10.04.2010

Analogy of the Tree of Life

The Tree of Life was first planted by Asoka as the backbone on which his edicts were inscribed, a code of conduct that engraved the principles of dharma presented for evolved living to the common man. Back then, the earth was dug open ceremoniously with great honor and respect, and a pot with pure water was laid inside it signifying the cosmic ocean over which this great stone edict was hoisted. With this started a new beginning, faith was reborn and the principles of good living were declared to the masses.

This was how Asoka had envisioned it, during the birth of the Buddhist era. The pot signifies the constant presence of the cosmic ocean, undying and enriching, sustaining all of life that flourishes across this land. This principle never died and through these ages, it took shape in different ways across regions. Hinduism adopted the essence of this principle, and extended the philosophy of water cosmology not just into its temples and art forms but into is life style and ritual as well.

Temples boasted this principle along their walls. The Bhiti [walls] was an elaborate canvas that displayed great Gods in their iconic representations seated or standing within their niches. The tree of life has been depicted as an elaborate decorative pot oozing with the cosmic waters supporting all of life, life that was blessed by the divine parent Lord Shiva and Parvati. These pillared examples, depicted deities as well as architectural structures that rose out of this pot of cosmic water.

Ritual brings out this very same principle by representing all of divinity in the sacred waters of the pot that is the main deity, pulsating with life during the course of the ritual. The Kalasha, brimming with sacred water, capped by mango leaves, signifying the king of all trees, holds a coconut in the center which in reality holds water within itself, signifying the larger principle of the tree of life rising out of its natural cosmic waters. 


These various representations of the tree of life, celebrate the miracle of life in Hindu mythology as the birth of Brahma in the center of tender lotus petals that bloom out of the navel of Lord Vishnu who floats in the cosmic ocean. This deep rooted law of life, curiously depicted by Lord Vishnu and Brahma is a representation of life as we see it in reality within the womb of the mother. The womb is the shell within which lies the cosmic waters, self generated miraculously by Shakti to house the unborn, the pulsating tree of life that is floats in this ocean, sustained by the lotus stem of the umbilical chord.

And then... the pot breaks, transitioning life from one realm into the next. The waters of the sacred Kalasha are sprinkled all over the house and its respective family members, as it soaks them in its divine blessings and transitions them to evolved living symbolically. In reality, the mother delivers her new born into this world transitioning it towards the next realm amidst much pain.

But all pots breaking may not result in happy endings, though they depict transition from one realm to a different realm. This is another journey to be done, another transition to be crossed. When life has come its full way, and all the waters of life drain out of the physical body, what remains behind is the corpse that awaits it final journey. Be it burial or be it cremation, the dead lie facing north/south and the final rites are performed.

Three rounds of circum-ambulation depict the transition of consciousness from one state to the next. With each round, a hole is punched into an unburnt earthen pot that releases this precious cosmic water that flows out gently around the dead, signifying the cosmic ocean at the center of which they lie asleep, awaiting to be woken up into the next realm. With the third hole punched, all of the cosmic waters are released, signifying the opening of the third eye of the dead for an enlightening journey ahead to the next world. With this life in our reality moves on and the pot now empty is broken to transition the soul to the next realm.

This journey doesn’t end here, for it is blessed with the glorious representation of the inner truth of the immortality of life, celebrating the journey of the soul in the presence of the trinity at this hour. A simple earthen clay pot carries much significance in the ritual representation of this transition of the soul, be it in the echoes of the sacred Asoka edicts or be it the loud cries of a mother in labor, life is born again.

Also of interest:

Photo courtesy: Kerala Murals

22 comments:

Bart said...

