3.18.2008

Kalika Mata at Kalighat, a sacred Shakti Peetha


When power is felt up close,
When the female energy in all its fury hits the eye,
When the sound of the conch shell deafens the ear,
Where innocent lambs are slaughtered without a doubt,
Where the floor is a mixture of blood and sacred sindhoor,
The power of being woman comes alive
We are at Kalika Mata temple Kalighat

To read about tantricism is one thing, to actually witness it is quite another. Kali mandir might look normal to anyone, but the effect it left behind was one of mixed feeling within me. All I could see was a helpless lamb being bathed and waiting to be slaughtered, traumatized by the impending reality gaping at it right there on a bright Saturday morning.

As the silvery streaks of water celebrated the lamb with its body shining gold as a sacred offering, and red smeared its face proclaiming it a sacred meal, and the animal is ceremoniously brought to the stake. The head is led through two vertical poles and a third locks it from above, a few sacred words are spelt out to appease the Mother's ever hungry appetite for blood.

The flames rise, the fire lights up her deep red eyes, setting ablaze her fury, and her face looks on awakening the abstraction of her presence - the power of the mother is here. The bells ring and the blade cuts through without question, splattering blood to the floor. Divine food is collected in the cup and offered to the mother, a drop after another rolls down her golden tongue in the twilight.

A half bust black stone is all that one can visualize this power in, crowned by three enrapturing eyes that grab your attention. The Goddess tilts slightly to one side. Her two prominent arms have a deadly sickle in one and wears bangles in the other. This whole form, has the formidable appearance of a Goddess in anger, her fury so vividly captured that the heart pounds when we stare at her face to face.
Nakulish kalipithe dakshapadangulishu cha|
Sarbadhikari devi kalika tatra devta||

This was once a deserted small temple with fewer lights. What stands now as the mother with arms on the silver body of Lord Shiva was once just an abstraction that represented the fury of Sati that lives on well after her right toe fell here, cut through by Vishnu's discus, proclaiming it a Shakti Peetha. There was a time when the flames set ablaze this fury of the goddess that was appeased by the taste of human blood.

What surrounds this shakti peetha is a wondrous experience of intense faith coupled with brutality of sacrifice, where the skinning of innocent lambs is a common delight, an offering so sacred that I dare not oppose it in the name of sympathy for innocent life. The only thing I can do is cut three crosses at the balipeeth myself, wash away any dosh in my life and symbolically place my neck there, with my head in offering to calm the wrath of this divine form of the Goddess.

O Mother
Whose eyes can burn this universe
Whose presence can reduce this world to ash
Who is invoked by only those who dare
Who lives in the cremation ground
Who burns with the dead corpse
Who blesses them by pressing their heart
Who guides their ambition by stepping on their thighs
Who brings alive the fiery form of death
Who stares with her three eyes open through the flames
Who raises us from the dead
Who takes us into her lap of love
Who renders us fearless
O Mother, why an innocent lamb, why?

34 comments:

JC said...

I wish I had the faith
Like the wise ancients
And believed
'I' too once was a lamb
An imperfect being
And that my body too
Perhaps served as prasad
Or holy food
That helped released soul
To receive blessings
From elevated souls
Within human forms
In Satya-yuga
The perfect yuga
That helped my soul evolve
From one animal form
To another fresh one
Till my soul attained
The perfect human form
A true copy of Shiva
The perfect being...
I wish Mother of mothers
Would kindly bless my soul
In this life itself...

Anonymous said...

Pranams, all...

I like the look of this Deity, I never saw a picture of this Deity before. Thanks for sharing it.

I read that in earlier yugas, when animal sacrifices were performed, the animal could be restored to life again when the yajna was completed ~ that was the acid test as to potency of the priest and the ritual being performed correctly.

Also in Tibet area where they have slaughterhouses, they recite sacred mantras over the animal so the soul can have a better rebirth.

Compare this with "factory farmed" animals today:

the diet they are fed [ground up cows are fed to cows, ground up chickens fed to chickens],

how they are raised [indoors in small spaces where they cannot even turn around and live in their own excrement],

their medical "care" [they are injected with massive amounts of hormones],

and how they are slaughtered [too gruesome to share, you can find the details on any animal rights website].


In addition ~
the runoff of the manure in these huge factory farm warehouses then enters the nearby water table. Next, the massive amounts of antibiotics in this sludge enter the environment: the soil, the water table, the grass and plants.

These huge amounts of antibiotics entering the environment is one reason why MRSA-CA is being spread so rapidly all over the world.

MRSA-CA is resistant staph bacteria that just used to exist in hospitals and old age homes mostly, now I recently read in a science magazine that MRSA-CA is now found in extremely high quantities near these factory farmed places where enormous amounts of animal antibiotics have entered the environment.

Then kids playing in the nearby river, in the field, in the grass, in the soil pick up this resistant staph and can die within just a few hours or days. Most school-age kids are said to have this MRSA-CA virus in their nose now.

It is like some kind of a science nightmare, and all began with this factory farming of animals and overuse of animal antibiotics. Because the animals have no natural immunity to disease how they are raised in these factory farms.


At least in Kalighat this is not happening also ~ is it? The animal has a more natural life ~? Can see the sun, play in the grass, have children and romp with them ~?

