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Stories and Inspiration

Q) Who is your favourite Captain Planet character? Why? Earth – Kwame, Fire – Wheeler, Wind – Linka, Water – Gi, Heart – Mati

Q) What did Howard Roark inspire?

Forum Topic

Change and Reform

Q) How should criminals be treated? Is reform really possible?

Q) Should capital punishment be abolished?

Forum Topic

Good Living

Q) How do we improve the quality of our lives?

Q) Why should everyone learn programming? Is it simpler than it seems?

Q) What are binaural beats? Can the subconscious really be reprogrammed? What happens when we change our thinking?

Q) What is a Good Country, a Good Community? What’s good about various countries?

Forum Topic

Occult Sciences

Q) Astrology says life is pre-destined. Does destiny control life irrespective of our inactions? If we have to work towards our goal, what’s destiny?

Forum Topic

God and Religion

Q) Does God exist? Whats god’s function? If god exists, why does so much evil and injustice occur in the world? Especially in god’s name?

Q) What dynamic changes does religion need before it becomes universally relevant again?

Q) What is our purpose in life? Are we destined to take birth, grow up, procreate & finally die like animals? Seems true for life at its most basic level

Q) Is there any meaning in prayers? Should I visit the temple, even if I don’t believe in it or god? Is it normal to have these type of self-doubts?

Q) Are affirmations more powerful than prayer? Whats the difference?

Q) Are we evolving into something better? Why, 120 years after the World Parliament of Religions are we still not living in harmony with one another?

Q) Whats the difference between Morality, Idealism, Religion and Yoga? Does AS Dalal explain this well in his book on the meaning of spirituality?

Q) Can one change fate? If Yes, How?

Topic

Newsletter

Launched on Sun, Aug 13 2017, ours is a monthly newsletter edited by Chief Curator Imran. To join you may send us an email to shasa@cselian.com

Topic

Quotes

#2 user1:
  1. You need to learn how to select your thoughts just the same way you select your clothes every day.This is a power you can cultivate - Elizabeth Gilbert
  2. If you judge people ,you have no time to love them - Mother Teressa
  3. One of the best lessopns you can learn in life is to master how to remain calm.

Here are some quotes contributed by various users of this website.


Topic

wellbeing

source: gallup.com

The Five Essential Elements of Wellbeing

For more than 50 years, Gallup scientists have been exploring the demands of a life well-lived. More recently, in partnership with leading economists, psychologists, and other acclaimed scientists, Gallup has uncovered the common elements of wellbeing that transcend countries and cultures. This research revealed the universal elements of wellbeing that differentiate a thriving life from one spent suffering. They represent five broad categories that are essential to most people:

Book

Preparing for the Miraculous

source: aurobindo.ru
link: https://www.amazon.in/Preparing-Miraculous-Georges-Van-Vrekhem-ebook/dp/B007R48OT6/255-4268141-3012756

What is the meaning of our existence in the cosmic scheme?
Is there a divine purpose in life or is it merely the mechanical playing-out of competing “greedy genes”?
Do we live in a blind universe aimlessly running its course from Big Bang to Big Crunch or is there a higher purpose in evolution?
If there is a conscious guiding intent, why does it allow evil to exist?
How do we transcend the limits of a blind “scientism” locking itself out of a vaster understanding by refusing to admit the existence of any factors outside of its self-imposed limits of “scientific” verifiability? Can these questions be tackled without landing in the other extreme of religious dogma?
Is our planet Earth special in the universe?
Do we human beings have a special role in evolution?

The Belgian writer Georges Van Vrekhem explores these and other timeless questions in the light of Sri Aurobindo’s evolutionary concept and casts a refreshing new look on issues that have been the lasting preoccupation of seekers throughout the ages.

This book contains the edited versions of eleven talks that Georges Van Vrekhem gave in Auroville in 2010 and 2011:

• Adam Kadmon and the Evolution
• The Development of Sri Aurobindo’s Thought
• Preparing for the Miraculous
• What Arjuna Saw: the Dark Side of the Force
• 2012 and 1956: Doomsday?
• Being Human and the Copernican Evolution
• Bridges across the Afterlife
• Sri Aurobindo’s Descent into Death
• Sri Aurobindo and the Big Bang
• Theodicy: “Nature Makes no Mistakes”
• The Kalki Avatar.

Book

Beyond Man

source: collaboration.org
link: http://www.beyondman.org/
link: Patterns of the Present
link: Hitler and His God

Review of Beyond Man, from The Awakening Ray, Jan/Feb 1998, p. 34-35. By Carel Thieme.

IF any persons from India’s political history, philosophical thought and spiritual greatness can be labeled as The Great Unknown, they are Sri Aurobindo and The Mother. Few indeed know about Sri Aurobindo’s role as one of the leaders of India’s early independence movement; or of his theory of evolution beyond mankind; or of his and The Mother’s occult action on world events. Even less is their true mission known: to bring down on earth a higher level of consciousness, called by Sri Aurobindo “the Supermind”, in order to make a divine life on earth possible. For, says Sri Aurobindo, “Evolution is not finished; reason is not the last word nor the reasoning animal the supreme figure of Nature. As man emerged out of the animal, so out of man the superman emerges.”

In August 1997, Harper Collins India released Beyond Man, The Life and Work of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother by Georges Van Vrekhem. The book comes as an unexpected, agreeable and timely surprise, in this 125th year of Sri Aurobindo’s birthday and the 50th anniversary of India’s freedom, to which not only Sri Aurobindo but also The Mother have contributed so much.

Georges Van Vrekhem, who lives in Auroville, has been working for six years on this book. He quotes extensively both from the works of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother as well as from the writings by those who have been near to them. The result is a hefty volume of over 500 pages. But its story is gripping and will introduce the reader to the heart of the matter. In fact, the book is so informative and thought -provoking that its length feels rather like a bonus than an ordeal. It has clearly been the aim of the author to write an integral, catholic text about his subject, based on all the documents available.

While reading, one starts to realize how much outward facts are determined
by interventions from other levels of consciousness, for which those facts are only the external appearances and signs. The writer has presented us the biographical material in this context, for instance when explaining Sri Aurobindo’s and The Mother’s occult action on world events. The inclusion of interesting historical, philosophical and spiritual vistas drawn from other sources, has resulted in a richly embroidered tapestry as a background to the exceptional life of the Two-in-One, the “double–poled Avatar of the Supermind” as Van Vrekhem calls Sri Aurobindo and The Mother.

The book reveals the golden thread running through the realization and fulfillment of the work of the double-poled Avatar. Highlights are the explication of the descent of Sri Krishna in Sri Aurobindo’s body on 24 November, 1926; the rationale behind the two World Wars; Sri Aurobindo’s voluntary confrontation with Death; the manifestation of the Supermind on 29 February, 1956, when the aim of the avataric incarnation was fulfilled; and The Mother’s ordeal while going still further and building the archetype of the supramental body.

The author shows that Sri Aurobindo had progressed much farther in his Yoga than is commonly believed. He stresses the relevance of the double-poled Avatar, the One Consciousness incarnated in two bodies, which e.g. made possible that one half of the incarnated Avatar (Sri Aurobindo) could consciously enter death because the other half (The Mother) would remain on earth. He shows The Mother’s acceptance, in her Love for mankind, to venture beyond every known limit for the realization of the supramental body, in an effort that will have shortened the material manifestation of the new species by thousands if not millions of years.

In Beyond Man, the importance of the transitional being, called in French by The Mother “le surhomme” is stressed. The Mother, announcing the descent of the consciousness of the ‘surhomme’ in January 1969, explains that, just as in every other great leap in evolution, this time too transitory beings or races will appear. They, born like all of us from human parents, but manifesting a certain degree of a supramental consciousness, will in turn find the key for the creation of the supramental beings. This important element in the evolution, first described by Sri Aurobindo in ‘The Supramental Manifestation Upon Earth’ and afterwards time and again elaborated upon by The Mother, has rarely been given due attention. It is one of several illuminations in this important book.

It is unavoidable in a book of this magnitude that some prevailing standpoints and opinions on the life and work of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother are being put into question. But Van Vrekhem’s comments are always restrained and worded in a language of moderation. He clearly has been writing in a spirit of understanding, inclusion and construction. His guiding idea seems to have been to consider all Aurobindonians as one family. So doing, Beyond Man shuns no important point or argument, but it is never polemical.

The publishers, Harper Collins Publishers India, have done a fine job and produced a beautiful book that lays lightly and comfortably in the hand. Still, most of the printing errors might have been’ avoided if the proof-reading had been done with more care. It even happens in a couple of sentences that some words have been omitted – and no, Sri Aurobindo did not marry in 1889, but in 1901 – but the book as a whole reads very fluently and pleasantly indeed. The errors will surely be corrected when a second impression is issued – and we hope an index, indispensable for the really interested reader, will then also be included.

Beyond Man is a standard work and a fount of information on the life and work of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother. It is a must for all those who aspire to live in their Light.

Movement

Harmony

Harmony is a movement begun in 2016 at the request of a friend. It aims to make the world a more peaceful place. Support us by registering here and spread this page link with your friends. If mailing, please cc shasa@cselian.com so we know. Feel free to write to us and suggest more prayers and hymns.

We encourage people to pray for world peace twice a day and also to help others and be kind to them. The prayer can take any form. A Hymn, chanting of the Lord’s Prayer or His Name or just this simple one:

Dear God, give man the fortitude to listen to the words of peace and love in his heart and not be swayed by the evil forces that abound in the world around him and incite him to commit acts against the very principles that his religion and beliefs are founded upon.
Grant him the understanding that each man is free to choose his religion, that none is superior to the other, that each man understands the will of God according to his own nature and the truth of his being.
If he must talk of his religion, let it be with an openness to understand his brother’s religion as well, for as Lord Krishna says – All paths lead to me.
Let us hold hands and stand against the spread of ignorance and conflict.
Let us embrace one another and truly accept each other’s faults and limitations as our Lord accepts us.
A minutes silence for contemplation and thoughts for world peace.
Unspoken by Shasa, Nov 2015

Or to put it in the words of Swami Vivekananda (from his closing speech at the World Parliament of Religions, Chicago, 1893:
Assimilation and not Destruction, Harmony and Peace and not Dissension

Speak

Notes on Life

Notes on life by various contributors. See the Nav for more

Person

Khalil Gibran

Born on 6 January 1883 and died on 10 April 1931, Khalil Gibran was an artist, poet and writer. He was born in Lebanon and spent much of his productive life in the United States.

For Khalil Gibran no single religious tradition revealed the whole truth about life so he wove together insights from Eastern Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, American Transcendentalism, and the folklore of his native Lebanon to create his own universal “Anthem of Humanity” … he attacks narrow-mindedness, clerical hypocrisy and political injustice, and issues a declaration of faith in life itself. – Juan R. I. Cole

In truth, The Prophet is a work of such universal appeal that there is little to be gained from speculating on the identity of persons or places represented in it. For Gibran’s purpose was a lofty one, and his belief in the ‘unity of being’, which led him to call for universal fellowship and the unification of the human race, is a message which retains its potency today as do the messages of all great poets. Inspired by his experiences in a country far from the land of his origins, he strove to resolve cultural and human conflict, in the process developing a unique genre of writing, and transcending the barriers of East and West as few have done before or since. He became not only Gibran of Lebanon, but Gibran of America, indeed Gibran the voice of global consciousness: a voice which increasingly demands to be heard in the continuing Age of Anxiety. – Dr. Suheil Bashrui
Quotes about Gibran

Added to YieldMore in 2011, The Prophet is his best known book. See the Garden of the Prophet which was a sequel. Don’t miss the quotes and his piece on liberty.

His chapters on love and marriage make a good read for weddings. Speaking of weddings, don’t miss our very own Shasa’s Gratitude for Partners.

Documentary

Documentaries for Progress

Article

Hour of God

Conversion: 28 Aug 2016
Time: 3h

The Hour of God consists of short prose pieces written between 1910 and 1940 and published posthumously. Those selected for inclusion in this collection satisfy three further criteria. These are:
(1) full development writings more in the nature of notes than of essays have been excluded
(2) completeness – incomplete drafts and fragments have been excluded;
(3) clarity of manuscript – writings that present unusual difficulties of transcription have been excluded.

The texts of all pieces published in the present volume have been checked against Sri Aurobindo’s handwritten
manuscripts.

Details about the texts will be found in notes at the end of the volume. Sanskrit words printed in Devanagiri script are defined in these notes. Transliterated Sanskrit words are defined in a separate glossary.


From the back of the Hour of God by Sri Aurobindo.
ISBN: 978-81-7058-834-4

Man’s greatness is not in what he is but in what he makes possible. His glory is that he is the closed place and secret workshop of a living labour in which supermanhood is made ready by a divine Craftsman.

But he is admitted to a yet greater greatness and it is this that, unlike the lower creation, he is allowed to be partly the conscious artisan of his divine change. His free assent, his consecrated will and participation are needed that into his body may descend the glory that will replace him. His aspiration is earth’s call to the Supramental Creator.

If earth calls and the supreme answers, the hour can be even now for that immense and glorious transformation.


This e-book has been prepared by Auro e-Books, an international project dedicated to e-books on Well-Being and Spirituality.

Discover more e-books and other activities on our website: auro-ebooks.com

First edition 1959
Fifth edition 2006
Second impression 2009
eBook edition 2015

© Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust 1959, 2006
Published by Sri Aurobindo Ashram Publication Department
Website: http://sabda.sriaurobindoashram.org

Program

School

Welcome,

We help organize various activities in schools. With teachers day coming up on Sep 5th in India, the Journal of School Social Work is trying to get children to send their favourite teacher a postcard. For more details, click here.

We also canvas for the Blink Foundation that conducts an interesting change class in schools where college volunteers (Change Agents) look to do away with social differences and promote acceptance, harmony and unity.

For schools, there is also the Pledge Festival organized every Constitution Day (26th November) by the Build India Group.

YieldMore, in 2015, compiled a list of songs (non romantic) to be shared with children. You can also find some on our youtube channel.

Book

Tattvabodha

source: tattvabodha.blogspot.com
source: advaita.org.uk
link: http://www.vedanta.gr/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/SwParam_IntroVedanta-Tattvabodha_ENA4.pdf
link: http://practicalphilosophy.in/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/tattvabodha.pdf
link: http://upanishadtattva.blogspot.in/2010/02/tattva-bodha-by-sri-sri-adhi_26.html
youtube: ynveKp8qmlw

From tattvabodha.blogspot.in
Tattavabodha means Self-Knowledge, which means Knowledge about the real nature of the Self.
* The four fold qualifications which a seeker should be endowed with, without which one will not get the full benefit of learning. 1) Vivekam or discrimination 2) Vairagyam or dispassion 3) six disciplines 4) Mumukshuthvam: Intense desire to get liberated
* The 3 types of body are gross, subtle and causal body
* The 5 sheaths of the body are
* The 3 states of experience
* Nature of Self – sat chit ananda
* Creation – Satvic, Rajasic and Tamasic
* Tat tvam Asi (Jiva and Ishwara)
* Karma and Freedom from Karma

From advaita.org.uk
1. Tattva Bodha is a fundamental text for those desirous of mokSha [freedom from the sense of limitation centered on ‘I’]. Its value is to present succinct definitions of some key terms in vedAnta. The chart isn’t a replacement for reading the text, but is an attempt to present the information graphically so that linkages and levels can be brought out.
Read more …

Article

Lay of Leithian

In The Lays of Beleriand, the third volume of a set of twelve books called The History of Middle-earth, Christopher Tolkien has published fragments of J.R.R. Tolkien’s long poem The Lay of Leithian. One of the versions reached some 4000 verses. This was to be a poem about a mortal Beren and an immortal elf-maiden Luthien whose story is familiar to all who had read The Silmarillion.

This poem never reached its end, because at one point Tolkien decided to start all over again, and the new version also never reached its end. All parts of this story are heavily emended by the author, and in The Lays of Beleriand Christopher Tolkien gives us elaborate explanations about dates, order of writing, reasons for changing certain parts.

Here before you is an attempt of a fan of Tolkien’s work to edit this complicated collection of fragments into a continuous poem. It is meant as a reading for those who have already read Christopher Tolkien’s book, and also for those who haven’t, in order to show them the taste of Tolkien’s poetry.

To those who know the work in its original it will be clear which parts were edited by this fan. Others should bear in mind that many of the names have been changed to make the poem coherent, while some of the characters change their name in the course of development only because some parts are from older and some from the later version, but the changing of those names would have affected the rhyme and the meter. So if the reader feels a desire to understand this work better, they should consider reading the original work, that also contains another epic poem, one about Turin Turambar written in alliterative verse.

Poem

Song of the Rain

Author: Kahlil Gibran
source: allpoetry.com

I am dotted silver threads dropped from heaven
By the gods. Nature then takes me, to adorn
Her fields and valleys.

I am beautiful pearls, plucked from the
Crown of Ishtar by the daughter of Dawn
To embellish the gardens.

When I cry the hills laugh;
When I humble myself the flowers rejoice;
When I bow, all things are elated.

The field and the cloud are lovers
And between them I am a messenger of mercy.
I quench the thirst of one;
I cure the ailment of the other.

The voice of thunder declares my arrival;
The rainbow announces my departure.
I am like earthly life, which begins at
The feet of the mad elements and ends
Under the upraised wings of death.

I emerge from the heard of the sea
Soar with the breeze. When I see a field in
Need, I descend and embrace the flowers and
The trees in a million little ways.

I touch gently at the windows with my
Soft fingers, and my announcement is a
Welcome song. All can hear, but only
The sensitive can understand.

The heat in the air gives birth to me,
But in turn I kill it,
As woman overcomes man with
The strength she takes from him.

I am the sigh of the sea;
The laughter of the field;
The tears of heaven.

So with love –
Sighs from the deep sea of affection;
Laughter from the colorful field of the spirit;
Tears from the endless heaven of memories.

Speak

Assorted

Assorted articles by contributors and well wishers.

Song

Teach Your Children

You, who are on the road must have a code that you can live by.
And so become yourself because the past is just a good bye.
Teach your children well, their father’s hell did slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams, the one they fix, the one you’ll know by.
Don’t you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

And you, of the tender years can’t know the fears that your elders grew by,
And so please help them with your youth, they seek the truth before they can die.
Teach your parents well, their children’s hell will slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams, the one they fix,the one you’ll know by.
Don’t you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

Book

The Silmarillion

youtube: Tolkien in the Classroom

John Ronald Reuel Tolkien is the author of The Silmarillion. It tells of the history of Creation, the trials of the Gods of Ea or Earth, the deeds of Morgoth Bauglir (the Devil), the concept of Eru the Creator who is illimitable, the firstborn (Elves) and the afterborn (Men)

Dubbed “The history of the Elves of the Lord of the Rings”, the Silmarillion took its author almost 50 years to create. Leaf by Niggle best reflects how Tolkien saw this, his life’s work in the grand scale of things.

Tolkien invented a mythology to replace the one England never had. A devout Catholic and scholar of various annals, his views uniquely lend to both schools of thought.

An epic in its own right, some of our curators are undertaking to produce a comparison with other epics that have seeped into culture. Until then, this book by Anne C Petty is a good discussion of its broad swathes and timelessness.

Person

AS Dalal

source: auro-ebooks.com

Moslem by birth, Dr. Dalal was born in Tanzania, moved to the Sri Aurobindo Ashram for seven years, then worked in the U.S. as a psychologist for over two decades before returning to the ashram where he now lives. He has compiled ten books based on the work of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother, and has written two books integrating Sri Aurobindo’s psychological thought with modern psychology.

Books
* Psychology, Mental Health and Yoga
* A Greater Psychology
* Eckhart Tolle and Sri Aurobindo

Compilations (from the works of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother)
* Living Within – The Yoga Approach to Psychological Health and Growth
* The Psychic Being
* Soul – Its Nature, Mission and Evolution
* The Hidden Forces of Life
* Growing Within – The Psychology of Inner Development
* Looking from Within – A Seeker’s Guide to Attitudes for Mastery and Inner Growth
* Powers Within
* Living Words
* Soul Kindlers for the New Millennium
* Our Many Selves
* Practical Yogic Psychology
* Emergence of the Psychic
* Governance of Life by the Soul
* The Yoga of Sleep and Dreams – The Night-School of Yoga
* The God-Touch – And Other Lights from Sri Aurobindo’s Savitri
* Gifts of Grace – Five Aids for Inner Growth
* Morality, Idealism, Religion and Yoga

page

Directory

SNoNameTypeRoleJoinedSites
Writeup
1ImranPersonChief Curator9/1/2011*
Founder and Chief Curator, Imran is the driving force behind this venture. He has ample support from friends, family and many mentors who choose not to be named. A Catholic with a Lutheran Padre, his objective is to symbiose the religions, harmonizing them and lifting the sparkling mountain water from the mud.
2littleblueplanetPersonGaia, Spirit of Fire9/1/2011*
Lightworker whose formed these tattwas: simple living, artist, free thinker, dedicated mother, nurturer, rebel, heart-centered, evolver (that's my made up word for someone who is always evolving), yogi, silent.
3JayanPersonMentor and CoFounder12/1/2013*
Editor in Chief of all content, Jayan also oversees induction of new players and mentors, now from behind the veil.

Click here to see the docs with pictures.

Movement

Islam Means Peace

Truly, the word itself means peace. It spoke of equality and tolerance at a time when tyranny and lawlessness was rampant. Muslim means one who believes in a single God, so all Hindus are muslims. And Muslims dont know that even in the face of a Trinity, there is still only one God. The nihilist only is at a loss to describe Him and the Atheist is only searching for the God in everything, that Cosmic Force or the Divine.

What matters a mans belief? Judgement is for God alone. Our commandments are to always be honest and faithful, do no harm to others and to let others be.

See our facebook group where we are trying to heal conflict between different ethnic groups. If you don’t follow the core YieldMore tenet of open mind, peaceful nature and a quest for progress, please don’t bother to write us.

This page welcomes articles on the universal spirit of Islam, the Legacy of Muhammed and his family, the Ahle Bait.

Movement

Build India

India won its Independance from the British on August 15th 1947 and was finally free to start building a nation in its own image. That of the oldest surviving culture from a previous golden age, at once a synthesis of many diverse cultures and religions.

The Indian Constitution is the longest and took 3 years to frame.

The Build India Group was floated in 2006 and advocates the celebration of Pledge Festival. This is now held on the 26th of November which is Constitution Day. Schools are encouraged to have flag hoisting and to take the pledge which runs as follows:

We the people of India today
Do solemnly pledge ourselves
To the service of our nation
With honesty, sincerity and commitment
Always keeping our nation’s
Interests paramount
In all that we think, do or say,
For the greater glory of this land.

You can see more on the Official BIG Facebook Group.

Also to be recited of course is the Indian National Pledge and the anthem.

The convener of this movement in South India was the Late Professor PJ Naidu, chief editor of the Journal of School Social Work.

This page welcomes articles on the identity of India and its evolution and how Indians should set an example for the betterment of the world.

Topic

Death

Death is the only certainty in life, and the one thing nobody prepares for until it overtakes them nor think about until it claims a loved one.

Leaf by Niggle by Tolkien is an allegorical tale describing life, purgatory and the afterlife. The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran also has a chapter on death. There is also his Dying Man.

A must read is the Tibetan Book of the Dead by WY Evans-Wentz and also the The Tibetan Book of the Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche.

It is said that when the soul dies, it is at first unaware of its death / removal from the physical world. It still perceives the actions of loved ones and feels their pain. It lingers behind trying to communicate with them and reassure them that there is nothing to cry about. We the bereaved need to let them go on their way into the afterlife / purgatory / next life as is our belief.

Recitation

In Vedic thought, we have the Mrintyunjaya (Victory over death) Manthra from the Rig Veda which in Sanskrit is written as
ॐ त्र्यम्बकं यजामहे सुगन्धिंम् पुष्टिवर्धनम् ।
उर्वारुकमिव बन्धनान् मृत्योर्मुक्षीय मामृतात्

Transliteration
Om tryambakam yajāmahe sugandhim puṣti-vardhanam ǀ
urvārukam-iva bandhanā mṛtyormukṣīya māmṛitāat

Translation
OM. We worship the Three-eyed Lord Who is fragrant and Who nourishes and nurtures all beings. As the ripened cucumber (with the intervention of the gardener) is freed from its bondage (to the creeper), may He liberate us from death for the sake of immortality.

