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  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by auh View Post
    Sir, it will not take much time to frame another set of rules to fit such reasoning. All sorts of theories can thrive in such a lush background.

    Moreover, I think your analogy of symplectic geometry would not apply to spirituality. I will say why:

    1) Identifiable process of learning - SG or any similar subject has structured steps for learning (the subject).
    2) Identifiable parameters (of subject) - These may pertain to the hypothesis or basis of exploration into the subject, which are again, based on previously proven theories.
    3) Continuous improvement - The knowledge (on and about the subject) undergoes transformation with any new theories that are valid and proven. Future research may also prove that the subject itself may be invalid.

    For "Isvara" none of these apply unless we mean something else by that term.

    If you have something concrete to disprove the above please do so. Otherwise, I am afraid, they would remain as mere conjectures. :-)
    Sri auh

    Spirituality is a vague word and can mean anything to anyone. I try to avoid its use since I do not know what it can mean to others.

    It seems to me your response is based on your notions/belief of what this spirituality is all about.

    Therefore I never attempt to reason against a belief.

    Let me make one feeble attempt :-)

    Item 1 above) My response is "How would you know?" The material I am talking about is highly structured. If it is about faith I will tell you about heaven, hell and God in two minutes and then spend rest of the time scaring the living daylights out of you why you are destined to go to hell or bad things will happen if you do not follow the edicts of a religion. That is what religion is all about. That is not what I am talking about. Most of the world including India is in this state.

    When it comes to learning, it is far more difficult task since there is understanding involved. I have been at this for more than two decades. I have taken 'leave of absence without pay' from work to attend classes both in India and in USA when needed. I have attended classes where a single verse was taught over 20 hours of class time with no repetition whatsoever. And we were at the edge of our chairs all the time.

    There was never a notion we were asked to believe unless the topic area only has supporting evidence like the Karma model (which by the way is least understood in this Google driven internet age).

    (I do not share details of where I learn, how I process etc. I take responsibilities for any statement I make here)

    Item 2 ) Yes they exist. But not for any grade! That is the end of the answer. Now let me make some observations.

    India and most religions (including institutions like various mutts) specialize in rituals and in propagating superstitions. We have people that pick up words here and there and talk nonsense. Often they go to various forums, pick up some idea or big-word and cross pollinate in other places to appear smart :-). There are lots of books written by many people in west that have corrupted the content and there are many Indians who pick up those books and think that it is teaching gospel.

    Item 3) Science tries to understand nature's mystery by understanding the laws that operate. If a law does not hold, another law is discovered that describes the order. Our knowledge evolves in science as we understand the laws more and more. But the law itself does not change (the ones we want to understand as human beings)

    The same notions apply to this area also. The only difference is that what we study is the 'knowledge by which every other knowledge is known'


    When I shared the story of Sri Vivekananada's communication with great scientist of last century Tesla, I thought you may have understood that I am not talking about some belief based mumbo-jumbo!

    Let me conclude with these statements.

    In the last century the greatest discovery for human being included three main topics.

    1. The theory of Quantum Mechanics - it may still be incomplete

    2. The equivalence of mass and energy as shown by Einstein and later demonstrated by design of atomic bomb.

    3. The nature of space and time as expounded by Einstein in his special and general theories of relativity,.

    I mentioned that with strong reasons drawing from Upanishad Sri Vivekananda enabled discussion of item 2 above, 25 years before Einstein published his work (and citing Tesla's work)

    I mentioned that Sri Sankara's description of nature of space-time (he only used the terms together) matches very rigorously with what is discovered to be true.

    At this point you have a choice to hold onto your beliefs that this is all about beliefs. Or spend your time learning and finding out for yourself. Or get curious at least.

    I think, from my past discussions, you will hold onto your beliefs because that is the most natural thing to do :-) Therefore let these remain as mere conjectures!

    Thanks for engaging in a professional manner !

    Regards
  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by sangom View Post
    I feel like contributing "my two cents" to this discussion, though I also apprehend that my views may not be acceptable to many, such as Shri ths ji, Shri Vaagmi ji, etc.

    The main difficulty seems to me to be that profound truths are present in our scriptures, along with many half-truths, made-up stories, fantasies, etc. Kindly see my post here.

