Sunday, January 29, 2012

Ambedkar-vivekananda-Education of masses

If there is one Man who would have embraced Ambedkar and made him sit in his heart it is none other than Vivekananda.

Every upper caste curses Dr B R Ambedkar with all possible bad words, now after reading the below quotations of vivekananda, they will do the same thing to vivekananda also....

If there is inequality in nature, still there must be equal chance for all — or if greater for some and for some less — the weaker should be given more chance than the strong.
In other words, a Brahmin is not so much in need of education as a Chandâla. If the son of a Brahmin needs one teacher, that of a Chandala needs ten. For greater help must be given to him whom nature has not endowed with an acute intellect from birth. It is a madman who carries coals to Newcastle. The poor, the downtrodden, the ignorant, let these be your God. [ C.W.. VI.319 ]

Well then, my plans are, therefore, to reach these masses of India. Suppose you start schools all over India for the poor, still you cannot educate them. How can you? The boy of four years would better go to the plough or to work, than to your school. He cannot go to your school. It is impossible. Self-preservation is the first instinct. But if the mountain does not go to Mohammed, then Mohammed can come to the mountain. Why should not education go from door to door, say I. If a ploughman's boy cannot come to education, why not meet him at the plough, at the factory, just wherever he is? Go along with him, like his shadow. But there are these hundreds and thousands of monks, educating the people on the spiritual plane; why not let these men do the same work on the intellectual plane? Why should they not talk to the masses a little about history — about many
things? The ears are the best educators. [ C..Vol.VIII.P-88&89]
Courtesy [ I have copied the images from Internet, thanks to those who put them ]

Down Fall of India

RSS is one organisation which is spreading false message to people of India by saying the reasons for downfall of India are

a) Forcible conversion.
b) Foreign invasion and thus weakening of cultural values.
c) They often quote past prosperity and try to fuel hatred among the young minds
d) Hindu supremacy, one nation, one leader is the only solution to problems of India
Let us see all the above points under the below quotations


Vivekananda gives below reasons for mass conversion in India

"The Mohammedan conquest of India came as salvation to the down-trodden, to the poor. That is why one-fifth of our people have become Mohammedans. It was not sword that did it all. It would be the height. Of madness to think it was all the work of sword and fire. And one-fifth-one half-of your Madras people will become Christians if you do not take care. Was there ever a sillier before in the world than what I saw in Malabar country? The poor Pariah is not allowed to pass through the same street as the high-caste man, but if he changes his name to a hodgepodge English name, it is all right; or to a Mohammedan name, it is all right"

I have seen many of educated pampered software engineers changing team or company just because their Manager has passed a humiliating remark.Under this light we have to see, if at all a humiliated ill-treated outcaste Hindu gets converted to another religion for paltry some rupees 5000 to 10,000 then the entire onus lies on us.

Retardation in progress:

 It is very obvious that any country whose 85% population is uneducated and is in the state of misery. Then that country is also in bad shape. Such was the state of our Country India. Its the failure of education reaching masses one of the primary reasons. A misquoted chaturvarna and selfish priestly class ensured non brahmins remain uneducated for 1000's of years..

"I believe in helping the miserable. I consider that the great national sin is the neglect of the masses, and that is one of the causes of our downfall" [ Swami vivekananda ]

Philosophical degradation of Inida:

One of the pioneers of modern kannada literature and stalwart Sri A R krishna Shastry writes [reason for philosophical degradation of Inida... ]
"We just tried to trash the theories[advaita,dvaita,vishistadvaita] of each other and failed to perceive the beauty lying in each of the theories that existed in hindu scriptures.There by we failed to do a further constructive study of the same"
 Thus theories formed some time in 7th century itself were praised and not even followed, they led to the philosophical downfall of India This is how we lost the edge, and people of west came to the same conclusion that shankara had come(in 7th century) in the eyes of Immanuel kant. Alas Vivekananda had to write a letter to Max Muller " it was not kant, but it was shankara who discovered it first".
Such unscientific blind devotion was the mindset of learned class; Now west is also able to comprehend shankara both by reading Indian scriptures and through their own scientific quest, hence India is lagging behind now both in philosophy and science as well. Priestly class is happy performing rituals, so what they are the brilliant race, children of those 7 rishis, yes they are the brain behind the present India.

 Hindu supremacy:
There are various  hindu scriptures, these are the same scriptures that motivated Gandhji, vivekananda in a positive direction. But the same scriptures have motivated RSS in a wrong way. Never did Gandhi or Vivekananda spoke about Hindu supremacy, they always felt a need for religious harmony.

