Sunday, March 13, 2011

Divinity and the child

Divinity and the child
by
Balagangadharanathaswamiji, Adichunchnagiri Math

‘The diet we now feed our children on is terribly deficient in vitamins essential for soul-health.’
These are available in our epics which include the Bhagavadgita. Once again the sara of the
Gita must run through society in everyday life.

Review and Comments
by
R. Ashok Kumar, B.E.,M.E (Power), Negentropist, Bombay Sarvodaya Mandal, 299, Tardeo Road,Nana Chowk, Mumbai-400007.
E-mail: ashokuku@rediffmail.com
© Ramaswami Ashok Kumar
URL: http://vedasandmoderncivilisation.blogspot.com/2011/03/divinity-and-child.html
Keywords: society of specialists, modern civilisation, normal civilisation, relevant education of
the members of society-material and spiritual.

Note: The comments of R. Ashok Kumar are in italics

A child that comes into the world is not a chance; it comes in as a part of a grand cosmic plan. A child is therefore a newcomer that is to be honoured; it has its rights that must not be denied.
A child is a distinguished visitor and an adorable guest, but one who comes to stay and become one of us. It arrives therefore with a sense of belonging, with a charter of ownership.
The soundness of a community can easily be judged from the manner in which it provides for its children. A starved child population is a sure sign of a nation’s decay. A scantily- fed, ill- clothed,uneducated, soul- impoverished child-group is the first sign of a country’s damnation.
A child does not visibly knock, does not audibly ask, does not apparently seek, but its whole being is a ceaseless, though silent demand for the effective granting of its privileges, and the unstinted sanctioning of its rights and the generous satisfaction of its needs.
A child is a citizen of God’s state of the innocents and it cannot put up with any dwarfing of its
citizenship. The Heavenly Father is bounteous in His gifts to the child; He has surrounded the child with colour, smell and delight; He has endowed the child with fancy and imagination; He has infilled the child with poetic vision and a sense of wonder and with the irrepressible desire to reach out and know.
Kamsa and Hiranyakahsyapu are notorious characters in our mythology. Both were the personification of ‘adharma’ (read practitioners of modern civilisation) and both ended in being annihilated by the Lord. Kamsa (Practitioners of the tech innovations like the notorious energy providers and users of to-day-hydro, thermal and nuclear without enjoyable use of living energy, without practicing strict conservation and return) was a child killer. In order to save his own life from a predicted danger, he murdered children, till in the end Lord Krishna brought to an end his demoniacal existence.
Hiranyakashyapu was also a child-killer. However, he did not want to squeeze the life out of every child’s body; but he indulged in the more sinful game of drying up children’s souls(read creating ignorance of true knowledge- that every thing is interconnected with everything else among other truths taught in the Gita). He ordered a recasting of the process of education in his state, by which God was squeezed out of schools, and Hiranya-ism was enthroned. Namo Hiranyaya was substituted for Namo Narayana. And it needed the tremendous soul-strength of Prahalada and the intervention of an especial Narasimha incarnation to save the world from his menace.
Chhatrapathi Shivaji had little of formal education(read specialist rote in a society of specialists), but on his mother’s lap he heard (from Jija Bhai), the exploits of the epic heroes, and founded a kingdom based on righteousness.
Today parental influence at home is in a sad state. And a generation of children is coming up which has not at all heard of our epic characters and our puranic highlights of truth and righteousness. The remedy lies in our opening up the windows of nurseries and schools to the breeze of national religious culture.
The alternative is what we are witnessing today:, Chernobyl, Three Mile Island,
Fukushimas, earthquakes, tsunamies,climate change-to name a few, all man -made disasters. Design made by man only cannot be trusted to return. It is only production, consumption and waste-child-killers, instead of righteousness-production, where it is required, when it is required and returning all that was taken, safely to mother earth.

This is edited and adapted from a version of a discourse which appeared under “Soul Search”
entitled ‘Divinity and the child’ in the print edition of the New Indian Express, Bangalore on 10th
March 2011 authored by Balagangadharanathaswamiji, Adichunchnagiri Math.

