Episode # 562 – It is advisable for the girl’s parents to stay away from their daughter’s personal affairs post marriage!!!

In the previous episode, we had concluded Sage Markandeya’s long accord with Yudishtra and we’ve commenced the next accord on the “Draupati-Satyabhama Samvaadham”. Here, Satyabhama is asking a few questions to Draupati pertaining to the “Pathivrata Dharma” and Draupati is going to give very important and interesting answers. In this way, we’ve seen the first question coming from Satyabhama as to how Draupati is able to keep all her five husbands happy and content at all times. Satyabhama even goes on to ask whether Draupati is employing any “Mantra” or some secretive food tactics to ensure that this happens. However, this question from Satyabhama did not go well with Draupati. She immediately answers back saying that she is not using any “Mantra” or “Yantra” to make this happen, but it is her character and behaviour which satisfies all of them. 

Now this is a very important point that all of us have to understand here – As the English proverb says, “When Character is lost, everything is lost in this world” – This old adage finds perfect application here as well. Of course, when it comes to exhibiting good behaviour and character, it applies not only for the wife, but also to the husband as well. Both of them as a unit should respond to each other’s needs and should ensure that the trust factor is taken care of between them at any point in time. Even though we find Draupati talking about how a woman should exhibit good behaviour and character, it applies to men as well. Respect in a relationship is always two-way and should never be a one-way traffic! So when it comes to a husband and a wife, there should be a great amount of transparency between the couple in all aspects of life, because both of them are living together. If one of them allegedly tries to cheat the other and if the other one finds it out, even if it might be a small thing, the trust factor gets broken. If the trust factor breaks between the couple, it is very difficult to reconcile after that. It is like this – We’re driving our car on a highway at top speed (120 Kmph), with the trust that the braking system of the car is intact. If we find some problem with the brakes, will we even take the car outside our house? The answer is “no”, isn’t it? How can we take a risk if the braking system of the car has a problem? We would only give the car for servicing immediately, or, if the problem is not possible to be sorted out, we would only end up changing the car, isn’t it? This is the similar case when it comes to a couple as well – The relationship goes on very well only with the belief and trust that we have with our spouse. If at some point in time, the trust gets broken, the relationship will crumble, isn’t it? 

This is what modern-day couples should understand at the onset. In the present day, it has become a trend that the wife’s parents (especially the mother) get involved in the personal matters of their daughter after her marriage. We should understand one thing clearly here – When we give our daughter in marriage to another family, she becomes part of another family and is no longer part of our family. This is why we perform the “Kannika-Dhaanam” (Kanya-Dhaan) as part of the marriage ceremony. Of course, I’m not saying that the wife’s parents should completely desert their daughter after marriage. But, there should be a fine balance here – If the husband or the husband’s family members come to know that the wife’s parents are involved too much and poking their nose into unwanted things, the relationship is going to get spoilt. This in turn leads to a lot of cases of young couples going for divorce, or even if that is not the case, people’s relationships get strained and estranged over time. Hence, as parents of daughters, it is always better for us to keep a safe distance from the in-laws after marriage, rather than micromanaging the daughter’s affairs on a daily basis. 

This is not the only complication here – There are many instances wherein the girl’s parents try to dominate over their son-in-law, just to make sure that the son’s parents do not come close to their lives. Even on matrimonial sites, many girls’ families are making it very clear that they do not want “extra baggage” in their daughter’s life to bother her! How pathetic are we getting? Aren’t we realizing that by performing a marriage, instead of growing a family, we’re only ending up destroying families? Why should a man compromise on his parents for his wife who doesn’t cooperate with him in any way? If atleast, just like how the husband’s parents should stay away from them, will the wife’s parents stay away as well? Now this is “Dharma”, isn’t it? If older baggage should stay away from the young couple, the rule should apply to the girl’s parents also, isn’t it? However, this doesn’t apply! The girl’s parents keep coming in every time to poke their noses. However, when the son’s parents come in, they try to create an issue with that! These are no less than pathetic and cheap ways of behaving with the husband, and these are exactly what Draupati is talking about here. 

So the point is very clear – When will mutual respect come? It comes only if we respect each other in an equal manner, and if we pass on that same respect to each other’s family members equally. We should always remember that respect is never one-sided. So for today, let us understand this point very clearly, and let us wait till the next episode to continue this discussion further! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 561 – The “Draupati-Satyabama Samvaadham” – How can a wife make her husband happy?

