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Thread: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~

    namasté & hello

    I'd like to add one more idea to the overall conversation. I do this because I see viraja as open to ideas and with an absence of malice. With that let me proceed.
    When one has an spiritual experience, it is no doubt a wonderful thing. It uplifts us. This is all well and good. Yet note too it is an experience given to us on a personal level. So much so, that perhaps even the devāḥ would like to keep it personal and out of the lime light. Now how could I even suggest this? I look to the aitareya upaniṣad for my support. Let me explain.

    The aitareya upaniṣad (aitareyopaniṣat) is from the aitareya āraṇyaka, which is a continuation of the aitareya brāhamaṇa, all appended ( some would say finding their home ) in the ṛgveda (rig veda) – hence it is vedānta or the end/culmination/summing-up of the vedaḥ. The ṛṣi of the aitareya upaniṣad is reviewed in the footnotes below for one’s consideration. Now, why mention all this? To let the reader know we’re in good company with the knowledge that is being supplied.

    This upaniṣad in a nut-shell addresses the question of who¹, what, & why of all this (idam¹) world and ourselves. It is one of my favorites due to the density of knowledge contained herein and its brevity.

    So, I’d like to point-out one offer found in aitareya upaniṣad (aitareyopaniṣat), section ( or khaṇḍaḥ) 1.3.14, as it says the following:
    tasmādidandro nāmedandro ha vai nāma |
    tamidandraṁ santam indra ityācakṣate parokṣeṇa |
    parokṣapriyā iva hi devāḥ parokṣapriyo iva hi devāḥ || 14

    This śloka’s full meaning cannot be gleaned without going deeper in to the previous 13 verses and that will take us off the present track. So, let me pull out the offer aligned to the theme/idea for this post.

    It says, the devāḥ’s (devatāḥ) indeed (iva hi) favor (priyā) what is indirect, they are more agreeable of what is indirect.

    The term for ‘indirect’ here is parokṣa which means out of sight, or beyond the range of sight. The term priyā means favor and kindness. Many have seen this term as preyas and it is defined as more agreeable, dearer. Hence, this is coaching and informing us that the devatāḥ find it more agreeable and favor what is more indirect. In fact the last line repeats the notion twice (parokṣapriyā iva parokṣapriyo iva)

    What is the jest of this knowledge ?
    If you have ever visited a temple , this
    parokṣa is done in a very simple manner. We stand to the left or right of the mūrtayaḥ (mūrti’s , the deities we see); we do not ‘face off’ or stand directly in front of them, that would not be indirect. Even when one visits the inner part of the temple called the garbhagṝha (garbha-gṛha) people look-in from the sides, standing on the left or right. This is physically the way (by our actions) of aligning to what the devatāḥ find more agreeable.

    It is informing us ( as I see it) that devatāḥ like to be approached in this manner. They prefer & favor ‘parokṣa’ a more subtle approach out of the lime-light. This then suggests they do not like to be the center of attention. They like it behind the scenes, they like and favor this. So, when we are at times visited ( or open to) a spiritual experience that include a
    devaḥ, it seems to me they would like to keep it personal, between you and them. If our heart swells with happiness , so be it . It is the gift. It is a personal gift given to you and one is discrete about it.





    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ


    • 1.3.14 in saṃskṛta for those that like to follow along.

    तस्मादिदन्द्रो नामेदन्द्रो ह वै नाम ।
    तमिदन्द्रं सन्तम् इन्द्र इत्याचक्षते परोक्षेण ।
    परोक्षप्रिया इव हि देवाः परोक्षप्रियो इव हि देवाः ॥१४
    • idam = ‘this’ , ‘this here’ , referring to something near the speaker.
    • who ? अथ कोऽहमिति - atha ko’ham iti = then who am I ? 1.3.11 ; from the very last line of the śloka.


