Showing posts from January, 2016

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch- 8. Part- 4.

Chapter 8: Sri Radha – The Divine Mystery-4.

The term 'Love of God' may mean either love that a devotee evinces in regard to God, or the love that God has for a devotee.

Either way, we can take this term, 'Love of God'.

There is no half-hearted and mediocre attitude in respect of God.

Either it is a whole-souled dedication or it is a nothing.

There is no partiteness or reserved attitude towards God. It is a completion and a fulfilment which requires on our side also a fulfilled and a complete approach.

 But we are, as I told you, always men and we can think only as men.

We are women, and we can think only as women.

These prejudices do not leave us and they cannot leave us.

Apart from the idea of male and female, there are other shackles by which we are bound to this earth, all of which are, as it were, steel chains with which we are bound to our own personalities and prejudices, which have to melt into a liquefied form before God, the all-encompassing, super-legalisti…

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-8. Part -3.

Chapter 8: Sri Radha – The Divine Mystery-3.

Two extremes meet in the concept of God's Glory, and in the mediocre approaches of devotees on the path of divine love, these extremes are not felt.

Most of us, may we say all of us, are mediocre followers of the path of God.

The extreme steps are not intended for fragile minds, weak bodies, impure emotions and tarnished intellects or prejudiced reasons.

The vehicle that can contain the divine mystery has to have the capacity to bear the fire which is God's Glory.

Many times it is said that the embrace of God is an embrace of fire, and no man has lived as man after having seen and embraced God.

These are some of the statements we hear from the adepts on the path.

The Radhakrishna mystery is a secret, even as God Himself is a secret.

 What can be a greater secret than God's Existence!

You cannot know where God is, or what God is doing, or why God has created the world.

You cannot say what His relation is to us, or, our relation …

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-8. Part -2.

Chapter 8: Sri Radha – The Divine Mystery-2.

But the specific significance that is attached to the relationship between Sri Krishna and Radha is the supernal love that operates in this mysterious relation between God and the world.

The world is ruled by love, which is the quintessence of God.

The basic stuff of God's Being may be said to be Love, Joy, Delight, Bliss, Ananda.

But man, being what he is, can interpret this joy or delight, this satisfaction or love, this affection or pull, only in terms of his experiences.

There are only men and women in this human world, and we do not see a third thing.

Therefore, when men and women contemplate the mystery of God, they cannot think in any other way, except in terms of men and women.

This is a travesty of religious mystery and a demonstration of the human incapacity to equal the requirement on the part of man by the Law of God.

Read any Purana or any Epic, still you will never be able to understand the relation between Krishna and Ra…

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-8. Part -1.

Chapter 8: Sri Radha – The Divine Mystery-1.

A Discourse delivered on Sri Radha-Ashtami Day, the 6th of September, 1981.

Sri Radhashtami is a joyous occasion observed throughout the country, especially in the North, bringing to one's hallowed memory the advent of Radha, a name familiar to every religious historian and devotee.

But, there is nothing in religious history which is so little understood as the particular spiritual significance which is the theme of the observance of this sacred day, the eighth day in this bright half of the month of Bhadrapada (August-September), the birthday of Radha.

The word 'Radhakrishna' is a reputed compound name, and devotees generally run into mystical contemplation and even fly into ecstasies in their moods in an attempt to understand the relationship between Sri Krishna and Radha.

But, as is the case with almost everything in the world, this relationship which is deeply spiritual and mystical, is hard for the human mind to understand…

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-7. Part -14.

Chapter 7: Lord Ganesa – The Remover of Obstacles -14.

People are even afraid to forget taking the holy Prasada of Sri Satyanarayana Puja because of the story behind it.

 Do you know what will happen to you if you do not take the Prasada?

It is mentioned in the story that the whole thing will be finished – all your wealth, property, wife, children, etc., will go to the dogs in one second.

The fear of it makes us bow down and wait for the Prasada, even if it is late in the night.

These stories are not meaningless narrations of cock and bull incidents.

They instil into our minds a divine urge and a fear of the Divine Presence.

After all, we are human beings who are ruled more by sentiments and feelings than by our reason or our so-called understanding.

This psychology of the human being is taken advantage of by the writers of the epics and the Puranas to instil faith in our hearts through these stories.

This is a little tribute to the glory of Maha Ganapati.

Chapter 7: Lord Ganesa – Th…

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-7. Part -13.