Also at least in Kalighat the people in the nearby community can see what is the reality of animal sacrifice and if they want it there and if they want to participate in it or not: it's not like a factory farm hidden away with barbed wire fences and high security cameras like a concentration camp for mammals.

It's kind of more "out there" and "in your face".

And at least more people are allowed to learn how to read and write these days, plus we have the internet and libraries: so we can do our own research and learn the history of humans relationships with other mammals in various cultures of the world and decide for ourselves:

is this sacrifice being correctly performed?

is it something that should continue?


Also, I have a question: is the lamb eaten afterwards as a type of prasada? What is done these days after the sacrifice?

And just free-associating...coming up in Western countries is Easter, in Christianity Christ was said to be "the lamb of God"...because in the Abrahamic religions they had animal sacrifice, was usually a lamb. So I'm wondering about cross-cultural influences...does animal sacrifice happen more in Northern India?

Aum Namah Shivaya

Designer Streaks said...

This is really terrible, Why an innocent lamb..........

Even I have heard that the sacrificed meat is distributed and eaten as prasad.........

What i dont understand is how a mother can be appeased with the sacrifice of her own childrens.........

Though, what Joshi Uncle says, makes sense, but do we have the right and the authority to release soul from a body.............

kavitha said...

I seriously feel we do not have the right to take a life based on ritual - but if i was a staunch believer on the other side I probably would say its ok.

I dont think any bengali anywhere around the Kalighat mandir ever felt they were doing the wrong thing.

The strange thing though is that Dakshineswar doesnt seem to have any prominent balipeeth, where these rituals are performed. Interesting!!

Regds
Kavitha

Anonymous said...

Kavitha didi,

What is a balipeeth? I tried to google it but no results. I think I know but I'm not sure.

Aum Saravanabhava Aum
Aum Namah Shivaya

kavitha said...

Balipeetha is a stone placed in front of every shrine in big temples. When one enters the temple they first come to the balipeeth near the dwajastambh and then to the Vahan (vehicle) and then the door to the sanctum.

Balipeeth(a) was originally teh altar stone on which sacrifices were made - human, animal and vegetarian. It is a round/square black stone appearing like an inverted lotus( in the south at least) with 8 to 16 petals or more. People leave food offerings of both kinds(veg/non veg) for the deity here.

To place ones head at the balipeeth is to symbolically offer one's head to the deity, in the case of Kali her preferred meal is either a goat or a human. In ancient days people were sacrificed based on their caste - a kshatriya was considered to be a great offering and they were laid north south before being beheaded.

The practices get even wilder... but yes that was the grass root of hinduism at one point in time. :)

Regds
Kavitha

JC said...

Namaste everyone! The basic Hindu Philosophy is about Maya or illusion...what 'I' believe 'I' am getting to see, in Kaliyuga the remotest and therefore the imperfect most past, believably is only a projection as on a silver screen of a Bollywood film, a fictitious story, or something that happened according to a script written by a perfect being in the early stages of evolution...

One should, therefore, expect to view what all Sri Anon has described. And the things are expected to get worse with passage of time...With the global warming, in the ultimate scenario, Ganga, Jamuna waters are likely to peter out...

What can't be cured must be endured! Yogis advised one to just enjoy the external world while seeking the 'Absolute Truth' within!

JC said...

And, the 'wise' ancients, ie, the ones who advanced starting from Kaliyuga to the end of Satyuga - through Dwaper and Tretayugas too -till only Shiva the Trinetradhari the three-eyed-one alone achieved perfect balance between the spiritual and the material. The foregoing could be visualised with the help of a pyramid that has four trianglular faces that meet at one point, the unique one that represents the Formless Nadbindu, that is, the dot having concentrated infinite energy, but no physical form...as the true copy of the Creator, who has many dots that can be accommodated at different levels: the numbers increasing as one moves downwards from the summit, the largest numbers possible at the base, that represents the beginning or the start of churning of the milky-ocean at some given point in time, referred as Kaliyuga, ie, the 'Dark Age', when all souls were ignorant and imperfect to start with...

JC said...

Also, the 'wise ancients' conveyed that it is the Formless or Bhootnath Shiva who continues to review and admire His Own past from the summit to the base 1,080 times for over 4 billion years in a day in the life of Brahma the Sun, the source of white light that mainly applies to the imperfect souls, other than Shiva who has the 'Third Eye' functional, whereas perhaps the glare of the sun doesn't permit ordinary humans to realize the 'Absolute Truth' of existence of the lonely Formless Creator, who perhaps seeks His Own origin through various possible permutations and combinations of varieties of life forms, from micro-organism to man...the latter being the most destructive agent, but due to lack of overall knowledge one puts the blame on the virus or bacteria, or other life forms although one is aware on the other hand that man is the superior most among all life forms on earth. There are instances available where even a tiger wouldn't harm humans only if it is reassured that one wouldn't harm it! And in this regard, the wild life was apparently more advanced than man in Kaliyuga, for they are seen be not much affected by the apparent passage of time: A tiger in the wild behaves the same way as its predecessors...Bacteria are both helpful and harmful, but due to lack of clear-cut knowledge man, perhaps helplessly, kills both with antibiotics - thus gaining something at the cost of certain advantage that one had earlier, which now gets discontinued...