There are in Sanskrit actually three words to point out such a holy water vessel as we are meaning here, often preceded by the prefix ‘purna’ = ‘full’; the three terms are: purnakalasha, purnaghata and purnakumbha. I believe that all these three terms, with or without ‘purna’ are freely exchangeable and all can be used to indicate this extreem old symbol, in use by Jainism, Buddhism and Hinduism, and many other religions outside the Indian cultural territory. Probably this symbol is as old as long as the mankind is able to produce ceramics, and archaeologists have dated the oldest uncovered human-made ceramics back to at least 24.000 BCE, so during the Upper Palaeolithic. Can we make perhaps a useful distinction between the kalasha, the ghata and the kumbha? Let’s give it a try, starting with the last one.

Kumbha refers to the vessel filled with nectar, which emerged during the churning of the Milk Ocean of Creation, at the very same time as the vessel with halahala appeared. Actually this is already a clear sign that the kumbha as a word for this vessel belongs to the circle of myths around Lord Shiva. The present-day Saint of Kerala, Amma, is wearing the spiritual name of Sri Mata Amritanandamayi Devi. ‘Amritanandamayi’ or ‘the bliss of immortality in me’ refers clearly to this vessel, the kumbha filled with amrita. Knowing that Amma’s devotees are considering their guru as a purnavatari of Mata Kali fits wonderful with this name. If we like to belief that Lord Shiva is the final Victor over the Death, then of course the Vessel filled with the Drink of Immortality has to be considered as a representation of his Power, his Might, his Shakti.

The ghata of purnaghata refers to something else the immortality, namely abundance. Professor Anna L. Dallapiccola is calling the ‘purnaghata’ in her ‘Dictionary of Hindu Lore and Legend’, which I have counselled for this subject: “the Vase of Plenty. An auspicious motive consisting of a vase filled with foliage, flowers and fruit.” In western (Greek) mythology we know that vase of plenty as the horn of plenty, the cornucopia. The original depictions were of a goat horn filled with fruit and flowers. It is the attribute of the goddess Fortuna (Lat.)/Tyche (Gr.), the goddess of Good Luck. Very similar to Lakshmi, who Sanskrit name means in the context of the Vedas: luck, happiness. Yes, the purnagatha is obiviously the symbol of Devi Lakshmi, goddess of wealth and as Sri, the goddess of harvest as well. Finally represents goddess Lakshmi of course our planetary goddess Mother Earth, the Vedic Prithvi. She is the source of all material wealth; she is the source of fertility; she, Earth, is well considered a holy water-container, just as our own bodies, made from her, are: watercontainers, existing for around the 60% of our weight of water.

Did we have related thus the kumbha to Shiva, and the ghata more or less to Vishnu, would we can find then the term kalasha related to Brahma? Yes according to Anna Dallapiccola indeed. So I will quote her lemma ‘kalasha’ entirely: “Kalasha, ‘ewer; ‘pitcher’; ‘waterpot’. One of the most important symbols of Indian culture. In ancient times the kalasha symbolized the universe; Brahma, for instance carries a kalasha in his hand, represented the earth as the container and nourisher of all things.” I know a better reason to carry a kalasha in his hand, for Brahma is the priest amongst the gods and his kalasha is his vessel with holy water (tiryodaka). But still can have this kalasha the ancient meaning of the universe. In that case Brahma’s Kalasha must represent the womb of Adita, the unlimited One, the One without boundaries, the personification of the Infinity, from whom everything, everybody and everyone came finally to existence.

Kavitha said...

Hello Bart,

Interesting indeed. Just one point, Brahma carries a Kamandal, its a little different from a Kalash. It has a handle and carries water and it typically in the possession of ascetics. Brahma, carries this vessel.

JC said...

Hi Kavitha and Bart, nice interpretation of words related with different vessels that hold water, or/ rather 'life giving' water as it applies to humans...

