Love is a feeling of strong and positive emotional and mental states. Love is commonly contrasted with hate (or neutral, apathy). Love-hate is for creation, maintenance and destruction of this world. Love also has a profound effect on our mental and physical state. A ‘broken heart' or a failed relationship can have disastrous effects; bereavement disrupts human physiology and might even precipitate death. Love can be impersonal (for object, principle, goal etc.) and interpersonal (between human beings).
Among living organisms, the natural love and attraction is the root of reproduction, growth and multiplication. In unicellular organisms, reproduction is asexual wherein the two strands of DNA repel and duplicates; wherein Hate-Love relationship is involved. In multicellular organisms, mostly sexual reproduction takes place due strong attraction between male and female. So, love creates and is responsible for organic growth and multiplications. Dopamine, oxytocin and Serotonin are neurochemicals which help in making love.
Love-Hate also exists in non-living and inorganic matter. The matter is made of minute particles – molecules, atoms, electron, proton, neutron and so on at micro level and Galaxies, stars, planets, moon etc. at macro level. Scientifically, the very basis of their existence and continuously held together are electro-magnetic attraction among these microscopic particles and gravitational force or attraction among galaxies and planetary systems.
Learn to love. Love one. Love all. Love your enemy as much as you could love your friend. Love the mute animals as if they are human. No barriers of family tie, no caste or communal considerations, no territorial boundary should obstruct the even flow of your universal love. No despising of the sinner, no consciousness of superiority towards those who are less advanced, no hatred of the vicious. Love all and lovingly lead them on.
Forms of Love:
Love has different forms, gradations of intensity and facets. Love may be for food, for relationships, for wealth, for particular profession, for wine & narcotics, for opposite sex, for plants & animals, for humanity, for almighty and so on. Magnetic attraction or love may manifest mildly to very intensely. Sometimes, one becomes very possessive for a particular person or thing. Love may germinate due selfish motive or selflessness, though very-very rarely. When selfish love turns into universal love then one sees divinity in all.
In Greek language, nine forms of love have classified - Eros (passionate love), Pragma (enduring love), Ludus (playful love), Agape (universal love), Philia (deep friendship), Philautia (self-love), Storge (familial love) and Mania (obsessive love).
In Hinduism, divine love or Bhakti is deeply probed and is one of the four means of salvation or liberation from the cycle of re-births. Various forms of love are explained based on selfish motives and selfless pure love.
1. Sattvika Love - It is done to attain the almighty. It originates from intellect or Buddhi. When the person doing sattvika love desires Moksha, it is Sagun bhakti. When he loses all the desires of fruit, it becomes Nirgun or Nishkam love. It is pure love for the almighty.
2. Rajasika Love – It is done to attain worldly comforts.
3. Tamsika Love – It is done for attaining special powers (siddhis).
4. Sakamya Love or Gauna Love – It is devotion with desire for material gains.
Gradations of Love:
Sri Vallabhacharya has explained the different stages of love. Love has ten evolutionary stages of growth –
Love in Hinduism:
In the Chaitanya school, about twenty characteristics are enumerated as expressions of the unique Divine sentiment of Maha-Bhava in both its phases as love in union and love in separation such as intense longing, inability to bear separation, readiness to bear even intense pain in the interest of the beloved, loss of the sense of time, power to influence one’s environment with the intensity of one’s feeling, loss of sense of self even in normal consciousness, loss of all fear of death and welcoming it as the means for elemental union with Sri Krishna, supra-normal behaviour that looks like ‘Divine Madness’ and so on. The Maha-Bhava is said to have manifested only in Gopikaa and in some divine incarnations like Sri Chaitanya and Sri Ramakrishna.
The existence of God may be a subject of debate. To talk of God is not belief. Man, a finite being consciously feel for something unknown. They begin to unravel the mystery of infinite. They hear from the depth of their soul its irresistible call. Though the human body is finite the heart does not throb to its infinite capacity because the infinite reveals Itself in the inmost recesses of the human heart. It is man who seeks God for its own sake.
What is God:
The difference between man and man and between other animate and inanimate objects lies in the degree of divine manifestation. But there is unity of existence. In fact, at soul level and material level, there is no difference between she or he. It is only temporary appearance which is different. God is both with and without form and yet transcends both. He alone can say what else he is. God with form and God without form are like ice and water. Under the intensifying influence of the deep devotion of his worshipper, the Infinite reduces himself as it were, into the finite and appears before him as a Being with form.