Practice

Yoga

link: Hatha Yoga Introduction Slides by Subramanian K

Yoga is a psycho-physiological exercises including body postures, breathing techniques and meditation practices.

There are other aspects of yoga which we will touch upon later.

Article

Quran

link: https://archive.org/details/001AlFaatiha_201403

The Holy Quran is the revealed word of Allah (the God of Islam), brought down by the Angel Gibrail in different parts during the lifetime of Prophet Mohammad.

Poem

If

source: poetryfoundation.org
source: cselian.com
youtube: If read by Shasa
youtube: If read by Dennis Hopper
Poet: Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

Topic

Peace

Peace is an occurrence of harmony characterized by the lack of violence, conflict behaviors and the freedom from fear of violence. Commonly understood as the absence of hostility and retribution, peace also suggests sincere attempts at reconciliation, the existence of healthy or newly healed interpersonal or international relationships, prosperity in matters of social or economic welfare, the establishment of equality, and a working political order that serves the true interests of all.

In India, when we finish a prayer, we say Om Shanthi Shanthi Shanthi. Shanthi means peace. Why say it three times? One for self, one for the surroundings and one for the entire Universe(s).

To quote our about page, these are the concentric circles in which conflict arises: Me, Family (and Friends), Community, Country, Work, Work Ecosystems and finally the Whole World. Problems arise because of conflicts within members of these circles, or at the individual level, between myriad thoughts and beliefs.

When you find peace within yourself, you find it in the world. The world can change upon the acts and faith of a single Individual, there are so many Bright Ones who have done it.

There is no point in reading the news and being upset by every conflict / fight. If you can’t do anything about it, don’t let it enter your psyche and wreak havoc. Think love, not hate. Stand up for Truth and Righteousness(Dharma). Don’t lose spirit.

Quotes

But life at its best is a creative synthesis of opposites in fruitful harmony – Martin Luther King

The rest of the quotes are taken from wikiquote:
* Peace comes from being able to contribute the best that we have, and all that we are, toward creating a world that supports everyone. But it is also securing the space for others to contribute the best that they have and all that they are. – Suu Kyi
* Where there is no justice there can be no secure peace.
* That just laws which uphold human rights are the necessary foundation of peace and security would be denied only by closed minds which interpret peace as the silence of all opposition and security as the assurance of their own power. – Suu Kyi
* If we are serious about peace, then we must work for it as ardently, seriously, continuously, carefully, and bravely as we have ever prepared for war.
* he first peace, which is the most important, is that which comes from within the souls of men when they realize their relationship, their oneness, with the universe and all its powers, and when they realize that at the center of the universe dwells Wakan-Tanka, and that this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us. This is the real peace, and the others are but reflections of this. The second peace is that which is made between two individuals, and the third is that which is made between two nations. But above all you should understand that there can never be peace between nations until there is first known that true peace which is within the souls of men. – Black Elk, One of the Sioux
* The world has achieved brilliance without conscience. Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing than we know about living. If we continue to develop our technology without wisdom or prudence, our servant may prove to be our executioner. – Omar Bradley, Armistice Day speech
* Islam is peace, these terrorists don’t represent peace. They represent evil and war.
(at C, I tire of adding more quotes, but any of you are welcome to edit this article)

Topic

Devotion

Bhakti, Worship, God and Deva redirects here. So do all the Deities / Objects venerated and worshiped.

Bhakti (Sanskrit: भक्ति) literally means “attachment, participation, devotion to, fondness for, homage, faith or love, worship, piety to (as a religious principle or means of salvation)”. Bhakti, in Hinduism, refers to devotion and the love of a personal god or a representational god by a devotee.

Most simply, bhakti refers to the common religious devotion that is held in the heart of a devoted person of any spiritual faith.

Both Islam and Christianity say “thou shalt not have strange gods before me”, but Hinduism always believes in only 1 God*.

* The apparent multiplication of gods is bewildering at the first glance, but you soon discover that they are the same GOD. There is always one uttermost God who defies personification. This makes Hinduism the most tolerant religion in the world, because its one transcendent God includes all possible gods. In fact Hinduism is so elastic and so subtle that the most profound Methodist, and crudest idolater, are equally at home with it. – GB Shaw.

Religion, in its most general view, is such a Sense of God in the soul, and such a conviction of our obligations to Him, and of our dependence upon Him, as shall engage us to make it our great care to conduct ourselves in a manner which we have reason to believe will be pleasing to Him.

Sacrifice is the first element of religion, and resolves itself in theological language into the love of God.

A religiously developed person makes a practice of referring everything to God, of permeating and saturating every finite relation with the thought of God, and thereby consecrating and ennobling it.

I said before, the most beautiful and most profound religious emotion that we can experience is the sensation of the mystical. And this mysticality is the power of all true science. If there is any such concept as a God, it is a subtle spirit, not an image of a man that so many have fixed in their minds. In essence, my religion consists of a humble admiration for this illimitable superior spirit that reveals itself in the slight details that we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble minds. – Albert Einstein

Read more …

Topic

Cosmos

We are not alone in the universe!

Carl Sagan — ‘The universe is a pretty big place. If it’s just us, seems like an awful waste of space.’

Even Islam today accepts Angels taking 50000 years to descend from heaven and says there are many worlds whose inhabitants each believe its the only one in all of creation.

Hinduism believes in Devas and Asuras from Devalok. And then, there are astral planets.

The blue planet project (if I’m remembering this correctly) states that there are 160 types of aliens.

in5d outlines the possible places in the cosmos you may have originated from. Mentioned is Lyra and Pleiades.

Topic

Pledge

source: chinmayadc.org
youtube: Pledge Talks, Swami Mitrananda

We stand as one family
Bound to each other with love and respect.

We serve as an army
Courageous and disciplined
Ever ready to fight against all low tendencies
And false values, within and without us.

We live honestly
The noble life of sacrifice and service
Producing more than what we consume
And giving more than what we take.

We seek the Lord’s grace
To keep us on the path of virtue, courage and wisdom.
May Thy grace and blessings flow through us
To the world around us.

We believe that the service of our country
Is the service of the Lord of lords
And devotion to the people
Is devotion to the Supreme Self.

We know our responsibilities
Give us the ability and courage to fulfill them.

Om Tat Sat

Indian National Pledge, but can be extended to any country / add other pledges here later.

India is my country.
All Indians are my brothers and sisters.
I love my country and, I am proud of it’s rich and varied heritage.
I shall always strive to be worthy of it.
I shall give respect to my parents, teachers and all elders and treat everyone with courtesy .
To my country and my people, I pledge my devotion.
In their well being and prosperity alone, lies my happiness.

Topic

Obstacles

source: chinmayamission.com

“Some act till they meet obstacles, others act in spite of obstacles, and conquer them; but some act not, fearing the possibility of some obstacles that might arise en route.”
– Swami Chinmayananda

The very word OBSTACLE indicates to us the attitude required to overcome obstacles. Invoking these attitudes is to invoke the Ganesha within us –

O – Objective Knowledge – “Knowledge is Power.” Gain functional knowledge and skills in your chosen field. Lack of knowhow poses many obstacles.

B – Broadmindedness – “life, when properly tuned, can round the sharp edges in our character.” In a broader vision of Life in its entirety, obstacles are stepping stones to cultivate an inner perfection and an outer excellence.

S – Sensitivity – “Be like a flower. Give happiness and fragrance to all.” A flower produces fragrance from mud, dirty water, manure, etc.

T – Toughness – “The Suffering depends not on the factual happening but on the texture of one’s mind.” Cultivate a ‘tough’ mind through study of the scriptures, faith in a Higher Reality, value – based life, etc.

A – Alertness – “Alert and vigilant living is a sadhana by itself.” Alertness helps one to foresee the ‘obstacle’ and nip it in the bud.

C – Concentration – “Never complain, about the number of hours you have put in to do a job. How much of you was put into each hour of your daily work ?” The sun’s rays (mind) when unified through a convex lens (concentration), burns away a piece of paper(problems & negativities) below it.

L – Love of God – “Don’t tell God how big your problem is. Tell your problem how big God is.”

E – Enthusiasm – “Real men of achievement are people who have the heroism to fuel more and more enthusiasm in their work when they face more and more difficulties. Be Aggressively good.”

Practice

Prayer

Prayer and Manthra are (seemingly) interchangeable. The idea is to regulate your breathing and focus on the Chit Akash (he inner space where thoughts and emotions come from. When you close your eyes – that is inner space.) This is naturally the location of the third eye where the 2 eyes focus when the eyelids are closed.

Hindu

Gayathri^1 Manthra:
Oh God, the Protector, the basis of all life, Who is self-existent, Who is free from all pains and Whose contact frees the soul from all troubles, Who pervades the Universe and sustains all, the Creator and Energizer of the whole Universe, the Giver of happiness, Who is worthy of acceptance, the most excellent, Who is Pure and the Purifier of all, let us embrace that very God, so that He may direct our mental faculties in the right direction.
Read more …

Topic

Bright Ones

The term was first noted in The Hour of God by Sri Aurobindo and is used by Shasa in Dear Brother. It may refer to:

Artists and Scientists
Authors
Lightworkers (a term I first heard used by Patricia Cori)
Mystics, Prophets and Seers
Yogis and Swamis

Some Examples:
Albert Einstein
Benjamin Franklin
Galileo
Gandhi
George Carlin
Jesus of Nazareth
JRR Tolkien
Mahavatar Babaji
Paulo Coelho
Ramana Maharshi
Robert M Pirsig
Richard Bach
Sri Aurobindo
Sri Yukteswar

and countless, countless other people who have strove so hard for the continuous establishment of the Kingdom of Heaven, a tether to cling on to during the dark ages.

Topic

Religion

Wikipedia: A religion is an organized collection of beliefs, cultural systems, and world views that relate humanity to an order of existence. Many religions have narratives, symbols, and sacred histories that aim to explain the meaning of life, the origin of life, or the Universe.

“Indian religion has always felt that since the minds, the temperaments and the intellectual affinities of men are unlimited in their variety, a perfect liberty of thought and of worship must be allowed to the individual in his approach to the Infinite.” – Sri Aurobindo.

Have I spoken this day of aught else? Is not religion all deeds and all reflection? – Kahlil Gibran. Thou shalt keep thy religion to thyself – George Carlin.

Dear Theist, I hope someday you’ll understand my love for God. It’s no different than my love for Life, and all that is in it. My religion is no different from yours – it’s just that I can understand yours, but you can’t mine. And because you can’t understand it, you don’t think its the same as yours. And since your so sure your’s is correct, you think mine is wrong. Sweetheart, its all the same – religion just means love of life! – Shasa, 2005

We can either approach this new world understanding by clearing away the encrustations of religion, or ignoring it altogether and coming up with new paradigms – Spirituality instead of Religion, and a Cosmic Divine instead of a God. Whatever we call it, man has discovered Liberty, Equality and Freedom and no-one has forgotten the universal message of Love, borne by Krishna, Buddha, Christ and Mohammed. We all have a value system that is becoming more and more accepting and tolerant of one another. – Reconciling Quality, Shasa, Aug 2015

What with the fast-pacedness and our inability to have wholistic, meaningful lives, we’ve allowed ourselves to be influenced by forces we should have heeded not. Let’s unblock ourselves, focus on connecting with the primal forces, the healing energies, the cosmic love. Let’s all agree to leave the bodies of our Churches, Temples and Mosques, when necessary, but to cling more tightly to the spirit of that universal message. – Islam Not Atheism, Shasa, Oct 2013

And this guy has had enough. and he yells at us to stop. But they’ve got him lock stock and barrel. For now he becomes the devil, come to play tricks on us and cheat us of our place in Heaven. at least so they make us believe. – Religious Appeal, Shasa, Feb 2005

At the core of our website is a belief in the universality that exists in all religions. As they passed through the dark ages, these all became encrusted with untruths and have been diluted by unscrupulous people with ulterior motives. As we become one world and continue living in a new Age of Illumination, it falls upon us to remove the crud and learn to live in peace and harmony. Or, to put it in the words of Aurobindo:

THE WORLD abounds with scriptures sacred and profane, with revelations and half-revelations, with religions and philosophies, sects and schools and systems. To these the many minds of a half-ripe knowledge or no knowledge at all attach themselves with exclusiveness and passion and will have it that this or the other book is alone the eternal Word of God and all others are either impostures or at best imperfectly inspired, that this or that philosophy is the last word of the reasoning intellect and other systems are either errors or saved only by such partial truth in them as links them to the one true philosophical cult.

The major surviving religions are (in order of appearance): Hinduism (Vedic Belief or Sanatana Dharma, read as knowledge), Paganism ?, Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity (read as love) and Islam (read as peace).

There are also smaller religions like Sikhism and Jainism which are thought of more as offshoots of Hinduism. Please read this article which throws some light on the caste system in Hinduism.

Our writing is aimed at expounding the core beliefs and helping others understand it from an integration perspective, as Swami Vivekananda puts it: upon the banner of every religion will soon be written in spite of resistance: “Help and not fight,” “Assimilation and not Destruction,” “Harmony and Peace and not Dissension.”

We leave you with some quotes (all prefixed by * are from wikiquote).

* Religion is a great force — the only real motive force in the world; but what you fellows don’t understand is that you must get at a man through his own religion and not through yours. – George Bernard Shaw
* All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man’s life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom. – Albert Einstein
* have you considered any of the other major religions? They’re all pretty much the same.
* Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.
* So many gods, so many creeds — So many paths that wind and wind While just the art of being kind Is all the sad world needs.
* Such religion as there can be in modern life, every individual will have to salvage from the churches for himself.
* Philosophy is questions that may never be answered. Religion is answers that may never be questioned.
* Religion, in its purity, is not so much a pursuit as a temper; or rather it is a temper, leading to the pursuit of all that is high and holy. Its foundation is faith; its action, works; its temper, holiness; its aim, obedience to God in improvement of self, and benevolence to men.
* All noblest things are religious,— not temples and martyrdoms only, but the best books, pictures, poetry, statues, and music.
* Human things must be known to be loved; but Divine things must be loved to be known. – Blaise Pascal

Read more …

Person

Swami Sivananda

wiki: Sivananda Saraswati
link: Divine Life Society
source: sivananda.org
source: sivananda.org
source: biharyoga.net
motto: Serve, Love, Give, Purify, Meditate and Realize

He initiated a LOT of people, including:
* Swami Satyananda^1 whose first mission was to spread yoga from door to door and shore to shore, second mission to Take care of your neighbours as I have taken care of you and third mission of Education.
* Swami Chinmayananda who founded the Chinmaya Mission, a worldwide nonprofit organisation, to spread the knowledge of Advaita Vedanta, the nondual system of thought found in the Upanishads, which epitomizes the philosophical teachings of the Vedas and which operates schools.
* Swami Shantanand whose mission was to promote the arts (music and dance) via the Temple of Fine Arts in Coimbatore, Malaysia and Singapore.

^1 Swami Satyananda founded the Bihar School of Yoga in 1963 and in 1994 gave a new message, of Bhakti Yoga. He said that the purpose of human life is to realize God through love and to serve God by helping humanity. He prophesied that while Hatha Yoga and Raja Yoga were the panacea of the twentieth century, devotion to God and Bhakti Yoga would be the panacea of the twenty-first.

Poem

Song of Myself

source: shmoop.com
wiki: Song of Myself
wiki: Walt Whitman

by Walt Whitman, American Poet, 1855

He didn’t mean in the narrow sense that everyone is or should be like the people living inside the borders of a single country. Nope, for Whitman, “America” was an ideal that anyone could strive for, an ideal of independence, equality, optimism, and brotherly love.

I celebrate myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.

I loafe and invite my soul,
I lean and loafe at my ease . . . . observing a spear of summer grass.

Houses and roof perfumes . . . . the shelves are crowded with perfumes,
I breathe the fragrance myself, and know it and like it,
The distillation would intoxicate me also, but I shall not let it.

The atmosphere is not a perfume . . . . it has no taste of the distillation . . . . it is odorless,
It is for my mouth forever . . . . I am in love with it,
I will go to the bank by the wood and become undisguised and naked,
I am mad for it to be in contact with me.
Read more …

Person

George Carlin

quote: George Carlin
youtube: YieldMore George Carlin Playlist

I’m a modern man, a man for the millennium, digital and smoke-free. A diversified multicultural postmodern deconstructionist. Politically, anatomically, and ecologically incorrect.
Modern Man

I hope were interfered with again by the extraterrestrials and this time they help… I hope they say were going to do another genetic thing to you humans just like we did when we we taught you architecture…when suddenly you could lift stones up and build the pyramids…when suddenly you had mathematics and many other things…were going to do that again and this time were gonna help you folks…I hope that happens because then all those dreams that I dont quite have for humanity would come true, and that would be the best surprise that I could get.
Alien Interference

1) Thou shalt always be honest and faithful to the provider of thy nookie.
2) Thou shalt try real hard not to kill anyone, unless of course they pray to a different invisible man than you.
3) Thou shalt keep thy religion to thyself.
The Ten Commandments

I became a sun-worshipper. Several reasons. First of all, I can see the sun, okay? Unlike some other gods I could mention, I can actually see the sun. I’m big on that. If I can see something, I don’t know, it kind of helps the credibility along, you know? So everyday I can see the sun, as it gives me everything I need; heat, light, food, flowers in the park, reflections on the lake, an occasional skin cancer, but hey. At least there are no crucifixions, and we’re not setting people on fire simply because they don’t agree with us.
Sun Worship

I don’t understand why prostitution is illegal. Selling is legal. Fucking is legal. Why isn’t selling fucking legal? You know, why should it be illegal to sell something that’s perfectly legal to give away? I can’t follow the logic on that one at all! Of all the things you can do, giving someone an orgasm is hardly the worst thing in the world. In the army they give you a medal for spraying napalm on people! In civilian life you go to jail for giving someone an orgasm! Maybe I’m not supposed to understand it…

Book

Curious Lives

link: https://pankajdewan.wordpress.com/2010/03/20/
author: Richard Bach

Possibly the most simple, beautiful and most inspiring book ever written. Richard Bach, author par excellence!

Will be back with quotes in time, but I STRONGLY ENCOURAGE you to buy yourself a copy, read it and then gift it away.

The book is divided into 5 novellas. Each a call to action and license to dream!

Shamrock

A young bright detective whose latest case takes her to the very history of her civilization to find that the famous courtesies of Avedoi Merek were actually written only when they were on the brink of total annhilation from war.

The Courtesies

  1. Whatever harm I would do to another, I shall do first to myself.
  2. As I respect and am kind to myself, so shall I respect and be kind to peers, to elders, to children.
  3. I claim for others the freedom to live as they wish, to think and believe as they will. I claim that freedom for myself.
  4. I shall make each choice and live each day to my highest sense of right.

Budgeron and Danielle

An author and his wife. He strives to write that one classic written for adults, only to find his true gift is in writing stories for children (kits). But in the end he finds that the meaning is timeless and valuable to adults to0.

Bethany

First Ensign, later Captain, Bethany represents whats best in Sea Ferret Rescue, commanding a small crew aboard J101 – Resolute. Their bond only tightens when Chloe, a musician and writer comes on board and she shares a mystical experience with her when they decide to put their lives on the line to rescue all the disks from USS Explorer.

Monty and Cheyenne

The heartwrenching story of a horse-whisperer and his Hollywood starlet friend. How their sense of highest right keeps them apart, though their love remains true till the end.

Stormy and Strobe

The story of 2 pilots and how their angel ferrets have to wrestle their stubbornness to bring them together so they can change the future for a whole generation of children.

page

Spirit

To understand the spirit in which this site is built, we refer to the words of the Mother when describing Auroville:

There should be somewhere upon earth a place that no nation could claim as its sole property, a place where all human beings of goodwill, sincere in their aspiration, could live freely as citizens of the world, obeying one single authority, that of the supreme Truth; a place of peace, concord, harmony, where all the fighting instincts of man would be used exclusively to conquer the causes of his suffering and misery, to surmount his weakness and ignorance, to triumph over his limitations and incapacities; a place where the needs of the spirit and the care for progress would get precedence over the satisfaction of desires and passions, the seeking for pleasure and material enjoyments.

Read more …

Movement

Sharing Love

This is a movement started in 2015 by Shasa.

We try an share anything we love, with love.

We believe in a concept called standing on the shoulders of giants, the giants of history with vision and compassion for their fellow man.

We encourage our members to think of their audience and not to say anything provocative or too radical. That’s why its qualified “with love”.

Its a part of the thousand loving movements, first mentioned in Dear Brother

Speak

Shasas Speeches

These are a collection of speeches by Shasa, the voice of YieldMore.org

His first was at the Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Seattle, Sunday Nov 17th 2013. He sang a few lines of Cliff Richard’s Sing a Song of Freedom (coinciding with Father Gary’s talk about the word of God). Then read out his Poem Amore and read a few lines from the Wall By Kansas. This was also the first public declaration of the purpose of Yield More.

Second was at a cousin’s wedding reception in Bangalore on the 31st of Jul 2015. Just a reading of Gratitude for Partners followed by a few quotes.

Incubate

Essays to a Swan

Shasa is the pseudonym of me, Imran. An African bushman (San) word for Good Water, Michel Shasa de Thiry Courtney is a character from The Burning Shore and Power of the Sword.

Essays to a Swan was conceived circa 2013 though some of its essays are older.

Swan, for that is the translation of Hamsa, the ‘royal swan’ of the soul that floats in the cosmic ocean, beholding both its body and the ocean as manifestations of the same Spirit. And its also a play on Soham.

My older work can be seen here (pre 2016). Divine, Dear Brother and Charted are some of my most inspired ones.

In 2016, I began writing short pieces of blank verse and in 2017, to make them rhyme. These are listed below. Prose I began writing again in 2017 August and these can be found here.

Vol I

  1. Amore / Love – March 2004
  2. Thank you (to God) – Saturday, 26 March 2016
  3. Sara (2 lovers) – 13 April 2016 (thought of 20 Nov 2015)
  4. Wishes – Birthday wishes, Nov 2016
  5. Sandra (girl and boy) – Nov 2016
  6. Mother – 12 Nov 2016
  7. Son – 19 Nov 2016
  8. Sasha / Teacher – 15 Dec 2016
  9. Ebbs and Flows – 23 Dec 2016
  10. Infants – 31 Dec 2016 – for N
  11. Hope – 31 Dec 2016
  12. Brother – 31 Dec 2016

Vol 2 (Jan – Mar 2017)

  1. Cousins – 14 Jan 2017 – For SA
  2. Mentors – 15 Jan 2017 – for Jayan
  3. Nature – 22 Jan 2017
  4. Muse – Male – 22 Jan 2017
  5. Doing – 4 Feb 2017
  6. Friends (rhymes) – 8 Feb 2017 – For S
  7. Love – 11 Feb 2017
  8. Teeming with Life – 12 Mar 2017
  9. The path to God – 12 Mar 2017
  10. Dauntless – for Bethany Nikka – 18 Mar 2017
  11. Perfection (rhymes) – 19 Mar 2017
  12. Acres Wild (rhymes) – 19 Mar 2017

Vol 3 (Mar 2017 – July 2017) – Rhymes

  1. A friendly Nod – 25 Mar 2017
  2. Wistfulness (rhymes – alternately) – 25 Apr 2017
  3. Touched (by His hand) – 3 Jun 2017
  4. Cycle – 3 Jun 2017
  5. Inspire – 3 Jun 2017 – for Uma
  6. Eros – 19 Jun 2017 – for B
  7. Mademoiselle (French, doesnt rhyme) – 23 June 2017
  8. Tether – 15 Jul 2017 – for SS
  9. Sivam – 23 Jul 2017 – for Uma’s Father Sivaraman
  10. Once (partly rhymes) – 25 Jul 2017 – for F
  11. Light – 25 Jul 2017 – for F
  12. Glimmer – 29 Jul 2017 – for S

Vol 4 (Aug 2017 – ) – All Rhyming unless mentioned otherwise

  1. Friends II – 6 Aug 2017 – for Veena and Rahul
  2. Notables – 6 Aug 2017 – For Tolkien et al.
  3. Striving – 7 Aug 2017

I also have now, 4 prayers.

