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Jainarayan
28 September 2011, 12:04 PM
Namaste all.

For some reason I remember that Sri Krishna said that because man uses his senses to perceive the world, he needs to use murtis to "see" God.

I also seem to think that He told Arjuna that man cannot bear to be in the constant presence of God, so we forget that God is among us. Specifically that Arjuna didn't recognize Krishna as God.

Is this written anywhere? I've looked through the Gita, but maybe because of translations, I didn't see it.

Did Krishna ever say those things or do I imagine it?

Kumar_Das
28 September 2011, 01:07 PM
Namaste all.

For some reason I remember that Sri Krishna said that because man uses his senses to perceive the world, he needs to use murtis to "see" God.


God in an unmanifested state cannot be percieved via any of the physical senses in Hinduism. I doubt anywhere God says such a thing. God will only explain why people use icons of worship. Why? Because He is God. And He knows not everybody has the ability to worship Him directly, without any aid. People need something to send them into a state of worship.(sound-prayer, image-murti, some physical movement of some sort-yoga)

Jainarayan
28 September 2011, 01:16 PM
God will only explain why people use icons of worship. Why? Because He is God. And He knows not everybody has the ability to worship Him directly, without any aid. People need something to send them into a state of worship.(sound-prayer, image-murti, some physical movement of some sort-yoga)

Yes, that's what I meant. I may have not worded it right. I seem to remember seeing that somewhere but I can't find it anymore. It's one of those things "stuck" in my head.

Kumar_Das
28 September 2011, 01:28 PM
http://www.bhagavad-gita.org/Gita/verse-12-04.html

Kumar_Das
28 September 2011, 01:42 PM
The understanding that jivas cannot withstand the presence of God is something present in Hinduism too. Its supposed to be the most extreme overwhelming feeling. To be able to face God, you would have to live a holy life, and constantly meditate. And its gradual process. God is Great, with infinite attributes of infinite extent. The finite being when it becomes aware of the presence of God is an extreme feeling.

God is Ever-Present, yet reaching Him is the hardest. It requires a transformation of the individual. That's what the verse is alluding to.

Jainarayan
28 September 2011, 01:51 PM
That's it! :) That has to be it, considering Srila Prabhupada's commentary:

Therefore, the bhakti-yogi accepts the Deity of Krishna as worshipable because there is some bodily conception fixed in the mind, which can thus be applied. Of course, worship of the Supreme Personality of Godhead in His form within the temple is not idol worship. There is evidence in the Vedic literature that worship may be saguna and nirguna—of the Supreme possessing or not possessing attributes. Worship of the Deity in the temple is saguna worship, for the Lord is represented by material qualities. But the form of the Lord, though represented by material qualities such as stone, wood or oil paint, is not actually material. That is the absolute nature of the Supreme Lord.

...

So for a devotee there is no difficulty in approaching the Supreme immediately and directly, but for those who are following the impersonal way to spiritual realization the path is difficult. They have to understand the unmanifested representation of the Supreme through such Vedic literatures as the Upanishads, and they have to learn the language, understand the nonperceptual feelings, and realize all these processes. This is not very easy for a common man.

The translation or interpretation I remember was either way off, or over-simplified.

Thanks much. ;)

Sahasranama
28 September 2011, 01:55 PM
It's very hard to verify what was said or not, you'd have to go through the entire itihasapurana which is a daunting task. Once a friend asked me to look up a verse he had read somewhere about "something" with rice. LOL If possible, you should remember where you read it and then think about whether the source is authentic or not, otherwise forget about it. It's better not to read too many books that don't have clear references to the shastras, otherwise you might as well pick up a Dan Brown novel.

There is also a misconception that it is the dvaita view that the image is a direct avatara of Ishvara. But this is in contradiction with one of the basic dvaita premises: the Jada-Ishvara bheda. (disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any of the darshanic schools).

Kumar_Das
28 September 2011, 02:00 PM
There is also a misconception that it is the dvaita view that the image is a direct avatara of Ishvara. But this is in contradiction with one of the basic dvaita premises: the Jada-Ishvara bheda. (disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any of the darshanic schools).

Some Dvaitins consider following what someone says or relying on something/someone tantamount to worship lol.

Jainarayan
28 September 2011, 02:20 PM
If possible, you should remember where you read it and then think about whether the source is authentic or not, otherwise forget about it. It's better not to read too many books that don't have clear references to the shastras, otherwise you might as well pick up a Dan Brown novel.

Points taken. Now I'm pretty sure it was some over-simplification, misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the verse, probably done ignorantly. Too many people write too many off-the-wall things, without backing it up.

The reason I wanted to find the source/verse, is because it had to do with a discussion about idol worship. I wanted to back up my assertion that's not what we do.

Jainarayan
29 September 2011, 10:36 AM
Update:

I found the exact phrasing of the verse I remember. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murti#Role_in_worship

It is much difficult to focus on God as the unmanifested than God with form, due to human beings having the need to perceive via the senses. - Bhagavad Gita 12.5

I don't know why this is so different from other translations. Perhaps someone can translate the original:


kleso ’dhikataras tesam avyaktasakta-cetasam avyakta hi gatir duhkham dehavadbhir avapyate

Btw, note the passage that was discussed in another thread:

For of Vishnu is eternal, He is 2 or four-handed, but it is rather so that humans are similar to Vishnu, but not that God, Vishnu is created by human and humans ascribe to Him human features: "Those who adhere to the Māyāvāda philosophy of anthropomorphism say, "The Absolute Truth is impersonal, but because we are persons we imagine that the Absolute Truth is also a person." This is a mistake, and in fact just the opposite is true. We have two hands, two legs, and a head because God Himself has these same features. We have personal forms because we are reflections of God." [3] (http://vedabase.net/tqk/12/en) ( ^ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murti#cite_ref-2) Kumar Singh, Nagendra. Encyclopaedia of Hinduism, Volume 7. 1997, page 739-43)