Ahimsa, All Life is God.
Trilogy Commentary, MWS Lesson 274
Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami , 2020-01-12
In Hinduism all life is seen as the Divine. Become aware of life energy in all that lives. God is the Soul of the soul. Bask contentedly in Siva consciousness beholding the Light of life, being the Life of life. Siva is the inner Light of the soul. Surrender, accept what's going on as Siva's dance. Sarvam Sivam Ceyal--Siva is doing it all. Experience the Divine; look deeply into the eyes of another person, see God within as the Life of their life.
Master Course, Living with Siva, Lesson 274. Tirumantiram.
Good morning everyone. Lesson 274: Living with Siva
"Nonviolence has long been central to the religious traditions of India--especially Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. Religion in India has consistently upheld the sanctity of life, whether human, animal or, in the case of the Jains, elemental. There developed early in India an unparalleled concern for harmony among different life forms, and this led to a common ethos based on noninjuriousness and a minimal consumption of natural resources, in other words to compassion and simplicity. If Homo sapiens is to survive his present predicament, he will have to rediscover these two primary ethical values..."
I'm skipping slightly forward.
"In order to understand the pervasive practice of nonviolence in Hinduism, one must investigate the meaning of life. Why is life sacred? For India's ancient thinkers, life is seen as the very stuff of the Divine, an emanation of the Source and part of a cosmic continuum..."
Then we have some other material by Gurudeva, Sutra Three relates to that:
"Seeing Siva's energy in all Siva's devotees bask contentedly in Siva consciousness, seeing the pure life energy in every person, animal, bird, reptile, fish, insect, plant, tree and even microscopic intelligence as Supreme God Siva Himself."
So there's a beautiful Tamil word, 'uyirkkuyir' which our Tamil lexicon defines as: "God who is the soul of the soul." or, Life of life. That's Siva's the Life of your life, so life and soul are the same word, 'uyir.' And one of my favorite verses from the Tirumantiram relates to that:
"Being the Life of life is splendrous jnana worship. Beholding the Light of life is great yoga worship. Giving life by invocation is external worship. Adoration that displaces anger is charya worship."
Its an interesting verse. Our original translator of the Tirumantiram, B. Natarajan, fudged on the last verse, I don't know why. Made it sound very different, something like: Attending puja is charya. But it's starting out with the basics and ending up with the most advanced.
And the last line reads, in Tamil
"Seiyirkadai nesam, Sivapusai aamey."
So actually the translation we now have nicely translates it.
"...Adoration that displaces anger is charya worship." So that's the last line: "seiyirkadai nesam..."
Our translator, Sabharathnam, if you've read his translations, different translators have different approaches to translating. His is: You need to understand what it means. So, he'll put everything you need to know to understand what it means into the translation. So even though it just says: "Adoration that displaces anger is charya worship" this is how he renders it: "The worship of Siva pertaining the the charya path is to be with pure and spontaneous love which wards off anger, lust and other such vices and which renders fitness to the devotees to do services without expecting any benefit or reward."
He pulls all that out of that one verse there, you know what it means, you really know what it means. And it's again, it's a beautiful part of Gurudeva's teachings that generally we talk about when it comes to the chakras and lots of teachings the emphasis is on: Well let's awaken the higher chakras, talk about the chakras. The first sentence will be about awakening the higher chakras, right? But the first sentence of Gurudeva is: Well, wait a second here, let's close off the lower ones first.
So this is that idea, you know, we have to deal with anger. Anger is the major issue of the, what would you say? It kind of destroys devotion. You get angry and there your devotion goes. You know, anger needs to be seriously faced and controlled. And quite often it's not talked about but Gurudeva was never shy to talk about what needed to be talked about, so he talks a lot about anger. And in some of my talks I give the example of the really devout person who goes to the temple, so devotional and all and just looks perfect and then goes home and yells at the wife and kids.
Not the way to do it of course. You know, you don't want a dual standard; the home should be just like the temple and your behavior in the home should be just like your behavior in the temple.
And the next one:
"Giving life by invocation is external worship."
So that means, conducting puja. It's the kriya pada in our tradition. We not only attend puja but eventually learn to conduct puja and the idea of invocation, "avahana ..." is the word, "avahana. staphana..."
So we're giving life by invoking. We're giving life in the sense by bring the Deity into the murti. So through our external worship we're giving life. Avahana.
See what Sabharathnam says here:
"The external worship belonging to the kriya path is to perform the rituals such as installation of the image of Siva, invoking the Lord and so on."
Very straightforward; perform the rituals.
Then we get into yoga:
"Beholding the Light of life is great yoga worship."