Now the religious scriptures that RSS believes in are shastras mainly, mind you they are not Upanishads. Shastras foster principles like misquoted legacy chaturvarna, Brahmin is the highest etc. Although every caste is allowed to join RSS, internally they spread the same thoughts in the name of hindutva. Alas quotes of Vivekananda and Bhagat singh are entirely ignored by RSS
No man is born to any religion; he has a religion in his own soul. let there be as many religions as there are human beings.
    [ Swami vivekananda ]

Friday, January 13, 2012

Mundaka upanishad & ritual

Here lets analyze what we can infer from couple of verses from mundaka updanishad.

Mundaka 1.1.5
Mundaka 1.2.7[sacrifice has to be understood as homa, yajna,havana and not as  act of losing or surrendering ]
tatrapara , rgvedo yajurvedah samavedo atharvavedah siksa kalpo vyakaranam niruktam
chando jyotisam iti. Atha para yayatad aksaram adhigam yate
Plava hy ete adrdha yajnarupa astadas oktam avaram yesu karma etat sreyo ye'bhinandanti mudha jara-mytyum e punar evapi yanti
of these the [apara]lower consists of the study of Rg-Veda,yajurvedam ,sama veda,
Atharva veda, phonetics, the code ofrituals, grammar, etymology, metrics and astronomy. Now the higher knowledge is that by which the imperishable is attained.[para]
[ Here the author of Mundaka takes those to task who are busy all the time doing sacrificial rituals and feels he is doing highest good]
Verily they are frail rafts-these sacrifices with their eighteen members, on which such inferior work(devoid of knowledge) rests. The fools, who acclaim this as the highest good, certainly fall again and again into the domain of old age and death

 Thus we come to know that there are 2 kinds of knowledge apara[rituals and astronomy chiefly] para [ science of spirituality ]. Author of Mundaka wants to convey that para is the one that takes us to highest and not the apara. If somebody is trying to fool you by claiming with the techniques of astronomy and rituals he shall help you reach highest do not believe in him. Infact he calls such people fools.

  I preach only the Upanishads. If you look, you will find that I have never quoted  
 anything but the Upanishads.[Vivekananda]
 After reading these two mundakas we understand why vivekananda has high regards to upanishads. Now i understand tagore's  words "Upanishads are jnana yagna which guided people who were suffering from the blow of rituals".

Upanishads questioned the authenticity of people who claimed rituals etc as supreme and redefined the progress of universe  setting the path towards deciphering truth. No doubt historians say Upanishads and other theories about soul during that time gave rise to new religions like Jainism and Buddhism. Intention of Mundaka author is definitely not to degrade rituals and sacrifices. But to caution us the real truth is something else. [In fact author says rituals are good in verses appearing between 1.1.5 and 1.2.7. But stresses that they do not help us other than enjoying heavenly pleasure once the effect depreciates such people sink down. Thus people who are busy in performing rituals ignoring para  rise and fall continuously.]

Although Masters of Upanishads do not subscribe to different worlds, they use terms e.g heaven etc to mean luxury but at the same time remain generous by not defying theories lurking around heaven, indra, apsara... Modern mind almost has unanimously accepted that the different worlds that come across in hindu scriptures are just diff states of mind or human elevation. Also over time we have come across phrases like "jeena yaha, marna yahan iske siva jana kaha",  "A lie amounts to hell, truth amounts to heaven". Alas priestly class are spreading fear of hell and forcing people to perform rituals, but they never expose us to truth.

who are these eighteen members:
  Generally yagas  involve 16 priests, wife and husband are required.  Mundaka says such sacrifices/ritual are futile.
Preistly class has fallen and breaking their own rules too...
  Recently Sriman Yeddi X CM of karnataka performed Vajapeya yaga, as he has no wife, shobha karandlage sat next to him and completed the yaga. To perform this yaga wife is must according to rules, for earning money priestly class has gone to this extent of breaking their own rules.