In the previous episode, we had witnessed a brief accord on how Bhagawan Muruga managed to defeat and kill the Raakshasa Soora-Padma and how He subsequently married Devayani. With this, the divine purpose of Bhagawan Muruga’s incarnation is fulfilled. We’ve witnessed how Bhagawan Muruga obtained the divine “Vel” from His mother, Goddess Parvati, which is a weapon that He used to kill Soora-Padma. The marquee battle took place at Tiruchendur, which is also referred to “Velaa-vanam” in the “Valmiki Ramayana” text. Perhaps, the “Soora-Samhaara” and Bhagawan Muruga’s incarnation took place even before Bhagawan Rama incarnated in this world? This is a very interesting research that we can perform. In fact, even in the Valmiki Ramayana text, we find mention of Bhagawan Muruga. When Sage Vishwamitra was taking Bhagawan Rama and Lakshmana along with him towards Mithilapuri, he was narrating a lot of stories to both of them, as they were children. During this story-telling session, Sage Vishwamitra also talks of how Bhagawan Subramanya (Bhagawan Muruga) was born and what was the divine purpose of His incarnation. Thus, we can find a lot of reference about Bhagawan Muruga, both in the Mahabharata and the Ramayana texts. 

Moving on further thus, we shall now witness the next important conversation here – The conversation between Draupati and Satyabhama. Till now, we had witnessed a detailed accord on Sage Maarkandeya’s explanation on various aspects of “Dharma”, and now we move into the next Upa-Parva here – The “Draupati-Satyabhaama Samvaadha Parva”. After this long accord, Sage Maarkandeya leaves the place with Yudishtra’s and Bhagawan Krishna’s permission, and subsequently, Draupati and Satyabhama are conversing with each other alone. A very interesting thing here is that, Draupati is doing all the talking and Satyabhama is listening to her! It is not the other way round! We might be assuming that in this Parva, we will have Satyabhama explaining something to Draupati, but interestingly this is the other way round! We are going to witness a few questions that Satyabhama is going to ask Draupati and how Draupati answers them. 

Moving on, now let us witness the first question! Satyabhama asks Draupati thus, “Oh Draupati! I’m amazed to see that none of your five husbands get angry on you for anything! How is this even possible? Even with just one husband, in today’s scenario there are a lot of fights that take place between the couple. But here you have five husbands and how come you have all of them under your control? Do you have any “Mantra” for this? Or, do you make sure that the food habits that you maintain with your husband are ensuring this calmness between all of you?” As Satyabhama asks thus, Draupati gets angry for a moment! She replies thus, “Oh Satyabhama! Only if we use all these Mantras and unique food habits to bring husbands under control, there will be so many problems! A woman can only win over her husband through her character and behavior! Nothing else can equal this. Whereas, if a wife uses other ways and means to have her husband under her control, the problems will only exponentially rise, and this will only lead to the husband having permanent doubts over the wife’s activities!”

This is a very important point that Draupati is explaining here – A wife’s noble character and behavior are extremely important to ensure peace and harmony at home! So for today, let us understand this point very clearly and we shall elaborate on this point more in tomorrow’s episode! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 560 – Bhagawan Muruga destroys Soora-Padma at Tiruchendur (Velaavanam)!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of a brief background of Bhagawan Muruga’s “Charitra” as narrated by Sage Maarkandeya to Yudishtra and Co. He is narrating this as part of his long accord on various aspects of “Dharma”, as Bhagawan Krishna too is present amidst the gathering. We’ve witnessed as part of Bhagawan Muruga’s accord as to how He was born, how He had a tiff with his brother, Bhagawan Ganesha and how He renounced His life and went to the “Palani” hills. Subsequently, upon the repeated convincing of Goddess Parvati Devi, Bhagawan Muruga returned back to Kailash to reunite with Bhagawan Shiva and Bhagawan Ganesha. Subsequently we’ve also witnessed the “Pranava Mantra” fiasco and how even Bhagawan Shiva did not have a clue about it and its significance. After a long tiff, Bhagawan Muruga performed the sacred “Upadesham” (Teaching) by playing a role as the Guru or Spiritual Master to none other than His father, Bhagawan Shiva Himself! This happened at the place called “Swamimalai” near the temple town of Kumbakonam in the Indian State of Tamil Nadu. 