God comes before us in the form of the needy, the sick, the poor, the wretched, is not a stranger to us, at all. Our salvation consists in the salvation of all who are the veritable manifestations of God.
Divine expresses into four cosmic powers – Wisdom, Strength, Harmony and Work – which are the bases of the four types of personality in the human mind. The wisdom of ancient India saw four powers of the creative. God manifests in four types of human beings, and called them as Brahmana, the Kshatirya, Vaishya and Sudra.
The thought of God has a wonderful effect on the human soul. It wholly transforms a man’s character. Those who establish them based on the highest purity, unselfishness and intense love. The divine love – in any form whether any deity or guru, gradually grows to perfection.
What Hinduism says:
A man cannot have both enjoyment of monetary sensual pleasures and enjoyment of permanent spiritual bliss. This world is not an illusion. It is a relative realty, while Brahman is an absolute Reality.
Unless the person is purified and become as little child, he shall not enter into the kingdom of Heaven i.e., bliss. Purity is freedom from unholy desires. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. The nearer a man approaches his goal, the more he captures his lost purity. He has less and less to conceal. Secretiveness becomes alien to him. A pure soul willingly lets others know. He is not disturbed by the shame of the guilty. His nudity is not nakedness. A pure soul is often an enigma to the worldly-minded. Innocence does not resist evil simply because it does not see it.
Reference: Voice of Babaji – by V T Neelakantan, S A A Ramaiah, Babaji Nagaraj
Science in Sanskrit Syllables
According to NASA, Sanskrit is the most scientific language, suitable to develop computer programming for their Artificial Intelligence program. The grammar also makes Sanskrit suitable for machine learning and even artificial intelligence. The first research paper published in this regard was by NASA scientist Rick Briggs in 1985. In Germany, 14 of the top universities teach Sanskrit. North America - primarily the US - has the largest number of Sanskrit academic institutions. Sanskrit is taught in several other countries such as Russia, Japan etc.
Sanskrit is co-original with the Vedas. The Vedas cannot be studied without the six Vedangas of which the first three deal with the spoken aspects of the language. These are Siksha (how to pronounce the letters of the syllables), Vyakarna (grammar, meaningful word formations), and Niruktam (certain fundamental root words). The fourth, Chandas describes the formation of sentences in metrical form. The remaining two Vedandas are Kalpa and Jyothisha, deal with space and time.
What is Akshara:
It is fascinating to trace the science in Sanskrit syllables. Traditionally, syllables (not letters) in Sanskrit are called Akshara, meaning "imperishable (entity)": "atoms" of speech, as it were. Akshara denotes the set of letters of Sanskrit. Akshara (aksha + ra) represents the A to Z of the wheel of creation itself which is characterized by the union of Shakti (aksha) and Shiva (ra) respectively. The sounds and thoughts which manifest from the mantras and sacred syllables (bijaksharas) reflect the power of speech and the power of thought which grows exponentially when they are illuminated by the light of Shiva or intelligence.
Science in Akshara:
Each akshara is mapped to a concept or significance. The collection of aksharas could form a set of concepts forming a ‘periodic table’ and by stringing Aksharas in suitable order and composition, one could use sound as a very powerful tool. Select words and seed Mantas (Bijaksharas) in Sanskrit are then interpreted using this conceptual basis. The concept and significance of each Sanskrit syllable has been properly dealt with in an article named - Akshara – The Forgotten Periodic Table by Sai Venkatesh Balasubramanian and Gomathi Balasubramanian.
The sound of akshara does not ever get destroyed. There are two aspects of non-destruction:
Number of Aksharas:
Aksharas are classified mainly into two types: Svara and Vyanjana. A consonant derives its name from the sound when the basic vowel "a", is sounded with the consonant. In Sanskrit and in other Indian languages, each consonant has a generic form in which its pronunciation will not have any vowel sound associated with it.
Stress or Tension
Stress or tension is an inevitable part of a busy, modern life. Stress by definition is, “physical, mental, or emotional strain or tension”. Stress is not always harmful since increased stress results in increased productivity. During stress, body responds by releasing hormones that increase your heart and breathing rates and ready your muscles to respond.
