Shri Ganesh Jayanti : A Spiritual celebration


Shri Ganapati
 Table of contents 
  1. Introduction
  2. Basic spiritual celebration
  3. Relative importance of the types of celebration methods
  4. Best celebration of Shri Ganesh Jayanti

1. Introduction 

Shri Ganesh Jayanti, the day on which the Ganesh frequencies reached earth for the first time, i.e. the day on which Shri Ganesh was born, is the fourth day (chaturthi) of the bright fortnight of the Hindu lunar month of Maagh. On this auspicious occasion, what can we do to derive maximum spiritual benefit from Shri Ganesh’s heightened presence on earth? This article is based on the divine knowledge received by a seeker (saadhikaa) doing spiritual practice under the guidance of His Holiness Dr. Athavale. It provides an idea of the types of spiritual practices (saadhanaa) that can be performed on this day and their relative importance. 

2. Basic spiritual celebration

On the auspicious occasion of Shri Ganesh Jayanti, the devotee or seeker (saadhak) should do 3 to 9 turns of a mala (108 stringed beads) while chanting Sree Ganesh’s Name (‘Om Gan Ganapataye namaha’)
In addition to this, a devotee should worship Shri Ganesh's idol or picture, ritualistically. From this one can derive the benefit of Sree Ganesh’s divine energy and divine consciousness that come to earth in higher amounts this day. Reciting Shri Ganesh Atharvashirsha (stotra, holy verses in praise of Shri Ganesh) adds to these benefits.

3. Relative importance of the types of celebration methods

No.
Spiritual benefit 
Chanting (continual repeating /remembrance) of Shri Ganesh’s Name
Ritualistic worship and singing of hymns with lit lamp waving (aarati)
Reciting Atharvashirsha
1 Getting benefit from Sree Ganesh Principle (%) 20 10 to 15 7 to 10
2 Getting divine consciousness or chaitanya (%) 50 30 20
3 Getting divine energy (%) 40 20 10
4 Relative importance (%) Spiritual emotion (bhaav) 70 100 30
Pronunciation 30 0 70
5 Impact on the devotee Awakening of the Sushumna (central) spiritual energy channel*, awakening of spiritual emotion, and chanting occurring at a higher level of speech (vaani) Awakening of spiritual emotion, can easily absorb divine consciousness and divine energy and awakening of the Sushumna (central) and the Surya (right side) spiritual energy channels* Gettting divine consciousness and divine energy,  removal of subtle black covering and awakening of the Surya (right side) spiritual energy channel*
6 Impact on different bodies of the embodied soul** Physical body 10 2 All bodies get purified up to 15%. Vital energy body and mental body get purified up to 30%.
Mental body 30 3
Causal (intellect) body 20 1
Supra-causal (ego) body 10 2
  All bodies get purified, resulting in overall increase in spiritual purity (saattvikta) Increase in overall spiritual purity (saattvikta) of the bodies and increase in divine consciousness absorbing capacity of the bodies
 * The Kundalini is the inherent spiritual energy system in the body. It consists of 7 main centres or chakras, 3 main channels - the Sun (Surya or Right channel or Pingalaa naadi), Moon (Chandra or Left channel or Idaa naadi) and Central (Sushumnaa naadi) channels and innumerable ducts and ductules.  
** An average human being, also known as the embodied soul or Jiva

4. Best celebration of Shri Ganesh Jayanti

The devotee derives 100% benefit from the heightened Sree Ganesh Principle on earth on Sree Ganesh Jayanti day, by performing all of the above spiritual practices.
Thursday, 21 February 2013
Posted by Shoumik Das

Mahakavi Kalidas : Greatest Scholar and Poet in Sanskrit


Mahakavi Kalidas 
Mahakavi Kalidas

Content


Introduction

One of the greatest poets and dramatists in Sanskrit. His chronicle of the kings of the Raghu clan ('Raghuvamsha'), the great play 'Shakuntala' and other works depict, through many great characters, the highest ideals of life as seen by the ancient people of Bharat.

Kalidas

There are hundreds of languages in the world. However, great and classical literature which people in all countries need to read is found only in a few languages. One such great language is Sanskrit. It is one of the oldest languages. It is the mother of several Indianlanguages such as Hindi, Bengali and Marathi in the North. Kannada, Telugu and other languages in the South have also been nourished by it.

It needs the genius of poets who create literary epics and great thinkers for a language to achieve world-renown. Sanskrit is eminently lucky in this respect. Sages' celebration of the wonders of nature, the sky, the stars, mountains and rivers, the sun, the moon, the clouds, fire ('Agni') and their devout offering of prayers to the Universal Power are all found in the Vedic classics which/are in Sanskrit. Puranas and historical epics like the Ramayana and the Mahabharat vividly describe the battle between the good and the evil. They also portray the virtues like devotion to truth, a sense of sacrifice, heroism, cultured living, etc. In Sanskrit there are also beautiful stories of birds and animals like Panchatantra; stories extolling good and basic qualities of wisdom and intelligence. Sanskrit can also justly boast of a rich treasure house of plays, poems and many scientific and philosophical treatises.

A poet who has made a distinct and glorious contribution to this sumptuous Sanskrit literature is Kalidas. He has pictured in his works the beauty in life and pondered upon how we can give pleasure to others by generous and graceful behavior. His portrayals are vivid and heart- warming; his word power is unique. In a few words he is capable of bringing out the entire meaning intended. His writings touchingly show up a noble, meaningful mode of life for the people to pursue. His works are an intellectual treat to thinkers and common readers alike.

A Great Scholar and Poet

Who is this Kalidas ? When did he live and where in India was he residing? Much discussion has taken place for a long time now about his life and times. Not many queries on this score have elicited definite answers. Several legends have sprouted around him.

According to one such popular legend, Kalidas wasn't always so wise and learned. In fact, there was a time he was considered to be one of the stupidest people in the kingdom!

One sunny day, Kalidas was sitting on a branch of a tree, trying to saw it off. But the dimwitted man was sitting on the wrong end of the branch, so when he finally sawed through the branch, down he tumbled! This act of sheer stupidity was observed by some shrewd pundits minister passing by.

Now these pundits wanted to play a trick on the arrogant princess, to teach her a lesson. She was determined to marry someone who would defeat her in a debate about the scriptures. The princess had heaped considerable abuse on them over a period of time, and they were determined to extract their revenge. So, when they chanced upon Kalidas, they decided to present him to the queen as a suitable match for her.

In order to conceal his stupidity, the pundits asked Kalidas to pretend that he was a great sage, who was observing a vow of silence. Kalidas readily agreed, and they presented him to the queen, saying that Kalidas would only communicate by way of gestures. When the queen asked Kalidas a few questions to test his intelligence, Kalidas gesticulated wildly and the astute pundits 'interpreted' these gestures as extremely witty answers and retorts. The princess was suitably impressed, and the couple was married without much delay.

Kalidas's stupidity could be concealed for only so long, and the night of the wedding Kalidas blurted out something inane. The princess realized that she had married a prize fool. Furious, she threw him out of her palace, and her life.

