The Journey

Actions accrue infallible results. Action and results are two sides of a coin. Neither can exist without the other.

Actions generated with the emergent I – karta, brings an inseparable result to the very karta. And it is the karma done by the karta which produces the field of experience – bhoga bhumi.

Since results are now clinging to the karta till they fructify, the disengaged conscious sense on death, engages again with another body to process the results and the experience of it.

All experiences of karma phala end in either sukha or dukha, happiness or sorrow. They are either pleasure giving results or sorrowful results. To convert the sorrow into happiness, the conscious being again identifies with the body and initiates another action which sets the ball rolling for yet another cycle of karta-karma-phala-bhumi-sukha/dukha. And repeat.

Two merged rivers travelling as one, the tapestry it travels, journey it undergoes is crafted by the river. It merges in the ocean. The journey is not culminated. It falls to form rivers again.

Similarly actions with I sense are set in motion to keep canvassing its field of experience through various lokas, and the experience of sukha-dukha gets owned by the emergent I- the individual.

This journey is samsara. And death does not end it.

– Deepti Vishwanath

What is death?

Death is disintegration of the material layers which constitute the body. A conscious sense is a separate entity which does not disintegrate, but just disengages from the body. This conscious sense is currently limited to ‘I’ and so presently, I refers to consciousness + body and thoughts which are recognised as within the body, though not concrete.

Engaging the I sense, one performs many actions in a lifetime. These actions are not only at the body level, but also at the level of thoughts. And most often speech is also involved in it.

Actions thus generated, perpetuate a cycle. Actions are done only with an aim to gain something most often, or with an aim to avoid something. Both gaining and avoiding are generally inseparable, and thus they are one with reference to the outcome, but the predominant between the two triggers the course of actions and thereby the end which is aimed.

When the end fructifies, it becomes owned as an experience by the conscious being. To specify again, a conscious being is a conscious sense seen within a material aggregate called the body, the apparent combination springs the ‘I’ claiming the body as oneself and mixing up with the inmiscible consciousness. Consciousness and matter are like oil and water. They can be associated but can never be one. Similarly body and consciousness can be associated but can never be mixed up. When they are associated, an emergent ‘I’ claims them as one, hazing the clear separation of consciousness and the body, merging them like two distinct rivers. At the juncture where the meet they are distinctly seen. Similarly, when one traces back one’s origin of I, the separate conscious nature and the nature of the body, representing all matter, becomes evident as distinct.

‘I’ gets falsified as never having a true identity. It is the body which has a birth and body disintegrates. There is no death or even a change possible for the consciousness. Recognising this is liberation.

©️ Deepti Vishwanath 🙏🏼

Give rest to our Earth please! 

Today as I sit in my balcony, 

With a cup -o- tea in my hand,

I hear so many birds.

From all directions,

Non stop.

Uninterrupted they enter my ears,

Giving me immeasurable joy.

It is a grand musical, trust me! 

Watch how the brain relaxes,

Vessels open up, 

The heart beat slows down,

Trying to match their frequency.

I feel one with them.

They bind me to nature.

Not vulnerable or weak, 

Not wanting supremacy or control.

Simply blending in the pure existence,

Where we have no existence! 

You know why? 

Today mankind is forced to withdraw indoors.

And all the noise the artificial 

mechanics make, are gone.

A few minutes can leave such an impact!

O Man! Then to heal thyself, 

You will have to let the earth rest.

She is compassionate, caring, tolerant.

But tired now. Let her replenish.

She cannot continue to absorb

The mindlessness in the name of progress.

Slow down now.

Match the steps with nature.

Tune in the rhythm with other life forms.

And you will experience an eternal dance. 

Else, earth doesn’t need your intelligence.

She will find her way to heal herself.

She doesn’t need you, you need her.

Deepti Vishwanath

Traditional Habits

Few habits I want to carry forward…

Covid19 has put mankind in its place, even if it is temporary. The fast paced, selfish attitude has been held by the hook! We are cornered, the worst in a long time.

Few habits I am planning to carry forward once we go pass this.

1. I am going to worship the sunrise and sun set again. This brought discipline in my life. Made me be grateful for the time here. Made me recognise, any sunset could be the last I see! Made me recognise without this first fundamental ‘being’ life here would not even exist! Forget me being here!!

2. I will leave my footwear outside the house and have a different one only for inside, however difficult it may be for me to keep changing them every time! (And it is difficult most of you would know!) It makes me recognise I have people living with me, while I may be more healthy, they may not be to fight the germs I bring in.

3. I will, without fail wash my hands every time I come from outside, having touched many places and objects unknowingly. I have fully understood its importance now.

4. Keep mum during defecation! Germs do enter through that opening as well!

5. I will recognise acutely other nature born beings as existent also. Like the animals, plants etc. I will consciously further minimise my consume which harms them, especially violently.

6. Above all! I will deliberately keep some proportion of social distancing. Social distancing has added some days extra to do more things which are directly meaningful to me. Before I see the last sunset!

Truly, these habits are not new which I have formed recently! These few habits from the past I plan to reinstate in my lifestyle which my older generations swore by! Breaking which we were reprimanded strongly. And which I have witnessed the transition of loosing and replacing them with more conceited, careless aka modern approach and thinking has brought in.

I am going to reinstate those traditions, call hereby habits, which were by far more scientific than science will perhaps fully fathom!

Oh! Yes!! I don’t need to reinstate namaste! I still fortunately have that habit!