JC said...

Hi everybody! When 'I' read the Gita, the advised 'surrender in Krishna' raised the thought in 'my' head over two decades ago that everyone apparently every moment of one's life is anyway apparently surrendering to some desire or person. And, thus unless one believes or rather accepts that one is oneself the Creator and all other physical forms one's own images one cannot surrender one's actions into Him as advised!

The above thought then have shown me life from a different perspective as 'I' attempted to see through different eyes: that of the 'non living too, which apparently was done by the ancients too.

Thus 'I' have come to believe that there is nothing new that any particular individual at any time apparently believes being done by one! And, thus, the 'wise ancients' also, perhaps similarly, came to realise the existence of one and only 'Supreme Being' who is reviewing His Past through apparently different and innumerable eyes, like viewing from different levels of a pyramid, which results in the apparent hierarchy...

Maybe the visualisation of the above could be better understood from the multiple roles apparently played by an artist in a film based on a story-writer's flight of imagination and then himself/ herself reviewing, say during the Premier, his/ her own performance, and how and if he/ she could improve upon the performance in some other film in 'future'...

JC said...

'I' have always been seen as a person who doesn't belong to the 'present'. "my' wife used to tell me that our visitors used to yawn listening to my thoughts! And. 'I' used to tell her that 'I' had certain unanswered questions that constantly nagged me and therefore, with the hope of reaching at the 'truth', 'I' posed those questions to everyone. And, 'I' found answers to those from within myself, at certain stage irrespective of 'my' location ('good' or 'bad', 'clean' or 'dirty') or time, anytime during 'day' or 'night'!

JC said...

Hi Kavitha, 'I' haven't ever so far visited Kalighat at any time although 'I' did visit Calcutta (now Kolkata) a number of times: first time in the year 1959 during an educational tour as a student and later between the years '75 and '82, 'I' think. In the childhood, 'I' must have visited a Kali Temple in New Delhi umpteen times with my parents. Also, 'I' visited in the year 2006 the Kali Temple in Shimla...

It is believed that one visits Ma's temple only when she herself invites one there. But, 'I' never had the opportunity of viewing 'bali' that is offering of lamb, or some other animal in sacrifice.

'I' think the female of the human species, having been designed to play the role of the 'mother', gets emotionally disturbed to see sacrfice of animals. Comparatively speaking, men can perhaps be called 'stone hearted', or in other words, they perhaps can act better to reflect detachment. There are instances cited of historical characters, that is certain Kings even ordered execution of their own son if they were judged guilty...of course, one might find examples of hard hearted mothers also. As we have seen earlier also, Ma Kalika symbolocally represents destructive force, or the energy locked up at the core of planet earth that is perhaps seen on the surface of earth all the time in some corner or the other of the globe in the form of volcanoes...
Of course, it is a fact that the molten magma is at the shortest depth under the Himalayas compared to other places, as 'I' have discussed earlier also elsewhere...

In terms of Indian Railways, perhaps Howrah-Kalka Mail reflects the link between Himachal Prdesh (Kalka Town being located at the foot-hills of Shimla the 'summer capital' of 'British India' once upon a time) and Kolkata, universally associated with Mata Kalika...Hindus, of course, have believed Sati's body parts to have fallen all along the length of the Himalayan Range from west to the east...The different energy centres or 'shakti peethas' are reflected by various temples at different locations, such as Nainadevi, Jwalamukhi, Kamakhya, Tripureshwari, and so on...

Anonymous said...

Namaste all ~

Today is Panguni Uttiram, the Deity is taken to the waters for a dip at dawn [palani.org]

It is the most important festival at Palani Murugan Temple, lasting for ten days, when Purnima and Uttiram star coincide

Is the most auspicious day for celestial marriages to take place.

On this day also at Sri Rangam Ranganatha Temple takes places there also, Goddess Ranga nayaki
marries Lord Ranagnatha in the Panguni Mandapam

Also Murugam married Devasena, Lod Ram married Sita, and Shiva wed Meenakshi, according to my internet research. [If I am wrong, please correct me!]



Kavitha didi thanks your very cogent explanation! You are a good teacher!


Joshi Uncle is possible you may have a mild version of hypergraphia. [Source: National Geographic March 2005 cover story: "What's in Your Mind?"]

Pages 28-29 "Extreme Expression" is about hypergraphia, I probably have a touch of it also!

"...An irresistable urge to write and write and write, most often associated with temporal lobe epilepsy,...may lead to hyper-religious feelings and a sense that even the most trivial events are fille with heightened meaning and cosmic importance..."

"The key role of the temporal lobe ...may offer a window into the neural underpinnings of literary creativity and creativity in general..."


Anyways there's different levels of it, such as with autism spectrum there is a wide continuum from autism [low functionning] to aspergers [high IQ, college professors, researchers, computer programmers usually have it].

So I think there may be some neurological basis to how your brain is wired, Joshi Uncle, with the temporal lobes how you can see connections between so many things.

As a person with strong art background and academic training in both art and education, I tend not to view it like Natl Geog as something "bad" and something is "delusional" about seeing "even the most trivial events are filled with heightened meaning and cosmic importance".