 Would Lord Rama have approved rituals in today’s scenario?
a) The Apara knowledge also has grown over time, the physical science has shown that burning anything becomes carbon.
b) With so much hunger around, throwing rice bits, clothe pieces, wooden pieces into fire is unjustifiable, that too when man has gone to the extent of saying save every drop of water..  it’s a sin to do this.
d) Rituals  promoted by priestly class are substandard in nature which promises material desires mostly.
Can you believe to do the same yaga different priests take different remuneration.
e) When priestly class can break their own rules such as "crossing sea"[ that was considered to be sin a century ago] and performing rituals violating rules to aid growth of corrupt politicians e.g. kumaraswamy and yeddi for the sake of money.
 Why can’t they change a ritual from a costly affair to just a simple recitation of mantras. Will any priest come forward and do it. Alas which fool will cut the branch on which he is sitting? Who would block the source of income i.e. coming so easily?
If at all LokaKalyana/welfare of this world is the justification of the rituals as claimed in broader sense, then behaviour of priestly class is not helping.

courtesy:  [ Mundaka upanishad by swami sarvananda , Ramakrishna Mutt] whom i have referred to pick the mundaka verses

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Progress of Rama

In this blog, we see there is a transition from Dutiful Rama->thoughtful->scientific and morally correct Rama which is essentially the progress of society, humanity and thus universe.

Ramayana is one epic which is rewritten by many Greats belonging to different times, here i try to discuss with you 2 authors along side original specifically concentrated on a UttarakhaNda story about shambooka a shudra tapaswi/muni. The part of Ramayana after victory over Ravana/ "Rama's later life" is the UttarakhaNda, some of the stories appearing in original have forced authors to question and do a reconstruction.

Let’s see how each of the below author 's have seen this story in their plays and modifications adapted with passing time...
a) valmiki [Ramayana, Uttara khanda, sanskrit ] b) Bhavabhuti [ Uttararamacharitha,8th century, sanskrit] c) kuvempu writes play "Shudra tapaswi" [ kannada, 20th century]. Read the table in order (original,bhavabhuti, kuvempu) to appreciate the transition

Original story (*passed under) in the name of Valmiki Bhavabuthi renders the heart of real Rama who is thoughtful Kuvempu gives a meaningful reconstruction to shambooka episode
-) This incident takes place after abandoning of seeta by rama.
-) Worried aged vehement Brahmin brings his dead son To rama's palace and accuses him of a dosha, a reason for his son's  premature death.
-) while Rama is discussing this issue with ministers, Narada appears and concludes adharma has happened in his kingdom, because a shudra is performing penance[Tapas] permissible only for the higher castes.
-) Rama goes down south to dandaka, finds Shambooka asks his caste[varna],by the time he completes uttering "shudra' Rama removes the sword strikes his head and  kills him.
-) All the Gods and Goddesses witnessing this dutiful act of Rama,  praise and shower flower on Rama
-) Story is almost same as original but at the end moment when Rama has to go to panchavati to kill the shudra muni in discharge of his duty, outward calm is maintained but while killing feels great pain in his heart knowing it is wrong, he does it just to satisfy the Shasta’s and his people , just as he abandoned seeta for the sake of satisfying his people.
This glimpse into the mind of Rama is a staggering revelation. It shows Rama is not only Dutiful but at the same time thoughtful and worried if he is doing right thing. Still Shambooka loses his life
-) Rama becomes a true advaitist here and asks what is wrong if shudra practices
penance, Brahmin gets into the argument with Rama citing Shastras which say shudra cannot perform penance.
-) Rama says listen to your heart, why we ought to refer to Shastras, all humans are equal.
-) But Still Rama has to be dutiful, so he tries a brahmastra, but pious effect of shambookas penance calms the bramhastra.
-) Brahmastra changes direction & starts following the Brahmin, Brahmin runs for his life and says Hey Rama i agree with you for doing good deeds there is no need of shastric approval we need to be thoughtful and logical.

(Ending in Kuvempu's shudra tapaswi: Rama seeing the transformed Brahmin nullifies the bramhastra. Father, child, shambooka non face death. Greatness is Brahmin undergoes a realisation, nobody dies and all is well.)

Transition of Rama:  Dutiful -> Thoughtful ->  (Dutiful, Thouhtful, scientific and moral)

Rama is becoming Rama [ Last chapter of Ramayana is yet to be written, more we learn, more Rama becomes the Rama ].
Thus Bhavabhuti to some extent, and Kuvempu have introduced bold innovation and recreated Ramakatha in a new form transforming it into a moving human story. With such stands Modern writers like tagore, kuvempu etc stand tall.

Later Propoganada Insertion
  Many conclude that stories such as Ekalavya, shambooka, abandoning seeta etc are a result of later additions to the original Ramayana and are passed under the name of Valmiki inorder to tag shastras as supreme and society needs to adhere to shastras by looking down lower caste people not allowing them to study, do penance etc.... So conscious efforts are made be later authors time and again.  We have to correct ourselves and go forward.

Further Links

Courtesy: To all those authors whom i have referred to write this article.