3.15.2005

The world beyond the senses.

i am currently neck deep into shaivism trying to understand if not realize its various facets. i have reached the end of the road as far as art history books are concerned, from here on the path is beginning to look different. i cannot follow cold blooded logic anymore, i need to emote. i need to start feeling it to get the complete drift.

this has raised questions, unexplained questions which are so difficult to understand because they restrict a person within the world of senses and do not let him look beyond that. strange questions like who are gandharvas, kinnaras, yakshas and yakshis. i have heard them to be some sort of spirits as aghora puts it believing in them is quite a different story.
there are other questions on why the path of circum-ambulation has been so important. its seems to be in line with the fields of energy that encircles the main garbha griha, which itself is the main store house of potent energy.
another thought is about the mention of vehicles like pushpaka vimana which can be controlled by the mind and necessarily has a charioteer. well that apart there are "divyastras" like the "pasupatastra" which can kill and destroy the whole universe. the rules of usage are precribed that it should not be "wasted" on a mere mortal as it can cause great harm, but should be used on a supernatural being privileged to handle it. it can be controlled by the mind, the eyes, as well as the bow.
well why look at people out of mythology, the lotus flower itself is believed to be a store house of energy. hence most of the energy centers along the spine in kundalini yoga are depictions of a lotus flower with varied number of petals, with the bija mantra of a particular deity embedded in them.
on a larger scale we can just wonder why the caves of elephanta (mumbai) are carved the way they are. its based on the mandala pattern of shiva, with most of his sculptures adorning its walls. Or for that matter why are there so many erotic sculptures around the temples of khajuraho? they conceal tantric diagrams of mandalas used to protect the temple, which distract the uninitiated from knowing the true value of these sculptures and delight them with raw sex instead.

to be honest our forefathers were not playing the fool. the temple of chidambaram was not constructed for fun but based on the energy center of one of the chakras known in kundalini yoga. hinduism is a way a life. it needs to be understood and passionately. its beyond the limits of the senses and therefore can only be experienced and cannot be explained. its subtle and complex and it requires deep intellect to get the hang of it.
the west will never get it right, because they are blinded by their senses. they believe in that which exists, that which can be touched, smelt, tasted, seen, or heard. within this limited scope the west has managed to prove certain things, the rest has largely been left to imagination.

there is a lot to learn here, and until we have the drive, we aint going to get anywhere near it. nothing comes easy, nothing can be spoon fed. thats the whole reason why we have lasted this long. i really wonder what kind of free world they are talking about. every thing has a meaning, every ritual has a purpose. maybe we are not half as interested to know what we are fully capable of.

5 comments:

abhilash warrier said...

Kavi,

I think you are on a threshold. I have been there. Just be there.

Time will pass by and you will pass through on your own.

You can do it.

Srini said...

Excellent words Kavitha!

Everytime I read these posts, I learn a lot. I agree with your views wrt Hinduism and the Western World.

Btw,the Srimad Bhagavatam mentions about the demigods and also people who inhabit the upper worlds (suvar, maha,jana tapa lokas) like kinnaras, kimpurushas.

Keep writing . is there a site where i can access the photos of the temple that U have taken ?

Thanks
Srini

J C Joshi said...

Although words fail to express a realization, I would like to recall - as a typical example - India receiving political independence from the British rule of over a century in the year 1947. It was apparently a victory of the ‘combined intelligence’ of the then advocates of Indian origin who discovered loopholes in till then believably time-tested invincible legal system under the ‘foreign’ rule. Although, apparently ironically or as a part of the design the present day advocates also have continued to do so even when apparently we have a ‘self-rule’ since 1947!

The above could perhaps help one, as it seems to have been realised in the ‘past’ also, to realise how ‘Time’ could similarly be forcing an individual or a nation into a state of stupor for an apparently long duration, to lead one surprisingly to a ‘new’ invention or ‘discovery’ at some given instant in ‘future’! For example, millions had seen apples fall from trees. But, it could inspire only Newton to develop his classical ‘laws of motion’ only a few centuries ago. On the other hand, however, one also comes to know how a large numbers of inventions and discoveries (like Fleming’s discovery of Penicillin) are results of ‘accidents’ (as a natural design?)

In view of the above, at this stage itself one could conclude the existence of a ‘super intelligent’ being as the probable cause of the physical world or ‘Nature’. However, ‘slavery of time’ obliges the majority to explain the happenings as either ‘accidents’, and their repetitions as ‘coincidences’, and not a ‘design’, till it brings forth an individual from thin air, such as, Shankaracharya, who states the law of ‘Advaitvad’ or a single Person as responsible for the entire physical forms in our universe, as also his opponents for crreating confusion and need for rersearch.

Examples similar to the above cited, seem to have lead the ancients to the basic question: Who am I? They explained the beginning of the ‘drama’ of an individual human life as an illusory or temporary body receiving from the environment a particular Atma or ‘soul’, which is at some particular ‘elevation’ at the time of the apparent birth of that individual, it having started at its possible topmost level at the beginning of the day of Brahma (Sun), and which therefore determines the apparent behaviour of that form with time to move either upwards or downwards depending on the ‘leanings of the particular body’. A ‘soul’ is believed to be some kind of a special energy that itself is a part of the one and only super energy (Paramatma) that is unborn and undying, and therefore the goal of all individual souls in the drama of human life.

The basic problem in accepting the above belief by a layman is the limitation of the physical senses of the human body to ‘see’ the soul. And, like one gains knowledge about different forms of transformable energy, viz., Heat, Light , Sound, Electricity, Magnetism, one needs Knowledge to be acquired through inferences about the possible varieties of souls. For example, one learns how dry cells could operate a transistor radio or a clock, or other toys etc. However, a single cell can operate only one ‘working system’ at a time, and its efficiency depends on the hours it is already in use. The system fails to operate once you remove the cell even though the system is apparently in a ‘working condition’ and the cell could still be nearly fully charged. Similarly, one knows that the Heavenly Bodies are in existence because of balance between the system and the gravitational force. A Heavenly Body also collapses when the gravity fails…

Perhaps, one could thus realize how the ancients believed ‘death’ to be the removal of the ‘soul’ from the body. And, the present day knowledge also confirms the possible reuse of the body organs in another body, like cannibalizing of machine parts is possible… This could help in realizing how ‘Nature’ is a chain like system functioning similarly as links form a chain, interlinking Heavenly Bodies, humans and man-made machines. And, also realize the wisdom of the ancients in reaching the conclusion that man is a model of the universe…

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Pavan K Malladi said...

Hi Kavitha,
Came to read your blog via a search that I was doing. My wife had dreamt of a Shiva Bimba with a moustache et al. I was searching for where Shiva is depicted with a moustache and came across your blog on Mahabalipuram and then your blog depicting the grand and universal nature of the hindu religion.
Felt good reading it. While I read it I did realize that while you have progressed in your intellectual pursuits, your subtle ego is preventing you from crossing some very important thresholds. I realized it the moment my wife's bhakthi was taking her faster through the journey than my simple learnings. I am now conscious of my ego and working on it. Reading your work, I feel you are also right there.
So abandon all your learnings and then you will get a feeling of deep love, from that will arise a potent force that will catapult you beyond these simple and meaningless thresholds built by our own intelligence.
Good luck. And may you find your path quickly.

Regards,
Pavan Malladi