Subsequently as we move on further from this, there are many more things that Sage Maarkandeya explains about Bhagawan Muruga, and he comes to a point wherein the Raakshasa “Soora-Padma” is growing quickly. He is trying to take all the Devas including Indra into ransom and is torturing the entire world with his evil deeds. Bhagawan Muruga comes to know of it and decides to put an end to Soora-Padma. Meanwhile, Bhagawan Muruga provides His divine Anugraha to the great Tamil poet – “Avvayyar”, whose hymns are famous even today in the Tamil literature. Subsequently, Bhagawan Muruga plays a divine “Leela” to marry a woman by name “Valli”. Subsequently, the time comes for Bhagawan Muruga to wage a battle with Soora-Padma. The marquee battle happens at the place called “Tiruchendur”, which is a coastal temple town in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu, near to Tutucorin. Interestingly, this place called “Tiruchendur” finds a mention in the Valmiki Ramayana as well. At a time when all the Vaanaras including Hanuman and the others were trying to build the famed “Ram-Sethu” bridge to cross over to Lanka, this is the place where all the thousands of Vaanaras had assembled. The Valmiki Ramayana mentions this place as “Velaavanam”. Since this name has the term “Vel”, which is the weapon used by Bhagawan Muruga to kill Soora-Padma, perhaps this place had obtained the name “Velaavanam”. This is just my guess, and I do not have any research to back this up. Maybe in future if I come across something, I shall share it! 🙂 

Coming back to the context thus, the marquee battle is about to begin between Bhagawan Muruga and Soora-Padma. Before going for the epic fight, Bhagawan Muruga worships His mother, Goddess Parvati, who provides her divine “Anugraha” to her son in the form of the “Vel”, which is a powerful weapon. Bhagawan Muruga obtains it and fights a long battle with Soora-Padma. This war happens on the shores of the ocean and finally, with the divine “Vel” weapon, Bhagawan Muruga cuts Soora-Padma into two halves – One half manifests into a peacock and the other half manifests into a cock. Thus, with this, Bhagawan Muruga destroys the evil and restores the “Dharma” in the world. Indra and the others are also freed from their imprisonment. This is the very purpose of Bhagawan Muruga’s incarnation, and subsequently He marries “Devayani” also. 

So for today, let us understand these important points pertaining to Bhagawan Muruga and let us also try to visit the places that I had mentioned earlier today and in the previous episodes as well – Swami-Malai, Tiruchendur, Palani, etc. There are many more such important “Kshetras” which are dedicated to Bhagawan Muruga, which we should also try and visit whenever we get time! We shall wait till the next episode to move on further with Sage Maarkandeya’s accord! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 559 – Bhagawan Muruga teaches the “Pranava Mantra” to Bhagawan Shiva!!!

In the previous episode, we had commenced witnessing the background of Bhagawan Skandha (Bhagawan Muruga) as being narrated by Sage Markandeya to Yudishtra and Co. Of course, this is a long accord, but we shall keep it a bit short as we move on. We’ve witnessed yesterday as to how Bhagawan Muruga was born as six babies and how the “Karthigai” women took responsibility to bring up the six babies with utmost love, respect and care. The “Karthigai” women knew that these six babies are of Bhagawan Shiva and Goddess Parvati Devi and hence, they made sure that all of them are well taken care of! Finally after a point, Bhagawan Shiva united all the six babies into one – Whom we worship as Bhagawan Muruga. As the unison happened, Bhagawan Muruga had six faces united in one single body, and hence he is worshipped as Bhagawan Aarumuga (In Tamil, Aaru means six and Muga means face). Bhagwan Muruga, as He was growing up, entered into a contest with His brother, Bhagawan Ganesha as to who will be the first one to circle around the world! Of course, Bhagawan Ganesha claimed victory in a “smart” way, which did not go well with Bhagawan Muruga. Hence, Bhagawan Muruga became furious and “quit” His home! He walked with anger towards the “Palani” hills in Tamil Nadu and stood there!

However, with the repeated convincing of Goddess Parvati who is His mother, Bhagawan Muruga once again came to terms and accepted to return back to Kailash. Goddess Parvati explains to Her son that this is just one among many divine “Leelas” (Plays) of Bhagawan Shiva and there’s nothing to worry about. This calmed down Bhagawan Muruga and He returned to Bhagawan Shiva’s abode. Later on, there was a fierce argument between Bhagawan Muruga and Bhagawan Shiva. Of course, Bhagawan Muruga was still a little boy at this time as well, and at one point during the argument, Bhagawan Muruga asked His father whether He has any idea or knowledge on the “Pranava Mantra” that rules the entire world. Shocked by this question from His son, Bhagawan Shiva stammered for an answer! At that point in time, He did not know the “Pranava Mantra” that governs the entire world! Seizing this opportunity, Bhagawan Muruga declared to the world that His father is useless! How can someone be the leader of the world who doesn’t even know what the “Pranava Mantra” is? Hence, Bhagawan Muruga decided to rule the roost! 

