94. hrIMkArapUjyA

Ravisankar S. Mayavaram msr at ISC.TAMU.EDU
Mon Jul 13 17:58:32 CDT 1998

94. hrIMkArapUjyA

SHE is to be worshipped with hrIM.  It is said that a deity should be
worshipped with the mUlamantra and the mUlamantra is not different from
the deity. Hence, SHE should be worshipped with hrIM.

A devotee, meditating on hrIM will become perfected in mantrashAstra.
Certain secret Agamas state, that when worshipping shrIchakra, one should
use hrIM in the beginning and namaH in the end, with other bIjAs according
to the tradition of their guru.

SHE is fond of hrIMkAra and hence SHE should be worshipped with hrIM.

AUM hrIMkArapUjyAyai namaH

>From  Mon Jul 13 19:17:02 1998
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Date: Mon, 13 Jul 1998 19:17:02 -0400
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From: Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian <ramakris at EROLS.COM>
Subject: Re: pUja
Comments: To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
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sadananda wrote:

> The rest of my post actually justifies why the lack of interest too!

Not just that, you seem pretty contemptuous of karma itself, as you

> rituals nor I care to know about them since my mind is not tuned to that
> type.

The phrase "that type", which is always used in a derogatory sense,
clearly shows that you will not accept any statement from shruti or
smR^iti about karma. So, I wasn't planning to reply to your mail
originally because of this. But as it happened it lead to some confusion
about chitta shuddhi etc (incorrect at least according to my
understanding) which is the sole reason I replied.

> I see in this and in the subsequent posts that you have lot of
> disagreements with my post.  I will certainly read them and contemplate on
> them.  Thanks for your detailed input.

Illustrations should clearly explain the situation, only in the case of
brahman it falls short since brahman is beyond words.

There is no point in saying "Let us agree to disagree" etc, since it's
not of any use in discussion. I have had the opportunity to re-examine
and correct myself on various issues, eg on sannyAsa on which Anand
wrote several posts, and am thankful for that. If there is a specific
point which is incorrect, it would be good to point it out instead of
some general statement like "Let's agree to disagree and so on".


PS: My good friend Krishna Kumar informs me that I seemed
"condescending" in some mail/mails. Obviously there was no such
intention. I guess when speaking, some facial expressions etc show the
real intention whereas in e-mail that is missing. Unfortunately it will
take a drastic change in writing style for me and think it'll take a lot
of time. So I hope I will be given some leeway on that!

>From  Mon Jul 13 21:16:34 1998
Message-Id: <MON.13.JUL.1998.211634.0400.>
Date: Mon, 13 Jul 1998 21:16:34 -0400
Reply-To: ramakris at erols.com
To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
        <ADVAITA-L at TAMU.EDU>
From: Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian <ramakris at EROLS.COM>
Subject: Re: pUja
Comments: To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
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Vaidya N. Sundaram wrote:

>  I fully understand the importance of the proper leraning of the
> methodologies and the proper reasons for doing a karma.

Then we are completely in agreement then :-).

> the auspicies of His Holiness, when He explained in brief, the importance
> of such religious acts, for the welfare of the public all over the world.

Important also to do it correctly. I am sure he meant that.

>  Can I (or you) or any one else claim that this is the sole reason for
> some misfortune? It seems strange and even harping on the so called

No we can't assert that it is the sole reason. However we do know that
smR^iti talks about harmful effects due to performance of a karma
wrongly. So if the karma is _not_ performed, then those bad effects
cannot occur. Unless of course, the karma happens to be enjoined.

Example, Sri Chakra pUjA is not enjoined on everyone. However the texts
clearly mention dire consequences if it is wrongly performed. Hence it
is better not to do it than do it wrongly. If it is done wrongly, we
have to face the consequences _sometime_. It is of course a matter of
belief whether some immediate misfortune which occurs is due to that. I
was just stating the belief in our family. You are free to accept it or
not. BUT, if the gentlemans misfortunes were not due to the wrong
performance of Sri Chakra pUjA, he'll have to face the consequences in
another life. Hopefully, that's not the case.

That should answer your question below.

> "superstitios" to claim: you are sick because of the Lord's wrath which
> you incurred by the improper performance of a karma. I am sorry. I cannot
> accept that. Are you so sure of the laws of karma, myraid and complex as
> they are, lasting over biliions of lives, involving uncountable data
> points, laws and rules so involved, that you can take one data point and
> extrapolate (or interpolate) and say, Surely, he is sick because of
> non-observance of a certain rule!!

>  And, even if you say you have done all that you know has to be done, what
> in the world gives you the surety that you know all (I mean ALL) there is
> to know about the karma or rules to be followed in the observance of a
> karma?
>  Do you know the proper rules governing the muhurtams to be chosen to do a
> karma?. Do you know of the proper rules of purifying the place of worship?
> Do you know the proper attire to wear? Do you know if you are to feed a
> Brahmin at the end of the karma? May be two Brahmins? Can a Shudra be
> allowed to enter your house when you are performing the karma? (and then
> we need to define who a shudra is!!!) I can go on asking such questions.
> And surely, you cannot say they are ALL of no relevance. Some of my
> questions may be irrelevant, not ALL. And as long as you know that you do
> not know if (i.e whether) you have followed ALL the rules, you have some
> defect that you have to be guilty of. (A complex sentence construct i
> tried to avoid, but could not. Sorry!!)