Rather, most mystics that I have read about, in any tradition, their brain seems to be wired like that. For example, I remember reading in "A History of India" by Romila Thaper that some people think the Bengali mystic Chaitanya may have had epilepsy, and here you see that scientists link that part of the brain to having hyper-religious feelings.

At any rate, I enjoy what you write dear Uncle so "keep on keeping on!" Certainly you are very intelligent, have read alot and widely, and make connections with the things you have read.

In education is something called Bloom's taxonomy: the lowest level of comprehension is regurgitate or simply spit back facts, parroting the facts. The highest level of comprehension is "Analysis and Synthesis".

So you have life experience and are synthesizing a prodigious amount of material. It's nice we have this venue can share it thanks to Kavitha didi and thank you also for including me in it.


Best wishes to all
and may the inner mystical marriage of your Istha Devata take place in your heart on this
beautiful Purnima!

Aum Saravanabhava Aum
Aum Namah Shivaya

JC said...

Hi Sri Anon, Thanks and best wishes to all on the auspicious occasion of the festival of colours!

Me too, 'I' belong to the family of teachers to a certain extent. Although my father didn't get the opportunity to pursue higher education, being the youngest of the three brothers and happened to lose both parents by 17 years of age. His elder brothers, one of whom was a Headmaster in a school, then took care of him...

As you have rightly pointed out, we got exposed to literacy in the 'present' apparently more clearly and in chronological order from the 'westerners' (believably controlled by Venus/ Saturn when 'Krishna' wasn't fully evolved)), for whatever knowledge that is available in the 'east' was all in code words, sounded and also treated by us like fictious stories, apparently merely for 'time pass'...It is only when we apparently learn 'something new' via the 'west' it sounds deja vu, or already heard, but not seen happening in 'our holy land'!

We are unable to accept that Yogis or advanced instruments (computers) could have 'naturally' seen sitting at one location each and every corner of the apparent universe, which anyway was realized by 'Vedantis' to be illusory in the 'present'!

'I' do not know why, but 'I' have apparently been provided some spare time to seek the Formless Creator within 'me'...for some purpose best known to Him only...

JC said...

Thanks Sri Anon for the information about apparent functioning of human brain. 'I' had elsewhere recorded how the presence of 'historical characters', such as Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Meera Bai etc. had in a way helped 'me' believe that 'I' alone wasn't 'eccentric'...and the concept of the universe apparently expanding like a balloon and, therefore, perhaps having only one centre that must be occupied by the Creator (Nadbindu) Himself suggests all His Images to in fact be 'eccentric', or 'imperfect'!

Anonymous said...

Namaste all ~

Happy Festival of Colours to everyone!

Joshi Uncle, have confidence. Have faith in who you are.

"Sometimes the very thing that makes us different is what makes us beautiful" [-author unknown]

We live in a fantastic age where we can synthesize alot of knowledge.

The internet, books, magazines, journals, research, and some television shows are nice because we can find out that we are not alone, there's others like us out there.

Just to know that there's others like us out there makes us feel good, and not so alone.


For example, in my work I sometimes help a student who has multiple disabilites get through college. Sometimes the parents are so frustrated, because he needs so much help, due to the unique way his brain is wired.

But every now and then I read an article about a similar student, who also needed help, and same kind of help and to the same degree, and s/he made it through college!

Then I share it with the parent, and we all feel better that we are not alone. Hope is restored!

Sometimes we just feel isolated.


Also, the indigenous cultures of many countries had intuitive wisdom that the ancients in India had also, such as the yogis. Remember in the Satya and Treta and Dvapara Yugas people did not write things down so much. People communicated directly with the Gods and devas, by telepathy.

For example: check this out! "Anthropologist Felicitas Goodman discovered postures depicted in the art of ancient cultures that can open the door to the spirit world".

This is the intro to an article in Yoga Journal April 1997 p.92-166
about a lady who studied sculptures she found in indigenous cultures in Europe and the Americas.

She and her grad students emulated [imitated] the mudras and body positions of several famous ancient prehistoric statues found in Europe and the Americas, and found that the postures were just like yoga positions and mudras that help a person go into trance!

She and her students tried the postures out themselves and discovered this!

Some of the postures are called Olmec Diviner posture, Adena Pipe posture, Feathered Serpent, Jama-Coaque Posture.

and respectively you can experience from these postures: a) go to the edge of your world, b) receive guidance about health and healing, c) experience the feminine source of life and fertility, d) experience twirling in a vortex, with awareness expanding.

These statues were found a) Olmec jade carving, b) 2000 year old Adena Indian sculpture, c) 6000 year old figure found in Yugoslavia, d) Ecudorean sculpture.

She has PhD in linguistics and anthropology. Her book "Where Spirits Ride the Wind: Trance Journeys and Other Ecstatic Experiences" describes how she became involved in a project on religious trance.

The study found that, "...Seeing visions, hearing voices, and communicating with the dead--behaviours that modern psychiatry labels psychotic--are important aspects of 96 percent of the small hunting and horticulture societies that were studied.

"In these societies PEOPLE WHO CANNOT ACHIEVE RELIGIOUS ALTERED STATES OF CONSCiOUSNESS WERE CONSIDERED ABNORMAL".