Now He goes around questioning Indra and the others with the same “Pranava Mantra”, and to everyone’s surprise, nobody had an answer to what Bhagawan Muruga was asking! Hence, Bhagawan Muruga started imprisoning Indra and the others for the lack of this basic knowledge! As this was going on and on and as Bhagawan Muruga’s fury was on the rise, Bhagawan Shiva decided to intervene. Of course, this is also one of Bhagawan Shiva’s divine “Leela” (Play) and He proposed to His son that He will be the disciple and His son will be the Guru. Bhagawan Shiva decided to learn the significance of the “Pranava Mantra” from His own son, Bhagawan Muruga. As Bhagawan Shiva comes up with this proposal, Bhagawan Muruga accepts it, and the place where this teaching happens is even today worshipped as “Swami-Malai”. This is one of the most important places of worship for Bhagawan Muruga, situated in the South-Indian State of Tamil Nadu, near the temple town of Kumbakonam. Here we shall be able to worship Bhagawan Shiva sitting down on the floor and Bhagawan Muruga seated on an “Aaasana” in the “Guru-Sishya Bhaava”! Bhagawan Muruga is teaching the “Pranava Mantra” to Bhagawan Shiva. 

Now what is this “Pranava Mantra” that Bhagawan Muruga is talking about for all this while? It is nothing but the Mantra called “OM”. This is the universal “Mantra” or the sacred syllable from which the entire world took birth and hence, it is called the “Pranava Mantra”! This is exactly what Bhagawan Muruga teaches Bhagawan Shiva at the Swami-Malai Kshetra. So for today, let us understand up to this point, and we shall wait till the next episode to witness the continuation of Bhagawan Muruga’s interesting “Charitra” forward. Stay tuned for an interesting accord! 🙂 

Episode # 558 – The divine incarnation of Bhagawan Muruga (Skanda-Puranam)- Sage Markandeya explains!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed Sage Maarkandeya concluding the discussion on the meat vendor and how he is explaining very important points pertaining to “Dharma” along with Sage Kaushika. Of course, it is not that Sage Kaushika doesn’t know what the meat vendor knows. Sage Kaushika indirectly wants all the aspects of “Dharma” to come out of the mouth of the meat vendor because, he is a common man, unlike Sage Kaushika, who is a Maharishi. Therefore, instead of a Maharishi explaining the various aspects of “Dharma”, the impact would be more if a meat vendor explains them. Thus, with this, Sage Maarkandeya moves on with the next part of his discussion, which is quite a long one here. This is about Bhagawan Skandha (Bhagawan Muruga), how He was born and the purpose of His incarnation in this world. 

Once upon a time, Goddess Parvati Devi and Bhagawan Shiva were together and they wanted a baby. At this time, Bhagawan Ganesha was already there as their first child and after a few years, they wanted their second son for a specific purpose. There was a Raakshasa by name “Soora-Padma” who was wreaking havoc in this world. Nobody, including the Devas were able to defeat him and with this, he had captured Indra and Co. and was torturing them. At this point in time, all the Devas went to Bhagawan Shiva and asked for a solution. Hence, Bhagawan Shiva and Goddess Parvati decided that they would have a son, who will be the person to destroy this Soora-Padma. However, as both of them were together, the “Garbha” in which the child was growing was somehow stolen by Agni Bhagawan and Mother Ganga, and hence, six children were born out of it. Subsequently, as six children were born, a group of “Karthigai” women adopted them and were bringing them up with great love and care. They knew that these six children were divine incarnations and with this, they poured all their love and respect to them. After some years, Bhagawan Shiva understood what was going on and with His divine “Anugraha”, all the six children were united into one child! This child was none other than Bhagawan Muruga. 

