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5.10.2010

The experience of Shivahood, the state of real bliss.

The inner search for the Lord in the environs that we live in is practically impossible to keep the mind in focus towards a single goal, especially when it is not shared by anyone around us.

To work and make money is a goal we can all talk about, to buy real estate and get married are topics every one is interested in, but to talk about a spiritual goal hardly has any takers for a discussion. Yet it is a fight at some point in everyone's mind to want to know what spiritualism is.

What is illusion, inner soul and the beauty of enlightenment? What do we mean when we say these words, what are we meant to experience? Going to a temple in the city and having a glimpse of the Lord is not going to get us the answer. How do we even try to remotely get to this experience?

The only answer that hits my mind to get a glimpse of this supernatural effect is a visit to Tungnath or Mount Kailasa or some such remote place. I am sure that other places can, in some form render the same result, but a difficult trek to Tungnath or Kailasa are sure hits. Why? Because when the mind decides to do this journey it has agreed that its going to be physically challenging, it does not promise a darshan in winter and therefore time of the year matters and by the time we even get a glimpse of the destination, the mind and the body have had enough but the only energy that rules is the emotion to achieve the pilgrimage.

Let’s start from the beginning, gathering information on any of these two journeys defines that the weather may not support the trip and there is room for a flop. Just viewing pictures gives a rough indication that these treks are long and pains taking and there is hardly any help in the way. The altitude gives a feeling of distance from comfort that it results in mental detachment from all materialism, all emotion, and all attachment. The very fact that the mind decided to do this trek means that the emotions and the soul are ready to have a glimpse of this superior power.

At the foothills, before we begin the actual journey, the heart is overwhelmed that we made it this far, the mind is exhausted and can’t really entertain thoughts anymore. The difficulty now is the trek. Bleak regions, strong winds, bring the raw forces of nature close to us, so close that the familiarity of civilized life is a distant memory. Here there is only one thought - the discovery and the experience of the unknown. What stands in front of us is a snow capped mountain, cold, formidable, silent and powerful. And the only pool of resources we have is the fast diminishing reserves of energy within us. Food is brought down to the basic minimum and water may be hard to find and what’s more - money cant buy us anything here. Credit cards are a piece of junk here; because the rules that work here are very different. This is the first realization of detachment. This is also the first realization of freedom. 

As we take each step, the body begins to tire but the beauty of the region is a treat to the eye. The freedom to be in a land so bleak, the achievement to have fulfilled the wish to be here to imbibe the beauty of this land is a great feeling indeed. We can simply feel free to experience the power of this earth. How do we understand this power? Scaling these heights or even attempting to do the parikrama is a tedious effort of time, physical energy that is being squeezed out of every bone in the body to move the foot to the next step. All we have is the sheer will power to achieve this goal or overcome this challenge. We can look at it either way. Tungnath certainly doesn’t give the impression of easy enlightenment, its a difficult up slope trek that makes you, breaks you, exhausts you even before you made it to half the mark and we still do not have any sight of the temple. Kailasa parvat on the other side gives you a distant glimpse of its enormity and tells you to go home but doesn’t let you come any closer. In either case there is a realm of curiosity that is teased, the need to discover is prolonged and desire to break loose from the shackles of our existence and be one with the forces of nature can be reasonably enormous. Here too there is a strong echo of the dualism of life; this journey gives us the dual experience of frustration and spiritual bliss at the same time.

Approaching Tungnath on a winter morning

Do we ever get to feel this power? When we are exhausted and look up to the great temple or the mountain peak itself, the mind is blank and there is a sense of achievement to have reached or completed the trek. The minds eye now opens up to the forbidding reality in front of us. The world is at our feet, civilization is a distant reality and all that there is now is the Mountain and me. The first glimpse up close brings no thoughts to the mind, no words to the mouth, no fears to the heart and no pain to the body. The result of feeling this power is the feeling of being small and weep, weep like a baby full of emotion, and just pour out this overwhelming feeling into a pool of tears that are probably the most beautiful pearls of enlightenment we could generate selflessly. Just weeping into a pool of overwhelming love and emotions rolling out towards the power of the unknown is the most strangely blissful moment we can hold on to. If we felt this emotion at the moment of death, I guess we would be blessed with immortality.

The whole trek becomes a selfless journey of love, a churn of the mind and the body as it works its way up the spiritual grind of churning out the self from within. This emotion that floats to the surface of oneself is described very beautifully in a verse written by Thirumular.

Lord stands as Ghee in milk

He is Mukti, Jnana and Nada
That in the three branches of knowledge resound [poetry, music and dance]
Thus they praise the Lord
Through time unending;
As the ghee within milk
The pure one within them stands
That light they seek not and love not [2115]


Just as ghee belongs to the essence of milk, it floats on the surface of the milk untouched and unmoved. It is pure and concentrated and yet it doesn’t dissolve into the depths of the milk itself. Similarly the emotion of joy and supreme bliss that is felt on getting the closest view and discovering the Lord at these sacred shrines is an extraction from the process of churning the body, mind and emotions to reveal that we possess it. Once its out it floats of the surface of the milk of our existence, of our conscious self it is there to be experienced in all its purity and when it is experienced, what results is a tear of the overwhelming emotion of love.