Person

Jiddu Krishnamurti

wiki: Jiddu Krishnamurti
quote: Jiddu Krishnamurti

To have compassion means to have passion for all things, not just between two people, but for all human beings, for all things of the earth, the animals, the trees, everything the earth contains. When we have such compassion we will not despoil the earth as we are doing now, and we will have no wars.

Truth is a pathless land (dissolution speech):
You may remember the story of how the devil and a friend of his were walking down the street, when they saw ahead of them a man stoop down and pick up something from the ground, look at it, and put it away in his pocket. The friend said to the devil, “What did that man pick up?” “He picked up a piece of Truth,” said the devil. “That is a very bad business for you, then,” said his friend. “Oh, not at all,” the devil replied, “I am going to let him organize it.

Truth cannot be brought down, rather the individual must make the effort to ascend to it.

If an organization be created for this purpose, it becomes a crutch, a weakness, a bondage, and must cripple the individual, and prevent him from growing, from establishing his uniqueness, which lies in the discovery for himself of that absolute, unconditioned Truth.

I am concerning myself with only one essential thing: to set man free. I desire to free him from all cages, from all fears, and not to found religions, new sects, nor to establish new theories and new philosophies.

Of what use is it to have thousands who do not understand, who are fully embalmed in prejudice, who do not want the new, but would rather translate the new to suit their own sterile, stagnant selves?

You want to have your own gods-new gods instead of the old, new religions instead of the old, new forms instead of the old-all equally valueless, all barriers, all limitations, all crutches… when I say all these things are unnecessary, when I say that you must put them all away and look within yourselves for the enlightenment, for the glory, for the purification, and for the incorruptibility of the self

The only spirituality is the incorruptibility of the self which is eternal, is the harmony between reason and love… I want therefore to set man free, rejoicing as the bird in the clear sky, unburdened, independent, ecstatic in that freedom.

Again, you have the idea that only certain people hold the key to the Kingdom of Happiness. No one holds it. No one has the authority to hold that key. That key is your own self, and in the development and the purification and in the incorruptibility of that self alone is the Kingdom of Eternity.

But those who really desire to understand, who are looking to find that which is eternal, without beginning and without an end, will walk together with a greater intensity, will be a danger to everything that is unessential, to unrealities, to shadows. And they will concentrate, they will become the flame, because they understand.

Topic

The Individual

link: Man the Microcosm
youtube: Inherit the Wind 1960
link: Inherit the Wind Quotes

We are all made in God’s image. The individual human, in all his glory…

As is believed, as in the macrocosm, so in the microcosm (see auromere link at top):

“It is necessary to remember the fundamental principle of the Tantra Sastra that man is a microcosm (kshudra-brahmanda). Whatever exists in the outer universe exists in him. All the Tattvas and the worlds are within him and so are the supreme Shiva-Shakti. The body may be divided into two main parts, namely the head and trunk on one hand, and the legs on the other. In man, the centre of the body is between these two, at the base of the spine where the legs begin. Supporting the trunk and throughout the whole body there is the spinal cord. This is the axis of the body, just as Mount Meru is the axis of the Earth. Hence man’& spine is called Meru-danda, the Meru or axis-staff. Read more …

—-
I will let Spencer Tracy say his piece (see youtube link):

An idea is a greater monument than a cathedral. And the advance of man’s knowledge is a greater miracle than all the sticks turned to snakes or the parting of the waters.

Then why did God plague us with the capacity to think? Mr. Brady, why do you deny the one faculty of man that raises him above the other creatures of the earth? The power of his brain to reason.

Can’t you understand? That if you take a law like evolution and you make it a crime to teach it in the public schools, tomorrow you can make it a crime to teach it in the private schools? And tomorrow you may make it a crime to read about it. And soon you may ban books and newspapers…
AR – Brady on the Stand

If the Lord wishes a sponge to think, it thinks! Therefore, let us all accept the divine in others and leave them to their own nature and ways. If we can offer another point of view without intentionally hurting, but in a spirit of love, then do it, else Silence is Golden.

—-
George Carlin:

No matter how you care to define it, I do not identify with the local group. Planet, species, race, nation, state, religion, party, union, club, association, neighborhood improvement committee; I have no interest in any of it. I love and treasure individuals as I meet them, I loathe and despise the groups they identify with and belong to.

Illustrative of the disparity between static and dynamic. The system can die only when all the individuals are independently good.

Topic

Vegetarianism

link: http://hinduism.stackexchange.com/a/112
link: http://www.thealternativedaily.com/why-i-gave-up-being-vegetarian/

2017:

But most importantly, when I do eat meat, I choose meat that has nothing to do with the awful practices of the factory farming industry. – Katherine Marko, thealternativedaily.com

2015: Being vegetarian is a personal choice. It should be decided not because killing is wrong. Killing plants too is wrong. Its a matter of what your priorities are. Avoiding rajasic and tamasic food is only important for people who are trying to increase their sattwa.

But since you must kill to eat, and rob the young of its mother’s milk to quench your thirst, let it then be an act of worship,
And let your board stand an altar on which the pure and the innocent of forest and plain are sacrificed for that which is purer and still more innocent in many.
When you kill a beast say to him in your heart,
“By the same power that slays you, I too am slain; and I too shall be consumed. For the law that delivered you into my hand shall deliver me into a mightier hand.
Kahlil Gibran on Eating and Drinking in The Prophet

Which is the same thing being said on stackexchange (see link above) – you must offer it up as a sacrifice to your God. So if you do the same with animals, then its OK.

So again, coming back to priorities:

But the disciples of the saints have as their chief aim and effort in life to rise above the animal plane and to unfold their spiritual powers. Hence they must not eat that which will pull them down to the animal level.
karma and the vegetable diet

That being said, by rearing animals, we are creating opportunities for their souls to take birth and evolve. So in a way, we are speeding up the evolutionary process. So, its a dicey question and the truth is, look at the pros and cons, and let your heart decide.

Book

I Am That

I AM THAT

Dialogues of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

That in whom reside all beings and who resides in all beings, who is the giver of grace to all, the Supreme Soul of the universe, the limitless being — I am that.

Amritbindu Upanishad

That which permeates all, which nothing transcends and which, like the universal space around us, fills everything completely from within and without, that Supreme non-dual Brahman — that thou art.

Sankaracharya

The seeker is he who is in search of himself.

Give up all questions except one: ‘Who am I?’ After all, the only fact you are sure of is that you are. The ‘I am’ is certain. The ‘I am this’ is not. Struggle to find out what you are in reality.

To know what you are, you must first investigate and know what you are not.

Discover all that you are not — body, feelings thoughts, time, space, this or that — nothing, concrete or abstract, which you perceive can be you. The very act of perceiving shows that you are not what you perceive.

The clearer you understand on the level of mind you can be described in negative terms only, the quicker will you come to the end of your search and realise that you are the limitless being.

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

Person

Swami Vivekananda

youtube: TlwZNmgFBWM
wiki: Swami Vivekananda
The present convention, which is one of the most august assemblies ever held, is in itself a vindication, a declaration to the world of the wonderful doctrine preached in the Gita: “Whosoever comes to Me, through whatsoever form, I reach him; all men are struggling through paths which in the end lead to me.”
Introduction speech at the World Parliament of Religions, 1893
If the Parliament of Religions has shown anything to the world, it is this: It has proved to the world that holiness, purity and charity are not the exclusive possessions of any church in the world, and that every system has produced men and women of the most exalted character. In the face of this evidence, if anybody dreams of the exclusive survival of his own religion and the destruction of the others, I pity him from the bottom of my heart, and point out to him that upon the banner of every religion will soon be written in spite of resistance: “Help and not fight,” “Assimilation and not Destruction,” “Harmony and Peace and not Dissension.”
Concluding speech at the World Parliament of Religions, 1893
Song

Short And Sweet

source: azlyrics.com
youtube: MucasL7aA0k

You ask what is the quality of life?
Seeking to justify the part you play
And hide, fearing it incomplete
To try to make it any more or less than short and sweet

But short, short is from you to me
As close as we are wont to try to make it be
We’re caught watching the dark in the sky
Who knows, helpless as time itself to hold the time of day

And you, you are a fantasy
A view from where you’d like to think the world should see
Be true and you will likely find
A few building a vision new and justice to our time

And we, we, the immoral men
We dare, naked and fearless in the elements
And free, carefree of tempting fate
Aware and holding off the moral nightmare at the gates

And sweet, sweet as a mountain stream
We’ll look toward a new day breaking in the east
We’ll meet as every future dream unfolds
And surely quality that is the very least

Person

Swami Shantanand Saraswati

freepdf: paulmason.info
wiki: Shantananda Saraswati
link: http://satsangwithswamiji.com

Meditation

His thoughts on meditation have been moved under the topic meditation

Atman and Param-Atman

Atman is universal, constant, all pervasive, light and conscious. All that is not Atman is limited, unstable or transitory, partial, heavy, dark and not conscious. With Viveka (discrimination between what is real and unreal, between the permanent and the impermanent) one sees Atman everywhere in everything at all times. A wise man, one with Viveka, treats everyone as himself and sees the Self in everyone. He is always awake, just, full of love and happiness all the time.
We do not see or understand that the changes take place in our nature and not in Atman. Atman is not subject to change. One who understands this becomes very light and walks in freedom without carrying the load of the world. He is one who enjoys the drama in its true sense and never associates himself with the characters of the drama. Our job is simply to watch and enjoy.

The Absolute is the embodiment of love, knowledge and devotion. It is limitless in every sense and its door is always open. The universe is one and full of love and everything is motivated by love. Let love flow without hindrance from any direction.
To be able to acquire universal grace constantly all one needs to do is to keep one’s inner door open, open in the direction of the Absolute. The universal grace of the Absolute permeates the universe so it is available all the time. If the memory of the universal grace is kept alive, then it forms a connection and
allows one to be receptive to grace all the time.

Good Qualities

The collection of good qualities is essential. The good qualities are these: (1) One should always love to speak the truth so that there is no disparity between what one thinks, what one says and what one does. There should be complete correspondence between ideas with activities. (2) Cultivate the love of people, encouraging them in turn to express their love through certain types of activity. (3) Be magnanimous in dealing with those around you.
There is a Sanskrit verse which says that, if one learns to understand that one is part of the universe and one has equal status with everyone else, then give to others what you would like given to you. What pleases you should be made available for the pleasure of others – or do as you would be done by!
We should cultivate the habit of never thinking of the defects of others, nor our own. Our attitude should be to overlook and ignore them. Let good thoughts prevail.
It is quite possible to get for a few pence a copy of the Bhagavad Gita, which holds the philosophy of liberation, but the essence and truth and knowledge of the Bhagavad Gita cannot be bought even for a million rupees. That truth or knowledge is only available if one practices three-fold work. The first is trust, faith. With faith one should prepare oneself and take to the work, in service of the Absolute. The second is the sincerity with which one attends to the work or knowledge which is being given, and one tries to understand and put the whole thing into practice again and again. The third is discipline to gain
control over the senses and the mind. Control over the senses and the mind is essential, otherwise the disciplines are lost in due course.
Through your beneficial and holy efforts, let your own fullness see the fullness of the Param-Atman, and let the practice, the practitioner and the object of practice merge together to form a single identity.
Then the world as such disappears and the Param-Atman appears in its place.

True Freedom

A man who owns a small estate, on acquiring a bigger one, feels freer because he can manipulate more resources than he was used to. But this is not real freedom. Real freedom is achieved by realizing that you are one with Truth, Consciousness and Bliss and so not attached or identified with anything at all. That is true freedom.
The mind is never satisfied with what it has, and always desires something quite different. While a poor man envies the comforts of the rich and wants to be rich too, a rich man is weary of his anxieties and envies the carefree sleep of one who has nothing. A sick man worries about getting well, only making his sickness worse, while a man in good health worries that he may get ill. The mind also has a tendency to live more in the past and the future than the present. This combination of dissatisfaction with the present and the perpetual desire for something different in the future causes perpetual unhappiness.
The remedy is to see, with the eye of true knowledge, the same thing in everything, and that same thing is Param-Atman. Then the outlook becomes balanced and unified, unrest giving place to tranquility.

True Renunciation

The creation is such that everything has a purpose and must fulfill its function; so it must keep circulating, it must be used. Use everything, and give up the idea that you are renouncing. Don’t hold on to anything in this creation; that can only be done by this final renunciation of giving up the idea that you have anything. In fact, you have nothing. Everything is of the Absolute, everything is permeated by the Absolute; you use whatever you need, and the rest simply belongs to Him. This is true renunciation.
True knowledge is made available to everyone, to show that all this beauty is really the creation of your own Self. It is free to be enjoyed and to give the bliss which is what you really want. Don’t attach yourself to anything because, the moment you do, the bliss will disappear. The creation is totally free; there is no bondage whatsoever. You can appreciate everything in this creation and be happy. You need not be attached and miserable, trying to be free. You are free and you are made free, and a free man knows that everyone is free.
What we have to give up is the desire to benefit from our actions – and not the actions themselves. If we give up actions but continue to indulge in desires, then we would be simply pretending to give up.
Before undertaking an action, an ordinary worldly man always tries to assess what benefit would accrue to him as a result. But a Realized Man undertakes it as a matter of duty, with no desire for its consequential benefits.
We should bear in mind that, whatever the Creator has given to the world, He has “given it up” to the world. He no longer asserts any ownership over it. We also should cultivate the habit of using and enjoying it as His gift and not our own property. This attitude will correct our evil tendencies, and then the practice of devotion or meditation will begin to bear fruit.
Attachment means to consider as ours what really belongs to God. Our body, our house, our wealth, our sons, etc. Give up this feeling and you rid yourself of all your troubles. Do not think that the world around you is insubstantial. Rather it is your feeling of attachment to it that is insubstantial. Whatever is
happening around you is right. What is wrong about it is the view you are taking of it. If you could correct your viewpoint, you would be happy.
We must carry the idea that we own nothing. Everything has now become God’s; we are using everything with His permission, and not as owners. This helps with the elimination of the individual ego – then the pure realization of the Self develops.
Giving up can be done mentally and intellectually at all times and in all conditions. In this, there is no question of today or tomorrow, or of one or two days a week. Practice giving up all the time. You must consider the body, the mind and the intellect as belonging to the Param-Atman, and as offering all these to Param-Atman. This is what giving up means.

Death

The following teachings from the Bhagavad Gita tell us how to deal with death: (1) Forget the past. Do not fear the future either. Devote the present to Param-Atman. A devotee of Param-Atman never perishes;
2) for two half-hour periods of meditation a day, give up all duties and obligations; surrender yourself completely to the single care and protection of Param-Atman. He will save you from all evil consequences, and therein would lie the end of all your worries.
3) One who sees Param-Atman in everybody and everything in Param-Atman – to him Param-Atman never becomes obscure and he never becomes obscure to Param-Atman.
We fear death because, under the influence of Maya, we have forgotten our Selves. And it is this forgetting of the divine Self which makes for us all the troubles we get. It is not God who is the maker of our troubles.
After constant meditation and work on oneself, the adept starts to realize that a man is not just flesh and bones: he has a soul, he has consciousness, and he is bliss. When he has realized this fully, everything becomes simple for him. Whatever he does, the way he moves, the way he talks, reflects the dignity of Atman, which is pure consciousness and bliss.
In one of the scriptures it says, “This body is only flesh and bones; cease to be attached to it.” Transfer your attachment to the Atman. Because Atman is part of the Param-Atman, there is no difference between the two. Both are able to cut worldly bondages.
Being part of the Absolute, the individual is fundamentally all knowledge, fundamentally all joy. Surrendering oneself to God removes illusion. Then True knowledge dawns and we realize there is no death for us, that no knowledge is hidden from us and that the fullest joy is always with us. The Present
There is a Sanskrit verse in which it is said, “The Absolute is here in the present. See, enjoy and communicate with Him, and do not bother your head with the past or the future.” You cannot bring the past to life, you cannot tailor the future as you want. Both things are beyond the control of the individual, so we should not bother our head least about the past and the future. With the memory of the Absolute we should try to make use of the present with all the glorious things that the Absolute offers in the present moment. The present is always lit, because it is the presence of the Absolute, and the light of the Absolute falls on the present. There is nothing to worry about or fear in the present. Past and future are very dark, and that is where the fears are, and it is only fears of some sort that drag individuals to the past or future. Whenever you find that we are travelling towards the darkness of the past or future, come into the light of the day – the light of the present. It has been observed in the scriptures that the wise man behaves like a child, not that his actions are childish, but because of his wisdom he is alive to the present. The child is neither bothered by the past nor does it hanker for the future. The wise man who behaves like a child is always filled with bliss. He is not influenced by the deeds of the past or by expectations of the future. He is always in bliss and free.

Darkness and Light

There can be no darkness without light. Do not be afraid of the darkness, there is light beyond it. If there is total darkness, then even a small light will shine out. But when the place is completely illuminated, the small light appears very insignificant, almost negligible. When you feel you are lost in darkness, this creates fear, but do not be afraid, because there is light shining beyond it. Have full faith in it – that there is light and that will remove your fear completely.
If we give some time to reading holy books, some time to thinking of Param-Atman, then our wisdom matures; darkness no longer frightens us, and we attain supreme happiness. Not only this, but we begin to radiate happiness, which affects our surroundings as well as those around us.

Resolve

In the end it is up to the individual to decide once and for all that he is going to love only the truth and leave the rest. And he must stand by it. Only then is transformation possible

Topic

Ages

wiki: Golden Age
youtube: The yugas of Sri Yukteswar
link: The Holy Science
youtube: Tide of Time

In Greek history, we have the Ages (see wiki link). In the Vedic culture, we have the Yugas. The Kali yuga (Iron Age), Dwapara yuga (Bronze Age), Treta yuga (Silver Age) and Satya yuga (Golden Age) correspond to the four Greek ages.

It is commonly (and erroneously) believed that the current is the Iron age / Kali yuga / age of decline.

The The yugas of Sri Yukteswar (see link) as described in his book The Holy Science (see link) states that the Dwapara Yuga (Silver Age) began in 1700AD.

This idea is reinforced by Jaggi Vasudev’s Tide of Time (see link)

[user]Imran[/user]: Belief in an Age is important – do you accept a more enlightened and glorious past? Do you think this is an age of decline? If you accept this as D315 (year 315 of the Dwapara Yuga), then your outlook on life and where the world is heading has to be optimistic!

Speak

Imran’s Essays

Started in August 2017 with the exception of copyfight, this is a collection of essays written by founder Imran.

Song

Lady In Black – Uriah Heep

youtube: hHDZ5rYiMz0
link: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/uriahheep/ladyinblack.html
Lyrics is provided for inspirational/educational use only.

She came to me one morning
One lonely Sunday morning
Her long hair flowing in the midwinter wind
I know not how she found me
For in darkness I was walking
And destruction lay around me
From a fight I could not win

Ahh Ahh Ahh, Ahh Ahh Ahh Ahh

She asked me name my foe then
I said the need within some men
To fight and kill their brothers
Without thought of love or God
And I begged her give me horses
To trample down my enemies
So eager was my passion
To devour this waste of life

Ahh Ahh Ahh, Ahh Ahh Ahh Ahh

But she wouldn’t think of battle that
Reduces men to animals
So easy to begin
And yet impossible to end
For she’s the mother of all men
Who counselled me so wisely then
I feared to walk alone again
And asked if she would stay

Oh lady lend your hand outright
And let me rest here at your side
Have faith and trust in peace she said
And filled my heart with life

There’s no strength in numbers
Have no such misconception
But when you need me
Be assured I won’t be far away

Ahh Ahh Ahh, Ahh Ahh Ahh Ahh

Thus having spoke she turned away
And though I found no words to say
I stood and watched until I saw
Her black cloak disappear
My labour is no easier
But now I know I’m not alone
I’ll find new heart
Each time I think upon that windy day

And if one day she comes to you
Drink deeply from her words so wise
Take courage from her as your prize
And say hello from me

Ahh Ahh Ahh, Ahh Ahh Ahh Ahh

Song

The Wall – Kansas

youtube: vHk_Emakefg
link: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/kansas/thewall.html
Please note as the azlyrics link says, “The Wall” lyrics provided for educational purposes and personal use only.

I’m woven in a fantasy,
I can’t believe the things I see
The path that I have chosen now has led me to a wall
And with each passing day I feel a little more like something dear was lost

It rises now before me,
A dark and silent barrier between,
All I am, and all that I would ever want to be
It’s just a travesty,
Towering, marking off the boundaries my spirit would erase

To pass beyond is what I seek,
I fear that I may be too weak
And those are few who’ve seen it through to glimpse the other side,
The promised land is waiting like a maiden that is soon to be a bride

The moment is a masterpiece,
The weight of indecision’s in the air
Standing there,
The symbol and the sum of all that’s me
It’s just a travesty,
Towering, blocking out the light and blinding me
I want to see

Gold and diamonds cast a spell,
It’s not for me, I know it well
The riches that I seek are waiting on the other side
There’s more than I can measure in the treasures of the love that I can find

And though it’s always been with me,
I must tear down the wall and let it be
All I am, and all that I was ever meant to be,
In harmony
Shining true and smiling back at all who wait to cross
There is no loss

Practice

Meditation

youtube: Swami Niranjananda, Bihar School of Yoga
link: How to Meditate – Sue FitzMaurice
link: online meditation
link: Satyam Yoga Trust, Chennai
link: artofliving.org
link: wikihow
link: Buddhist Meditations
link: Vipassana Meditation (10 day silence courses)
link: quora

Everyone has atleast heard the word. We leave the links above to explain and the thoughts of people in the nav (on the left / top).

Documentary

Vedic Cosmology

youtube: Vedic Cosmology – Mysteries of the Sacred Universe
source: vedskaakademija.yolasite.com

Mysteries of the Sacred Universe
Richard L Thompson

In Conclusion (from the pdf)
For centuries the cosmology of the Bhagavatam has seemed incomprehensible to most
observers, encouraging many people either to summarily reject it or to accept it literally with
unquestioning faith. If we take it literally, the cosmology of the Bhagavatam not only differs from
modern astronomy, but, more important, it also suffers from internal contradictions and violations of
common sense. These very contradictions, however, point the way to a different understanding
of Bhagavatacosmology in which it emerges as a deep and scientifically sophisticated system of
thought. The contradictions show that they are caused by overlapping self-consistent interpretations
that use the same textual elements to expound different ideas.

Each of the four interpretations I’ve presented deserves to be taken seriously because each is
supported by many points in the text that are consistent with one another while agreeing with modern
astronomy. I’ve applied the context-sensitive or multiple-aspect approach, in which the same subject
has different meanings in different contexts. This approach allows for the greatest amount of
information to be stored in a picture or text, reducing the work required by the artist or writer. At the
same time, it means that the work cannot be taken literally as a one-to-one model of reality, and it
requires the viewer or reader to understand the different relevant contexts. This can be difficult when
knowledge of context is lost over long periods of time.

Practice

Reiki

wiki: Reiki
link: Treatment Guide
link: http://heal.yieldmore.org/systems/reiki/

Reiki is a form of alternative medicine developed in 1922 by Japanese Buddhist Mikao Usui. Since its beginning in Japan, Reiki has been adapted across varying cultural traditions. It uses a technique commonly called palm healing or hands-on-healing. Through the use of this technique, practitioners believe that they are transferring “universal energy” through the palms of the practitioner, which they believe encourages healing.

Reiki postulates the existence of a universal energy unknown to science and thus far undetectable surrounding the human body, which practitioners can learn to manipulate using their hands.

Imran: Well, science hasn’t yet gotten around to explaining consciousness any many other fundamental miracles of nature. Even if its only a placebo, man has shown time and again the power to heal is largely in the mind. See brainsync for example.