Bhagwan Muruga is a very famous deity in South India, who is worshipped in different names – Bhagawan Skanda, Bhagawan Kaarthikeya (Since He was brought up by the “Kaarthigai” women as we’ve seen earlier), Bhagawan Aaru-Muga (Since He had six faces), Bhagawan Kumara (Since He is worshipped as a little boy), etc. As Bhagawan Muruga was growing up, as many of us might know, there was a competition between Bhagawan Ganesha and Bhagawan Muruga as to who will complete one full revolution around the world. Bhagawan Ganesha was smart enough to circumvent his own parents (Bhagawan Shiva and Goddess Parvati) and proclaimed that he had completed the task successfully, since circumventing both of them is equivalent to circumventing the whole world! Bhagawan Shiva and Goddess Parvati were convinced with the explanation given by Bhagawan Ganesha and it was declared that He had won the contest! However, Bhagawan Muruga was literally going around the world in His peacock (Divine Vaahanam of Bhagawan Muruga) and when He finally came back, He saw that His brother had been declared the winner! Getting angry over the foul game that his brother had played with him, Bhagawan Muruga decided to “quit” his home by abandoning his parents and his brother! He walks away to a small cliff even though his parents and his brother requested him to stay back! But Bhagawan Muruga had made up his mind firmly! He’s not going to come back again so easily! 

Little boy as he was, Bhagwan Muruga was deeply hurt by this “foul game” and the small cliff over which he went and stood, is today known as “Palani”, which is one of the six important temples for Bhagawan Muruga today. Palani is amidst the Western Ghats in the South-Indian state of Tamil Nadu and is a very famous Muruga Temple, worshipped by thousands of people. So for today, let us understand up to this point, and we shall continue this story narrated by Sage Maarkandeya in the next episode as well! Stay tuned! 🙂 

Episode # 557 – The meat vendor explains his past background to Sage Kaushika!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the meat vendor explaining how the “Satva Guna” in all of us can be identified and measured. He explains that if we’re high on the “Satva Guna”, it will manifest in the form of having a clear mind with the highest level of thought clarity. Also, the way in which we behave politely with others, our positive attitude towards whatever we do, etc. indicates that our “Satva Guna” is on the higher side. However, this is not to discount the fact that the other two Gunas, namely the “Rajo Guna” and the “Tamo Guna” would be completely absent. This cannot be possible for normal human beings like us. Our ‘Rajo Guna” and “Tamo Guna” have certain time periods of the day when they would dominate, however, it is up to the individual to keep both these “Gunas” under check and control. Saying thus, the meat vendor takes Sage Kaushika to his home and introduces him to his parents. He explains how he is of selfless service to both his parents at all times. 

Moving on thus, the meat vendor explains his past background to Sage Kaushika here. He says thus, “Oh Sage Kaushika! In my previous birth, I was a great Brahmin pandit and I was meticulously performing the ‘Veda-Adhyayanam’. However, my friendship spoiled my life. I was friends with a hunter in my nearby locality and one day he had invited me for a hunting spree. Even though I should not have accompanied him for that hunting spree, I did! This is my fate! Even as I went, did I go empty handed? No! I took a bow and arrow and went along with my friend! As both of us were going deep into the forest, there was a dangerous animal that came our way. Sensing the danger, I took out my bow and arrow and hit the animal to death! Unfortunately, that animal was a great sage! He was in the form of that animal and he had come in front of us! Not realizing this, I hurt that sage with my sharp arrows! As I hit that Maharishi, he immediately fumed with anger and cursed me thus, “Oh! You’re seeming to be a Brahmana Rishi and you’ve come on a hunting spree? You shouldn’t have done this! Hence for the crime that you’ve committed, you will immediately go and be born as a meat vendor and keep selling the same kind of meat amidst people who are highly ignorant about spirituality and spiritual development!” As I heard this curse from the Maharishi, I was shocked! I immediately fell on to his feet and seeked unconditional apology for my mistake. However, since the curse was given already, it couldn’t be retaken! But, the Maharishi said thus, “Oh Brahmana! Even though you would be born as a meat vendor, you would be enriched with a lot of “Satva Guna” and with an enormous spiritual development. I acknowledge your apology and hereby change the course of my curse!” As the Maharishi said thus, I was born as a meat vendor and here I am in front of you – Even though I’m a meat vendor, my “Satva Guna” is high, because in the past I was also a Brahmana Rishi like how you are!” 

Saying thus, the meat vendor also expresses his thoughts to Sage Kaushika thus, “Oh Sage Kaushika! I know that you are not asking all these questions to me because you do not know anything. I know that you’re wanting to bring these words of wisdom from my mouth, so that many other people in the future can mend their ways upon listening to my words. Hence, Sage Kaushika! Thank you for this golden opportunity to highlight to the world the importance of the “Dharma” of taking care of parents at their old age!” As the meat vendor says thus, Sage Kaushika too acknowledges his words and provides his divine “Anugraha” to him as he too moves on. With this, we come to the end of this important “Charitra” which Sage Maarkandeya is explaining to Yudishtra and the others! So for today, we shall understand these points and let us wait for the next episode to witness the next important and a long “Charithra” – The history of Bhagawan Skandha (Bhagawan Muruga)! Stay tuned for an interesting accord! 🙂 