Monday, December 3, 2007

The Need to Revive Vedic Teaching in Schools

An ongoing Critique of Dalrymple’s City of Djinns

By R. Ashok Kumar, B.E.,M.E(Power), Negentropist, Bombay Sarvodaya Mandal,299, Tardeo Road, Nana Chowk, Mumbai

William Dalrymple, in his book, City of Djinns- A Year in Delhi, Penguin, 2004, page 192 states of Bernier(Francois Bernier,Travels in the Moghul Empire,1656-68 ed. Archibald Constable,trans.Irving Brock (Reprint edn:Delhi, S.Chand,1972): For all his fropperies, Bernier was very much the educated European of the early Enlightenment: he knew his classics, was a firm believer in Reason, and had no patience with ‘ridiculous errors and strange superstitions’. In particular, like Macaulay two centuries later, he had little time for Brahmins and their Sanskrit learning:

He goes on to quote Bernier specifically:

They believe that the world is flat and triangular; that it is composed of seven distinct habitations….and that each is surrounded by its own peculiar sea; that one sea is of milk; another of sugar; a third of butter; a fourth of wine; and so on…(also that) the whole of this world is supported on the heads of a number of elephants whose occasional motion is the cause of earthquakes. If the renowned sciences of the ancient Indian sages consisted of all these exrtravagant follies, mankind has indeed been deceived in the exalted opinion it has long entertained of their wisdom.

It is important and interesting that Dalrymple mentions also Macaulay(1856) but leaves this hanging without bringing out what the timeless divine Vedas have to say (HP Blavatsky.1877. Isis Unveiled. THEOSOPHICAL UNIVERSITY PRESS PASADENA, CALIFORNIA; Theosophical University Press Online Edition

):

. It is but lately that one of the most zealous Sanskrit scholars, Martin Haug, undertook the translation of the Aitareya Brahmana of the Rig-Veda. It had been till that time entirely unknown; these explanations indicate beyond dispute the identity of the Pythagorean and Brahmanical systems. In both, the esoteric significance is derived from the number: in the former, from the mystic relation of every number to everything intelligible to the human mind; in the latter, from the number of syllables of which each verse in the Mantras consists. Plato, the ardent disciple of Pythagoras, realized it so fully as to maintain that the Dodecahedron was the geometrical figure employed by the Demiurgus in constructing the universe. Some of these figures had a peculiarly solemn significance. For instance four, of which the Dodecahedron is the trine, was held sacred by the Pythagoreans. It is the perfect square, and neither of the bounding lines exceeds the other in length, by a single point. It is the emblem of moral justice and divine equity geometrically expressed. All the powers and great symphonies of physical and spiritual nature lie inscribed within the perfect square; and the ineffable name of Him, which name otherwise, would remain unutterable, was replaced by this sacred number 4 the most binding and solemn oath with the ancient mystics -- the Tetractys.

If the Pythagorean metempsychosis(transmigration and reincarnation of the soul: this URL’s author) should be thoroughly explained and compared with the modern theory of evolution, it would be found to supply every "missing link" in the chain of the latter. But who of our scientists would consent to lose his precious time over the vagaries of the ancients. Notwithstanding proofs to the contrary, they not only deny that the nations of the archaic periods, but even the ancient philosophers had any positive knowledge of the Heliocentric system. The "Venerable Bedes," the Augustines and Lactantii appear to have smothered, with their dogmatic ignorance, all faith in the more ancient theologists of the pre-Christian centuries. But now philology and a closer acquaintance with Sanskrit literature have partially enabled us to vindicate them from these unmerited imputations. In the Vedas, for instance, we find positive proof that so long ago as 2000 B.C., the Hindu sages and scholars must have been acquainted with the rotundity of our globe and the Heliocentric system. Hence, Pythagoras and Plato knew well this astronomical truth; for Pythagoras obtained his knowledge in India, or from men who had been there, and Plato faithfully echoed his teachings. We will quote two passages from the Aitareya Brahmana:

