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Monthly eMagazine of the International Vedanta Mission

Year 21

Issue 5

Monthly eMagazine of the International Vedanta Mission Nov 2015 : Year 21 / Issue 5

Editor: Swamini Samatananda Saraswati

}s fo|s osfnrO;s fg 'kCncz達 ija p ;r~A 'kCncz達f.k fu".kkr% ija cz達kf/kxPNfrAA There are two categories of knowledge - both worth knowing. The first is Sabda-Brahman (pertaining to the manifested truth, all that which can be objectified), and the second is about ParaBrahman (the subjective, unmanifest & the transcendental truth). One who knows the first properly, becomes competent to know the latter kind. Amrutbindu Upanishad -17

Published by

International Vedanta Mission /

Section Index 1.

Message of P. Guruji







2. 5. 6. 7. 7. 8. 9.

10. 11.

Tattva Bodha



Gita Reflections



Yoga Vasistha



VM News




Story Section





VM Activities



VM Programs






from Poojya Guruji Swami Atmanandaji

Absolute & Relative Vedanta reveals that the true nature of everyone is Brahman - infinite, complete, timeless. To directly realize this fact - as our very Self, is the door to Moksha. Moksha is the real goal of life, all other goals are preparatory in nature. Moksha is all about direct knowledge, an awakening to the truth of life & oneself. As long as our very identity is limited & also relative, so long we shall continue to transmigrate and keep on endlessly seeking. The core realization is about our very truth - as limitless, infinite and absolute. Not only we need to appreciate & realize this astounding & amazing fact that 'I am That' but also very clearly appreciate that everything else is relative. Anything which is relative exists only in relation to something else, and is therefore not independently existing on its own as that particular thing. Like A man is a father only in relation to his children. He cannot be called a father without any children around - that is relative existence. Anything with relative existence is not indepedently existing as that particular thing. Anything which is relative is technically called as Mithya, and the students of absolute & timeless truth learn to take all relative things lightly, for the simple reason that it is not really & independently there. May the focus of all students of the truth of life remain focussed, may they not be destracted by transactional aspects of life, then alone they can undertake this unique & amazing journey. The capacity of deal with transactional world is simple common sense, and just requires open eyes & ears. The world itself teaches us various lessons of life and even an atheist starts leading his/her life intelligently. While learning from life by keeping an open mind is a great quality but true intelligence is not merely transactional smartness but the capacity to see through all this game and appreciate even the transendental truth - of the world and more so about oneself. Slowly & steadily one learn to act lovingly, intelligently & even creatively - yet unattached. Such people live to give rather than take. Attachment is all about motivation for selfish ends. Every attachment is a call for self-security & preservation. We love because of our happiness, we earn because of our security & comforts. We crave for recognition for our ego-fulfillment. It is all selfcentered motivation. Stress is an inevitable outcome of self-centric endeavors. When something is not happening as per our plans then it becomes an existential issue and that is what stresses us. All this is because we are living to take. Initial knowledge enlightens us to see the beauty of selfless & loving life. Any karma undertaken with this motivation is a joy for us and also for all those round. They love their work, they love the people around yet hang on to none. All this knowledge is good & even essentail, but this is not yet Vedanta, it is all preparations for the real knowledge of life. We call this stage of life as conscientious living, caring living, loving living - this is what Yoga is all about. It helps to bring about a loving, sensitive, dynamic, focused yet a detached mind. Such people enjoy doing any sewa. It is the journey which is important, reaching is natural. Real knowledge starts with such a 'yogi' mind and is no more interested with better living etc, it just wants to know the absolute truth. Such person are adept in managing things of relative value, and thereafter its is some other pilgrimage. They want to know what is it which transcends relative realm, for the simple reason that relativity is an endless game, and at the end of it you are dealing with things which are not really there. Living only in this midst is like children playing with toys. We are amazed to realize how neck deep we are in this relative world, and the first thing is to get rid of all these cobwebs. That is called negation. Once our mind is free from excessive importance we give to things of relative existence, we attain what we call as a mind of a sanyasi, and it is they alone who realize the awesome substratum of all this dreamy world. Negation of relative is the door to the realization of the absolute.

