Episode # 30 – Bhagawan Brahma creates the “Varnashrama Dharma”!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the key characteristics of Bhagawan Vishnu’s incarnation in the form of Bhagawan Varaaha, wherein Sage Paraashara also refers to as Bhagawan Yagnya-Varaaha. He describes the salient features of Bhagawan Yagnya-Varaaha as he compares Him with Agni Bhagawan who emerges with all his might and “Tejas” from within the “Homa-Kunda”, during the spiritual offering. Moreover, Bhagawan Varaaha has the strength of a thousand elephants put together and with this might, He takes on Hiraynyaksha single-handedly. Sage Paraashara also adds another point here that the ornaments Bhagawan Varaaha was wearing around His neck and shoulders comprised of innumerable precious stones, out of which one stone was the great “Meru” mountain, and the other was the great “Himachala” mountain! If these huge mountains should be part of Bhagawan’s ornaments, we can imagine here as to how huge and mammoth His size would have been! 

Thus, we can worship Bhagawan Varaaha in the form of Bhagawan Yagnya-Varaaha here, and many of us might be aware that we can worship Bhagawan Varaaha even today in many of the Divyadesams of Bhagawan Vishnu. For instance, there is a place near Chennai, called “Thiru-vida-vendai”, on the way to Mahabalipuram and Pondicherry, on the east coast road. Here, we have the sanctum-sanctorum of Bhagawan Vishnu as Bhagawan Varaha. Similarly, in Mahabalipuram too, we have the same deity whom we can worship. In similar lines, if we go to the famous Tirupati – Tirumala Divyadesha, the presiding deity of that place is Bhagawan Adi-Varaaha. It is only after worshipping Bhagawan Adi-Varaaha, we can proceed further to worship Bhagawan Venkateshwara at Tirumala. Similarly, we have another place called “Shrimushnam” near to a town called Vriddhachalam in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu. In this place, we can worship Bhagawan Varaaha as a “Svayamvakta-Kshetra”, which means, Bhagawan Varaaha had automatically taken form and shape here. Nobody installed the “Vigraha” (Idol) of Bhagwan Varaaha here. Thus, we can worship Bhagawan Varaaha at many many places and this is where Bhagawad Ramanuja too explains that Bhagawan Varaaha is perhaps the only incarnation of Bhagawan Vishnu that devotees like us can trust and worship. 

Thus, we can see here that Bhagawan Varaaha incarnated in this world to protect Mother Bhoomadevi (Mother Earth) which was abducted by the Raakshasa Hiranyaksha. With this we come to the end of the events that are associated with the incarnation of Bhagawan Varaaha, and we now move further into the next incarnation. Here, Sage Paraashara gives us an interesting accord. He explains that Bhagawan Vishnu splits the world into four different parts. We’ve already witnessed till now that Bhagawan Brahma had taken birth and simultaneously the world had come into existence from Bhagawan Vishnu. Bhagawan Brahma had been entrusted with continuing the job of creating the world further and in turn, Svaayambhuva Manu too has an important part to play too. Thus, whatever Bhagawan Brahma is creating forms the first quarter or the first part of the world here. Apart from this there are three more parts, which together comprise what is referred to as “Nitya-Vibhuti” or “Vaikunta”. As we read from the “Purushasuktam” of the Yajur Veda thus, 

“Braahmanosya mukhamaaseeth! Baahurajanyah kritaha! Uuru tadasya yadvaishyaha! Padbhyaagum shoodro ajaayata!!”

Thus, here we can witness from the “Purushasuktham” that the Brahmins were created from Bhagawan Brahma’s mouth. Now the question comes here – Who is a Brahmin? A person who is a total embodiment of “Satva Guna” is called Brahmin. A person who is an embodiment of “Rajo Guna”, is referred to as Kshatriya. A person who has a combination of Rajo Guna and Tamo Guna, is called “Vaishya”. Thus, the Brahmin emerges from Bhagawan Brahma’s face (mouth, to be precise). The Kshatriyas emerge from Bhagawan Brahma’s shoulders. The Vaishyas emerge from Bhagawan Brahma’s thighs. Thus, we can see here that based on whatever would be the occupation of each of these sects, they arise accordingly from different body parts of Bhagawan Brahma. For instance, since Brahmins have to make their living out of chanting Vedas, they are born from Bhagawan Brahma’s mouth. Similarly, because Kshatriyas should have the valor and strength to protect and defend the country, they are born from the shoulders of Bhagawan Brahma. Similarly, since the Vaishyas have to sit and do business activities, they were born from the thighs of Bhagawan Brahma. 

Thus, we can see here as to how the different Varnashrama Dharmas have taken birth. We should understand here that all the Varnashrama Dharmas were born from different parts of the same Bhagawan Brahma and nobody is superior / inferior here. All of us were born from a single source only, and the only difference between the four sects is the occupation that they do. There are no other differences or complexities that are involved in the Varnaashrama Dharma. Hence, we should forget all the misunderstandings that cloud around this concept. 

So for today, let us understand these important points and let us wait till the next episode to continue our discussion further. Stay tuned! 🙂

Episode # 29 – Bhagawan YAGNYA-VARAAHA – Significance!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed a glimpse of our ignorance wherein we fail to understand the root cause of all our sufferings and problems that we face. Little do we realize that this root cause is none other than we ourselves only! It is we who create the problems, it is we who dwell amidst the problems and it is we who suffer because of the consequences. However, enroute this process, we forget this fact, and when it comes to the suffering part, we squarely and conveniently put the blame on Bhagawan for “inflicting” sufferings upon us! Is it Bhagawan’s job to inflict sufferings on His own children? Is Bhagawan stone-hearted, that He’s going to mess up with us this way? Although the answer is “no”, we do not tend to accept it. Although we keep saying repeatedly that Bhagawan is an embodiment of compassion and infinite love, we’re yet to realize this in our practical life situations. This is where we’ve to develop spiritual maturity. We need to have a strong will power to face problems as they come, and not keep “passing the buck” on to Bhagawan. 

