[Advaita-l] Iswara Darshanam - 9

kuntimaddi sadananda kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Mon Mar 17 03:13:47 CDT 2014

  PraNAms to all. Continuing the series based on 11th Chapter of Geeta. For the last post the number 9 instead of 8 was inadvertently used. 
Hari Om!

                                                                              Iswara Darshanam -9

>From wonderment, Arjuna goes through intense fear as he starts seeing the destructive aspect involved in the viswarUpa Iswara darshanam. Lord is not only a creator and sustainer but also a destroyer. One has to understand that it is a constructive destruction. Actually nothing in the world can get destroyed, as we understand the Law of Conservation in science. Only one thing transforms into another. The body that which is born of food or annam, and sustained by food will go back to become food. According to Vedanta the gross body or sthUla sharIra merges with the virat swaruupa or cosmic body, which is nothing but what Arjuna is currently seeing as viswarUpa Iswara. For an ajnaani or the one who has not realized, the subtle body moves from this world to other worlds where it takes up an appropriate gross body conducive for that world or loka, to experience the next set of vaasanaas that are ready to be experienced. It is like in the dream world, where we
 need a dream body to experience the dream world. As long as appropriate body is there for functioning in that state, the experience of that world will continue. The Mandukya Up. describes the dream body similar to the waker’s body in the waking state, both with 19 windows to experience the corresponding their external worlds, ekOnavimshati mukhaH. 

Experience is different from the knowledge. A jnaani is one who understood that in spite of the experiences of the world of plurality recognizes that he is not in reality the experiencer. He understands all experiences belong to the prakRiti only – prakRityaiva ca karmANi kriyamAnAni sarvaShaH.  When a jnaani drops his body, his subtle body is no more needed and therefore it merges with the total mind, which is Hiranyagarbha. Thus there is no real destruction of anything, hence the statement of Krishna that says – that which exists can never cease to exist and that which is not existing can never come into existence – nAsatO vidyatE bhAvO nAbhAvO vidyatE sataH. 

However, those who are attached to a particular BMI will fear the destruction of that particular BMI. Arjuna appears to be in that state since it was that fear that contributed to the GeetOpadhEsha, as he felt that the destruction of the body is destruction of the individual or jiiva. Hence Krishna starts GetOpadhesha with the statement - Arjuna, you are crying where there is no reason for you to cry, since nothing gets destroyed in the universe, asochyAn anva sochatvam. This is a teaching for all of us too to be remembered when we start crying for the loss of our dear and near ones. We are unborn therefore can never die also, ajo nityaH shashvatOyam purAnaH. 

Arjuna is now seeing the extended vision that involves the vision of the future. Jnaani will only see the exhausted vision. To see the extended vision involving seeing future as well as other subtler lokas, one needs some siddhis. Yogeshwara Krishna is providing that to Arjuna. Hence Arjuna sees the destruction of the two armies as if they are heading into the fiery mouth of the VirAt swaruupa Iswara. 

There are two types of massive destructions that can happen, as illustrated in this Chapter. One is natural process that occurs due to natural calamities such as earth quakes or tsunamis. The other is the man-made calamities such as the destruction of life or causalities in wars, and the destruction caused by terrorists.  Geeta gives us two examples to illustrate the above two. yathA nadInAm bahavOmbuvEgAH samudramEvAbhimukhA dravanti, and yathA pradIptam jvalanam patangA vishanti nAshAya samRiddhavEgAH – just as rivers naturally flowing towards the ocean for their destruction and slowly becoming one with the ocean; and just as moth rushing themselves for self-destruction due to their delusion into the burning fire. The first example of rivers running naturally towards ocean for self-destruction depicts the jiiva being subjected to the natural death due to their praarabda. Natural destruction or calamities operate due to the collective praarabda of
 jiivas involved. If the nature is deliberately abused for personal gains such as pollution or mass scale destruction of natural resources like air, water, etc., which are essential ingredients needed to sustain the life, nature responds with vengeance contributing to natural destruction of life. The principle of karma operates across the board. In essence, the law of karma is none suffers/enjoys unnecessarily and everyone reaps their karma in one form or the other. We call one as lucky when he wins millions in a lottery, and other as unlucky when he lost everything in an accident; but both are reaping the benefits of what they deserve due to their prArabda. There are no accidents in life, but only incidents, as per the law of karma. Understanding this helps a jnaani not to be elated or depressed for the gains or losses –Hence Krishna says a jnaani is one who is - duHkheshu anudvigna manAH, sukhEshu vigatajvaraH – he does not get depressed for the
 loss or sufferings, nor forgets himself in the excitement when happy events occur due to prArabda during his life span.   

