Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Alchemy to transmute Matter into Spirit

We Indians talk a lot about Samskaaras, and believe that they signify the goodness that we hold as people of this Sacred Land. The fact is that Samkaaras are beyond just goodness; they can be roughly translated as "impressions". The various rituals we have, be it for festivals, occasions or even the day to day activities we do as Hindus, are designed to leave a particular impression on our mind, body and soul complex. Hence, the rituals are no ordinary set of actions. When performed in the right way, they are supposed to change the very essence of the matter we are made of, to the extent of getting programmed in our DNAs. Its a very interesting topic to delve on, and I am already getting flooded with number of interrelated points which need analysis and reconciliation.

As per the Vedic Sciences, matter is Trigunatmak - Rajasic (Action oriented), Tamasic (Inaction Oriented) and Sattvic (Pure and Divine). Its not just our natures but the natures of the inanimate matter which hold these qualities. The whole idea of the practices and the rituals we have is to achieve manifestation of the Spirit; for the Spirit is ever-Perfect and will manifest its beauty only when matter is perfected. This is the matter which makes up our minds, the trees, the stones and everything in this Material World. Each object has its own vibrations, and the greatness of our ancestors lies in the methods they found to transmute matter into its Perfect State - like the alchemy of transforming lead to Gold. For Life and Creation is a never-ending process of material alchemy, which gets garbled due to the 3 gunas around. So intervention is needed to ensure that things go perfectly.

While meditating in the Datta Mandir today, i happened to think about the concept of  Pratisthapan of an idol. Though today for people, an idol is a symbol of the Divine, the fact remains that Divinity is everywhere; rather latent everywhere. A significant question here - Is it true that any idol acquires the qualities essential to be both worshipful, and capable of delivering the positive powers to the devotees? The funny fact is that we usually don't know why we pray in a temple, mosque or a church. In my opinion, we do so for acquiring Energy from the purest sources of it, so that we have the courage and the tenacity to face life and live it righteously.

Now some places of worship are perennial sources of power, and such points help maintain the energy states of cities and regions, making them prosperous and worth living. The ancients had identified them as sacred places and marked them for religious activities.

But today, we tend to open temples and install idols of deities in them, as the population needs convenient spots to offer its prayers to the Divine. At the point of installing the idol, lets remember that the idol is made up of the same matter which is trigunatmak, and is just a symbol as of now - it does not have the qualities for it to be worshipful. To make it worshipful, there is a process of installing it in the right way, on the right day and this process is called Pratisthapan. This paves the way for the idol of the deity to manifest the Divine Element latent inside of it.

Now how does one ensure that the alchemy of the Gunas takes place? Regular abhishekam, pooja, archana, bhajan, dhoopa, deepa, naivedya arpan help set the wheel in motion. We Hindus have so many practices - bathing before going to the temple, the choice of clothes, the foods to be taken, the mental states to maintain, the topics to avoid, the kind of people who should be barred from entering the temple etc. These were created not because our ancients were a bunch of hyperidiotic, over-reacting, paranoid fools but because they were scientific geniuses who knew about maintaining the vibrations of a place to ensure that this process is carried out properly, for the subsequent progress of one and all.

Over time, the idol of the deity acquires an energy so great that some places of worship acquire adoration overnight, and thousands flock to them to find deliverance from the unending problems plaguing their lives. No wonder, some places like Tirupati, and Shirdi are very popular with people, since they channelise so much energy that the results of ones prayers are 'answered' quickly.

You will notice that i have placed 'answered' in quotes. That is because, our prayers are not entirely answered by the Divine Element, but by the change It begets within us to approach our problems with better zeal and stronger faith. And we are usually not aware of it.

This is how, installing a deity and augmenting its Divine energies, helps bring about an alchemical transformation in our thoughts and lives, to make this World a better place.

So, all actions are eventually about bringing human transformation - by regulating what we do, what we eat, how we pray and how we approach our fellow human beings and animal friends on this planet. Sadly for us, due to the degenerating effect of time and the invasions we had, the originally perfect process exists today in bits and pieces; such that it does not make sense to most of us to follow whatever little of it has remained. We may do the pooja, but will not do it in the correct spirit; we may be compassionate towards our fellow human beings but will think little of the trauma of the bird which was killed, spiced and cooked to decorate our dinner table. We may help our fellows with our money and time, but the idea of having helped someone and the expectation of being helped in return will be there in some corner of our mind. We will never think that we are entitled to pay a price for whatever time we are spending on this Planet so whatever we may do towards our fellows is not an investment but a payment procedure. And so goes on the list of our follies....

4 comments:

Usha. said...

the powers are augmented by placing the idol in the sanctum sanctarium right below the 'sikharam'..because it converges to 'bindu akara'...the whole essence of divinity nd the reason behind all manifestation. The bindu akara is the highest state to be attained..beyond that is the nothingness. Hence, 'sthri' is always the desire--dynamic force. This shakthi is always the secret behind all secrets..thus the age-old custom that sthree should be behind the scenes..but its the sthri which actually runs the show by being as secret as possible..that's the source of tremendous power.

Samurai Says..... said...

Thanks for the insights...:)

Anonymous said...

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Samurai Says..... said...

@Anonymous, few posts are surely going to come soon. Thanks for your interest.

I have started another blog page where i am documenting the melodies i have loved. Kindly visit
http://melodiesloved.blogspot.com/. Let me know what you think of it:)

Thanks,
Shrinath