Om Sri Vallabha Ganapathi Thunai
Om Sri Angala Parameswari Thunai Om Sri Guruve Saranam
DIFFERENCES AND DELUSIONS
Beyond words and deeds, flashing like lightning with mighty force attacks – this is the delusion of Maya.
- Karapathira Siddhar
Uncontrollable force, none daring to control, intermittently swallowing, and continuously chasing humanity – this is the delusion of Maya
- Uduakkai Siddhar
Forces one to carry an earthen vessel, rattles one to the core by displaying death, and plays havoc by dipping humanity in the filth of sexual urge – this is the delusion of Maya
- Kuppai Siddhar
Makes one yearn for physical company with the opposite sex, thus drowns one in the sea of problems, plays hide and seek with humanity and finally becomes a karmic debt – this is the delusion of Maya.
- Thozhupettu Siddhar
Converts lie and slander into gold, makes truth meaningless, and binds a man to sin – this is the delusion of Maya.
- Silakkagitha Siddhar
Thus very great Siddha Purushas with due “respect” describe the many facets of the grand delusion called “Maya”.
Each and every individual, according to his/her spiritual advancement has to face, fight internally, externally and eternally the influence of Maya which attacks mercilessly through infinite shapes, sizes and forces. No one is ever really free from its ruthless clutches. To name a few varieties of Maya –
Visible Maya, Invisible Maya, Comprehensible Maya, Incomprehensible Maya, Paralysing Maya, Fatalistic Maya, Realistic Maya, etc.
Each and every thing, whether animate or inanimate one way or the other, is either controlled or propelled into action by the force of Maya. Hence none can predict the attack of Maya regarding its motivation, shape, size, force, time, place, etc.
Saint Arunagirinathar in simple words sang
“Unpredictable is the Maya
Always binding humanity to good or bad.”
POWER OF MAYA
Any effort to identify, classify and testify Maya is only comparable to a blind man by birth, trying to search a black cat inside a dark cave at midnight. The one and the only unique character of Maya is that none will be aware of its “possession”, never will doubt its devilish orgy, when in action, nor even remotely suspect its hand in the calamity after its departure.
Thus with infinite power, sparing none, being present everywhere in the Cosmos, and an ever active entity – Maya should be understood right from its origin to tackle it successfully and get rid of it. An individual can develop his/her faculty of logic/reasoning and philosophy by studying religious books. With the aid of philosophical knowledge, one can deliver thousands of lectures on various religious topics. But one can never dream of divine perceptions, through book-knowledge. One may be eloquent in grammar, literature, dramas and music and get many doctorates, but constantly engaging one’s thoughts, words and deeds in God is beyond the realm of even the imagination of an individual.
A small story is being narrated to explain this.
Four individuals entered at the same time into a vineyard. The grapes were ripe and tantalizing. One among the four started experimenting on the soil of the garden.
The second one started his research on the shape and size and colour of the fruits. The third one was busy with the commercial aspects of the harvest of fruits. The last, but not the least one, without bothering himself with such useless researches and experiments, straight like an arrow plucked the fruits and started tasting them. Out of the four, the man who ate the fruits only is capable of certifying to their taste.
Similarly, one can dive deep into researches on beauty of words and meanings, but can never perceive divinity. Likewise, people who discuss about Maya and conduct research by going deep into the subject can derive benefit only to some extent in understanding it, but can never perceive it. The individual who can make others to perceive it, should have totally mastered it himself.
DIVINE ROLE OF SATGURU
The only individual who understands, perceives, identifies and controls Maya is the Divine Satguru or Asaan. Divine nourishment can be provided by the Guru alone. The guru alone is capable of perceiving the root cause of all voluntary and involuntary action , the Maya.
The first step to understand Maya is to have a crystal clear consciousness. One cannot see any image in muddy water. In the same way, the confused mind cannot receive or register anything fed into it. To attain a clear, trouble-free consciousness, one has to totally submit one’s self to a Divine Guru, devoting his whole life in the guru’s service.
Once the mind is free from all encumbrances, it can start understanding Maya – the understanding of Maya will lead to the devising of ways and means to conquer it.