The dejected Kalidas wandered around, till he came to the bank of the river. He contemplated taking his life when he suddenly saw some women washing clothes on the edge of the river bank. He observed that the stones which the women were pounding with clothes, were smooth and rounded, while the other stones were rough and ragged. This observation hit him like a thunderbolt, and it dawned upon him that if stones could be worn through and change their shape by being pounded upon by clothes, then why couldn't his thick brains change, by being pounded upon by knowledge!

Kalidas thus grew determined to become the wisest and most learned man in the country, and to achieve this end he started indulging in intellectual pastimes, reading, meditating and praying to his goddess Kali to grant him divine knowledge. His wish was fulfilled.

This is one of the most popular legends about Kalidas. There are several other stories but they lack authenticity.

It appears Kalidas was at the court of emperor Vikramaditya. The place and time of this king are also not definite. But it can be said with some certainty that Kalidas lived before the 6th century A.D., i.e., about 1400 years ago. But when exactly he lived before the 6th century is not firmly established. Though a deep affection for the city of Ujjain is discernible in his works, it cannot be said with certainty that he lived there. But we can assume that, wherever he may have been born, he had lived at Ujjain.

Kalidas, however, had good knowledge of the whole of Bharat. In his poem 'Meghaduta', his descriptions of mountains and rivers and cities and villages stretching from Ramagiri in Central India up to Alakanagari in the Himalayas are very beautiful. In another epic poem 'Raghuvamsha', Kalidas, while portraying the conquests of emperor Raghu, describes the places and peoples, their modes of living, food-habits and trades and professions, rivers and mountains in almost the whole country -- Assam, Bengal and Utkal in the East; Pandya and Kerala in the South and Sind, Gandhara and other places in the North-west.

Reading these pen-pictures, one cannot help but conclude that the poet must have had a personal knowledge of these areas. In short, he must have traveled widely across the length and breadth of the land, seen those places, talked to the people and studied their modes of living.

Kalidas possessed that distinct intellect which makes one a great poet. He was a scholar and his works display his poetic genius as well as scholarship. Also they are marked by a belief of what is good in life and people's noble goals of life. He could describe the rich and wealthy life of a royal palace and the serene, simple and peaceful life at a hermitage with equal understanding. He could, likewise, describe the joys of the marital life of a man and his spouse as well as their pangs of separation. He creates scenes of a serious and thoughtful nature as also hilarious scenes of light comedy. In his works is found an excellent combination of art-consciousness, unmatched wordpower and an unparalleled capacity for vivid portrayals.

The Great works by Kalidas

Kalidas wrote seven works. 'Kumarasambhava' and 'Raghuvamsha' are his two epic poems. 'Malavikagnimitra', 'Vikramorvashiya' and 'Abhijnana Shakuntala' are his celebrated plays. 'Meghaduta' and 'Ritusamhara' are also poetical works of great distinction.

Kumarasambhava

One of Kalidas's greatest works is 'Kumarasambhava'. Critics maintain that Kalidas wrote only the first eight chapters of the epic poem. The work describes the marriage of Lord Shiva and his consort Parvati. It begins with a fine description of that giant among mountains, the Himalaya.

Kalidas's poem gives us a vivid picture of what a good, meaningful life a man could and should lead as propounded by our learned ancestors.

Raghuvamsha

Kalidas's second epic is 'Raghuvamsha'. There are nineteen chapters ('sargas') in this poem. The epic describes the history of the kings Dileepa, Raghu, Aja, Dasharatha, Sri Rama, Lava and Kusha. It also deals briefly with the twenty kings from Nala up to Agnivarna.In thebeginning, the poet extols the fine qualities of the kings of Raghu dynasty.

'Raghuvamsha' depicts our ancient, historical culture and tradition. Our ancestors had discussed in detail about such matters as to who could be a good ruler, who is a man of 'tapas' (penance), how one should lead a good, purposeful life and the like. The poet has portrayed diverse characters like Vashishta, Dileepa, Raghu, Aja and others. Agnivarna is an example of a king who could be termed as 'depraved'.

Malavikagnimitra

'Malavikagnimitra' is Kalidas's first play. The author shows his humility and is   uncertain whether people would accepts play. He pleads 'Puranamityeva Na sadhu   sarvam,Na chapikavyamnavamityavadyam' (Everything old is not good, nor is every thing knew badly). There may be some thing, which may not be of much use in the  old, and the new may also be good. The theme of the play is the love-story of Agnimitra and Malavika.

Vikramor-vashiya

Kalidas's second play 'Vikramor -vashiya' is about the loves and tribulations of king Pururava and the heavenly damsel 'Urvashi'.

Abhijnana Shakuntala

'Abhijnana Shakuntala' is Kalidas's greatest creation. This literary masterpiece has been translated into several languages around the world. The story of Shakuntala appears in the 'Adiparva' chapter of the epic Mahabharat.

Meghaduta

'Meghaduta' is a beautiful love-lyric. A 'Yaksha', who is forced to be separated from his mistress for a year, sends her a message. The lady is residing at Alakanagari. 'Go and tell her that I told so', instructs the Yaksha to the cloud who becomes his messenger. The very fact that a cloud ('Megha') is chosen to be a messenger of love is something unique. The poet fascinatingly describes the travels of the cloud from Ramagiri to Alakanagari. The rivers, hills and mountains, cities and towns, vast fields, farmers' daughters as well as girls in the cities, the birds and the bees -- are all described by the poet vividly. It is a total picture of a beautiful world. His descriptions of Alakanagari, the Yaksha's house and the garden around, theYaksha's wife playing the Veena and her grace and beauty are captivating.

Ritusamhara

'Ritusamhara' is a somewhat small-scale poetical creation depicting the six seasons. However, it is equally appealing. The poet here sees beauty in everything. Each different facet of nature he sees in each of the seasons fascinates him; it is a romantic sight.

Summary of the life and work of Kalidas

In sum, it gives us great aesthetic pleasure to read Kalidas's works. His descriptions enthrall us. With him we are in the company-cultured a highly civilized, cultured personality. It is like a flower which, in bloom, spreads its fragrance all around. And a man's mature, ripened mind and intellect brings pleasure to those around him. In Kalidas's creations, we enter the world of people pure in mind and body and who are graceful. We learn here the manner in which man's nature can reach high, moral levels. It pleases us deeply to come into contact with characters like Parvati, Dileepa, Raghu, Aja, Shakuntala, Dushyanta and Kanva. It is for this wonderful experience that we as well as people in other countries read Kalidas.

Source : 1) Free India
                2) India Parenting
Posted by Shoumik Das

Great Indian Hindu Sages who revolutionised the field of Science


Our illustrious past in the field of Science before the invasions of Islamic & Portuguese hordes is worth noting. This should give inspiration to our young generation who will then realise what great scientists were produced in the golden era of India.