I have missed any which I need to consider again? Let me know.

#sayingyestotradition. 🙏🏼

– Deepti Vishwanath

मैं से रिश्ता।

रिश्तों को बनते भी देखा, बिछड़ते भी देखा

ऊँचाई तक पहुँचते भी देखा, गिरते भी देखा

ओ रे नादान मन! पकड़ने क्यों चला तू

एक बात तो समझ अब ! समझ अब!!

अब बस! रिश्तों को बदलते देख अब!

एक ही रिश्ता तो है, उसे तो तू छोड़ चला!

अब खुद से ही रिश्ता जोड़ के तू चल!

है तुझ में ही वह,

जो जान है सबकी!

रिश्ता तो बस उसी से बना के रख अब।

नाम अनेक है उसके,

कहीं ईश्वर कह कर बुला लिया,

कभी अल्लाह, तो मसीहा कहा कभी।

जुड़ा उससे, तो ओ रे मन!

रिश्ता फिर कोई रहा कब!

चल बस, अब नादानी छोड़!

जो बदले, वह रिश्तों से मोड़ खुद को अब।

बना वह रिश्ता अब दृढ़,

जुड़कर जिससे सिर्फ़, अब सब रिश्ते रहे।

– दीप्ति विश्वनाथ

Significance of Holi

Hiranyakashipu is said to be an asura demon, who is fond of wealth. Hiranya means gold. Kashipu means food and clothing. He is clothed in gold and riches.

Hiranyakashipu symbolises the asuri tendencies rising where there is fondness for wealth in the form of gold, exotic food and extravagant clothing. The notion of supremacy, controllership and ‘invincibility’ that arises with the power that wealth brings.

Prahlad is the son of Hiranyakashipu symbolising devotion to the highest power, here Vishnu. When prosperity grows, devotion to God in any name and manner is the only way to keep this tendency in check in the initial stages. But if the tendency is not reigned through devotion then it ultimately brings a fierce end to prosperity, the person and family.

Hiranyakashipu’s sister is Holika, an asurani, female demon. She represents attachment born out of aviveka (non discernment) in the environment of ‘Gold’. Gold means aggrandisement of wealth. Wealth is empowering by nature. The empowering capacity is equated to ‘Shakti’ which is the ‘female’ aspect of creation. When this Shakti is misplaced it is finally the cause of doom. Holika dahan is celebrated a day before Holi, to symbolise that final victory is imminent if aviveka is destroyed in the fire of viveka which is lit by knowledge.

Holi, a festival for the followers of Sanatana Dharma, is a celebration of victory of Devotion over the lure and the power of the ephemeral. The victory of daivi divine force over asuri demonic forces within and outside. In whose heart Bhagavāna / God resides, for them the true master of creation comes at calling. And all the vibrant colours of life play sportively with merriment.

Happy Holi everyone 🙏🏼

©️ Deepti Vishwanath

मैं को मैं से ।

इन्द्रियों से जुड़कर जगत देखा।

इन्द्रियों को छोड़ा तो स्वप्न देखा।

प्रार्थना की तो ईश्वर देखा।

जिससे देखा, उसे देखूँ कैसे?

जिसने देखा, उसे देखूँ कैसे?

बस जानने निकली थी मैं,

कि जान लिया,

इस मैं ने ही तो

द्रष्टा रोका!

अब देख रही हूँ,

कि इस मैं को मैं से

छोड़ूँ कैसे!

– दीप्ति विश्वनाथ।

Fog

Standing here I see

Fog

Obscuring all ‘in sight’

The veil so thick

Hides all that is.

Happens so often also

In my foggy mind

I fail to see

What should be clear

But then I realise

The obscured is always external

Clear it is what is so close.

An ‘I’ Which is never obscured!

Why is it difficult to define a Hindu and Hinduism?

Man’s attempts to figure out his existence has been ceaseless since time immemorial. This has resulted in the formation and dissolution of various ideologies and religions around the globe. These ideologies and religions have also majorly determined the systems of societal habits and shaped pursuits which can accommodate the struggle for survival. Many devastating wars have been fought and conquests claimed to establish dominance by usurping the existing systems. Sometimes in the name of religion and sometimes in the name of advancement; the common force has been to dominate. And the need to dominate, psychology suggests, springs from insecurity. Insecurity has direct relevance to existence. It implies a fear of losing one’s existence.

The oldest known literary compilation in the world is The Veda. Wherever Veda got transmitted, there it influenced human thinking so deeply that it shaped the identity, culture and ways of living for those people. The knowledge therein remained irrefutable even to the wisest. And it’s content ever attractive, since it spoke on life. This made it popular in society as it spread through word of mouth. But, as humans, people also want quick, easy solutions and applications. They do not have time, leisure or inclinations to engage in growing the understanding first, which should propel the life direction. They are left with the choice to accept what is told and fall risk to becoming rigid, and prey to blind faith. Or another choice remains, is to just reject it, and keep searching for different ways and methods, untried before, fuelling newer ideologies with an attempt to restructure society.

A society which had embraced the Veda’s way of life, over time, shows all the three firmly established. Currently seen as well there are people who have the availability of the correct knowledge and understanding of the Veda with which they lead their life.  Then there are people who have blind faith on prevailing systems with which they lead their lives. And then there are the new systems emerging every now and then with a defying vision to direct lives. There are people who understand what their roots uphold, and they are happy to abide in it. There are people who have no understanding what their customs and rituals or festivals truly meant but they blindly follow it, and there are people who are rebellious about it and try to restructure their life with a recent or experimental ideology. It is this amalgamation which makes it difficult to define Hindu and Hinduism.  For all of them come under the vast canopy of The Veda.