Saint Thirumoolar in his Thirumanthiram simply explains in four lines how to free the mind from the clutches of confusion. The four lines are :
தெளிவு குருவின் திருமேனி காண்டல்
தெளிவு குருவின் திருவார்த்தை கேட்டல்
தெளிவு குருவின் திருநாமம் செப்பல்
தெளிவு குருஉரு சிந்தித்தல் தானே
A truly wise individual, by virtue of his/her constant wholehearted service to a Satguru, sacrificing bodily comforts, wealth and pleasures in totality, will be able to get the Satguru’s wholehearted divine blessings in the form of Brahma Vidya or divine wisdom. All intellectual gymnastics are considered as ‘untouchable absurdities’. With knowledge, capacity and intelligence only, one can understand just a fraction of spirituality. Man tends to believe that what happens in every individual’s life form is the ultimate truth. But once they are initiated into the secret science of the Sages, they understand beyond doubt, that all human dramas, including the stage are grand illusion – Maya. Their ‘third eye’ or Eye of Wisdom would be opened. The gates of the spiritual worlds will be opened to them. Such is the unlimited, unimaginable power and grace of a Satguru.
To illustrate this statement, we give below a brief account of what happened some twenty thousand years ago in the mighty Altantian civilization that had disappeared without any trace from the face of the earth.
At one stage in the Atlantian civilization, material science and black magic were at their zenith. They succeeded in resurrecting the dead. They even went to the extent of meddling with the laws of Nature. At that time new born babies were taken to the temples and placed before high priests. By their spiritual powers, the priests were able to scan the new-born’s entire past and determine the purpose of its present sojourn on this earth. After thorough analysis of its past merits and demerits, they were able to guide its parents in the proper manner to channelize its destiny in order to succeed in its present physical birth. To predict with such an uncanny precision of a soul’s destiny in its sojourn in a physical body requires very high degree of spiritual evolution and total mastery of illusions or Maya in all its facets. Only a Guru who has mastered delusion can bring about ‘difference’ in an individual’s Maya (life).
“Is it possible in this kaliyuga for everyone to be blessed with a Satguru?” Thus in all humility enquires Sage Bhoga of his Satguru Lord Agasthya.
As answer to such wonderful question put to him on behalf of the humanity, Lord Agasthya replies :
True devotion towards a Guru can be achieved not by humble prostrations but by believing a Guru’s words blindly through the process of total wear and tear of the physical body. Any amount of research, understanding or application using one’s intellectual capabilities will only become useless endeavour. Any faculty without the Guru’s personal tutelage will not progress. A man’s life will rust away without a Guru.
As already stated, to achieve a clear consciousness, one has to get rid of all confusions from one’s mind. Before that, one should plainly understand that the root cause of all confusions is DESIRE.
HOW TO CONTROL THE STORMY MIND ?
When desires exceed their limitations, and fail to materialize, then bitter disappointment sets in. This sort of disappointment is bound to occur in each and everyone’s life at some time or stage of life. The climax of this disappointment will lead one to vicious hatred, this hatred will pave the way to uncontrollable anger. When an individual falls prey to anger, all his mental faculties, capabilities take leave of him, goading him to commit some heinous crime. When an individual wants to safeguard himself, the most important thing is to steer clear of anger.
Saint Thiruvalluvar in a simple verse says :
தன்னைத்தான் காக்கின் சினம்காக்க காவாக்கால்
தன்னையே கொல்லும் சினம்
Hence the sure way to successfully tackle the illusionary tricks of Maya is to cautiously approach any incident, challenge, calamity, problem, etc. with incredible tolerance and patience. Patience, tolerance and steadfastness are the mighty weapons in one’s arsenal to fight with any challenge, problem, trouble, hindrance, impediment, etc. in one’s life; these three qualities also help man to approach everything in life with a correct perspective and prevent him from any blind and bull-headed advance without a second thought. Any final decision taken after analyzing a problem patiently and intelligently will definitely lead to victory over the effects, illusions created by Maya. This sort of a calm and composed attitude towards problems in life can only be the gift from a Satguru in the form of His wholehearted blessings.
Apart from this gift, the mere gaze of a Satguru is capable of detaching an individual totally from the grand illusion of his wealth, health, physical, mundane pleasures, strength, capacities, etc. in no time.