Of course, we can pray to Bhagawan for His helping hand in alleviating us from the suffering. I’m never denying this. We can pray sincerely to Bhagawan to bring us out of the problem. But this cannot be the case wherein we blame Bhagawan for what we’re experiencing. The irony here with all of us is that, if we’re enjoying the good aspects of our “Karma”, we would forget Bhagawan totally! We would remember Him only when we suffer! How fair is this? Isn’t it “partiality” and “bias” that we show towards Bhagawan? If we’re blaming Him for the suffering, we should also praise and remember Him during our happy times too, isn’t it? If we’re not able to have that much maturity to stop blaming Bhagawan, we should atleast develop the maturity to praise and remember Bhagawan when we’re happy! So we should develop either of these two points within us as we move on with our spiritual pursuit. 

Moving on thus, we had also witnessed the divine incarnation of Bhagawan Varaaha as explained by Sage Paraashara. He explains how much strength did Bhagawan Varaaha have – It was equivalent of a thousand elephants put together, He also had the name “Yagnya-Varaaha”. We would have also heard many people having this name of “Yagnya-Varaaha”. Now what is the significance of “Yagnya-Varaaha” here? Many of us might know what a “Yagnya” is. We’ve witnessed this concept many times in the past, wherein we perform spiritual offerings to Agni Bhagawan (God of Fire). The offerings might be in forms of some “Dhravyas” like ghee, puffed rice, some fruits, etc. As we offer these “Dhravyas” to the “Homa-Kunda” where we lit the Agni, we would see the Agni glowing with a lot of glitter, isn’t it? Sage Paraashara is explaining here that Bhagawan Varaaha had the same glitter of Agni Bhagawan who emerges in full flow from the “Homa-Kunda” and this is where He gets the name called “Yagnya-Varaaha”. 

As he describes thus, Sage Paraashara adds few more points to this – On Bhagawan Varaaha’s divine lotus feet, all the Vedas were residing with loads of glitter and shine. Similarly, Bhagawan Varaaha’s teeth were protruding outside His mouth like a “Sthamba” (A divine long pole that is tied near the Yagnya-Kunda, wherein all the divine Dhravyas are tied to). Sage Paraashara compares Bhagawan’s mouth to the glowing Agni Bhagawan. Just like how Agni Bhagawan would emerge in the form of huge flames from the Homa Kunda, Bhagawan Varaaha’s mouth seems like the flames through which Agni Bhagawan positions himself. Similarly, Bhagawan’s hair strands that were emerging from His divine physical form were like the “Dharba ” grass. Similarly, Bhagawan’s two eyes were so shining in such a way that one eye signified broad daylight and the other eye signified the cool night. This is where, even in the Shri Vishnu Sahasranaama, we have this phrase – “Chandra sooryouscha nethre!” Here, Bhagawan’s two eyes are described as the sun and the moon. That is, one eye of Bhagawan is Bhagawan Soorya (Sun) and the other eye is Bhagawan Chandra (Moon). This is exactly what Sage Paraashara is describing here too. 

Describing thus, Sage Paraashara is now talking about the mammoth size of Bhagawan Yagnya-Varaaha. What would be Bhagawan’s size? Let us wait eagerly till the next episode to understand what Sage Paraashara is going to describe with regards to Bhagawan’s size! Stay tuned! 🙂

Episode # 28 – Can we blame Bhagawan for the mess that we create for ourselves? An important discussion!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed some important characteristics of the “Pralaya Kaala” and how the world would wind up itself when this time comes. We’ve also seen that this “Pralaya Kaala” happens only at the end of Bhagawan Brahma’s life span of around 100 “Satya Lokha years”. This obviously is nowhere close to what we are currently. However, we’ve witnessed the various instances that would take place in this process of “Pralaya Kaala”. We’ve seen how there would be torrential and extreme intense rains, which would go to the extent of dissolving the entire sand, soil, rocks, etc. of the earth surface. In that way, the entire earth surface would get “washed away” in the water, and simultaneously there would be extreme wind and fire, which would ravage the earth from the other side. Thus, this would totally subject the world to a complete destruction and ultimately the entire world would be sucked in by Bhagawan Vishnu, who is also the creator. Thus, once this process happens, everything starts afresh again, and it starts from a seed, to a plant, to an insect, to an animal and finally to a human. This starts again when Bhagawan Brahma would commence his next 100 “Satya Lokha years” of lifespan. Thus, it is a cycle that keeps repeating on and on. 

But amidst all of this, there is a single small, miniscule individual called “Me” or “I” who is reluctant to acknowledge all of this and still wants to be part of this vicious cycle over and over again, without surrendering myself to Bhagawan, to request Him to pull me out of this cycle! This is the greatest irony that people like us are amidst! Rather than requesting Bhagawan to pull us out of this, what do we do? We communicate to Bhagawan through our actions thus, Oh! You know what? I want to experience all the different births and deaths that are to happen to me in this world, for multiple number of years. Who are you to try and liberate me from all of this? I should experience all the “pleasures” of this “Maya”! So what if there are sufferings? I can still brush them aside and go behind worldly pleasures, which would enable me to go through multiple phases of this cycle again and again!” If such is our mindset today, then who can save us, including Bhagawan? Thus, to answer our earlier question – Can everybody get “Moksha” in this world and if everyone gets to that level, what would happen to this world? We can understand from this very accord that unless and until we have “specimens” like this dwelling in this world, Bhagawan has to keep continuing to spin the cycle over and over again. If people are ready to go through the cycle without the desire of liberation, what can Bhagawan do? Bhagawan has given us the “instruction manual” called Vedas, Puraanas, Ithihasas, etc. to make us understand that the ultimate purpose of this human birth is to realize Bhagawan and attain Moksha. Whereas, if we’re not reading through the instruction manuals properly and if we make a mess out of our lives, how will Bhagawan be responsible for the mess that we’re creating for ourselves? 