Aryabhatt (476 BCE) - Master Astronomer and Mathematician

Aryabhatt

Born in 476 CE in Kusumpur ( Bihar ), Aryabhatt's intellectual brilliance remapped the boundaries of mathematics and astronomy. In 499 CE, at the age of 23, he wrote a text on astronomy and an unparallel treatise on mathematics called "Aryabhatiyam." He formulated the process of calculating the motion of planets and the time of eclipses. Aryabhatt was the first to proclaim that the earth is round, it rotates on its axis, orbits the sun and is suspended in space - 1000 years before Copernicus published his heliocentric theory. He is also acknowledged for calculating p (Pi) to four decimal places: 3.1416 and the sine table in trigonometry. Centuries later, in 825 CE, the Arab mathematician, Mohammed Ibna Musa credited the value of Pi to the Indians, "This value has been given by the Hindus." And above all, his most spectacular contribution was the concept of zero without which modern computer technology would have been non-existent. Aryabhatt was a colossus in the field of mathematics.

Bhaskaracharya || (1114-1183 BCE) - Genius in Algebra

Bhaskaracharya ||

Born in the obscure village of Vijjadit (Jalgaon) in Maharastra, Bhaskaracharya' s work in Algebra, Arithmetic and Geometry catapulted him to fame and immortality. His renowned mathematical works called "Lilavati" and "Bijaganita" are considered to be unparalled and a memorial to his profound intelligence. Its translation in several languages of the world bear testimony to its eminence. In his treatise " Siddhant Shiromani " he writes on planetary positions, eclipses, cosmography, mathematical techniques and astronomical equipment. In the " Surya Siddhant " he makes a note on the force of gravity: "Objects fall on earth due to a force of attraction by the earth. Therefore, the earth, planets, constellations, moon, and sun are held in orbit due to this attraction." Bhaskaracharya was the first to discover gravity, 500 years before Sir Isaac Newton . He was the champion among mathematicians of ancient and medieval India . His works fired the imagination of Persian and European scholars, who through research on his works earned fame and popularity.

Acharya Kanad (600 BCE) - Founder of Atomic Theory

Acharya Kanad

As the founder of " Vaisheshik Darshan "- one of six principal philosophies of India - Acharya Kanad was a genius in philosophy. He is believed to have been born in Prabhas Kshetra near Dwarika in Gujarat . He was the pioneer expounder of realism, law of causation and the atomic theory. He has classified all the objects of creation into nine elements, namely: earth, water, light, wind, ether, time, space, mind and soul. He says, "Every object of creation is made of atoms which in turn connect with each other to form molecules." His statement ushered in the Atomic Theory for the first time ever in the world, nearly 2500 years before John Dalton . Kanad has also described the dimension and motion of atoms and their chemical reactions with each other. The eminent historian, T.N. Colebrook , has said, "Compared to the scientists of Europe , Kanad and other Indian scientists were the global masters of this field."

Nagarjuna (100 BCE) - Wizard of Chemical Science

Nagarjuna

He was an extraordinary wizard of science born in the nondescript village of Baluka in Madhya Pradesh . His dedicated research for twelve years produced maiden discoveries and inventions in the faculties of chemistry and metallurgy. Textual masterpieces like " Ras Ratnakar ," "Rashrudaya" and "Rasendramangal" are his renowned contributions to the science of chemistry. Where the medieval alchemists of England failed, Nagarjuna had discovered the alchemy of transmuting base metals into gold. As the author of medical books like "Arogyamanjari" and "Yogasar," he also made significant contributions to the field of curative medicine. Because of his profound scholarliness and versatile knowledge, he was appointed as Chancellor of the famous University of Nalanda . Nagarjuna's milestone discoveries impress and astonish the scientists of today.

Acharya Charak (600 BCE) - Father of Medicine

Acharya Charak has been crowned as the Father of Medicine. His renowned work, the " Charak Samhita ", is considered as an encyclopedia of Ayurveda. His principles, diagoneses, and cures retain their potency and truth even after a couple of millennia. When the science of anatomy was confused with different theories in Europe , Acharya Charak revealed through his innate genius and enquiries the facts on human anatomy, embryology, pharmacology, blood circulation and diseases like diabetes, tuberculosis, heart disease, etc. In the " Charak Samhita " he has described the medicinal qualities and functions of 100,000 herbal plants. He has emphasized the influence of diet and activity on mind and body. He has proved the correlation of spirituality and physical health contributed greatly to diagnostic and curative sciences. He has also prescribed and ethical charter for medical practitioners two centuries prior to the Hippocratic oath. Through his genius and intuition, Acharya Charak made landmark contributions to Ayurvedal. He forever remains etched in the annals of history as one of the greatest and noblest of rishi-scientists.

Acharya Sushrut (600 BCE) - Father of Plastic Surgery

Acharya Sushrut

A genius who has been glowingly recognized in the annals of medical science. Born to sage Vishwamitra, Acharya Sudhrut details the first ever surgery procedures in " Sushrut Samhita ," a unique encyclopedia of surgery. He is venerated as the father of plastic surgery and the science of anesthesia. When surgery was in its infancy in Europe , Sushrut was performing Rhinoplasty (restoration of a damaged nose) and other challenging operations. In the " Sushrut Samhita ," he prescribes treatment for twelve types of fractures and six types of dislocations. His details on human embryology are simply amazing. Sushrut used 125 types of surgical instruments including scalpels, lancets, needles, Cathers and rectal speculums; mostly designed from the jaws of animals and birds. He has also described a number of stitching methods; the use of horse's hair as thread and fibers of bark. In the " Sushrut Samhita ," and fibers of bark. In the " Sushrut Samhita ," he details 300 types of operations. The ancient Indians were the pioneers in amputation, caesarian and cranial surgeries. Acharya Sushrut was a giant in the arena of medical science.

Varahmihir (499-587 BCE) - Eminent Astrologer and Astronomera

Varahmihir

renowned astrologer and astronomer who was honored with a special decoration and status as one of the nine gems in the court of King Vikramaditya in Avanti ( Ujjain ). Varahamihir' s book "panchsiddhant" holds a prominent place in the realm of astronomy. He notes that the moon and planets are lustrous not because of their own light but due to sunlight. In the " Bruhad Samhita " and " Bruhad Jatak ," he has revealed his discoveries in the domains of geography, constellation, science, botany and animal science. In his treatise on botanical science, Varamihir presents cures for various diseases afflicting plants and trees. The rishi-scientist survives through his unique contributions to the science of astrology and astronomy.

Acharya Patanjali (200 BCE) - Father of Yoga

Acharya Patanjali

The Science of Yoga is one of several unique contributions of India to the world. It seeks to discover and realize the ultimate Reality through yogic practices. Acharya Patanjali , the founder, hailed from the district of Gonda (Ganara) in Uttar Pradesh . He prescribed the control of prana (life breath) as the means to control the body, mind and soul. This subsequently rewards one with good health and inner happiness. Acharya Patanjali 's 84 yogic postures effectively enhance the efficiency of the respiratory, circulatory, nervous, digestive and endocrine systems and many other organs of the body. Yoga has eight limbs where Acharya Patanjali shows the attainment of the ultimate bliss of God in samadhi through the disciplines of: yam, niyam, asan, pranayam, pratyahar, dhyan and dharna. The Science of Yoga has gained popularity because of its scientific approach and benefits. Yoga also holds the honored place as one of six philosophies in the Indian philosophical system. Acharya Patanjali will forever be remembered and revered as a pioneer in the science of self-discipline, happiness and self-realization.

