्धावित्तो भूत्वा आत्मानं पश्येत्" श्रद्धा की पूँजी लेकर अपने आप में इस परमात्मा को देखो। "श्रद्धया सत्यमाप्यते। श्रद्धयापरयोपेताः।" परया का अर्थ है परकाष्ठा - वही हमारे जीवन को भर रही है। प्राणान्त उपस्थित होने पर भी, विकट-से-विकट परिस्थिति आने पर भी, सब कुछ टूट जाय पर श्रद्धा न टूटे। "श्रद्धाधनेन मुनिना" मधुसूदन सरस्वती कहते हैं - भाई हमारे पास कोई धन नहीं है, एक ही धन है-श्रद्धा। मैं संन्यासी हूँ, मेरे पास और कोई सम्पदा नहीं है, केवल श्रद्धा की सम्पदा है। श्रद्धा की सम्पत्ति से युक्त रहो।

"ते मे युक्ततमा मताः"। आप जानते हैं गीता में "युक्त" शब्द का भी प्रयोग है और 'युक्ततम" शब्द का भी प्रयोग है। स्थितप्रज्ञ के लिए युक्त शब्द का प्रयोग है। आपके ध्यान में होगा-"युक्त आसीत मत्परः"। स्थितप्रज्ञ को बताया कि वह युक्त है-बिखरा हुआ नहीं है, मिला हुआ है, जो बिखर गया वह टूट गया, फूट गया, अयुक्त है। हाथ युक्त है, पाँव युक्त है। सब युक्त, युक्त है, लेकिन भगवान ने युक्त को वहीं तक नहीं छोड़ा - योगी को भी युक्त बताया।




Shrad is Sat. Dha is Dharana to meditate. But how to meditate on the Truth that is ones own Self? If it is different from us then it would be as Madhvacharya has seen different. We can see that it is not wrong on the part of those who see duality as well! Either way, each serves the purpose of the reader the Sadhaka as he sees. "श्रदिति सत्यस्य नाम, तदस्यां धीयते इति श्रद्धा" This is verily a Brahmastram as Bhagavan says in various contexts. But when we say, ShradDha, is there somebody who is separate who has to do Dharana and is there some entity which is Sat, upon which one has to do Dharan upon? This inquiry by itself causes destruction of duality.

श्रीं The Bija of Goddess is the Self. The Shiva-Shakti Aikya.

Therefore, Shraddha is the Self. Just like a simile or a metaphorm, these are just words to convey for the joy of Self - may we say? To Have Faith means - to be the Self. To be Who we Truly are - That is Shraddha. Being the Being is Shraddha. To Be in Abidance is Shraddha. Again we such be careful not to get lost in the words such as "Be" "Being" "To Abide" etc. these verbs have no place here. It indirectly conveys that one has to abide in Self, One has to meditate on the Self constantly etc. but where in reality can one meditate on something that is verily oneself? Tat Tvam Asi (and the other 3 Mahavakyas) is Shradha from Advaita point of view. Where as, in dual schools Shraddha takes a different picture altogether! Therefore to Meditate on Self or to Be the Self or to Abide as Self simply means like pouring water into water - While again, here, pouring is just like a simile or a metaphor to only convey the essence. There is no Pouring in reality! But when the Mind sees pouring as some special effort, it takes a different route!

Shradha is another name for the Self! The Self is constantly aware of Itself. There is no Ignorance, there is no ignorance at any point as Jnaneshwar sings!

Hope this bit is of some value to you. I have experssed for my own joy. Atmanastu Kaamaya (Br. Upanishad)
I have ended up writing a rather long post.

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