For instance, if we’re buying any product in the market, every product would come with a “user manual”. If we’re not reading the user manual properly and operate the product, who would be responsible if we get injured, or if the product gets worn out? Can the company be responsible? No, isn’t it? Similarly here also, if we create all the mess that we’re creating, and if we say that Bhagawan is not taking care of the creation properly, how fair is this to squarely put the blame on Bhagawan for what we do? This is where, we need to have the realization that all the scriptural texts under our “Sanaatana Dharma” are the “user manuals” for us given by Bhagawan to channelize our path towards attaining “Moksha”. We’ve to read them and understand them from this point of view, and all other things would fall in place. 

Thus, we had discussed at length, the concept of Time (Kaala), “Pralaya Kaala”, and simultaneously Bhagawan Varaaha’s incarnation to destroy the Raakshasa called Hiranyaksha, to save Mother Earth from his wrath and arrogance. As Bhagawan Varaaha incarnates thus, with His huge form and with the strength of a thousand elephants put together, all the “Maharishis” worship Him with great devotion. This is the first time that Bhagawan Vishnu is incarnating in this world, to re-establish “Dharma”. Of course, during the Krishna – Avatar much later, Bhagawan Krishna explains the purpose behind all His incarnations, isn’t it? So here also, Bhagawan Vishnu re-establishes the lost “Dharma” and destroys the disastrous Hiranyaksha to make sure that the “Adharma” is rooted out completely. 

So for today, let us understand and realize these important points, and we shall wait till the next episode to witness the continuation further. Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 27 – What happens during the “Pralaya-Kaala”? Sage Paraashara details it out!!!

In the previous episode, we had commenced our important discussion on “Time” (“Kaala”) as per Sage Paraashara’s accord to Sage Maithreya. In this, we’ve witnessed how is the calculation performed for the time period of a day, a month, a year, etc. in our “Manushya Lokha” and correspondingly in Bhagawan Brahma’s “Satya Lokha”. We’ve also witnessed the calculation of a “Chatur Yuga” and a thousand “Chatur Yugas” constitute Bhagawan Brahma’s half a day (Day time). Similarly another thousand “Chatur Yugas” constitute Bhagawan Brahma’s another half a day (Night time). Thus, we can witness here that one full day of Bhagawan Brahma is around 87 Lakh years in length, and his lifespan is around 100 such years. It is only after Bhagawan Brahma completes this many number of years, will the world come to an end and a “Pralaya” would occur. 

Thus, we can see here that the entire narrative of “the world coming to an end within the next one or two years” is totally busted with this. We should understand that the world is going to exist continuously, no matter what happens. Even if there is a natural calamity or a pandemic, there might be some form of a small level of destruction, but with this, spreading rumors that the world would come to an end, without any proof and backup is totally unwarranted and is of distaste in the society. 

Saying thus, we might have a question here out of shock – “Oh! So I’ve to exist in this world for this many years?” We’ve witnessed just now that the world is going to exist for millions of years without a destruction and this implies that myself, as an individual also is not subject to any sort of destruction. We’ve witnessed in our previous episodes as to how we do not undergo destruction, but just changes in the states of existence isn’t it? So we might get shell-shocked as to how we live in this world for millions of years! We might be wondering that this one birth itself is such a nightmare to spend in this world, given the innumerable sufferings and heart-breaks that we’ve to undergo at every stage in our life. Also, we should remember that since this is “Kali Yuga”, the sufferings and “Adharma” is only going to increase further and further as days, months and years progress. If this is the suffering that we undergo today, we can imagine how this would be ten years or twenty years or hundred years from now. This is where it becomes extremely necessary for us to “escape” this vicious cycle of birth and death. This is where we emphasize repeatedly that at the end of this birth, we should attain “Moksha” somehow or the other. We should take that effort and try to reach Bhagawan by doing the needful. 

Moving on with the concept of time and creation, Sage Paraashara explains that Bhagawan Vishnu created the “Aakaasha” (Sky) first. From the “Aakaasha” came the “Vaayu” (Wind). From the “Vaayu”, came “Agni” (Fire). From “Agni” came “Jalam” (Water). From “Jalam” came the “Prithivi” (World). Finally, it is in this “Prithivi” that all of us are living currently. As Bhagawan Brahma’s lifetime comes to an end, this entire setup gets destroyed, however, it reappears from the opposite direction. This is where Sage Paraashara explains the characteristics of the “Pralaya Kaala”. He explains here that as the “Pralaya Kaala” commences, the “Prithivi” would start slowly getting dissolved in the water. This means that there would be an extremely intense rainfall. This is not the rainfall that we see today in our world – This rainfall that Sage Paraashara is talking about is so intense that it would start dissolving all the sand and rocks on the earth surface. Thus, we see here that when the world gets destroyed, we go in the reverse direction – We’ve witnessed that the “Prithivi” was formed from “Jalam”, and now the “Jalam” is slowly absorbing the “Prithivi”. Thus, we can see here that all the rocks, sand, mud, etc. would be totally dissolved after the torrential rain and finally everything would become just water. 