Tattva Bodha What is the Gross Body?

In the previous discussion the student had expressed his desire to know the Atma. The Acharya gave some pointers explaining what the Atma is not and what the nature of the Atma is. It was indicated that the Atma or the Self is that which is beyond the three bodies, that which transcends the five sheaths & that which is the seer of the three states of existence. Atma is that which is of the nature of Sat Chit & Ananda. Having got introduced to such pointers, the student does not take things for granted but goes on to further enquire what is the first body which has been mentioned as the Sthoola Shareer or the Gross body?

That which is made up of the five great elements that have undergone the process of panchikarana, born as a result of the good actions of the past, the counter of experiences like joy, sorrow etc and subject to the modifications namely, to pottentially exist, to be born, to grow, to mature, to decay and to die-is the gross body. The Atma cannot be directly objectified and hence pointers have been given to reveal the atma by negating what the Atma is not. This being the fundamental the Acharya explained the Atma by pointing out that which the Atma is not and so in the previous section it was said the Atma is that which is other than the three bodies, the five koshas and the three states. Keeping this in mind if one were to directly embibe that the Atma is other than the three bodies or the five koshas etc, it would only be an imaginary awareness for a seeker who wishes to enquire about the truth. It is not enough to merely glide into an imaginary perception that the Atma is not this or that. To actually see this truth one has to prove this fact by directly seeing why the atma is not the three bodies etc. To see this one has to dive deeply into knowing the truth of the anatma that is the three bodies and the five koshas and so on. Hence there is a sure necessity of studying the various aspects of the three bodies in order to negate them and to realize the truth. This is known as the process of discrimination between that which is the

atma and that which is not the atma. It is the discrimination of the three bodies. It is extremely important to see what the atma is not. This alone paves the path of knowing the atma. Otherwise an imaginary conclusion of the atma will be like another feather in the cap of knowledge. Having known directly that I am not the body then all the features connected to the body like birth, change and death become a case of objective experience. This body is mine, I am not the body. The body is born and the body will die not me. In the process of self knowledge the atma does not have to be seen, all that needs to be done is to remove the veils of seeing the body as the atma. Unveiling the superimpositions of the Self on the non-self and of the non-self on the Self. Just as the sun is not visible due to the clouds, it is not the clouds which cover the sun the clouds actually veil our vision, so also our misunderstanding of the self and the world has veiled our vision and we are unable to see the real self. Our conditioning and

Vedanta Sandesh

attach ment to the body is the obstacle in not being able to see the self. Hence this analyses of the three bodies holds great significance. What is the Sthoola Shareera or the Gross body? The Gross body is the physical body which can be perceived by our senses, hence it is called the gross body. The Acharya gives us some distinct features that cover various aspects of the Gross body. That which is made up of the five great elements that have undergone the process of grossification: The Gross body is made up of the five great elements that have undergone the process of panchikarana or grossification. The five great elements are space, air, fire, water and earth. For that matter the entire world is a manifestation of millions of gross bodies all which are a permutation and combination of the five great elements. The Jiva in his ignorance identifies with this gross body and comes to believe that ‘I am born’ and ‘I will die’. In reality I am not this body but the body is mine wherein I as Jiva lives. Born as a result of good actions in the past: The human body is indeed a fruit of the good deeds performed in the previous births. A human being is the only adjunct wherein not only do we have the pottential to be conscious and of the world other than the Self but only a human being has the pottential to conscious of the true nature of the Self. Saints and the Scriptures forever glorify the opportunity to be born as a human being. In fact a human birth is the only kind where has the freedom to perform actions based on one’s discrimination. A man alone has the freedom to discriminate between right and wrong, between good and bad, to do or not to do or even to do otherwise and above all a human being alone can realize ignorance and evolve the Self by acquiring right knowledge. Thus based upon the law of karma good and