Perhaps like 'me', a student of Civil Engineering, or 'science', would also have come to learn today, he/ she could visualise earth as the basic holder of a variety of water-bodies: the seas that hold 'marine life'; lakes and ponds for fresh water fish etc; rivers that hold waters that flow back to the seas in different channels that form the network of rivers and streams, and concerns most of all to us humans, as majority of our day-to-day requirement is met by these - although it's a small %age of the entire rainwater that comes down upon 'earth' from the 'sky' during the monsoon season...And one knows how it is thanks to the interaction between earth or land (Shiva), seawater, air, atmosphere or 'sky', and heat or energy provided by Sun (Brahma) through sunlight that the life-giving water cycle is set up annually...Also one has come to know how moon (Parvati) has evolved from earth itself and thus can be considered as a part or image of earth itself, and Hindus related water on earth with Moon that reflects the poornaghat etc as in the essential form, on fullmoon night,,, attaining it starting from zero or newmoon, the reflection of Nadbindu or Vishnu, like the original seed (beejmantra, om), the 'mooladhar' or root of a tree that's responsible for 'sahastradhra' or 'thousand seeds' within fruits as its images on top of trees (head in animals)...

abhilash warrier said...

Did not know this aspect of the Tree of Life.

Is there any connection between this and the Banyan tree?

Also, there is also a Tree of Sorrow in mythology, right? Are there any parallels? Forgot where I read about this one.

JC said...

'Ghat' perhaps conveys earthen pitchers that were used in the early stages of evolution,,,which conveyed short life, although it helped in natural cooling of its contents through the process of osmosis and evaporation, and thus sustenance of coolness in the drinking water retained through the day for that purpose in the hot climate in north India, particularly (and Shiva depicted having Moon and river Ganga on His forehead, as a cool headed personality),...

With advancement in technology, vessels (kalash) made out of different metals resulted in the longevity of the container(s), but inability to store in it naturally cooled water as was possible with clay...

In 'Hindu' mythological stories, 'Krishna' the mischievous boy, 'Nandlal', is depicted to have playfully broken earthen pitchers carried by maids of Brindavan, with stones, to communicate in symbolic language the fact of life, birth followed by death considered as part of the process of evolution from mortality (mrityu) to immortality of soul (amrit) as the goal of 'churning of the milky-ocean' (to reach the cream, just as our galaxy is called 'Milky Way Galaxy' that holds our solar system towards its outer periphery, like the centrifuge holds cream towards its outer periphery when milk is churned, and thus perhaps similar consideration in the stories of Krishna as a cowboy,,, and one lerns today that our galaxy holds a super gravity Black Hole in its centre!)...

JC said...

In the Bhagawadgita, man has been indicated as an 'inverted tree' whose roots are in the sky...This seems to have been reflected by Yogis by considering human form made from the essences, mainly of nine members of the solar system, from Sun (the main source of energy, at the solar plexus) to Saturn (as the planet is also called 'suryaputra'), the heavenly bodies that are floating in the space or 'sky' together with earth-moon as the most important member that not only provide support and all material for our sustenance, but also provides protection to devtas (selfless persons) from 'evil forces' too, as Parvati is also called Durga, ie, literally a fort!

Human form is thus considered formed of two ghatas, one containing the parts of essences of earth (Ajna chakra) & moon (Sahasrara chakra) in the head,,, and the lower body, as the inferior one that contains essences of six others (from Venus at the throat to Mars at the mooladhar, or tail-bone end), whereas the ninth one is related with essence of Saturn, in the form of the network related to the nervous systems, acts as the link between the two ghatas,,,and which alone could help lift the essences in the lower ghata to the top one for the 'required fruit to ripen', ie, realisation of Absolute Truth...Whereas, in case of trees or plant life, this process of water making reach the essential elements to the leaves from roots (in order for the sun to cook the required food for the entire plant, the three Brahma-Vishnu-Mahesh- like components of it, ie, the leaves, stem and roots) happens 'naturally', and the fruits or the surplus food, under normal conditions, appears at the generally expected time for a given plant,,,and the different plants exhibit characteristic properties (good and bad) that reflects the grand hierarchy that exists in 'Nature' in all its aspects...Banyan tree, with its numerous roots that result in difficulty in reaching the original root perhaps is also seen in the reflection of spread of Buddhism, although originally from India, but being sustained in some other countries in the 'present' (perhaps just as the Homo sapiens today are believed to have originated from Africa, while the Hindu stories indicate the origin in India at Kashi/ Kailash-Mansarovar)...

JC said...

In the Bhagawadgita, man has been indicated as an 'inverted tree' whose roots are in the sky...This seems to have been reflected by Yogis by considering human form made from the essences, mainly of nine members of the solar system, from Sun (the main source of energy, at the solar plexus) to Saturn (as the planet is also called 'suryaputra'), the heavenly bodies that are floating in the space or 'sky' together with earth-moon as the most important member that not only provide support and all material for our sustenance, but also provides protection to devtas (selfless persons) from 'evil forces' too, as Parvati is also called Durga, ie, literally a fort!

JC said...

Contd.

Human form is thus considered formed of two ghatas, one containing the parts of essences of earth (Ajna chakra) & moon (Sahasrara chakra) in the head,,, and the lower body, as the inferior one that contains essences of six others (from Venus at the throat to Mars at the mooladhar, or tail-bone end), whereas the ninth one is related with essence of Saturn, in the form of the network related to the nervous systems, acts as the link between the two ghatas,,,and which alone could help lift the essences in the lower ghata to the top one for the 'required fruit to ripen', ie, realisation of Absolute Truth...Whereas, in case of trees or plant life, this process of water making reach the essential elements to the leaves from roots (in order for the sun to cook the required food for the entire plant, the three Brahma-Vishnu-Mahesh- like components of it, ie, the leaves, stem and roots) happens 'naturally', and the fruits or the surplus food, under normal conditions, appears at the generally expected time for a given plant,,,and the different plants exhibit characteristic properties (good and bad) that reflects the grand hierarchy that exists in 'Nature' in all its aspects...Banyan tree, with its numerous roots that result in difficulty in reaching the original root perhaps is also seen in the reflection of spread of Buddhism, although originally from India, but being sustained in some other countries in the 'present' (perhaps just as the Homo sapiens today are believed to have originated from Africa, while the Hindu stories indicate the origin in India at Kashi/ Kailash-Mansarovar)...

Bart said...

Thanks Kavitha, for this improvement of my contribution. But it was Dallapiccola whom I was quoting with her lemma of ‘Kalasha’ in her dictionary. And let us realize that when the kalasha can be an object representing the creation, then it couldn’t be wrong to associate it with the creator Brahma. On the other hand Dallapiccola gives you indeed entirely right about the ‘kamandal’ as well. So let me quote that lemma as well:

“Kamandalu: ‘vessel, water jar’, especially the spouted water jar of the ascetics. Generally it denotes ascetism. However, when the kamadalu contains amrita, it is connected with immortality. It is an attribute of a number of deities, such as Brahma, Sarasvati, Shiva, Varuna and the river goddess Ganga.”

This lemma is illustrated with a drawing of a kamandalu; and indeed it looks like a vase with a handle at the top and a spout at the front. It seems me a very useful thing as a flagon to fill a kalasha without the risk of spilling one single drop of holy water or an amritabindu. And perhaps this quality of non-spilling is connected to the ascetic lifestyle, which implies a non-wasting of time and energy to trivial activities or things of just a temporary and transient nature.

Speaking about the oldest earthen pitchers – the ghatas, JC, we must realize that this very early craft of pottery has bestowed our ancestors a very primitive but not quiet wrong theory about the working of creation, for those earthenware products were indeed a mixture of all the five elements: Earth (clay), Water (to make the clay plastic), Air (drying), Fire (heating) and Space (the cavity inside the form).

In the very same pre-historic time one has discovered the art of making dishes of vessels of earthenware, one must have also discovered the art of making figurines of very same material. Most of the oldest earthenware idols we have found are obviously dedicated to the Mother-Goddess, possible directly depicting Mother Earth – where the material to make it was taken from. In Southern India it seems to be so that the caste of the potters has Mata Kali under the name of Kell Mari of Kau Mari as their Guardian Deity.

Speaking here about kalashas, ghatas, kumbhas and kamandulas it would be appropriate to spend also some word to the Goddess of the Potters. Kali’s name has been derived from ‘kala’, ‘time’, ‘era’, ‘season’ yes, Kali’s great name has even been conserved in two western terms related to time - a word and a name; calendar and Kleio, the ancient Greek Muse of History. Kali is the Goddess Time, and time is the final destroyer of everything temporary and transient.
But the very same word in Sanskrit काल (kãla) could also mean ‘clay’ and is even in an etymological way related to this word and Mari could be derived from from the Sanskrit मातृ (mãtr).

Now I wonder could this name Kell Mari, the Goddess of the Potters, perhaps literally mean ‘Clay Mother’, for that would be indeed a very adequate description of such a more that 20,000 old little earthenware idol of the Great Mother Goddess. Maybe that the turning of the potters wheel has inspired the ancestors to realize that she must be the Goddess of times as well. We need to realize that Mother Earth, in het rotation around her axis and her spinning in her orbit around the sun is indeed the creator of our notion of time.

JC said...

Hi kavitha & Bart, although the Hindu mytholgical stories primarily make interesting reading for the common man (without even their attempting to go to the depth and, for example, not bothering what "Yashoda saw the universe in child Krishna's mouth" really meant!). They, on the other hand, make very intersting reading for the 'seeker of Truth' when one is able to read them between the lines, particularly with reference to the evolved language, Sanskrit, for example, where one learns that 'graha' means both planet (member of the solar system) and also crocodile for instance ('magarmachchha' the fish as the first evolved animal form of Vishnu, whose firm grip is conveyed through the story of "Gaja and Graha", when it firmly catches the foot of an elephant who requires Vishnu Himself to free it, when prayed!). Also, earth that acts as the common abode of innumerable life forms, and is called one of the 'grahas', with a slight variation, 'griha' means the abode of a human family...

And, human form is believed to have 8 chakras ('chakra' meaning a wheel, used in vehicles, or potter's wheel etc, like a galaxy is, in appearance, and has a super gravity black hole at its centre that could convey sudershan chakra of Krishna or Vishnu etc; and cycle of time is kaal chakra) or energy centres as essences of 8 planets that hold energy as well as information related with 'creation' that all need to be lifted up to the head for realisation of Absolute Truth or 'enlightenment'...

Bart said...

Hi JC,

The myth which narrates that mother Yashoda has seen once the entire universe in the mouth of her son Krishna, has, according to me, the meaning to make us listeners and/or readers clear that Lord Krishna was already completely enlightened - or being One with the Brahman - when He was a little baby. The universe has been created by the word of God, however we would like to call this creator, in most of the religions of the world. So of course the universe came forth out of the mouth of the creator. In the myths around Lord Brahma, He would have create the entire universe by speaking out the four Vedas for the very first time. Brahma's Shakti is Lady Sarasvati, and she is considered to be in the first place the Goddess of the Voice, Vak Devi; next to learning, wisdom, music, arts and so on.

In that beautiful painting, which illustrates Kavitha's article, we can see how Lord Brahma is sitting in the lotus which grows from Lord Narayana's navel. If we consider that Lotus, --stem and flower, with Lord Brahma on top--, as a representation of the Tree of Life we are speaking about, then devoted Vaishnavas like you my dear JC, should actually immediately recognize the kalasha as a clear symbol of Lord Patmanabha's navel.

By the way: navels always remind us to our mother, with whom we all were once connected by our umbilical cords. In Lord Vishnu's case his holy navel reminds us to Lady Aditi, the Mother Goddess, who represents the Infinity; and in my first contribution to this subject I already have stated that the Kalasha could be a symbol of Her, as the symbol of the universe.

In Bible the very first words of the Creator-God is: "Let there be light" The Adityas, sons of Aditi and all being divine sources of light in all its forms, appear to me the response on this calling to presence. Even from a scientific point of view, light must be indeed the oldest phenomenon within our physical universe.