As this happens on one front, the other end of the cycle starts in the reverse direction – There would be a blazing fire and wind combination. There would be intense fire and the wind would aid it’s rapid spread. At this time, the fire would be so intense that it would engulf even the water into it! Thus, the water would start “burning” in the fire! We can imagine the level of intensity. At this time, the wind intensity would pick up too. As the wind increases its pace, all of this would be blown away by the wind! Hence, we can see here that the “Prithivi” gets dissolved into the water, the water gets engulfed into the fire, the fire and water together get engulfed by the wind, and this entire thing is sucked up by the “Aakaasha”! Thus, we are witnessing here that the world would become a barren land after all this happens. All this again would be sucked up into the “Ahankaara” of Bhagawan Vishnu and everything would cease to exist. 

So thus, the “Pralaya Kaala” commences and ravages the entire world, at the end of Bhagawan Brahma’s lifespan. Of course, many of these things might be unimaginable to our minds, but this is what Sage Paraashara is explaining! So for today, let us understand these points and wait for the next episode to witness more on this! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 26 – How many years constitute one day of Bhagawan Brahma’s “Satya Lokha”? A simple calculation!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed a detailed accord on how Svaayambhuva Manu continues the job of creation as per Bhagawan Brahma’s instructions. As he keeps continuing with the job, there was a time when the Raakshasa Hiranyaksha comes into action and with his powers, he “hijacks” the entire creation and hides it into the ocean floor! He has now held the entire world to ransom. This is where, Svaayambhuva Manu and Bhagawan Brahma run to Bhagawan Vishnu for a quick intervention and Bhagawan Vishnu immediately responds by incarnating as Bhagawan Varaaha, in the form of a huge pig, which is of the strength of a thousand elephants put together. With this immense strength, Bhagawan Varaaha takes on the Raakshasa Hiranyaksha and finishes him off swiftly. Thus, Bhagawan Varaaha brings all the creation back to its original shape and place. With this, the incarnation of Bhagawan Varaaha comes to an end. 

As this happens, Svaayambhuva Manu and Bhagawan Brahma are pretty much relieved and with this, the job of creation continues further. In the meanwhile, as the creation continues on and on, we’ve to digress a little bit from this and look into the concept of “Time” or ”Kaala” as explained by Sage Paraashara here. In fact, we’ve witnessed a relatively similar accord during our Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana text, wherein Sage Sukhaachaarya gives an account on “Time” and its parameters of measurements. We shall have a “refresher” session here, so that readers who haven’t got a hold of the concept by then, can benefit as well. 

This detail is present in the third Adhyaaya of the first Amsa that we’re discussing here. Now Sage Paraashara explains to Sage Maithreya thus, “Oh Maithreya! Whatever creation that we’ve seen till now – Do you know for how much of time would it exist? Let us keep a simple arithmetic here!” In fact, the arithmetic he’s going to explain here is never going to be simple! It’s going to be a little complicated and we shall see how. I shall try and explain it in a bit of a lucid form for the benefit of our readers. At this point, I would urge readers to take down notes and record it, as it is a complex one to comprehend in the first attempt itself. 

The first unit of classification starts with “Kaata” wherein Sage Paraashara explains that 30 “Kaatas” makeup to one “Kalai”. If 30 such “Kalais” come together, it forms a “Muhurta”. One Muhurta is equal to two “Naazhikas”. Thus, 60 “Naazhikas” combine to form one day. This also implies that 30 “Muhurtas” combine together to form one day. This day is what we calculate as 24 hours in the modern-day procedure. Thus, seven such days would constitute a week. Four such weeks would constitute a month. Six months combine together to form an “Ayana”. This is where we have two “Ayanas” in a year – “Uttharaayana” and the “Dakshinaayana”. This is calculated based on the direction in which the sun moves. Thus, these two “Ayanas” or, twelve months together constitute a year. Similarly, around 43 lakh years constitute to form a “Chatur Yuga”. Continuing with this, a thousand such “Chatur-Yugas” combine to form one “Day-time” for Bhagawan Brahma who resides at the “Satya Lokha”. Similarly, Bhagawan Brahma’s Satya Lokha comprises of the day, month, year, etc. and once Bhagawan Brahma completes 100 such years, the world would come to an end and there would be a “Pralaya”! 

We can thus witness here how “long” is a day for Bhagawan Brahma! From the above calculation, we can witness that Bhagawan Brahma’s one day is around 2000 “Chatur Yugas” long, which in turn comes to around 87 Lakh years, according to the “year” calculation which we have in this world. So if one day takes this much time to get over, we can imagine how long would one year of “Satya Lokha” take to get over, and subsequently 100 years! Thus, we can witness here that the world is never going to end any soon, as being propagated by a few “scary elements” from some corners of the world! So for today, let us understand this basic arithmetic, and as we move into the next episode, we shall witness the continuation of the arithmetic calculations at a more complex level! Stay tuned! 🙂

Episode # 25 – The divine incarnation of Bhagawan Varaaha – Hiranyaksha’s seige comes to an end!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of Sage Paraashara’s accord on “Creation” and how Bhagawan Vishnu is meticulously keeping on creating the world continuously without a break. We had witnessed in yesterday’s episode that Bhagawan Vishnu created the huge and mammoth “Anta-Kataaham” and also Bhagawan Brahma along with it. Thus, after a while, Bhagawan Brahma is entrusted with the job of creation and Bhagawan Vishnu instructs him to continue from where He left. According to that, Bhagawan Brahma is also continuing to create more and more living beings in this world and as this continues, he is feeling tired and fatigued. He feels that he needs somebody to help him out and assist him. For instance, in our case also, if we start doing something mammoth, we wouldn’t be able to do it all by ourselves. We need people along with us to assist us in whatever tasks that we’re doing. This is where in modern day, we call this as a “Team work” or a “Team effort”! Perhaps Bhagawan Brahma knew that this mammoth job cannot be achieved without a “team” of people around him! 🙂