Acharya Bharadwaj (800 BCE) - Pioneer of Aviation Technology

Acharya Bharadwaj

Acharya Bharadwaj had a hermitage in the holy city of Prayag and was an ordent apostle of Ayurveda and mechanical sciences. He authored the " Yantra Sarvasva " which includes astonishing and outstanding discoveries in aviation science, space science and flying machines. He has described three categories of flying machines: 1.) One that flies on earth from one place to another. 2.) One that travels from one planet to another. 3.) And One that travels from one universe to another. His designs and descriptions have impressed and amazed aviation engineers of today. His brilliance in aviation technology is further reflected through techniques described by him:
1.) Profound Secret: The technique to make a flying machine invisible through the application of sunlight and wind force.
2.) Living Secret: The technique to make an invisible space machine visible through the application of electrical force.
3.) Secret of Eavesdropping: The technique to listen to a conversation in another plane.
4.) Visual Secrets: The technique to see what's happening inside another plane.
Through his innovative and brilliant discoveries, Acharya Bharadwaj has been recognized as the pioneer of aviation technology.

Acharya Kapil (3000 BCE) - Father of Cosmology

Acharya Kapil

Celebrated as the founder of Sankhya philosophy, Acharya Kapil is believed to have been born in 3000 BCE to the illustrious sage Kardam and Devhuti. He gifted the world with the Sankhya School of Thought. His pioneering work threw light on the nature and principles of the ultimate Soul (Purusha), primal matter (Prakruti) and creation. His concept of transformation of energy and profound commentaries on atma, non-atma and the subtle elements of the cosmos places him in an elite class of master achievers - incomparable to the discoveries of other cosmologists. On his assertion that Prakruti, with the inspiration of Purusha, is the mother of cosmic creation and all energies, he contributed a new chapter in the science of cosmology. Because of his extrasensory observations and revelations on the secrets of creation, he is recognized and saluted as the Father of Cosmology. 
Wednesday, 20 February 2013
Posted by Shoumik Das

Why Mahabharat is glorified as fifth Veda?



Contents


1. Holy texts of the Smrutis

Besides the texts of the Smrutis the Mahabharat and Ramayan too are considered as the Smrutis. In theMahabharat itself, it is referred to as the scripture on Righteousness (Dharmashastra) [Adiparva 2.283]. The commentaries (nibandha) on the scriptures of Righteousness (Dharmashastra) of course are innumerable.
Kamalakarbhatt wrote the holy text Nirnaysindhu in 1612 A.D. He has made a mention of a hundred authors of the Smrutis and three hundred essayists in His holy text. Thereafter towards the end of the 18th century A.D. the text Dharmasindhu was written. This essay was written by Kashinath Upadhyay or Baba Padhye on the scriptures of Righteousness (Dharma). In this way essayists emerged in all parts of India and received varying amounts of recognition in their respective regions.’ (1)
Information on some important texts is given below.

2. The Manusmruti

‘The Manusmruti available today has 12 adhyays (chapters) and 2694 verses (shlokas). In this it is stated that Manu has acquired the scriptures on Righteousness created by Lord Brahma and in turn He teaches it to the sages.
The topics in the Manusmruti can be described in brief as below.
  • The creation of the universe, the measurement of time right from a nimish (the duration required for the opening or closing of the eyelids) to even a day of Lord Brahma, dissolution of the universe (pralay), the deterioration of Righteousness, codes of Righteousness and objectives during different yugs (eras).
  • Definition and sites of origin of Righteousness, limitations of Aryavarta (land of Aryans), necessity of spiritual rites (sanskars) and their types, the rite of thread ceremony (upanayan), the duties and limitations of a celibate (brahmachari).
  • Marriage, duties of both spouses, the stage of the householder, the five great fire sacrifices (panchamahayadnya), the rite of shraddha for ancestors, the duties of a householder, the duties of a wife and a widow, the duties of the husband and wife as prescribed in the scriptures, the twelve kinds of sons, division of property, inheritance, different kinds of sins and the acts of atonement (prayashchitta) to be performed to nullify them, the seven types of servants (das).
  • Periods of impurity, permissible and forbidden foods, purity of substances
  • Duties of a retired householder (vanaprastha) and a renunciant (sannyasi)
  • The code of Righteousness of rulers (rajadharma), the sciences (vidya) to be learnt by a king, the undesirable qualities of a king, the cabinet of ministers, officers, the royal assembly, the six attributes in making peace or war (sandhivigraha)
  • Meting out justice, points for debate, judges, different types of crimes and the punishment for them, excise, prisons
  • Privileges and duties of all the four classes, inter-caste communities, the right ways to procure wealth and to earn a livelihood
  • Making offerings, acts of atonement (prayashchitta), visible effects of sins committed in previous births, a variety of acts of atonement, mantras to nullify sins.
  • Discussion on actions, how ultimate benefaction can be obtained, that Self-realisation is the ultimate means of acquiring happiness, worldly and spiritual actions, knowers of the meaning of the Shrutis(shishta) and assemblies, results of studying anthropology.’(2)

3. The Yadnyavalkyasmruti

Yadnyavalkya has discussed most of the topics from the Manusmruti. He has also written the Shukla Yajurveda.

4. The Ramayan

This is called the foremost poetry (adikavya) and its poet Sage Valmiki the first poet (adikavi) as this is the first poetry in the history of mankind. This text has seven kands (parts) and 645 sargas (sections) of the poem. It is the biography of the Absolute Being, Shrirama born in the Ikshvaku dynasty. More information on Lord Rama is given in ‘Science of Spirituality : Vol. 8 - Vishnu and His Forms (including Maruti and Datta)’.