Geography was not concretely laid out when The Veda ruled the thought. As time advanced, and man globally continued to find meaning to his existence, intermingling with other regions became accessible. The ‘force of domination’ on geography became essential. For once you travelled to another land, your survival and insecurities had to play up and find their ground! Geographies tried to become distinct and people started to group to preserve their ideologies which sustained their predecessors.

Bhārata was the name of the area where the Veda ruled the life. And in the knowledge of the Veda, is the knowledge of one’s existence. Thus, these sets of people had a very low sense of insecurity, almost none. And hence they did not feel any need to dominate. To the extent that they did not even feel the need to travel to another land except to trade! Worse still, so lacking the sense of insecurity was, that even the need to defend when attacked was sparse! But, Bhārata was advanced due to the liberal way in which Vedās had educated man. This became a focus of many invasions. Every invasion brought with it new diverse ideological thoughts, customs, habits to be integrated in the mainstream. The fallout was that the method which educated the correct understanding of The Veda got intercepted by diverting energies to giving explanations to the non conformers. This added layers of contextual reasoning and integrated it to the main body of knowledge. Making it more and more difficult for the blind believer to get educated. The distance between the three sections, knowledge based, faith based and defiance based kept growing. And in the present, the latest invasion of Britishers almost broke the link of transmission of correct understanding of the Veda! Making it very difficult to define or even explain who is a Hindu and what is Hinduism especially to the one who have been integrated to this land by their ancestors but were not rooted here in the times when knowledge prevailed life!

Our ancestors in the form of great visionaries struggled hard to uphold and teach the correct understanding of The Veda. Only because it is that system of thinking, following which one knows the Truth of one’s existence, which alone ends all insecurities and miseries. There is death of the urge for violence and birth of compassion. This is Hinduism and the knower of it, A Hindu!

Wishing everyone a Happy Sankranti! Invoking the grace of Surya Devata to shine once again upon Bharata! Only this time, the lands have merged! Sarvebhya sukhino bhavantu! May wisdom prevail in all the beings! OM.

© Deepti Vishwanath. 🙏

15.1.2020

Pic courtesy – google.com

Life and me

I wake up in the morning,

Wondering what do I want from life!

I go to sleep,

Wondering,

What does life want from me?

The circular existence cannot be

The soul of life!

The trenches of pain,

Or the floating high happiness!

The comfort of company,

Or the irreconcilable separation!

The frantic search

For fulfilment,

Or the subtle joy of the moment!

Varied and variegated outlooks,

Broken, struggling to mend.

To whom does all this serve?

Or to whom does it belong?

All I have understood so far,

My vision is incomplete, fragmented

In which, is how

O life, you show yourself!

I go to sleep, wondering

Will I get an answer,

When I am awake?

Or will the answer

Awaken me from an eternal sleep!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

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Hooked on the wall.

Like an old painting

Covered with dust

I stand. Hooked on the walls of

False beliefs, misunderstandings, superstitions;

Years overs years, dust drapes me

Fading my beauty, once joyed by all.

And I,

Trying my best to unhook myself,

Shake the dust off.

Am unable to do so….

Helpless on the walls, I am hooked.

Dust shadows me;

an outline only visible

Marking my existence!

©Deepti Vishwanath.

An old poem. Written on 12th June, 1986, resurfaced in an attic box. What surprises me, Existence was my query even then. Still at it! 🙂

She is a will!

‘Tis the simple joys

That warmed her heart

For no reason

A wave

Of air or water or hand

Are caresses she cared.

She jewelled with the smiles,

From all the known, unknown.

She wore an eternal spring on her.

Her shoes of fluid clear waters

Making her gait swift, definite,

Also delicate.

Bright, effervescent, yet sensitive

The rose of her demeanour.

Untouched by the swift moods

When in clouds,

She rarely became pale

her inner sight transparent.

They say, she is a dream!

I say, she is a will!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Mind

Bounces like a ping pong;

Needs to be pushed up,

And more low than high.

Swings like a pendulum,

From a past left to a future right

Oscillating relentlessly

Soaks like a sponge,

All that it is sens-ational,

Imagining more than real.

Clings like a creeper,

To the tree of the known.

Hooked to hope of a sweet fruit.

Fickle, impulsive, insecure, attached.

What do I say,

About you, O Mind!

You tie a ‘me’ within you!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Pic – courtesy web space.

Fly Past

Birds I see in the sky,

a rainy afternoon.

Wet and chirpy,

flying freely by.

Circling, but high above!

Looking down

ever now and then.

With a glee in their manner,

Telling me to join them.

To Abandon the secure – dry, lands.

And warn me,

“No, No. don’t take a plunge!”

Instead “fly high!” They say,

Towards the limitless sky.

And view behind also

Like them,

Ever now and then;

To lure another one.

To escape the ‘grounds’

For the skies!

Join the birds.

Flying high and past

Leaving the ephemeral Grounds.

For the Real skies.

©️Deepti Vishwanath. January 2019.

Gamble

Aha! So. Many roads you see?

From this point onwards,

And each with many lanes

and by-lanes,

Not knowing which goes where,

What turn to take.

No sign boards ahead or

From above.

