Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Goal of Human Life!

It is a fact that every individual performs actions with a specific aim. No one can remain inactive even for a moment and no action is performed without a purpose.
The Darśhan Śhāstra declares-
prayojanamanuddiśhya mando̓pi na pravartate
However, we can say that every individual performs various actions every moment with a single purpose. It may appear strange but it is true. Some do good deeds and some perform bad ones. In reality, everyone performs actions that give them happiness.
Like an evil person finds happiness in harming others, a Saint performs actions for the welfare of others which give Him happiness. The motive behind achieving wealth, health, wife, son, fame, beauty is one - HAPPINESS. This proves that without any teaching or training every individual wants happiness and nobody wants sorrow, grief or pain because­
ānando brahmeti vyajānāt (ved)
Happiness, Bliss, peace are other names or synonyms for God.  Now arises a question. What is the relationship between our desire for happiness and God being Bliss personified?  Yes, there is a relation.
īśhvar  añśh jīv avināśhī (rāmāyaṇ)
The relation is that every individual soul is an eternal part of God, and God is Bliss Personified. Therefore being an eternal part of Him, every individual soul naturally seeks happiness.  No soul can ever wish for sorrow.
Since infinite lifetimes, all of us are searching happiness in this material world but according to our scriptures (Vedas) and our personal experiences, there is no doubt that worldly happiness is short lived. It is finite and illusive. When we eat a rasgulla (an Indian sweet) for the first time, we experience great pleasure. But if someone asks us to keep eating the same sweet, we feel like vomiting. So if there is pleasure in rasgulla or any such object, then we should experience this pleasure for ever. But this is not the case. Why don't we derive constant happiness from that object? In the same manner, the pleasure from wealth, spouse, children, food etc. keeps on fluctuating and finally comes to an end.
So why haven't we attained true happiness till now? Because we have not understood, realized and decided the true nature of happiness. Where is that kind of happiness? How can we attain it? Surprisingly, despite our continuous efforts to achieve happiness, we have not understood what and where we will get this happiness. Happiness is that which is unlimited, ever increasing and ever lasting. Sorrow cannot overccome it, like darkness cannot overcome light.  So where is this kind of happiness? The answer to this question can be categorized into two areas (which are intensely debated) - materialism and spirituality. According to materialism, there is no entity or authority called God and one will get happiness through material objects. Whereas, according to spirituality, only God is Bliss and by attaining God we can be happy for eternity. There is no other way to the attainment of happiness and removal of pain and suffering.
raso vai saḥ
The Vedas declares that even the most intellectual cannot comprehend God because He is beyond our material senses and by the grace of God even a fool can know God. Thus, every individual seeks happiness and since God is Bliss, everyone is a seeker of God. Every person will work continuously till he attains true happiness and peace.
The materialists deny the existence of God, but they can only claim that there is no entity called God if according to the scriptures, we do not attain God even after surrendering to a Guru and performing devotion.
The conclusion is that we must believe in the existence of God. But a question arises: what is our purpose of worshiping Him? Yes, there is a purpose. We are all selfish in nature, and whoever satisfies our self-interests, we get attached to that person. We all long for unlimited, everlasting happiness and that happiness is only in God. All our self interests will be fulfilled by worshiping God, and without understanding Him we cannot attain true happiness Therefore, having a human body, if we do not understand God, that will be our greatest mistake. We would have to suffer in the cycle of 8.4 millions species of life, because only in the human form, we can attain God and acquire the knowledge of God, to attain our ultimate goal of Divine Bliss.

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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Who is Radharani?