Practice

Mudras

source: artofliving.org
source: healbymudra.wordpress.com

A lesser known, more subtle and independent branch of yoga is Yoga Tatva Mudra Vigyan – yoga mudras.

Entirely distinct and based on the principle of Ayurveda, yoga mudras are understood as a healing modality. The Sanskrit word mudra is translated as gesture or attitude. A mudra may involve the whole body or could be a simple hand position. Mudras used in combination with yogic breathing exercises enliven the flow of prana in the body by stimulating different parts of the body involved with breathing. Relating directly to the nerves, mudras create a subtle connection with the instinctual patterns in the brain and influence the unconscious reflexes in these areas. The internal energy is in turn balanced and redirected, affecting change in the sensory organs, glands veins and tendons. This adds a completely new dimension to the yoga experience.

wiki: Mudra

In the 20th and 21st centuries, the yoga teacher Satyananda Saraswati, founder of the Bihar School of Yoga, continued to emphasize the importance of mudras in his instructional text Asana, Pranayama, Mudrā, Bandha..

Jñāna Mudrā

The Jñāna mudrā (“mudra of wisdom”) is done by touching the tips of the thumb and the index together, forming a circle, and the hand is held with the palm inward toward the heart.

Prana Mudra

Prana mudra can be performed in both hands place the tips of thumb, ring finger and little finger together. Other fingers remain stretched.

Person

Sri Aurobindo

source: en.wikiquote.org
source: sriaurobindoashram.org
wiki: Sri Aurobindo
link: http://sriaurobindoashram.org
link: http://yieldmore.org/authors/sri-aurobindo/
link: Integral Yoga
link: Overman Foundation
link: http://cselian.com/blog/?s=aurobindo
link: All Publications, from Russia with love
link: FB Writings of Sri Aurobindo

Sri Aurobindo is no visionary. He has always acted his dreams. So from individual self-discipline he has gone to the life of humanity. The Psychology of Social Development, Ideals and Progress and The Ideal of Human Unity should be carefully considered by all those who are busy preparing blue-prints for the future.
Times Literary Supplement [London]

Man’s greatness is not in what he is but in what he makes possible. His glory is that he is the closed place and secret workshop of a living labour in which supermanhood is made ready by a divine Craftsman.

But he is admitted to a yet greater greatness and it is this that, unlike the lower creation, he is allowed to be partly the conscious artisan of his divine change. His free assent, his consecrated will and participation are needed that into his body may descend the glory that will replace him. His aspiration is earth’s call to the supramental Creator.

If earth calls and the supreme answers, the hour can be even now for that immense and glorious transformation. – Hour of God

Evolution is not finished; reason is not the last word nor the reasoning animal the supreme figure of Nature. As man emerged out of the animal, so out of man the superman emerges.

A significant stage in evolution is often marked by a recrudescence of all that has to go OUT of evolution

Look up, O Child of the ancient Yoga, and be no longer a trembler and a doubter; fear not, doubt not, grieve not; for in your apparent body is One who can create and destroy worlds with a breath. – power supreme, Isha Upanishad

Book

Smith of Wootton Major

Wiki: Smith of Wootton Major
Author: JRR Tolkien

The village of Wootton Major was well-known around the countryside for its annual festivals, which were particularly famous for their culinary delights. The biggest festival of all was the Feast of Good Children. This festival was celebrated only once every twenty-four years: twenty-four children of the village were invited to a party, and the highlight of the party was the Great Cake, a career milestone by which Master Cooks were judged. In the year the story begins, the Master Cook was Nokes, who had landed the position more or less by default; he delegated much of the creative work to his apprentice Alf. Nokes crowned his Great Cake with a little doll jokingly representing the Queen of Faery. Various trinkets were hidden in the cake for the children to find; one of these was a star the Cook discovered in the old spice box.

The star was not found at the Feast, but was swallowed by a blacksmith’s son. The boy did not feel its magical properties at once, but on the morning of his tenth birthday the star fixed itself on his forehead, and became his passport to Faery. The boy grew up to be a blacksmith like his father, but in his free time he roamed the Land of Faery. The star on his forehead protected him from many of the dangers threatening mortals in that land, and the Folk of Faery called him “Starbrow”. The book describes his many travels in Faery, until at last he meets the true Queen of Faery. The identity of the King is also revealed.

The time came for another Feast of Good Children. Smith had possessed his gift for most of his life, and the time had come to pass it on to some other child. So he regretfully surrendered the star to Alf, and with it his adventures into Faery. Alf, who had become Master Cook long before, baked it into the festive cake once again for another child to find. After the feast, Alf retired and left the village; and Smith returned to his forge to teach his craft to his now-grown son.

Book

The Snowgoose

wiki: The Snow Goose: A Story of Dunkirk
author: Paul Gallico
youtube: The Snow Goose (1971)

The Snow Goose is a simple, short written parable on the regenerative power of friendship and love, set against a backdrop of the horror of war. It documents the growth of a friendship between Philip Rhayader, an artist living a solitary life in an abandoned lighthouse in the marshlands of Essex because of his disabilities, and a young local girl, Fritha. The Snow Goose, symbolic of both Rhayader (Gallico) and the world itself, wounded by gunshot and many miles from home, is found by Fritha and, as the human friendship blossoms, the bird is nursed back to flight, and revisits the lighthouse in its migration for several years. As Fritha grows up, Rhayader and his small sailboat eventually are lost in the British retreat from Dunkirk, having saved several hundred men. The bird, which was with Rhayader, returns briefly to the grown Fritha on the marshes. She interprets this as Rhayader’s soul taking farewell of her (and realizes she had come to love him). Afterwards, a German pilot destroys Rhayader’s lighthouse and all of his work, except for one portrait Fritha saves after his death: a painting of her as Rhayader first saw her—a child, with the wounded snow goose in her arms.

Organization

Institute of Noetic Sciences

source: noetic.org
link: vision
link: join
link: tell your story

The Institute of Noetic Sciences serves an emerging movement of globally conscious citizens dedicated to manifesting our highest capacities. We believe that consciousness is essential to a paradigm shift that will lead to a more sustainable world. We encourage open-minded explorations of consciousness through the meeting of science and spirit. We take inspiration from the great discoveries of human history that have been sourced from insight and intuition and that have harnessed reason and logic for their outer expression. It is our conviction that systematic inquiries into consciousness will catalyze positive concrete transformations in the world. In this process, our vision is to help birth a new worldview that recognizes our basic interconnectedness and interdependence and promotes the flourishing of life in all its magnificent forms.

Song

Rock Music

Just select the text, right click and search for the song. azlyrics is good too.

  • A great day for freedom – Pink Floyd
    • Now frontiers shift like desert sands
      While nations wash their bloodied hands
      Of loyalty, of history, in shades of grey
  • Closer to believing – Emerson Lake and Palmer
    • Take me closer to believing
      Take me forward lead me on
      Through collision and confusion
      While there’s life beneath the sun
  • Don’t let it show – Alan Parsons Project
    • Even if you feel you’ve got nothing to hide,
      Keep it inside of you.
      Don’t give in,
      Don’t tell them anything.
      Don’t let it-
      Don’t let it show.
  • I love a rainy night – Dan Seals
    • I love to hear the thunder
      Watch the lightning
      When it lights up the sky
      You know it makes me feel good
  • Imagine – John Lennon
    • Imagine there’s no countries
      It isn’t hard to do
      Nothing to kill or die for
      And no religion too
  • It’s all right here – Jim Messina
    • I’ve read of men who travel far within themselves
      They seek the light for their direction
      They spend their whole lives searching for that inner space
      To bring them closer to perfection.
  • My life – Billy Joel
    • I don’t care what you say anymore, this is my life
      Go ahead with your own life and leave me alone
  • Short and sweet – David Gilmour
    • Be true and you will likely find
      A few building a vision new and justice to our time
  • Teach your children – Crosby Stills Nash and Young
    • And you, of the tender years can’t know the fears that your elders grew by,
      And so please help them with your youth, they seek the truth before they can die.
  • Wasted on the way – Crosby Stills Nash and Young
    • So much love to make up everywhere you turn
      Love we have wasted on the way
Program

Instrumental Enrichment

source: acd.icelp.info

Instrumental Enrichment (IE) is a cognitive intervention program that can be used both individually and in within the classroom. The IE program has been successfully used worldwide as a tool for the enhancement of learning potential and cognitive functioning of children and adults. For individuals with special needs, IE is used as a remidiation program; for higher functioning learners, IE is an enrichment tool. To date, the IE program has been successfully used in the following frameworks;

Enrichment programs for underachieving, regular and gifted children

Learning enahncement programs for immigrant and cultural minority students

Remedial programs for special needs children

Cognitive rehabilitation of brain injured individuals and psychiatric patients

Professional training and retraining programs in the industrial, military and business sectors

IE as a classroom curriculum is aimed at enhancing students’ cognitive functions necessary for academic learning and achievement. The fundamental assumption of the program is that intelligence is dynamic and modifiable, not static or fixed. The IE program seeks to correct the deficiencies in fundamental thinking skills, provides students with the concepts, skills, strategies, operations and techniques necessary to function as independent learners, increase their motivation, develop metacognition – in short, to “learn how to learn.”

IE materials are organized into 14 different instruments that comprise of paper and pencil tasks aimed at such specific cognitive domains as analytic perception, orientation in space and time, comparison, classification and more. Deliberately free of specific subject matter, the IE tasks are intended to be more readily transferable to all educational and everyday life situations. The IE materials and teacher manuals have received worldwide recognition and have been translated into 17 languages including all major European and some Asian languages. In addition, there is a Braille version of the IE tools for blind learners.

Program

Brainsync – Kelly Howell

source: youtube.com
youtube: The Secret Universal Mind Meditation
link: Refer Affiliates

Clicking this banner will help YieldMore get a commission when a purchase is made. This money will be donated to some charity or other.

BRAINSYNC meditation CDs and guided imagery techniques are proven to significantly improve mental performance. In two decades, nearly 3 million Brain Sync users have experienced the powerful benefits of deep meditation to accelerate healing, learning, recovery and personal growth. Brain Sync brainwave technology blends advanced meditation techniques with harmonically layered binaural beat frequencies.

“Whatever your quest in life, whatever your goals and dreams may be, the Brain Sync experience provides an immediate and clear path to change.” – Kelly Howell

Will expand this page shortly, one of our curators is working on it.

  • The Secret Universal Mind
  • Create Success
  • Healing Meditation
  • Ultimate Abundance System
  • The Secret To Attracting Wealth / Attract Wealth Subliminal
  • Awakening Kundalini (the power centers that run along your spine and control everything)
  • Clear Wave Creativity / Increase Creativity
  • High Focus
  • Slim Naturally
Article

Illusions

freepdf: img1.liveinternet.ru
youtube: Imran reading Letting go from the introduction

Imagine the universe beautiful and just and perfect,
the handbook said to me once.
Then be sure of one thing: the Is has imagined it quite a bit better than you have.

You said that depending on people to care about what I say is
depending on somebody else for my happiness. That’s what I
came here to learn: it doesn’t matter whether I communicate or not. I
chose this whole lifetime to share with anybody the way the world
is put together and I might as well have chosen it to say nothing at
all. The Is doesn’t need me to tell anybody how it works.

Quotes

Chapter 9

The days blurred one into another. We flew as always, but I had stopped counting summer by the names of towns or the money we earned from passengers. I began counting the summer by the things I learned, the talks we had when flying was done, and by the miracles that happened now and then along the way to the time I knew at last that they aren’t miracles at all.

Read more …

Book

Problem of Rebirth

In these essays Sri Aurobindo looks at the significance of rebirth in the light of its role in the spiritual evolution of humanity and as a way to help answer man s questions about the purpose and aim of his existence. He also explains the deeper levels of truth behind the theory of karma (the consequences of one s past moral conduct) and discusses the concepts of freedom, justice, and will and consequence as part of a wider understanding of karma.

Letter

letter from a parent to a teacher

He will have to learn, I know, that all men are not just, all men are not true.
But teach him also that for every scoundrel there is a hero;
that for every selfish Politician, there is a dedicated leader
Teach him for every enemy there is a friend.

Steer him away from envy,

If you can, teach him the secret of quiet laughter.

Let him learn early that the bullies are the easiest to lick
Teach him, if you can, the wonder of books
But also give him quiet time to ponder the eternal mystery of birds in the sky,
bees in the sun, and the flowers on a green hillside.

In the school teach him it is far honourable to fail than to cheat
Teach him to have faith in his own ideas, even if everyone tells him they are wrong
Teach him to be gentle with gentle people, and tough with the tough.

Try to give my son the strength not to follow the crowd when everyone is getting on the band wagon
Teach him to listen to all men
but teach him also to filter all he hears on a screen of truth,
and take only the good that comes through.

Teach him if you can, how to laugh when he is sad
Teach him there is no shame in tears,

Teach him to scoff at cynics and to beware of too much sweetness
Teach him to sell his brawn and brain to the highest bidders

but never to put a price-tag on his heart and soul.

Teach him to close his ears to a howling mob and to stand and fight if he thinks he’s right.
Treat him gently, but do not cuddle him, because only the test of fire makes fine steel.

Let him have the courage to be impatient
let him have the patience to be brave.
Teach him always to have sublime faith in himself,
because then he will have sublime faith in mankind.

This is a big order,
but see what you can do
He is such a fine little fellow,
my son!

Person

Ramana Maharshi

wiki: Ramana Maharshi

Forty Verses on Reality

Happiness is your nature.
It is not wrong to desire it.
What is wrong is seeking it outside
when it is inside.
Nearly all mankind is more or less unhappy
because nearly all do not know the true Self.
Real happiness abides in Self-knowledge alone.
All else is fleeting.
To know one's Self
is to be blissful always.
...Bliss is not something to be got.
On the other hand you are always Bliss.
This desire [for Bliss] is born of the sense of incompleteness.
To whom is this sense of incompleteness?
Enquire. In deep sleep you were blissful.
Now you are not so.
What has interposed between that Bliss and this non-bliss?
It is the ego.
Seek its source and find you are Bliss.
Wanting to reform the world without discovering one's true self is like trying to cover the world with leather to avoid the pain of walking on stones and thorns. It is much simpler to wear shoes.

From `Happiness and God's Grace'
by Ramana Maharshi

We loosely talk of Self-realization, for lack of a better term. But how can one realize or make real that which alone is real? All we need to do is to give up our habit of regarding as real that which is unreal. All religious practices are meant solely to help us do this. When we stop regarding the unreal as real, then reality alone will remain, and we will be that.
Nobody doubts that he exists, though he may doubt the existence of God. If he finds out the truth about himself and discovers his own source, this is all that is required.
That inner Self, as the primeval Spirit,
Eternal, ever effulgent, full and infinite Bliss,
Single, indivisible, whole and living,
Shines in everyone as the witnessing awareness.
That self in its splendour, shining in the cavity of the heart
This self is neither born nor dies,
Neither grows nor decays,
Nor does it suffer any change.
When a pot is broken, the space within it is not,
And similarly, when the body dies the Self in it remains eternal.
Every living being longs always to be happy, untainted by sorrow; and everyone has the greatest love for himself, which is solely due to the fact that happiness is his real nature. Hence, in order to realize that inherent and untainted happiness, which indeed he daily experiences when the mind is subdued in deep sleep, it is essential that he should know himself. For obtaining such knowledge the inquiry 'Who am I?' in quest of the Self is the best means."

-The Collected Works of Sri Ramana Maharshi
(Page 39, Samuel Weiser Edition 1977)

Sri Ramana Maharshi
Read Forty Verses On Reality > >
by Ramana Maharshi, translated by Arthur Osborne.

Happiness is your nature.
It is not wrong to desire it.
What is wrong is seeking it outside
when it is inside.

Photo by: John Nordstrand. Visit his website at: epicphotos.com
Back to Words of Wisdom

It is false to speak of realisation. What is there to realise?
The real is as it is always. We are not creating anything new or
achieving something which we did not have before. The illustration
given in books is this. We dig a well and create a huge pit. The
space in the pit or well has not been created by us. We have just
removed the earth which was filling the space there. The space
was there then and is also there now. Similarly we have simply
to throw out all the age-long samskaras [innate tendencies] which
are inside us. When all of them have been given up, the Self will
shine alone.

-"Be As You Are"
The Teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi
Edited by David Godman
Reality is simply the loss of ego. Destroy the ego by seeking its identity. Because the ego is no entity it will automatically vanish and reality will shine forth by itself.

-'Be As You Are',
The Teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi
Edited by David Godman
"God dwells in you, as you, and you don't have to 'do' anything to be God-realized or Self-realized, it is already your true and natural state." Just drop all seeking, turn your attention inward, and sacrifice your mind to the One Self radiating in the Heart of your very being. For this to be your own presently lived experience, Self-Inquiry is the one direct and immediate way."
Sri Ramana Maharshi
Read Forty Verses On Reality > >
by Ramana Maharshi, translated by Arthur Osborne.

Happiness is your nature.
It is not wrong to desire it.
What is wrong is seeking it outside
when it is inside.

Photo by: John Nordstrand. Visit his website at: epicphotos.com
Back to Words of Wisdom

It is false to speak of realisation. What is there to realise?
The real is as it is always. We are not creating anything new or
achieving something which we did not have before. The illustration
given in books is this. We dig a well and create a huge pit. The
space in the pit or well has not been created by us. We have just
removed the earth which was filling the space there. The space
was there then and is also there now. Similarly we have simply
to throw out all the age-long samskaras [innate tendencies] which
are inside us. When all of them have been given up, the Self will
shine alone.

-"Be As You Are"
The Teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi
Edited by David Godman
There is no greater mystery than this, that we keep
seeking reality though in fact we are reality. We
think that there is something hiding reality and that
this must be destroyed before reality is gained.
How ridiculous! A day will dawn when you will laugh
at all your past efforts. That which will be the day
you laugh is also here and now.
Relative knowledge pertains to the mind and not to the Self. It is therefore illusory and not permanent. Take a scientist, for instance. He formulates a theory that the Earth is round and goes on to prove it on an incontrovertible basis. When he falls asleep the whole idea vanishes; his mind is left a blank. What does it matter whether the world remains round or flat when he is asleep? So you see the futility of all such relative knowledge. One should go beyond relative knowledge and abide in the Self. Real knowledge is such experience, and not apprehension by the mind.

-"Talks with Ramana Maharshi"
Sri Ramana Maharshi
Read Forty Verses On Reality > >
by Ramana Maharshi, translated by Arthur Osborne.

Happiness is your nature.
It is not wrong to desire it.
What is wrong is seeking it outside
when it is inside.

Photo by: John Nordstrand. Visit his website at: epicphotos.com
Back to Words of Wisdom

It is false to speak of realisation. What is there to realise?
The real is as it is always. We are not creating anything new or
achieving something which we did not have before. The illustration
given in books is this. We dig a well and create a huge pit. The
space in the pit or well has not been created by us. We have just
removed the earth which was filling the space there. The space
was there then and is also there now. Similarly we have simply
to throw out all the age-long samskaras [innate tendencies] which
are inside us. When all of them have been given up, the Self will
shine alone.

-"Be As You Are"
The Teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi
Edited by David Godman
Reality is simply the loss of ego. Destroy the ego by seeking its identity. Because the ego is no entity it will automatically vanish and reality will shine forth by itself.

-'Be As You Are',
The Teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi
Edited by David Godman
You and I are the same.
What I have done is surely possible for all.
You are the Self
now and can never be anything else.
Throw your worries to the wind,
turn within and find Peace.
We loosely talk of Self-realization, for lack of a better term. But how can one realize or make real that which alone is real? All we need to do is to give up our habit of regarding as real that which is unreal. All religious practices are meant solely to help us do this. When we stop regarding the unreal as real, then reality alone will remain, and we will be that.
'I exist' is the only permanent self-evident experience of everyone. Nothing else is so self-evident as 'I am'. What people call self-evident, that is, the experience they get through the senses, is far from self-evident. The Self alone is that. So to do self-enquiry and be that 'I am' is the only thing to do. 'I am' is reality. I am this or that is unreal. 'I am' is truth, another name for Self.

-"Be As You Are"
The Teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi
Edited by David Godman
"Heart" is merely another name for the Supreme Spirit,
because He is in all hearts.

The entire Universe is condensed in the body,
and the entire body in the Heart.

Thus the Heart is the nucleus of the whole Universe.
Your own Self-Realization
is the greatest service you can
render the world.
You and I are the same.
What I have done is surely possible for all.
You are the Self
now and can never be anything else.
Throw your worries to the wind,
turn within and find Peace.
Short Story

Leaf By Niggle

Conversion: 8 Jan 2013
Time: 3h
Wiki: Leaf by Niggle
Source: scribd.com

Niggle’s yearnings after truth and beauty (God’s creations) are echoed in his great painting; after death, Niggle is rewarded with the realization (the making-real) of his yearning. Or, if you prefer, Niggle’s Tree always existed – he simply echoed it in his art

A religious reading of Leaf by Niggle could lead to the conclusion that the allegory of “Leaf by Niggle” is life, death, purgatory and paradise

“Leaf by Niggle” is often seen as an allegory of Tolkien’s own creative process, and, to an extent, of his own life.

Plot 1

In this story, an artist, named Niggle, lives in a society that does not much value art. Working only to please himself, he paints a canvas of a great Tree with a forest in the distance. He invests each and every leaf of his tree with obsessive attention to detail, making every leaf uniquely beautiful. Niggle ends up discarding all his other artworks, or tacks them onto the main canvas, which becomes a single vast embodiment of his vision.

However, there are many mundane chores and duties that prevent Niggle from giving his work the attention it deserves, so it remains incomplete and is not fully realized.

At the back of his head, Niggle knows that he has a great trip looming, and he must pack and prepare his bags. Also, Niggle’s next door neighbour, a gardener named Parish, is the sort of neighbour who always drops by whining about the help he needs with this and that. Moreover, Parish is lame and has a sick wife, and honestly needs help — Niggle, having a good heart, takes time out to help.

And Niggle has other pressing work duties that require his attention. Then Niggle himself catches a chill doing errands for Parish in the rain.

Eventually, Niggle is forced to take his trip, and cannot get out of it. He has not prepared, and as a result ends up in a kind of institution, in which he must perform menial labour each day.

In time he is paroled from the institution, and he is sent to a place ‘for a little gentle treatment’. But he discovers that the new country he is sent to is in fact the country of the Tree and Forest of his great painting, now long abandoned and all but destroyed (except for the one perfect leaf of the title which is placed in the local museum) in the home to which he cannot return — but the Tree here and now in this place is the true realization of his vision, not the flawed and incomplete form of his painting.

Niggle is reunited with his old neighbour, Parish, who now proves his worth as a gardener, and together they make the Tree and Forest even more beautiful. Finally, Niggle journeys farther and deeper into the Forest, and beyond into the great mountains that he only faintly glimpsed in his painting.

Long after both Niggle and Parish have taken their journeys, the lovely field that they built together becomes a place for many travelers to visit before their final voyage into the Mountains, and it earns the name “Niggle’s Parish.”

Article

Vishnu Sahasranamam

Conversion: 19 Aug 2011
Time: 4h
Wiki: Vishnu sahasranama
Source: astrojyoti.com
source: cselian.com

A Stotram in praise of Lord Vishnu, it enumerates a thousand qualities (or names) of Him.

