Nepal’s Earthquake: Satguru’s Perspective of Disasters

From an article written by by Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, following the Asian Tsunami of 2004: On the philosophical level, major disasters in the world cause everyone to stop and think--think about ourselves, our family, friends, community, nation and the world itself. If our faith is not strong, our thoughts can be of a negative nature. You have heard people wondering aloud why God would allow such a thing to happen, why good people are suffering so, how can there even be a God if such tragedy can occur on Earth? However, if our faith is strong, then our reflections and our reactions remain positive.

From the Hindu point of view, questions of blame and punishment do not arise. God does not punish, does not visit terrible things upon the Earth. It is, after all, His creation. He did give the natural forces on this Earth immense power, yet even these are forces of change and evolution.

For Hindus the most terrific of disasters is not some cosmic chastisement, but the rightful unfolding of dharma and destiny. For the devout Hindu, loss and even death, while difficult, are not beyond our ability to accept. After all, our soul is eternal and through its many lives on Earth undergoes a variety of experiences, many joyful, others sorrowful, but it benefits spiritually from all experience, whether seemingly good or bad.

However, as Gurudeva, Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, said, "Because the fear of death is so much a part of social consciousness today, as ignorance prevails in these matters, sorrow rather than joy is often experienced. In not understanding life in its fullness, many cannot help but misunderstand death. The attitude should be one of joy based on beliefs that come from the knowledge of karma and samsara. Experience of joy and a total release of the loved one would come from a pure understanding of the processes of life. A better word than death is transition, passing into a new form of life--life into life."

My guru's guru, Siva Yogaswami of Jaffna, Sri Lanka, many years ago foresaw the difficult times the peoples of his country have faced for the past two decades of civil war and the loss of 60,000 lives. Now his nation has suffered in one day, December 26, the loss of over 30,000 lives, with one million, fully five percent of the nation, left homeless. This great sage counseled how to cope with such horrific situations in his Natchintanai hymn, "Nalluran Tiruvadi:" "Even if war and famine come and the world is burnt to ashes, shall we know any fear, O Parrot? Arumugam is our refuge."

In other verses Yogaswami stresses that the atma, our soul, is eternal, that Lord Murugan is our protection, and clinging to His holy feet will cause all distress and anguish to disappear. Yogaswami's sagely advice is clear--difficulties are a part of life on this planet and the sorrow they bring can be overcome through the worship of God and the Gods.

In these times, we find solace in the words of the illumined satgurus, whose vision is wider and deeper than our own. Pramukh Swami Maharaj of BAPS counseled his followers in the aftermath of the 2001 Gujarat earthquake: "Natural calamities like earthquakes have been affecting mankind since time immemorial. It is a natural phenomenon, like rain. It is not the wrath of God.

So, whatever has to happen, happens. The good and the painful all are a part of life, and we should accept both with equanimity. When people are facing difficulties and sorrows, our Indian tradition is to offer them solace. We feel that by serving the human beings we serve the Lord Himself." Read the full Article here.

Orchid’s View

A CyberCadet sends this digital painting today, the view of monks in procession on the Great Path as seen from high above by an orchid.

"All men are beautiful walking flowers. Instead of remaining as a witness and enjoying all this, man suffers through being possessed by the disease of 'I' and 'mine.' It is God who sees as the eye behind our eye. Brahman fills us entirely." Siva Yogaswami

A Unique Photo from Sri Lanka

This is the Chellappaswami shrine and this elderly man is Chellappaswami's great nephew.

Many Forms of Siva

We came across this list of beautiful and bizarre creatures today that we'd like to share. These colorful, and in some cases one-of-a-kind beings are a wonderful example of Siva's uncanny and uncommon forms. With all the variety on our little planet alone, it stretches the imagination to infinity, to ponder the countless variation that must exists throughout our galaxy alone, as it floats through Siva's perfect universe.

From Living With Siva:
It takes much meditation to find God Siva in all things, through all things. In this striving--as in perfecting any art or science--regular daily disciplines must be faithfully adhered to. Siva is the immanent personal Lord, and He is transcendent Reality. Siva is a God of love, boundless love. He loves each and every one. Each soul is created by Him and guided by Him through life. God Siva is everywhere. There is no place where Siva is not. He is in you. He is in this temple. He is in the trees. He is in the sky, in the clouds, in the planets. He is the galaxies swirling in space and the space between galaxies, too. He is the universe. His cosmic dance of creation, preservation and dissolution is happening this very moment in every atom of the universe. God Siva is, and is in all things. He permeates all things. He is immanent, with a beautiful form, a human-like form which can actually be seen and has been seen by many people in visions. He is also transcendent, beyond time, cause and space. That is almost too much for the mind to comprehend, isn't it? Therefore, we have to meditate on these things. God Siva is so close to us.

Credit for the above collection:

Archives are now available through 2001. Light colored days have no posts. 1998-2001 coming later.

September 2015
October 2015
November 2015
December 2015
January 2015
February 2015
March 2015
April 2015
May 2015
June 2015
July 2015
August 2015
Subscribe to RSS Feed
Audio Video Slideshows Images Publications Web pages