The above is quite irrelevant in my opinion. Eg, we do not know the
exact ratio of carbohydrates, proteins and fats which we should take to
live the most optimum life. But we can certainly do our best based on
the knowledge we can get from current literature. Would you say that
since the optimum ratios are not known exactly we can eat just icecream

I made my point very clear. When we know for ourselves that our
knowledge of how to perform something is not 100% we should make a
genuine effort to learn. Saying that I can't possibly know exactly every
rule, so I will do whatever I feel, is sheer laziness.

>  In the Ramayana, there is a description of the Lineage of Sri Rama.
> Every one of his ancestors, starting from Manu Himself is described IN
> DETAIL. One such person was called "Tri-Bandh-anan" (I have added the
> hypens in the name to make the meaning clear). The name was given to him
> because he had three (and mind you, only three!!) reasons preventing him
> from going to Lord Narayanas abode. One of his trangresions was: he had
> not properly purified the place of worship. Now, my question is, he who
> was in the line of Manu Himself, he, Tribandhanan, whose name is used to
> glorify Sri rama Himself, he himself was guilty of not conforming to the
> LAW. What to say of petty mortals like us!!!

Yes, so all the more reason to make more effort to do things properly!
That is exactly the moral of the story, not a license to do karma in
whatever way we feel!! The story is supposed to get you pumped up about
learning the rules, not get depressed :-).

> is something called "Temporary Insanity". Meaning, you did not know what
> you were doing when you commited your act. Meaning that you were not in
> full control of your faculties when you committed the crime. My arguments
> (and i believe a few others also) is that, such a defense is available in
> His law also. He is called HrishiKesha. One who is the controller of the
> senses. It seems like I am stupid enough to blame Hrishikesha Himself for
> my faults. What am I to do? Abandon karma altogether as a sanyasi?
> Probably yes. But what do I do if I do not have the proper vairagyam yet?

No, get to know how to perform the karma. Especially you are in a very
good position since your family is closely affiliated to the Kanchi
Matha. They have very good pandits. The pandits in India would be more
than happy to teach people, especially youngsters. Who goes to them?

This temporary insanity plea is totally bogus. As much as I have regard
for this country (USA), this is one of the completely senseless and
worthless things to emerge from this country, quite possibly in the
entire universe. I could wax eloquent on this, however this is hardly
the list for such things.

>  I stand by my point (for what it is worth!) that: if you wait till you
> can learn all the rules governing the performance of one specified karma,
> you will never do it (the karma you wish to).

OTOH, the rules for many karmas are not so complex at all. This is not
some ashvamedha yAgam we are talking about here. I can assure you that
it takes only some effort. I stand by my point: If you adopt this
attitude you'll never learn the rules.

>  and why is this Sandhya vandhanam and Gayatri of such importance, that we
> need not attach so much importance to the method itself? because, Gayatri
> is ChandasAm matham - Mother Of the Vedas and it is extremely important to
> do Gayatri Japa three times a day.

I _clearly_ said that it should not be misintepreted that we can be lax
about gAyatrI japam or sandhyAvandanam. These two are nitya karma-s and
their non-performance is _worse_ than improper performance (according to
smR^iti). Hence, my statement. This does NOT mean you coolly escape the
consequences of wrong performance.

For eg, about morning sandhyAvandanam it is said that doing it when the
stars can be seen is uttamam (best). When the sun has not arisen, but
light can be seen it is madhyamam (middling). After the sun can be seen,
it is adhamam (worst). But not doing it is adhamAdhamam. In fact if you
do not do it for three days in a row you have to do prAyaschittam.

>  For what its worth, let me go ahead and say a few words about what I
> thought I learnt from my experiences in the weeks I have spent at the
> kanchi matam.
>  Bhakti is the most important thing a mortal needs. For when there is
> Bhakti for the Lord every thing else gets motivated by it. Your Bhakti may

But bhakti, as H.H chandrashekhara bhAratI pointed out, means you have
to do the karma-s properly.

> say, is all we have, and our duty is to build on it. Nothing else matters.

I agree completely with you on the last statement. But, if that's the
case, his injunctions on karma have to be followed strictly.

Let me tell you an amusing story, which may illustrate something. We all
know that Madras needs water tanks to store water, especially in summer.
It's a good idea to build one for each locality and definitely a good
intention to build one. Now, a few years back, a few brilliant souls in
IIT Madras (where I did my undergrad) decided to build a water tank and
finished it. Then it struck these gentlemen, they had forgotten to take
into account the weight of the water in their stress calculations! Uhm,
now the tank just stands there. If they had gone through the procedures
_properly_ this would not have happened. What if they had not realized
their mistake? The tank would have buckled down sometime, possibly
injuring someone. This say something to you? :-).

Now, the performance of karma-s is no different. It is just that the
results are not as apparent. It may affect you right now or sometime
later, but if shruti and smR^iti say it will, then it will. That's the
bottomline. I am assuming here that you accept the authority of these.
If you don't, then we can just forget this altogether. But if you don't,
then why are you doing the karma-s anyway?

BTW, your ideas on performance on karma would not be accepted by H.H
chandrashekarendra sarasvatI. I have read many of his books and he
expects quite rigid adherence to rules. I'd infact say he expects very,
very, very rigid adherence to rules. I have them all back in Madras, so
can't produce quotes. Let me say something: the next time you go to
India ask either H.H Jayendra sarasvatI or H.H vijayendra sarasvatI
whether it is better to do Sri chakra pUjA (or any other karma _not_
enjoined) not knowing the rules properly or avoid it and stick to
gAyatrI (Note that learning the rules properly and doing it is not an
option here). I am betting $100 right now that they would advise you not
to do it.


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