Friday, October 31, 2008

Miracle of Life

Look at the beauty of the fold of the rose petals or the perfect geometry of the Nautilus shell in the accompanying picture. There is a mathematical precision. Most of these spirals we see in nature follow what is known as the Fibonacci spiral based on the discovery of the mathematical series by an Italian monk called Leonardo Fibonacci in the twelfth century.

We are discovering that creation is full of precision that defies reason. This is the reason why Darwin’s theory of natural selection is facing increasing pressure and we are now looking at a scenario where we see an implicate order at work. After David Bohm, who came up with this concept in explaining the principle behind perceived reality as emanation from implicate order, many others have followed this line of thinking in other fields of science such as Biology. One scientist who has used this concept in plant biology is Dr. Rupert Sheldrake of Cambridge University.

Recent discoveries have pointed out the extreme complexity of the human species. We are made up of nearly 100 trillion cells, more than the stars in the Milky Way galaxy. Each cell is a living organism of high complexity. 10 million cells die and regenerate every second of our life. Skin cells live only for two weeks and bone cells live for three months. Every ninety seconds millions of antibodies are synthesized, each from about twelve hundred amino acids.

We are not just flesh and bones but a highly evolved system whose order is mind boggling.
We are a walking miracle and this is resonated in Aurobindo’s poem:

My breath runs in a subtle rhythmic stream;
It fills my members with a might divine:
I have drunk the Infinite like a giant’s wine,
Time is my drama or my pageant dream.
Now are my illumined cells joy’s flaming scheme
And changed my thrilled and branching nerves to fine
Channels of rapture opal and hyaline
For the flux of the unknown and the supreme
I am no more a vassal of the flesh,
A slave to nature and her leaden rule;
I am caught no more in the senses’ narrow mesh.
My soul unhorizoned widens to measureless sight,
My body is God’s happy living tool,
My spirit a vast sun of deathless light.

Love to you all

Monday, October 27, 2008

Lessons from My Mother

"Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;
For those whom thou think'st thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleep, which but thy pictures be,
Much pleasure; then from thee much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee do go,
Rest of their bones, and soul's delivery.
Thou art slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell;
And poppy or charms can make us sleep as well
And better than thy stroke; why swell'st thou then?
One short sleep past, we wake eternally,
And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die."
………….. A sonnet by John Donne

On 16th October 2008, my mother completed her earthly life after 88 years of yeoman service to thousands of individuals, which extended form the immediate family to many individuals who came into her life as a husband, mother, care giver and, in the last five years of her life, to the many nurses who attended her. She was a person beyond narrow dictates of caste, creed or colour.
She was not of a high education but always open to ideas and knowledge. Though she was a person of deep and unshakable Christian faith, she was open to deeper interpretation of many dogmatic dictates of the Catholic faith and the events in the Bible. Whenever I had given a talk or a seminar, she was keen to know the contents and listen to the stories I had used in my deliberations and ask for its moral in the context of the subject being addressed.

In the past few years I had a wonderful spiritual relationship with my mother. Everyday we used to sit for evening prayers which always ended in reading the Bible and she expected me to explain the deeper meanings of the words of the Old Testament prophets, wisdom of Jesus and letters of Paul. I used to refer to parallel meanings in Bhagawat Gita, Upanishads, teachings of Buddha and other spiritual leaders.
You could see her eyes light up and mind focused and there was a great feeling of someone present who is being filled with renewed energy. Even on days when she had excruciating pain, she would never miss the evening spiritual dialogue and singing.

She was in constant preparation for the end of her earthly journey. She was a personification of the words of Heinrich Suso, the great German mystic:

“Thou shalt understand that it is a science most profitable, and passing all other sciences, for to learn to die. For a man to know that he shall die that is common to all men; as much as there is no man that may ever live or he hath hope or trust thereof; but thou shalt find full few that hath this cunning to learn to die. I shall give thee the mystery of this doctrine; that which shall profit thee greatly to the beginning of spiritual health and to a stable fundamental of all virtues”.

If I am, today, open to seeking the truth in the entire spectrum of human thought and divine inspiration, which are inseparable part of cosmic consciousness, it is thanks to my mother.

Love to you all

Monday, October 20, 2008

Spiritual Transit

Return from existence to non-existence!
You are seeking the Lord and you belong to him.
Non-existence is a place of income;
Flee it not! This existence of more or less
Is a place of expenditure.

………. Jallauddin Rumi

Today we are witnessing a global turmoil in the financial market arena. What had seemed to be an unshakable revenue generator lies in shambles. The future looks bleak and we need an apocryphal and yet believable forecast to induce hope in the feeble heart that now beats in the dying embers of the stock market.

Have we placed too much hope on the concept of having? The answer is definitely yes. This is where the wise words of Rumi came to my mind, when he calls our life “…This existence of more or less is a place of expenditure”.