As per research done (07.08.2014) by American Psychological Association, American Institute of Stress, major causes of stress are job related, money, health, relationships, poor nutrition, digital or media overload and sleep deprivation. These causes include job related - co-worker tension, bosses, work overload; money – loss of job, retirement, medical expenses; Health – health problems, chronic illness; Relationships – fights with spouse or other relations, death of spouse, divorce, loneliness; Poor nutrition; digital or media overload – TV, internet, social networking; Sleep deprivation etc.
Nearly 9 in 10 Indians suffer from stress. As per findings of the 2018 Cigna 360 Well-Being Survey - Future Assured, conducted by Cigna TTK Health Insurance, show that stress levels are higher in Indian compared with other developed and emerging countries. 95 per cent of Indian millennials between the age group of 18-34 are stressed compared to the global average of 86 per cent.
Stress is, “a condition or feeling experienced when a person perceives that demands exceed the personal and social resources the individual is able to mobilize.” The root cause of stress is uncertainties. Fears, hatred, dislike, jealousy etc. are accumulated since birth and cause disruptive interaction with others. Much of the discontentment or stress is also due to behaviour of others and disruptive interactions.
Every psycho-physiological disturbance, every negative and destructive emotion causes conflict in the brain. This interferes with the normal tonic rhythm of the muscles and keeps them in an abnormally high state of stress. This over-activation of the muscles without the corresponding muscular activity results in a continual drain of energy from the body.
Impact of chronic stress:
Chronic stress can cause a variety of symptoms and affect your overall well-being. Symptoms of chronic stress include: irritability, anxiety, depression, headache, insomnia etc. Continuous mental tension leads to excessive muscular fatigue which ultimately results into chronic fatigue. Due to this, there continued drain of energy from the body. The digestive system, circulatory and respiratory systems have to work harder to provide more energy. Eventually, the body become less efficient and general health of body declines. Often there is a breakdown of one or more of these organs leading to ailments such as arthritis, coronary problems, constipation, asthma and so on. The endocrine system also suffers.
Further, emotional responses due to tension, automatically inject adrenalin into the bloodstream which causes contraction of muscles, contraction of blood vessels, increases the heart and respiratory rates, speeds up the thought processes and so on. Injection of adrenalin in bloodstream is warranted only during emergencies. But modern living abuses the emergency response system and eventually leads to malfunctioning of various organs and inefficiency. This is the precise reason of life style diseases – diabetes, cardiac stroke, BP, ulcers, brain stroke and so on.
Stress & Hinduism:
Memory is storehouse of past experiences which determine reactions in the similar situations. Hence, the mind is conditioned. These past experiences are stored as impressions (sanskars) and vasanas (deep-rooted desires) in sub-conscious realms. These impressions form the attitudes which are continuously updated in the light of new experiences.
Impressions stored in subconscious realms in the form of Prejudices, complexes, fears, etc. filter the incoming data. The perceptions from external situations sent through sensory nerves are processed in the subconscious realms of the mind in the light of impressions stored there. We have several prejudices such as some generally see good points of their favourite friends or relatives, whereas worst points of others; etc.
People have inherent fears. People have different fears such as fear of death, fear of failures fear from heights, fear from lonely or dark place etc. People are born with certain complexes such as undue attachment with the parent of opposite sex (Oedipus/Electra Complex), person views themselves as having God-like powers (God Complex), person that believes they are better than everyone else (Superiority Complex), person that always blames things that go wrong on themselves (Guilt Complex), person wants to be centre of attention (Hero Complex) etc.
Swami Satyananda Saraswati ji formulated following codes:
The modern life style patterns have transformed the physical, psychological and social health. Fast foods, mobile technology, rapid communication and digital world have moved the people towards sedentary habits and into illusionary world. This life style is isolating people leading to social isolation, stress proneness and psychological problems. Obesity, diabetes, BP, heart diseases, depression, dementia, Alzheimer, cancer, kidney & lung related diseases etc. are prevalent due to modern life style.