How do you know

Where to go?

Midway the highway

Stop you cannot.

Not rest by the side.

For how long after all!

Oh! The push and speed from behind.

The honk and the crank.

The noise from all!

They know where they go?

Follow who then I?

Is life then, only a gamble?

Mind. Such are your lanes.

©️Deepti Vishwanath

वापिस – Return

Describing in minimum words, the rarity of the culmination of a spiritual pursuit. Home referring to one’s starting point. Destination is reaching Home again. Pointing to the search of happiness which begins with a journey of searching outward of oneself and culminating it in discovery within one’s self as one’s very nature .

क्या है यह इत्तिफ़ाक़

कि मन्ज़िल आ पहुँचे

वरना घर से तो सब निकले थे !

A difficult translation this is!

What chance is this

That destination is reached

Else,

Everyone left a home!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Some Why’s?

Body lit on pyre

What truth it tells?

The end is certain

And known.

Why then? Does living seem eternal?

That to accommodate, to forgive, to forget

To laugh, to hug, to be light

Seems so difficult!

Why does human not remember that end is certain,

and

Why does he not live with this memory?

Why does human pride his ignorance?

Why does human divide as me-mine, you-yours?

Why can compassion not be cultivated as a universal value?

Why can kindness not be compulsory?

Why can injury caused to lesser expressions of life be allowed?

Why are values not a priority universally,

Irrespective of nationality colour creed gender!

Why are there so many religions?

When prayers are same! For happiness.

Some of the why’s my teacher said never to ask!

©️ Deepti Vishwanath

Empty slate

An empty slate,

To write each one

Their own fate.

Crayons of hands and feet,

Scribbling as they please.

Figuring out the sheet;

Maximise they squeeze.

To evoke that probable;

To avoid the disdain.

To try every possible,

To achieve the gain.

Empty slate the universe gave.

Gave the tools, to efforts save.

To feel, to plan, to change, to create.

Nature grant one to sate.

But, hid it subtle,

To allow us play.

Now each is trying;

To write something,

That unveils the pleasures.

To discover the treasures.

Success is the only measure;

Before the final D- day!

Alas! Then.

Empty thou comes and thy returns!

©️Deepti Vishwanath. 2019

Time and Mind

Time only moves forward

Why then dear mind

Do You go backwards

Getting stuck in by lanes gone

Getting off, ever so often

To visit events forlorn

To reminisce, what charm you find

In plodding dead troughs behind

Hacking your way over and over

To dig chambers which are now blur

Time only moves forward

Liberating every done undone

Unfolding a new in every Sun

Why then O Mind!

Do you move backwards?

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Homecoming

Let me find a home

With no bricks and walls

Not even faces or calls

There find no gnome.

To pick the light

Reflecting inward halls

Let me sit there

Which fills it here.

Leaving the city gates

Be where fullness awaits.

Let me find that home!

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Write a soft experience

What life experience is there,

But a write on sand where

Which nature will not help erase?

Is joy and grief really that afar?

they seem inseparably not apart?

Why then? Let nature do its part.

Write soft, gentle, free.

It forever will flee!

©Deepti Vishwanath

Life

Life, as I mystify on your existence
You rule over me.
Chain me, anchor me.
Deep down in the soil under the water.
As much I want to float – like a lotus.
You encage me in a body,
as much I want to set free and fly past.
©️Deepti Vishwanath.
A poem scribbled on 10.5.1985.

From the balcony

Overlooking. From the balcony.

One sees

The hustle, the bustle,

The juggle, the struggles,

For a meaningful existence!

And I sit there,

Wondering!

If this is all it was!

Unsatisfied

By the gains and loss.

The whole vast universe

Is this it – all?

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Empty thyself.

How much has been collected?

And the end so near!

To empty it all,

Is there time enough!?

At the thin brink

Between life and Death;

I will be checked,

For what all did I bring back.

All that is collected so far,

Belongs to heather world!

Surely, it is going to be rejected;

While I enter through the thin door.

On this side

it all seems mandatory.

On returning home,

It is all but nugatory!

Wait!

Let me carry what I can carry home.

For all I see

Only myself is allowed to be.

But alas!

the frivolities are too heavy a baggage!

Accumulating I did not see!

Empty where now will it be?

©️Deepti Vishwanath

Between no more.

Between life and death

Time is ours

No more no less.

To discover,

The undiscovered yet.

What objects and enjoyments are worth!

Now No more.

The Me is yet to be known!

 

Between two breaths,

Time is ours.

No more no less.

To turn over the chance,

To wilful choice.

Choosing the Ephemeral

Now no more!

 

Between sleep and sleep

The waking is ours.

No more no less.

To claim the eternal freedom.

A ‘Between’, when

NOW no more.

 

©️Deepti Vishwanath.

Memories

As in twilight

Images blurred.

Recognised but faintly

Outlines merged.

Colours monochrome.

No smell or taste or touch.

What is this?

Memories!

Evoking feelings

Ranging wide and wild

Bringing smiles and tears.

In a dazed present.

Are they real?

O! The inner eye,

Look closely!!

Do you see an image only?

A rainbow life

Desiring a rainbow life,

With sunshine their companion

Dispelling clouds of doubts,

Darkness of ignorance, insecurity

Removing one from obscurity.

What one seeks is a rainbow life!

Temporary though it may seem

Vivid it ought to beam

With birds carrying the imaginations high

On to the clear skies

A rainbow life

Is all we seek..