There are two distinctions to be made to the word 'existence'. The first distinction is that there are other existences possible and next, in Rumi's words 'this existence' means a life of existing in the purely physical realm. This is what most of us do. We are so involved in material well being whether it be our body or the comforts we surround ourselves with under a false pretext of an illusionary satisfaction which inevitably is very short lived. When this phase of temporary pleasure comes to an end there appears a false vacuum which becomes the tool for aggregation of more material and physical comforts. Man is caught in this ever expanding spiral of vacuum that sucks out his true being and leaves him with a sense of despondency and loss. So in the wise words of Rumi, you are expending all the, God given, creative energy in such existence. This is equivalent to having not only expenditure but also a negative cash flow. A negative cash flow or empowering energy crunch, results in us borrowing at a damaging interest rate from scrupulous markets or sourcing from elements dealing in devious energies.
On the contrary if we live a life of conscious presence of our true reality, as an entity that belongs fundamentally to the very source that came from non-existence, we become the conduit of that energy flow. We are then not only in the income mode but in a positive cash flow situation. We become the giver of life.

Love to you all

Monday, October 13, 2008

Obelisks of Heliopolis

The obelisk, called TEJEN in the sacred language of the ancient Egyptians, was a term which was synonymous with "protection" or "defence." The needle of stone had the function of acting as a concentrator of cosmic energy, and through the various symbols of the hieroglyphs channels this energy to provide protection and good energy spectrum for those who enter the temple complex for worship. The word "Obelisk" comes from the Greek obeliskos, meaning a prong for roasting. Hence it is a conduit of cosmic energy to cleanse the accumulated dross of human lives before entering the temple.
It is a stone that is frequently monolithic, of a quadrangular base, placed upright and ending with a pointed top. It was placed in the centre of large open spaces in the temples of the god RA. They arose, by the time of the pre-dynastic period cults, to a great sacred stone which was raised in the Temple of Heliopolis, the "City of the Sun." As with the pyramids, this monument had a primitive relation with the solar cult. As a general rule, obelisks were erected in pairs so that harmonized energy flow between the two could be additive and upward flowing so that when the devotee entered between the two there was a surge of energy from the base chakra to the cosmic portal of the body.
The obelisk is composed of two parts: the body and the pyramidon. The body is a long block of a conic trunk section and the pyramidon symbolizes the rays of the sun. The top is the point of a pyramid formation which crowns the monolith and rested on a base. It was plated in gold; a metal which the Egyptians affirmed was the "flesh of the gods." But more due to the reason that gold is a very good conductor of energy.

A hymn to the Sun God Ra, who also takes the names of Tum and Horus, sings the central role of the cosmic sun:

Hail, thou who art come as Tum, and who hast been the creator of the gods!
Hail, thou who art come as soul of the holy souls in Amenti (kingdom of the dead)!
Hail, supreme among the gods, who by thy beauties- dost illumine the kingdom of the dead!
Hail, thou who comest in radiance and travellest in thy disk!
Hail, greatest of all the gods, bearing rule in the highest, reigning in the nethermost heaven!

We can see the resonance of Gayatri mantra in the above hymn.

Gayatri Mantra is devoted to God Savitr. Savitr refers to Sun. Sun here does not imply the sun of our solar system. Rather it implies a Sun of all suns. Sun that is the source of eternal light that provides life, knowledge and enlightenment. Light that can illuminate the soul.

Love to you all

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Redefining Ahimsa

Today there is a silent and agonizing cry for peace. I am not talking about the world at large but the situation in India where there is a monumental increase in terrorism and religious intolerance. There is also massacre and destruction of the ecosystem. Last but not the least a total corruption of human values.

Though the origins of the concept of ahimsa are unknown, the earliest references to ahimsa are found in the texts of historical Vedic religion, dated to 8th century BCE. Here, ahimsa initially relates to "non-injury" without a moral connotation, but later to non-violence to animals and then, to all beings. The idea emerges again in the Mahabharata and Manu Smriti, where ahimsa is said to be merited by good Karma.

It is indeed sad that India, the land of advaita and which showed the way to non-violence through its philosophy and the Gandhian path of action, is in this despicable state.

This is the reason that in the twenty first century there needs to be a redefinition of the concept of ahimsa. We are not fighting a foreign enemy or an invader but our struggle is against factors that eschew and perpetuate violence emanating from innumerable, interconnected situations across the globe.

Looking at the concept of ahimsa at the time of Gandhi, I understand ahimsa as the optimum, functional good on the way to ultimate truth, and not as an unconditionally binding law of non-violence on social and political affairs.

The ultimate truth today is that the whole of humanity in an undivided whole and has its beginning about 40,000 years before as Homo Sapiens Sapiens in Africa from where all the six billion people on earth today came (Oxford university has done a ten year extensive research to map the Mitochondria DNA and the Y Chromosome before arriving at this conclusion).This beginning can also be extrapolated to the very cosmic and spiritual origin of all creation. All divisions, of cast and creed, are man made to engineer his own temporal and materialistic self interest. None of the spiritual leaders, Vedic seers, Buddha, Jesus or Mohamed, ever wanted to found a religion. They were out to bring out the divinity in man through how he can fulfil and find meaning to his life.

The violence of today is the brutal separation of man from his true nature. Only the realisation of divine element in all creation through unbounded love can cement this divide.
Hence ahimsa or non violence today has to transcend beyond passive abstinence from physical violence but proactive posture of realising the very source of all humanity and entire ecosystem and an aspiration towards empowerment and nurturing of every element of our milieu.

Love to you all