There is an old saying in Bharat,
“जैसा करे संग, वैसा चढ़े रंग; जैसा खाये अन्न, वैसा बने मन; जैसा पिये पानी, वैसी बने
Why is the impulsive behaviour:
Pleasurable experiences ignite desire and sense of attraction creates attachment which stimulate greater craving. The pursuit of pleasure plunges the person in sorrow & sickness in absence of fulfilment
The five senses of perception – Ear, nose, tongue, eye and skin come in contact with sound, smell, taste, sight and touch, send their impressions to the mind and are stored in the memory. Memory longs for further experiences and incite the mind to bypass intelligence and solicit the senses for yet more sense gratification. This in turn incites the mind to seek further experiences through the organs of action. Owing to the force of impressions (past experiences), one continues to hanker after renewed sensation. But one can never be satisfied. This breeds unhappiness and frustration.
Throughout this process, intelligence measures advantages and disadvantages in order to counterbalance memory, mind and senses which, recalling the taste of past pleasures, are keen for more. Almost inevitably, intelligence remains unheeded. Throughout over stimulation and misuse, the organs of action lose their potency and no longer capable of executing the organs of perception or the mind.
How to discipline sense organs of perception:
Patanjali in 4th century BC, postulated eight limbs of self-discipline & thought management - Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyhara, Dharna, Dhyana & Samadhi. Yama purifies the organs of action and develops the art of living in society honestly. Niyama cleanses the impurities and builds up the sadhaka’s own character. Through the practice of yama and niyama, the sadhaka develops emotional stability. Asana cleanses the physical and organic aspects of the body and eliminates physical and mental perturbations. Through asana, he keeps his body; the abode of the soul, free from disease. Pranayama regulates distribution of vital energy throughout his body and mind and removes the veil of ignorance covering the intelligence and stabilizes mind. Through pratyahara, one develops will power, detaches himself from the organs of senses and acquires clarity of thought. This is the beginning of culturing the brain. The practice of pratyahara modifies the mechanism. The mind, which until now had bypassed intelligence, now approaches it for guidance. Intelligence employs its discriminative faculty to weigh right and wrong, the appropriate and inappropriate, of memory and imprints. This goes against the current of memory and mind. When the mind stops, the senses, too, stop functioning.
What are the eight limbs to discipline self:
Yogi recognizes that a moment in time is timeless, changeless, real and eternal. Moment is minutest particle of time. Moment comes between rising impressions and their restraints and vice-versa. Moment is prolonged and expanded so that consciousness becomes absolute. Yogi remains attentive to the moment, and does not allow his attention to slip into movement of moments. He remains undisturbed, so his consciousness.
Practice and detachment develop different stages of Samadhi. Samadhi is superconscious state & is devoid of gunas. But sleep is natural condition of consciousness and tamsic. Initially, distinction is recognized between seer & seen. This is Samprajnata Samadhi (sabija) which consists of six gradations savitarka, nirvitarka, savichara, nirvichara, Ananda and asmita.
Balance in body, mind and life
Every person is aspiring in life to be happy. Harmonizing the opposing principles is essential for peace and happiness. World happiness is measured based on several economic life factors such as health, education. use of time, psychological well-being, good governance, cultural diversity and resilience, ecological diversity and resilience, community vitality. Most of these factors are external and beyond the control of individual. But Hinduism provides wholesome solutions for individual happiness. The root of individual happiness and well-being lies in “Balance in body, mind and life”. There are several contrary factors which needs to be balanced to get optimum level of happiness.
Balancing of contrary factors:
Intellect, Emotions and spirituality:
As per Samkhya Darshan, one of the six Hindu philosophies, there are internal organs viz. intellect (buddhi, knowledge, analytical power), mind (manas) and ego (ahamkara). Intellect is for knowledge & reasoning; mind is for thoughts & feelings and ego is for self-pride. Vedantic Darshan, another philosophy says internal organs are four mind, intellect, ego & memory store (Chitta). Apart the internal organs, consciousness (Jivtama, spirit, soul) plays very big role in life.
Some people are rational, some are emotional and others are spiritual. Intelligent people are rational, reason based, rule based and logic based. Emotional people identify emotions and feelings of self & others. They have self-awareness, self-control, and the ability to respond appropriately to the emotions of others. So, they have social skills. Spiritual people are with an ability to access higher meanings, values and unconscious aspects of the self. They have an ability to think out of the box, humility, deep intuitive sense and creativity.