In the "Serpent-Mantra,"* the Brahmana declares as follows: that this Mantra is that one which was seen by the Queen of the Serpents, Sarpa-rajni; because the earth (iyam) is the Queen of the Serpents, as she is the mother and queen of all that moves (sarpat). In the beginning she (the earth) was but one head (round), without hair (bald), i.e., without vegetation. She then perceived this Mantra which confers upon him who knows it, the power of assuming any form which he might desire. She "pronounced the Mantra," i.e., sacrificed to the gods; and, in consequence, immediately obtained a motley appearance; she became variegated, and able to produce any form she might like, changing one form into another. This Mantra begins with the words: "Ayam gauh pris'nir akramit" (x., 189).

The description of the earth in the shape of a round and bald head, which was soft at first, and became hard only from being breathed upon by the god Vayu, the lord of the air, forcibly suggests the idea that the authors of the sacred Vedic books knew the earth to be round or spherical; moreover, that it had been a gelatinous mass at first, which gradually cooled off under the influence of the air and time. So much for their knowledge about our globe's sphericity; and now we will present the testimony upon which we base our assertion, that the Hindus were perfectly acquainted with the Heliocentric system, at least 2000 years B.C.

In the same treatise the Hotar, (priest), is taught how the Shastras should be repeated, and how the phenomena of sunrise and sunset are to be explained. It says: "The Agnishtoma is that one (that god) who burns. The sun never sets nor rises. When people think the sun is setting, it is not so; they are mistaken. For after having arrived at the end of the day, it produces two opposite effects, making night to what is below, and day to what is on the other side. When they (the people) believe it rises in the morning, the sun only does thus: having reached the end of the night, it makes itself produce two opposite effects, making day to what is below, and night to what is on the other side. In fact the sun never sets; nor does it set for him who has such a knowledge. . . ."**

This sentence is so conclusive, that even the translator of the Rig-Veda, Dr. Haug, was forced to remark it. He says this passage contains "the denial of the existence of sunrise and sunset," and that the author supposes the sun "to remain always in its high position."***

[[Footnote(s)]] -------------------------------------------------

* From the Sanskrit text of the Aitareya Brahmanam. Rig-Veda, v., ch. ii., verse 23.

** Aitareya Brahmanam, book iii., c. v., 44.

*** Ait. Brahm., vol. ii., p. 242.

Quote from Isis Unveiled ends.

Thus modern Civilisation is not a normal civilisation. Its adherents write on the basis that history starts with the new man- the colonizer- like the deplorable Macaulay. They used such force as to make unavailable the sara of the Vedas to the commons through traveling educationisists by removing their financial support from the decentralized system of India’s village administrations( The Beautiful Tree: Indigenous Indian Education in the Eighteenth Century by Dharampal(2000);Other India Press,Mapusa403507,Goa, India).

When the school child is asked who found out that the earth goes round the sun it has learnt about Copernicus and Galileo, not a word of our own Vedas.

There is a need to support Vedic studies from childhood on again.

The Solar System (subset)

The National assessment Governing Board(USA) has the following statemenmt:

Earth/Moon/Sun

  • Observable evidence (Patterns of Change)
  • Description and models (Systems, Models)

Students should understand that the apparent daily motions of the Sun, Moon, planets, and stars are due to the rotation of the Earth about its axis every 24 hours. This rotation produces the Earth's night-and-day cycle. They should also understand that the Earth's 1-year revolution around the Sun changes how sunlight falls on one part or another of the Earth because of the tilt of the Earth's axis, thus producing seasonal variations in climate. They should know that the combination of the Earth's motion and the Moon's own orbit around the Earth, once in about 28 days, results in the phases of the Moon.

Science Framework for the 1996 and 2000 National Assessment of Educational Progress

http://www.nagb.org/pubs/96-2000science/append-b.html

8 0 0 N o r t h C a p i t o l S t r e e t , N W , S u i t e 8 2 5
W a s h i n g t o n , D . C . 2 0 0 0 2
P h o n e : 2 0 2 - 3 5 7 - 6 9 3 8