JC said...

Hi Bart, Thanks! The ancients posed to the seekers the question: Who am I? And the answers suggested by some wise ancients is "Aham Brahmasmi"/ "Shivoham". However they suggested every soul to reach the answer on one's own, as there are many paths to reach the same goal as reflected by our globe (say to reach the North Pole, the head, from the South Pole, the tail)...where a formless soul is indicated as a three-in-one entity that reflects the riple function of creation, sustenance, and destruction (for transformation), and together reflect the apparent attainment of infinity starting from zero, as the universe is related with time and space zero, and therefore soul is indicated as unborn and unending...

JC said...

To reach the Absolute Truth that's related with space and time zero, the seekers of truth (as present day scientists also apparently seek afresh starting from scratch), Yogis aparently attempted reaching a thoughtless stage through reguar 'meditation',,, an exercise which basically envisages reaching minimum thoughts first, through the five hasic physical apparatuses, or five generally accepted physical senses of Sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch.

However, the 'sixth sense'** that apparently is basically needed for perfection or reaching the truth, as it is believed absolute only in the case of Shiva, ie, essence of planet earth at 'Ajna Chakra', is indicated almost dormant in average persons (naturally in any yuga other than Sat yuga, that's related with Shiva), although its existence is felt at inervals in certain characters as ESP...

**Kartikeya, first son of Shiva-Parvati (the couple indicated as Earth-Moon), ie, Venus is indicated 'six handed', which, in fact, as per Yogis relates to essence of planets other than earth-moon, out of 8 numbers believed concentrated at different chakras, Mars, at mooladhar, to Venus at the throat (essences that flll the lower ghata)...

JC said...

Man as an inverted tree was virtually confirmed by Carl Sagan (in a TV serial Cosmos) when he said, to the effect, that as a result of different cycles during evolution one chromosome became man and another tree. Thus we are cousins! Also, we are complementary to each other for we breathe in Oxygen and release Carbon Dioxide, which the trees use as food and release Oxygen!

Carbon Dioxide and Oxygen are gases, or parts of 'air', which according to wise ancients, besides four others, is an important 'element' for creation of physical forms anywhere in the universe.

JC said...

Today we have come to know that innumerable galaxies, having a grand variety, fill the mahashunya or the infinite and ever expanding universal void (the Dark or Krishna space),,, and that our galaxy, called Milky Way Galaxy since ages, is a mature one, like a disc that is thick at the centre, and thin at the edges as it would have appeared in the early stages of evolution.

The Hindu mythological stories describe evolution of our galaxy in four stages through the story of 'churning of the kshirsagar', ie, ‘milky-ocean’ obviously because it comprises innumerable stars as the original source of milky-white sunrays, whose essence is believably represented by our Sun as the main source of direct and indirect energy on earth that mainly concerns us as it is the Provider of habitat as well as food for sustenance of life basically through the eternal water cycle thanks to the interaction between the panchbhootas, or literally the five ghosts (bhootas, with Shiva, ie, as the Bhootnath or Lord of the Past that was indicated as the centre of our universe by ancient wise) since over 4 billion years as the estimated age in the present, ie, Kaliyuga that appears over 1000 times during one day in the unending life of Brahma, the creator!

JC said...

Shiva the immortal energy or supreme soul is called Bhootnath who is apparently reviewing eternally His own past from the peak stage of evolution or the evolved stage at the end of Satyuga (reflected by Kailash), in the reverse order of churning, from Satyuga to Kaliyuga over 1000 times during a day in the life of the Sun (or Brahma who needs to sleep at intervals, to recover lost energy, just as its reflection man or animals need sleep at the end of a day), having started alone at Kashi and spent youth in the Narmada valley, the river believably having appeared from His sweat that flowed from the pond at Amarkantak (which together with Kailash and Kashi lies at the same longitude)!

JC said...