    Sree Rudram which forms part of the Krishna Yajurveda, depicts the Supreme Reality (you may call IT by whatever name or form you want.) in its aspect as the Terminator of the worldly sojourn of every living being. This is what our elders used to call as மரண பயம் (maraṇa bhayam). It is to ward off such maraṇa bhayam at the time of impending death of a person that religion prescribes very many palliative things, some of which at least each one of us is familiar with. The Rudra Anuvaakam depicts the Supreme Reality in the form of this fearful aspect of worldly life and calls the same as Rudra, one of the Rigvedic Devatas. Incidentally, Sree Rudram also calls this Vedic Rudra as Siva (नमः शिवाय च शिवतराय च) and thus helps establish a rapport between the Vedic belief system and the Saiva cult which was also having a very large following, perhaps, in those times.

    As to portions of Rudram like नमो॒ वञ्च॑ते परि॒वञ्च॑ते स्तायू॒नां पत॑ये॒ नमो॒, नमो॑ निचे॒रवे॑ परिच॒रायार॑ण्यानां॒ पत॑ये॒ नमो॒, etc, and more of similar mantras, these are all to emphasize to the chanter that nobody whatsoever is "out of" the ambit of Rudra, the fearsome facet of the Supreme Truth which is also an integral part of worldly existence for all ordinary beings including humans.

    The reference to more than one Rudra, (नमो रुद्रेभ्यो येपृथिव्याम् येĒन्तरिक्षे येदिवि येषा मन्नम् वातो वर्षमिषवस्-तेभ्यो दश-प्राचीर् दश-दक्षिणा दश-प्रतीचीर् दशोदीचीर् दशोर्ध्वास् तेभ्यो नमस्ते नो मृडयन्तु तेयम् द्विष्मो यश्च नो द्वेष्टितम् वो जम्भे दधामि ॥) it should be clear that the all-pervading aspect of the Supreme God is what is hinted at and the prayer at the end is to be kindly disposed towards the chanter.
    Sri Sangom -

    Thanks for sharing your comments. There is no need to have any apprehension in any professional engagement (refer to post #29) and sharing your views :-)



    I read your other post and when I find a moment this weekend I will respond in that thread.

    Upanishads and certain verses that are in alignment with Upanishads (like Sri Rudram) teaches one to know why there is no reason to fear anything. This will not align with your explanation.

    Siva means auspiciousness. The linkage to Saivism may be coincidental at best.

    I have the following criteria in evaluating an interpretation. I will only list a few criteria here.

    1. The meaning and teaching conveyed must be useful to me based on a vision of life that is taught
    2. The entire verse or set of verses have to be self consistent.
    3. It has to be self consistent with messages taught elsewhere in Upanishads etc.

    If it meets the above tests and few others then I will accept them. If they do not I tend to reject them
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  4. #33
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    Excerpts from post #2:

    While I look forward to your future posts, I find some points contradictory. I find it rather high sounding when you say that your post is not directed at those *most Hindus* who want *something from the the magician God*.

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    Also you have said that you have undergone all night chanting of Rudram and chamakam and meditation for prolonged period. If you still care to remember the meanings of **chamakam** it is merely a wishful list of things the sadhaka asks from Sri Rudra. If I am not wrong it lists about 288 such things from Iswara, some for his own good, some for the good of his tribesmen and country. It is rather funny that the Rsis who saw the rks and yajus mantras and who passed it on for a few thousands of years were not so eclectic.

    Even the tiniest dvAdaSa nAma and the lengthy saharasnAmAs have a detailed "phala Sruthi" at the end which details the phalan that would accrue to the reciter. The phala sruthis are also composed by the same persons who composed the stotras or slokams or sahasranAmams and there is no charge of interpolation.

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    In my opening post I mentioned that this thread/post is not directed towards anyone who has expectations from a 'magician' god.
    There were two 'possibly rhetorical' questions/statements about Phala Sruthi and significance of reciting Chamakam in the context of my statement in the opening post since both of these are examples of desiring some form of wealth from god expressed in the verses themselves.

    The topic may not be of interest to many but before I sign off from the thread I will share my understanding here.

    Topic of Phala Sruthi
    =============

    The greatness of Hindu thinking is that it tends to be all inclusive of people wherever they are in terms of their quest to grow. Hence there are four legitimate human pursuits (Purushartha ) stated in our scriptures.

    In order for an individual to realize their true nature they need to identify the purpose of why they have taken birth. In order to pursue their objectives our Rshis defined and legitimized several pursuits of human life namely "Purusharthas". They are:

    1. Kama - fulfill our desire (subject to Dharma) without guilt now
    2. Artha - ensure there is security and wealth to fulfill our desires today, tomorrow, rest of our lives and those of our offsprings for many generation to come. Again this has to be within the constraints of pursuits of Dharma
    3. Dharma - this has many meanings but one that is relevant here is the pursuit of desires and security in after life by accruing what is called Punya.