Merits

Believers in the recitation of the Sahasranama claim that it brings unwavering calm of mind, complete freedom from stress and brings eternal knowledge. A translation of the concluding verses (Phalasruti) of Vishnu sahasranama, state the following: “Nothing evil or inauspicious will befall a man here or hereafter who daily hears or repeats these names.. Whichever devoted man, getting up early in the morning and purifying himself, repeats this hymn devoted to Vasudeva, with a mind that is concentrated on Him, that man attains to great fame, leadership among his peers, wealth that is secure and the supreme good unsurpassed by anything. He will be free from all fears and be endowed with great courage and energy and he will be free from diseases. Beauty of form, strength of body and mind, and virtuous character will be natural to him…. One who reads this hymn every day with devotion and attention attains to peace of mind, patience, prosperity, mental stability, memory and reputation…. Whoever desires advancement and happiness should repeat this devotional hymn on Vishnu composed byVyasa….Never will defeat attend on a man who adores the Lotus-Eyed One (Kamala Nayana), who is the Master of all the worlds, who is birthless, and out of whom the worlds have originated and into whom they dissolve. – Source: wikipedia

Background

Soon after the death of Duryodhana, Yudhisthira was coroneted as the king. Though the war was over, Bheeshma was still lying on the bed of arrows as he vowed to leave this world only when the kingdom of Hastinapur is safe. Knowing this, immediately after the coronation, Yudhisthira, accompanied by Lord Krishna and his brothers, went to Bheeshma. Before leaving his mortal body, Bheeshma gives a long discourse to Yudhisthira on various aspects of life and Dharma. After listening to everything, Yudhisthira wants to know if there is any one thing through which one can achieve all; and Bheeshma prescribes the Vishnusahasranama stotra. The first 13 stanzas are the dialog between Yudhisthira and Bheeshma. The next three stanzas are the customary Dhyana verses. – Source: astrojyoti.com
Article

Jonathan Livingston Seagull

Conversion: 2 Feb 2012
Time: 2h
Wiki: Jonathan Livingston Seagull

The book tells the story of Jonathan Livingston Seagull, a seagull who is
bored with the daily squabbles over food. Seized by a passion for flight,
he pushes himself, learning everything he can about flying, until finally
his unwillingness to conform results in his expulsion from his flock. An
outcast, he continues to learn, becoming increasingly pleased with his
abilities as he leads an idyllic life.

One day, Jonathan is met by two gulls who take him to a “higher plane of
existence” in that there is no heaven but a better world found through
perfection of knowledge, where he meets other gulls who love to fly. He
discovers that his sheer tenacity and desire to learn make him “pretty
well a one-in-a-million bird.” Jonathan befriends the wisest gull in this
new place, named Chiang, who takes him beyond his previous learning,
teaching him how to move instantaneously to anywhere else in the
Universe. The secret, Chiang says, is to “begin by knowing that you have
already arrived.” Not satisfied with his new life, Jonathan returns to
Earth to find others like him, to bring them his learning and to spread
his love for flight. His mission is successful, gathering around him
others who have been outlawed for not conforming. Ultimately, the very
first of his students, Fletcher Lynd Seagull, becomes a teacher in his
own right and Jonathan leaves to teach other flocks.

Article

Bhagavad Gita

About

பகவத் கீதை

SRIMAD BHAGAVADGITA
भगवद् ग़ीता

krishna_and_arjuna
Explanation & Commentary by
swami_paramarthananda
SWAMI PARAMARTHANANDA

His Holiness Swami Paramarthananda, disciple of His Holiness Dayananda Saraswati studied Vedanta and Sanskrit under him for a period of three years at Sandeepany Sadhanalaya, Mumbai. After his studies and initiation he came to Chennai and started teaching Bhagavad-Gita, Upanishads and other Vedantic texts. He has been conducting several weekly classes in different parts of Chennai since 1978. He is well read in the sastras and is a great Sanskrit scholar. His talks are known for their clarity, simplicity and are an excellent guide for practical use of Vedantic truths in daily life. The Bhagavad-Gita described here is the transliteration of his popular lectures given at Bala-Vidya Mandir School in Gandhinagar, Adyar, Chennai - 20

Gita Dhyanam

MEDITATIONS - PRAYER - GITA DHYANAM
ॐ पार्थाय प्रतिबोधितां भगवता नारायणेन स्वयं
व्यासेनग्रथितांपुराणमुनिनामध्ये महाभारतम्
।अद्वैतामृतवर्षिणीं भगवतिमष्टादशाध्यायिनीं
अम्ब त्वामनुसन्दधामि भगवद् गीते भवद्वेषिणीम्

Om parthaya prathibhothitham bagavada narayanena swayam
Vyasena grathitham puranamunina madye mahabaratham /
Advaithamrithavarshineem bagavatheemastadasadyayineem
Amba thvam anusandadhami Bhagavatgeethe bhavadveshineem // 1

Om - Om (The monosyllable, indicative of Supreme Brahman), parthaya prati bodhitam - with which Partha ( Arjuna ) was enlightened,baghavata - by the Lord, narayanena - Narayana svayam - himself, vyasena - by Vyasa himself, grathitam - incorporated, purana munina - by the ancient Muni, madhye mahabharatam - in the midst of Mahabharata, advaita amritha var shinim - the showerer of the nectar of Advaita, bhagavatim - the divine Mother, ashtadasa adhyayinim - in the form of eighteen chapters, amba - affectionate Mother, tvam - Thee, anusandadhami - I meditate, bhagavadgite - O! Bhagavad Gita, bhavadveshinim - destroyer of rebirth.

Bagavad Gita
is the essence of the entire Veda. It begins with nine Dyana Slokas; the author being Sri Madhusudhana Sarasvathi. He has also written a commentary on Bhagavad-Gita - Goodartha deepika - throwing light on hidden meaning.

Thro' these nine slokas he offers four `Namaskaras'- 1.Salutation to Bhagavad Gita, where Gita is personified as the Universal Mother (2 verses), 2. Salutation to Mahabharata as Bhagavad-Gita is an integral part of Mahabharata. (1 verse), 3. Salutation to Vyasacharya, - also known as Krishna Dwaipayana. He is the author of Mahabharata including the Gita. 1 verse 4.Salutation to Lord Krishna who taught Gita to Arjuna. (5 verses)

1. Gita Namaskar
: bagavat gite ambha thvam anusanthatami - Oh ! Mother Bagavad Gita, I meditate upon you and I offer my namaskars to you. What is the glory of the Gita? This is described in the first three lines. - Parthaya pratibothitam- systematically communicated or taught to Partha (Arjuna) - Pritha putra or Kunthi putra. Pritha means big hearted, generous. Arjuna was successful in the material front; but this did not help him at the time of crucial emotional challenge of loosing all his kith and kin in the Kurukshetra battle field. Hence he thought that he should strengthen himself. Emotional strength can be achieved only by Spiritual knowledge given by Bhagavata Narayanena - Lord Narayana himself, who is the Adi Guru. This knowledge was not taught by any ordinary local person; but by the Adiguru himself by taking the incarnation as Sri Krishna. Vyasacharya captured the dialogue between Sri Krishna and Arjuna - vyasena grathitam - incorporated by Vyasa, purana munina - who is an ancient sage having written many Puranas (18 puranas and 18 Upapuranas) in the middle of Mahabharata.-madye mahabharatham; Advaita amritha varsinim - showerer of the nector of Advaitha. The central teaching of Bhagavad-Gita is the knowledge of the ultimate reality behind the individual, the world, and the Sara - Jeeva, Jagat, and Iswara thatvam.That thatvam happens to be one and the same like the water which is behind the wave and the ocean. - The Advaita -non dual is infinite truth. This Knowledge is Amritham. It gives happiness and leads to immortality - freedom from fear of death and insecurity. - in the form of eighteen chapters - I meditate (anusandadhami) upon Amba - loving mother bhagavathi - divinity personified.- Sarasvathi Devi herself, who has to feed me with milk of Wisdom (Karmayoga - liquid Milk, Upasana Yoga - semisolid, Jnana Yoga - Solid food) This spiritual knowledge make me grow up inwardly. Bhavadvesinim - destroyer of birth, antidote or medicine for bhava (samsara) roga - constant struggle to become somebody else - emotional self dissatisfaction. Bagadvad Gita teaches us to be athmanyeva athmana thusta: We do not do anything for satisfaction but with satisfaction. This is called Liberation. Bagavad Gita is the only medicine for this. Daily we have to do parayanam of Bagavad Gita, Rudram, Purusha Suktam, Visnu Sahasranamam etc.
5th September 04


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Sarvopanisado gavo dogdha gopala nandanah /
Partho vatsah sudhir bhokta dugdham gitamrtam mahat //

Sarvopanishado - all the Upanishads, gavaha - the cows, dogdha - the milker, gopalanandana - Krishna, the cowherd boy, parthah - Partha, vatsaha - the calf, sudhihi - men of purified intellect, bokta - the drinkers, dugdham - the milk, gita - Gita, amirtham - nectar, mahat - the supreme.

All the Upanishads are the cows, the son of the cowherd is the milker; Partha (Arjuna) is the calf; men of purified intellect are the drinkers and the supreme nectar Gita is the milk.

The analogy given is symbolic. The entire Veda is pictured as cow. - Upanishado gavo. the milking man is gopalanandana - Krishna, the cowherd boy; Partha vatsah- Arjuna becomes the calf. And he is benefited as well as the men of purified intellect (by the teaching). The drinkers of this glorious Gita milk are the beneficiary - the beginners of life.

Mahabharata Namaskar

Mahabharata Namaskar
पाराशर्य सरोजममलं गीतार्थगन्धोत्क्टं
नानाख्यानककेसरं हरिकथासम्बोधनाबोधितम् ।
लोके सज्जनषट् पदैरहरहः पेपीयमानं मुदा
भूयाद्भारतपङ्कजं कलिमलप्रध्वंसिनः श्रेयसे ॥७॥

Parasarya vachah sarojam amalam gitartha gandhotkatam
Nanakhyanaka kesaram hari katha sambhodhana bothitham /
Loke sajjana satpadair aharahah pepiyamanam muda
Bhuyad bharata pankajam kalimala pradhvamsinah sreyase // 7 ii

Parasarya vacha sarojam - born in the lake of the words of the son of Parasara (Vyasa) amalam - spotless, gita artha gandha utkatam - sweet with the fragrance of the meaning of Gita, nana akhyanakakesaram - with many stories as its stamens, harikatha sambodhana bodhitam - fully opened by the discources on Hari, loke - in the world, satjana satpadaih - by the bees of good men, ahah, ahah - day by day, pepiyamanam - drunk, muda - joyously, bhuyat - may be, bharatapankajam - the lotus of the Mahabharata, kalimala pradhvamsinah - of the destroyer of the dirt of Kali ( to us ) sreyase - for the supreme Good.

May the taintless lotus of the Mahabharata growing on the waters of the words of Parasara (Vyasa), sweet with the fragrance of the meaning of Gita, with many a narrative as its stamens, fully opened (blossomed) by the discourses on Hari, the destroyer of the sins of Kali; and drank joyously day after day by the Bhramara (a kind of beetle like insect which lives solely on honey), of good and pure men in the world, become the bestower of good to us.

In this Dhyana Sloka, Mahabharatam is compared to a big Lotus - bharata pankajam (It is a metaphor - or figure of speech - here rupaka almkara.) parasarya vacha sarojam - growing in the words of the son of Parasara (Vyasa) Amalam - pure. Lotus is always pure. Mahabharata is also pure devoid of grammar mistake and deficiency in the meaning - Sabdha and Artha dhoshas. Gitartha gandha - the wisdom of Bhagavad Gita is like the sweet fragrance; uthgadam, - prominent .nanakhyanaka - many stories kesaram -filaments (stamens) hanging as in a flower; the stories of Lord Krishna expanded. Different people get different ananda from the Mahabharata stories. It is a Dharma Sastram; It gives the highest Vedantic teaching. If you go deep into it you can drink the Jnanam honey; aharahah - day by day; muda - joyously; pepiyamanam -drunk; kalimala pradhvamsinah - destroyer of the dirt of Kali; sreyase - for the supreme good.

Vyasacharya Namaskara

12 September 04
Vyasacharya Namaskara
नमोऽस्तु ते व्यास विशालबुद्घे पुल्लारविन्दायतपत्रनेत्र ।
येन त्वया भारततैलपूर्णः प्रज्वालितो ज्ञानमयः प्रदीपः ॥२॥

Nam `stu Te vyasa visala buddhe phullara vindayata patra netra /
Yena tvaya bharata tailapurnah prajvalito jnanamayah pradipah // 2 ii

Namah - salutations, astu te -be unto thee, vyasa - O! Vyasa, visala buddhe - of profound intellect, phullaravinda ayata patra netra - with eyes like the petals of a full-grown lotus, yena - which, tvaya - by thee, bharata taila purnaha - full of the oil of the Mahabarata prajvalitaha - lighted, jnanamayaha - consisting of wisdom, pradipaha - lamp.

Salutation to thee O! Vyasa of profound intellect and with eyes large like the petals of a full blown lotus, by whom the lamp of knowledge, filled with the oil of the Mahabharata, has been lighted.

Though Vyasa is not the author of Bhagavad Gita, he collected and compiled the teaching and incorporated the same in the Mahabharata. We are very grateful to Vyasa, because (otherwise) we would not have known what has transpired between Sri Krishna and Arjuna.
Let this salutation go to you - te- O Vyasa. The original name of Vyasa is Krishna Dwapayana. He got the name Vyasa, because he classified the Vedas into Rig, Yajur, Sama, and Atharvan Vedas. Vi + as = Vyas to classify - Vedavyasa. Visalabuddhe - one who has vast knowledge - another meaning is Mind-antakarana. One who has got generous mind to spread the knowledge to the whole universe; who is compassionate. Pulla - fully blossomed aravinda- Lotus ayatha- long patra -petal netra- eye .His eyes are beautiful like long fully blossomed lotus. By this description Madusudanacharya is really describing the inner beauty of loving character and compassion. Vyasacharya has made many contributions to the society and humanity- the most glorious one is the Mahabharata where in he has incorporated the Gita. Yena tvaya - by you; jnanamaya - consisting of wisdom pradipah - a huge lamp; lamp of knowledge, not a flickering light. Knowledge is compared to a lamp because it destroys darkness and illumines the object in front. To reach the destination of happiness and freedom, the journey requires a powerful lamp of wisdom to illumine the pathway. Vyasacharya is switching on the Baghavad Gita lamp. For lighting the lamp you require the Mahabharata oil -mahabaratha thailam. Through the Mahabharata story he is teaching us the lessons of life.

Krishna 1

Krishna Namaskara
प्रपन्नपारिजाताय तोत्रवेत्रैकपाणये ।
ज्ञानमुद्राय कृष्णाय गितामृतदुहे नमः ॥३॥

Prapanna parijataya totravetraika panaye /
Jnana mudraya krsnaya gitamrta duhe namah // 3 ii

Prapanna parijataya - the Parijata or the Kalpataru the bestower of all desires, for those who take refuge in Him, totra vetra eka panaye - who holds a cane in one hand, jnana mudraya - the holder of Knowledge symbol, krishnaya - to Krishna, Gita amritha duhe - the milker of the Gita-nectar, namah - salutations.

Salutation to Krishna, the Parijatha or the Kalpataru, the bestower of all desires of those who take refuge in him, the holder of the cane in one hand, the holder of Jnanamudra (the symbol of Knowledge) in the other hand, the milker of the Gita-nectar

Krshnaya namaha -
salutations to Sri Krishna. There are two meaning for the word Krishna. - Dark in complexion. The second meaning is one who attracts everyone towards himself - karshathi sarvaan iti Krishna ;derived from the root kris -to attract, to drag, to pull; in short one who has an attractive personality is Krishna. There is only one thing which attracts people - anandah. Krishna is Ananda Swarupa. He is capable of distributing Ananda to everyone. Black colour also absorbs all the seven colours. Therefore it does not throw out any colour. Krishna is sachidananda swaroopa.What are his glories? Prapanna parijathaya - Parijatham and Kalpatharu are celestial trees in the heaven. They are born when the ocean was churned. They will grant your wishes -`Wish yielding trees'.Sri Krishna will fulfill the desires of the entire humanity if you approach Him - our efforts must be there. Artha, Kama, Dharma and Moksha are our goals. He who is a Universal teacher will tell us all the ways of reaching the four goals. Totra vetra eka panaye - In the battle field Lord Krishna seated in the driver's seat of the chariot was teaching Arjuna holding the handle of the whip; in the other hand he was holding the Mudra or the symbol of Knowledge - Atmajnana mudra otherwise called Chinmudra. The index finger, called darjani touches or joins the tip of the thump called,angushtah. When you join these two fingers, they form a full circle without a beginning or the end - the other three fingers gets separated from the index finger.
The index finger represents the Jeevatma ahamkara - ego which is a threat to the society. This ego is associated with these three fingers representing the Satva, Rajas and Tamo gunas, and three avasthas and three sarirams.The Jeevathma is suffering from Samsara. Separating oneself from the 3 fold body is the Spiritual Life. Join with the Angusta, thumb which represents the Paramatma your own higher nature - sthula sookshma karanad vyathiristhaha, avasthatria sakshi, panchakosa vilakshana satchidananda swarupa is the Angusta,Thumb. All the four fingers can function only with the support of the thumb. It is the adharam.Like that God is also the adharam. The Jeevatma has to be joined with Paramathma - jeevatma paramatma ikyam When the index finger touches the thumb, it becomes a single circle. The circle has no beginning or end. It is purnah. It is sweet; I am happy and make other also happy. Gita amrutha duhe - by extracting and teaching to others. He is communicating and imparting Knowledge to Arjuna. He is milking the nectar of Gita from the Vedic cow. To that Krishna, I give my namaskarams.

Kr 2

19 September 04
Krishna Namaskara
वसुदेवसुतं देवं कंसचाणूरमर्दनम् ।
देवकीपरमानन्दं कृष्णं वन्दे जगद् गुरुम् ॥५॥

Vasudeva sutam devam kamsa chanura mardhanam /
Devaki paramanandam krishnam vande jagad guram // 5 ii

Vasudeva sutam - the son of Vasudeva, devam - god, kamsachanura mardanam - the destroyer, of Kamsa and Chanura, devaki parama anandam - the supreme bliss of Devaki ( mother of Krishna), krishnam - to Krishna, vande - I salute, Jagatgurum - the world teacher.

I salute Lord Krishna, the world teacher, the son of Vasudeva, the destroyer of Kamsa and Chanura, the supreme bliss of Devaki.

I offer my namaskaras to Krishna, who is the son of Vasudeva - vasudeva sutham; who is also the son of Devaki - devaki nandana, Destroyer of Kamsa and Chanura - Kamsa Chanura mardanam. Jagat gurum - who is the teacher of the whole Universe (thro Arjuna -reported by Vyasacharya). Here Madusudhana Saraswathi indicates the three glories of Sri Krishna. Firstly he gave supreme joy to Devaki; He gave ananda to his parents. The first and foremost duty of an individual is his duty towards his parents, family and society. Second glory is that he destroyed adharmic people like Kamsa and Chanura. and protected dharmic people. 3rd glory is that Krishna personally taught Arjuna and Udhava. By this Krishna has taught both the contemporary society and the posterity also. To such Sri Krishna I offer my salutation.

Kr 3

Krishna Namaskara
भीष्मद्रोणतटा जयद्रथजला गान्धारनीलोत्पला ।
शल्यग्राहवती कृपेणा वहनी कर्णेन वेलाकुला ।
अश्वत्थामविकर्णघोरमकरा दुर्योधनावर्तिनी ।
सोत्तीर्णा खलु पाण्डवै रणनदि कैवर्तकः केशवः ॥४॥

Bhishma drone tata jayadratha jala gandhara nilotpala
Salya grahavati kripena vahani karnena velakula /
Asvatthama vikarna ghora makara duryodhanavartini
Sottirna khalu pandavai rana nadi kaivartakah kesavah // 6 ii

Bhishma drona tada - with Bhishma and Drona as the banks, jayadrathajala - with Jayadratha as the water, gandhara nilotpala - with the King of Gandhara as the blue water-lily, salya grahavati - with Salya as the shark, kripena vahani - with Kripa as the current, karnena velakula - with Karna as the high waves, asvatthamavikarna ghora makara - with Aswathama and Vikarna as the terrible Makaras (a kind of marine animal), duryodhanavartini - with Duryodhana as the whirpool,sa - that, rana nadi - battle river, khalu - indeed, pandavaihi -by the Pandavas, utthirna - crossed over,(with) Kesava - Kesava, kaivartakaha - (as ) the ferryman.


In this verse one of the unique glories of Lord is brought out. - He is aapad bandhava - one who helps in crisis. Usually when there is crisis no body will help; but God invariably comes to your rescue. (But we may not think about Him). His help in the Mahabharata war is the proof. The Pandavas were facing a crisis as their army is comparatively small; and Duryodhana had the advantage of being the ruler. In spite of this tPandavas won the war because of the invisible grace of Lord Krishna. Madhusudana Sarasvathi visualizes the Mahabharata war as a huge flooded river having Bhishma and Drona as the banks (tada) Jayadratha as water whose depth cannot be measured, - gandhara nila utpala gandhara as dark rock or granite(another version - nila utpala - blue water lily). King of Gandhara is Sakuni. If a person gets trapped in the dark rocks he will be killed; so also with Sakuni, salya grahavati - Powerful king Salya is like a shark or crocodile; kripena vahani. - Kripa as powerful current. Karnena velaakula - Karna as high waves; Asvatthama, and Vikarna as the huge whale or fish; Duryodhana is the Whirlpool. Each of the above make the river dangerous and difficult to cross. Since Pandavas had an unique boatman, Krishna, they could cross the river with his Grace. Hence Bhagavan is the only person who can help us - apathbandava, artha trana, saranagadha vathsala. To such a god, Krishna I give our salutation.

Kr 4

Krishna Namaskara
मूकं करोति वाचालं पङ्गुं लङ्घयते गिरिम् ।
यत्कृपा तमहं वन्दे परमानन्दमाधवम् ॥८॥

Mukam karoti vachalam pangum langhayate girim /
Yetkripa tamaham vande paramananda madhavam // 8 II

Yatkripa - whose compassion, mukam - the mute, vachalam -(become) eloquent, karoti -makes, pangum - the cripple, (climb) girim - mountain, langayate - causes to cross, tam - that paramanandamadhavam - the All-bliss Madhava ( sweetest of the sweet) aham vande - I salute.

I salute that Madhava, the source of supreme Bliss, whose grace makes the dump eloquent and the cripple climb and cross the mountains.

With the grace of the Lord one can achieve any thing; mukam - a dumb person becomes eloquent; pangum, the cripple can climb and cross the mountain. We think that it is difficult to get Moksha living with the six evils - kama, krodha, lobha, mohah, matha and mathcharyam. But with his grace we can climb the mountain of Moksha. When you are diffident and go on telling “I can not ,I can not ;then think of God - With his grace you will be able to say “I can, I can” He will change your attitude. I salute such Bhagavan.

Kr 5

Krishna Namaskara
यं ब्रह्मा वरुणेन्द्ररुद्रमरुतः स्तुन्वन्ति दिव्यैः स्तवैर्वेदैः
साङ्गपदक्रमोपनिषदैर्गायन्ति यं सामगाः ।
ध्यानावस्थिततद् गतेन मनसा पश्यन्ति यं योगिनो
यस्यान्तं न विदुः सुरासुरगणा देवाय तस्मै नमः ॥९॥

Yam brahma varunendra rudra maruthah stunvanti divyaih stavaiah
Vedaiah sanga pada kramopanisadair gayanti yam samagah /
Dhyanavasthita tadgatena manasa pasyanti yam yogino yasyantam na viduh surasuragana devaya tasmai namah // 9 II

Salutation to that God whom Brahma, Varuna, Indra, Rudra and the Maruts praise with devine hymns, whom the Sama-chanters sing by Veda and their Angas, in the Pada and Krama methods, and by the Upanishads, whom the yogis see with their minds absorbed in Him through meditation, and whose end of hosts of Devas and Asuras know not.

All the Devas - Brahma, Varuna Indra,Marutha - worship the Lord Vishnu through divyaih stavaih - various sthothras, hymns; vedaih- by Vedas; Sa ang padakrama upanisadaih - Even human beings glorify the Lord thro the four Vedas - pada karma represents various types of Vedic chanting. - Thro Upanishad. Samavedis glorify Him thro' sama gana.There are some seekers who understand that the real God is not an outside object; the real God is dwelling within us. The real Jnani discovers this by the practice of various methods -sravanam, mananam and nithidyasanam - sadanas. Real god is not a person because as an individual, he will be limited in dimension He is Anadi, Ananda, all pervading, formless. To such God I offer my salutation.