5. The Yogavasishtha

Its philosophy and special features are described below.
  • A. ‘The philosophy of effort (prayatnavad): “पूर्वजन्‍मकृतं कर्म तद्दैवमिति कथ्‍यते” means one has to face the results of whatever actions one has performed in the previous births in the next births as providence or destiny. The happiness and unhappiness that one experiences is associated with one’s own actions. Actions which cannot be directly connected to the cause of happiness and unhappiness are called invisible (adrushta), providential (praktan) or destined actions while those which can be directly connected to the cause of happiness and unhappiness are called effortful (paurush), willful or diligent actions. Thus the destiny spoken about by believers of fate is basically a consequence of actions. One should perform worldly actions using the power to discriminate between right and wrong but spiritual acts like performing fire sacrifices and the like should be performed using both one’s own intellect as well as assistance from the scriptures. In the context of spiritual knowledge, yoga and devotion however one should seek guidance from the scriptures and the Guru along with one’s own intellectual knowledge.
  • B. The embodied soul: When The Supreme Brahman develops the emotion that “I am a focus of light”, then that focus is called an embodied soul (jiva). That focus assumes a huge form through one’s emotion. In the same way through emotion itself does that focus assume dual forms of the viewer and the scene. Because of the development of the feeling that “I am someone” over a prolonged period within the embodied soul, ego develops within it. This embodied soul then remains bound by various desires created by it out of a resolve (sankalpa). Such embodied souls are infinite.
  • C. The universe: The principle associated with the origin of the universe is called the sattva principle. The manifest universe has been created from that very sattva principle. Before its manifestation, the universe remains in a state of dissolution in the sattva principle. At that time one cannot experience it in different forms and names. This state is said to be unmanifest (avyakta or avyakrut). The period of this unmanifest state is termed as the period of dissolution (pralay) in worldly terms. During this period all visible and invisible creation merges into the unmanifest still maintaining its subtlest desire. If the presence of desires in the subtle (bija) form in the unmanifest state is refuted then no diversification will occur in the universe; hence it seems necessary to acknowledge the presence and complexity of subtle desires during the time of dissolution. All creation undergoes destruction in the order reverse of that of creation during the period of dissolution.
  • D. The Supreme Brahman: In the Yogavasishtha the supreme principle is called Parabrahman.
  • E. The Final Liberation (Moksha): It is of two types, during embodiment (sadeha) and after death (videha).
    असंसक्‍तमतेर्यस्‍य त्‍यागदानेषु कर्मणाम्‌ ।
    नैषणा तत्‍स्‍थितिं विद्घि त्‍वं जीवन्‍मुक्‍ततामिह ।।  - ५.४२.१२
    Meaning: When there are absolutely no desires associated with the sacrifice of actions and in their performance in a detached person, that state is called Liberation during embodiment (jivanmukti). - 5.42.12
    When an embodied soul does not need to take rebirth after death that state is called Liberation after death (videha mukti).
  • F. Absolute (samyak) knowledge: To attain the Final Liberation one has to attain Self-realisation. In fact it is the only means of attaining the Final Liberation. This spiritual knowledge bestowing the Final Liberation is described thus -
    अनाद्यन्‍तावभासात्‍मा परमात्‍मेह विद्यते ।
    इत्‍येको निश्चय: स्‍फार: सम्‍यक्‌ ज्ञानं विदुर्बुधा: ।।  - ५.७९.२
    Meaning: Developing the firm conviction that the eternal, infinite, self illumined Supreme Soul exists in this universe is called acquisition of Absolute knowledge by scholars. - 5.79.2
    Development of the firm conviction that every object that increases or decreases in size are all but the soul and there is no principle other than the soul in the universe is acquiring absolute knowledge. This knowledge is not acquired easily. The worldly attraction experienced in hundreds of births is firm in the mind and to destroy that emotion one needs to acquire knowledge over a long period of time. One experiences Self-realisation if there is a perfect union of the triad of one having potential, study of the scriptures and a Guru.
  • G. Special features: This holy text has not objected to or countered the doctrines of other sects. The author of the Yogavasishtha is generous and expansive. He believes that all sects and their opinions are true. The same Supreme principle is referred to as Shunya (absolute zero) by the shunyavadiphilosophy, Brahman by the Brahman philosophy, Vidnyan (pure knowledge) by the vidnyanvadiphilosophy, Purush (the Absolute Being) by the Sankhya philosophy, God (Ishvar) by the yogi and Shiva by the Shaiva sect.’(3)