Episode # 556 – How do we understand whether our “Sathva Guna” is on the rise? – The meat vendor explains!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the importance of “Saathvika Aahaaram” and how it is essential for our spiritual progress. We witnessed this point through the words of the meat vendor who is talking with Sage Kaushika on various aspects of “Dharma” – specially the “Dharma” of taking care of our aged parents. As an offshoot, we’ve also witnessed how it is important to stick to our duty which is allotted to us by Bhagawan, but at the same time, the duty should not consume us completely. This is exactly we’re seeing here in the case of the meat vendor – Although his duty is to sell meat, he is not getting consumed by it, in the sense that, he is not getting tempted to eat the meat that he is trying to sell. Thus, the meat vendor clearly knows that the meat that he is selling is never a “Saathvika Aahaaram” and if he consumes it, he will deteriorate in terms of spiritual growth and development. This is an important eye-opener for all of us here – If by any chance we’re under the habit of consuming non-vegetarian food, we should try and come out of it, if we’ve to attain spiritual progress. Thus, “Saathvika Aahaaram” will give us that ample motivation and will serve as a way to control our mind in terms of running behind unwanted desires. 

Moving on thus, Sage Kaushika asks the meat vendor the next question here – “Oh Meat Vendor! You’re talking so much about the “Sathva Guna” which seems to grow with your “Saathvika Aahaaram”. How do you understand for yourself whether your “Sathva Guna” is on the rise? How do you understand that the “Rajo Guna” and the “Tamo Guna” are not on the rise?” The meat vendor replies thus, “Oh Sage Kaushika! It is very simple – I observe myself everyday. I observe my behavior, my day-to-day working attitudes, etc. In this, I can declare to myself that my mind is calm, and my patience and tolerance levels are very high. All these are indications that my “Sathva Guna” is very high. If my anger, unwanted desires, temptations, etc. are on the rise, it simply would imply that my “Rajo Guna” is increasing. In similar lines, if my laziness, dejection, dull feeling, confusion, lack of concentration and interest in doing anything, etc. are increasing, it is evident clearly that my “Taamasa Guna is rising! Thus, these are the basic parameters with which we can observe to ourselves, whether we are on the right track. If spiritual development has to happen, definitely our “Sathva Guna” should be on the rise, and the other two “Gunas” should be on the decline! Thus, we can say here that the “Sathva Guna” implies clarity of mind and unending happiness. Similarly, the “Rajo Guna” implies anger, tension, attitude issues, unwanted desires, etc. and the “Tamo Guna” implies excessive laziness, sleep, lack of concentration, etc. Of course, you might ask me another follow-up question here – How can you say that your “Sathva Guna” is dominating in you? How come the other two “Gunas” can completely be zero? Is it possible for a normal human being? My answer to it is very simple – Of course not! All of us have certain elements of “Rajo Guna” and “Tamo Guna” in all of us. It depends on so many factors like the timing of the day. For instance, during the early morning hours after we wake up, our “Sathva Guna” should be very high, because our mind is calm after a good night’s sleep! In similar lines, as we progress through the day, we encounter so many things, wherein our “Rajo Guna” will rise. However, during the end of the day when we go to bed, we are tired after a long day’s work, and with this, our “Tamo Guna” is on the rise. Thus, it is only because of our “Tamo Guna”, we go to sleep during the night. 

Thus, we can see here that all the three “Gunas” are present in everybody!  However, the question here is very simple – Which “Guna” dominates the other? How do we ensure that the “Sathva Guna” is the one which is dominating the other two at all times? This is where we should obtain the “Atma-Gnyaanam”. Once we’re obtaining this through a lot of spiritual practices, our “Sathva Guna” would automatically rise! This is how our great Maharishis have progressed to high levels of spiritual development. This is what the Maharishis have propagated to all of us as well!” Giving a detailed reply thus, the meat vendor explains the significance of taking care of the aged parents and the “Dharma” behind it. So for today, let us understand these points and let us wait till the next episode to witness what the meat vendor is going to say next! Stay tuned! 🙂 

“THE INDIAN DHARMA” blog nears 2.5 lakh viewership!!!

Dear esteemed readers,

As we progress with our flagship and very important project, The Mahabharata, we’ve started receiving a tremendous response from all our readers. We’ve done 555 episodes till date and with this, we’ve almost completed a jist of the entire Mahabharata story as narrated by Sage Vyaasa. At this juncture, I’m elated to share the following details with all of you.