This is where we see the emergence of a very important person called “Svaayambhuva Manu”. Thus, Bhagawan Brahma entrusts Svaayambhuva Manu to continue the job of creation of this world. As Manu was doing thus, Bhagawan Brahma thought that one person isn’t enough and we require more people to be involved in this activity. This is where we have Bhagawan Brahma’s “Manasaputras” (Those who didn’t take a normal human birth, but were born out of Bhagawan Brahma’s thoughts itself) by name “Sanaka” and “Sanatkumara”. As Bhagawan Brahma tries to entrust these “Maanasa Putras” into creation, these two didn’t accept! They simply replied back to Bhagawan Brahma thus, “Please mind your own business!” We see this kind of attitude even in those days! 🙂 This seems nothing new here! If we’re doing the same today, we’ve to assume that such things started right from Bhagawan Brahma’s days! 

However, having said thus, Svaayambhuva Manu came forward and he continued the job of creation. However, as things were progressing, there was a “Raakshasa” who tried to encapsulate the entire creation into a huge “saree-like cloth” and hid it somewhere into the ocean waters! As this unfolded all of a sudden, Svaayambhuva Manu was shell-shocked! He did not know how to retrieve the hidden creations from beneath the ocean floor! He immediately rushes to Bhagawan Brahma to find out a way to retrieve it and continue with the job of creating the world further. As Bhagawan Brahma came to know of Svaayambhva Manu’s challenge, He didn’t know what to do as well! He just replied thus, “Oh Manu! Bhagawan Vishnu had taught me how to create the world, but He didn’t teach me how to retrieve something that gets stolen in this way! So let us go to Bhagawan Vishnu Himself for a solution. He would be the right person to answer this!” 

As Bhagawan Brahma takes the issue to Bhagawan Vishnu, He assures of help – This is where we witness and experience Bhagawan Vishnu’s one of the first incarnations in this world as Bhagawan Varaaha, in the form of a pig. In the meanwhile, the Raakshasa by name “Hiranyaksha” was so notorious that he had the guts to pick up Mother Bhoomadevi from Vaikunta and hide her also into the ocean floor! As this unfolds, Bhagawan Vishnu thinks that He’s had enough and it is time for some action on ground. This is where He takes the first incarnation of Bhagawan Varaaha who was in the form of a pig, which was having the strength of a thousand elephants put together. As Bhagawan Varaaha stretches His muscle thus, He finishes off Hiranyaksha and brings back all the creation from beneath the ocean floor, along with Mother Bhoomadevi and protects all of them together. 

With this accord, Svaayambhuva Manu and Bhagawan Brahma were extremely happy and relieved that the notorious Hiranyaksha is no more! As Bhagawan Varaaha protects and restores the creation thus, Svaayambhva Manu continues his job of creation, as per the instruction of Bhagawan Brahma. In the meanwhile, we’ve to also witness the calculation of “Time” (“Kaala”) which Sage Paraashara is going to explain in great detail. Of course, we’ve witnessed this concept of time in our Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana as well. However, this can be a recollection of whatever we’ve seen earlier, and for new readers, this can be good first-hand information as well! 

So for today, let us celebrate and worship Bhagawan Varaaha’s incarnation and let us wait till the next episode to witness the “Time” calculation in detail! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 24 – Bhagawan Vishnu “CREATES” & “RECRUITS” Bhagawan Brahma to perform the “job” of “Creation”!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed how Bhagawan Vishnu is an “endless” and a “Beginning-less” entity, who is also referred to as “Sathaa eka rupaaya” by Sage Paraashara. Through this phrase, he also reminds us of the fact that since Bhagawan doesn’t have neither a beginning nor an end, His physical form is of a constant one and never changes over time, unlike how our physical forms keep changing every passing day. In due course of yesterday’s episode, we had also witnessed how Bhagawan Vishnu is a “Svatantra” by nature, which means, He is independent of anything and anyone in this world. Whereas, normal human beings like us depend upon so many people for so many things, and ultimately depend upon Bhagawan to shower His grace, so as to attain Moksha. Thus, we are referred to as “Paaratanthryas”, which means, “dependable” in nature. We also clarified in yesterday’s episode how Bhagawan Adisesha, Garuda, etc. who are permanent residents of Vaikunta are also “Paratanthras” by nature, and although they’re at Vaikunta with Bhagawan, they’re all dependent on Bhagawan’s grace to have their permanent residences. 

Moreover, as we move on from here, we’ve to understand one more important point – Just as we said that Bhagawan is “Sadaa eka rupaaya” in terms of physical form, He is “Sadaa eka rupaaya” in His character too! He’s ever compassionate and kind towards all of us, and is waiting for all of us to come to Him. Now if we consider our character and composure, is it going to be the same for two continuous days? Aren’t we getting influenced by our moods and emotions every minute and every second? For instance, we ourselves keep saying thus – “Oh! I met this person yesterday at his house, and he was talking very nicely to me! However, when I met him today on the road, he roared upon me with anger and frustration! I was surprised as to what happened to this person within just 24 hours!” What’s happening here? Our moods and emotions always keep us on our toes, isn’t it? They are inducing constant changes over and over again. These kinds of changes cannot be witnessed in Bhagawan isn’t it? Bhagawan is always compassionate and kind towards all of us, and is ready to forgive and forget all whatever sins that we’re committing in this world, time and again, isn’t it? This is where Bhagawan is referred to as “Sadaa eka rupaaya” = Both in terms of physical and the emotional state. This is an important extension to the above-mentioned point that all of us should clearly understand. 