So, "What's 'normal' ?" Next time anyone tells you that you are not normal, perhaps they are just saying that they are ignorant.



But, since you are in the teaching sampradaya, we do not become angry at the ignorance of others, only we try our best to have compassion for them and educate those with an open mind.

But I think it's okay to grieve a little for getting razzed about it! [smile]. Part of being human...

But after you grieve for the past,
enjoy the gifts that God Shiva has given to you, meditate on him, fill your life with uplifting thoughts, so that at the end of this life we may have union [yoga] with the Divine, in whatever form of yoga your heart resonates with the most!

Enjoy the Festival of Colors taking place inside of us right now! The beautiful astral colors of the devas in the Deva Lokas, and
Shiva's divine forms of sakti tattva [Paramesvara-Bindu, energy, light, and love] and Siva tattva [saccidananda].

Use your giftedness and talents in full confidence, be open to his revealing grace, then enjoy the ensuing peacefulness and bliss!

Aum Namah Shivaya!
Jaya Mahadeva!

Anonymous said...

Joshi Uncle ~
Pranams,

I was wondering if you have ever read the Tirumantiram. If you do google search, there is an online version on the Himalayan Academy website.

I was re-reading it today and I thought that you might enjoy it. According to this translation, some of the text is written in coded language, especially the Tantra Nine chapter.

Since you already know alot of esoteric information you might enjoy decoding it for yourself and extrapolating various meanings from it, since you enjoy that type of spiritual-intellectual exercise.

Bright Blessings ~
Aum Namah Shivaya

kavitha said...

A very Happy Holi to all of you!!! Holi Haiiii

Regds
Kavitha

JC said...

Hi S/ Sri Anon, Kavitha… ‘I’ am back ‘home’, after spending a fortnight with my grandchild, a spiritually mature infant, and also spending two days in the company of four of my five siblings.

Thanks! ‘I’ would go through the suggested item by Sri Anon and revert in due course.
Best wishes.

JC said...

Namaste Sri Anon and all others...Over the last three years ‘I’ have attempted to give the ‘satva’, the essence of Hindu Mythology, as expressed n “Satyam Shivam Sunderam” by wise ancients’, as ‘I’ have come to draw it with my ‘scientific’ background, from various stories ‘I’ have come across.
Also, one needs to keep in mind the saying, “Hari ananta/ Hari katha ananta…” That is, one will come across over one life span various view points of the same apparent phenomenon, which ‘I’ had elsewhere cited with the example of the phenomenon of ‘moths apparently committing suicide over a lighted candle’s flame’…And therefore need to reach at the essence or the ‘Absolute Truth’ out of the various apparent ‘Truths’.

Also, the essence already drawn by the ‘wise’ is indicated by the stated ‘Truth’ that that life on earth or ‘Mithya Jagat’ is all about ‘Maya’ or illusion and that the apparent physical universe itself is the ‘Ananta’ that is the unending Creator, which is a projection of the centre of our apparent earth as the ‘Nadbindu’ that is Vishnu who reclines in a state of super consciousness in the middle of the Milky Ocean, or ‘Kshir-sagar’. …And, to make the overall realization simpler for His Own Images, it was also conveyed that man is a model of the universe (infinite ‘pillar of fire’, or ‘image of God’)…The Yogis apparently attempted to reach a ‘zero thought’ stage, to reach the Absolute Truth who is related with zero time and space, for each image is realized composed of eight different images of the ‘zero’ that result in the apparent illusion of a variety of forms although each form in reality is a ‘soul’ or a form of concentrated energy that can be felt but not seen or realized through the five physical senses…

JC said...

‘We’ - the ‘present generation of students’ - generally accept division of a day on earth into 24 hours, as the apparent time taken by the planet to rotate like a top around its own axis that passes through its top and the base, which is tilted at present by 23.5 degrees with reference to the Poles, which are symbolically referred as the North and South Poles.

The majority perhaps accepts it without bothering to know how or why it was accepted by the human society at large at some given point in time.

One would, however, perhaps notice that ‘ancient Hindus’ appear to have gone a bit deeper and talked of ‘Trimurty’, Brahma-Vishnu-Mahesha, as the three aspects of the believable Creator of the physical universe. Where, Vishnu is His form at the beginning, or the base, the dot or ‘Nadbindu’ (say the South Pole where tortoise shaped Antarctica is located)); Brahma the intermediate form, represented by the globe, that is, the near sphere which is divided into 360 degrees (represented by longitudes, or big circles imagined drawn on the surface of the globe that pass throiugh the Poles); and Shiva the Mahesha as the most evolved one, represented by the North Pole, or head of the globe. The foregoing conveys apparent existence of all the three forms at all times…and they depicted passage of time and related events based on cycles consisting of 8 essences of selected members of the solar system (‘ashta-chakra’ or eight wheels, or cycles), that represent Mahashiva, while our earth - (‘that has moon on its forehead’) - represents Shiva…

The eight ‘grahas’ or the selected members of the solar system (that believably also go into human forms) could perhaps be understood to have been imagined as interacting with each other, with control resting predominantly with one member for an hour, and such three cycles, of three types of actioons, repeated three times a day to result in various combinations of resultant quantums of energy to reflect a variety of events related with the ‘panchatatvas’ that believably go into the formation of all physical forms…

JC said...