Chapter 7: Lord Ganesa – The Remover of Obstacles -13.

A person becomes smaller and smaller as he approaches God, just as a candle flame becomes dimmer and dimmer as it goes nearer and nearer to the sun; and just before the sun, it is not there.

We cannot even see its existence.

It vanishes.

Likewise, when we approach God we become smaller and smaller, humbler and humbler, littler and littler, until we become nothing.

In this nothingness, we will find God Himself filling us.

When there is total emptiness created by an abolition of ourselves, in this emptiness or vacuum created, God fills it Himself.

"Empty thyself and I shall fill thee."

The Mahaganapati Purana, the Ganapati Atharvasirsha Upanishad, the Ganesa Gita and several anecdotes occurring in the Mahabharata and the other Puranas glorify this aspect of the Supreme Almighty which requires our submission at His feet and expects us to recognise Him as the sole power that can remove all obstacles…

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-7. Part -12.

Chapter 7: Lord Ganesa – The Remover of Obstacles -12.

But there is something mysterious about things.

Everything is not clear to the minds of men.

There are great secrets.

And as I began by saying, the spiritual path is itself a great secret.

The little Japa that we do, the scriptures that we read, the audience that we hold and whatever we appear to be doing, is only an outer crust of the mystery of life.

The mystery is finally in ourselves.

We ourselves do not know who is goading us to think in this manner.

That goading principle is the mystery.

If we recognise this mystery within us which mystifies even our intelligence and our efforts, we will be humble, simple and small before God, because spiritual Sadhana is an art of becoming smaller and smaller.

It is not to become bigger and bigger.

Swami Krishnananda
To be continued  ...

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-7. Part -11.

Chapter 7: Lord Ganesa – The Remover of Obstacles -11.

The human mind is elated and enthused by hearing stories.

Images, paintings, music, idols, dance – any kind of picturesque presentation of religion and spirituality or philosophy – is generally more appealing than cut and dry logic, as we know very well.

The Puranas and the epics bring home to us the idea of the necessity to accept the power of God as the only medium by which obstacles can be removed.

So, He is called Vighnesvara, the God who is not merely the Ganapati or the ruler of the hosts or Ganas, but also a Remover of all impediments on all paths.

When I was a small boy, I heard a story told by a neighbour.

There was a person who never believed in the gods, and when his daughter's marriage was to be performed, someone said, "First of all you must worship Ganesa. Do not be in a hurry."

He replied, "Let him be Ganesa or his grandfather; I do not care for anybody."

He took the Murti of Ganesa and thre…

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-7. Part -10.

Chapter 7: Lord Ganesa – The Remover of Obstacles -10.

Sometimes they look like astral beings.

These Ganas are ruled by Ganapati under the order of Siva.

So Ganapati means the generalissimo, as it were, of the hosts who always live in Kailasa.

Apart from making Ganapati the Leader of his hosts, Lord Siva bestowed another blessing on Him, saying,

"You shall be the first one to be worshipped on all occasions."

So this is the order or the ordinance of Lord Siva.

The ordinance stands forever.

It is a permanent ordinance from the Great Master :-

"No one will be worshipped before you – not even me.

After you are worshipped alone, anybody else will be worshipped."

We will not worship Lord Siva or Lord Narayana without first worshipping Ganapati.

"Om Gam Ganapataye Namah", is a Mantra to propitiate Ganapati.

Swami Krishnananda
To be continued  ...

Spiritual Import of Religious Festivals :Ch-7. Part -9.

Chapter 7: Lord Ganesa – The Remover of Obstacles -9.

But ironically enough, He would not put the same head back.

We do not know the reason why He did this.

He said, "Bring the head of someone who is sleeping with his head towards the north."

This is why it is said that we should not sleep with our heads towards the north.

Otherwise, Siva will search for us! And they found nobody except an elephant lying with its head towards the north.

Its head was severed and brought.

The elephant's head was attached to the trunk of this boy and life was given by the great Siva.
He became alive and was named as Ganapati, which designation was bestowed upon him by Lord Siva Himself, maybe to pacify Parvati or to bring about a peaceful atmosphere around.

Lord Siva not only gave him life, but also made him the leader of His hosts.

Ganapati is, therefore, the leader of the hosts of Lord Siva Himself.

There is a large audience before Lord Siva, consisting of varieties of Ganas.

Ganas are d…