Time, kaala or yama, the god of death, forms the instrument of destruction. Hence Arjuna says many jiivas naturally heading towards the mouth of the VirAt purusha. When one is born, his death is already guaranteed – jAstyahi dRivo mRityuH – that which is born has to die. How fast he is approaching the death depends on his praarabda. This is the eternal wheel of action and results and the transactional world is bounded by this. In the natural calamities the prArabda of many beings are bound together. 

In addition to natural disasters, there are also man-made destructions that will result in mass scale destruction. Here two factors get involved. One is the prArabda of jiivas and the other is the deliberate will-full actions of the people who are willfully causing these mass scale destructions. Those who are responsible for such heinous actions, whatever may be their justification, cannot but suffer the consequences of their actions, whether in this life or in the life after. The law of karma is impartial in this. Krishna emphasizes this by saying as karmaphala daata or giver of fruits of actions, he is impartial. He says, samOham sarva bhUtEshu namEdvEshvOsti napriyaH, I am impartial to all; neither favors somebody or disfavors others. The mythological stories are abundantly projecting these incidences showing even incarnations undergo suffering because of the cause-effect relationships. Rama suffers because of the actions done in the past. These
 stories are projected to develop dispassion towards gains and losses, so that mind becomes free from these attachments, and becomes ready to concentrate on higher things. 

>From this, we gather that nobody suffers unnecessarily. Iswara only provides the results of actions, appropriate results for appropriate actions. Hence Geeta emphasizes that the one has to uplift oneself by oneself, and nobody can do it for you. UddharEdAtmAnam AtmAnamavasAdhayEt|  Atmaiva hyAtmanO bandhuH Atmaiva ripurAtmanaH|  It is our choice to reach higher or to go down the drain. Hence we are accountable for any will-full actions; good or bad. If we are suffering now, we need to understand that we are exhausting the results of wrongful actions done in the past or past-lives. Hence even a jnaani has to undergo suffering or pleasures due to the actions done in the past; however he understands that the prArabda does not belong to him but to his BMI. He watches his BMI undergoing the suffering or pleasures. The ajnaanis may think seeing the BMI of mahatma suffering that the jnaani is also suffering his prArabda; but from jnaani’s perspective, he
 does not own the properties of the BMI as his properties. He understands that he is or was never a doer therefore never a sufferer. He recognizes that he neither has sanchita, prArabda or AgAmi karmas, as they all belong to the prakRiti that includes the BMI. For a seeker this understanding should become a sAdhana or discipline of the mind. Hence Krishna says one has to bear the ups and downs in life considering that this is all part of prArabda that BMI has to undergo. However he has to use this knowledge to insure that all actions are done with Iswara arpita buddhi or offering to the lotus feet of the Lord, which implies that, they must be all dhArmic actions. mAtrAsparshAstu koutEya shItOShNa sukhaduHkhadAH| AgamApAyinOnityAH stAnstitikshasva bhArata|| Heat, cold, pleasures and pains come due to contact with the sense objects. They come and go, and are not permanent. Hence Arjuna forbear them as everyone experiences these due to their prArabda. None
 can avoid the results of actions done in the past. This understanding should help us to act properly in such a way that the results do not affect the person – and that is the essence of karma yoga. 

Looking the destructive form of the Lord, and remembering the sAtvic form before, Arjuna wonders engulfed by fear and wonderment says Oh! Lord! Who are you? On one side Bhagavan appears to be very compassionate and on the other side He seems to be very cruel causing massing destructions. Hai Bhagavan! I want to know your real nature, says Arjuna putting prostrations again and again. 

akhAhimE kO bhavAnugrarUpO
namO2stu tE dEvavara prasIda
vijnAtumicchAmi bhavantamAdyam
na hi prajAnAmi tava pravRittim|

Oh! Lord! With this terrible form of yours, I do not know who you are, please explain to me. My prostrations to you, again and again. Be compassionate towards me and tell me your real nature, since I am unable to grasp from these changing and frightening visions. 

To Him the Lord explains. 
To be continued.
Hari Om!

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