April 18, 2014 - Lesson 6

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Sloka 6 from Dancing with Siva

What Are Hinduism's Principal Sects?

The Sanatana Dharma, or "eternal faith," known today as Hinduism, is a family of religions that accept the authority of the Vedas. Its four principal denominations are Saivism, Shaktism, Vaishnavism and Smartism. Aum.

Bhashya

The world's billion Hindus, one-sixth of the human family, are organized in four main denominations, each distinguished by its Supreme Deity. For Vaishnavites, Lord Vishnu is God. For Saivites, God is Siva. For Shaktas, Goddess Shakti is supreme. For Smartas, liberal Hindus, the choice of Deity is left to the devotee. Each has a multitude of guru lineages, religious leaders, priesthoods, sacred literature, monastic communities, schools, pilgrimage centers and tens of thousands of temples. They possess a wealth of art and architecture, philosophy and scholarship. These four sects hold such divergent beliefs that each is a complete and independent religion. Yet, they share a vast heritage of culture and belief--karma, dharma, reincarnation, all-pervasive Divinity, temple worship, sacraments, manifold Deities, the guru-shishya tradition and the Vedas as scriptural authority. While India is home to most Hindus, large communities flourish worldwide. The Vedas elaborate, "He is Brahma. He is Siva. He is Indra. He is the immutable, the supreme, the self-luminous. He is Vishnu. He is life. He is time. He is the fire, and He is the moon." Aum Namah Sivaya.


Lesson 6 from Living with Siva

The Self God Within


The Self: you can't explain it. You can sense its existence through the refined state of your senses, but you cannot explain it. To know it, you have to experience it. And the best you can say about it is that it is the depth of your Being, the very core of you. It is you.

If you visualize above you nothing; below you nothing; to the right of you nothing; to the left of you nothing; in front of you nothing; in back of you nothing; and dissolve yourself into that nothingness, that would be the best way you could explain the realization of the Self. And yet that nothingness would not be the absence of something, like the nothingness inside an empty box, which would be like a void. That nothingness is the fullness of everything: the power, the sustaining power, of the existence of what appears to be everything.

After you realize the Self, you see the mind for what it is--a self-created principle. That is the mind ever creating itself. The mind is form ever creating form, preserving form, creating new forms and destroying old forms. That is the mind, the illusion, the great unreality, the part of you that in your thinking mind you dare to think is real. What gives the mind that power? Does the mind have power if it is unreal? What difference whether it has power or hasn't power, or the very words that I am saying when the Self exists because of itself? You could live in the dream and become disturbed by it. Or you can seek and desire with a burning desire to cognize reality and be blissful because of it. Man's destiny leads him back to himself. Man's destiny leads him into the cognition of his own Being; leads him further into the realization of his True Being. They say you must step onto the spiritual path to realize the Self. You only step on the spiritual path when you and you alone are ready, when what appears real to you loses its appearance of reality. Then and only then are you able to detach yourself enough to seek to find a new and permanent reality.

Have you ever noticed that something you think is permanent, you and you alone give permanence to that thing through your protection of it?

Have you ever stopped to even think and get a clear intellectual concept that the Spirit within you is the only permanent thing? That everything else is changing? That everything else has a direct wire connecting it to the realms of joy and sorrow? That is the mind.

As the Self, your Effulgent Being, comes to life in you, joy and sorrow become a study to you. You do not have to think to tell yourself that each in its own place is unreal. You know from the innermost depths of your being that form itself is not real.

The subtlety of the joys that you experience as you come into your Effulgent Being cannot be described. They can only be projected to you if you are refined enough to pick up the subtlety of vibration. If you are in harmony enough, you can sense the great joy, the subtlety of the bliss that you will feel as you come closer and closer to your real Self.

If you strive to find the Self by using your mind, you will strive and strive in vain, because the mind cannot give you Truth; a lie cannot give you the truth. A lie can only entangle you in a web of deceit. But if you sensitize yourself, awaken your true, fine, beautiful qualities that all of you have, then you become a channel, a chalice in which your Effulgent Being will begin to shine. You will first think that a light is shining within you. You will seek to find that light. You will seek to hold it, like you cherish and hold a beautiful gem. You will later find that the light that you found within you is in every pore, every cell of your being. You will later find that that light permeates every atom of the universe. You will later find that you are that light and what it permeates is the unreal illusion created by the mind.


Sutra 6 of the Nandinatha Sutras

Living Contemplatively

Siva's devotees cultivate a contemplative nature by meditating daily, seeking the light, drawing the lesson from each experience and identifying with infinite intelligence, not with body, emotion or intellect. Aum.


Lesson 6 from Merging with Siva

The Perspective Of the Knower


Most people have not realized that they are and were Siva before they search for Siva. They are confined to their own individual anava, their personal ego and ignorance. When we realize that we have come from Siva, the way back to Siva is clearly defined. That is half the battle, to realize we came from Siva, live in Siva and are returning to Siva. Knowing only this much makes the path clear and impels us to return to Him, to our Source, to our Self. We only see opposites when our vision is limited, when we have not experienced totally. There is a point of view which resolves all contradictions and answers all questions. Yet to be experienced is yet to be understood. Once experienced and understood, the Quiet comes.

The only change that occurs is the awakening of the sahasrara chakra and the perspective that a mind has which has undone itself, transcended itself in formless Being and Non-Being, and then returned to the experiences of form. The experiences are all still there, but never again are they binding. The fire or life energy which rises in the normal person high enough to merely digest the food eaten, rises to the top of the enlightened man's head, burns through a seal there, and his consciousness has gone with it. He is definitely different from an ordinary person. He died. He was reborn. He is able and capable of knowing many things without having to read books or listen to others speak their knowledge at him. His perceptions are correct, unclouded and clear. His thoughts manifest properly in all planes of consciousness--instinctive, intellectual and superconscious or spiritual. He lives now, fully present in all he does.

The internal difference that makes a soul a jnani is that he knows who he is and who you are. He knows Truth, and he knows the lie. Another difference is that he knows his way around within the inner workings of the mind. He can travel here and there with his own 747, without extraneous external conveyances. He knows the goings-on in far-off places. He is consciously conscious of his own karma, dharma and that of others. For him there is no apartness, due to his attainment within the chakras previously described. His only gift to others, to the world, would be blessings, an outpouring of energy to all beings from the higher planes where he resides. It is the jnani, the enlightened being who sees beyond duality and knows the oneness of all. He is the illumined one, filled with light, filled with love. He sees God everywhere, in all men. He is the one who simply is and who sees no differences. That is his difference.