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  • thehindu@vsnl.com
    ============================================================= This article has been sent to you by Ram Chandran ( rchandran@cox.net )
    Message 1 of 330 , Jul 1, 2002
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      Source: thThe Hindu (http://www.hinduonnet.com/2002/07/01/stories/2002070100590800.htm)

      Miscellaneous
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      Religion


      God can be known as existence




      CHENNAI
      JULY 1

      . The Absolute (Brahman or God of religion) is the subject matter of the scriptures and the key to understanding this unknown Reality is by adopting two approaches— as consciousness and as existence. By following either of them spiritual knowledge results when study of the scriptures is undertaken. In the Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna explains the Absolute as existence (Sat) by applying the method of superimposition, which is a way of explaining the unknown (Brahman) by progressing from what is known to human perception. This is logical also because a spiritual aspirant can be expected to evolve only gradually and has to start with what is familiar to him to understand the Absolute, which is the goal of his quest.

      The Gita says, "The eternal Being (Brahman) cannot be described either as existent or non-existent (in the way material objects perceived by senses are described). His hands and feet are everywhere. His eyes, ears and mouth grasp everything. His face is in all directions. He is the transcendent Spirit enveloping all that exist." This can be understood with example. A noun and an adjective have twofold functions. Both can reveal either the substance or the property. When we say "gold chain" the adjective "gold" reveals the substance with which the chain is made.

      In the statement, "He is a tall man", the adjective "tall" reveals the property. With these examples in mind, one has to approach the concept of the Absolute, which is unknown. It is obvious that which does not exist cannot be experienced. Hence, whatever can be experienced must have an existence. When one sees a desk the perception of this object amounts to experiencing, "The desk is", in which the "desk" is the noun and "is" performs the adjective function of revealing its property. So perception of an object or the entire universe, which is experienced by man, reveals the existence of the Absolute Reality. Instead of experiencing "existence" per se, man experiences "is-ness". The very fact that the "world is" points to "Absolute is". Existence hence could only be known through a medium, said Swamini Satyavratananda in her discourse.

      This can be appreciated with the example of asking someone to bring water. The person brings only a glass of water, as without a container it is not possible to bring water. Similarly existence is intangible and cannot be perceived without a name and form.






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    • thehindu@vsnl.com
      Namaste The theme of this article is also jnana and Bhakti! ============================================================= This article has been sent to you by
      Message 330 of 330 , May 1, 2003
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        Namaste

        The theme of this article is also jnana and Bhakti!

        =============================================================
        This article has been sent to you by Ram Chandran ( rchandran@... )
        =============================================================
        Source: The Hindu (http://www.hinduonnet.com/2003/05/02/stories/2003050200830900.htm)

        Miscellaneous
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        Religion
          

        Abounding grace of the Lord




        CHENNAI
        MAY 2

        . Only one who is devoted to God can appreciate the role of Divine grace in human lives. It is human nature to credit all worldly accomplishments to one's ability and effort forgetting the fact that nothing is possible without God's grace. Unalloyed devotion to the Almighty and remembering Him while engaged in all activities will surely elicit His grace. This insight has been highlighted in the Mahabharata. The Pandavas who were devoted to Lord Krishna survived the war because of His grace while the Kauravas in spite of the strength of their army and power perished eventually. The epic therefore is not just the story of the fratricidal war between the cousins but the depiction of the glory of Lord Krishna whose unfailing grace steered the Pandavas through the innumerable setbacks in their lives.

        It was His benevolent grace, which Bhishma sought when he lay awaiting his end on a bed of arrows and when Lord Krishna appeared by His side, this great man of wisdom recalled every instance of His grace in the prayer he addressed to Him. In particular he remembered the Lord breaking His vow of not to take up arms during the Mahabharata war, on the third day of the fight. Duryodana had provoked Bhishma the previous night as the war was not progressing to his advantage. Even though he clearly told him that the Pandavas were invincible as the Lord was on their side and he should give consideration to his age, the elder fought like one charged the next day. It stunned Arjuna and Lord Krishna's act shook him out of his complacency, said Sri B. Sundar Kumar in his discourse.

        Seeing that Arjuna was not putting up a spirited fight, the Lord greatly angered jumped down from the chariot and rushed towards Bhishma branding His discus, His upper garment dropping behind Him. Beholding His wrathful form assumed with the intention of protecting Arjuna to the extent of breaking His vow, Bhishma prayed with folded hands, "I bow down to You. I have been honoured by this appearance of Yours. Please grant me release from this human bondage. Please kill me. There will be no glory greater than death at Your hands." And in his prayer Bhishma recalled the Lord's graciousness of violating His vow in order to exalt his wish of compelling Him to take up arms.





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