AGASTYA COMES TO SOUTH:
The wedding of Siva and Parvathi took place on Mount Kailas. The northern hemisphere swung down, unable to bear the tremendous weight of the great concourse that had assembled to witness the wedding. Lord Siva, therefore, instructed sage Agastya to proceed to the South, so that he might bring about an equilibrium with his weight. (Exp.) Sage Agastya had through yogic practices roused the Kundalini in him and moved it up to the Brahmarandhra. He was, therefore, sent to instruct the South in “the happy path “.
SUPPRESSION OF TYRANNY:
Lord Siva displayed his power of punishment on several occasions. He killed Andakasura who oppressed human beings as well as Devas. Siva killed him with a spear. (Exp.) Audakasura is the personification of evil which is associated with the mind and which oppresses others for gaining its ends. God destroys this evil in each human being.
The Second Tantram gives a brief account of lie puranas, besides explaining their significance in the 1ight of the Saiva Siddhanta system of metaphysics
Consumed with arrogance, God Brahma proclaimed: “I too have five heads. Therefore, I am the Supreme Being “! Siva severed a head from Brahma, and kept its skull in his palm. (Exp.) God scotches the spirit of arrogance in human beings so as to show them the right path.
Siva pulled the heart out of God Vishnu and held the blood in the hollow skull made out of Brahma’s head. (Exp.) God saves humanity from being misled by those who arrogate to themselves all powers and who enforce obedience by force.
Jalantasura tried to kill the very Lord from whom he had received immense power and strength. God drew a circle on the ground with his toe, and used that circle as a chakra to cut down the asura’s head. (Exp.) Blinded by ignorance, human beings seek to hurt even those who have done them good. God in His infinite mercy destroys this evil in man, for, unless so destroyed, the evil spreads and results in universal distress.
The three asuras Kamalan, Kamalakshan and Vidyunmali had three flying fortresses made of gold, silver and iron respectively. Flying on these fortresses, they descended upon towns and villages and burnt and pillaged them. Siva fought with them, destroyed their fortresses, and took them under His protection. (Exp.) The three fortresses represent the three Malas, Anava, Maya, and Karma, which hold the human soul in bondage. God destroys the Malas with a view to liberating the souls.
There lived a sect of rishis called KarmaBrahmavadins in the forest of Daruka who denied the existence of God. They believed that they can achieve their ends through Karma, and that, therefore, Karma is God. When Siva entered the forest of Daruka, the rishis tried to kill Him by setting upon Him, among other things, a ferocious elephant which had arisen from their yagna fire. Siva killed the elephant, skinned it, and draped the skin around his shoulders. (Exp.) God is omnipotent . He is the fire, as well as its flame. He is the yagna, as well as its effect. He is in implicit union with everything, as of substance and quality. He is therefore, indestructible.
Siva kicked and killed Yama, the God of Death, when the latter wanted to take away the life of Markandeya, a great Sivayogi. (Exp.) The Sivayogi, who rouses the Kundalini which lies coiled in the Muladhara and moves it up to the Brahmarandhra, is deathless.
Siva opened the eye on his brow, and the flame that shot out of it burnt Kaman, the God of Love. (Exp.) Man in his youth develops carnal passions which seek fulfilment through sexual union. Such passions are a hindrance to spiritual advancement. And they can be curbed and conquered by yoga through whose aid the Divine Cosmic Energy within, capable of scorching such forces, is roused and fixed in the Brahmarandhra.
Daksha the asura, swelled with power and arrogance, deluded himself into thinking that he was the Absolute Being. He performed an yagna to augment his might. Siva rose from the yagna flames in the form of’ Veerabadhra, cut down Daksha’s head, and fixed up in its stead a goat’s head. (Exp.) Even wise men lose all sense of moderation when invested with vast powers. Power intoxicates their minds. They turn into oppressors, impelled by the delusion that none can restrain their evil deeds. They think that everything they do is right and proper. God in His boundless love promptly chastises pride and arrogance, thus paving the way for a return to sanity.
Goddess Parvathi was born in this world as the daughter of the king of the Himalayas and worshipped Siva. (Exp. Do not frighten yourself into thinking that it is impossible to attain Sivananda. God readily reveals Himself to genuine aspirants.)
King Ravana tried to move Mount Kailas. Siva pressed him under the mountain. Ravana then worshipped Siva and showed genuine repentance and humility. Siva released him and presented him with a sword and other gifts.
When God Vishnu received his famous chakra from Siva, who took out a portion of His strength and gave it to him. Vishnu immediately aimed the chakra against Veerabadhra. The chakra however merely belched fire without causing any injury. (Exp.) God is omniscient. Even as He has the power to endow men with extraordinary strength, He can neutralise it when it is abused. When souls are blinded with arrogance, He displays His love by scotching their arrogance, and thereby assists in their redemption.
At the time of Pralaya (dissolution of the world), Siva alone remains unaffected by the universal destruction. He causes the world to re-emerge from out of the formless primordial stuff into which it dissolved. At the time of dissolution, the world is withdrawn into Siva who projected it. (The world collapses, so to speak, into a mathematical point without any magnitude whatever. This imagery, like all of its kind, is necessarily imperfect; for, such a point, though it has no magnitude is assumed to have a position. Here there is none, for we are in spacelessness. Siva is the Absolute Being as it is He who causes the dissolution which is primary, evolution being but the bringing out of the potentialities inherent in the dissolved or unevolved.)
Creation, as we have seen, is evolution, or coming into being, of that which dissolved into Siva. He causes the world to re-emerge from Maya through the instrumentality of Sakthi with whom He is in implicit union, the union of substance and quality.
Creation occurs when Sakthi (Energy or Power), brought out separately from Siva, rejoins the latter. From out of this re-union of Siva and Sakthi, emerge Nada and Bindu. When Nada and Bindu are even, Sadasivam arises. Sakthi again coalesces with Sadasivam, as a result of which arise Brahma, Vishnu and Rudra, to perform the three functions respectively of evolution, sustentation and dissolution, — birth, growth and death. It is these three forces (Brahma, Vishnu and Rudra) who give shape and substance to the world and who provide bodily organisms for the souls to dwell in, besides providing the latter with objects with which to experience pain and pleasure.
(When Sakthi functions thus as the instrumental cause of the evolution of Maya, it is called the Tirodhana Sakthi or Concealment -Power; for though in associating the soul with a material body, sense organs and intellectual faculties, all evolutes of Maya, it causes a finite experience in which the utter unconsciousness of the soul in Anava is dissipated, yet in that finite experience the Truth, the knowledge of Reality, is still concealed from the soul until such time as by God’s grace it is revealed. It is Sakthi, not Karma, which provides souls with the conditions of finite experience; but Karma, the principle of action and reaction, determines the form and quality of the experience.)
Sthithi ensures that the souls do undergo pain and pleasure accruing out of their Karma.
Samhara is the state when Siva draws all souls within Himself wherein they lie unconscious so that they might have a recess from the process of birth and death. Samhara is fourfold, Nitya Samhara, Vaitha Samhara, Suddha Samhara, Uitha Samhara. In Nitya Samhara, the souls are disembodied and lie inert and in union with the Absolute Being which creates everything; they get into a state of forgetfulness as in sleep. In Vaitha Samhara, Maya fades out. and the soul exists in Jagrathitha state. Suddha Samhara is the state when the soul has no need of mental direction and does not perform any Karma. In Uitha Samhara, the soul loses its identity and becomes one with Sivam.
Drobhava refers to the state when the soul is in implicit union with Sivam, but is not aware of it. (The same clay is used for making pots as well as several other kinds of receptacles. Likewise, God is the entity that pervades all souls, and still we do not seek to know Him! The mind grasps the taste, but ignores the dish! We remain ignorant of the Knower who makes us know!)
ANUGRAHA (BESTOWAL OF GRACE):
God puts the soul into the body, just as we put an object into a bag. He then opens the bag and lets out the soul. This process of putting in and letting out goes on and on, until the soul is rid of its Karma. The potter makes several objects, such as pot, tumbler etc. Likewise, God creates this, that and several other things. He causes the world to come into being, prompted by His benevolent disposition towards the souls. The world is the instrument with which the soul experiences pain and pleasure and is finally liberated from the bondage that ties it to life.
We adore the child, but forget that it has been shaped in the womb by God. He gives the child its quality and substance even before it issues forth from the womb, gives it all assistance such as providing the soul with its twenty-five tattvas and all other accessories in anticipation of its future Karma. When man unites with woman and performs the sexual act, the fruit of their love enables the soul to enter into the woman’s womb. At this moment of entry the future tenor of the child’s life is determined.
The child’s organism is product of the Suklam, and Sonitham. Air acquires the perfume of the flower it embraces; likewise, the breath or vayu that enters into the child‘s body gets acclimatised to rhythmic cardiac contraction. If the male Suklam is predominant, the child is Rudra or male; if the female Sonitham is dominant, the offspring is Vishnu of female. If Suklam and Sonitham are equal, the resultant product becomes ali or impotent. If, after the discharge, man inhales in relief five times, the child’s age is hundred, eighty if he inhales four times and so on. Only yogis possess the ability to control and regulate the discharge and themselves determine the nature of the offspring. If the flow of male discharge is slow, the offspring is short in stature; if sluggish, lame; if fitful and interrupted, hunchback. If the female bowels happen to remain uncleared at the time of male discharge, the offspring will grow into a fool: if the female bladder is full, the offspring is deaf. If both the bowels and the bladder happen to be full, the offspring is born blind.
If breathing is by Ida (left nostril) at the time of male discharge, the offspring is male, female if Pingala (right nostril), and twins if apanam comes up. If breathing is through both Ida and Pingala, the offspring is impotent. If male discharge coincides with uniform male and female breathing, the offspring will look beautiful; ugly, if their breaths clash.
The child is nursed and nurtured within the womb with extraordinary care for three hundred days; but, neither the male who plants the seed, nor the female on whose bed it is planted, knows anything about it! The Absolute Being stands as the sentinel guarding the child in the womb! How incredible, and yet how true!
The union of Sakthi and Siva creates the world; provides the souls with suitable bodies: makes them wipe out their Karma by experiencing pain and pleasure; unites them with the Pathi when their Pasa is removed.
There are three categories of souls: Vignanakalas, Pralayakalas, and Sakalas.
Vignanakalas are twofold-souls which, bound by Anava Mala, remain inherently as such in an unconscious state; and souls, though possessing the same Anava Mala alone, have got rid of the other Malas by effort. There is a further threefold division of the latter — Vignanakevalas that are still indulging in Karma attributable to Anava Mala; Vignana- sakalas that live apart in a separate sphere intended for them; Vignanasuthas that have got rid of’ their Malas by God’s grace.
Pralayakalas are souls that are bound by two Malas, Anava and Maya. They may be classified into Pralavakevalas, Pralayasakalas and Pralayasuthas, corresponding to the three stages explained above.
SAKALAS : Souls that are still bound by all the three Malas (Anava, Maya and Karma) are called Sakalas.
SACRED BATHING :
It is futile to wander about in search of sacred bathing places when there are several such places within our own selves. What folly is it to miss the holy Ganges which will flow within ourselves if we seek Him diligently! Of what avail is it to search in the pond for an object dropped into the ocean .
There are two types of persons who abuse God, those who think lightly of Him without having a correct knowledge of His omniscience and benevolence, and those who, blinded by unbridled arrogance and conceit, think that there is no God other than themselves. While those belonging to the former category are merely screaming like a rat in the clutches of the cat, it is the latter who inflict much misery on themselves and on others as well.
Scrupulous care should be taken to see to it that the Guru is treated with respect. No State that displeases the Guru and disregards his guidance can last long.
Patience serves as a haven to the tortured mind. It lessens the soul’s distress.
The company of devotees invigorates the mind and is a priceless asset.
(Tirumular: “I went to Sivalogam accompanied by other devotees. When I was announced by the guards, Lord Siva came out and received me with open arms. I spent some time in the company of yogis who had solved the mysteries of life and death. Eventually, I crossed the ocean of birth, and stood on the other shore.”)