So far as an individual is under the influence of Maya he tends to identify himself as different from everything in this world. Microcosm, Jeevatma, Divine Spark – the man variously known is not at all different from the Macrocosm – Paramatma, the Divine Fire or God known by various names. Both are one and the same. But the Paramatma is absolutely free from the influence, effect of power of Maya and has total realization of Itself. However, the poor Jeevatma which is encased in Maya miserably fails to see the unity in diversity and lands itself in all sorts of problems. To explain this in a simple manner,
Jug, cooking vessel, stove, flower pot, ceiling tiles, etc. are different things produced from clay. If their physical form gets destroyed, all that remains is the basic or root matter called clay.
Likewise, the primary and basic root matter, that is the cause for all things animate, inanimate, visible, invisible, comprehensible, incomprehensible etc is Prakriti or the power of Paramatma.
All the human dramas performed on the invisible stage of time, after the performance is over, actors, director, orchestra, including the stage get merged into one and absorbed into eternity, which is otherwise called Paramatma or God. Hence neither the actors nor the stage is permanent but GOD the infinite or eternity is alone permanent. To put it in nutshell
That which changes is not permanent.
That which is not permanent is called Maya.
Bhagawan Ramana Maharishi in an eloquent manner stated, ‘There is nothing permanent except change’. Hence change is the only permanent aspect in this cosmos.
An example - the image reflected by a mirror can be compared to Maya, whereas the thing outside the mirror is a reality. If we remove the mirror, the image is dead and not the reality outside it. We see things and people through rose coloured glasses and it is only when you throw them away, or break them, that we realize reality.
Likewise, the primary aspect GOD outside the boundaries of time and space is Reality.
All other things in the cosmos under the influence of time and space are Maya.
Now having a fair idea of Maya, we will now try to explore the avenues which lead to realize Maya.
When a man is respected and revered, he becomes a Mahatma;
When he is cursed and despised, he becomes an animal;
When treated as a Mahatma he is elated;
When treated as an animal, he is depressed.
Thus so far as he is under the influence and stimulation of the twin qualities, differentiating them, he is totally unfit to understand the blinding factor called Maya.
Not feeling elated when praised, not feeling sad when despised, and always staying in the neutral ground, a man qualifies for his first round. A supreme self-controlled individual alone can understand the supreme changing aspect called Maya.
Two entities both in motion can never comprehend each other. It is a cosmic rule, that either one should be totally motionless to understand the other.
World famous scientist Albert Einstein, based his ‘Theory of Relativity’ on this changing versus motionless principle of the cosmos. But our ancient rishis many thousands of years before Einstein, had explained without complicated mathematics this Maya principle in two words, ‘Differences and Delusions’.
Saint Pattinathadigal propounding the immutable aspect of God sings thus :
ஊரும் சதமல்ல உற்றாரும் சதமல்ல உற்று பெற்ற பேரும் சதமல்ல
பெண்டிர் சதமல்ல பிள்ளைகளும் சதமல்ல
இவ்வுலகில் யாரும் சதமல்ல நின்தாள் சதம்
Vedas also proclaim the same by ‘Brahmaiva Satyam Jagat Mitya’.
An individual in sorrow, trouble, peak problems, and deceived tends to behave like a lunatic when the Maya crosses one’s limit of tolerance. In the same way, a totally selfish individual to attain his selfish ends will also behave like a lunatic.
Making one’s self to lose one’s self-control, intelligence, capacities, education, etc. is the Maya or delusion.
Thoroughly understanding the above as Maya and steering clear of the same will lead to permanent happiness.
The root-cause of all misery is Maya.
The root-cause of Maya is Supreme Ignorance.
The root-cause of Supreme Eternal happiness is self-realised wisdom.
Maturity of intelligence leads to destruction of selfishness. By destruction of selfishness, altruism is born, paving the golden road to eternal bliss.
DEATH IS THE REAL TEACHER
In this context, Sage Bhoga with infinite humbleness asks his Satguru Saint Agastheeswarar.
‘Most venerabe Guru, on what should humanity contemplate to attain a rock-steady mind and supreme mastery over one’s self permanently unmindful of the happenings of whatever nature around one’s self?’