righteous deeds alone earn us the privelege of being born as a human being. A life further lived of meritorious actions gains the opportunity to bring about a mind and situation to acquire Self knowledge. The Counter of Experiences: Our Gross body is the house or office wherein ‘I’ the Jiva goes through various experiences and performs all the transactions of the senses and the mind. Without this physical body it would not be possible to interact with the objective world. It is thus said the gross body is the house through which we experience pleasure and pain. In the Upanishads the gross body is compared to a city with nine gates. It is subject to six modifications: The gross body undergoes six modifications: 1: Asti: (Manifested Existence): The coming of the Jiva in the mother’s womb. The first sign of existence of a living being. 2: Jayate: (is born): Birth of the baby. When he comes out of the mother’s womb to experience the outside world. 3: Vardhate: (grows): Slowly the physical growth of the baby takes place. The body is noursihed by food and thus develops the annamaya shareera. 4: Viparinamate: (matures): It grows from being a child to an adolescent, to an adult and over time the body finally attains its peak and starts maturing. 5: Apakshiyate: (decays): Signs of aging begin to show in the body. Hair turns grey, bones weaken and slowly an overall process of degeneration in all parts of the body begins to take place. 6: Vinashyati: (dies): The body embraces death and finally disintegrates to go back to its constituent elements.

May the ‘Festival of Light’, bring ‘Love & Light’ in your Life -7-

The Starfish

Once a man was walking along a beach. The sun was shining and it was a beautiful day. Off in the distance he could see a person going back and forth between the surf's edge and and the beach. Back and forth this person went. As the man approached, he could see that there were hundreds of starfish stranded on the sand as the result of the natural action of the tide. The man was stuck by the the apparent futility of the task. There were far too many starfish. Many of them were sure to perish. As he approached, the person continued the task of picking up starfish one by one and throwing them into the surf. As he came up to the person, he said: "You must be crazy. There are thousands of miles of beach covered with starfish. You can't possibly make a difference." The person looked at the man. He then stooped down and pick up one more starfish and threw it back into the ocean. He turned back to the man and said: "It sure made a difference to that one!"

Vedanta Sandesh

Creation in Vedanta What is the essence of the Theory of Creation as postulated by Vedanta?

___________________________________________________________________ Hari om !

There are basically two aspects of the Theory of Creation as presented by the Rishis of the Upanishads.



should learn to see the



manifestation of god,

we need to see the intrinsic divinity of

everything, and later discover its relativity,

which means that it is

not there from the absolute point of view. So





foundations for the realization of the nondual reality.

- PoojyaGuruji

One, creation is a deliberate & conscious presentation of & by Ishwara. Ishwara represents one who is infinite, limitless, the very embodiment of intelligence & power. He is of the nature of Sat-Chit-Ananda, Existence-Consciousness & Bliss, coupled with omniscience & omnipotence. Creation is not a chemical reaction of some inert matter, but is a very harmonious, exquisitely balanced, deliberate, conscious & loving presentation of God. At the very heart of everything & everyone is love, so it is very appropriate to say that everyone is part of one Ishwara - who is basically formless & nameless divinity, an embodiment of intelligence, and is the material & also the instrumental cause of the entire creation. The creation has come out because of 'his' sankalpa, like the tree comes out from a seed. He is called the 'Abhinna-Nimitta-UpadanaKarana' of the creation. He is the intelligent creator and also the very material of the creation. Not only from him alone the creation has manifested, but the implication is that he alone has manifested as 'all this'. Therefore we see intrinsic beauty & divinity in everything, and also there is amazing harmony in everything. Everyone has inifite potential as God himself, everyone is basically divine, blissful & loving. The extent of manifestation of divinity depends on the kind of upadhi, which is always subject to improvement. The fulfillment of life is not in aggrandizing things outside, but waking up to ones subjective truth. Two, the Theory of Creation presented by the Masters of Upanishads presents the truths about creation in such a way, so as to reveal the relativity of the world. The trigger of the manifestation is the Maya Shakti of Brahman, which is just the projecting power of the mind, and the dream-like creation is presented because of ignorance of our truth. As long as the ignorance remains so long we shall continue to live in this relative transactional world. To say that the world is relative implies that from the absolute point of view it is not there. If at all someone can wake up to the absolute non-dual reality, then it is logical that the duality would have to be negated. The creation is explained in upanishads in such a way that we negate the world, and realize it to the ephemeral. Realization of the ephemerality of the creation is the basic objective of the Theory of Creation of Vedanta. So initially one should learn to see the creation as manifestation of god, we need to see the intrinsic divinity of everything, and later discover its relativity, which means that it is not there from the absolute point of view. So the srishti siddhanta are foundations for the realization of the non-dual reality. Love & om