It's well known today that since time immemorial not only man but inferior animals also experience the occurrence of dreams while they are apparently asleep. With the apparent perfection of the art of projection of recorded films on the screen by man in the 'present', the phenomenon is likely to have also attracted the attention of the wise ancients. And thus the concept of 'maya' that is illusion created by the supreme soul that is related with time and space zero, as the reality...

The ancient Yogis, through realisation after apparently reaching a near thoughtless stage, reached the conclusion that the creator, or Parambrahma the three-in-one god, was beyond time - as we apparently reckon it based on apparent relative motions of sun and earth! And that He was unborn and unending, a formless being, they called Nadbindu, a point source of infinite sound energy that seeks to perhaps reach His own origin in His mind, through the eyes of various imaginary 'life forms'!

JC said...

'I' have earlier also elsewhere suggested visualising the truth of evolution through one's own photos from birth onwards, till date. Each picture is one's own, ie, it's 'I' in all pictures at different apparent ages (reckoned from say my time and date of birth as per IST), and 'I' appear different in each, grown bigger in size with passage of time...

We are given to understand that all forms are images of the same God! That reduces to whether can 'I' look different at the same instance of time? For which 'I' would have to consider myself viewing myself in different 'magical mirrors' ('i' personally saw first time in a fete in the childhood) placed around me which show my different images in each based on the design of mirrors being different from one to another!

JC said...

Hi Bart, earth (illusory or 'Mithya jagat' in the words of the ancients), or rather its centre to 'me' is the 'Padmnabh' referred by the wise ancients, as it was also indicated by the ancient Hindu astronomers as the centre of the universe, or the navel that is apparently connected with Brahma or Sun (as the source of apparent energy that acts as the source for the projection of images that are responsible for the illusion) and all the members of the solar system that are linked through their respective gravitational forces which are dependent directly on the product of their respective masses and inversely to the square of their distances...

JC said...

Yogis, that is ancient 'seekers of truth', or souls relatively closer to the supreme soul, were/ are characters who are revealed more and more truths, which according to the ancient wise 'Hindus' are events that are apparently not dependent on time, as we reckon it over a long duration. For example, the truth of us terrestrials viewing the sun rising every day in the 'east' and setting in the 'west',,,and, of course, looking at the innumerable aspects the 'Nature' apparently reflects, these would result in innumerable such truths from different view-points depending on location and time ("Hari anant/ Hari katha ananta" in the words of ancients and "Old order changes/ Yielding place to new" etc). We are apparently also aware that the advanced Vedic Era ended towards the 6th century BC, snd one saw the rise of Buddhism and Jainism etc in 'India',,,and it was realised by the Yogis that with the passage of time events reflected were related to deterioration of human virtue, ie, the efficiency of human being reduced in four stages from Satyuga to Kaliuga, from 100% to zero (0), and the cycle got repeated over 1000 times during over 4 billion terrestrial years...This period was called one Day in the life of Brahma, that was followed by His night of an equal duratin...

JC said...

In the present also we are aware that the earth moves from one ice-age to another, when life is virtually frozen,,,and as per ancient Hindus, at the end of Brahma's Day and the beginning of His night souls get frozen that get reactivted from that stage when another Day starts in the unending life of Brahma...

The above might help visualise how life forms apparently enter in to evolutionary cycles as per some prhaps predetermined order, as indicated by Yogis, as 'Krishna' indicates Himself as the real doer, and Arjuna-like human characters, need realisation of the truth in order to play their role whole-heartedly (and therefore the advice to remain unmoved in happiness/ sadness, cold/ hot all stages of life (difficulot to achieve by an average person)...

JC said...

Analogically, just as a tree has its roots underground, deeper according to its height and weight, a building also similarly has its foundation underground...

Different floors above the ground surface reflect the different branches,,, and the residents the (mobile) flowers and fruits, that for a tree represent the surplus food that is physically attached to it, and is cooked in the leaves (its kitchen) thanks to the 'sky' providing the space, while Sun (Brahma) provides the energy ('fire')...