Lord Agasthya replies,
‘Every individual, each and every moment should dwell on death, Bhoga.’
Anything having a beginning should definitely have an end. This is the Law of the Universe.
Birth and death are the cosmic play of the Almighty God. Alas, according to materialistic faith, death is treated as some sorrowful event, fit only for mourning.
Is this true? No, No, No.
Death is the liberation granted by God to an individual soul imprisoned in a human physical shell which has toiled all its mundane life like a sandwich caught in between happiness and sorrow. A long suffered soul, encased in a flesh-jacket made out of the five elements, slowly waning in strength and vitality due to old age, disease, etc., all of a sudden gets released from its life long prison in the form of death – a boon granted by the Almighty having boundless compassion on the suffering souls. A released soul can be compared to a free bird bursting with joy and happiness, when suddenly released from its iron cage, after many years of imprisonment – said by siddha purushas.
In other words, only through death one can comprehend the root of Maya.
In ancient Egypt, in the death chamber of Pharaohs, pictures of a small bird were painted getting out of the dead body to indicate the soul ‘ka’ getting its release from the flesh cage and soaring high with total independence.
The only enlightened gnani who can totally understand and appreciate the joy and happiness of a departed soul is a Satguru. He alone is capable of having constant telepathic contact with the departing soul. He is in the most convenient and elevated position to guide the just departed soul in its upward journey towards other dimensions. Through the two way telepathic contact the Satguru is fully informed about the departing soul’s entire life-cycle in this world as a first-hand information. As such, he alone is the witness to the boundless joy and pure happiness experienced by the departing soul, once it gets out of its physical prison.
But the unrealized souls completely immersed in Maya deed the occasion fit for grand celebration when a baby is born; that too when it is a male child. For the new-born baby, it is the first day, but for the rest of its life, is full of struggle, fight, toil, etc.
This sort of topsy-turvy mentality to rejoice at birth and mourn at death is the titanic blow delivered by Maya on ignorant humanity.
To understand birth and death in their true perspective and to give them the importance they deserve is Difference.
Thus never perturbed nor feel even an iota on the happenings of birth, death, happiness, sorrow, good, bad, for that matter all deceptive dualities in this world, is the soul called Satguru or Gnani.
Any one can outwardly speak in bold and careless terms about death. But when the hour strikes, there is none in this world who is not rattled to the core shivering with the fear of black death. The very reason for this meaningless fear is never engaging in self-realisation.
True self-realisation is probing deep into the mysteries of physical death. Thus the great Siddha purusha Kuppai Siddhar points out,
Ramana underwent the experience of death,
Thus he turned his unshakable faith on Lord Shiva.
Once the screen of horror and diabolism of death was raised, self-realisation dawned on Bhagawan Ramana Maharishi.
‘One is the religion and one is God,
Have this faith and there is no fear of death.’
This is known as ‘ekeeswara philosophy’.
Ceaseless dwelling on the aspect of death will make an individual a solitary person thus paving the way towards self-realisation finally to reach a position beyond the duality of birth and death.
BHAGAVAT GEETHA LEADS YOU
Now coming to the heart of the subject ‘Differences and Delusions’, we will elaborately go over the procedure adopted by the time-honoured Vaishnavite tradition in guiding a newly departed soul from its mortal sheath. Lord Krishna imparts this esoteric knowledge to Arjuna.
Taking a typical case of a human body at the threshold of clinical death, we see a Vaishnavite Guru sitting in the posture of padmasana near the head of the body. He chants in a condensed form the eighteen chapters of Bhagavad Gita, in two lines each, one after the other. After the chanting of each chapter in two lines, the soul starts its exit, stage by stage, as given below.
FIRST CHAPTER ( Slokas 21-22)
The slokas starting ‘Hirusehkasandth thatha vakkya’ and ending ‘Ranasamuthyame’.
Arjuna standing on the platform of the battle chariot addresses Lord Krishna, “Oh, Krishna! Please drive the chariot to a vintage point from where I can see the entire army of the enemy as well as the soldiers who are going to fight on behalf of Duryodhana.”
Condition of the body
The lying body starts experiencing dimness of vision. They eyes will start rolling fast in search of light inside the closed eyelids.