Radhopanishad is saying that the personality whom Shri Krishna worships, is known as Radha.  And the personality whom Radha worships, is known as Krishna.  Both worship one another.  The Vedas are saying that one personality has assumed two forms. Again, Radhopanishad states, "Radha and Krishna have one intellect, one mind, one soul, and even one face.  They have one knowledge.  This is why there is no difference between these two.  If someone thinks there to be a difference, it is an offence." It is a different matter altogether that someone says it from the point of view of nectar-but to actually think that Radha is greater, or Krishna is greater, leads one to a hell named Kalasutra for as long as the sun and the moon are in existence, in other words, till the dissolution of the universe.  Considering Radha and Krishna to be different is such a serious offence. So, both are the same.
Narad Pancharatram states that She is the Supreme Personality, beyond whom there is no other. Vrishbhanu’s daughter, Radha, is the primordial nature, from whom everything came into being.   ‘Ra’ and ‘Dha’ mean, “one who creates, one who preserves, and one in whom creation merges.
Narad Pancharatram again states that  Shri Krishna’s half part is Radha, and Radha’s half part is Krishna.  Shri Krishna says, “I have assumed the form of Radha.”  Radha Ji says, “I have assumed the form of Krishna.”  Radha is saying, “The form of Krishna is none other than Myself.”  “When I assumed the male form, people started calling me Shri Krishna.”
So,  again, Narad Pancharatra says that Just as milk and milk’s whiteness are the same, likewise Radha and Krishna are the same.  The whiteness of milk cannot and should not be separated from milk itself.  In the same way, no one can separate milk from the whiteness.  Both are the same.  
Again, Narad Pancharatra says that Mahalakshmi, the consort of Mahavishnu, the creator of countless universes, was manifested  from Radha’s left side.  Durga, Jayanti, Kali, Bhadrakali, Kapalini, Durga, Kshama, Shivadhatri, Svaha, Tvadha, and Vaishnavi are all born from fractions of Kishori Ji.  
Countless Vishnus are born from the toenails of Kishori Ji, not just one. 
Ved-Vyas Ji explained the meaning of the name ‘Radha.’  The one who fulfills desires of an individual who sheds a few tears, is known as Radha.  This is in the Brahma Vaivarta Puran. Devi Bhagavat Puran says, "First utter the name of Radha; then Krishna.  One who does keertan in this manner, attains Golok."  Radha’s name is uttered first.  No one says KRISHNA RADHA.  Everyone says RADHA KRISHNA or SHYAMA SHYAM. So, the word Radha is described in many places.  Rasik saints have spoken so much on Radha that there is no end to what they have said.  In our Braj there came great Jagadgurus, great Acharyas, like Vallabhacharaya and Nimbarkacharya, Gaurang Mahaprabhu, Ramanujacharya, Madhavacharya.  Madhvacharya and Raanujacharya, these two Jagadgurus, were devotees of Lakshmi-Narayan.  The remaining saints and acharyas of Braj were all devoted to Radha-Krishna.  Madhvacharya was devotee of Lakshmi-Narayan.  His disciple Madhavendra Puri was devotee of Radha-Krishna.  His disciple Ishvar Puri was a devotee of Radha-Krishna, and his disciple Gaurang Mahaprabhu was also a devotee of Radha-Krishna.  
So, only Vallabhacharya says only one thing, and that is that Radha is not equal to God, and that She is God Herself.  She is Brahm Herself.  And Nimbarkacharya says that Radha is the power, and Krishna is the powerful one.  According to him, power and the powerful one are non-different but also different from one another.  This is why both are one and also two.  Gaurang Mahaprabhu says that Radha and Krishna are eternally two, and eternally one and the same.  This is to say that all Acharyas are accepting Radha and Krishna to be one and the same.  Even Ramanujacharya and Madhvacharya, who are devotees of Lakshmi-Narayan, also write in their respective philosophies that Mahalakshmi is worshipped as Radha also.  
So, this is why we must not think Radha and Krishna to be two separate entities, but from the point of view, Radha is more important.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Who is Shree Krishna? What is the nature of His birth? Why should we be concerned with His Birth?

Who is Shree Krishna? What is the nature of His birth? Why should we be concerned with His Birth? To get the answers, we shall approach the Vedas for they are the greatest authority.
भूतं भव्यं भविष्यं सर्वं वेदात्प्रसिद्ध्यित
To find out anything about the past, present or the future, we must go into the Vedas. Why? Although there are numerous scriptures in Hinduism, yet
अनादिनिधना नित्या वागुत्सृष्टा स्वयम्भुवा
The Vedas are eternal. They were not written by anyone. They are not someone’s brainchild. Not even God’s. The Vedas are without a beginning, just as God is. Since when have the Vedas existed? As long as God has. And since when has God existed? As long as the Vedas have.
वेदो नारायणः साक्षात्
You can call the Vedas Vedas, or you can call them God, Narayan. Just as God is beyond the reach of a material mind and intellect, so are these Vedas. The Vedas say –
नावेदविन्मनुते तं बृहन्तम्
He who does not know the Vedas, does not know God.
आचार्ववान् पुरुषो हि वेद
We can know the meaning of the Vedas if we let someone who knows the Vedas, guide us. It is only through the guidance of a Divine Teacher, a Guru, that we can comprehend the meaning of the Vedas.
Some naïve people say that Shree Krishna was in the human form, and that which has form cannot be eternal. There is a part of the Vedas called Upanishad. The Upanishads contain the real essence of the Vedas. Even western philosophers have lavished praise on these Upanishads. Schopenhauer studied the French translation of the Upanishads for many years. He acknowledged, “In the whole world there is no study so elevating as that of the Upanishads. It has been the solace of my life. It will be the solace of my death.” Max Mueller said, “If these words of Schopenhauer required any confirmation, I would willingly give it as a result of my life-long study. And I also say that the Upanishads cannot have been written by a human.” The illustrious German philosopher Paul Deussen writes in his book titled ‘Philosophy of Upanishads,’ “There never was a scripture that could equal the Upanishads, nor is, nor will ever be in the future.” The French philosopher Victor writes, “The Upanishads are unequalled. They cannot be compared to any other scripture.” The great German philosopher Frederick says, “The Upanishads are like the sun, and all the other philosophies of the world are like the rays.” It is these Upanishads that will tell us about Shree Krishna.
There are many mantras in the Upanishads that say that God does not take birth. Yajurved, for example.
अजायमानो बहुधा विजायते तस्य योिनं परिपश्यन्ति धीराः ।

He is aja, He does not take birth.  But He takes innumerable births.  Such mutual contradiction.  He does not take birth, but He takes innumerable births.  We find such mutual contradictions sometimes even in the world.  The hair on our head is devoid of consciousness.  Our nails are also not conscious.  And yet, hair and nails emanate from a conscious body.  Stick a needle in any part of your body, and it will hurt.  And yet you do not feel the slightest pain as you get a haircut or as you cut your nails.  You will not even notice it if someone were to cut off your hair as you sleep.  So you see, the mixture of that which is conscious and the non-conscious.  On the rose bush, you have the beautiful flower and the prickly thorns.  We see some mutual contradiction even in the world.  It is natural, therefore, to find these mutual contradictions in God.