6. The Mahabharat

A. History: ‘After culmination of the Bharatiya war and coronation of Dharmaraj (Yudhishthir), Sage Vyas decided to write a book on the history of the Kauravs and Pandavs. He accomplished the task of writing a holy text called Jay, in Badari on the banks of the river Bhagirathi situated close to the Nara-Narayan mountains, within three years. This text includes the entire history of the Kauravs and Pandavs from their birth till the end of the Bharatiya war. According to scholars it contains approximately eight to ten thousand verses (shlokas). Janmejay was a monarch of the fourth generation of the Pandavs. He was keen on hearing the detailed history of his ancestors. So he asked the royal preceptor (rajguru) Sage Vaishampayan who narrated the entire history to him, from the beginning of the Paurav dynasty. The cause of his father, King Parikshit’s death was a snake bite. Janmejay was eager to hear about that incident as well. Hence Vaishampayan added that to the main text. In this way the account of the four or five generations of the Pandavs, from their ancestors to their descendants till King Janmejay, increased the content of the Jay text twofold thus making it triple of what it initially was. Its name was then changed to Bharat. This book compiled by Sage Vaishampayan has approximately thirty thousand verses (shlokas). Sauti compiled Bharat’s third edition. Sages like Shaunak, etc. who had gathered in the Naimish forest, invited Sauti alias Laumharshani, a son born out of an interclass marriage (sutputra) and requested Him to narrate the story of Bharat. The sages asked Him several questions and got Their doubts clarified. When answering them Sauti told Them some fables and parables. Inclusion of all this increased Sauti’s book and made it larger than the Bharat. The number of verses (shlokas) in it rose from thirty thousand to a hundred thousand. He compiled this great text in such a way that there was no inconsistency with the main text. This is the manifestation of His fabulous intellect. The period around 250 B.C. is most certainly that of theMahabharat.
B. Importance
  • Lucid and comprehensive nature: It has been glorified as ‘भारतं पञ्चमो वेद: i.e. the Mahabharat is the fifth Veda’ meaning that from the historical point of view the greatness of the Mahabharat is second only to the Vedas. The Vedas, most sections of which are filled with the praise of deities and the description of sacrificial fires, are written in the ancient Sanskrut language of the Aryans. That is why the inferences arising from Vedic literature are vague and unclear. On the contrary the Mahabharat is written in the present day Sanskrut language and hence is generally lucid.
    It is a compilation of the historical events of the ancient period. The praise of the Mahabharat sung at its beginnng is in a way befitting it. It goes thus -
    धर्मे चार्थे च कामे च मोक्षे च पुरुषर्षभ ।
    यदेहास्‍ति तदन्‍यत्र यन्‍नेहास्‍ति न तत्‍क्‍वचित्‌ ।
    Meaning: O great man, you will come across whatever is written in this holy text about the four pursuits (purusharthas), that is Righteousness (Dharma), wealth (artha), desire (kama) and the Final Liberation (Moksha) in all other texts and whatever is not given here will not be found anywhere.
  • Glorification of Righteousness: The chief objective of the Mahabharat is defining Righteousness and explaining it. When describing any event, Sage Vyas’ expansive motive was only to preach Righteousness. Throughout the Mahabharat there is a constant mention of Righteousness‘यतो धर्मस्‍ततो जय: meaning victory prevails where there is Righteousness’ which is the slogan of theMahabharat. The four verses (shlokas) called Bharatsavitri which are present in the concluding part of this holy text express Righteousness as the sole motive of this holy text. One of the verses from it says -
    न जातु कामान्‍न भयान्‍न लोभात्‌ धर्मं त्‍यजेज्‍जीवितस्‍यापि हेतो: ।
    नित्‍यो धर्म: सुखदु:खे त्‍वनित्‍ये नित्‍यो जीवो धातुरस्‍य त्‍वनित्‍य: ।।
    Meaning: One should never forsake Righteousness out of desire, fear, greed or fear of loss of life because Righteousness is permanent while happiness and unhappiness are only momentary. The embodied soul is eternal while the gross body is temporary.
    On the pretext of writing the story of the Mahabharat, Sage Vyas transformed the events on the battlefield into a Sanhita (commentary) on Righteousness. Just as the Gayatri mantra summarises the Vedas so also Righteousness is the gist of the Mahabharat.’(4)
  • Sage Vyas’ divine intellect: ‘Out of all the holy texts and literary works written by Sage Vyas, theMahabharat has received divine accolades. Vyas has presented all the three Darshans of life such as the science of economics (arthashastra), the science of Righteousness (Dharmashastra) and the science of the Final Liberation (Mokshashastra) in beautiful, interesting stories using flowery language. Enlightenment of detailed knowledge about the Aryan race and their expansive social life occurs through it.
    In the real sense the Mahabharat is an encyclopaedia of ancient India (Bharat). It is a renowned epic in world literature. On one hand the Mahabharat is an eternal treasure house of morality andRighteousness (Dharma) and on the other a compilation of the ancient eternal science of unmetrical compositions (gathashastra). Sage Vyas has not written the Mahabharat simply enumerating the events of the past, were it so then it would merely gather dust in a bookcase like any other historical text. However the Mahabharat is presented before us as a live event.
  • Food for poets: The Mahabharat is an unending treasure of topics for poets. Great Sanskrut poets like Kalidas, Bharavi, Magh, etc. have chosen their main topics of poetry from the Mahabharat itself. The tradition of selecting a story or event from the Mahabharat and transforming it into poetry is continuing even today.’(5)
C. The radiant Mahabharat: ‘Just like wealth and the effulgence of a warrior (kshatratej) industriousness or efforts comprises the third part of the material code of Righteousness. In the Mahabharat one comes across great men like Krushna, Bhishma, Bhim, Arjun, etc. who constantly praise efforts. Lord Shrikrushna (Mahabharat 5.77) has said, “Man should continue his efforts. He should not become weak, depressed or helpless only because of his bad destiny.”
     Caution, concentration and bravery are also praised on various occasions in the Mahabharat. After reading quotes in this regard one is able to appreciate the worldly code of Righteousness from the Mahabharat. A prosperous kingdom, an opulent lifestyle, a powerful empire were the great expectations imprinted upon the minds of those men. They wished that people should untiringly strive towards this. They did not appreciate criticism of the six foes of the soul (shadripu). They were fully aware that man cannot perform valorous deeds without rage, anger and desire for opulence. They had realised that without bravery and the preparedness to die or to kill one could not acquire opulence. This holy text mainly inspires worldly progress, the paths to achieve it and explicitly substantiates that everything is futile without worldly splendour. This great text creates the aspirations of worldly opulence, conquest of the world, fame resounding in all the three regions of earth, heaven and the nether world, etc. in the mind of man and inspires him to undertake war and to be prepared to die or kill.’(6)
D. Some implied meanings from the Mahabharat: Pandit Narendra Sharma says - Yudhishthir is in reality the absolute ether (akash) element. He maintains the balance between happiness and unhappiness, but his attraction for a game of dice and the consequences arising from it are his fate. Arjun represents the absolute fire element, Bhim is the absolute air or vital energy element, Nakul the absolute water element and Sahadev the absolute earth element. Thus they are representatives of the cosmic elements. Draupadi is the union of the five cosmic elements, the upward flowing energy of life who has emerged from the altar of the fire sacrifice (hom). However she is less virtuous because of the subtle discrimination that she makes between her husbands. Duryodhan can be summed up as the obstinacy of King Dhrutarashtra. Karna is very powerful, capable of sacrificing everything, very generous; but shadowed by tremendous ego which is the only ‘defect’ in his invincible armour. Need one speak anything on Lord Shrikrushna ? He is an absolute incarnation (purnavtar), the centre of attraction of the entire Mahabharat.

7. The Shrimadbhagvadgita

The Shrimadbhagvadgita narrated by Lord Shrikrushna to Arjun is the jewel in the crown of the Mahabharat. Chapters 25 to 42 of the Bhishmaparva of the Mahabharat narrate the Gita. It is considered as the main holy text of the Hindu religion (Dharma) and of morality (niti) as well. The word Shrimadbhagvadgita can be explained as -
Shrimad (t) :That sung by The Lord
Bhag           :Like the sun (bhag means effulgence)
Vad (t)        :That assisting in displaying its light
Gita            :Song (git)
Just as the Mahabharat has 18 parvas, the Gita has 18 adhyays (chapters). At no point is the style of the Gitauninteresting. Its main objective is to teach Spirituality. Unlike the Buddhist Dhammapad it is not confined only to teaching morality. The notes of the Gita are so melodious that one feels that one is being showered with the divine nectar of words, by a friend. This mode of speech of Lord Shrikrushna has generated from Sage Vedavyas in the superconscious (samadhi) state.
‘The pradnyavad (philosophy of intellect) is a vast Darshan of those times. Krushna followed this philosophy. Buddha too belonged to this school of thought but when following it He was influenced by the path of self-abnegation as that of an ascetic and He accepted the tradition of renunciation of the Sankhyas which is predominantly based on sacrifice of worldly life. Krushna used the basis of the Vedic Path of Action (Karmayoga). Along with this philosophy, on one hand He accepted actions (karma) and the four pursuits of life (purusharthas) and on the other also substantiated a vision of the effulgent Brahman which has evolved from the Vedic school of thought. Apart from this He appropriately honoured the philosophies of the Sankhyafollowers like those of Sage Kapil.’(7)

8. The Purans

A. Meaning: ‘पुरा नवं भवती ।’ means that which is ever new despite being old, is the Puran.
B. Importance
  • The Purans follow the Shrutis and Smrutis in the order of importance. A quote ‘श्रुतिस्‍मृतिपुराणोक्‍त फलप्राप्‍त्‍यर्थं’ meaning that ‘one derives benefits according to that prescribed in theShrutis, Smrutis and Purans’ is found in the resolve (sankalpa) in all religious rituals.
  • In modern times the Purans are the main support of the worldly code of Righteousness (Dharma) of a follower of Hinduism.
  • The Purans are accorded the highest status in popular Sanskrut literature. Authors of the Purans have shown the path of upliftment to men and women belonging to all castes and communities along with the code of Righteousness for those following the Vedas and the three classes (varna) namely Brahmans(priests), Kshatriyas (warriors) and Vaishyas (businessmen).
    The Purans narrate stories to illustrate a point . The history being from different kalpas (periods of time) in the same volume there is a slight difference in stories of the contemporary times. Different spiritual doctrines are delivered through these stories. However some stories are totally imaginary.
C. Important Purans: The eighteen Purans are named differently in various Purans. The main Purans as given in the Matsyapuran (chapter 53) are : BrahmanPadmaVishnuVayuBhagvatNaradiyaMarkandeya,AgneyaBhavishyaBrahmavaivartaLingaVarahaSkandaVamanKurmaMatsyaGarud and Brahmand. The other Purans have substituted some of these Purans by alternative ones. The Bhagvatpuran is the most popular among all the Purans. It is described below.