SECOND CHAPTER ( Sloka 7)
The sloka starting ‘karpanya thoshobahatha’ and ending ‘prapannam’.
With supreme humility Arjuna speaks to Lord Krishna, ‘I, Arjuna who has lost the sense of duty and natural traits due to compassion, request you Krishna, please advise me that which is beneficial to me, being your disciple, I surrender unto you, hence, please order me as to what I should do now.’
Condition of the body
The eyes will see a very faint ray of light. Having seen this ray of light, the eyelids will start battering at a faster rate.
THIRD CHAPTER (Sloka 40)
The sloka starting ‘indriyani manobuddhi’ and ending with ‘mavrutha dhehinem’.
The five perceptions of the physical body, mind and buddhi are known as the seat of desires. These always tend to blind human intelligence and in turn hypnotise the soul residing in the flesh body.
Condition of the body
The rolling eyes will become absolutely motionless. The vision will become introvert. The Adam’s apple will jerk up and down. Hiccups will start.
FOURTH CHAPTER (Sloka 21)
The sloka starting ‘niraseer yadhasidhatma’ and ending with ‘karma kurvanopthi kilpisham’.
Whoever he may be, he who has complete control over the mind, who is desireless and who has mastered his physical body, who is totally detached from all mundane materialism, only attends to the dire necessities of physical requirements (karmas) will not come to any harm.
Condition of the body
The body will gradually start losing heat, beginning from the tip of the fingers in the hand to the shoulder. At this stage, the soul feeling the chillness of the body will make an attempt to get released from the chilling body. After complete chilling of the two hands, the soul will try to exit through the navel opening.
Now the Guru will stop the soul’s exit by sealing of the navel path.
FIFTH CHAPTER (Slokas 8, 9)
The sloka starting ‘naiva kinchit karomeethi’ and ending with ‘idi tharayan’.
A realized yogi is fully aware of whatever he does like seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, eating, moving, sleeping, breathing, etc. are not his actions. Voluntarily or involuntarily whatever he does, the five perceptions always go after their respective attractions, this sort of realization coupled with his disassociation with his acts leads to self-realisation.
Condition of the body
Having the navel exit blocked, the soul will move further down and will make an attempt to get out through the external sex organs. At this juncture, the stomach will bulge and body will urinate involuntarily. The Guru will block this exit also.
SIXTH CHAPTER (Sloka 25)
The sloka starting with ‘ sanai ruparameth’ and ending with ‘kinchithapi sindhapeth’.
Braveness coupled with logic, one should gradually try to achieve mental tranquility and peace. Once the mind centres itself in the Self or Atman, then it will never wander.
Condition of the body
The soul will further get down and will try to get out via the anus. At this stage, urinating will stop abruptly. The stomach will bulge further, wheezing will set in and intestines will get twisted. The lower portion of the body will start rolling. This exit will also be blocked by the Satguru.
SEVENTH CHAPTER (Sloka 30)
The sloka starting ‘sathiboothathithivam mam’ and ending with ‘ yuktha sethasa’.
Whoever perceives me through the three forms of ‘adibootham, adithaivam and adiyagnam’, even at their death bed will concentrate on Me with a steady mind.
Condition of the body
Having blocked the exit of the anus also, the hands and legs will start jerking violently. The body will start cooling down, starting from the tip of the toes of the feet up to the external sex organs.
EIGHTH CHAPTER (Slokas 12, 13)
The sloka starting ‘sarvat vaarani samyamya’ and ending with ‘ paramangathim’.
Whoever leaves one’s physical body by shutting all the exits of physical perceptions, centering the mind at the Heart, establishing the prana principle at the top of the head merged in the yoga stage, chanting the sacred AUM and single pointedly concentrating on Me, reaches Heaven.
Condition of the body
The infuriated soul, thwarted in its attempt to get out through each and every exit, will now try to spread like an exploded bomb to get out through all the exits simultaneously. The near chilled body will now shoot up in temperature exceeding the normal limits by this sudden action of the soul.
NINTH CHAPTER (Sloka 18)
The sloka starting ‘ kathipratha iprabhu’ and ending with ‘beeja mavyayam’.