A staggering increase in viewership –“The Indian Dharma” has crossed a viewership milestone of over 2,41,000 across 120 countries worldwide! The year 2022 alone we’ve crossed a milestone viewership of around 63,000 from all across the globe! This in itself speaks volumes of the global reach that our “Sanaatana Dharma” possesses! Of course, this has come along with the constant support and feedback from our esteemed readers from various parts of the globe. My humble gratitude to all of you!

As we move forward with our endeavour thus, I solicit the cooperation and guidance from all our readers in making this a great learning experience for all of us together!

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Once again, my sincere thanks and gratitude to all readers across thr world, and with Bhagawan’s divine grace, let’s continue with our “Mahabharata” journey further and take our learning’s to greater heights!

Episode # 555 – “The nature of food we consume determines what kind of a person we are” – An important thought!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of our discussion on why we should try and avoid non-vegetarian food consumption as much as we can. We had been witnessing this narrative as part of the meat-vendor’s explanation of his “Dharma” to Sage Kaushika that even though he sells meat himself, he makes it a point not to consume it because he is walking the spiritual path. This prevents him from consuming non-vegetarian food because he realizes that Bhagawan resides in the hearts of all living beings. Of course, he continues his profession of killing animals to prepare the meat, because of his fundamental duties that he has to perform as part of his daily survival. However, he does it with detachment and this is something that is important for all of us. Hence, we should make sure that we follow the practice of abstaining ourselves from consuming non-vegetarian food, as we’re now walking the path of spiritual growth and development. Ultimately, we should remember here that we do not have any right to deny the fact that every living being wants to lead a peaceful and a happy life in their own respective capacities. If we’re not able to make our fellow living beings happy with some contributions, atleast let us not harm them and create an immeasurable pain in their lives. This is the basic that Bhagawan expects out of us. 

Moving on further, we are discussing many other allied points with regards to our food habits, and today, we’re going to witness yet another important point here – The nature of food that we consume is going to determine what kind of a person we are. For instance, in this context, if we’ve to walk the path of “Bhakti” and spiritual growth, “Saathvika Aahaaram” is very important. “Saathvika Aahaaram” is nothing but a package of food which is devoid of too much spice, too much sweet, too much sourness, too much bitterness and completely devoid of food that is prepared out of inflicting pain to other living beings. In English, we call this as a “Balanced Diet”, wherein with regards to the nutrient part, the food should cover everything that the body requires for effective functioning, and at the same time, these nutrients should come through sources that are sustainable and not through destruction. Hence, the concept of “Balanced diet” is nothing but “Saathvika Aahaaram”. Moreover, as per our “Sanaatana Dharma” literature, there is a mandate that we fast on certain days without consuming food or water. There are certain days of the month like “Ekaadasi”, wherein many of us undertake fasting practices as part of our spiritual development. Actually, fasting is an excellent practice as it gives a break to our stomach and the related digestion processes that are associated with it. Fasting gives an opportunity for the body to cleanse and flush out all the unwanted contents through the intestines. Thus, scientifically too, fasting has a lot of significance. Moreover, in the spiritual sense, fasting gives us “Vairagya” (Self-control and will-power) to withstand any kind of adverse situations in life. Thus, this fasting process also forms part of the “Saathvika Aahaaram”. 

Thus, if our “Aahaaram” (Food) is “Saathvik” in nature, automatically our mind and brain will function in a systematic and a constructive manner, which is essential for spiritual growth and development. Explaining all these points to Sage Kaushika, the meat vendor says thus, “Oh Sage! Given all these aspects of “Dharma” with respect to food, I’m following all these without any blemish. Of course, I’m cutting and selling meat, which is my generational job profile. My father, grandfather, etc. had been doing it for many years and I’m just continuing my family business. Hence, there is no fault in this activity according to me!” Saying all these, the meat vendor now takes Sage Kaushika to his home. As both of them reach home, the meat vendor falls on the feet of his aged parents and explains to Sage Kaushika thus, “Oh Sage Kaushika! This is the secret behind my “Dharma”! I’m every day rendering selfless service to my parents who are sitting here. I’m of help to them in whatever way possible and this “Dharma” of mine is what is protecting me at all times!”