8.1 The sub-Purans (upapurans)

‘The Purans other than the eighteen great Purans from Sanskrut literature are called the sub-Purans. They are related to some great Purans (Mahapurans). It is an age old misconcept that they were composed after the great Purans and are inferior in status. However it has been proven that some sub-Purans are even older than the great Purans.
Since the Vedic period the Purans are prevalent in the form of literature by Sage Sut. The Vedic Aryans accorded importance to them immediately after the Vedas. Over the passage of time the spread of Buddhism and Jainism came as a blow to the Vedic religion. So the Smart (followers of the SmrutisBrahmans utilised thePurans to resurrect their own sects and on their basis re-established the code of Righteousness of the classes and stages of life (varnashramdharma). In those days the three sects worshipping the deities Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh were the BrahmaPancharatra and Pashupat sects respectively. Later during the reign of the Gupta dynasty the Bhagvat sect flourished.
The Purans written by Brahmans of the Smart sect became famous as the great Purans (Mahapurans). Their compilation had begun before the commencement of the Christian calendar. After their completion they were eighteen in number. The number was probably fixed at eighteen because it is considered as an auspicious figure. Sub-sects of the BrahmaPancharatra and Pashupat sects sprung up thereafter. The Smarts in these sects wrote new Purans. Believers of the eighteen Purans did not accept these new Purans; however because of their fame and popularity they had to be accorded at least a secondary status. That is why by inserting some verses (shlokas) in the Matsyapuran the new Purans were renamed as the sub-Purans.
Since the great Purans were considered superior and the authority, they were expanded through additions made in them. That is why the great Purans available today are not reliable historically. This was not the case with the sub-Purans. They were accorded a secondary status; hence neither were new styles incorporated in them nor were any additions made. Consequently their original format remained unchanged so the information contained in them is more reliable.’(8)

9. The Bhagvatpuran

‘Maharshi Vyas divided the Vedic compositions into four parts (Vedas). Despite writing the Brahmasutras, eighteen Purans and the Mahabharat (Jay) His mind was still restless. Specially when writing the Mahabharat, as Vyas had to describe various wars, plots and conspiracies, destruction of the army of eighteen hundred trillion on the battlefield of Kurukshetra and the melancholic frustration spread over India as its consequence, He felt dejected and restless. When in such a state He met Sage Narad whom He told His woe, Sage Narad replied, “You have not described The Lord’s immaculate success in detail. You have not described Lord Vasudev’s glory at all. Though the scripture bestows spiritual knowledge, if it does not teach devotion unto The Lord, then it is inappropriate. You have illustrated the path of materialism (pravruttimarg) but remember that other than devotion unto The Lord there is no other means of realising Him. So write a separate holy text narrating the biography of Shrikrushna with devotion and spiritual emotion. That will rid You of Your restlessness.”
Thereafter Vyas devotedly began writing the Bhagvatpuran and in its tenth skanda (volume) wrote the entire biography of Lord Krushna. He was able to write on the unparalleled hero, The Lord of Yoga (Yogeshvar) Krushna. As a result His devotion began to flow like the river Bhagirathi and His spiritual intellect blossomed anew. He composed several exquisite verses (stotras) on Krushna. Thus the Bhagvat came to be established as an epic of devotion. After completing this text, Vyas was at peace with Himself.’(9) This example amply illustrates that the Path of Devotion (Bhaktiyoga) is superior to the Paths of Action (Karmayoga) and Knowledge (Dnyanyoga). After its completion, Vyas read it out to Shuk, His son who had already totally renounced the world !

10. The Prasthanatrayi

‘The UpanishadsVedantasutras and Bhagvadgita are the three precious holy texts of Indian philosophy. Their triad is referred to as the Prasthanatrayi.
  • In the Prasthanatrayi, the Upanishads occupy the first position. They are the absolute authority. The authenticity of the other two texts in this triad is based on the Upanishads. The Upanishads are also known as the Shrutiprasthan. It includes the IshKenKathPrashnaMundakMandukyaTaittiriya,AitareyaChandogyaBruhadaranyakKaushitaki and Shvetashvatar, the twelve main Upanishads. The ‘Vedanta’ is a synonym for the Upanishads and has actually appeared in one or two ancient Upanishads(Mundak 3.2.6, Shvetashvatar 6.22). As against this, the Vedantasutras or the Vedantadarshans are often referred to as the Vedanta. The Vedanta refers to the end (anta) of the Vedas implying that it is the very culmination of the study of Vedic literature.
  • The Vedantasutras are also called the NyayaprasthanVedantaVedantadarshanBrahmasutras,Sharirak Mimansa or Uttarmimansa. Sage Badarayan or Krushnadvaipayan is the author of theseSutras. He is also known as Vedavyas.’(10)
  • The Bhagvadgita and the Sanatsujat Sanhita are called the Smrutiprasthan.


Reference:
‘Righteousness (Dharma)’, published by Sanatan Sanstha.
Bharatiya Sanskrutikosh. Publisher: Pandit Mahadevshastri Joshi, Secretary, Bharatiya Sanskrutikosh Mandal, 410 Shanivar Peth, Pune 411 030.
First edition: Vol. 3 to 10, Second edition: Vol. 1 and 2
[1]. Vol. 4, Pg. 596-599          [3]. Vol. 7, Pg. 674-677
[4]. Vol. 7, Pg. 155-182          [5]. Vol. 9, Pg. 159
[6]. Vol. 7, Pg. 173-175          [7]. Vol. 7, Pg. 182
[8]. Vol. 1, Pg. 673                  [9]. Vol. 9, Pg. 160-161
[10.] Vol. 5, Pg. 738
[2]. Dharmashastracha Itihas. Second edition : 1980, Publisher: Secretary, Maharashtra State Literary and Cultural Society, Secretariat, Mumbai 400 034., Pg. 48-49
Tuesday, 19 February 2013
Posted by Shoumik Das

How did Lord Maruti acquire the name Hanuman?