    Now the above three addresses the pursuits of today, tomorrow and even after life.

    The Vedas (first three part) prescribes actions to successfully execute the above pursuits.

    There is an elusive fourth pursuit called Moksha that is least understood and actually negates (does not discard) the above three pursuits.

    With this backdrop one can understand the need and inclusion of Phala Sruthi which sort of organizes verses in terms of what can be chanted for a specific pursuit. A description of Phala Sruthi does not imply the described fruits will fructify as noted in the verse in a given lifetime.



    People use the shaastra for different purposes, so if one is chanting Vishnu SahasranAma in order to gain some punya for fulfilling a completely material desire (e.g. svarga-loka), the Sruti would want to give assurance that this chanting will in fact bring the desired benefit. If I remember right, Sri Sankara has pointed out that where there are phala-shruti verses that they are intended to generate enthusiasm in the saadhaka, so that he/she is encouraged to undertake the saadhana.

    Even though a saadhaka may desire personal growth, he/she probably still has some desires for material benefits as well (e.g. material wealth sufficient to allow him/her to have free time to study!). And of course, knowing that we will have some such desires, Sruti uses that as a means of 'promoting' a discipline, hopefully ending in antah-karana-shuddhi (purification of our mind).

    Itís the 'jIhva-guda-nyaya', the analogy of the parent offering the child a lump of sugar in order to make him take the bitter medicine.

    For those that do not care for any Phalams of this kind a better mind set is to say 'Kayena Vaacha ...'

    Recitation of Chamakam
    ===============

    Rudram and Chamakam significance for a true saadhaka can be best understood by borrowing a Christian description.

    It is called "Let Go, Let God"

    Rudram chanting is about "let go" - letting our sense of me/ego by offering our Namaskaram. Namaha arises from Na mama meaning 'not mine' as explicitly chanted during a ritual such as Shraddham when one pours ghee into the havan. Only when one lets go the sense of individuality is it possible to realize Isvara.

    Chamakam chanting is about 'Let God'

    When one is not interpreting various description of wealth etc through the glass of 'ego' then all that is desired is Isvara.

    Isvara also called Bhagavan stands for one who has overlordship over all Bhaga.

    भगः अस्य अस्ति इति भगवान्


    Power, wealth, dispassion, fame and knowledge are identified as bhaga.

    So when one seeks any of these in reciting Chamakam, it is about seeking Isvara ("let God in") since ego oriented mind-body identification is given up while chanting Rudram. At least that is the intent.
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  6. #34
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    Though I opened more questions than provided responses, I think I will stop with this post in this thread.
    In my opening post I had many more items planned to share but I may do that in the future.

    When one has genuine understanding of Isvara, the rituals take on a different meaning and significance for a true saadhaka.
    All the poetic descriptions of Isvara's image add to enhance our sense of 'Bhakthi' towards Isvara in an unconditional manner without being corrupted by delusional ideas.

    Lord Nataraja is portrayed as one who is doing a cosmic dance.

    In this universe every subatomic particle exhibits a wave like property dancing to a tune and in an ever changing manner.
    At cosmic level galaxies are moving in a rhythm too. Our own earth is circling the sun with a periodicity. One can metaphorically imagine all these are dances of Isvara portrayed as Nataraja's dance.

    One beat of the Damru in this vision can be considered equal to one cycle of universe of about 20+ billion years.
    The rapid beat portrays that this is ever continuing dance which has no beginning or ending.

    Now if anyone wants to mentally experience this cosmic dance I will suggest the following.

    There is a need to make a commitment to sit in place of quietude for a period of time with the intent to meditate on this cosmic form of Isvara.

    I was looking online of the rendering of the song - 'Ananda Nadamaduvar' by Ranjani and Gayathri , who in one of the concert I have, rendered with the energy required to convey the idea of this cosmic dance. It is not available online.

    However I did find this one online instead. The raaga Purvikalyani is perfectly set for this composition in my view.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KizihFsDe6w


    If you think of each beat of the Mridangam to correspond to a cycle of universe (currently 13.5 billion years with 10 more left) and envision the cosmic dance as wave at any and all levels of change you can get a glimpse of a sense of Isvara.

    Yes, the metaphor is a form of planned delusion but since one understands the meaning of this form of Isvara as cosmic dancer of change, the delusion ceases to be one.

    Om Namo Bhagavate Rudraya!
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  8. #35
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    Closed as per request.
    Contact - Guidelines

    Since i do not read all the posts, if you need to bring something to my attention report the post or send me a message with the link.
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