Introduction

12 September 04
Introduction to Srimad Bhagavad Gita

With the blessings of the Lord and the entire Guru Parambara we will enter into the study of Bhagavad-Gita, which is the essence of ALL the Vedas. Bhagavad-Gita is a part of the Mahabharata consisting of 18 chapters and 700 verses. The contents of the Gita can be presented in very many ways; but we will see it in the following manner. The Gita talks about three basic principles to be remembered throughout the life; three lifestyle to be followed and three lessons to be learned.

The three basic principles are 1.One has to be responsible for one's life. He cannot wash off or hand over that responsibility to others including God. No body else can or will take responsibility for others life. - including the wife, children and the parent. So one has to equip himself for that. ALONE TO ALONE, ALL ALONE IS LIFE. Throughout the Gita Lord Krishna emphasizes this point - uddhareth athmanathmanam na athmanam avasadayed - one should uplift ones lower self by the higher self. Arjuna! I am willing to support you; but you have to do your duty yourself. 2. Self confidence thro' faith in God - The second principle is an extension of the first principle. When one has to take charge of one's life, the responsibility may appear heavy and frightening. Has he got the strength to face the various situations in life with limited physical, emotional and intellectual strength? Hence diffidence is inevitable. Hence Lord Krishna says that you should have faith in God to boost your self confidence. The real God, which is the inner strength, is within oneself. Understand God as ones' own inner internal resource. Hence daily in the morning practice auto-suggestion that I am confident of facing life with the help and grace of God. 3. Life of Values (virtues, ethics, moral etc) Virtue is psychological hygiene; without hygiene the body can never be healthy and strong. Psychological hygiene is important for emotional health and strength. Krishna himself highlights these virtues on several occasions. By violating values, one may get more money and luxury; but peace and happiness can not be gained without it. Value is dharma.

The three life styles that are to be followed in stages or grades. 1. A life of activity and contribution to the family, society and the world. Every experience in life has got a hidden lesson, both pleasurable and painful. But if I am not equipped, I will not be able to learn lessons from such experiences of life. This active life style of contribution and learning is the first life style. Krishna calls it Karma Yoga - an active life style of contributions, learning, growing, maturing, ripening, and getting refined. 2. The 2nd life style is the Life style of re-orientation. Sri Krishna calls it Upasana Yoga. In this life of re-orientation, I change my extrovert and outgoing mind towards myself. I have to turn my mind inwards suitable for self enquiry; otherwise I am not interested to find out who am I? What is our internal composition? What is in my mind? What are emotions? What is knowledge? The enquiry into all these is the Upasana Yoga. The 3rd life style is the life style in which one is no more bothered about the things outside. We have got a vast stretch of inner personality to study five Kosas; and turn our attention towards body, mind and intellect. Hence it is the inward journey of self enquiry, athma vichara, which we call Jnana Yoga. Hence the three fold life style to be followed is Karma Yoga Upasana Yoga Jnana Yoga.

The three lessons to be learned: 1.Jeeva Swarupam - Our real nature. Our Vedantic scriptures talk about an invisible, eternal inner reality within oneself called Athma. Knowing this inner truth is lesson number one. 2. Iswara swarupam - The real nature of God who is behind the external phenomena called the world. We will be learning from Gita, that the World is nothing but a drama, which is taking place in the reality called Isvara tatwam. 3. The truth of the individual and the truth behind the whole creation - Jeeva thatwam and Iswara thatvam. The Jeevathma and Paramathma are one and the same - like ocean water and the wave water are one and the same. If we successfully go through and assimilate these three lessons, our life's mission will be accomplished. After fulfillment and poornatwam we will attain Moksha. This is Gita Sara.

Any scriptural teaching - Gita, Upanishad, Veda - cannot be grasped, if we study them by ourselves. (Self study). Hence they should be studied under the guidance of a proper guide, Guru. The teaching should come as a Guru Parambara. There is a method for teaching. It comes as a dialogue between a Guru and Sishya. We call it samvada - healthy constructive dialogue. It is not argumentative done with the aim of defeating the other person with ego. In dialogue light is generated - Guru Sishya samvada. In the Gita also the same method of teaching is followed. The student who receives the teaching is expected to think over it for better understanding. In Sastric teaching assimilation is not an automatic process. In the course of study doubts are bound to arise. The Guru will clear them by the method of dialogue. The same method is followed in the teaching of Gita. Hence Bhagavad-Gita is also in the form of a dialogue between a Sishya - Arjuna and a Guru - Sri Krishna.

Before the dialogue takes place, the student has to go through certain stages indicating that he is ready to go through the teaching. .Student should have certain qualification for listening. The guru also requires certain qualification for communicating the teaching - srothriya brahma nishta is the qualification for the teacher. He must have the comprehensive, doubtless knowledge about the subjects, he is going to teach. He should also have the skill of communication - srothrium. He should also follow what he teaches. Student should also have basic qualification and desire to acquire the knowledge. He should also have the conviction about the utility of that knowledge,
Generally the Guru and Sishya are brought together through a story or anecdote. The story is the indirect method of prescribing the qualifications of a teacher and the taught. The story may be a fact or fiction or a mixture. In Bhagavad-Gita also the first chapter happens to be such a story-akyayika - Mahabharata battle. Through the battle field event, Vyasacharya introduces the teacher - Sri Krishna, and the student - Arjuna. The actual teaching starts from the 11th verse of the 2nd Chapter.
3 October 04


Human beings look upon peace and happiness as the destination to be attained in the future. Vedas declare that peace and happiness are not products which are to be generated in future. They are to be discovered as a natural state of mind available ALL the TIME.
How to discover that - by living a proper way of Life. This proper way consists of two things. - Right action. Dharma and right Knowledge - Vidya, AthmaJnanam. The entire Vedas have got only these two topics. The first portion is called Veda purva which deals with right action namely dharma the other portion is called Veda antha which deals with right knowledge. When ones' life is governed by dharma and jnanam, then peace and happiness becomes ones natural state. Emotional slavery is one of the big obstacles in following this way of life. Emotional slavery is an obstruction to proper thinking as in a person who has consumed liquor. His intellect is not sober enough to understand what dharma is; and then a ruler has to resort to that course where violence is the dharmic duty. Vedas say Learn to handle your emotional personality, keep your discriminative power bright and active, and follow a proper way of life. Then you will be able to discover peace and happiness as a natural state of mind. This is the basic teaching Krishna gives to Arjuna. In the battle field, Arjuna is overwhelmed by emotion and looses his discriminative power and is utterly confused, loosing sight of proper action and knowledge. Lord Krishna helps him out and gives him the knowledge of dharma and jnanam. (Hence every chapter ends with the words iti Srimad Bhagavadgitasu Upanishatsu Brahmavidyayam Yogasastre Sri Krishna Arjuna samvate yogonama..adhyayah) Gita has two main aspects - brahma vidya (right knowledge) and yoga sasthram (right action or dharma).

In the Mahabharata, The Kauravas were adharmic; Pandavas were dharmic people, who were asking for their legitimate right in a non violent manner. But Duryodhana refused to oblige. Non-violence is given a great value in our culture. According to our scripture non-violence has not got an absolute value. One has to try the non-violent methods like Sama, dhana, and bedha first. If they fail then it is perfectly right to take to danda- violent method also to preserve and protect dharma. When war is required to protect preaching of non-violence. At that time it (war) is dharma. In the first Chapter we are going to see how Arjuna had dharma in his mind in the beginning of the war; but slowly he becomes a slave to (emotional) attachment of his kith and kin. Because of this misplaced attachment he preaches Ahimsa in the wrong place, where himsa is his duty. Lord Krishna corrects his vision. This is the background of First Chapter.
Conversion: 8 June 2012
Time: 8h, 3h
wiki: Bhagavad Gita
source: hinduonline.co
source: arshaavinash.in












Article

Essays on the Gita

Conversion: 28 Apr 2012, 42h
Google Books: Essays on the Gita
source: sriaurobindoashram.org
source: intyoga.online.fr
Translation alone: Sri Aurobindo’s Gita, docx
youtube: 18 Lessons – curejoy
Our Demand and Need from the Gita
Quote from:
Page: 3

THE WORLD abounds with scriptures sacred and profane, with revelations and half-revelations, with religions and philosophies, sects and schools and systems. To these the many minds of a half-ripe knowledge or no knowledge at all attach themselves with exclusiveness and passion and will have it that this or the other book is alone the eternal Word of God and all others are either impostures or at best imperfectly inspired, that this or that philosophy is the last word of the reasoning intellect and other systems are either errors or saved only by such partial truth in them as links them to the one true philosophical cult. Even the discoveries of physical Science have been elevated into a creed and in its name religion and spirituality banned as ignorance and superstition, philosophy as frippery and moonshine. And to these bigoted exclusions and vain wranglings even the wise have often lent themselves, misled by some spirit of darkness that has mingled with their light and overshadowed it with some cloud of intellectual egoism or spiritual pride. Mankind seems now indeed inclined to grow a little modester and wiser; we no longer slay our fellows in the name of God's truth or because they have minds differently trained or differently constituted from ours; we are less ready to curse and revile our neighbour because he is wicked or presumptuous enough to differ from us in opinion; we are ready even to admit that Truth is everywhere and cannot be our sole monopoly; we are beginning to look at other religions and philosophies for the truth and help they contain and no longer merely in order to damn them as false or criticise what we conceive to be their errors. But we are still apt to declare that our truth gives us the supreme knowledge which other religions or philosophies …

Page: 4

have missed or only imperfectly grasped so that they deal either with subsidiary and inferior aspects of the truth of things or can merely prepare less evolved minds for the heights to which we have arrived. And we are still prone to force upon ourselves or others the whole sacred mass of the book or gospel we admire, insisting that all shall be accepted as eternally valid truth and no iota or underline or diaeresis denied its part of the plenary inspiration.

It may therefore be useful in approaching an ancient Scripture, such as the Veda, Upanishads or Gita, to indicate precisely the spirit in which we approach it and what exactly we think we may derive from it that is of value to humanity and its future. First of all, there is undoubtedly a Truth one and eternal which we are seeking, from which all other truth derives, by the light of which all other truth finds its right place, explanation and relation to the scheme of knowledge. But precisely for that reason it cannot be shut up in a single trenchant formula, it is not likely to be found in its entirety or in all its bearings in any single philosophy or scripture or uttered altogether and for ever by any one teacher, thinker, prophet or Avatar. Nor has it been wholly found by us if our view of it necessitates the intolerant exclusion of the truth underlying other systems; for when we reject passionately, we mean simply that we cannot appreciate and explain. Secondly, this Truth, though it is one and eternal, expresses itself in Time and through the mind of man; therefore every Scripture must necessarily contain two elements, one temporary, perishable, belonging to the ideas of the period and country in which it was produced, the other eternal and imperishable and applicable in all ages and countries. Moreover, in the statement of the Truth the actual form given to it, the system and arrangement, the metaphysical and intellectual mould, the precise expression used must be largely subject to the mutations of Time and cease to have the same force; for the human intellect modifies itself always; continually dividing and putting together it is obliged to shift its divisions continually and to rearrange its syntheses; it is always leaving old expression and symbol for new or, if it uses the old, it so changes its connotation or at least …

Page: 5

its exact content and association that we can never be quite sure of understanding an ancient book of this kind precisely in the sense and spirit it bore to its contemporaries. What is of entirely permanent value is that which besides being universal has been experienced, lived and seen with a higher than the intellectual vision.

I hold it therefore of small importance to extract from the Gita its exact metaphysical connotation as it was understood by the men of the time, - even if that were accurately possible. That it is not possible, is shown by the divergence of the original commentaries which have been and are still being written upon it; for they all agree in each disagreeing with all the others, each finds in the Gita its own system of metaphysics and trend of religious thought. Nor will even the most painstaking and disinterested scholarship and the most luminous theories of the historical development of Indian philosophy save us from inevitable error. But what we can do with profit is to seek in the Gita for the actual living truths it contains, apart from their metaphysical form, to extract from it what can help us or the world at large and to put it in the most natural and vital form and expression we can find that will be suitable to the mentality and helpful to the spiritual needs of our present-day humanity. No doubt in this attempt we may mix a good deal of error born of our own individuality and of the ideas in which we live, as did greater men before us, but if we steep ourselves in the spirit of this great Scripture and, above all, if we have tried to live in that spirit, we may be sure of finding in it as much real truth as we are capable of receiving as well as the spiritual influence and actual help that, personally, we were intended to derive from it. And that is after all what Scriptures were written to give; the rest is academical disputation or theological dogma. Only those Scriptures, religions, philosophies which can be thus constantly renewed, relived, their stuff of permanent truth constantly reshaped and developed in the inner thought and spiritual experience of a developing humanity, continue to be of living importance to mankind. The rest remain as monuments of the past, but have no actual force or vital impulse for the future.

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In the Gita there is very little that is merely local or temporal and its spirit is so large, profound and universal that even this little can easily be universalised without the sense of the teaching suffering any diminution or violation; rather by giving an ampler scope to it than belonged to the country and epoch, the teaching gains in depth, truth and power. Often indeed the Gita itself suggests the wider scope that can in this way be given to an idea in itself local or limited. Thus it dwells on the ancient Indian system and idea of sacrifice as an interchange between gods and men, — a system and idea which have long been practically obsolete in India itself and are no longer real to the general human mind; but we find here a sense so entirely subtle, figurative and symbolic given to the word “sacrifice” and the conception of the gods is so little local or mythological, so entirely cosmic and philosophical that we can easily accept both as expressive of a practical fact of psychology and general law of Nature and so apply them to the modern conceptions of interchange between life and life and of ethical sacrifice and self-giving as to widen and deepen these and cast over them a more spiritual aspect and the light of a profounder and more far-reaching Truth. Equally the idea of action according to the Shastra, the fourfold order of society, the allusion to the relative position of the four orders or the comparative spiritual disabilities of Shudras and women seem at first sight local and temporal, and, if they are too much pressed in their literal sense, narrow so much at least of the teaching, deprive it of its universality and spiritual depth and limit its validity for mankind at large. But if we look behind to the spirit and sense and not at the local name and temporal institution, we see that here too the sense is deep and true and the spirit philosophical, spiritual and universal. By Shastra we perceive that the Gita means the law imposed on itself by humanity as a substitute for the purely egoistic action of the natural unregenerate man and a control on his tendency to seek in the satisfaction of his desire the standard and aim of his life. We see too that the fourfold order of society is merely the concrete form of a spiritual truth which is itself independent of the form; it rests on the conception of right works as a rightly ordered …

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expression of the nature of the individual being through whom the work is done, that nature assigning him his line and scope in life according to his inborn quality and his self-expressive function. Since this is the spirit in which the Gita advances its most local and particular instances, we are justified in pursuing always the same principle and looking always for the deeper general truth which is sure to underlie whatever seems at first sight merely local and of the time. For we shall find always that the deeper truth and principle is implied in the grain of the thought even when it is not expressly stated in its language.

Nor shall we deal in any other spirit with the element of philosophical dogma or religious creed which either enters into the Gita or hangs about it owing to its use of the philosophical terms and religious symbols current at the time. When the Gita speaks of Sankhya and Yoga, we shall not discuss beyond the limits of what is just essential for our statement, the relations of the Sankhya of the Gita with its one Purusha and strong Vedantic colouring to the non-theistic or “atheistic” Sankhya that has come down to us bringing with it its scheme of many Purushas and one Prakriti, nor of the Yoga of the Gita, many-sided, subtle, rich and flexible to the theistic doctrine and the fixed, scientific, rigorously defined and graded system of the Yoga of Patanjali. In the Gita the Sankhya and Yoga are evidently only two convergent parts of the same Vedantic truth or rather two concurrent ways of approaching its realisation, the one philosophical, intellectual, analytic, the other intuitional, devotional, practical, ethical, synthetic, reaching knowledge through experience. The Gita recognises no real difference in their teachings. Still less need we discuss the theories which regard the Gita as the fruit of some particular religious system or tradition. Its teaching is universal whatever may have been its origins.

The philosophical system of the Gita, its arrangement of truth, is not that part of its teaching which is the most vital, profound, eternally durable; but most of the material of which the system is composed, the principal ideas suggestive and penetrating which are woven into its complex harmony, are eternally valuable and valid; for they are not merely the luminous ideas or …

1: All the Puranic tradition, it must be remembered, draws the richness of its contents from the Tantra.
2: The cosmic Play.
Book

Mahabharata

Conversion: 27 Apr 2012
Time: 2h, 1h
Wiki: Mahabharata
Source: mahabharataonline.com

The Mahabharata, is the greatest, longest and one of the two major
Sanskrit epics of ancient India, the other being the Ramayana. With more
than 74,000 verses, plus long prose passages, or some 1.8 million words
in total, it is one of the longest epic poems in the world.

It contains eighteen Parvas or sections viz., Adi Parva, Sabha Parva,
Vana Parva, Virata Parva, Udyoga Parva, Bhishma Parva, Drona Parva, Karna
Parva, Shalya Parva, Sauptika Parva, Stree Parva, Shanti Parva,
Anushasana Parva, Asvamedha Parva, Ashramavasika Parva, Mausala Parva,
Mahaprasthanika Parva and Swargarohanika Parva. Each Parva contains many
sub-Parvas or subsections.

This wonderful book was composed by Sri Vyasa (Krishna Dvaipayana) who
was the grandfather of the heroes of the epic. He taught this epic to his
son Suka and his disciples Vaisampayana and others. King Janamejaya, son
of Parikshit, the grandson of the heroes of the epic, performed a great
sacrifice. The epic was recited by Vaisampayana to Janamejaya at the
command of Vyasa. Later on, Suta recited the Mahabharata as was done by
Vaisampayana to Janamejaya, to Saunaka and others, during a sacrifice
performed by Saunaka in Naimisaranya, which is near Sitapur in Uttar
Pradesh.

It is very interesting to remember the opening and closing lines of this
great epic. It begins with: “Vyasa sang of the ineffable greatness and
splendour of Lord Vasudeva, who is the source and support for everything,
who is eternal, unchanging, self-luminous, who is the Indweller in all
beings, and the truthfulness and righteousness of the Pandavas.” It ends
with: “With raised hands, I shout at the top of my voice; but alas, no
one hears my words which can give them Supreme Peace, Joy and Eternal
Bliss. One can attain wealth and all objects of desire through Dharma
(righteousness). Why do not people practise Dharma? One should not
abandon Dharma at any cost, even at the risk of his life. One should not
relinquish Dharma out of passion or fear or covetousness or for the sake
of preserving one’s life. This is the Bharata Gayatri. Meditate on this
daily, O man! when you retire to sleep and when you rise from your bed
every morning. You will attain everything. You will attain fame,
prosperity, long life, eternal bliss, everlasting peace and immortality.”

C Rajagopalachari’s Version

This is the text which is made available on this site.
PREFACE TO FIRST EDITION

IT is not an exaggeration to say that the persons and incidents portrayed
in the great literature of a people influence national character no less
potently than the actual heroes and events enshrined in its history. It
may be claimed that the former play an even more important part in the
formation of ideals, which give to character its impulse of growth.

Don Quixote, Gulliver, Pickwick, Sam Weller, Sir Roger de Coverley,
Falstaff, Shylock, King Arthur, Sir Lancelot, Alice and her wanderings in
Wonderland, all these and many such other creations of genius are not
less real in the minds of the British people than the men and women who
lived and died and lie buried in British soil.

Since literature is so vitally related to fife and character, it follows
that so long as the human family remains divided into nations, the
personae and events of one national literature have not an equal appeal
to all, because they do not awaken the same associations. A word or
phrase about Falstaff or Uncle Toby carries to English men a world of
significance, which it does not to others.

Similarly, a word or phrase about Hanuman, Bhima, Arjuna, Bharata or Sita
conveys to us in India, learned and illiterate alike, a significance all
its own, of which an English rendering cannot convey even a fraction to
outsiders, however interested in Indian mythology and folklore.

Book

The Prophet

Conversion: 13 Nov 2011
Time: 2h
Wiki: The Prophet (book)
Source: leb.net

The Prophet is a book of 26 poetic essays written in English by the Lebanese artist, philosopher and writer Kahlil Gibran. It was originally published in 1923 by Alfred A. Knopf. It is Gibran’s best known work. The Prophet has been translated into over forty different languages

Synopsis

The prophet, Al-Mustafa who has lived in the foreign city of Orphalese for 12 years is about to board a ship which will carry him home. He is stopped by a group of people, with whom he discusses many of life and the human condition. The book is divided into chapters dealing with love, marriage, children, giving, eating and drinking, work, joy and sorrow, houses, clothes, buying and selling, crime and punishment, laws, freedom, reason and passion, pain, self-knowledge, teaching, friendship, talking, time, good and evil, prayer, pleasure, beauty, religion, and death.

About Kahlil Gibran

gibran
Khalil
Gibran, Photograph by Fred Holland Day, c. 1898

Kahlil Gibran was a Lebanese American artist, poet, and writer, born in the town of Bsharri in modern-day Lebanon.

He is chiefly known in the English speaking world for his 1923 book The Prophet, an early example of inspirational fiction including a series of philosophical essays written in poetic English prose. Gibran is the third best-selling poet of all time, behind Shakespeare and Lao-Tzu.

Gibran was by no means a politician. He used to say : “I am not a politician, nor do I wish to become one” and “Spare me the political events and power strugges, as the whole earth is my homeland and all men are my fellow countrymen” 1

Garden of The Prophet

Gibran followed The Prophet with The Garden of The Prophet, which was published posthumously in 1933.
The Garden of the Prophet narrates Almustafa’s discussions with nine disciples following Almustafa’s return after an intervening absence. 2

Poem

Prometheus Unbound

Conversion: 5 Nov 2011
Time: 4h
Wiki: Prometheus Unbound (Shelley)
Source: bartleby.com

Prometheus is a Titan, who in Greek mythology is credited with the creation of man from clay and the theft of fire for human use, an act that enabled progress and civilization. He is known for his intelligence, and as a champion of mankind.

Prometheus was punished for this theft by Zeus, king of the Olympian gods, who sentenced the Titan to eternal torment for his transgression.

In some stories, Prometheus is freed at last by the hero Heracles (Hercules).

The Romantics drew comparisons between Prometheus and the spirit of the French Revolution, Christ, the Satan of John Milton’s Paradise Lost, and the divinely inspired poet or artist.

Prometheus Unbound best combines the various elements of Shelley’s genius in their most complete expression, and unites harmoniously his lyrically creative power of imagination and his ‘passion for reforming the world.’ It is the fruit of an outburst of poetic energy under the double stimulus of his enthusiastic Greek studies, begun under Peacock’s influence, and of his delight in the beauty of Italy, whither he had removed for health and rest. It marks his full mastery of his powers. It is, not less than Queen Mab and The Revolt of Islam, a poem of the moral perfection of man; and, not less than Alastor and Epipsychidion, a poem of spiritual ideality. He was himself in love with it: ‘a poem of a higher character than anything I have yet attempted and perhaps less an imitation of anything that has gone before it,’ he writes to Ollier; and again, ‘a poem in my best style, whatever that may amount to,… the most perfect of my productions,’ and ‘the best thing I ever wrote;’ and finally he says, ‘Prometheus Unbound, I must tell you, is my favorite poem; I charge you, therefore, especially to pet him and feed him with fine ink and good paper…. I think, if I can judge by its merits, the Prometheus cannot sell beyond twenty copies.’ Nor did he lose his affection for it. Trelawny records him as saying, ‘If that is not durable poetry, tried by the severest test, I do not know what is. It is a lofty subject, not inadequately treated, and should not perish with me.’… ‘My friends say my Prometheus is too wild, ideal, and perplexed with imagery. It may be so. It has no resemblance to the Greek drama. It is original; and cost me severe mental labor. Authors, like mothers, prefer the children who have given them most trouble.’

The drama was begun in the summer-house of his garden at Este about September, 1818, and the first Act had been finished as early as October 8; it was apparently laid aside, and again taken up at Rome in the spring of 1819, where, under the circumstances described in the preface, the second and third Acts were added, and the work, in its first form, was thus completed by April 6. The fourth Act was an afterthought, and was composed at Florence toward the end of the year. The whole was published, with other poems, in the summer of 1820.