Swami Atmananda -9-


(Daivi hyesha gunamayi)

Swamini Samatananda

This world or the Jagat is created by Ishwara’s power called Maya. Maya is Ishwara’s divine power. It is like that majical power which brings into existence that which is not really there but still appears to be there. Such is the amazing power of Maya that the entire world is deluded by it. Just like we get deluded by the awesome creation of a magician. Nothing created by the magician truly exists yet it all appears to be real. So also maya production deludes the world. The glory of this delusion is such that most of us blindly follow each other in acquiring the pleasures of this mirage water and at the same time we fail to even become aware of the true goal o f life. If in case we are even aware of it, very rarely is some one able to free oneself of this net of Maya and realise Ishwara as the very Self. Maya is not only the power of God at the cosmic level but we all have the power of creation. It is with this power of maya or imagination that we create our dream world. We present a world that did not exist. We are the Masters of it, this dream world is our creation, we sustain it and it then gets dissolved within us. We have an inherent pottential to create anything we wish to. The Jagat at large is also a big dream at the cosmic level in the mind of the creator-Brahmaji. Vedanta has this very unique theory of creation. Even the modern day scientists are fascinated and amazed by the unique vision presented by our Vedic Rishis. In the world of science it has always been a subject of continuous study trying to understand how the world was created. The Big bang theory, the recent researches going on to find out the God particle, trying to understand what in the begining created this world. In fact scientists too have come close to speaking about a theory of singularity or a power which is inexplicable. Vedas have long before spoken about Maya being the inexplicable power of Ishwara. A power which presents the world but which cannot be described or categorized in words. It brings about a presentation which even though appears to be there and yet does not truly exist. In this verse of the Gita Sri Krishna at the level of Ishwara says this wielding power is my Maya Shakti. The Glorious power of Maya has threefold modifications: The power of Maya is in the form of three modifications or ‘Gunas’. Sattva, Rajas and Tamas. Sattva guna reflects purity, knowledge and selflessness. Rajas reflects self-centric activity and predomination of constantly doing something and accomplishing worldly goals. This tendency gives birth to various negativities of individual likes & dislikes, self-centricity, ego, desires, anger etc. Tamas is the third guna which reflects disenthusiasm, dullness and inactivity towards the self and others. All in all the entire world and all its living beings and non-living beings are a multiplicity of different permutations and combinations of these three gunas alone. All the three gunas have the power to bind us. Tamas binds us in dullness and inactivity, Rajas in self-centricity and hyper-activity and Sattva too binds us by attachment with righteous actions, practises of rituals, sadhanas, and worship towards forms of God. Vedanta Sandesh

When we see

maya as the effect of

God then the priority

changes. The creation is not the be all

and end all, one must see the signature of

god in the whole creation..