Benefit - Balance in intelligence, thoughts, emotions and spirituality is required for well-being and to attain success in work and life.
Extroversion and introversion:
People who are high in extroversion tend to seek out social stimulation and opportunities to engage with others. These individuals are talkative, assertive, full of life, energy, and positivity. On the contrary, introversion is a personality trait characterized by a focus on internal feelings rather than on external sources of stimulation.
In Hinduism, the Pravarti path (extroversion) is defined as the outward path of creation, greater limitation and individuality, together with lowering of consciousness. The Nirvatti path (introversion) is the path back to the source, associated with breaking down of individual barriers, limitations and raising the levels of consciousness.
The Ishavasaya Upanishad emphasizes that one must live in the external as well as internal world. The Upanishad says that one must do both simultaneously. One must be both extroverted and introverted. It states, “Those who follow the path of action alone will surely enter the blinding darkness of ignorance. Furthermore, those who retreat from the world in order to seek knowledge through constant practice of meditative techniques, similarly, remain in the quagmire of ignorance.” One must try to integrate the paths of extroversion and introversion. It applies to Mahatma Gandhi, Swami Vivekananda and so on.
Benefit - Higher states of awareness only occur when there is perfect balance both in the inner and outer worlds. Rejection of the world does not remove the problems; they merely lie dormant in the mind. Failure to clear up the outer conflicts and concerns automatically prevents one gaining the highest benefits from introspection.
Materialism and Spiritualism:
Materialism represents material possessions, physical comfort and external aspects, whereas spirituality represents the divine and internal aspect of human life values like love, empathy, etc. Since human life has two aspects in the form of a physical body and spiritual self, Vivekananda emphasized the synthesis between eastern spiritualism and western materialism as both are incomplete or even ‘dangerous’ in the absence of each other.
As per Hinduism, Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha are the four Purusharthas or purposes of human life. Dharma means righteousness, virtues; Artha, means prosperity, wealth; Kama in its broader sense stands for all sensual pleasures and Moksha means self-realization. The first three needs to be balanced to attain moksha.
Benefit – Balancing of head, heart and hand is must for holistic development.
Left and right nervous system:
The sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems are important for modulating many vital functions, including respiration and cardiac contractility. The Ida and Pingala are the energy channels which connect these two different opposite nervous systems. Ida energy channel emanates from left side of mooladhara chakra and crosses on right side at ajna chakra in brain. It is the negative & cold energy and passes predominantly through left nostril. Pingala energy channel emanates from right side of mooladhara chakra and crosses on left side at ajna chakra in brain. It is the positive & hot energy and passes predominantly through right nostril.
Any imbalance in their flow, if continues over long period of time, then the entire physical and pranic body will become disharmonized. The result will be illness. This is the precise reason of prevalence of diseases such as cancer, cardiac related, depression etc. thus balance between Ida and Pingala is essential.
Benefit - When inner and outer realms are harmonized, it brings peace and bliss.
Left and right sides of brain:
The left side of the brain is responsible for controlling the right side of the body. It also performs tasks that have to do with logic, such as in science and mathematics. On the other hand, the right hemisphere coordinates the left side of the body, and performs tasks that have do with creativity and the arts.
Benefit – So, scientific methodology and creativity need to be balanced.
Selfishness and Selflessness:
Selfishness is being concerned excessively or exclusively, for oneself or one's own advantage, pleasure, or welfare, regardless of others. On the other hand, selflessness is striving for the well-being of others. As per modern psychology, selfishness becomes a problem when it leads to a lack of consideration, lack of respect and lack of empathy for others. Striving to find balance between what is important to you and others is a healthier. One must develop understanding of both oneself and others and try to follow the rule: “Do to others as you would wish them to do unto you.”
In Hinduism, In the Shrimad Bhagavad Gita, Shree Krishna explained that the essence of karma yoga is selfless action. In the chapter 12, Lord says, detachment, universal love, resignation, self-control, absence of egoism etc. are the common characteristics of perfect person. The Hindu philosophy mentions “Vasudhaiva kutumbakam” which means that the whole world is one single family.
Benefit – Development of self as well as others is important for overall well-being.