I am being the root of life, protector, ruler, spectator, earth, friend, birth place, place of refuge, treasure and immortal seed of this cosmos.
Condition of the body
At this stage, the Satguru will completely block all the nine exits of the body by His divine powers. The body will again suddenly cool down after closure of all the orifices.
TENTH CHAPTER (Sloka 41)
The sloka starting ‘yatyat vibhuthimath’ and ending with ‘dejomsa sambhavam’.
Any material that propounds My Vibhuthi (Holy Ash) principle, contains the aspect of Lakshmi, possess mighty power and that material is considered to be born out of My Sakthi principle.
Condition of the body
Now the physical body will calm down without any perceptible motion.
If the departing soul had done considerable good deeds in its present sojourn, then its entire evolution will run before its astral eyes like a 3D motion picture. The soul can witness with great clarity and neutrality all its previous existence in this world. The entire process will last only for a few conventional seconds.
ELEVENTH CHAPTER (Slokas 55, 8)
The sloka starting ‘mathkarmakrun mathparamo’ and ending with ‘mamothi pandava’ and the sloka starting with ‘nathumam sankyase’ and ending with ‘yoga maichvaram’.
Whoever he may be, he who does My work, treats Me as the Highest of all things is very devoted to Me without having attachment to anything, has no enmity, towards any living form, finally merges with Me.
Arjuna, you are absolutely incapable of having any Divine Darshan with your mortal eyes. Now, I grant you Divine Vision through which you can witness the yoga by which you can perceive my Divinity.
Condition of the body
At this stage, the soul will come to know of its next destination and its further duties. All those who have passed away before him (relatives, friend, well-wishers, etc.) will form a reception committee to welcome the newcomer. Unbiased, the soul will evaluate its merits and demerits accumulated in the present incarnation which it had just completed. Now according to the soul’s evolution, the form of its personal Guru or Guide as worshipped by it will appear before it with glowing effulgence. According to the soul’s accumulated merits, if the Guru wishes, he may give upadesam. Till the completion of this stage, the soul is unable to get its release.
TWELFTH CHAPTER (Sloka 7)
The sloka starting with ‘thesha maham samutharathaa’ and ending with ‘sedhasam’.
Whoever steadfastly clings to Me, I save them quickly from the sea of family life (samasara) i.e. I guide them from mortality to immortality.
Condition of the body
This is the phase when the soul is ready to be released permanently from its case. The Satguru completes his divine duty by way of showing the soul all that is to be shown and makes it perceive the unity in diversity, that is God. After this, he allows the soul to withdraw from its physical shell.
THIRTEENTH CHAPTER (Sloka 9)
The sloka starting ‘asakthi rana pishvanga’ and ending with ‘mishta nishtopa pathishu’.
One should always be neutral when exposed to likes and dislikes and should have total detachment in family life and at the same time lead a peaceful life.
Condition of the body
The liberated, but earth bound soul now hovers over its mortal remains and concentrates on the happenings around its physical body. It can telepathically read all the thoughts and speeches of its near and dear and identify the truth and false.
FOURTEENTH CHAPTER (Sloka 20)
The sloka starting ‘gunanetha natheethya’ ending with ‘machuthe’.
He who has transcended the characters (satvam, rajas am and thamasam) which are the root cause of the formation of physical body gets released from birth, death, senility, agony and becomes immortal.
Condition of the body
Now the soul witnesses the obsequies performed to its physical shell in a total nonchalant and detached manner. It may in some cases accompany the dead body and be present till its disposal.
FIFTEENTH CHAPTER (Sloka 4)
The sloka starts ‘ thatha padam thath’ and ends with ‘iprasrudha purnee’.
Realising the macrocosm from which all have been born and following the footsteps of great evolved souls which do not return to this mundane life, that is the best route to follow.
Condition of the soul
After the funeral (burial or cremation) the released soul due to its attachments and bondages may be earth bound for days, months, years, decades, why even centuries. Only after realization of the futility of its tenacious hold on earthly things, the soul moves to the next p[lane of astral evolution. Here, the soul is capable of knowing all its relations right from the day it incarnated as a human being in its upward evolution and also their present occupation in various planes of evolution.