Explaining thus, Sage Paraashara pays tributes and salutations to Bhagawan Vishnu, who is the ultimate Brahman! Now Sage Paraashara tells Sage Maithreya thus, “Oh Maithreya! So far I’ve explained the process of creation and who is responsible for this. Now we’re going to witness what is “Pralaya” (A sort of destruction). When we look at “Pralaya”, it is a process wherein Bhagawan Vishnu pulls back all of His creation within Himself, at the end of a lifetime!” 

This is a very important point here that we should discuss in detail. But before we go into the “Pralaya” part, we’ve to understand some more things about “Creation” and with that knowledge, we shall go into what is “Pralaya” and how Bhagawan “pulls all of His creation” inside Him again! First of all, as we spoke about “Creation”, we had witnessed that from Bhagawan, all the five different elements (“Pancha Bhootas”) of earth, fire, wind, water and sky are born. Also, the “Karma-Indryas” and “Gnyaana-Indryas” are born from Bhagawan, along with the mind. Thus, if we count all of this, we would get a number – 24. Thus, we can see that Bhagawan is creating 24 different “Achith” items in this world. We mention the terminology called “Achith” here because they are not powerful without a “life”, which is called “Chith”. All of these 24 “Achiths” form a huge creation called “Anda-Kataaham”. It is inside this Anda-Kataaham, is Bhagawan Brahma being inserted. Thus, Bhagawan Vishnu is the person who creates Bhagawan Brahma and He thus entrusts the job of further creation to Bhagawan Brahma. Bhagawan Vishnu tells Bhagawan Brahma thus, “Oh Brahma! I’ve taken enormous pains to create this huge “Anda-Kataaham” and also to create you inside this “Anda-Kataaham”. From now, you take care of the rest of the creation within this Anda-Kataaham. I’ve created all the sense organs, five elements, etc. in this world. Now, your job is to transform all these elements into life and create living beings which would be a combination of these two – The five elements and the sense organs.”

Thus, from this point onwards, Bhagawan Brahma takes up the responsibility of creating the world further, as per the instruction of Bhagawan Vishnu. He starts creating various kinds of living beings in this world. As Bhagawan Brahma creates more and more living beings in this world, he becomes tired and fatigued over time. He thinks within himself that there can be someone who can assist him in this treacherous job of creating the world further and further. Now who comes to the rescue of Bhagawan Brahma? Let us wait till the next episode to find out! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 23 – Bhagawan neither has a beginning nor an end – A permanent entity!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of Sage Paraashara’s accord on the important discussion on “Creation” and “Destruction”. In the due course, we’ve witnessed many points that were part of this discussion, and how Bhagawan is solely responsible for all what is happening in this world. In fact, we’ve also seen some allied points wherein the cycle of creation and destruction just involves changes in states of existence, both for living and non-living beings. Ultimately, the person who is responsible for this change of existing states is none other than Bhagawan Vishnu or, referred to as “Brahman”. In these lines, we witnessed yesterday how Sage Paraashara is describing various attributes of this “Brahman”. We had witnessed this famous sloka that is often chanted along with the Vishnu Sahasranama. For readers’ convenience, we shall have a re-look at the sloka, as we continue with the discussion of the various points that Sage Paraashara intends to convey through this important one. 

“Avikaaraaya shuddhaaya nityaaya paramaatmane! 

Sataika roopa roopaaya vishnave prabha vishnave!!” 

In this, we’ve already witnessed the meaning and significance of “Avikaaraaya”, “Shuddhaaya”and “Nityaaya”. We’ve witnessed how Bhagawan Vishnu is apart from all these components of the “cycle” that we’re talking about. As Bhagawan Krishna Himself mentions in the Gita, there is nothing called “Paapa” or “Punya” or any sort of “Karma” that even comes close to Him! Even though He’s in a human form during all His incarnations, it is not because of the “Karma” cycle. Bhagawan is voluntarily taking the human form and roams around amidst all of us, just out of desire to establish and re-establish the “Dharma” in this world. We’ve also witnessed that Bhagawan doesn’t have a beginning or an end. He’s all-permanent and all-pervasive in nature. Having said all that, these are the key characteristics, based on which we refer Bhagawan Vishnu as the ultimate “Paramatma”. Sage Paraashara himself explains this in the last phrase called “Paramaatmane” in the first line of the sloka. Thus, the point here is that, there is only one “Paramatman” and all the others in this world constitute the “Jeevaatmans”, who are striving to attain the divine lotus feet of the “Paramatman”. 

In fact, this is where the “Alwars” and other “Aachaaryas”, while they sing in praise of Bhagawan Vishnu through various hymns and poetical slokas, practiced something called as “Naayika Bhaava”. Now what is this “Naayika Bhaava”? Normally this is a practice wherein a woman who is love-stricken with her husband or a lover, sings in praise of him, so that she can unite with him with all the love and happiness. Of course, if it is with regards to “Loukeeka” (Worldly) aspect, we refer to it as a category of romance between the boy and the girl. But here, Bhagawan Vishnu is the boy and all the Alwars and Aachaaryas imagine themselves to be the girls who are falling in love with Him! This is “divine love” of the Jeevatmas towards the Paramatman. This is what we refer to as the “Naayika Bhaava” and this is considered to be one of the highest levels of “Bhakti” towards Bhagawan! 