Catabolism & Anabolism:
Human being gains energy through breath, food, sleep and bliss. Energy loss is wastefully done by sense organs (such as irrelevant or too much talking, watching negative news or videos, listening undesirable talks or audios) negative habits such as hypocrisy, negative emotions such anger, jealousy, greed, attachment, excessive pride etc. In case of negative balance, we lose precious energy and immunity and invite diseases. On the contrary, energy gaining is enhanced by pranayama, balance diet, adequate & sound sleep and self-confidence & zeal. Moderation in all aspects of life is necessary to balance energy gain and energy loss. One needs to endeavour to balance catabolism and anabolism by balancing energy gain & loss.. Anabolism requires energy to grow and build. Catabolism uses energy to break down. These metabolic processes work together in all living organisms to do things like produce energy and repair cells. In the early years of life, anabolism is greater, so person grow. In middle age, the balance shifts towards catabolism but anabolism continues at lower pace. In case energy intake is more than required, aging starts. In old age, catabolism enhances and anabolism becomes negligible.
Benefit: When Catabolism and anabolism in the body is balanced, the aging process halts. The person remains at the age, when it is balanced.
Speech and Silence:
A fine balance between active communication and discreet silence is essential in both professional and personal lives. There is an old saying, silence speaks volumes. Through silence (maun vrat), one declines reacting to emotional impulses, good or bad, they learn to analyse the origins of them. Understanding one's emotions better and refraining from action or speech under their influence can help many manage their emotions better.
As per Hinduism, Mauna (Silence) refers to peace of mind, inner quietude. The Hindu texts insist upon proper understanding of silence by experiencing it through control of speech and practice. In Katha Upanishad, Yama tells Nachiketa that he who has extracted and tasted the real essence enjoys true happiness in total silence.
Benefit – Proper communication requires both speaking and thinking. Without thinking and analysing, it is not possible to communicate properly.
Balancing of dietary intake including acidic & Alkaline eating:
As per WHO, healthy diet helps to protect against malnutrition in all its forms, as well as noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), including such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke and cancer. Proportions of calories, proteins, minerals, vitamins dietary fibre, etc. need to be balanced for health. In addition, proportion of alkaline food and acidic food should also be balanced.
As per Hinduism, the physical body is made up of five elements – earth, water, air, space and fire. These elements manifest into three subtle energies - Vat (space & air), Pitta (fire & water) and kapha (earth & water). Vata–pitta–kapha are present in every cell, tissue, and organ. When in balance, they create Balance of Vat, Pitta and Kapha results in health, while imbalance results in disease. Ayurveda delineates twenty fundamental attributes in our bodies. The body-mind constitution of each one is different based on proportion of the three subtle energies. These combinations create different habits, tendencies and body constitution. One of the requirements in Ayurveda is to take diet as per the constitution to stay healthy.
Benefit – Eating a healthy, balanced diet is an important part of maintaining good health.
Eating and Fasting:
Balance between eating and fasting helps in maintaining good health. Overeating can lead to a host of health problems. Ayurveda sees the basic cause of many diseases as the accumulation of toxic materials. Regular cleansing of toxic material keeps us healthy. Fasting overhauls the respiratory, circulatory, digestive and urinary system. In moderate fasting, the organs of the body are cleansed and renewed.
Benefit – Eating for energy & nutrition and fasting to cleansing, both need to be necessarily balanced.
Physical and mental work:
In modern era, majority of work done by people is mental. Even the entertainment is through electronic gadgets. When ratio of physical and mental work distorts, a large number of diseases crop up. Hence, the balancing of physical and mental work is absolutely necessary for healthy life.
Benefit – it is necessary element for disease free life.
WHAT IS HINDUISM
It is an important question, why at all any religion required in the life. In fact, all the human beings work at three levels – physical body, mind and soul which require different recipes in life. Physical body is hardware in terms of computer. Physical world provides various opportunities to work on physically. Mind is software to think, to decide and directs the physical body to act upon. Knowledge acquired, intellectual ability, analytical power, innovative thinking etc. are food for mind. Peace, pleasure, purity etc. are the requirements of soul.
Religion should be applicable, capable and most practical guide to lead most peaceful and joyful life. Hence, the basic requirements from any religion are:
Can any religion codified centuries and centuries ago be applicable, capable and practical guide in modern times? Then, how can it bring ultimate happiness and peace.