SIXTEENTH CHAPTER (Sloka 5)
The sloka starts ‘ dhaiveesampth vimokshaya’ and ends with ‘pandava’.
Divine gift will lead oneself to liberation and asura gift will entangle oneself in attachment. Oh, Pandava ! Do not grieve, your birth is akin to divine gift only.
Condition of the soul
At this stage the soul gets the true perspective and the highly complicated process involving the birth of a baby. All the hidden secrets of the origin of one’s birth are thrown open to it. It understands the science of semen and the guidelines involving its future evolution.
SEVENTEENTH CHAPTER (Sloka 3)
The sloka starts ‘sathvanuroopa sarvasya’ and ending with ‘purushoyo yatchisratha saayasa’.
Arjuna, each and everyone’s attempts will be according to their mental maturity. Finally they become one with their attempt.
Condition of the soul
Now the soul prays with divine inspiration to the Satguru and the Almighty, that all his relatives, friends, near and dear should be blessed with the same golden opportunity to pass out from this world as it had done.
EIGHTEENTH CHAPTER (Sloka 62, 66)
The sloka starts ‘thameva saranan katcha’ and ends with ‘sasvadam’ and starts with ‘sarvadharman’ and ends with ‘mokshayishyami ma such’.
Partha ! Thou shall surrender by all means to Him and by His grace you will attain incomparable and immortal position.
Thou shall totally surrender all yourself unto Me alone and I shall release you from all good and bad and protect you.
Condition of the soul
With the supreme satisfaction of having completed all its tasks in this mundane world, completely detaching itself from all earthly bondages, attachment, connections, etc., the soul passes away within a fraction of a second to other places of existence to continue its spiritual evolution according to the merits and demerits accrued in this world.
Whoever wishes to guide the departing soul in the above-said manner should read loudly the slokas from Geetha with single minded devotion and supreme concentration either in Sanksrit or their mother tongue.
It is a confirmed fact that even though the stages of the soul’s exit may differ and not coincide exactly with that sloka, even then, the power of that particular Geetha sloka will still guide the soul at that given stage of exit.
Even if one completes the eighteen slokas beforehand (before the soul completely severs its connection with the body) still the vibration of the slokas will act upon the soul and guide it at each and every stage until the completion of the journey to other planes.
A physical body, thus discarded in the above guided manner will have a peaceful and smiling countenance. The body will not bloat nor the skin will shrink. This type of physical death is known as tranquil death.
The newly departed soul has got the three choices placed before it. These are (i) dark underground world (ii) intermediary world (iii) astral world. This again depends on the merits or demerits at credit in the account of the departed soul.
None is capable of getting in touch with the soul in the dark region.
A very strong medium is a must to contact souls dwelling in the intermediary world. Even a strong medium will faint due to the energy sapped out in the process of the contact.
Astral world denizens can effortlessly contact anyone on earth through divine mediums, gnanis, saints, sages and satgurus.
There are infinite number of lokas apart from the three mentioned above. Those who are residing in these lokas are powerful in all aspects. They can perform any miracle in any world, irrespective of space and time. Even these souls after exhausting their merits should one day come down and incarnate as human beings. No one is permitted to stay forever in any world or loka.
Only the most divine and evolved souls that have merged completely with the Almighty God alone are spared from the cycle of birth and death. Hence the Almighty alone is capable of severing the vicious cycle of birth and death permanently. Thus the philosophy of human soul or jeevatma being a fit instrument in the hands of the Almighty is known as ‘abheda vaadam.’ The thought of ‘I am omnipotent, I can do anything’, is Maya.
All is one and one is all – this is Difference.
To explain the senseless attachment of humanity to each and everything Sage Bhoga asks his Satguru Lord Agasthya, ‘What makes an individual bind himself/herself with this physical world?’
Lord Agasthya replies, ‘My dear disciple Bhoga! Fear, ignorance and prejudice are the three villains that bind human soul with their world.’
Hence an individual comparing his charm, educational qualifications, capacities, accomplishments, wealth, power, etc with those of others and jumping to the conclusion that these alone are the ruling factors in one’s life is foolish thinking. It is nothing but mere illusions (Maya).