We might ask a question here – Many others like Garuda (Bhagawan Vishnu’s vehicle), Aadisesha (The serpent bed of Bhagawan Vishnu), etc. are all permanent residents of Vaikunta. Will they also be classified as Paramatmans? The answer is “No”! This is because, even though they might be permanent residents of Vaikunta, they are not “Svatantras” (Independents) by nature. All of them are “Paratantras” (Dependents) to Bhagawan. It is like a corporate organization – Just like how many of us (“Paratantras”) work under a leader or a boss (“Svatantra”), Garuda, Adisesha, etc. are all “employee’s” of Bhagawan Vishnu! 🙂 Of course, I’m just mentioning this as a comparison for an understanding purpose, but we cannot literally compare a corporate organization to what happens in Vaikunta any day. Thus, the point here is that, Bhagawan Vishnu, being a “Svatantra” by nature, and who doesn’t depend on anybody else for any of His activities and existence, is referred to as the ultimate “Paramatman”. In fact, there can only be one “Svatantra” in the entire creation, and it is nothing but Brahman. This is why we refer to Bhagawan Vishnu to be a “Paramatman”. 

However, these entities like Garuda, Adisesha, etc. are all referred to as “Muktaatmas”, who are permanent Vaikunta residents, but are all “Paratantras” to Bhagawan Vishnu. We should understand this point very clearly here. Next, Sage Paraashara explains another important point here – “Svataa – Eka Roopaaya” – This means that Brahman is someone who has the same form at all points in time. For instance, if we consider our physical forms, we keep changing every passing minute, hour, day, month, year, etc. isn’t it? Right from the day when we take birth in this world from our mother’s womb, we only keep getting older day by day, and our physical body continues getting worn out, till we die someday, isn’t it? But this doesn’t apply for Bhagawan! Bhagawan never gets old at any given point in time! This is what Sage Paraashara is trying to refer here – There is nothing called as an “Ageing process” when it comes to Bhagawan, as we’ve already discussed earlier too, that Bhagawan doesn’t have a beginning or an end. Only if one has a beginning and an end, will the question of getting old would come, isn’t it? This is where we see that Bhagawan is a constant entity throughout, and is never subjected to getting older at any point in time. 

So for today, let us understand this important point and let us wait till the next episode to witness the continued discussion on this sloka further! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 22 – “Avikaaraaya Shuddhaaya…” – Significance of Bhagawan as “Parabrahman”!!!

In the previous episode, we had continued with the discussion on the important point on “Creation” and “Destruction” and how Bhagawan makes sure that He maintains all our “Karma” accounts properly without any mistake! In due course, we also witnessed how we as human beings in the world are so much carried away by the “Maya” (Illusion) that Bhagawan has created, that we’re unable to prepare ourselves to attain “Moksha”, even if Bhagawan is ready to give it to us! This is where we’ve to realize that it is highly impossible for the entire world to attain “Moksha” at any given point in time, even though Bhagawan is an embodiment of compassion and is ready to offer! All what our limited minds can think is that we’re responsible for whatever happens to us, and Bhagawan is no way connected to whatever happens! Little do we realize that it is Bhagawan who is making the entire world function according to His will and wish! Thus, if we’re able to understand that Bhagawan is behind all whatever is happening to our life, we would automatically surrender to His lotus feet. The problem comes wherein we treat Bhagawna as a “third person”, and as a result, Bhagawan also treats us as a “third person” and keeps waiting till we come to Him! 

Thus, the cycle of creation and destruction keeps continuing on and on, without a break. If we’ve to come out of this spinning cycle, it is upto us to take the effort and approach Bhagawan for the same, with our ardent devotion. So let us understand this point very clearly and let us strive to take this special effort to come out of this vicious spinning cycle of birth and death. 

Thus, this is the broad idea that is being conveyed in the first “Adhyaaya” of the Shri Vishnu Puraana, by Sage Paraashara. To summarize all of it in a nutshell, the entire world is created by Bhagawan Vishnu (“Shrishti”) and it is the same Bhagawan Vishnu who protects whatever He creates it! We should also realize that as human beings who have taken birth in this world, Bhagawan has given us an opportunity to approach Him and through Bhakti, attain Moksha, which would free us from this continuous cycle of birth and death. We should understand this point very clearly as we move on further. 

“Avikaaraaya shuddhaaya nityaaya paramaatmane! 

Sataika roopa roopaaya vishnave prabha vishnave!!” 

Now as we move on further, Sage Paraashara is describing more about the all-pervasive “Brahman”. This is a very important sloka and forms part of our introductory slokas before we chant the “Shri Vishnu Sahasranaama”. “Avikaaraaya” means a person without any blemish. Bhagawan is in no way imperfect in nature. He doesn’t undergo any sort of changes like how the “Jeevatmas” in this world undergo. He is changeless and permanent in nature. Moreover, unlike “Jeevatmas” who undergo cycles of trials, tribulations, happiness, sufferings, etc. Bhagawan is someone who is beyond all of this. He is someone who has transcended all sorts of happiness and sorrow! This is what Sage Paraashara refers to, in the second phrase called “Shuddhaya”. This means that Bhagawan is extremely unperturbed by any happiness or sorrow! He is a “Nityaatma” and is devoid of any such experiences that we undergo in this world. This is the next point that Sage Paraashara is explaining here – “Nityaaya”. He is someone who permanently resides at Vaikunta and never is affected by whatever happens in this world. 