When ‘I’ look at a day, ‘I’ find that it is 'naturally' divided into three equal parts, each of duration 8 hours long. Starting from midnight as the ‘zero’ hour - covering the darkest part of night in its first half - generally could be said to be devoted to physical rest, and it is the period that apparently helps the physical body regain ‘naturally’ the energy it generally loses during the 16 hours before that. It is around 4 AM that some ‘animals’ start gradually to become active, and mostly all of them by 8 AM.

Eight hours thereafter, from 8 AM, up to 16 hours could be said to be the time for active physical actions that are apparently predominantly devoted to meet the demand of the solar plexus region, located in the middle of the body – at midday the sun is also apparently right over our heads.
Eight hours, till mid-night, after 4 PM could be said to be devoted to plan for the ‘future’, or tomorrow, and thus predominantly devoted to ‘mental actions’ that involve the human head…

JC said...

Sri Anon, With the belief that the female form basically represents the ‘superior image’, or an image nearer to the Formless - because in the male form more energy is generally converted into ‘muscles’, as it is apparently reflected in Kartikeyan, who is also called ‘Skandh’ or the right shoulder/ hand of Mother Parvati the evolved form of Kali/ Sati/ Krishna - ‘I’ have apparently been taken for a journey into my apparent past in ‘this life’…as it is generally accepted that all infants male or female generally are the true images of the Formless Creator, and ‘we’ are then spoilt as we grow older because of the company of ‘bad’ people as part of the grand design! Buddha apparently flowed in the middle channel and thus avoided the ‘extremes’…

JC said...

Hi Sri Anon, ‘I’ give below the extract from the internet, which could perhaps be seen to reflect the concept of the 'Vedantis', who apparently realized exixtence of one and only Formless Supreme Being, that is, the essence also of thirumantiram you had cited…

“1602: Truth of Hallowed Feet is End of Vedas
I treasured His hallowed Feet
In the depths of my heart;
And so, shunned the deceitful course of scorching senses,
I swam past the dangerous swirls of twin Karma,
And I tasted the nectar of Truth
-The end of all Vedas.”

Maybe a seeker of 'Truth' could visualize how the prefix ‘Shri’ to every human name, in Sanskrit (‘Thiru’ in Tamil), was generally adopted by the ‘wise ancients’ for Lakshami (the consort of Vishnu the Nadbindu represented in the physical form by bright Red colour, as reflected in Kali’s tongue as well as the red or vermillion paint used on the female feet in Bengal), as well as Ganesha (son of evolved Mother Parvati or Gouri the fair one), the ‘material’ and ‘spiritual’ aspects respectively, that is, the union of Black and White or immortal soul and the transient body. Also, ‘mantiram’ in Tamil is adopted from ‘mandiram’, a building, or exterior material human structure…thus indicating human form as a temple of the God within…

'I' might also add here that when the red molten magma of an active volcano rises to the surface of earth, it turns black when it comes in contact with air or water...and results in top soil becoming rich and fertile...The wise ancients sought the blessings of the hallowed feet of Nandi on their crown or head, that is, the Yogis attempted the energy located at the Mooladhar to rise to one point in the head, which was called activation of teh kundalini, a symbolic raising of hood by a Cobra that generally remains coiled on the ground!

JC said...

An animated sphere, the shape almost reflected by the rotating and revolving planet earth, represents the ‘Trimurty’ of Hindu Mythology. The South Pole represents the dot at the beginning or the base of churning or animation, while the North Pole represents the evolved dot at the top, or summit. And, the globe between these two extremeties is defined by the balance 8 numbers directions (related with Krishna the eighth and lucky child of Ma Devki) to completely define the globe that has 10 directions (conveyed by names, related with Treta Yuga, Dashrath/ Dashanan)…

JC said...

‘We’ also know that because of the tilt in the axis of the planet earth, the Sun, (four-faced Brahma, represented by 4 Cardinal directions, N-E-W-S, and as realized by the ‘wise ancients’ by a pyramid shape, used as ‘Vimanas’ in Indian Temples, that is, ‘airplanes’, meaning sun-like vehicles for journey by air in the sky), appears to travel North-South, between Latitudes 23.5 degrees South & North (Tropics of Capricorn and Cancer, respectively). And, advanced Yogis believably could disappear at one place to reappear at another location, because they created short-circuit by attaching themselves with the Formless who is governed by zero time and space!

JC said...

In Kaliyuga the Dark Age 'I' or my body is imprisoned by the earth for a certain duration not known to me now, but perhaps known to my soul, which 'I' am not able to recall because of being the Apsmara Purush. But, 'I' am aware that my soul is Her, and She alone knows the Truth of the apparent physical forms of the entire infinite universe...Therefore, She alone can show us the path...to Her Own abode...However, why she would do that is known only to Her!

JC said...