An individual never realizes that there is one Supreme Force controlling and ruling the entire cosmos, unless one or more of the above mentioned factors gets totally changed or destroyed.
Hence, to escape from the clutches of Maya, one should always perform the day-to-day chores of life in a detached manner, humbly submitting himself as well as his actions to the Almighty. To cultivate this type of humbleness, one should regularly visit a temple, church, mosque, synagogue, gurudwara, etc. according to one’s religious faith and worship the Supreme Light that guides a soul from mortality to immortality.
Finally one of the most powerful weapons to vanquish Maya is meditation or dhyana. But it is not absolutely possible for everyone to master the art of meditation. Vama (tantric) shastras explain elaborately the correct methods to perform meditation. Just closing both the eyes and diluting one’s thoughts on different subjects is not at all meditation.
First of all one should be completely free from any bad habits that may injure and damage the physical body. Then with incredible patience and perseverance, slowly but steadily control the mind. Total negation of thoughts will lead to concentration on Brahman which in turn will submerge the individual internally and eternally into meditation. This is called the true meditation practiced by Sages of ancient as well as the modern times.
To succeed in any attempt, especially meditation one should have unshakable faith in oneself. Every individual should feel that victory is her/her birth-right and toil towards the goal.
To be doubtful of one’s own strength, capacity, caliber is known as Maya.
Immersed in the thought of God and facing any challenge in life is Difference.
The shortest cut to achieve self-confidence is to compare one’s progress every day with one’s own progress the previous day and improve rather than compare one’s progress with others.
Humbleness towards others on account of their wealth, strength, power, etc. is not at all true humbleness. One’s body, mind and soul will shrink with humbleness before great mahatmas at sight. This is true humbleness.
Swami Gnanananda Giri
The last, but not the least is one’s own thoughts. Lord Krishna in the Bhagawad Gita says, ‘Man is made by his beliefs, as he believes, so is he’. Man is moulded by his own thoughts and finally becomes what he thinks.
Swami Gnanananda Giri was a great mahatma and he came to this world only for its upliftment. He is one of the spiritual titans who has total control over the aspect called mind. His message to the world is, ‘Excepting God, everything is Maya, the relentless pursuit to merge with God is the Difference.’
Another great saint like Swami Gnanananda Giri was Swami Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, a mahatma who sacrificed everything for the sake of God and wonder of wonder, a jeevatma who treated his own wife as his mother, thus elevating womanhood to its pinnacle of glory in Hinduism.
A wife is not a thing of pleasure to a husband. At every stage of a man’s life, the woman acts as his friend in helping him as a counselor in advising him, a slave performing all sorts of day-to-day chores for him, finally a mother protecting and serving him in his old age.
Hence treating a wife as a thing of pleasure is Maya, respecting and revering a wife as a mother is divine inspiration.
Every husband should slowly cultivate the habit of treating one’s wife as his mother right from his young age. This is the only way to get rid of the sexual urge from one’s life. Hinduism considers all women as the divine aspect of Sakthi and allots a very important position and role in the Hindu society.
Finally, to destroy Maya beyond resurrection, one should have whole-hearted and total blessings of a Satguru. The omnipotent Guru alone knows how to tackle the omnipresent Maya. At the same time a disciple should be staunch and sincere in his devotion. A Guru is always merciful. He will give many opportunities to his disciple to rectify himself. In spite of this, if the disciple takes over advantage of his Guru’s leniency, then the Guru has every right to cut off his relationship with him. One should have blind faith in a Guru and follow his instructions and commands implicitly. This sort of faith alone can propel a man to self-realisation and finally merge with God. Before self-realisation, everything is Maya. After self-realisation everything is Difference. When knowing, knowledge and object of knowledge disappear, the one and the only thing that is present is Brahman. Whoever he may be, he who is immersed in Brahman, finally becomes Brahman itself. ‘Berahamavid Brahamaiva bhavati’. Thus say the sages of wisdom.
Lord Agasthya in simple words explains the above that unless a man is initiated into the secret of ‘amurineer’ (yogic urine) by one’s Guru, he can never comprehend the root of Maya.
For those who have not mastery over the chanting of Srimad Bhagavad Gita a recitation is enclosed for their guidance.