The following extracts from Mrs. Shelley’s long and admirable note show the progress of the poem during its composition, the atmosphere of its creation, and its general scheme:

‘The first aspect of Italy enchanted Shelley; it seemed a garden of delight placed beneath a clearer and brighter heaven than any he had lived under before. He wrote long descriptive letters during the first year of his residence in Italy, which, as compositions, are the most beautiful in the world, and show how truly he appreciated and studied the wonders of nature and art in that divine land.

‘The poetical spirit within him speedily revived with all the power and with more than all the beauty of his first attempts. He meditated three subjects as the groundwork for lyrical Dramas. One was the story of Tasso: of this a slight fragment of a song of Tasso remains. The other was one founded on the book of Job, which he never abandoned in idea, but of which no trace remains among his papers. The third was the Prometheus Unbound. The Greek tragedians were now his most familiar companions in his wanderings, and the sublime majesty of Æschylus filled him with wonder and delight. The father of Greek tragedy does not possess the pathos of Sophocles, nor the variety and tenderness of Euripides; the interest on which he founds his dramas is often elevated above human vicissitudes into the mighty passions and throes of gods and demigods–such fascinated the abstract imagination of Shelley.

‘We spent a month at Milan, visiting the Lake of Como during that interval. Thence we passed in succession to Pisa, Leghorn, the Baths of Lucca, Venice, Este, Rome, Naples, and back again to Rome, whither we returned early in March, 1819. During all this time Shelley meditated the subject of his drama, and wrote portions of it. Other poems were composed during this interval, and while at the Bogni di Lucca he translated Plato’s Symposium. But though he diversified his studies, his thoughts centred in the Prometheus. At last, when at Rome, during a bright and beautiful spring, he gave up his whole time to the composition. The spot selected for his study was, as he mentions in his preface, the mountainous ruins of the Baths of Caracalla. These are little known to the ordinary visitor at Rome. He describes them in a letter, with that poetry, and delicacy, and truth of description, which rendered his narrated impressions of scenery of unequalled beauty and interest.

‘At first he completed the drama in three acts. It was not till several months after, when at Florence, that he conceived that a fourth act, a sort of hymn of rejoicing in the fulfilment of the prophecies with regard to Prometheus, ought to be added to complete the composition.

‘The prominent feature of Shelley’s theory of the destiny of the human species was, that evil is not inherent in the system of the creation, but an accident that might be expelled. This also forms a portion of Christianity; God made earth and man perfect, till he, by his fall,

‘”Brought death into the world and all our woe.”

Shelley believed that mankind had only to will that there should be no evil, and there would be none. It is not my part in these notes to notice the arguments that have been urged against this opinion, but to mention the fact that he entertained it, and was indeed attached to it with fervent enthusiasm. That man could be so perfectionized as to be able to expel evil from his own nature, and from the greater part of the creation, was the cardinal point of his system. And the subject he loved best to dwell on, was the image of One warring with the Evil Principle, oppressed not only by it, but by all, even the good, who were deluded into considering evil a necessary portion of humanity; a victim full of fortitude and hope, and the spirit of triumph emanating from a reliance in the ultimate omnipotence of good. Such he had depicted in his last poem, when he made Laon the enemy and the victim of tyrants. He now took a more idealized image of the same subject. He followed certain classical authorities in figuring Saturn as the good principle, Jupiter the usurping evil one, and Prometheus as the regenerator, who, unable to bring mankind back to primitive innocence, used knowledge as a weapon to defeat evil, by leading mankind beyond the state wherein they are sinless through ignorance, to that in which they are virtuous through wisdom. Jupiter punished the temerity of the Titan by chaining him to a rock of Caucasus, and causing a vulture to devour his still-renewed heart. There was a prophecy afloat in heaven portending the fall of Jove, the secret of averting which was known only to Prometheus; and the god offered freedom from torture on condition of its being communicated to him. According to the mythological story, this referred to the offspring of Thetis, who was destined to be greater than his father. Prometheus at last bought pardon for his crime of enriching mankind with his gifts, by revealing the prophecy. Hercules killed the vulture and set him free, and Thetis was married to Peleus the father of Achilles.

‘Shelley adapted the catastrophe of this story to his peculiar views. The son, greater than his father, born of the nuptials of Jupiter and Thetis, was to dethrone Evil and bring back a happier reign than that of Saturn. Prometheus defies the power of his enemy, and endures centuries of torture, till the hour arrives when Jove, blind to the real event, but darkly guessing that some great good to himself will flow, espouses Thetis. At the moment, the Primal Power of the world drives him from his usurped throne, and Strength, in the person of Hercules, liberates Humanity, typified in Prometheus, from the tortures generated by evil done or suffered. Asia, one of the Oceanides, is the wife of Prometheus–she was, according to other mythological interpretations, the same as Venus and Nature. When the Benefactor of Mankind is liberated, Nature resumes the beauty of her prime, and is united to her husband, the emblem of the human race, in perfect and happy union. In the fourth Act, the poet gives further scope to his imagination, and idealizes the forms of creation, such as we know them, instead of such as they appeared to the Greeks. Maternal Earth, the mighty Parent, is superseded by the Spirit of the Earth–the guide of our planet through the realms of sky–while his fair and weaker companion and attendant, the Spirit of the Moon, receives bliss from the annihilation of Evil in the superior sphere.

‘Shelley develops, more particularly in the lyrics of this drama, his abstruse and imaginative theories with regard to the Creation. It requires a mind as subtle and penetrating as his own to understand the mystic meanings scattered throughout the poem. They elude the ordinary reader by their abstraction and delicacy of distinction, but they are far from vague. It was his design to write prose metaphysical essays on the nature of Man, which would have served to explain much of what is obscure in his poetry; a few scattered fragments of observations and remarks alone remain. He considered these philosophical views of mind and nature to be instinct with the intensest spirit of poetry.

‘More popular poets clothe the ideal with familiar and sensible imagery. Shelley loved to idealize the real–to gift the mechanism of the material universe with a soul and a voice, and to bestow such also on the most delicate and abstract emotions and thoughts of the mind….

‘Through the whole Poem there reigns a sort of calm and holy spirit of love; it soothes the tortured, and is hope to the expectant, till the prophecy is fulfilled, and Love, untainted by any evil, becomes the law of the world….

‘The charm of the Roman climate helped to clothe his thoughts in greater beauty than they had ever worn before; and as he wandered among the ruins, made one with nature in their decay, or gazed on the Praxitelean shapes that throng the Vatican, the Capitol, and the palaces of Rome, his soul imbibed forms of loveliness which became a portion of itself. There are many passages in the Prometheus which show the intense delight he received from such studies, and give back the impression with a beauty of poetical description peculiarly his own.’

Book

A Buddhist Bible

Introduction

A BUDDHIST BIBLE

First Edition

BY DWIGHT GODDARD

[1932, Copyright not renewed]


This is the first etext of A Buddhist Bible to appear on the Internet. One of the favorite books of the Beat writers, particularly the ultimate 'Dharma Bum' Jack Kerouac, A Buddhist Bible has had a huge influence on the growth of Buddhism in the English-speaking world in the 20th century and beyond. This etext was scanned and proofed from an autographed copy of the first edition. We are indeed fortunate that this book slipped into the public domain due to a lack of timely copyright renewal.

The first edition, which was tightly focused on source documents of Zen Buddhism, was self-published in Vermont by Goddard and had 316 pages. Subsequently, a second revised and greatly enlarged edition of 677 pages was published in 1938 by E.P. Dutton (New York), and later republished by Beacon Press. The second edition, which has been in print ever since (see box to right), covers a much wider range of Buddhist texts including Southern Buddhism, some related documents such as the Tao te Ching, and modern texts. The reprint also includes introductions by Robert Aitken and Huston Smith.

Goddard, particularly in this first edition, took the best available translation of key documents and edited them heavily to eliminate repetitious passages and extraneous material. So this is a readers edition, not a critical edition, of these texts. However, he did nothing to water down or simplify the message of the sutras; quite the contrary. One can read this book repeatedly and still come back with new insights on each reading.

--John Bruno Hare, August 28th, 2004.

Title Page

title.jpg, 47kB

Books

Relating to Zen Buddhism

***********

By DWIGHT GODDARD
The Buddha's Golden Path
A MANUAL OF PRACTICAL ZEN BUDDHISM. 1.00

Laotsu's Tao and Wu-Wei
ZEN BUDDHISM WAS GREATLY INFLUENCED BY TAOISM. 1.50

*************

By DAISETZ TEITARO SUZUKI
Essays in Zen Buddhism First Series. 4.00

Translation of the Lankavatara Sutra 4.40

Studies in the Lankavatara Sutra 4.50

These advertisements were part of the text of the original book. They are included for completeness.--JBH.

Preface

INDIAN TYPES of ethical and philosophical Buddhism did not easily find acceptance in China; it took centuries of contact before a distinctively Chinese adaptation of Buddhism was effected that proved to be congenial to Chinese soil. This Chinese type of Buddhism is called Chan in China, and Zen in Japan, and Zen seems to be the more familiar name for it in America and Europe. Other sects have risen and decreased but they proved to be more or less exotic, they never became indigenous as did Zen. An exception may be suspected in the case of the Pure Land Sects, but it should be remembered that the Pure Land Sects developed from Zen and not independently.

To tell the story of this adaptation of the Indian type of Buddhism until it became fixed in the teachings of the Sixth Patriarch, is the purpose of this book. The main part of the book is given over to English Versions of the favorite scriptures of the Zen Sect. To this is added Historical and Literary Introductions and a few notes that seem to be called for to make certain phases of the Sutras more easily intelligible.

Let us recall the fact that the knowledge of Buddhism in America and Europe has all come within a hundred years. For seventy-five years of that time it

p. 10

was presented largely by Christian linguistic scholars who were more or less unconsciously prejudiced against it and who very imperfectly understood its deeper implications. It is only within the last twenty-five years that books written by competent and sympathetic Buddhist scholars have begun to appear. Moreover, knowledge of Buddhism has come at first through translations of Pali texts which represent an older and more primitive type of Buddhism. It is only recently that the great Sanskrit texts, revealing the later philosophical and metaphysical riches of the Mahayana type, have been translated and appreciated. Buddhism was represented by the earlier Christian scholars as being "atheistic" and "pessimistic," which a more sympathetic study of the Sanskrit texts has shown to be a misunderstanding and a misrepresentation. Surely, an eternal process based on unchanging law and leading to peace of mind and self-less compassion and the self-giving of Bodhisattvas and Buddhas, and the undifferentiated Love and Wisdom which is Buddhahood and Dharmakaya is far removed from "atheism"; and the "Blissful peace and cessation of change," and the self-realisation of Noble Wisdom, have nothing in common with "pessimism." But intelligent interest in Buddhism is increasing and the old time question, that used to be the only question, "What is Buddhism?" is giving way to a new question, "What type of Buddhism is best adapted to meet modern questions and modern problems?" To answer these questions is this book presented.

Chan Buddhism in China and Korea and Zen in Japan, for a thousand years, have been powerful in

p. 11

moulding the spiritual, ethical and cultural life of great nations. Today, when Christianity seems to be slipping, it is the most promising of all the great religions to meet the problems of European civilisation which to thinking people are increasingly forboding. Zen Buddhism, with its emphasis on mind-control, its dispassionate rationality, its cheerful industry, not for profit but for service, its simple-hearted love for all animate life, its restraint of desire in all its subtil manifestations, its subjection of desire to wisdom and kindness, its practical and efficient rule of life, its patient acceptance of karma and reincarnation, and its actual foretaste of the blissful peace of Nirvana, all mark it out as being competent to meet the problems of this materialistic and acquisitive age.

*

The original texts of these Scriptures are very corrupt, disorderly, loaded with accretions and, in places very obscure. The purpose of the present Versions is to provide an easier and more inspiring reading. For scholarly study students are expected to refer to the more precise translations of linguists.

The rules that have been followed in preparing these Versions are as follows:

To omit all matter not bearing directly upon the theme of the Sutra.

To arrange into a more orderly sequence.

To interweave and condense cognate teachings.

To interpret obscure words and teachings.

p. 12

The need. for this course will be apparent to any earnest minded person who goes to the Scripture for spiritual guidance, inspiration and comfort.

In the Sutras there are certain Sanskrit words that are of great importance to the understanding of the teaching that are difficult to translate in single words. It seems advisable to speak about them at this time.

DHARMA: Law, Truth. Specifically Dharma has come to be used for the Buddha's teaching as a whole, and also as Truth in its universal aspect.

DHARMAKAYA: Truth-body, Truth-principle, Truth-essence. It is used synonymously with such terms as: Buddhahood, Tathagatahood, Nirvana, Noble Wisdom, Universal or Divine Mind, to refer to Ultimate Reality as being universal, undifferentiated, harmonious, inscrutable.

BUDDHA: The Perfectly Enlightened One; the One who has fully attained the goal of spiritual unification.

TATHAGATA: The One who has "thus come." It is used synonymously with Buddha to express the highest personification of Reality. The two terms may be differentiated in the sense that Buddha is the "ingoing" aspect of spiritual attainment, while Tathagata is the "forth-going" aspect of spiritual self-giving and service, both being manifestations of Dharmakaya.

p. 13

PRAJNA: the active aspect of Dharmakaya; Ultimate Principle of unified Love and Wisdom. It is commonly translated Wisdom but it means far more than that as it includes both the differentiating principle of intellection and the integrating principle of Love. In significance it resembles the Chinese Tao.

ARYA-PRAJNA: Noble Wisdom, synonymous with all other terms denoting Ultimate Reality.

TATHAGATA-GARBHA: The Womb from which emerge all manifestations and all individuations. It is used synonymously with Universal or Divine Mind. Dharmakaya refers to the universal, or pure essence, or "such-ness" of Reality, in contrast to the transformations of the Tathagata.

ALAYA-VIJNANA: Universal, or Divine Mind, or all-conserving Mind. It is used synonymously with Tathagata-garbha and Noble Wisdom.

ARYA-JNANA: that which transcends knowledge, or Transcendental Intelligence. It is used synonymously with Arya-prajna, but signifies the realisation-aspect of Noble Wisdom.

BODHI: is the wisdom content of Prajna.

KARUNA: is the love or compassion content of Prajna.

JNANA: is the knowledge, or cognition, or thinking content of Prajna.

p. 14

MANAS: the intuitive mind; the connecting link between Universal Mind and the individual, or conscious, or discriminating, mind.

MANO-VIJNANA: the conscious, perceiving, discriminating, thinking, intellectual, mind.

VIJNANA: the principle of discrimination; the sense-minds.

CITTA: mind in general.

DWIGHT GODDARD.

Thetford, Vermont, U. S. A.
1932
.

History of Ch’an Buddhism

HISTORY OF CHAN BUDDHISM PREVIOUS TO THE TIMES OF HUI-NENG (WEI-LANG)

THE TRAFFIC between India and China in very early times was very considerable in spite of the tremendous difficulties and dangers of the passes over the high Himalayas, the Tibetan deserts and the appalling wastes and tempests of the Southern seas. But in spite of the difficulties intimations of Buddhism began to percolate into China certainly as early as the First Century before the Christian Era and by the First Century after eminent Indian scholars were finding it worth their trouble to make the arduous journey for the sake of the welcome and the honor they received at the Imperial Court and by the literati, so that by the Second Century Buddhist scriptures were being rapidly translated into Chinese.

The Chinese while being notably intellectual were not especially philosophical or religiously minded. They were a practical people and their culture was largely given up to ethics, history, poetry and art. The exuberant imagery, subtle symbolism, erudite philosophy, and deep psychological insight of the Mahayana Buddhist Scriptures came as an intellectual revelation to Chinese scholars and was everywhere received

p. 16

with scholarly enthusiasm. For five hundred years this went on with increasing momentum but. with very little adaptation and change to make it more in line with Chinese mentality and racial habits of thought and national customs. To be sure it had found a certain affinity with Confucian scholarship and ethical idealism, and with Taoist mysticism and naturalistic iconoclasm. All the outstanding Buddhist leaders were Indian born and educated and it was an Indian type of Buddhism that was being pressed upon the Chinese converts; it was Indian philosophy that was being studied and Indian ways of meditation that were being practiced; Buddhism was still a foreign cult. It was not until the Fourth Century that signs of the birth and development of a Chinese type of Buddhism began to be apparent.

When Buddhism reached China it found two main currents of cultural conditions with which it had to contend and make terms, namely, Confucianism and Taoism, neither of which, strictly speaking, were religions. The teachings of Confucius were intellectual and were almost wholly devoted to inculcating habits of ethical idealism among all classes of people. By its presentation of an ideal "superior man" and its emphasis on "propriety" and "obedience" it appealed principally to the educated and official classes and tended to conservatism and the perpetuation of ancient customs and intellectual ideas. It was an admirable culture that resulted in a high type of social ethics and customs second to none even today. It was no mean protagonist for Buddhism to meet, but it had little in common with the rationalistic and disciplinary

p. 17

and self-less ideals of Buddhism. It tended to individual pride of intellect and averice for position and power, while effecting at the same time ideals of a noble and courteous social structure. Buddhism tended toward mind-control; Confucianism tended toward mind culture; Buddhism was revolutionary and iconoclastic; Confucianism was conservative and inert.

As we have said, at first Confucianists welcomed the amazing and abounding philosophy and metaphysics and psychology of Indian Buddhism, but later they came to realise that ultimately it would undermine the foundations of Confucianism. In its distrust of Buddhism during the centuries from the Sixth to the Ninth it inspired wave after wave of nationalistic persecution. It was not until the Eighth and Ninth centuries that it came to appreciate the good qualities of Buddhism and learned not only to tolerate it but also to accept it as supplying those mystical elements which the human heart craves and which in its own teachings were entirely lacking.

The teachings of Taoism on the other hand had many things in common with Buddhism; it can be truly said that Laotsu by his doctrines of Tao and Wu-wei had prepared the way and made ready a welcome for the coming of Buddhism. Nevertheless, there was something in the easy-going laissez-faire naturalism of Laotsu that was diametrically opposed to the austere restraint and discipline of Buddhism. They both loved the quiet of solitude, but the Taoist sage wanted a little congenial company with whom to play checkers and drink wine and quote poetry; while the

p. 18

[paragraph continues] Buddhist saint sought real solitude that he might be less hindered in his strenuous concentration of mind in the attainment of a self-realisation of ultimate truth.

The doctrines of Tao and Buddha could be harmonised without strain in both their active aspect and their essence of mingled wisdom and beneficence. As the Sanskrit terms of Indian Buddhism slowly gave way to Chinese, the term Tao was freely used for Buddhahood both by itself and in many compounds; in fact at one time it looked as though the term Tao would almost entirely displace the Sanskrit term of Buddha. If a distinction is made in the meaning content of the two terms perhaps the term Buddha came to have a more static significance colored as it was by the conception of the Buddha in samadhi with all its realisation of blissful peace and equanimity; while Tao always carried a significance of dynamic activity. The words Tao and Buddha are often used almost synonymously, but still there remains a shade of distinction between the active and passive sides of reality. One of the early Chan Masters said: "Buddha is Tao, Tao is dhyana." The common use of Tao in Buddhist names is also very significant.

To illustrate this free use of Tao by the Chan Masters, let me quote a strictly Buddhist production written by Rinsai which is much admired even down to today. It was given to me by my own Master as part of his instruction.

"Buddha-nature is the symbol of purity;
Dharma-mind is the symbol of enlightenment;
The Tao is the Way of unobstructed truth
. p. 19
In essence these three are truly One,
But by themselves they are merely words.
The mind of the Tao-man should be pure, enlightened and free
."

Originally Laotsu had a conception of the value of mind-concentration as an intuitive method of arriving at a self-realisation of reality, but in Taoism it had become buried under a burden of self-induced trance and vision and revelation as a guide for the attainment of success and good luck. Nevertheless, there was an underlying similarity or affinity between the conceptions of the value of concentration of mind in both Buddhism and Taoism.

When Buddhism came to China it most decidedly had to make terms with Taoism, for while Confucianism was the cult of the literati, Taoism was the faith of the common people. Taoism was indigenous and while the teachings of Laotsu had been atheistic and sensible, in the course of a thousand years Taoism had taken up into itself the crude animism of a great racial inheritance to make it most decidedly spiritistic and superstitious and geomantic.

Moreover there was the Taoist doctrine of Wu-wei. Wu-wei can be translated, "non-assertion." In Taoism it generally carries the meaning of the acceptance of Tao as being infinitely wise and beneficent and powerful, and therefore Taoism emphasises the futility of Interfering with the cosmic currents, and the wisdom of falling in with the natural unfoldment of the Tao in both nature and human affairs. To Taoists, the human interference either by force or legislation or

p. 20

culture with the course of nature is looked upon as the height of foolishness. To take things as they are and as they come is the teaching of Taoist wisdom. In one sense this is what Buddhism by its doctrine of "patient acceptance" teaches, but in another sense, Buddhism is quite opposed to any lazy inertness in meeting the difficulties of life. While Buddhism teaches the patient acceptance of the results of old karma, it also teaches that good karma is to be attained by the disciplined restrain of desire, habits of clear thinking, the extinction of egoism, and concentrated meditation, thus making a rational interference with the course of nature which if yielded to would result in suffering, the course of wisdom.

Another circumstance that tended undoubtedly to the yielding of Buddhism to Taoist influences in these early days was to escape the virulence of the nationalistic persecutions which were fomented by Confucianists and which for two hundred years were directed against all forms of Buddhism as being a foreign religion prejudicial to the welfare of the state. This persecution was largely escaped as Buddhism became disguised as a form of Taoism. And often it was not so much a disguise as it was the real thing. For instance, in the case of Hsuanchien who is usually reckoned as a Chan Buddhist of a rather extreme type, he is reported to have said to his disciples:

"Here there is no Buddha, nor Patriarch. Bodhidharma was only an old bearded barbarian. The Bodhisattvas are only dung-heap coolies. Nirvana and bodhi are dead stumps to tie your donkey to. The twelve divisions of the Tripitika are only lists of

p. 21

ghosts and sheets of paper fit only to wipe the puss from your skin. And all your four merits and ten stages are mere ghosts lingering in their decaying graves. Can these have any thing to do with your salvation?"

Of course such words as these must not be taken too literally for the literature of Chan Buddhism abounds with the most extravagant and seemingly foolish remarks of the Masters that to be understood and make sense of must be considered intuitively rather than logically. But they all go to show how serious and deep was the reaction between Buddhism and Taoism in those early centuries. At this distance of time it is hard to realise how difficult was the process toward adjustment between these two cults that had so much that was similar. For a century it was a question whether the result would be Taoism as modified by Buddhism, or Buddhism modified by Taoism. Most fortunately it proved to be the latter. Even down to day Taoist temples and Taoist monks are often indistinguishable from Buddhist temples. In 1927 the writer visited a Taoist friend at his hermitage-temple just outside of Nanking; it was arranged and decorated precisely like a Buddhist temple, had a Buddhist image of Amida, but when we left, the Taoist monk gave us as a parting gift, a copy of Laotsu's Tao Teh King. In Henri Borel's well known essays�1 dealing with Laotzu's philosophy, his Taoist monk gives to his parting guest a beautiful image of Kwanon and in the essays themselves it is hard to say whether they are more Taoist or Buddhist.

p. 22

Dr. Hu-shih, the eminent Chinese philosopher and. historian in a tentative and as yet unpublished study of this very subject and period, speaks of this reaction as "a revolt of Taoism against Buddhism"; while Dr. Daisetz Suzuki, the equally eminent authority of Zen Buddhism, speaks of it as the natural evolution of Buddhism under Taoist conditions. Of the two it would seem as though Dr. Suzuki was the nearer right, but in either case the result was the same: the development of a type of Buddhism that was free from the extravagancies of Indian philosophising and intellectual inertia and sentimental personalisations, and true to the original commonsense practicality of Shakyamuni.