We all seek

But,

And,

that is all we seek.

A rainbow life,

Is it not an illusion?

Is it not a delusion?

– Deepti Vishwanath

Photo credits – web

Spectator

For one day at a time

In time

A day passed another

Like soldiers marching ahead

I stand as a spectator

Hearing the drums

The monotony, yet firm

The uniformity

Taking the orders

Restricting them…

Obedient.. Choiceless… Voiceless

Do I see hopeless as well?

Time… The great humbler

If one is marching along

As a spectator,

Free.

– Deepti Vishwanath

Removing the colors

I started to remove the colours
from my vision,

And all the colours flooded in!

I then, held on to a colour,

The colour darkened so much,

It was no more The colour.

Also, all other colours disappeared!

I learnt a lesson.

Delight is not exclusive.

 

I saw birds flying

Freely in the skies

Chirping, quirking,

I held one!

It lost its joyful garbling voice,

Spoke only when prompted

And as trained,

I learnt a lesson!

Delight cannot be held.

 

I saw the waters,

Clear, gurgling, dancing, when they hit the rocks,

Hitting their highs sportively

I held some in a jar,

To carry with me its pristine clarity and quality.

It went quiet.

I learnt a lesson!

Delight cannot be bound.

 

I went to the mountains,

Trying to be one with them,

Danced around them,

Spread my arms to embrace them..

Oh! How majestic and strong!

Talked loud to them,

They echoed myself back

I learnt a lesson!

Delight is everywhere. Anywhere. Whenever I call it!

 

Sitting in my room, saw two flies

Playing with each other,

Oh! The joy!

And I said,

Why am I delighted?

It is they, who are playing!

And I learnt the most important lesson.

Delight is in Me! is Me!

It cannot be held!

It is not exclusive!

It cannot be bound!

It is everywhere, anywhere because of Me!

It is indeed, Me alone! 

 

 

© Deepti Vishwanath, Photo – Vishwanath Tekur

When a leaf fell

A yellow leaf on a branch

Saw the few yet green

Somehow did not see

The many that were yellow.

Knowing intuitively

and fearing,

It’s time has come –

For the Great Fall.

Wondered,

Am I ready for the call?

It looked only at the green leaves

envying their vibrancy

Why did I turn yellow at all?

The fall, is now inevitable,

It recognised.

The branch was thrusting it out.

The leaf so wanted to hold on,

But, alas!

The force was only from one side -the branch.

The yellow leaf pondered quickly,

Can I trust the air?

Will it take me to a place

Where I rest and be embraced

With warmth and no fear?

And it shuddered, when it wondered,

Should I surrender to the wind?

Or, Should I resist the wind?

A question it had no answer for.

Those already fallen could not reach the branch anymore,

and relate their tale of how it felt when they fell

And those on the tree, did not even suspect the fall.

And then,

It started falling…

And the yellow leaf suddenly realized,

The only resistance it could offer is the weight of its own self that it carried..

The wind was kind,

as the leaf dried up, weight gone..

It knew instantly..

it will survive, without the tree!

Merged with the soil, it will nourish the tree..

 

© Deepti Vishwanath.  Photo courtesy- Vishwanath Tekur

Samsāra – The vortex

I have a few days, to do nothing. So I decided to take a dip into my ocean of thoughts, and see if I emerge surfing or scathed!

I prefer to view life impersonally. For one simple reason, I see nothing happening to anyone which has not happened to someone else before, ever! Thus, personalising experiences, I have been a bit wary off. It certainly does not mean I do not recognise them. It just implies, I would rather see myself as one amongst the many out there having a similar experience. Just as my name is not my unique identity, so too, neither are my experiences. Yet, i too, as everyone else, would want to know what makes me unhappy? What do I truly want? What makes me insecure? Or have anxiety, of what? Why would I feel lonely? Or Depressed? And instead of wanting answers or a way out for myself, I choose a different route!

I want to know, yes but I want to know, Why do we as mankind experience more strife than joy, more hurts than cheer, more depressions, anxieties, fears, than more fun, happiness, peace, calm, love, caring, empathy. Are we individualised, or individually targeted to receive these? Or are these mere perceptions? Or are we somewhere missing out on something which can eliminate – the vortex?

These are two different ways. In the personal method, I quickly submerge myself, I drown faster. Feel lonely, helpless. Seeking and waiting mercy, since I feel individually targeted. I find reasons. Why am I going through the lows? What have I done to deserve it? Etc. This approach itself is the problem. Since it strengthens my vision of separation from the universe. The felt alienation is the source of a lot of human ills.

Whereas, when I see that firstly, I am not individually targeted to receive some unhappiness, on the contrary, there are always people who have gone through or are going through worse, I instantly prevent slipping into the vortex. Where is that one human who has never experienced unhappiness, dejection, fear, anxiety, loneliness etc. Would then the answer to freedom from these lie in an individual outlook?

These ‘real’ experiences which a human is susceptible to and experiences them as demons in and of his life, are all encompassed under one umbrella, called SAMSĀRA.    The term envelopes all the feelings which amount to saying, “My life sucks!” “I see no end to my struggles” etc. It is the vortex, which simply destroys the individual.

A factual understanding of human life as seen around, keeps one objective.

It is the very not knowing oneself, the human worth, the human potential, the ignorance of self worth and self potential begins the force, which ultimately becomes the vortex.

