Brahman has no motive in creating the world but projects the universe out of mere sporting impulse which is inherent in Him.- BrahmaSutra : Adhikarana XI: (Sutras 32-33)
That sporting impulse or desire that the above verse mentions has created a game of existence called “LILA”. A game similar to the computer MMORPG – Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game, in which thousands from all parts of the world join the online game and play together in a highly complex, intelligent and evolutionary environment. All players in this game are called “avatars”. I am an avatar in the present game who was been named Mayank Gandhi.
These blogs are an exploration of LILA.
Organized religion tries to convince us that they have the patent on truth and use carrot and stick, damnation and salvation, hell and heaven, guilt and temptation using faith, belief and indoctrination as potent tools. Hence, away from the organized religions, indoctrinations, away from the faith and beliefs of others, faith of my tradition, faith of my family and community, faith of my religion, faith of my nation – let us embark on our personal voyage, unrestrained by anything. Let us find the relationship between the knower, the means of obtaining the knowledge and the object, or simply put – the subject, object and the action. And that search would lead us to answers to the four critical fundamental questions that have been hounding minds for thousands of years.
· What is this existence in which we are living?
· Who am I?
· What is my role in this existence?
· How best can I play this role?
But, as we journey together in this wonderful space of knowledge and enquiry, there are some diversions and gaps that can lead us on the wrong path. Thus, we need to pause and question the validity and the truth of the theory and synthesis that I put forward. Is what I write the genuine “Truth” or is it “My” truth? Truth is relative to the individual and thus when people go in search of reality; they tend to find whatever it is they’re looking for. All evidence is only partial proof and certainty is just a mild form of arrogance. One needs to focus the searchlight of reason and logic to separate faith and belief from reality.
Therefore, to validate knowledge or Truth, we shall use the following three parameters
· Perception (pratyaksha): perceiving knowledge through sense-object contact. This is absolutely unerring and precise.
· Inference (Anumana): Logical inference in which one would require simpler method for one’s self while more detailed inference for others.
· Verbal Testimony or Revelation (Sruti): Revealed truths must do so in terms of what is known. It should not contradict the known, it must be coherent, it cannot be against reason (Though it may stand above reason). The dependence on an individual insight may be offset by the fact of plurality.
The above four fundamental questions will be answered in this series of by using Ancient Hindu knowledge as well as delving deeper into energy dynamics and quantum relationships of existence. Mix it with free will, and we are all set to go on the discovery voyage.
Anything that is nuanced, complex, multi dimensional, multi layered and symbolic can be viewed and perceived at various levels of understanding. For example, at the most superficial level – one can see various Hindu Gods as idols or forms, or at less superficial level as part of a mythology with an interesting story, or going still deeper as moral stories and lessons of life or deeper still as symbols of values. It is at the final, most subtle level of energy dynamics that one truly understands the symbolisms and the deep knowledge which created these symbols.
For example, Ganesha, the elephant God in Hinduism, could be viewed from the simplest level of understanding to the most complex
Level 1 : An elephant headed God who fulfils the aspirations of his devotees, with more impact of prayers on certain days and time.
Level 2: As the son of “Shankar” who as a child ran around his parents to symbolize that the importance of respect to parents, or who places the head of an elephant as a symbolism of the unity of man with all existence.
Level 3: The symbolism of his body parts – stomach as digestion organ of good and bad actions and a repository of wisdom, knowledge and experience, ears as awareness , trunk as a discriminating tool, which can uproot trees while being able to locate and pick up a pin too etc.
Level 4: At the most subtle level, Ganesha is a symbol of the lowest frequency of Muladhar and swadhistana chakra and has the same color (red and orange), earth as the lowest frequency element and therefore the starting point of evolution, an progress symbolized by the immersion of the earth element into the next higher element – water. And therefore, all activities of spiritual growth or business begins with praying to Ganesha.
Level 1 : An interesting story of kings and their relationship, kingdom, governance, war and lives.
Level 2: A story with morals about how to behave with your family, enemies etc. How each of the Pandava brothers denote certain characteristics with Yudhisthir, the eldest being the symbol of Dharma whom one has to consult before any action etc.
Level 3 : Draupadi, the wife can be understood as the body with the five senses (husbands), a hundred tendencies that are the enemies of spiritual growth, Krishna, the God, as the saviour of the body as it is disrobed by the tendencies etc. Or, the chariot of Arjuna (the man) being reined and driven by the five wild horses of the senses and God the charioteer guiding the man towards a war against the evil etc.
Level 4: The Mahabharata could also be understood to have been taking place at all times within oneself, with the war between the good and the evil tendencies. Within this war, Krishna or God, through the profound “Bhagvata Gita”- exhorts one to fight the immorality unrelentingly leaving aside cowardice and relationships. The Bhagvata Gita is used within the sets of an epic war to impart knowledge on various facets of life, spiritual yearnings etc.
Level 5: The entire Mahabharata could be understood from the quantum perspective with the five brothers and other players defining various frequencies and the free will using the three frequency characteristics of Sattva, Rajjas and Tamas to define and guide one’s life.
Similarly, Jesus and the new testament could also be understood at the basic story, moral, value level or at the level where it talks about advaita “The kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 117:20-21) and unity of the microcosm and the macrocosm “But the kingdom is within you and without you” (Thomas p.3) or the origin of existence by involution “Spirit gives life, the flesh counts for nothing” (John 3:6; 6:63)
There can be multiple routes that one can take for spiritual growth based on one’s inclinations and strengths.
Bhakti Yoga – based on prayers, devotion and faith
Karma Yoga – based on work for the Supreme and people
Raja Yoga – based on meditation
Jnana Yoga – based on knowledge and contemplation
We shall adopt the Jnana yoga route in these blogs.
While there are four different interpretations of Vedic / Hindu, namely, writings and practices pertaining to
§ the deities (Adhidaivik), or
§ the cosmos (Adhibhautik), or
§ sacrifices and rituals (Adhiyajnik), or
§ the spiritual aspects (Adhyatmik),
we shall confine our interpretations to the spiritual – adhyatmik aspect only.
So, as we voyage together in the search of the existential issues, please keep your intellectual antennae on and continue questioning as we find various answers – different for each of us. We are all unique with our own knowledge acquiring processes and paths. A journey in the subject as vast and profound as the discovery of “Who am I?” needs exuberance and daring, and surely,not a defensive nor a looking-over-the-shoulder attitude.
In this journey of unveiling LILA, I intend to share myself, my experiences, my knowledge and the process that I went through. Everyone follows their own path, their own destiny and their own goals. The reason I do not subscribe my knowledge to the grace of God, Divinity, Creator or a Guru, is then, the sharing will stop becoming replicable. You will then start feeling that you cannot go down the same path – as I have got it out of grace and some illogical, magical process, or because of my past life. Therefore, to achieve the goal of initiating your journey, it is necessary to stay on the rational side of reality, science and logic.
I invite all of you to choose to “not accept” my findings and observations, but treat these as an initiation to conduct your own internal search for Truth. Let us not follow someone else’s route, let us create our own path, our own answers, our own Reality, our own Truth.
If I succeed in sparking an initiation for someone to start their spiritual search – I’ll have done my bit.
“ If I were asked under what sky the human mind has most fully developed some of its choicest gifts, has most deeply pondered on the greatest problems of life, and has found solutions, I should point to India”
– Max Mueller, German scholar