hanuman

Contents


1. History and some other Names

‘There is no mention of Hanuman made anywhere in Vedic literature. Researchers feel that “Hanumant” must be the Sanskrut form of a Tamil word. When translating Dravidian words into Sanskrut there is a practice of mostly prefixing the alphabet “h” to the word, for instance Idumbika (proud woman) becomes Hidimba, so also Anmandi (an meaning monkey and mandi meaning man) when translated to Sanskrut becomes Hanuman. Hanuman is also known as “Anumandan” in South India. This implies that “h” from the Sanskrut word has been omitted here.’ The story behind the birth of Hanuman is given in Valmiki Ramayan (Kishkindhakandsarga 66) as follows: Anjani gave birth to Hanuman. After birth, thinking that the rising sun was a golden fruit He leapt into the sky for it. That day being a solar eclipse (parvatithi) Rahu (the dragon’s head) had come to engulf the sun. Thinking that Hanuman was another Rahu Lord Indra attacked Him with His thunderbolt. It struck Hanuman’s chin (hanuvati) which got cut and developed a cleft. Thus he acquired the name Hanuman.
In a way Maruti also becomes Rama’s brother because along with the queens of King Dasharath, Anjani who was also performing austerities received the sweet (payas) from the sacrificial fire (yadnya) and it was because of this that Maruti was born. It was the full moon (pournima) day of the Hindu lunar month of Chaitra. This is celebrated as the birthday of Hanuman (Hanuman jayanti).
‘Hanumant is also known as Maruti. In the Mahabharat He is referred to as Marutatmaja. The word Maruti has originated from the word Marut. There are many schools of thought regarding Maruti and Rudra.
Maruts are the sons of Rudra and so is Maruti.’
‘There are eleven rudras. Since Hanuman too is a rudra He is included in these eleven. Bhim is one of the Names of the eleven rudras. Hanuman has also been referred to as “Bhimrupi Maharudra”. It is believed that probably Hanumant’s five faced idols have been derived due to the influence of the five-faced idol of Rudrashiva.
Hanuman is considered an incarnation of Lord Rudra. Researchers opine that the relationship between Hanuman and Rudra must have originated in the era of the Purans. In the story from the Ramayan narrating Hanuman’s birth, Vayu (generated from absolute air) is referred to as His father. Later due to His innate qualities He became an incarnation of Lord Rudra. The relationship between Hanuman and Lord Rudra has been clearly illustrated in the Skand Puran, Brahmavaivarta Puran, Narad Puran, Shiva Puran, Bhavishya Puran, Mahabharat Puran, etc.’

2. Mission and special features

2.1 Omnipotent

Among all deities only Maruti cannot be troubled by distressing energies. In Lanka there were lakhs of demons yet they could not do anything to Maruti. There is a tale which says that Maruti leapt to devour the sun as soon as He was born. From this it is obvious that Maruti, son of Vayu [generated from vayu (absolute air)] was one who could win over the sun [tej(absolute fire) element]. Of the pruthvi (absolute earth), apa (absolute water), tej (absolute fire), vayu (absolute air) andakash (absolute ether) elements the vayu element is the most subtle and therefore more powerful than the tej element.
  • Spirits and Maruti: Maruti is considered as the master of spirits. Hence when someone is possessed by a spirit he is taken to Hanuman’s temple or verses (stotras) of Maruti are recited.

2.2 Devotee

Even today the best example to illustrate devotion as a servant (dasyabhakti) is that of Maruti towards Rama. He was ever-ready to sacrifice even His life for the sake of His Lord. Before the service of His Lord even attainment of Liberation (Moksha) was worthless to Him. Hanuman is a combination of a servitor and a soldier!

2.3 Constant vigilance and spiritual practice

As the battle continued Maruti would sit aside and meditate for sometime. However even at that time He would remain alert, with His tail resting on His mace.

2.4 Intelligent

‘None could match Maruti in grammar rules, as an instructor and director, an envoy, a commentator and a compiler.’ (Uttarramacharita, 36.44-46) Maruti is referred to as the eleventh proponent of grammar.

2.5 A great psychologist and an expert politician

In many instances not only Sugriva, the king of monkeys but even Rama has heeded Maruti’s advice. When several lieutenants opposed the move of giving refuge to Bibhishan who had deserted Ravan’s army camp, Maruti was the only one who opined that he should be taken onto their side and Rama accepted His counsel. His intelligence and expertise in psychology is clearly illustrated in several instances like when He generated trust in Sita at Their very first meeting in Lanka, His setting Lanka ablaze to demoralise the enemy camp; His being chosen by Rama to see Bharat’s response to Rama’s arrival, etc.

2.6 Mastery over the senses (jitendriya)

Hanuman’s mental state when in search of Sita in Ravan’s haven illustrates His noble character. At that time He says to Himself “Although I saw Ravan’s wives lying about carefree, I was not at all tempted by lust.” - Valmiki Ramayan,Sundarkand 11.42- 43. Several saints too have ritualistically worshipped this Hanuman who had mastery over His senses and placed Him as an icon before society.

2.7 Expert in literature, philosophy and the art of oratory

2.8 Founder of the science of Music

Maruti is considered a prominent founder of music. His connection with Rudra is probably the reason why He is called so. Rudra is a form of Lord Shiva. Since sound originated from Shiva’s small hourglass shaped drum (Damaru) Shiva is thought to be the founder of music. It is only after realising the musical talent in Maruti that Samarth Ramdas Swami conferred the title ‘Sangitdnyanmahanta’ meaning the great knower of music, upon Him.

2.9 Founder of the Dhvajanath sect

The Nath sect has twelve sub-sects and Hanuman is considered to be the founder of the Dhvajanath sect among them. The followers of this sect are devotees of Hanuman.

2.10 One who responds to the vows of devotees

Even today several men and women circumambulate Hanuman’s idol daily as a vowed observance due to the belief that this deity responds to one’s vows. Some people find it amazing that girls whose marriages do not materialise are advised to worship the celibate Hanuman. Based on psychology some erroneously jump to the conclusion that girls who wish to marry a robust man worship Maruti. However the real reasons for the worship are as follows.
  • 30% of those who remain unmarried are so because of the influence of spirits, black magic and other distressing energies. By worshipping Maruti these obstacles are overcome and they are able to get married. (10% of people remain unmarried due to high expectations about the bride or groom. Once these expectations are reduced they can get married. 50% remain unmarried due to destiny. If the destiny is mild or moderate then by worshipping the family deity this can be overcome. However if the destiny is severe then it is only with a saint’s grace that marriage can occur. The remaining 10% remain unmarried due to other spiritual causes and for that, the treatment depends on the cause.)
  • Among deities of the highest level there are no differences between celibates and married ones. Also since they are born by a mere resolve (not born through the vaginal route) there are no gender differences among them. These differences are created by man. A female deity is but a representation of a deity’s energy.

2.11 Immortal

Each time Lord Rama incarnates He is one and the same but in each incarnation Maruti is different. Although He is one of the seven immortal beings (saptachiranjivas) these beings attain the Final Liberation (Moksha) at the end of the four eras (yugs). They are then replaced by seven very highly evolved beings.

2.12 Principle, ability and manifest energy

The meaning of these words is given in ‘Principle, ability and manifest energy’.
  • Principle: Vishnu principle 70%, Shiva principle 10% (Vishnu / Shiva / God = 100% principle). Although Maruti is an incarnation of Lord Shiva due to worship of Lord Rama the Vishnu principle in Him is greater than the Shiva principle.
  • Ability: Creation 10%, sustenance 70% and dissolution 20%.

Reference: ‘Vishnu and His forms’, published by Sanatan Sanstha.
Posted by Shoumik Das
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Dear Brethren, The most important thing is to enjoy your life - to be happy - it's all that matters. Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself. Life is a dream for the wise, a game for the fool, a comedy for the rich, a tragedy for the poor. Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment. Throughout the life people will make you mad, disrespect you and treat you bad. Let God deal with the things they do, cause hate in your heart will consume you too. Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time. Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later. Either I will find a way, or I will make one. Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. DREAM BIG, Work HARD...!

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