11 comments:

JC said...

Happiness, or even bliss, is a state of mind only!

Thanks to the available information through our 'wise' ancestors, anyone, anywhere, could perhaps visualise every human being as a model of the ever expanding universal void, and thus ever growing lone immortal being who, in fact, is a point that, like a powerful magnet, has its influence extending up to infinity!

And, 'I' happen to be one of His vital organs, His third eye, say, that alone can perceive the 'Truth' of Self that is Him!

JC said...

Maybe, 'I' should add that 'His Third Eye', in human form, is located at 'Ajna Chakra', therefore, 'I' must lift total energy/ information from 'Mooladhar' to that level, between the eye-brows, crossing before that the cause of 'Maya' that is illusion, or 'Vishuddhi Chakra, located at the throat level,,,or just surrender 'myself' in Him and let 'Krishna' do it as He has so kindly offered to everyone irrespective of one's sex, faith, creed and so on (vide the Gita)!

kalpana sashidharan said...

''...the emotion of joy and supreme bliss that is felt ... discovering the Lord ...is an extraction from the process of churning the body, mind and emotions to reveal that we possess it. Once its out it floats of the surface of the milk of our existence, of our conscious self it is there to be experienced in all its purity and when it is experienced, what results is a tear of the overwhelming emotion of love.''
Exquisitely described!Thank you.

JC said...

Yes, since time immemorial the 'Hindus', have understood our galaxy as the 'Milky Way Galaxy'. And indicated it to have 'Krishna' (the super gravity Black Hole) as the churner at its centre, and based on advance scientific knowledge also, had related it in stories with the particular cowboy in human form as the model of the supreme soul, in Dwaper yuga itself. Of course, after Shiva, being the only immortal one capable to do so in the beginning, had held the deadly poison in His throat and had thus allowed both selfless and selfish humans, (or hot and cold members of the solar system to also sustain thanks to amrit granted to them too), and as their models the mortal gopas and gopis or milk-maids to churn out 'cream' from the milk...And the practice of popularising Krishna's stories is now continued by members of the ISKCON also, besides many other Gurus, but perhaps themselves generally being unaware of the background knowledge of the Formless, as original creator and the truth of the lila as resulting from 'maya' or illusion, stated in calling the world as 'mithya jagat', ie, there is no Tungnath or Kailash existing in the 'present' and it being a thing of the 'past'! And hance the significance of Bhootnath Shiva, the Sypreme Soul as Mahakal or controller of apparent time, whereas time and space in reality are zero!

JC said...

'I' might also add that like Sunlight is known to contain 7 colours in the visible spectrum, cow's milk too has 7 major components: Water, Protein, Fat, Carbohydrates, Water soluble Vitamins, Fat soluble Vitamins, and Minerals...

JC said...

The 'wise' ancient 'Hindus' realised the human body to have been constructed from seven 'rasas' or essences that are related with colours that are associated with some heavenly body and corresponding gemstone, eg, fats associated with yellow colour (Golden Topaz, or Yellow Sapphire) and heavenly body Moon; muscles (proteins) associated with green colour (Emerald), with the background knowledge that brain and heart both are muscle computer and muscle pump respectively...

JC said...

The difficult part to comprehend or visualise in the 'Hindu thought' is the concept of Bhootnath or Mahakal Shiva who is related with time and space zero and yet is believed to see, within zero time the events related with creation in the past, during apparent time! A reflection of which is 'our' capacity to see events over expanded time in 'action replays' of events that happen instantaneously! And, we have no problem enjoying films, the characters who acted in which might not exist in the 'present'. Thus in fact we have no problem in seeing ghosts and yet disbelieving in them because of 'maya'!

charan said...

Hi Jc sir, this is kumar, i am one of the old members..

just one doubt please.....What you tried to tell in your fourth comment?could you please be more specific?

JC said...

Hi Shri Kumar! Glad to hear from you again!

'My' fourth comment perhaps is regarding the seven components of milk??

That was mainly to indicate the trend the 'wise' ancients appear to have noticed in 'Nature' or earth that reflect the general design pattern: the seven seas, seven continents, seven colour in white sunrays, and so on.

Maybe one could perhaps notice similarity in the high percentage of obviously the most important component of human body as well as cow's milk, i.e., life-giving 'water', or one of the 'panchtatvas' that go into the formation of all physical forms...

And also one knows that when milk is churned, fat or cream gets separated and being lighter floats on top of the relatively heavier water...And our galaxy is called 'Milky Way Galaxy' since time immemorial perhaps because it contains innumerable stars, source of milk-like white sunrays...and one could notice that our Solar system is contained within our galaxy near the galaxy's periphery, just as cream moves towards the outer periphery of a centrifuge, and could perhaps related it with Krishna the cowboy...

charan said...

hi jc sir, thanks for the reply,
can i have your gmail id , i have many doubts i want to share with you.....

JC said...

Hi Shri Kumar, You are welcome. My gmail Id is jc.benu@gmail.com