I dive into my ocean of thoughts and sail, if I remain objective. But, am instantly scathed, if I make my any expereince as exclusive to me!

May the dark force of samsāra be destroyed by the light of the One.

 

Deepti Vishwanath

Dissolve away

To be born like a wave in ocean, 

A momentary distinction

And all the joys and sorrows to hold on to then

How real is that?

All relations and achievements,

All gains, possessions and giving aways!
When, the wave will dissolve away

Back to being ocean

Would the limited experience be so valuable then?
I thought this,

And then,

My heart flooded 

With uninterrupted joys 

Of the manifold, 

Of vastness,

Of no fear of separation or loss.

Ah! The ride as the wave became precious

For, it made me recognise the water! 

Enquiring ‘Creation’

To the thinkers of Vedanta, it is too obviously, blatantly fallacious to conclude that creation ‘began’ with a big-bang or any other theory! There is no eruption seen without its underlying cause. When the seed sprouts from the soil, we don’t say, a sapling is created. We say a sapling has emerged. So too, the creation is not created, it emerges. Instead of wasting human enquiry on discovering ‘WHEN’ the creation started? It would perhaps be fruitful to enquire, where did it emerge! ‘WHERE’ has the creation emerged?

DV thinks first, this is a maddening enquiry! Where? How can creation emerge in another creation? Then that creation in another and so on. This is the loop of ‘ad infinitum’. No wonder, Man is recycling his invention within creation. He cannot get out of the ‘created’.

And then DV saw! Creation is an emergence. Creation Exists even as its ‘unseen’ state. But where, WHAT is that soil which holds the seed and the sprout? And more importantly, Which is, by itself not a creation and certainly not its product.

Ah Brahman! The ever existent! For some tangibility, is called by a name “AUM” 🕉

Significance of a religious life.

In Vedās, a religious life is prescribed for all those who have :

a. Absence of Ātma Brahman Aikya jñanam.
b. Who have rāga-dveśa.

Absence of knowledge that the real nature of oneself- Ātma, is in fact, Brahman – the vast. Popularly referred to as Self-knowledge. The Self here is Ātma as oneself, and not the notion that I am an individual. This absence is referred to as Self-ignorance or simply ignorance. Ignorance is not referring to absence of any objective knowledge, like that of Physics, Economics etc. But it is stating the ignorance regarding Self-knowledge.

In the absence of Self -knowledge, the obvious outcome is “I am an individual”. And in such a notion of individuality, obvious is the presence of rāga-dveśa, likes and dislikes.

Man is afflicted by his Self ignorance primarily. It is the root cause of “ALL” the sorrows. Sprouting from it, man then gets afflicted by the likes-dislikes. In essence, the Vedās point out that a human being, irrespective of his gender, race, colour etc. spends away his life being constantly disturbed. Sorrow is encompassing all the felt disturbances.

But, an human being, again irrespective of his gender, race, colour etc. also has the equipped faculties, to gain this Self-knowledge. In the presence of which the root of Self -ignorance gets uprooted, there is then no locus for the individuality, and thus, no likes and dislikes get formed. The person of Self-knowledge, Such a human is referred to as “liberated”. Having fulfilled his human birth potential.

To uproot Self-ignorance, a lot of internal preparation is required. Just as to sow a seed, the soil is tilled; so too, for Self-knowledge, the human mind needs tilling.

This tilling is the job of a religious life.

Does every religion then take one to Self-knowledge?

No. Though ALL religions, when followed, cultivate the soil.

Vedic vision held the performance of the Vedic Karmas as religious. This was the karma-kanda, portion of Vedās detailing the knowledge regarding Karmas to be performed as per your notions of individuality. Abiding in the performance of the prescribed Karmās was being religious.

What was the advantage of this vision? The uniqueness of the vision of the Vedas? To the extent a person abided in his ordained karma, to that an extent indirectly his internal preparation took place. The source of sorrow coming from likes-dislikes got managed. And as one got prepared, the Vedās effortlessly revealed Ātma-jñana, through the Vedānta part, also called the Upanishads. Knowing which the final source of sorrow was destroyed. The one with Self-knowledge, now is the One. Where there is no sorrow. For sorrow to be, there has to be duality. But, for the Ātma-jñani, where is the other?

Thus, Vedic Karmās relevance as a religious life. And as with any knowledge, the chances of it being understood is relative, so too with Vedic knowledge. And the non-understanding leading to misunderstanding gets compounded when the knowledge is regarding the very Subject, the person, who has to re-know himself. This leads to layers and layers of deep-rooted superstitions, fanaticism, blind beliefs, rigid adherences, which more often destroy the very purpose of knowledge. And moreover, destroy the very potential of a human existence.

I will

I will let the world go by, like waters in a river..

Why will I hold on to it?

what for ever flows ..

i will step side to see the flow

where does it all go,

to which ocean does this life merge?

if all this was only nothing

then

anyways, why will I hold to it?

i will let it go

yes. I will let it go,

to return back

to my wakefulness

when I let the world go,

i live,

eternally..

let it go.

To live.

 

 

 

 

 

Dance

Let us dance

with the movement of the winds

the songs of the rivers

the earth our theatre

the skies our audience

and all

the birds, caterpillars, butterflies

o come be my companion!

let us dance

feeling our breaths

for Life

certainly

is worthy of a great performance!

© Deepti Vishwanath

Pic courtesy-web

 

By the Ghats

By the ghat, standing I,

saw the river flow by.