By the Fourth Century most of the outstanding Mahayana scriptures had been translated into Chinese. Among them were many books about the Indian yoga practices of breathing and other methods for the attainment of mind-control and concentrated meditation, that made up the Indian practice of Dhyana. The Chinese were a practically minded people and had never cared very much for philosophy and metaphysics; being intellectual they were amazed and excited by the elaborate metaphysics and exuberant literature of the Mahayana, but they were more particularly attracted to the practical systems of dhyana that promised tangible results of enlightenment and ecstasy and blissful peace that could be tested and evaluated. It naturally came about, therefore, that the first serious popular acceptance of Buddhism was in the practice of Dhyana, and as the most popular subject for meditation and concentration was the Divine Name, with its

p. 23

promise of re-birth in the Pure Land, the later sects that go under that name, on the surface, appear to have a certain claim to priority. But it is a question whether this earliest acceptance can rightly be called a "salvation by faith" type of Buddhism, for its emphasis on dhyana practice would mark it as a "meditation" type. Much depends on whether the phrase, "Na-moo-mit-to-fu" was used in those early days as a subject for meditation and concentration, or as a mantra with magic working powers. Dr. Suzuki has discussed this question at length in his Essays in Zen Buddhism, Second Series, where it can be studied to advantage.

The first name that emerges in this connection is Tao-an (���-385). He was a notable monk, learned in both Confucian and Taoist lore and books of his are still extant dealing with these yoga practices of dhyana and commenting upon them. It is easy to see from them that he looked upon these Indian practices as good working methods for attaining Taoist ideals of non-activity and non-desire.

Tao-an left a disciple, Hui-yuan (333-416), who was also a great scholar and learned in Taoist mysticism. He is most remembered as the founder of a Buddhist center or fraternity near Kuling, known as the White Lotus Society, whose characteristic was their concentration on the Divine Name, in consequence of which he is commonly looked upon as the founder of the Pure Land Sects of China and Japan. But history shows that he was more interested in the serious practise of dhyana and to him the repetition of the Divine Name was the best method for attaining concentration of mind. There was nothing new in the practice of

p. 24

dhyana; it had existed in India for a millennium and was taken over by Shakyamuni and given a new content of meaning as the Eighth Stage of his Noble Path. As it appeared in China it was at first largely a practise of Indian yoga methods as an aid to meditation but it had degenerated into a popular and easy going "still-sitting" and a lazy habit of thinking. The characteristic that now began to emerge in the teachings and interest of Tao-an and Hui-yuan was the more definite focussing of mind and its more energetic character.

After Hui-yuan there came into prominence one of his disciples, Tao-seng (���-434), who with his disciple, Tao-you, developed the doctrine of "Sudden Awakening," as against the almost universal belief in the "Gradual Attainment," that thereafter entered into Chinese Buddhism to condition its distinctive characteristic. By this teaching the old conception of the gradual attainment of Buddhahood through myriads of kotis of re-births was challenged and in its place was offered, through the right concentration of dhyana, the possibility of sudden and perfect enlightenment. The Chinese Chan Buddhism that came to monopolise the religious field was the mingling of these two distinctively Chinese elements: A more strenuous dhyana, and the possibility of a sudden awakening and attainment of enlightenment, with the Indian philosophy of the Mahayana.

The next outstanding name, and the one to whom is usually given the chief credit for being the founder of Chan Buddhism in China, is Bodhidharma. He was an Indian monk of princely family who must have arrived in South China about 470 A.D., and who lived

p. 25

and travelled in China for fifty years until about 520. This length of stay in China is much longer than is usually given but it appears to be necessary to account for all that is recorded concerning him. He must have been a most extraordinary man, a great personality, stubborn, taciturn, gruff and positive, but withal, honest, straightforward and clear minded. There are two incidents in his life that will bear repeating. Emperor Wu of Liang was very favorably inclined toward Buddhism; he founded temples, supported monks, and translated scriptures, but when he asked Bodhidharma during an interview what credit he had earned, the gruff old monk replied, "None whatever, your majesty." To the question, "What is the first principle of the holy doctrine?" Bodhidharma replied, "Vast emptiness, and there is nothing in it to be called 'holy,' Sire."

"Who is it, then, that confronts me?" asked the Emperor.

"I do not know, Your Majesty."

There is a famous poem that refers to the above incident, that has for these present times a deep significance:

"I don't know," replied Bodhidharma,
Baffled by the classical speech of the Imperial Court;
But if the Emperor had been a man of insight and spirit
He would have chased after Bodhidharma,
Over the desert sand to Tien-mu."

Bodhidharma, finding in the North no interest in his presentation of Buddhism, returned to the South and shut himself in his own monastery of Shao-lin, to

p. 26

which few disciples ever came and where, tradition says, he practised for nine years a kind of concentrative dhyana that came to be called, "wall gazing." It consisted in an honest and earnest effort to definitely realise the oneness of one's true Buddha-nature with Universal Buddhahood, by the single method of mind-concentration on Mind-essence. To Bodhidharma, books, logical ideas, study, ritual, worship were useless; only simple but "seeking" and tireless "wall-gazing" was sufficient. All distinctions of self and not-self, comfort or discomfort, joy or suffering, desire or aversion, success or failure, and mental discrimination of all kinds must be ignored and left behind, in the sole effort to merge oneself with Mind-essence which alone is reality, Inasmuch as one's own inner conscience is Mind-essence, why seek for it elsewhere? This "treasure of the heart" is the only Buddha there ever was, or is, or ever will be. "There is no Buddha but your own. thoughts. Buddha is Tao. Tao is dhyana. Dhyana cannot be understood by the definitions of the wise. Dhyana is a man's successful seeing into his own fundamental nature." "I have come from India only to teach you that Buddha is thought. I have no interest in monastic rules, nor ascetic practises, nor miraculous powers, nor merely sitting in meditation."

In Bodhidharma's distrust of scriptures and intellectual knowledge, he made an exception of the Lankavatara Sutra. The reason for this exception was because that Sutra alone taught the doctrine of the Self-realisation of the Oneness of all things in Mind-essence. When at last after nine years of "wall-gazing" he gained one disciple who understood him, Hui-ke

p. 27

[paragraph continues] (486-593). Bodhidharma gave him certain instruction that could only be transmitted from mind to mind, and gave him his begging-bowl and his robe and his copy of the Lankavatara Sutra, which afterward became the insignia of the Patriarchate, thus constituting Hui-ke as the Second Patriarch. There is a tradition that Bodhidharma soon after returned to India, but the place and time of his death is unknown.

There is no doubt that at first and for a long time the "Sudden Awakening" Chan school was a hard one to attend. It was well over the border of asceticism and self-denial, with no marks of sympathy between Master and disciple to make it bearable, but from that hard school rose a succession of great Masters and deep experiences and an extraordinarily virulent social influence.

Concerning the teachings of Bodhidharma and the Chan sect, Dr. Suzuki quotes the following passage:

"The Master (Bodhidharma) first stayed in Shao-lin Temple for nine years and when at last he taught the Second Patriarch it was in this manner. Externally keep yourself away from all relationships, and internally cherish no hankerings in your heart. When your mind becomes like an upright wall (that is, resistant to the entrance of discriminative ideas) you will enter into the path. At first Hui-ke tried in various ways to explain (to himself) the reason of mind-only but failed to realise the truth itself. The Master would say: 'No, no,' but would do nothing to explain it or make clear what Mind-essence in its undifferentiated, no-thought, state might be. Later on Hui-ke said to the Master, 'Now I know how to keep myself away from all relationships.'

p. 28

[paragraph continues] When the Master asked him to demonstrate it, Hui-ke replied: 'I know it always in a most convincing manner but to express it in words--that is impossible.' Thereupon said the Master, 'That is the Mind-essence itself that is transmitted by all the Buddhas. Have no doubt about it.'"

The story runs that Hui-ke before he was finally successful had tried again and again to gain Bodhidharma's consent to become his Master, even waiting at his gate one cold winter's night while the snow fell to his knees, and was finally successful only when he cut off his right arm to show the earnestness of his desire. Hui-ke was very learned in the Chinese classics and also in the common lore of Buddhism; he seems to have come to Bodhidharma at first more to win his approval than with any great expectation of added instruction, but after he had attained his deep experience with Bodhidharma, he made light of his great learning, became very humble minded and earnestly' sought for perfect enlightenment. After the passing of Bodhidharma, Hui-ke did not at once assume leadership as the Second Patriarch, but withdrew to a hermitage in the mountains and lived quite humbly with the lowest classes of society. He did not shun preaching but tried to do it quietly and inconspicuously. He was finally murdered by an envious Master whose disciples Hui-ke had unintentionally drawn away.

The Third Patriarch was Seng-tsan (���-606) about whom very little is known. One tradition has it that he suffered from leprosy and therefore retired to a hermitage in the mountains. There is a record of his transmitting the begging-bowl and the robe to Tao-

p. 29

hsin (580-651). Tao-hsin was also a recluse and very little is known of him except that he left a composition which has always been highly valued by disciples of Chan Buddhism.

The Fifth Patriarch was Hung-jen (605-675). It is recorded of him that he was a near neighbor or relative of Seng-tsan and came to be with him when quite young. With his assumption of the Patriarchate there was introduced a decided change in the character of the presentation of Chan Buddhism. Hitherto the Patriarchs had been of a retiring disposition, or else the times had changed making it possible for the Masters to work more publicly and assemble disciples. At any rate we find Hung-jen the head of a great establishment with hundreds of disciples and attaining imperial favor.

Among the disciples of Hung-jen were two who afterwards came into great public notice; Hui-neng whose Sutra we shall study in the following chapters and Shen-hsui, who was second only in rank in the great monastery to Hung-jen. Shen-hsui was a very learned man and a notable orator and teacher, but he was egoistic and deficient in the insight that marks the true Chan Master. Hung-jen was aware of this and so when the time came for him to appoint a successor, he passed by Shen-hsui and appointed Hun-neng. Having failed in securing the coveted rank of Sixth Patriarch, Shen-hsui returned to the North from whence he had originally come and there established a rival school that for a time was very successful and he came to be highly honored by the Emperor. His school differed from that of Hung-jen and came to be known as

p. 30

the "Gradual Attainment," or Northern School of Chan Buddhism, but at his death it was less successful and finally lost standing.

This brings us to the main interest of this book, the life and Sutra of Hui-neng, the Sixth Patriarch, but before we do so it is wise to say a few words about the general character of Chan Buddhism as it was in his day and show how it differed from the ordinary run of Buddhism throughout China. As we have already pointed out Buddhism as generally held was of the foreign type which had been presented by Indian monks and Indian scriptures. It was largely given up to a study of the various scriptures and an easy-going practice of dhyana. It was still a foreign religion, and only slightly affected by its Chinese environment. On the contrary Chan Buddhism was not at all intellectual, was far from being easy-going, and had become profoundly influenced by Chinese Taoism and Chinese customs.

In closing this introductory chapter it is well to sum up the characteristics of Chan Buddhism as they differed from the orthodox Buddhism of that early period. Negatively, it was more atheistic. Shakyamuni had been more agnostic concerning the nature of Reality, Nestorian Christianity was emphatically theistic, while Taoism was decidedly atheistic, looking upon Tao as being Ultimate Principle rather than personality. Mahayanistic Buddhism in contact with the great theistic religions of Central Asia had grown to be more philosophic, looking upon Reality in its three phases of essence, principle, and transitory appearances as existing in a state of undifferentiated Oneness.

p. 31

In contact with the polytheism of India and the animistic spiritism of Tibet it had absorbed much of their love for differentiated images and ranks of divinities; but that was for the accommodation of its more ignorant believers than for its elite. Under the influence of Taoism, Chanism became at first quite decidedly atheistic and iconoclastic, shading off later on into a more tolerant attitude, but even down to today, Chan in China and Zen in Japan make very little of their images which are used more for decoration than for worship. The deification of Shakyamuni Buddha that marked the Hinayana of Ceylon and Burma is almost entirely absent in Chan; in fact, the adoration shown Amitabha is much more apparent, and images of Kwan-yin, Manjushri and Kasyapa are just as frequently seen, while adoration to the image of the Founder of each particular temple and even for the Master of the Founder, seems to be more sentimentally sincere and earnest.

Further, under the influence of Taoism, Chan Buddhism had very little use for the Sutras that the Buddhism of those early days made so much of, the Lankavatara being the only exception. Chanists, intent in their strenuous practice of Dhyana, had found a more direct and immediate realisation of Reality and therein were satisfied. The same can be said of all the rest of the common paraphenalia of worship; they had no use for ritual, or public services, or prayer, or priests, or ranks of Dignity, or sentimentalism or emotionalism of any kind whatever. Every thing had to give way to the one thing of self-realisation of Oneness.

p. 32

The result of this contact of Indian Buddhism with Taoism, therefore, was to develop in Chan a type of Buddhism that was coldly rational, experiential, positive and iconoclastic, and that led to a life of extreme simplicity, strict discipline, humility, industry, sympathy with all animate life, and to an equitable and cheerful peace of mind. At first Chan Buddhists had no temples of their own, nor organisations of any kind; they were either isolated individuals living a solitary life, or were groups of disciples gathered about a Master. This later developed into the calling of Chan Masters to be the heads of monasteries belonging to other sects, and still later to the acquiring of their own monasteries and temples, with all their vested abbots of high degree, and ceremonial ritual and worldly pride. Nevertheless, as of old, the true Chan monk is more often to be found in some solitary hermitage, busy and cheerful at his manual work, humble and zealous at his practice of Dhyana, intent on the one goal of self-realisation of enlightenment, Nirvana and Buddhahood.

While Bodhidharma is usually credited with being the founder of Chan Buddhism and rightly so, it was Hui-neng the Sixth Patriarch who gave it more definite character and permanent form that time has tested and approved. Chan Buddhism seems to have discerned the essentials of Shakyamuni's teachings and spirit better than any other sect, and to have developed their deeper implications more faithfully. This development came through its contact with Chinese Taoism under the lead of Bodhidharma and Hui-neng, making it a virile and wholesome influence for all

p. 33

nations thereafter. Hui-yuan yielded to the seduction of the Divine Name and thereby gained the credit of being the founder of the Pure Land sects with all their glamour of "salvation by faith." Chih-chi (���-597), one of China's greatest philosophic minds, grew up as an earnest Chan Buddhist but yielding to the lure of his profound study of the Scriptures became known as the founder of the Tien-Tai school of philosophic Buddhism, Shen-shui, the learned Master of the very temple where Hui-neng worked as a laborer in the granary, yielded to the lure of egoism and popularity to become the founder of the passing school of "Gradual Attainment."

But Hui-neng more or less illiterate as he was said to be, had the force of personality, and insight and common-sense, to determine the essentials of the Dharma and the humble and patient zeal to work out and to apply them in the wisest way. The outstanding features of Hui-neng's Chan were as follows:

1. Distrust of all Scriptures and dogmatic teachings.

2. An enquiring mind and earnest search into the depths of one's own nature.

3. Humble but positive faith in the possibilities of such an enquiring search, in a sudden self-realisation of enlightenment, Nirvana and Buddahood.

4. Loyal and patient acceptance of such self-realisation in a following life of simplicity, self-restraint, industry, and sympathy with all animate life.

In arriving at these convictions Hui-neng's inherited and experiential acquaintance with Taoism was

p. 34

very influential. He was said to be illiterate but this could have been only relatively true of one who had mastered the Diamond Sutra and frequently discoursed to his disciples about the other great Sutras of the Mahayana. His study of the Diamond Sutra had convinced him of the truth of "Emptiness" and prepared his mind for the later truth of "Self-realisation of Mind-essence" which the Lankavatara taught him. But it was the conception of the Tao, active, limitless, inscrutably wise and benevolent, universal, eternal, ineffable, that gave depth and substance to his convictions and brought sympathy and patience with himself and with all animate life. It was the blending of all these elements in the mind and spirit of Hui-neng, the Sixth Patriarch, that through him gave Chinese Chan, and Japanese Zen, Buddhism their characteristic form and spirit.

Hui-neng was deeply influenced by his inherited and personal acquaintance with Taoism. In his leadership and teachings he made little of the personal Buddha and very much of Prajna in which he saw the Ultimate Principle of Tao in both its irradiant and integrating forms, as both intellection and compassion. The term he used for Ultimate Reality, and made so much of, was Mind-essence. A self-realisation of this was all the Buddha he cared about. It was Dharmakaya and Buddhahood and Nirvana and Tathata and Prajna. It was universal, undifferentiated and inscrutable, but was clouded over and hidden by karma and discriminative thought and desire and grasping. If these clouds could be driven away, and they all might be, then it would shine forth in all its pristine purity

p. 35

and potency. To Hui-neng, perfect enlightenment and self-realisation of Mind-essence and Buddhahood were the same thing. This perfect culmination of life would come suddenly as the result of an earnest and sincere concentration of mind on the search for it with in one's own mind, and this was the only way it could come. In his mind all scripture and all teachings were subordinate to the self-realisation attained suddenly by earnest Dhyana and Samadhi.


Footnotes

21:1 Laotsu's Tao and Wu-wei, by Dwight Goddard and Henri Borel. Pub. by Brentano.

A Buddhist Bible has had a huge influence on the growth of Buddhism in the English-speaking world in the 20th century.

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Autobiography of a Yogi

This book, which introduced many westerners to meditation and yoga, describes Paramhansa Yogananda’s search for a guru, and his encounters with leading spiritual figures, blended with priceless superphysical information needed to balance the Western material efficiency with Eastern spiritual efficiency.

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Autobiography of a Yogi
by Paramhansa Yogananda

Original First Edition, Copyright 1946,
First Online Edition

Purchase a copy of Autobiography
of a Yogi

Ananda and Crystal Clarity
Publishers
are pleased to announce the online publication of the complete first edition of
Paramhansa Yogananda’s Autobiography of a Yogi.

Through this online version, we hope to make Yogananda’s spiritual classic freely available to
seekers throughout the world. The print version of the 1946 Autobiography is available direct from Crystal Clarity Publishers through secure
online ordering. We hope you enjoy this free gift of the first online edition.

Ananda was founded by Swami Kriyananda, a direct disciple of
Yogananda. Kriyananda was inspired by his guru to start ‘World Brotherhood Colonies’.
Ananda, and its sister colonies throughout the world, are the fulfillment of Yogananda’s
dream. See Chapter 48, in this 1946 edition, to read Yogananda’s own words on World
Brotherhood Colonies.

Autobiography of a Yogi is not an ordinary book. It is a spiritual
treasure. To read its message of hope to all truthseekers is to begin a great adventure.

This is a verbatim reproduction of the original 1946 edition, complete with the original
photos, many of them not seen since earlier editions. Although subsequent printings, reflecting
revisions made after the Yogananda’s death in 1952, have sold over a million copies and have
been translated into more than 19 languages, the few thousand of the original have long since
disappeared into the hands of collectors.

Now, with this online version, the 1946 edition is widely available, with all its inherent
power, just as Yogananda first presented it.

Notes on Using the Online Autobiography of a Yogi, by
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You can begin by going straight to Chapter 1, or finding your favorite chapter in the Table of
Contents. All the photos are linked from the List of Illustrations, or you can link to the
photos from each chapter, where they appeared in the 1946 edition.

All the original footnotes appear in this first online edition. Just click on the linked number
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article on Self-Realization Fellowship*
lawsuits against Ananda.

*CBPP Note: This should mean the ability to Publish, though I have yet to ask either body if I may.
The Court ruled that Self-Realization Fellowship did not own the copyrights for certain books Yogananda
published before his passing. Based on this decision, Ananda was able to publish the first edition of
Yogananda’s Autobiography of a Yogi.

Ananda was founded in 1968 by Swami Kriyananda
(J. Donald Walters)
, a direct disciple of Yogananda, and is dedicated to sharing the
teachings of Yogananda worldwide.

Article

Savitri

Conversion: 4 Sep 2011
Time: 8h
Wiki: Savitri: A Legend and a Symbol
Source: sriaurobindoashram.org
Source: auromere.wordpress.com

“Sri Aurobindo’s epic Savitri has already inaugurated the New Age of Illumination and is probably the greatest epic in the English language… The most comprehensive, integrated, beautiful and perfect cosmic poem ever composed. It is perhaps the most powerful artistic work in the world for expanding man’s mind towards the Absolute.”
– Dr. Raymond Piper, Professor of Philosophy at Syracuse University

It’s style inspired by Shelly’s Prometheus Unbound, the central theme revolves around the transcendence of man as the consummation of terrestrial evolution, and the emergence of an immortal supramental gnostic race upon earth.

The tale of Satyavan and Savitri is recited in the Mahabharata as a story of conjugal love conquering death. But this legend is, as shown by many features of the human tale, one of the many symbolic myths of the Vedic cycle. Satyavan is the soul carrying the divine truth of being within itself but descended into the grip of death and ignorance; Savitri is the Divine Word, daughter of the Sun, goddess of the supreme Truth who comes down and is born to save; Aswapati, the Lord of the Horse, her human father, is the Lord of Tapasya, the concentrated energy of spiritual endeavour that helps us to rise from the mortal to the immortal planes; Dyumatsena, Lord of the Shining Hosts, father of Satyavan, is the Divine Mind here fallen blind, losing its celestial kingdom of vision, and through that loss its kingdom of glory. Still this is not a mere allegory, the characters are not personified qualities, but incarnations or emanations of living and conscious Forces with whom we can enter into concrete touch and they take human bodies in order to help man and show him the way from his mortal state to a divine consciousness and immortal life.

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Biblios

The Cselian Book and Publishing Project (Biblios) preserves notable works in a modern, easy to read, online manner.

Biblios will let you save bookmarks online, make and share quotes, take notes etc, and solves some difficulties viz:

  • Books online are difficult to read (bad site design, too many ads / images), and lack some features.
  • PDFs dont show search results with context and are not suitable for reading across multiple devices.
  • Often when reading a hard-copy, we want to store memorable bits for future reading / sharing with friends.
  • Other languages are not always given special attention nor are the transliterations.

Copyright

None of these books have copyright permissions yet.

You must first agree to our usage terms before reading them:

My purpose in using this site is to read or use as a reference, books that I have already read or own. Also I’d like to preview unread books. I do declare that my intention is not to read books for free, denying due royalty owed to the Author and Publishers.

In the long run, we hope to contact copyright holders and have them allow:

  • readers agree to something like our Fair Usage Terms and can be tracked by them.
  • Books only being available if you pay for them.
  • quotes / search results being available, and perhaps additionally a previewable amount of the book.
  • People sponsor other readers.
  • We do fundraisers to buy copyrights.

Whose Works:

The works of any and all are welcome, if it meets our criteria – progressive in nature, truly inspirational, and does not refute the validity of other faiths / works.
Having only just begun, the focus is on Indian Spiritualism, but would like to expand to any mature works and other faiths.
We are also trying rethink online publication and help smaller organizations and individuals do so at no cost.

Copyright and Revenue:

There are several kinds of content we want on our site viz:

  • Works that are already free.
  • Works that can be had free or at a nominal price.
  • Donors pay it forward to X number of friends and other interested readers.
  • We do collection runs to buy out copyright holders and set the works free.
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Works

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About

YieldMore is a website to compile useful information and a place to promote the work of people in a position to improve the quality of life of others. Its also a place to find volunteer work, express yourselves, plan change, and develop into better persons. We also curate good content (books / movies / songs) in an effort to help people with their appreciation of language and culture. For a list of our ventures, see here: http://yieldmore.org/about/#info-link (you can access this popup by clicking the animated logo on the top left of the screen).

Anyone with an open mind, peaceful nature and a quest for progress is welcome to our community. See the video slideshow, PR Material, 2015 overview or old introduction.

Yield refers to the output (in agriculture), so what we’re trying to do is share stuff that helps us yieldmore out of life. Our Mandate and our Charter explain a bit its vision and spirit.

Byline / Values

Recreation, Learning / Sharing, Self Expression, Quality Relationships, Personal Growth, Giving Back / Helping

Peacefulness, Declutter, Deconstruction, Quality, Decentralize and Omission of the Negative.

Objectives

  • collaboratively build a website of inspiring content
  • share ideas that improve the quality of life
  • try to solve problems through the ideas we share here
  • encourage people to quote, discuss and summarize works for others
  • be inspired to act, in a spirit of kindness
  • embrace the path of Learn, Heal, Share, Express and Yield More

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