Whether Hinduism is organic:
Hinduism, the mother of so many religions, is not only beautiful but bountiful. Unlike other religions, Hinduism has a series of prophets and a bouquet of incarnations of God. It has so many acclaimed religious books, so many holy places to visit and a large number of realized saints; as against other religions which have limited options. This is because, Hinduism has pretty long organic growth and provided solutions to different problems and challenges faced by different civilizations.
India has been spiritual homeland where saints, seers, avtaras and siddhas appear as such it is the homeland of religions and spirituality. The sages, seers, siddhas and incarnations appeared in Bharat, not only codified the best instructions to live life happily and peacefully but also taught the ideal decisions to be taken in practical situations through their life stories. Historical events expounded in Mahabharata and Ramayana, in particular are still relevant in modern times.
Whether Hinduism brings ultimate peace happiness and peace:
The wisdom of Hinduism is for self-realization and self-experience rather than for only bookish knowledge gained from religious books directly by you or through others. Holy books & spiritual teachers are great and big aid to self-development.
But Hinduism provides various paths for self-realization to suit the nature of person. Some persons are highly practical and work oriented, some are emotional, some people are highly intellectual and some are intutive, four paths of self-realization, peace and happiness – karma yoga, bhakti yoga, jnana yoga and raja yoga respectively are provided in Hinduism. Upanishads, Shrimad Bhagavat Gita and other scriptures explain minutely all the facets of these four paths.
During the course of its developments, Hinduism inculcated among the followers’ great qualities such as patience, harmony, respect for faiths of other people, etc. the focus of Hinduism has been to realize the divinity in people and that process to suppress, nay surpass, the lower human instincts and to recognize the brotherhood of humans and in fact the unity of all life. The maladies of many religions such as religious conversions, intolerance, expansionism etc. are non-existent in Hinduism.
Swami Vivekananda experimented and realized that life itself is suffering, that suffering has a cause, that suffering can be removed and there is a way to remove suffering. Ignorance and desires are the cause which can be removed by prajna or intuitive wisdom. The eradication of cause of suffering, bring eternal happiness or bliss. So, heaven (ecstasy or bliss) can be realized in this lifetime, as per Hinduism unlike many religions which claim heaven or hell is at distant place, somewhere in sky. Thus, Hinduism is more realistic and practical.
Great tenets of Hinduism:
The real word for Hinduism is ‘Sanatana dharma’. ‘Sanatana’ is that which is permanent in nature and ‘dharma’ is that which holds the society together. It means the code of conduct which holds for all times for social harmony and integration.
Although in Hinduism a number of deities cater the spiritual & material need of the devotees, yet it proclaims unity of consciousness, Oneness of existence and declares, “There is only one reality of truth. That is Brahman or Pramatama. It is “One without a second.” Names and forms are but appearances.
Sometimes it is said that Hinduism is not a religion but a way of life. It means that Hinduism is not like other religions. In other religions, there is only one book and one belief system about God, heaven and the devil. Hinduism has a number of belief systems under the umbrella of one single philosophy. Hinduism was not propounded by a single prophet. It did not originate in troubled times.
Hinduism can be explained as under:
Swami Vivekanada, the Hindu monk of India, during his address at world Parliament of religions at Chicago in September, 1893 explained the Hinduism as under:
Swami Chinmayanandaji was a renowned saint. Once, a 'secular' minded journalist, who generally showed Hinduism in poor light, asked a question to Swamiji:
Q: Who is the founder of Islam?
A: Prophet Mohammad.
Q: Who is the founder of Christianity?
A: Jesus Christ.
Q: Who is the founder of Hinduism?
Thinking that Swamiji has no answer, the lady journalist proceeded: There is no founder and hence, Hinduism is not a religion or Dharma at all.
A: Then, Swamiji said: You are right. Hinduism is not a religion. It is a Science.
She did not understand that. Swamiji put some more questions to her.
Q: Who is the founder of Physics?
A: No one person.
Q: Who is the founder of Chemistry?
A: No one person.
Q: Who is the founder of Biology?
A: No single person.
A large number of persons, from time to time, contributed to the wealth of knowledge of any Science.
Hindu Dharma is a Science, developed over the centuries, contributed by saints and sages for giving right direction to the society. Islam has only one book -Quran.