Telling me tales of many a times

forlorn by us,

She remembers it all.

I turn to look at the people behind me,

busy, hustling, bustling…

in need to get somewhere,

go somewhere,

get something,

achieve something,

a rush!

Then, I took the plunge!

One last thing I did;

took the boat

to the other shore.

I stand here,

where I hear the tales from the river,

been eternally there,

of the same ceaseless hustles,

been eternally there,

I see on the other shore!

only, from the other end!

© Deepti Vishwanath

What is Sannyasa? (Renunciation)

What is Saṁnyāsa ?

Desire to give up is as natural as desire to procure. They are both necessary aspects in determining the path of life experiences. Both are healthy desires. Both can prove beneficial or detrimental to survival as well as to the quality of living. The desire to procure can become detrimental when it exceeds a limit. Among the many ills, few are, it makes a person greedy, arrogant and insecure. Whereas the desire to give up, when it exceeds limits can prove dangerous as giving up one’s responsibilities and sometimes, even one’s life. On the other end of extreme, the desire to give up can also pave the path of absolute freedom. Mokṣa. This, the desire to procure can never bring. Mokṣa.

Saṁnyāsa is the healthy desire to give up which paves the path of Mokṣa.

Saṁnyāsa, its essential meaning is त्याग Tyāga. And Tyāga, the essential meaning is ‘To give up’. ‘To abandon’. ‘To leave’. But while Saṁnyāsa involves giving up, mere giving up is not Saṁnyāsa.

What is it that needs to be given up? To know this, we first recognise what is it to procure? What propels the desire to procure?

All procuring is prompted by an inner sense of unfulfillment. An inner sense of security, wanting to be loved, cared for. A felt incompleteness which drives one to seek a projected fulfilment. Upaniṣads call them एषणा eṣaṇa. All our material assets upto, all our relationships, are driven by the same sense of incompleteness. Brihadāranyaka Upaniṣad divides all our fundamental desires into three eṣaṇas. वित्तैषणा Vittaiṣaṇa, पुत्रैषणा Putraiṣaṇa & लोकैषणा Lokaiṣaṇa. They are representing Desire for wealth, Desire for a Son and Desire for a Heavenly life respectively. One desires some material possessions since they are necessary to expand a family. And son is expected to further the family and also grow it further, so son is desired. He is also expected to release his father from his debts, which ensure a heavenly life for the father. In these three fundamental desires, all the complex desires get included, for their ends would fall into one of these three. These remain the fundamental propellers for all forms of procurement. And the Upaniṣads further bring these down to अहंकार – ममकार संबन्ध ahaṃkara – mamakara. Relationships born of the notion “My Body” “I am an individual” one begins to own objects and also exert an authority of ownership on people. This brings relations like, “My family” “My husband” “My children” My house” “My car” “My table” My pen” “My bat” “My doll” Etc. Etc. As long as these remain in limits of universal laws, or even, and also legal laws, they give some happiness and fulfilment, limited and short-lived as they are.

But, when any of these procurements begins to be strenuous, riddled with pain and suffering, man wants to abandon the same. By such a giving up, the physical effort is given up. Even the mental chase of that particular may be given up. But the inner sense of unfulfillment, cannot be given up. It remains nudging inside. Due to this, man resumes to procure something else with a fresh hope, may be now, he gets the fulfilment, which will result in peace, mental relaxation and innermost happiness that will last his lifetime! Such a giving up in the first place, is called Rajasic Tyāga.

Sometimes one just gives up something or someone, without truly having understood the value of the object or the person. It is out of haughtiness or sheer lack of wisdom, or information. Many a times man gives up, only to regret later, when the value gets known. Such a giving up is called Tamasic Tyāga.

Both Rajasic and Tamasic Tyāga are not qualifying for Saṁnyāsa.

In the ahaṃkara-mamakara relationships and their strenuous nature to sustain them, possibly, some see, the futility and falseness of the assumed association, “that the method of procurement of objects and people, gives fulfilment.” It dawns upon them that it is a chase of 99. A spiral leading nowhere. It is simply wrong to assume that outward possessions or relations born due to “me being a body” can ever, can in fact NEVER bring inner fulfilment. They want to now instantly give up this life leading to procurements. They give up. All actions. All relations. All procuring habits. Such a giving up, is Sātvika Tyāga. An essential requirement for Saṁnyāsa. But, it still does not remove the inner felt unfulfillment.

Saṁnyāsa is of two essential kinds.

1.Ceasing activities that promote self procuring. And directing them towards means which help in discovering inner fulfilment. For facilitating this, one may take to the Saṁnyāsa Āśrama. The characteristic of Saṁnyāsa Āśrama is taking on certain vows, along with and including which are; काषायवस्त्र dressing one’s body in ochre coloured clothes, दण्ड carrying a stick, कमण्डलुआदि, a vessel for receiving food Anna Prasadam and मुण्ड shaving off the hair on the head. Without possessing anything, they choose to dwell modestly. This shift of āśrama without inner completeness yet, and for the sake of pursuing, discovering the inner completeness is called Vividiṣa Saṁnyāsa. Many kinds of saṁnyāsi fall in this category. It may be safe to presume the majority are such saṁnyāsi. They may pursue inner completeness through service, devotion or even austerities. But, they put little or no emphasis on ātma jñana as the primary and sole means of inner completeness.