Maya has its own beauty and lessons to give: There is no doubt that world created by the Lord’s Maya is indeed beautiful and mesmerising. Such is the beauty of this world and its experiences that Maya has become synonymous to bondage. It is believed that living in this world and enjoying the countless presentations of this world of Maya inevitabely invites bondage. But this is not so. Our Rishis and scriptures give us a totally different vision of living in this world just like a lotus lives in water and yet is totally untouched by it. That is why the scriptures speak of liberation here and now when the person is amidst this magical creation of Maya. The Upanishads do not entertain a posthamous liberation as a goal of life. But they give us a vision of knowledge hwerein we live not as slaves of Maya but as its Master. Maya is not a power to fear but it is a power to wield with one’s own freedom with a sense of fulfillment. So in the first place a wise person looks at this worldly creation appreciating the beauty of the world created by God and his Maya Shakti and learning the right lessons. One is deluded when one does not learn the right lessons and gets attached n identified with the objective world, its relationships, money, fame etc. There should be a thoughtfulness and observation when being involved in the world of maya. There should be an inquisitiveness to know the truth and not follow blindly. The truth about Maya is that it is not independant and cannot create on its own. A divine power wields his Maya shakti and he alone sustains and destroys it. Secondly anything created in the realm of Maya is inert and appears to be there for sometime. Its fascinating light is like the lightening in the sky, extremely bright and equally momentary. Overcoming Maya: As mentioned Maya does not have an independant existence. Maya should be seen as an effect of God himself. In this verse Sri Krishna says the one who surrenders to me alone overcomes Maya. When we see maya as the effect of God then the priority changes. The creation is not the be all and end all, one must see the signature of god in the whole creation. When somebody has cooked delicious food we cannot ignore the one who has made all the food. It is only when we get carried away with the objective world and its sensory pleasures to the extent that we ignore the its creator and sustainer, then alone we are deluded by Maya and for such a person it is extremely difficult to overcome this mesmerisation and cross Maya. Focusing on god does not mean having an ishta devata and worshiping him all the time.It means to be able to see god in and through everything that we see, eat, do, give etc. It is to see him as the giver of fruits of actions. All aspects of our life have the signature of god. We see him function quitely, compassionately without any expectation. Thus having immense gratitude for everything bestowed upon us. Bring about this fragrance in life and you will overcome maya. Starting our spiritual journey from here fromwe will go into the depths of god and realize the ultimate truth of seeing God and his Maya shakti as our very own Self. The implication of crossing Maya or overcoming the influence of Maya then translates as being liberated here and now. Living like a lotus in water. - 11 -

Believe What You Feel

On this day, Morrie says that he has an exercise for us to try. We are to stand, facing away from our classmates, and fall backward, relying on another student to catch us. Most of us are uncomfortable with this, and we cannot let go for more than a few inches before stopping ourselves. We laugh in embarrassment.

Finally, one student, a thin, quiet, dark-haired girl whom I notice almost always wears bulky, white fisherman sweaters, crosses her arms over her chest, closes her eyes, leans back, and does not flinch, like one of those Lipton tea commercials where the model splashes into the pool.. For a moment, I am sure she is going to thump on the floor. At the last instant, her assigned partner grabs her head and shoulders and yanks her up harshly.

"Whoa!!" several students yell. Some clap. Morrie finally smiles. "You see", he says to the girl, 'you closed your eyes, That was the difference. Sometimes you cannot believe what you see, you have to believe what you feel. And if you are ever going to have other people trust you, you must feel that you can trust them too - even when you're in the dark. Even when you're falling".

Vedanta Sandesh

Wandering in Himalayas His mind thus turned away from wealth and pleasure and learnt to

despise kingship and its paraphernalia. His mind rose to the most intense


state of vairagya, and he resolved to renounce everything and become a

sannyasin. In an assembly where his brothers like Bhima, comrades like Krishna, and Teachers like Vyasa were present, he announced his inten-

tion to retire to the forest and there give up his body in penance. Bhima and the other brothers objected. They argued: “If, by sheer renunciation, a king could reach his goal, then even the mountains and trees which have no desires of their own must reach the goal still more easily.”

Yudhishthira answered them logically, quoting the Vedas; yet, be-

cause he could not reject the affectionate advice of Krishna and Vyasa, he had to defer the fulfillment of his wish to a later time. He continued to rule

his kingdom, but in a spirit of perfect detachment. The news of the exter-

mination of the Yadavas as a result of internal strife, and of the passing

away of Lord Krishna, inflamed the old desire that lay smouldering in his breast. He decided to give up all worldly activities and soon set out on the

Excerpts from the

Travel Memoirs of

Param Poojya Swami

Tapovanji Maharaj

final journey. His brothers and Draupadi followed him. they moved further North through the heart of the Himalayas.

They had left Badrikashram behind, when BHima cried out, “Alas!

Draupadi has dropped down on the way.”

Yudhishthira neither stopped nor turned; he just said, “That is be-

cause of her partiality for Arjuna,” and passed on.