As the meat vendor explains thus, Sage Kaushika is extremely impressed and happy. However, he asks one more important question here to the meat vendor thus, “Oh meat vendor! I’m extremely impressed with the way how you are of service to your parents! Not many of them do this today and we see this “Dharma” aspect deteriorating with time. However, you seem to be an epitome of it. I see that you’re an embodiment of “Sattva Guna” as well. But tell me one thing – The nature of the job that you do everyday in your shop has the mighty potential to invoke a lot of “Rajo-Guna” and “Tamo Guna” into you. However, you’re able to keep all of that away and you’re able to enhance your “Sattva Guna” to a great extent! How is this possible for you? Can you explain to me?” 

As Sage Kaushika asks thus, the meat vendor is going to give an important answer. So for today, we shall understand up to this point and we shall wait till the next episode to witness the meat vendor’s perspective on this important question. Stay tuned for more updates! 🙂 

Episode # 554 – As Bhagawan’s ardent “Bhaktas”, we shouldn’t consume non-vegetarian food – An important thought!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed how refraining from non-vegetarian food consumption helps us in our spiritual growth and development. We’re witnessing this point as a narrative that the meat vendor gives to Sage Kaushika, which in turn is being narrated by Sage Maarkandeya to Yudishtra and Co. with regards to various aspects of “Dharma”, especially the “Pathivrata Dharma” and the “Maata-Pita-Sushrusha Dharma”. As Sage Kaushika questioned him on why the meat vendor refrains from consuming the meat that he sells, the meat vendor gives an important reply that he knows his “Dharma” of not consuming meat, as it gives a lot of negative vibrations, which is detrimental for spiritual growth. However, he sells it because it is the profession that he had to inherit for a long time, and this is something that Bhagawan had destined for it. Moreover, the meat vendor explains that he is selling the meat to those who do not realize this important aspect of spiritual development. In these lines, we witnessed in yesterday’s episode as to why it is important for us to avoid the consumption of non-vegetarian food, as it only ends up increasing our “Taamasa Guna”, which is laziness and dull feeling. Hence, readers should give this point a due thought as we progress further. 

Moving on thus, we might have a question here – Oh! If it is the case that we should not consume non-vegetarian food, isn’t it only for the Brahmins? We might be belonging to the Kshatriyas, or Vaishyas or any other community or religion too. These things might not be applicable to people like us, isn’t it? Now let me give a simple answer here – The moment we transform ourselves into “Bhaktas” (Ardent devotees) of Bhagawan, we should stop consuming non-vegetarian food, irrespective of whoever we are and from what community we come from! It is not different for different people. As I’ve mentioned earlier as well, all the four “Varnaashrama Dharmas” are equal and there is no high or low in this. Of course, I accept that it is a mandate for Brahmins to not consume non-vegetarian food, however, if other people are slowly transcending into the spiritual path, we too should refrain from consuming it. For Bhagawan, the “Bhakta” is important, and not the community from where the Bhakta comes from. Hence, whatever rule applies for a “Bhakta”, will apply for all the Bhaktas from all communities and religions. There is thus no difference here! Hence, people from any Varnaashrama Dharma will keep consuming non-vegetarian food, but once we start obtaining spiritual awareness, we should consciously strive to come out of this practice. 

Moreover, there is a “Dharma” for the Kali Yuga, isn’t it? For example, in the previous Yugas, a man was marrying multiple women and making them as his legal wives. However, in this “Kali Yuga”, can this be in practice? We will certainly not accept it, will we? Also, in those previous Yugas, even Brahmins were consuming non-vegetarian foods, and there are references for the same in our Sanaatana Dharma. However, they were able to attain “Moksha”, even though they had this practice. However, with regards to non-vegetarian food, it is the “Dharma” of Kali-Yuga that we as ardent “Bhaktas” of Bhagawan and as ardent followers of our “Sanaatana Dharma”, we should refrain from consuming non-vegetarian food. Hence, as per the “Dharma” of the present Kali-Yuga too, it is justified for Bhaktas to not consume these kinds of food. We should understand that it is the same Bhagawan who is dwelling in our hearts, dwells in the hearts of those living beings as well. So, by killing and consuming those living beings, aren’t we harming Bhagawan as well? We should think about this! 

Moreover, we might ask another question here – “Oh! We are not killing the animal / living being which we’re consuming, isn’t it? Somebody else is killing it and making a meal out of it for us! What is the problem if we’re consuming it?” I agree with this. However, the bigger question here is, who is consuming it! The point here is that, when we consume the killed body of an animal, it comes along with the bad vibrations. Hence, we’ve to be careful here. So for today, let us understand this point clearly and we shall wait till the next episode to witness the continuation of this discussion forward! Stay tuned! 🙂