Inner incompleteness is not a truth. It is a false belief. Man is inherently complete. He has to just discover it. And as with any belief, this too gets corrected with knowledge only. In this case, with self knowledge, ātma jñana, regarding one’s completeness.

Few take to vividiṣa saṁnyāsa for pursuing ātma jñana solely. To them, everything else is only incidentally relevant. All service, devotion, austerities will never occupy their life completely. They will spend their life seeking a Brahma Jñani ācharya, who would only be interested in dispersing the ātma jñana for the sake of the seeker. They will do the śāstra adhyayanam (indepth study of śāstra), will reflect, question, exert to understand the Mahāvākya, TAT TVAM ASI. All this, for liberation only. For in their minds they have well observed the endlessness of all other pursuits and the struggles and limitations. They are ready to give up everything for discovering the inner completeness.

Among all such, the One who rises enough in his inner pursuits to discover the Truth which ends all struggles and he is able to claim AHAM BRAHMĀSMI. He gains the Brahmānandam. The absolute, unbroken happiness.
2. There is another route to claiming Brahmāndam. Without taking vividiṣa saṁnyāsa. He remains with his life activities that he generated so far and begins the Tyāga of ahaṃkara-mamakara along with pursuing ātma jñana. This is Mānasa saṁnyāsa. Once his pursuit for the same culminates in discovering the Brahmānandam, he may then choose to give up all his possessions and relations. He has culminated his life journey. He may choose then to remain the rest of his life in his atmajñana. For this sole reason he may take to saṁnyāsa āśrama. It is then called Vidvat Saṁnyāsa. Or he may not take Saṁnyāsa at all and continue living among his life activities as a liberated one!

The following are also possible

3. When one takes to Saṁnyāsa Āśrama born from Rajasic Tyāga, it is referred to as Marakat Saṁnyāsa. Marakat means monkey. Such a person will keep wavering on his decision to have taken Saṁnyāsa.

4. There is a provision of an exception. Under a specific condition as an debilitating or a fatal disease, some wish to take Saṁnyāsa. It is taken almost at the dying moments. Such a Saṁnyāsa is called Ātura Saṁnyāsa.

For Mokṣa, ātma jñana is mandatory, and for ātma jñana, saṁnyāsa is essential. Whether vividiṣa or mānasa. But giving up the ahaṃkara-mamakara is what determines one is a saṁnyāsi or not.

In the world, many take to vividiṣa saṁnyāsa for the sake of filling their bellies and desires. A seeker should know, learn to differentiate and recognise the real from the fake!

In the Bhaja Govindam, verses attributed to Ādi Śaṅkarācharya, his student Padmapāda points out the foolishness of those who fake saṁnyāsa.

जटिलो मुण्डी लुञ्छितकेशः
काषायाम्बरबहुकृतवेषः ।
पश्यन्नपि च न पश्यति मूढो
ह्युदरनिमित्तं बहुकृतवेषः ॥ १४॥

There are many who go with matted locks, many who have clean
shaven heads, many whose hairs have been plucked out; some are
clothed in orange, yet others in various colours — all just for
a livelihood. Seeing truth revealed before them, still the foolish
ones see it not.

Whereas in the Bhagavad Gītā, Kṛṣṇa tells Arjuna in the

अनाश्रित: कर्मफलं कार्यं कर्म करोति य: ।
स सन्न्यासी च योगी च न निरग्निर्न चाक्रिय: ॥६.१॥

Anāśritaḥ karmaphalaṃ karyaṃ karma karoti yaḥ
Sa sannyāsī cha yogi cha na niragnirna chākriyaḥ |6.1|

श्रीभगवान् बोले-

जो पुरुष कर्म फल का आश्रय न लेकर, करने योग्य कर्म करता है,
वह सन्न्यासी तथा योगी है;
न केवल अग्नि का त्याग करने वाला और न क्रियाओं का त्याग करने वाला ।।1।।

Śri Bhagavān says –
The one who does what ought to be done, without depending on the results
Such a One is called a saṁnyāsī and He alone is the Yogī
Not the one who merely gives up physical worship, nor the one who gives up actions.

Arjuna wanted to take to Rajasic Tyāga, and Marakata saṁnyāsa, when he saw his close ones standing across him in war, ready to fight him. Overwhelmed, Arjuna collapsed in anxiety at the thought of loosing them all. And suddenly he began to talk all philosophical. “What is the use of war?” “Why should we be greedy?” “Better is a life of Bhikśa (another discipline of saṁnyāsa, where they request to be fed from the householders) than to kill one’s own for the sake of a piece of land?” Etc. Etc. He came up with many such seeming intelligent arguments. But Kṛṣṇa knew him well and also his inner maturity. He was not ready for giving up the ahaṃkara-mamakara. On the contrary he was suffering the attachments born of them. Thus, Kṛṣṇa gives Arjuna the above advice. That it was better for him to act as ought to be done and first begin by giving up his attachments to the outcomes of his actions. That itself will qualify him gradually into a full fledged saṁnyāsi, ready then for Mokṣa. This was the advice to begin Mānasa saṁnyāsa. He tells Arjuna to be a saṁnyāsī, to be a yogī. And by telling Arjuna, Kṛṣṇa is telling us all. To stop leading a deluded life and live a more deliberate and conscious life which raises one’s own being.

© Deepti Vishwanath
24.2.17
Mahā Shivarātrī

Praying for the ‘third eye’ to open. Wishing everyone a blessed  Mahā Shivarātrī. 🕉