Tuesday, March 25, 2008

BG 7.14

We have to have Bhakti [devotion] to God and we have to nourish it so that it grows and yield fruits. To enable this, many customs, traditions, sacred rivers and ponds, Kshetrams, etc., are made available in our country, India. We have been visiting many Kshetrams and we are now in an important Kshetram - Therazhundur, an Abode of Sri Krishna with Cow and calf. It is also called Thiruvazhundur. Today's [26th March 2008] is from the Pushkarini of the temple.

It is called Darsa Pushkarini. By understanding the reason for the appearance of this pond, we can know the history of this place. There was a King by name Uparisiravasu, who could ride his chariot in the sky. While flying like this, if the shadow of the chariot fell on any person below, that person would lose his strength. Once he was flying over this place. At that time Sri Krishna was playing with cows and calves here. Shadow of the chariot fell on the cows below, and all of them became weak. Seeing the plight of the cows, Sri Krishna, with His foot pressed the shadow and the flying chariot crash landed and the wheels got buried in the ground. Since the chariot was pressed into the ground, the place got the name Ther [chariot] Azhundu [pressed] Oor[place] = Therazhundur. In Sanskrit it is called Rathanabjanapuram. The spot where the chariot got stuck up is this pushkarini. Uparisiravasu could not take out the chariot and enquired the persons near by and they showed a Cowherd. The King approached the Cowherd and prayed to help to get the chariot out of mud. Cowherd agreed, but wanted to know what compensation the King would offer to Him. The King, not realizing the Lord as the Cowherd, haughtily said he would offer anything. Cowherd said that if the King could offer thousand pots of butter, got by churning in the same day, He would retrieve the chariot. King was able to bring 999 pots of butter. Since he could not get that one pot till evening, the King thought he could fill one pot with water and offer and the Cowherd might not notice. But the Lord, Who took Avatar to consume milk and butter in Gokulam, knew the trick of the King and He first opened the very same pot with water. When other pots were opened all of them were full of water only and the King got panic and apologised. When the King enquired as to Who the Cowherd was, the King of Devas - Sri Devadi Raja- graced the King. This incident took place on an Amavasya [New moon] day in the month of Thai. Amavasya is also known as Darshan and so this pond is called Darsha Pushkarini. Even today to mark this incident, 1000 pots of butter are offered and Sri Aamaruviappan [Utsavar] aka Sri Gosaka, comes out on Garuda vahanam along with Sri Govindarajan Sri Ranganathan of nearby temples on Their Garuda vahanams , and graces the devotees, on Thai Amavasya. From this we understand that the Lord is the king, the chariot, the cows, the pots of butter and what not. Sri Krishna has been telling Arjuna this aspect only in the last few slokas. He told in the last four slokas that He is all the desired articles in this Universe and He is the desired qualities in them. He is the desired quality of Butter and Water. When all good qualities were listed by Sri Krishna, Arjuna got doubt as who represented bad qualities like the pride of the King Uparisiravasu. We saw two qualities in the king- his pride and later his humility. If his humility, which is desired by us, was responsible for his devotion and is represented by the Lord, then who is responsible for the pride which also was possessed by the King? In reply Sri Krishna tells in 12th sloka that all the satvika, rajasa and tamasa qualities emanate from Him only:

ye caiva sattvika bhava
rajasas tamasas ca ye
matta eveti tan viddhi
na tv aham tesu te mayi

"Know that all states of being—be they of goodness, passion or ignorance—are manifested by My energy. I am, in one sense, everything, but I am independent. I am not under the modes of material nature, for they, on the contrary, are within Me."

What is the difference between the contents of the preceding four slokas and of this sloka? In the last four slokas, Sri Krishna listed all the desired good qualities of desirable objects and told He represented all of them. Strength of good persons, thermal capacity of Agni, brightness of the Sun, etc., are all He. Satvika bhava = righteous qualities, ye caiva = of all persons and objects. Normally righteous persons will prefer satva qualities only in various objects. Sri Krishna tells that He represents all those. Rajasa = [similarly] the rajo qualities and desired by persons with rajo quality or ego, tamasa = [and] tamo qualities desired by tamasa [dull] persons, tan = all these [satva, rajo and tamas], matta eva = emanate from Me [Sri Krishna], viddhi = understand. So all articles with satva, rajo and tamas qualities all, without exception, emanate or originate from Sri Krishna. Te mayi = [all these are] sustained by Me [Sri Krishna]. All these materials are Sri Krishna's body. Aham tu = while I [ Sri Krishna] am , na tesu = not dependent on nor needy of [them]. All originate from Him and all are sustained by Him; yet He is not dependent on any of them. What is satvika bhava? Clear understanding and knowledge, contentment, happiness, honesty, etc. All these qualities one gets out of satva guna and Sri Krishna already told that He represented all these. All desirous of these qualities also are represented by Him. Rajo guna is the cause for dissatisfaction, anger, intolerance, hatred, instability, etc. We can see some healthy persons gasping while conversing or unstable in their talks. Some look very hasty and we can see some dissatisfaction and they do not have peace. Some exercise like pranayamam may help them. Contentment with what we have will bring peace and happiness. Tamo guna gives raise to unclear understanding, confusion, sluggishness, etc. Sri Krishna tells that all those possessing these three - satva, rajo and tamo - qualities and the objects of such qualities, all originate from Him. We have already seen how the creation started. All persons having any or all these qualities, are all created from Him. All these three qualities and those possessing these have all originated from Him. It is just like our body is controlled and sustained by the atman inside. Body is dependent on the soul inside. Similarly, all these qualities and the persons and matters which possess these qualities are all body for Sri Krishna. All have originated from Him. But, He also says here that He is not in them. Though He resides in every matter abstract or real, here a different interpretation is meant. Our body is dependent on the soul for its activities. We should also remember that atman by itself can not do anything. It needs a body to do anything. Atman can not see by itself. It can not eat by itself. It needs a body. Even if body as such is jadam or without any intellect and it needs an atman to know things, atman also is dependent on a body for action. Body is entirely dependent on atman and atman requires a body for some of its activities. Now, we saw that all matters and living beings in this Universe, possessing any or all the three qualities are dependent on the Lord and they are created by Him. But He does not require or need any of these, unlike atman which needs a body for some activities. Not even for any minutest need, the Lord is dependent on anything in this Universe. He is absolutely independent. This is what is implied when He says He is not in them, like our atman in our body. We should remember that He pervades all matters in this Universe, and all are Body to Him, yet, He is not dependent on any of them even for a single requirement. This very important principle is announced by the Lord in this sloka.

No comments: