An Ayudha when used in Ayudha puja is a literal weapon,and not supposed to be anything else

Vayuna:…during Navarati the focus is on Sarasvati here and then each temple will have its own festival days

Devala: Why Sarasvatī?

Vayuna: The only part of Navaratri that is celebrated in KL is the last three days. Ayudha Puja basically and Sarasvati is the Devi that is worshipped.

Devala: Sarasvati is invoked in aydhas?Here,we celebrate Mahalaya+from shashthi onwards

Vayuna: Well the modern equivalents that the students keep. Books.

Devala: Books aren’t Ayudhas. What they call Vasant Panchami in North India is explicitly Sarasvati Puja here.

Vayuna: That is how the tradition came out to be here. Some keep pen also. Of course the farmers keep their instruments and factories their machinery

Devala: Vishvakarma Puja is the day for that(keeping instruments,machinery,etc). It’s the wrong day[for instrument pūjā].Also Skanda Purana I think explicitly spells out the procedure to worship Sarasvatī that day(on Vasant Panchami/Sarasvati Puja).

Vayuna: Here everything is conducted on the last three days[of Navaratri]. We keep the books on the evening of the eighth day and take them back on the morning of the 10th after puja.

Devala: But tools are worshipped in Vishvakarma Puja!As for Ayudhas…even a damn humble lathi will do!

Vayuna: Here its explained away as metaphorical. The knowledge in the books is the weapon.

Devala: Of course. I’ve also seen those explanations,but it is a wrong one.When days specially for sarasvatī(books/related stuff) and viśvakarmā(tools/related stuff) exist,the day for Ayudha Puja implies nothing but literal Ayudhas. What I am objecting to is the abuse of metaphor. By the way,Vishvakarma Puja falls on the last date of Bhadra in the Bengali calendar(basically,the last day of Bhadra on Sauramana calendars is supposed to be Vishvakarma Puja). And Sarasvatī Pūjā/Vasanta Pañcamī falls on the śuklapakṣa pañcamī of the Chandramana month of Māgha.

Vayuna: Well in a sense the metaphorical explanation works. Only the second varṇa has actual āyudhas. The others take it up as āpad-dharma.What āyudha does a brāhmaṇa have or a farmer or brahmacāri/student or artisan have except his tools?

Devala: Others too had it. Please note the cases listed here by a friend. And Medhatithi was not really having Muslims in mind. And in many cases,people from all varṇas ultimately did join armies. Call it āpaddharma or whatever.

Vayuna: Well yes,functionally most Nairs were of the second varṇa…as were a few Ezhavas. And yes yes ayudhas for self-defense should get more popular among Hindus. Ideally it would have made sense for only soldiers to worship Ayudhas. But since we are in Kali yuga and surrounded, everyone needs to do that.

Devala: Even Medhatithi recognized the need for weapons amongst the common folk. And I’m not even insisting on guns (though that’s a minimum). At least a humble lathi. We did have martial arts/traditions involving lathis alone.

 

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Aspects of Hindu atheism

Note:In this post,I am not going to consider Savarkar’s position. Having put that out of the way,let me put it out:In the classical darśanas of Hindu philosophy,not all of them accept an Īśvara,yes(a supreme God),but all of them were āstika,not nāstika(accepted the Veda as pramāṇa in some format or the other-at least accepting the śruti  and allied traditions as śabda uttered by an āpta). And the allied traditions of sāṃkhya and yoga accept the realms of devas,with the sutrakara in the third pada of the Yogasutras saying ‘jñāne sūrye saṃyamāt’ and the various commentators describing the knowledge of the realms of the devas which is gained in the method referred to in this sutra. Vaiśeṣika/Nyaya too end up taking the praxis of yoga for soiterological purposes,so nothing more needs to be said here,and Vaiśeṣika too admits the importance of the Veda. Purva Mimāṃsā may not accept an Īśvara,but its atheism is more of the ‘ackschually,there are no separate devatas apart from the mantra and the ritual.The deity is the mantra’ sort of thinking. And as to the position of Īśvara in Śaṇkarādvaita,this article explains it very nicely. I need not talk about the various other Vedantic schools.

Most people who take up the ‘Hindu atheist’ label are basically cowards who are too ashamed to admit that all their traditions spoke of devatās(regardless of whether they were capable of giving all the goals sought by their traditions or not). Not a single one of them denied the existence of devatās.

Gṛhastha life and vedānta (focusing on Advaita here)

 

 

 

This thread and the succeeding comments made me remember the small notes from an orthodox sannyāsin and a friend of mine,and I am putting them in a jumbled form here.

So,in orthodox circles,there are three commentaries on the Gītā that are famous.

  1. Ādi Śaṅkara’s commentary-corresponds to śravana
  2. Madhusudanasarasvatī’s commentary-corresponds to manana
  3. Shankarananda’s commentary-corresponds to nidhidhyānsana(and these are studied in that order).

So, Śaṅkarānanda in his commentary on the 3rd chapter of the Gita states that a brāhmaṇa should not renounce until he has fulfilled the three ṛṇas(debts).

  1. Deva-ṛṇa(debt to the devas) by performing yāgas as laid out in the śruti
  2. Ṛṣirṇa(debt to the ṛṣis) by doing vedādhyayanam of svaśākhā and other vedas
  3. Pitṛ ṛṇa(debt to the forefathers) by begetting a child legitimately [and obviously raising him/her properly and so on and so forth]

As a note:On asking that friend,he suggested(for caturthas),the ṛṇas would be discharged as

  1. Deva-ṛṇa-worship devas through the paddhatis available(paurāṇika/tāntrika)
  2. Ṛṣirṇa-propagate vedāṇgas/itihāsa/tantra
  3. Pitṛ ṛṇa-same as the one for dvijas

(Note:This doesn’t mean that brāhmaṇas/other dvijas cannot pass on tāntrika/itihāsa/other lore)

So,the tradition already has the solution within itself,and it needs to be revitalized.

 

Also,what Bajirao did would be quite inappropriate from an Advaitin’s point of view. Śrīdharasvāmīn in his gloss on the very first śloka states

‘iha khalu sakalavanditacaraṇaḥ paramakāruṇuko bhagavān devakīnandanastattvajñānavijṛmbhita-śokamohavibhraṃśita-vivekatayā nijadharmaparityāga-pūrvakaparadharmābhisandhinamarjunaṃ dharmajñānarahasyopadeśaplavena tasmācchokamohasāgaraāduddhāraḥ|..’

 

A short summary(with emphasis on the bolded words would be that the ever-worshippable Śrī Kṛṣṇa rescued Arjuna from the sea of sorrow and delusion,under whose influence he was about to give up his own svadharma(of a warrior and ruler) and take up another’s dharma(that of an ascetic) by imparting to him, jṇānarahasyopadeśa. The Peshva had committed that same mistake Arjuna had done(maybe due to a different cause),and could hardly be said to be upholding vedantic ideals.

A Pāñcarātrika macranthrophic hymn to Viṣṇu(the hymn to the Mahāpuruṣa)

. (Śrīmadbhāgavata Purāṇa 12.11-1-26)

śrī-śaunaka uvāca
athemam arthaṁ pṛcchāmo
bhavantaṁ bahu-vittamam
samasta-tantra-rāddhānte
bhavān bhāgavata tattva-vit
tāntrikāḥ paricaryāyāṁ
kevalasya śriyaḥ pateḥ
aṅgopāṅgāyudhākalpaṁ
kalpayanti yathā ca yaiḥ
tan no varṇaya bhadraṁ te
kriyā-yogaṁ bubhutsatām
yena kriyā-naipuṇena
martyo yāyād amartyatām
sūta uvāca
namaskṛtya gurūn vakṣye
vibhūtīr vaiṣṇavīr api
yāḥ proktā veda-tantrābhyām
ācāryaiḥ padmajādibhiḥ
māyādyair navabhis tattvaiḥ
sa vikāra-mayo virāṭ
nirmito dṛśyate yatra
sa-citke bhuvana-trayam
etad vai pauruṣaṁ rūpaṁ
bhūḥ pādau dyauḥ śiro nabhaḥ
nābhiḥ sūryo ’kṣiṇī nāse
vāyuḥ karṇau diśaḥ prabhoḥ
prajāpatiḥ prajananam
apāno mṛtyur īśituḥ
tad-bāhavo loka-pālā
manaś candro bhruvau yamaḥ
lajjottaro ’dharo lobho
dantā jyotsnā smayo bhramaḥ
romāṇi bhūruhā bhūmno
meghāḥ puruṣa-mūrdhajāḥ
yāvān ayaṁ vai puruṣo
yāvatyā saṁsthayā mitaḥ
tāvān asāv api mahā-
puruṣo loka-saṁsthayā
kaustubha-vyapadeśena
svātma-jyotir bibharty ajaḥ
tat-prabhā vyāpinī sākṣāt
śrīvatsam urasā vibhuḥ
sva-māyāṁ vana-mālākhyāṁ
nānā-guṇa-mayīṁ dadhat
vāsaś chando-mayaṁ pītaṁ
brahma-sūtraṁ tri-vṛt svaram
bibharti sāṅkhyaṁ yogaṁ ca
devo makara-kuṇḍale
mauliṁ padaṁ pārameṣṭhyaṁ
sarva-lokābhayaṅ-karam
avyākṛtam anantākhyam
āsanaṁ yad-adhiṣṭhitaḥ
dharma-jñānādibhir yuktaṁ
sattvaṁ padmam ihocyate
ojaḥ-saho-bala-yutaṁ
mukhya-tattvaṁ gadāṁ dadhat
apāṁ tattvaṁ dara-varaṁ
tejas-tattvaṁ sudarśanam
nabho-nibhaṁ nabhas-tattvam
asiṁ carma tamo-mayam
kāla-rūpaṁ dhanuḥ śārṅgaṁ
tathā karma-mayeṣudhim
indriyāṇi śarān āhur
ākūtīr asya syandanam
tan-mātrāṇy asyābhivyaktiṁ
mudrayārtha-kriyātmatām
maṇḍalaṁ deva-yajanaṁ
dīkṣā saṁskāra ātmanaḥ
paricaryā bhagavata
ātmano durita-kṣayaḥ
bhagavān bhaga-śabdārthaṁ
līlā-kamalam udvahan
dharmaṁ yaśaś ca bhagavāṁś
cāmara-vyajane ’bhajat
vāsudevaḥ saṅkarṣaṇaḥ
pradyumnaḥ puruṣaḥ svayam
aniruddha iti brahman
mūrti-vyūho ’bhidhīyate
sa viśvas taijasaḥ prājñas
turīya iti vṛttibhiḥ
arthendriyāśaya-jñānair
bhagavān paribhāvyate
aṅgopāṅgāyudhākalpair
bhagavāṁs tac catuṣṭayam
bibharti sma catur-mūrtir
bhagavān harir īśvaraḥ
dvija-ṛṣabha sa eṣa brahma-yoniḥ svayaṁ-dṛk
sva-mahima-paripūrṇo māyayā ca svayaitat
sṛjati harati pātīty ākhyayānāvṛtākṣo
vivṛta iva niruktas tat-parair ātma-labhyaḥ
The Phalaśruti comes in the next śloka
ya idaṁ kalya utthāya
mahā-puruṣa-lakṣaṇam
tac-cittaḥ prayato japtvā
brahma veda guhāśayam

Pramathanath Mitra -a reminiscience and a lesson needed

So I decided to translate the article linked here,a reminiscence on a founder of the Anushilan Samiti for a friend[archived),and I am now putting this translation(paraphrased a bit here and there) here.

Sri Pramathnath Mitra,one of the supreme founding members of the Anushilan Samiti was an upAsaka of shakti and concerned himself with [physical] strength as well rigorously. He was one of the strongest men amongst Hindu Bengali society of that time. His sole aim was a martial(sAmarika sikShAya sikShita) cadre/race of Bengalis(jAti),and that is why the Anushilan Samiti and the Jugantar(the two fearsome militaristic revolutionary organizations set up and run by Bengali Hindus),from the very moment of its founding(prathama lagna thekei),were clothed with militarism and shakti-bodliy(daihik),mentally(mAnasik),and in character(chAriktrik). Before founding the Anushilan Samiti,in the daily The Bengali(which was edited by Surendranath Banerjee),he wrote an essay on the martial art of lathi khela,and spoke about the need to cultivate a fighting spirit amongst the youth of Bengal.He was a follower of Bankim,and he said this:

“The lathi is the national weapon of Bengal. A Bengalee lathial, properly trained, can with his single lathi keep a dozen of swordsmen at bay.

It is a healthy outdoor exercise. As an art of offence and defence it combines in itself the skill required, in the bayonet exercise and the sword exercise. It gives full play to the exercise of muscles. It necessitates the cultivation of the quickness of the eye and quickness of the movement of every limb, which is a very favourable growth of the resourcefulness, activity of the body, strength of muscle and sinew and keenness of the observation and above all, it inspires confidence in its possessor. It is a purely national art and inexpensive. We should be unwise if we allow it to die away from our midst”.

Even if it was a hundred years ago,what he said still remains a firm truth,and the aim of the Anushilan Samiti is yet unfulfilled[my personal note:Was actually subverted].The Bengali Hindus in 1947 were broken like the Jews,but yet they could not rise up like an Israel anew because they did not follow the path of their very strong/powerful predecessors due to their weakness,and didn’t even attempt to,and instead has gone being like a beggar(bhikhiri),at the expense of others.A beggar has no respect,and he is enjoyable by everyone(ie,everyone makes fun of him/pities him).

Bengali Hindu society has now become like a whore,who will sell off all that is dear to her(j~nAna,buddhi,vidyA,etc) for money(ie,the highest bidder). But she has to live. So,then,what to do?(here I’ve been literal-ish,but I am not able to convey the sense adequately).

If Bengali Hindu society is to survive,it must transform from an amiable-tempered society(sushIl samAj) to a martial society(sAmarik samAj).Let them suffer as many belts or firing squads by the mlecchas,who cares?Discipline and the fear factor should be instilled firmly into the Bengali mind…so…back to basics.

 

Tulasi devi , as drawn by Ganapati Sthapati

maxresdefault

 

vṛndāyai tulasidevyai priyāyai keśavāya ca|
kṛṣṇabhakti prade devī satyavatyai namo namaḥ||

Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 5.38.37 pm

 

Her dhyāna śloka has been given elsehwhere

dhyAyechcha tulasIM devIM shyAmAM kamala-lochanAM | prasannAM padmakahlAra-varAbhaya-chatur-bhujAM ||1||
kirITa-hAra-keyUra-kuNDalAdi-vibhUShitAM | dhavalAM shuka-saMyuktAM padmAsana-niSheduShIM ||2|| (shyAma varNaH)

On the decline of Shaiva Siddhanta

There are three main aspects of the decline of Śaiva siddhānta tāntrika systems and confining it to mainly the Tamil lands

 

  1. Loss of patronage in the North due to Muslim invasions+active iconoclasm by them.The last rulers who could do this(patronage) to some extent in the North would be the family in which Rani Durgavati married in.
  2. When Vijayanagara came to power,it elevated the Telugu smārta-s and disenfranchised the Ādiśaivas(replacing them with Telugu brāhmaṇas).
  3. After the very brief revival it enjoyed due to people like Arumuga Navalar,it became a tool in the hands of Dravidianist ideologues who distorted it out of it contexts.

However,the works of Sekkizhar,and the works of Sundarar and Nambiyandar Nambi ensured that the system survived in the popular devotional consciousness in those lands even after their patronage declined.

The tale of Satyakāma Jabala as seen by traditionalists

From an acquaintance’s posts here

 

Rajarshi Nandy:

The Chandogya Upanishad mentions this incident. The boy came to Gauthama
Rishi for knowledge and the Rishi asked him for his gotra. The boy goes back
to his mother and finds out that his mother is not aware of who the father
was. The boy comes back and says the same to Rishi Guathama, who says that
he shall teach the boy as the boy belongs to the gotra of truth, and thus by
default is a Brahmana.

“Thereupon the boy went to Gautama and asked to be accepted as a student.
‘Of what family are you, my lad?’ inquired the sage. Satyakama replied: ‘I
asked my mother what my family name was, and she answered: “I do not know.
In my youth I was a servant and worked in many places. I do not know who was
your father. I am Jabala, and you are Satyakama. Call yourself Satyakama
Jabala!” I am therefore Satyakama Jabala, sir.’ Then said the sage: ‘None
but a true Brahmin would have spoken thus. Go and fetch fuel, for I will
teach you. You have not swerved from the truth.'” (Chandogya Upanishad
4:4:3,4)

So that is one sure shot, explicit case, where a Rishi shows that the tag
Brahmin is more by action than by birth.

Ajit Krishnan:

This is a popular misconception. Satyakama asks his mother this
question upfront. The mother does not know her child’s gotra. Why? In
olden days, women married young, and did not ask questions such as
“Who are you? What is your gotra?” to their husband. (In some areas,
this is still taboo today.) Over time, the gotra would be repeated
during various samskara’s, she would naturally remember it. The
conclusion here is that her husband, whom she served with devotion,
died young.

The seers were tri-kAla-darshi-s. Gautama knew of his boy’s pedigree
before asking him the question. After hearing his answer, he says “A
non-brahmin could not have said this . . . you have not swerved from
the truth”. “satyam” is explained as “brAhmaNa-jAti-dharma”.

First, you have a jAti-brAhmaNa who desires to go to a preceptor, on
his own, during childhood. He then answers the preceptor’s question
truthfully, in his mother’s own words, without embellishment. This is
a very rare set of events. Of course the acharyA sees the worthy
student in front of him.

Rajarshi Nandy:

I do not agree to this analysis of the incident.

Ajit Krishnan:

You are certainly welcome to your opinions. However, the view I shared
is the traditional one, and it makes quite a bit of sense to me. I am
content with the traditional understanding, which shows this woman as
a pativrata. In the famed 3-volume set “Upanishad Bhashyam”, the
editor, Sri S.N.Sastri has a very lengthly footnote on the subject.
Those who are interested can go through it.

Narasimha Rao

Dear Ajit,

I am really sorry, but I have to disagree with you in this issue.

With due respect to you and Sri S.N. Sastri, I must say that Rajarshi’s view
is far more accurate and truthful to the scripture. In fact, Swami
Vivekananda also shared exactly the same view (i.e. Rajarshi’s view) when
commenting on this story from Chhaandogypanishad!

* * *

The specific line where mother Jabaalaa tells son Satyakaama about his gotra
in Chandogyopanishad is:

“naahametadveda taata yadgotrastvamasi bahvaham charantii parichaariNii
yauvane tvaamalabhe saahametanna veda yadgotrastvamasi” (chhaandogyopaniShad
4.4.2)

Literal meaning word to word is: taata = son, aham = I, na veda = not know,
etat = that, yat = which, gotras = gotra, tvam = you, asi = are, aham = I,
charantii = moving, bahu = a lot, parichaariNii = servant maid, yauvane = in
youth, tvaam = you, alabhe = got, saaham = thus I, na veda = not know, etat
= that, yat = which, gotras = gotra, tvam = you, asi = are.

Literal translation without any interpretation (or spin) is:

“Son, I do not which gotra you are. I was a servant maid moving a lot in
youth when I got you. Thus, I do not know which gotra you are.”

* * *

Now, I cannot reconcile Sri S.N. Sastri’s interpretation with the above at
all. Even today, in this deep Kali yuga, Brahmins do find out the gotra
before marriage and avoid marrying people from the same gotra at any cost. I
find it strange that one would get married without finding gotra in old
days. In any case, there is no reference to such a thing above. There is
also no reference to early death of father. If she did not know the gotra
because her husband died when child was young and she did not ask at the
time of marriage, she would’ve explicitly said that and not say “I was a
servant maid moving a lot in youth when I got you. Thus, I do not know which
gotra you are.” If the true reason is that her husband died young, what is
the relevance of her being a servant maid and her moving a lot? Why would
she mention those irrelevant points and not her husband dying young?

Thus, I cannot support Sri S.N. Sastri’s view at all. It seems quite
far-fetched and motivated to me.

* * *

If one’s conditioned mind cannot accept the fact that a maharshi accepted
the son of a woman who would be considered “fallen” by the moral standards
one is used to, then one would probably try to imagine things, twist the
words of a scripture and give an interpretation that fits with one’s notions
of right and wrong. But then, one would be missing out on the true morals of
the scripture and an opportunity to question and refine one’s pre-exiting
notions of right and wrong…

* * *

Let us say an unmarried woman with good control over senses wanted a child.
Let us say she slept with five men that she liked and respected, with mutual
consent, on five different occasions, not for carnal pleasure, but with the
sole intention of begetting a child with any of them and then raising the
child alone.

Let us say another person (man or woman) slept with the same person that one
is ritually married to, on five different occasions, not with the intention
of begetting a child but just for carnal pleasure (i.e. using birth control
methods).

Which is worse? Which has a higher purpose? Which more adharmik?

* * *

Prevalent rules of morality are there for general guidance. World will sink
into an abyss of chaos and adharma without them and they are definitely
needed. But they are not absolute.

The correct judgment of right and wrong does not always come from the
application of a set of rigid rules. Correct judgment comes only from a
refined and purified mind. Scriptures and actions of rishis and gods
contained in them (and actions of other great souls of recent centuries who
were most likely reincarnations of rishis and gods) are there to clarify and
refine our understanding of what is right and what is wrong. As we
understand more and purify ourselves more, our judgment will become more and
more perfect.

Best regards,
Narasimha

 

Ajit Krishnan

 

Dear Narasimha,

 >I am really sorry, but I have to disagree with you in this issue.

I do not know what there is to be sorry about.

> With due respect to you and Sri S.N. Sastri, I must say that Rajarshi’s view
> is far more accurate and truthful to the scripture. In fact, Swami
> Vivekananda also shared exactly the same view (i.e. Rajarshi’s view) when
> commenting on this story from Chhaandogypanishad!

I mentioned Sri S.N.Sastri’s name, because he has a long 2-page
footnote discussion on the subject, and not to bolster my argument by
association. If I had wished to do the latter, I would have invoked
AdishankarachArya — “paricAriNii paricaranti iti paracaraNa-shiiilA
eva aham paricaraNa-chittatayA gotrAdi-smaraNe mama manaH na abhUt”
and Anandagiri — “punaH tasya uparatatvAt”. According the S.N.Sastri,
Shri Ramanuja and Shri Madhva also subscribed to the same view.

> Now, I cannot reconcile Sri S.N. Sastri’s interpretation with the above at
> all. Even today, in this deep Kali yuga, Brahmins do find out the gotra
> before marriage and avoid marrying people from the same gotra at any cost. I
> find it strange that one would get married without finding gotra in old
> days.

Needless criticism. I obviously conveyed the wrong message — the
argument is that she does not remember her new gotra, and not that she
was never exposed to it. Some things require repeated repetition
before they register. It is quite normal, even today, for brides and
in-laws to be very forgetful (or, more accurately “un-remember-ful”)
of their new gotra.

> If the true reason is that her husband died young, what is
> the relevance of her being a servant maid and her moving a lot? Why would
> she mention those irrelevant points and not her husband dying young?

The points mentioned are not at all irrelevant. It is a partial excuse
/ apology. Her mind was totally occupied in these activities. In her
youth, it did not occur to her to pay attention and remember her
gotra. Narasimha, this is a conversation between mother and son. If
the father died young, it would be well-known, and there would be no
reason for the mother to “disclose” it to her son at this time. When
answering the question, there is simply no need to start reciting the
litany of known facts. On the other hand, the points mentioned are
relevant, since they show her state of mind. It is a natural lament.

> Thus, I cannot support Sri S.N. Sastri’s view at all. It seems quite
> far-fetched and motivated to me.

The first sentence is quite reasonable. To say that it seems
far-fetched to you, is also very reasonable. However, the last
criticism is unfair, and cannot be substantiated. Though I did not
wish to say it, I have the same criticism — I see an attempt to
retrofit a story to result in a desirable conclusion, which would make
for an excellent example.

> If one’s conditioned mind cannot accept the fact that a maharshi accepted
> the son of a woman who would be considered “fallen” by the moral standards

<snipped>

This diatribe is interesting, but irrelevant to this dicussion. I am
happy to accept that this is how maharshis worked. But, this incident
is not a good example. The traditional understanding adds facts which
are not found in the upanishad. However, in my opinion, in this
instance, it fits in quite well.

savinayam praNato.asmi,

ajit

I’ll leave proposed Indian attempts and/or parallels (germinal/actually attempted) as an excercise to the reader

This wasn’t with respect to political activism exactly,but with history-writing,etc. That ideological field.

 

 

 

What not to be done is thus briefly outlined.