A little later Bhima reported the fall of Sahadev, “That is because of

his pride in his wisdom,” said Yudhishthira quietly and moved on.

Thus, one by one, all the brothers fell, and Yudhishthira, in intense

loneliness, made his way forward, over rock and snow without once turning back. Just think of his vairagya, his courage and heroism! Let us now follow the route he persued on the great journey. - 13 -


Swamini Vidyananda

The one never becomes many, - when many candles are kindled from

another, it is the same flame which burns in all candles. Same way, one Brahman

appears to be many. As so many candles, the flame of Brahman shines in everyone’s heart. It is the same light, be it me, a child, husband or wife, bird or

flower. When one contemplates the unreality of this diversity, and sees the underlying reality behind all various forms, he is freed from sorrow.

Jiva is nothing but the imaginary limitation in consciousness, and when,

with contemplation, this limitation goes, there is peace. What is the world and

what is the jiva? They are nothing but appearances, just like two tongues of the same fire - one small and one big. They may appear as different from each other, but it is the same

fire. On account of the

many, and the

pure Consciousness

agitation in the appears

mind, one is seen as


become the object of

knowledge, like

in drinking slumber one

sees all kinds of

phantasms in the empty

whirling around.

Then there arise in the




mind all kinds of

false notions like “I am

born”, “my name

is so and so”, “I live in

This knowledge

is not different from the

such and such

Adhyatmic Teachings of Guru Vasishtha to Sri Ramji


city”, “I have family” etc.

mind itself, - they

all are ignorance or

as ignorance and

delusion only, upon the

delusion only.

They are seen as such,

right enquiry.

To rid oneself of this disease of the world and little “I”, one need to give up

liquor of various notions, become sober and seek wise counsel. There is no other remedy for this disease but wisdom, or self-knowledge, which can be given by the competent guru only. Knowledge alone is the cure for the false perception of the

multiplicity of the world, like only by recognizing the rope behind wrongly perceived snake, one is cured from fear of a snake-bite. When there is such knowledge, the mind understands the unreality of the world. And it loses its desires and cravings for the things outside, loses the taste for sense-pleasures, which only aggravate the ignorance.

Vedanta Sandesh

When there are no objects and ideas in the mind, then there is no movement

of thought in the mind. When there is no movement, the world appearance as

separate reality ceases. The movement of notions and ideas creates the jiva, it itself is called jiva, cause and action, and it is the seed of the world-appearance.

Everyone can be freed from this movement of thoughts in just one life-time,

and someone else is freed in thousands of births. This movement creates wrong

notions and the wrong notions as if cover the truth of the sole undivided reality. But when this truth is seen and recognized as such, nothing whatsoever can hide it. It is recognized in and through everything, and mistake of taking the notions of the

world or “I” for being real is never again repeated. The same light is seen in all appearances, and the world becomes the manifestation of the joyous love and

bliss, everything being the same light of the pure Sat-Chit-Ananda, or manifestation of the same Existence, Consciousness and Bliss. Having recognized it properly

once, it can never again be hidden from the view - everything is full of Sat-ChitAnanda and everything is Sat-Chit-Ananda only! And in every blade of grass, in every flower and in every smile and appearance we recognize our own Self, which

is also the Self of all, and which is Shiva - “Chid-ananda rupah, Shivo’ham, Shivo’ham”.

Diwali is celebrated for various great & worthy reasons. In Vedic era it was celebrated as the day to pay our respects to ‘Yama-Raj’. He is not only the God of Death, but is also the king of Pitra Loka, where our forefathers reside. As a respect for Lord Yama, a lamp is lighted and was kept in front of our houses. Yamaraj is also called Dharmaraj. He is an embodiment of righteousness, Dharma, and is also an embodiment of Knowledge. Yamaraj is someone who performs his highly important, but often thankless duty of taking us to the realms beyond - without any fears or favors, likes or dislikes, in an absolutely astounding manner. Lord of Death alone is the one who gave the very famous upadesha of the 'Secrets of Life & Death' to the young Nachiketas, in the famous discourse of 'Kathopanishad'. May we remind our readers that Kathopanishad is considered as the source book or mother of the famous Srimad Bhagwad Gita. -7-

Quotes Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything. Change before you have to. When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves.