Christianity has only one book -Bible. But for Hinduism, I can take you to a library and show you hundreds of books. Hence, Hinduism is a scientific religion- called Sanatana Dharma.
Fear & Fearlessness
Fear creates delusive vision, which pulls every one of us down and binds us under its control. It is life, whereas, fear is death. Fear throws us into hypnotism, whereas fearlessness de-hypnotizes us. Fear disturbs the mental equipoise and physical health; fearlessness makes man at home with Nature enjoying the solace of life. It is because of fear that everything is marred in this world. In beauty, there is fear of ugliness. In birth, there is fear of death. In learning, there is the fear of ignorance. In victory, the fear of defeat. In pleasure there is the fear of pain and praise the fear of blame. But man is consciously fearless realizing his self. Fearlessness is the one goal of every individual.
Fear is natural, emotional and instinctive response to a perceived or imaginary threat. It is in-built protective mechanism to safeguard against the perils of life. The emotion of fear helps the people to stay safe. But extreme fears may cause even panic attacks.
Fear arises from weakness. Inhumanity and selfishness are born of weakness. One lie, steals, kill and commit other crimes because of weaknesses. Fear led to making various social institutions which were for physical security and mental security. Real security comes from spiritual security of realizing one’s own undying nature.
Never let take control of you and take risk to do that thing. Be positive and believe that you will have best result. Nothing is larger than life. Always think events and moments are smaller. Situations change. Celebrity, influential or powerful, everybody is human being.
Fears, the types & causes:
Fear can be simple or intense which are caused by extreme conditions and situations. Phobia is an intense fear reaction to a particular thing or a situation.
We experience different fears during different phases of our lives. As time goes by, we may leave behind some old fears and acquire new ones.
Physiological reactions of Fear:
Fear induces negative responses such as aversion to people and places, shyness, inferiority complex, withdrawal, neurosis, low self-esteem, inadequacy, timidity, conformity, aggression etc.
Several natural physiological changes take place that help us prepare to be more efficient in a dangerous situation: our pupils dilate, our breathing accelerates and our heart rate and blood pressure rise.
Fearlessness & Hinduism:
A. Conquering Fear:
B. Hinduism for developing Fearlessness:
In Hinduism, the ancient sages have deeply researched the causes of fear and to achieve fearlessness.
1. Vedanta & Vivekananda by Swami Swahananda
Consciousness is awareness and has four states – unconscious (dreamless sleep), subconscious (dream-filled sleep), conscious (waking state) and superconscious (Turya, Samadhi). In normal daily life, consciousness helps the senses to see the objects of the world with thoughts of acquisition, rejection and resignation. Dhyana purifies consciousness. Samadhi leads consciousness towards the soul.
Consciousness, though single, directs multiple thoughts, sometimes creating disparities between words and deeds. It is indirectly responsible for numerous activities, and becomes the source of desires and their fulfilment. If it stops directing thoughts, the need to culture the consciousness towards transformation does not arise.
Consciousness is the veil between body and soul. It can be pulled in two directions; outward toward its mother, prakriti or inward towards its father, purusa. If consciousness is sea, its movements (vrittis) are the ripples. Composition of body, soul and consciousness are explained as under:
Composition of body:
The body is composed of seven different sheaths viz. skeletal (structure), physiological (energy), emotional (mind), intellectual (intellect), blissful, consciousness and soul (annamya, pranamaya, manomaya, vijanamaya, anandamaya, citta and atman respectively). Blissful sheath is called as causal body (Karana sarrira). Physiological, emotional and intellectual sheaths form the subtle body (suksma sarrira), and the skeletal sheath is the gross body (karya sarrira).
As per Kapil’s Samhya darshan, Prakriti is the root material, from this consciousness (Mahat) is produced. From consciousness, springs ego, intelligence, mind, five subtle elements (tanamtras), five senses of perception, five organs of action and five gross elements.
Soul (purusa, atman, seer):
The soul is absolute pure knowledge, eternal, changeless, formless and has no particular location. Universal soul or Parmataman is seed of all individual souls and free from influence of nature (Prakriti). It is unalloyed.
Consciousness is the fluid enveloping the mind, intellect and ego. The fluid tends to become opaque due to its contact with the external world via these three components which receive sensory impressions. The result is that the soul is obscured.