We might ask a question here – Can “Muktaatmas” be classified under “Nityaaya”? We cannot! Because, “Muktaatmas” were also in the world, amidst the cycle of birth and death, before coming to Vaikunta, isn’t it? They were also normal human beings like us, before attaining “Moksha”. Hence, Muktaatmas would not be able to attain the state of “Nityaaya”. Only Bhagawan can fit into this category as He doesn’t experience any sort of “Karma” like how we do. We might again ask here – Oh! Bhagawan repeatedly incarnates in this world as a human being like us – In the form of Bhagawan Rama and Bhagawan Krishna. He also undergoes lot of sufferings, happiness, sorrow, etc. like how we undergo! If that is the case, how can Bhagawan be “Nityaaya”? This is an important question, but we’ve to understand that Bhagawan’s incarnation in this world is not comparable to our birth and death. Bhagawan takes birth in this world, not because of “Karma”, but because of the “Will” to establish Dharma in this world. In fact, Bhagawan Krishna Himself explains in the Bhagawad Gita – “No sorts of “Karma” can even touch me! I take birth in this world not because of Karma, but because of the wish to establish and re-establish Dharma over and over again!” 

This is the difference here – So, even if Bhagawan takes birth in this world, He is still considered as a “Nityaatma”, and not as someone who undergoes happiness, sufferings, etc. due to “Karma”. So for today, let us understand this important point and let us wait till the next episode to continue this important discussion forward. Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 21 – Bhagawan is ever ready to grant us “Moksha”! But… Are we ready for it???

In the previous episode, we had continued with the narration on the “transient” state of this world, wherein all things, irrespective of whether they are living or non-living, undergo changes periodically in their forms. We’ve witnessed in yesterday’s episode how living beings including human beings uundergo this transience, according to our “Karma” that we’ve accumulated. We’ve witnessed how Bhagawan keeps a vigil over what we do in this world, in each of our births, and thus decides the nature of the subsequent births that we’ve to take. In this midst of this is where we go to Bhagawan and surrender to His lotus feet. Once we do that with our whole heart, Bhagawan helps us to relieve ourselves from this transient cycle of birth and death and thus, takes us to “Moksha”. Having said this, it doesn’t mean that once an individual attains Moksha, the entire world would come to a halt. The creation would still continue to happen and at the same time, destruction, which is nothing but the change in states of existence, also would keep happening continuously. It is only that one individual goes out of this cycle. However, we also tried to answer the question that what if all the living beings in the world surrender to Bhagawan and try attaining “Moksha”. This is not an overnight process, given the sheer size of the world and the population of living beings that we’re considering at the global level. Thus, irrespective of whatever happens or not happens, the world is going to continue in existence and creation / destruction processes are going to keep happening unabated. 

Having understood thus, we move on with the next point here. This point is also allied with whatever we’ve discussed till now. As we had mentioned earlier that when one reaches the “Vaikunta” or the “Moksha”, he / she never comes back to this world and is totally devoid of this cycle of birth and death. We’ve witnessed this here, as well as in our previous Shrimad Bhaagawatha Puraana project as well, where Sage Sukhaachaarya is also narrating the same thing. But one thing that we’ve to understand here is that, if an individual has to reach Vaikunta or “Moksha”, it is upto that individual to take the decision to free himself / herself from this cycle and go away forever! This is easier said than done, because how many people in this world would be ready to leave all our so-called “duties” in this world and transcend towards “Vaikunta” immediately? For instance, just let us assume that Bhagawan Krishna is coming in front of us at the moment with all His beauty and charm. He is now talking to us thus. “Oh my little child! My ardent devotee! I’ve seen you suffering for all these days, months, years, etc. in this world with lot of difficulties and sufferings. Now I’ve decided that I’m going to take you with me to “Moksha”! So are you ready to pack your bags and come along with me to Vaikunta?” 

If at all Bhagawan Krishna is going to ask us like this, how many of us would be ready to go along with Him? The sad reality is, very few would be ready! Most of us would immediately reply to Bhagawan thus, “Oh Bhagawan! If you call me all of a sudden like this, how will I be able to come? I have my son, daughter, wife, parents to take care of! I’ve to arrange for my daughter’s marriage. I’ve to find a nice bride for my son! I’ve to take care of my wife and parents till the end! With all these “practical duties” in store, how would I be able to come to Vaikunta with you?” 🙂 This would be our immediate reply! Little would we be able to think beyond that if Bhagawan is calling us to Vaikunta, He would definitely take care of all the others who are associated with us! This is where we lose the plot! Thus, to re-emphasize the fact that even if Bhagawan comes forward to grant us Moksha then and there, we wouldn’t be ready for it, and hence, the cycle of birth and death would always keep continuing! 

Now the question comes – Why are we refusing Bhagawan’s offer? What makes us refuse Bhagawan so flat and blunt? It is because, all of us are stuck in the web called “Maya” or “Illusion”, which is in turn created by Bhagawan only! So the test now for all of us is very clear – Bhagawan’s test here is that, whether are we going to respond to His call immediately or, are we going to get stuck in the “Maya” and delay His offer endlessly? Mostly, all of us are falling into the second category! Else, as a father, why should Bhagawan deny “Moksha” to His own child? Even in our family, will our parents like us to go away from them, even if it is for work or study? For instance, many of us get work and study opportunities at different places in the world, but when we pursue them, we wouldn’t be able to take our parents wherever we go, isn’t it? At that time, when we leave our parents and go outside, do you think that our parents might be happy to let us go? Of course, when it comes to the opportunity, they would be happy obviously. But, when it comes to physical separation from their kids, which parent would be happy to let their son or daughter go away from them? Similar is the case of Bhagawan Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi too – All of us are their children and how can Bhagawan and Devi bear the separation from us? 

Thus, we’ve to understand here that at any point of time, Bhagawan is always ready to grant us “Moksha”. But it is only up to the individual to use this opportunity to ascend towards Bhagawan! So for today, let us understand this point, along with that of creation and destruction, and let us wait till the next episode to continue this discussion further! Stay tuned! 🙂