You'll remember that Gurudeva describes the inner light as caused by friction, two things striking each other. You get a spark, you strike two stones together; you get a spark. So this is like that. Two things are coming together. One is odic energy and the other is actinic energy or the life. Actinic energy means the same. Another word for 'uyir' or life. So when they come together or that part of your consciousness where they're both present, you see light. If you go deeper there's no light. You're in, actinic force by itself does not have light if you go into it deeply enough. But when you're conscious of both actinic and odic force then you're beholding the light of life.
So, let's see what Sabharathnam says:
"The yoga-based worship is to be in one-pointed concentration on the chosen form of Siva or formless Siva who is the inner light of the souls."
Okay? Very good.
Then we get: "Being the Life of life is splendrous jnana worship."
So, "Being the Life of life..." means its who you think you are. You're not, the holding, the holding is a dualism, right? I am seeing the inner light. 'I' is over here and the inner light is over there. But this is 'being' the Life of life. So that means you're identifying with it. There's only one thing. You and the Life of life are the same thing. That's jnana.
"The knowledge-based worship is meditating on the Lord with a conviction that Siva is the inner soul of each and every soul."
Very nice. One of the stories I developed, try and relate to this. Relates to the idea of Siva's doing it all. Is it 'Sarvam Sivam Ceyal?' Something like that? Siva's doing it all. It's about a computer. So if you imagine the computer had self awareness. It thought of itself as a being. And, of course, one of the challenges of being a being is pride. And, the computer is so smart, it can do all of these things, right? It can calculate spread sheets; it can handle word processing; it can do a data-base. It can go out on the internet. It can do all these things. So a computer, add self-awareness it can be very proud of all its abilities.
Something we have here, quite common is, we lose electricity, right? So what happens when the electricity goes off? What can the computer do? Can't do anything, right? Sometimes when we lose electricity you see the monks wandering around; they can't do anything. Cause almost everything we do is related to the computer. The point being, it's the electricity that's doing it, right? The electricity is causing the computer to be able to do something and the electricity is doing it all. And, likewise, you know, when we look at ourselves we tend to think, Oh, I have all these abilities, and but it's actually it's Siva as the life within us that's doing it all. So, Siva's doing it all is the Life of our life and it's a wonderful meditation to try and back away from the sense that 'I' am doing it to the sense that Siva's doing it and it can help in, when things aren't happening the way you want them to happen. It's one of the biggest challenges individuals face is when things aren't going the way you want them to go and you're objecting to life. Life is not happening the way it was supposed to today. You're objecting to it. And that can lead to other emotions. But, if you're able to accept what's going on as Siva's dance, Siva's doing it all then there's a surrender and an ability to flow with it and work through it in a more positive way.
And there's one more, idea that relates. Comes from the Publisher's Desk; "I Want to See God--Suggestions on Where and How to Look." You remember that one? Well, the first, I'll review the four ways of seeing God. Then it's the second one we're focusing on. First way is in a great teacher. That's the easiest way to see God, right? is in a great teacher. We're all people oriented so we see certain energy emanating from a great teacher. Second way is the one we're going to look at in depth here is seeing the life in the eyes of any and everyone. So, way, you're seeing God as the life within someone. Third way is in the temple murti and the fourth way is in meditation.
So this is the second way:
"Another way to see God, which is a little more difficult but still easy to do, is to look deeply into the eyes of another person. Look beyond the personality, go deeper than his or her intellect and see the pure life energy, which is God. A great saying, mahavakya, that describes this approach to experiencing the Divine is the Tamil word Uyirkkuyir, 'God it the Life of our life.
"This practice does not stop with people but should also include trying to see the life energy in trees, birds and animals. This is because God is our life. God is the life in all beings. Becoming aware of this life energy in all that lives is becoming aware of God's presence within us. A beautiful verse from the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad elucidates this concept: 'He who knows God as the Life of life, the Eye of the eye, the Ear of the ear, the Mind of the mind, he indeed comprehends fully the Cause of all causes.' In Hindu culture, every time we greet another person with the traditional gesture of namaskar, we have the opportunity to practice looking deeply enough into his or her eyes to see God within as the Life of their life. This is fulfilling the deepest meaning of namaskar, which means, 'I greet God in you.'"
What's very interesting, we get all kinds of individuals visiting here, Hindus, those who hold Hindu beliefs and those who don't hold any Hindu beliefs. And it's very interesting how those who don't any Hindu beliefs greet you. They don't see God in you. You know, they're seeing you as a person. I've experienced it many times, say Oh. You know those who hold Hindu beliefs or who are Hindu they greet you in a certain way and they see God in you. And others don't, so it's a very, as it says: In Hindu culture. So it's very, very much a Hindu idea that God is within the person you're greeting.
So thank you very much.
Aum Namah Sivaya.