Although 'I' had elsewhere earlier narrated it, talking of Ma Kali/ Gauri, that is, Durga for the Bengalis, 'I' would like to repeat it in brief to indicate 'my' mental status as it apparently was in the year 1959, when our group visited Calcutta (Kolkata) during our 'educational tour’ to the east India…
As it generally happens, our group of students had a sub group comprising a smaller number - like birds of similar feathers - that generally gets formed to suit conditions, regulating it, such as travel by motor vehicles, for example. We had been accommodated in an economical lodge on one of the main roads of Cal.
On the first day, early morning, before visiting some engineering works as part of the scheduled programme, in order to know what all places were located within reasonable distances of the locality, we went to the nearby market where only a roadside restaurant was open. As it was wont to happen (in retrospect, believably as part of our ‘natural education’), when we had just posed the query, a small girl approached the shop-keeper to buy some milk. We all - the north Indians who are perhaps relatively cruder - were amused to hear the old man address the child as “Ma”!
Although my childhood was spent in the company of boys from different states, many of whom belonged to Bengal, we weren’t exposed to the typical character of the city, which generally gets reflected from the behaviour of the majority of the residents who apparently belong to that city/ state at a particular time under consideration…just as the French use the expression, “Paris de Napoleon”, indicating the city as it existed during Napoleon’s reign…

Anonymous said...

Vannakkam everyone!

Joshi Uncle,
It's fun to read all of your insights, thanks for sharing them.

I did notice that so many words from South India begin with "Tiru" as in "holy" but is nice to think could also mean "Shri" also [smile].

And interesting to think the word "Mantiram" is related to "Mandira".

Plus the many other observations that you mentioned, much food for thought...

I hope you had a nice visit with your family!

You mentioned Kartikkeya, here is a website I just discovered, you probably already know about it www.murugan.org It has some esoteric explanations as well, which you probably already know about.

***
This is a funny game recently I have been playing with a young friend. He is supposed to be doing his homework for school but he misbehaves. And even give him so many explanations why he should behave, falls on deaf ears.

Then I got the idea to pretend I have no other recourse than to invoke divine assistance. So I clasp my hands together and piously look skywards and pretend to pray [out loud],

"Dear God, please help so-and-so kid to behave and do this and that behavior, I know is impossible request: but please provide a miracle. Sincerely, Shri Anon..."

Then halfway through the prayer the kid starts behaving!!! Is very funny. I wish you could see it!

So in case your grandkids ever misbehave, you can try that strategy. Is very humorous how many "miracles" are have occuring since trying this new approach!

***
Another new thing I learned is a book I read about some of the indigenous people of British Isles who were called the Celts.

They observed the Spring Equinox by celebrating a festival called Beltane, in which they worship The Goddess, which occured about this same time of year in the old days.

***
Thanks for sharing your stories and observations Uncle, they are most interesting.

Oh! And remember you shared you went to your ancestral house and the radio switched on in the middle of the night? In some cultures, when things happen with electricity like that, they think that the Gods, Devas, ancestors--someone!--trying to get in touch with you, give a message, get a point across, or simply say Hi!


"Sadashiva is Form-Formless
In the center is He, Sadashiva
The four below are the Formed
Brahma, Vishnu, Rudra, Mahesa.

"The four above are the Formless
Bindu, Nada, Shakti, Siva
Thus are His parts ~
He the Parashiva"
--Tirumantiram, 1764

Also I really appreciate the stories Kavitha didi shared about the small lizard and spider can be seen as auspicious manifestations of the Divine. Now when I see them I say "Hi!" and not, "How in the world did you get in here?!" Now I know "how" they got there and why!

All the best ~
Have a wonderful week!
Aum Namah Shivaya

JC said...

Hi Shi Anon, Talking of ‘miracles’, ‘I’ would like to repeat what ‘I’ had earlier also cited elsewhere.

It was in the early Seventies, although she was already a two-year-old, our third daughter hadn’t started walking. She used to remain vertically seated on the floor and would move forward while seated while using her palms to push the floor. We were worried for her and one day we took her to a child specialist. He said there was no clinical problem with her, and added that some children walked when they were aged three years or so.

We waited for one more year. But, she continued in the same manner. My wife used to nag me everyday that ‘I’ wasn’t doing anything for her. One Sunday perhaps, ‘I’ impulsively told her that it was only a psychological problem with her, for when it was time for her to start walking she was suffering from stomach upset, which took quite some time for us to come to consult the right person, a RMP instead of allopaths in Govt dispensary, and some time for her to get fully cured...

‘I’ just held her under her armpits and made her to put some load on her two feet. Even ‘I’, a layman, could see that she was mortally afraid as she had grown taller such that the floor and, therefore, the expected fall looked big to her!

She kept on crying while ‘I’ kept on incessantly repeating the mantra in Hindi, meaning, “You won’t fall.” Her cries died down after some time, and at some stage she looked confident. At that time ‘I’ just slid my palms a few inches down. She was afraid and wanted to sit down but found she couldn’t because she was again held on my palms.

I moved the palms up once more. And, finally ‘I’ slid backwards a few feet on the floor. Surprised, and a little bit scared, she ran into my arms! Once her confidence was regained that very day she was walking normally, to the relief of all - apparently cured by the ‘specialist’ who resided within ‘me’! And, ‘I’ had earlier also narrated how a sage had once repeated what was recorded in my horoscope also, that is, ‘I’ would either join the army or would become a doctor, neither of which turned out true! However, ‘I’ then thought that even Jesus Christ also didn’t possess a degree in medicine and he reportedly cured blind persons and lepers (and my initials also are the same, that is, JC!)…and the Hindu Philosopy, as Meera Bai also said, indicates the same Krishna, the mischievous Formless Creator, a physician, to reside within all humans!