To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often. If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.

Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some

other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.

If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.

Miracles happen everyday, change your perception of what a miracle is and you'll see them all around you.

Vedanta Sandesh

The Legend of Pitru Paksha Story Section

n o p u e c O n e ... m a ti

One of the very important personalities of Mahabharata, Karn ( the son of

Kunti-Surya and supposedly brother-like to Pandavas) who is fondly remembered as “Daanveer Karn” made lots of charity in form of jewels, money and lands. When he died and ascended to heaven, he got all that he gave in form of charity in multiples.

But, he didn’t get food as he did not give food-charity. He starved for days

and finally asked the “Yamaraj” if he could get a chance to make for this deficiency. Yamaraj allowed him and granted a period of 14 days to go back to the

earth and make for it. These 14 days were used by Karan to give numerous food-charities and he also offered Shradh to his ancestors.

When he finally returned back to the heaven, there was plenty of food

available to him.

Thus, in Hindus, it is considered very auspicious to donate food in form of

Shradh to poor, as whatever donated is supposed to reach directly to one’s ancestors. During these days and especially on the day of new moon it is believed

that the soul of the dead ones (Atmas), are permitted by Yamaraj to reach earth and receive the benefits of these rites from their children.

The Scriptures reveal that “The soul never dies”, it only transforms from

one external form (body) to another. Thus it is believed that in whatever form our ancestors exist, the charity during this time surely reaches them.

The sons performing the rites of Pitru Paksha are free of any Pitr dosh

and are eligible for Pitr lok. It lasts for a fortnight and the day to perform the rituals depend on the Tithi, calculated according to the Hindu calendar.

In southern and western India, it falls in the Hindu lunar month of

Bhadrapada (September–October), beginning with the full moon day (Purnima) that occurs immediately after the Ganesh festival and ending with the new moon

day known as Sarvapitri amavasya, Pitru Amavasya, Peddala Amavasya, Mahalaya amavasya or simply Mahalaya. Most years, the autumnal equinox falls within this period, i.e. the Sun transitions from the northern to the southern hemisphere during this period. In North India and Nepal, this period corresponds to the dark fortnight of the month Ashvin, instead of Bhadrapada.

- 17 -

Vedanta Sandesh

Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji conducted a week-long ‘Gita Gyana Yagna’ at Hari om Mandir Lucknow from 4th to 10th Oct. The subject matters for the morning & evening discourses were: Kaivalyopanishad & Gita Chapter 8. The program was nicely attended, and on the last day a Bhandara was organized by the Mandir authorities for all the devotees. The 23rd Sanyas Deeksha Day of Poojya Guruji was celebrated at Vedanta Ashram with sraddha & devotion. Early morning Poojya Guruji did the Rudrabhisheka of Bhagwan Sri Gangeshwar Mahadev himself, and later in the evening a ‘Bhajan & Bhojan’ program was organized for the devotees. The evening program started with prayers and bhajans. Later Poojya Guruji enlightened everyone about the significance of Sanyas Ashram in our religion & tradition. Later everyone had prasad. Vedanta Ashram completed its twenty years of existence on the Vijaya Dashami day which this year was on the 22nd Oct. A lovely altar was made & decorated for the occasion and all the Mahatmas did Shivnama Archana with 108 names. Stotras were chanted and the objectives of Vedanta Ashram were brought to mind, which continue to inspire us and everyone re-dedicated themselves to them. On 25th Oct was the last Sunday of the month, and thus was the day of the monthly Hanuman Chalisa Satsang. Fresh after celebrating Navratras & Dusshera the devotees gathered for the monthly event. Poojya Guruji briefly summarized the last pravachan and then continued further to reveal the significance of the word ‘Tej’ in the 2nd line of the chaupayi ‘Tej pratap sakal Jagvandan’. Later there was aarti & prasad. On her way to conduct a week=long ‘Gita Gyana Yagna’ at Ramdas Ashram, Bhavnagar, Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji first stopped at Vadodara and inaugurated a Meditation Room at the Atmajyoti Ashram there. This was a room of the Mahatmaji who established the Ashram. She spoke on the significance of ‘Japa & Dhyana’. Later at Bhavnagar she conducted two discourses a day from 25th to 31st Oct - on Bhagwad Gita Chapter 8 and Kaivalyopanishad. On her way back to Indore, another Satsang was organized at Vadodara, at the residence of Sh Ajitbhai Kalaria. - 19 -

By Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji at Hari om Mandir, Lucknow Subs: Gita-8 & Kaivalyopanishad - from 4th to 10th Oct 2015

Devotees celebrated the Sanyas Deeksha Day of Poojya Guruji with sraddha & devotion - on 10th Oct

Vedanta Sandesh

by Poojya Swamini Poornanandaji at Dutta Mandir, Jalgaon - 9th to 15th Sept. Gita-5 and Katho 2-2

Bhajans, Chanting & Pravachan of & on Hanuman Chalisa by Poojya Guruji - 25th Oct at Ashram

Inauguration of Meditation Hall at Vadodara / Gita Gyana Yagna at Bhavnagar - 25th to 31st Oct

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Fear of Death A man was once crossing a river in a boat. As the water lapped in the sides of the boat, it created a pleasant sensation. The man felt cheerful and condescendingly asked the boatman. “My good man, what was your father’s occupation? “He was a boatman, sir.” “And your grandfather?” “He also ferried a boat, sir.” “Are there many accidents on the river?” “Sometimes there are, My father died in such an accident and so did my grandfather.” The man looked at the boatman wonderingly and asked, “My dear man, both your father and grandfather died in both accidents, Are you not afraid of ferrying a boat?” The boatman smiled and asked, “Sir, where did your father die?” “He died while asleep in bed,” replied the man. “And your grandfather?” “He also died in bed.” The boatman asked, “Sir, your father and grandfather both died while sleeping. Are you not afraid of sleeping in bed?”

Vedanta Sandesh

Hanuman Chalisa Satsang / Bhandara at Ashram, Indore :

The Nov edition of monthly‘Hanuman Chalisa Satsang’ will be organized on 15th

Nov, due to preoccupation of P.Guruji on the 29th. This day is also the birthday of P.Swamini Samatanandaji , so bhandara also is being organized for all the devotees.

Gita Gyana Yagna, Indore :

A week-long Gita Gyana Yagna by Poojya Guruji Sri Swami Atmanandaji has

been planned to be organized at the Main Hall of Hindi Sahitya Samiti Sabhagruh, RNT Marg, Indore from 23rd to 29th Nov. Subs: Gita-3.

Gita Gyana Yagna, Lucknow :

A week-long Gita Gyana Yagna by P. Swamini Samatanandaji will be organized at

Ramnaam Bank Community Hall, SBI Colony, Lucknow from 27th Nov to 3rd Dec. Subs: Gita-1 / Tattva Bodha.

Gita Gyana Yagna, Mumbai :

A six days long Gita Gyana Yagna by Poojya Guruji Swami Atmanandaji will be

organized at Ramkrishna Math Campus in Khar, Mumbai from 7th to 12th Dec. The subject matter of the proposed discourses will be Gita-13 / Mundakopanishad 3-1.

The annual musical program organized by the Indian Cultural Foundation, Mumbai

will be organized on 6th Dec, this time at the Vivekananda Hall in the RK Math Campus.

Salil Sandhya, Indore :

On 15th Dec, the birthday of Poojya Guruji, the annual Salil Sandhya will be

organized. Apart from the Flute recital, there will be Bhandara for all.

Gita Jayanti, Indore :

On 21st Dec is the Mokshad Ekadashi - the Gita Jayanti. The Ashramites and its

devotees shall chant the entire Bhagwad Gita on that day.

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International Vedanta Mission

Vedanta Mission Blog:

Indian Cultural Foundation

Earlier ‘Vedanta Sandesh’ issues

Om Tat Sat

VedantaSandesh Nov15  

Nov 2015 issue of Vedanta Sandesh, the English monthly eMagazine of International Vedanta Mission, containing inspiring and enlightening art...

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