It is this daughter who was later responsible for introducing me to the unseen by predicting cancellation of my flight on the third (3, similar to the symbol of 'OM'!) death anniversary of my mother!

JC said...

‘I’ think ‘I’ had earlier also indicated that as per the accepted practice by ‘born Hndus’, since time immemorial, the eldest son of the parents performs their last rites as also the annual rites thereafter. Thus, being the third living child and the second son, ‘I’ was apparently liberated from those activities, more so because just before the birth of the third daughter my family had come to reside separately. Had we all been living together in the same house as before, ‘I’ too would at least have been aware of the particulars of dates etc (that are related with the lunar cycle and not with the Gregorian calendar) and would have at least seen those activities being performed by him and his wife...”Out of sight/ Out of mind!”
In view of the above-stated, and in view also of ‘my’ realization of time and related events moving backwards (as indicated by the ‘wise Hindus’) ‘I’ realized that in the Kaliyuga - the first era that appeared to us as the last of the four Yugas because of ‘maya’ or illusion – initially the sun would have ruled, for moon would then have remained yet to evolve! And, thus the day my daughter apparently predicted cancellation of my flight, ie, 8th December as per Gregorian calendar would be applicable for the annual rites of ‘my’ mother! And, Shri Anon you too have indicated the belief about mute hints from different ‘departed souls’ for communication with ‘us’ the 'souls with apparent forms'!

JC said...

Once someone starts looking apparently from a different point of view, which doesn’t belong to the ‘beaten track’, oneself one is surprised why it didn’t strike to him/ her earlier, and then how is it that others aren’t able to see what he/ she apparently sees!

In the childhood, for example, we lived in a ‘Square’ or 2 numbers C-shaped quadrangles divided by a road in the middle (that led to Ramakrishna Mission), in New Delhi, in a government colony of 18x2 (36) quarters. And, one can perhaps thus imagine a collection of about 150 children of different age groups (at the average rate of 4 per family) let out of their respective residences during spare times!

‘I’ had been promoted to class VII and had a ‘very fast friend’, one year junior to me, (whom ‘I’ last met in the early Seventies when he was going to join IIT Powai as a Professor, after completing his Ph D in bio-chemistry from USA...and, during a marriage in Mumbai two decades later my wife’s niece, whose husband also was a Professor of Mathematics, informed us that the family was their next-door neighbour at Powai! What a coincidence it was!?)...

At the start of our long summer vacations, ‘I’ went to his residence to play some games. But, he was busy solving problems in arithmetic. The logic offered by him inspired me also to bring my book and both of us thus got busy solving different exercises from our new prescribed books. It became a wonderful pastime for the two of us when at the end of the vacations both of us had already finished all the exercises in advance!
He was thus responsible for my doing better in mathematics in the higher classes also! And later when my 3rd daughter brought to me to solve some Trigonometry questions, she wondered how ‘I’ was able to solve those when three decades had already elapsed when 'I' studied that! ‘I’ told her that ‘I’ now found as if the figures in the questions themselves suggested to me the steps to be followed, and besides that ‘I’ wasn’t now afraid because of the practice ‘I’ had thanks to my friend!

Other boys and their family members used to be surprised when they saw us play together quietly, without exchange of words, and sometimes only the two us together for full one year. It was due to some misunderstanding. Finally, common friends one day acted as arbitrators and made us shake hands!

Great Year cycle said...

Wow
that was the most paralyzingly powerful summary of the quintessential experience- leaving one dead and alive at once, in terror and ecstasy, pity and wonder.

I am writing an article for scribd about The Whore of Babylon and 2012 may I use that picture of the Goddess and quote?

Su

JC said...

Hi Su, ‘I’ read your post ‘Great Year Blues’, however, the site being in German, ‘I’ couldn’t post additional comment for your information, which ‘I’ had earlier also posted elsewhere in Ms Kavitha’s blog, as given below:

‘I’ would like to point out a geological fact that ‘India’ in the beginning reportedly also was an island that was named ‘Jambudweep” (where ‘dweep’, in Sanskrit, means ‘island’). And at a certain stage apparently due to tectonic movements, the Great Himalayan Ranges emerged from the bowels of the earth. These displaced the seawater - that originally existed in the North to even flow over the original Mountain Range, named the Vindhyas, in the then island – to the Indian Ocean in the South…

And that in the ‘west’ more importance was given to our Sun (God), however in the ‘east’ selected 9 numbers members of the solar system were visualized as the ‘vital organs’ of an individual, all contained within a big ‘0’ (centre of our galaxy) representing as its model the Formless infinite universal void: Eight numbers, one each controlling one of the eight cardinal directions and the ninth, Saturn, acting as a link between all, represented by the Nervous systems, acted as the vital link between all and thus providing overall information to the brain (reflected by moon that acts as the brain that exercises overall control in humans)…