    • The ṛṣi of the aitareya upaniṣad is aitareya mahīdāsa. He is called out in the chandogyopaniṣat, saying he lived to 116 years of age. It is said he was the incarnation of viṣṇu.
      • We are told he was born of the woman known as itarā. This word itarā means ' the other' - this suggests this woman as 'the other' and not the legitimate wife of the father. She therefore did not have the the rights and privileges of a ~legitimate wife~.
        So, as the story goes , one day his father is having a big yajña performed. It is custom for the yajamāna ( the one who performs and pays for the yajña, and in this case aitareya's father) to be present and seated at this event. He was denied a seat at the yajña. This was taken as a direct insult to itarā, aitareya's biological mother. Itarā-ma prays to bhūmi devī ,also known as mahī and asks for her atonement. Via her grace she appears and places aitareya-ji on a throne. She then proceeds to teach him the wisdom and knowledge of the Supreme. Aitareya means the descendant of itarā his mother, and mahīdāsa is the servent (dāsa) of mahī or bhūmi devī.
    Last edited by yajvan; 12 December 2016 at 11:43 AM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  2. #12
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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Namaste Yajvan ji,

    I feel so increasingly guilty and uncomfortable about declaring these 2 instances 'everywhere'!!! Goingforth, I will give respect to the deity if I should have anymore spiritual experiences and not declare it to anyone.

    Thank you for this wonderful offering.

    OM NAMAH SHIVAYA!
    OM NAMO NARAYANAYA!
    JAI MA LAKSHMI!
    JAI DURGE!

    Thank you,

    Viraja
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~

    namasté & hello

    Quote Originally Posted by Viraja View Post
    Namaste Yajvan ji,
    I feel so increasingly guilty and uncomfortable about declaring these 2 instances 'everywhere'!!! Goingforth, I will give respect to the deity if I should have anymore spiritual experiences and not declare it to anyone.
    Thank you for this wonderful offering.
    This was not my intent - to instill any guilt ( really me thinks it is remorse, as the two are often confused). What was my intent then? To offer another point of view for all of our HDF readers. The knowledge of our upaniṣad-s are quite profound. It is offered so it can be applied.

    Let me inform you that I have been corrected many (many) times... some times it has been crushing for me . But what gets crushed? It is part of the ego that wants to be puffed up. For this, only good comes from the knowledge. It is a blessing when this gets pointed out. To deflate the ego (many times) as it thinks it is the driver. Any guilt is not really-really you, but a pointer to whom you are not. Any smallness is not you (SELF).

    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~

    namasté & hello

    I'd like to add one more idea to the overall conversation. I do this because I see viraja as open to ideas and with an absence of malice. With that let me proceed.
    When one has an spiritual experience, it is no doubt a wonderful thing. It uplifts us. This is all well and good. Yet note too it is an experience given to us on a personal level. So much so, that perhaps even the devāḥ would like to keep it personal and out of the lime light. Now how could I even suggest this? I look to the aitareya upaniṣad for my support. Let me explain.

    The aitareya upaniṣad (aitareyopaniṣat) is from the aitareya āraṇyaka, which is a continuation of the aitareya brāhamaṇa, all appended ( some would say finding their home ) in the ṛgveda (rig veda) – hence it is vedānta or the end/culmination/summing-up of the vedaḥ. The ṛṣi of the aitareya upaniṣad is reviewed in the footnotes below for one’s consideration. Now, why mention all this? To let the reader know we’re in good company with the knowledge that is being supplied.

    This upaniṣad in a nut-shell addresses the question of who¹, what, & why of all this (idam¹) world and ourselves. It is one of my favorites due to the density of knowledge contained herein and its brevity.

    So, I’d like to point-out one offer found in aitareya upaniṣad (aitareyopaniṣat), section ( or khaṇḍaḥ) 1.3.14, as it says the following:
    tasmādidandro nāmedandro ha vai nāma |
    tamidandraṁ santam indra ityācakṣate parokṣeṇa |
    parokṣapriyā iva hi devāḥ parokṣapriyo iva hi devāḥ || 14

    This śloka’s full meaning cannot be gleaned without going deeper in to the previous 13 verses and that will take us off the present track. So, let me pull out the offer aligned to the theme/idea for this post.

    It says, the devāḥ’s (devatāḥ) indeed (iva hi) favor (priyā) what is indirect, they are more agreeable of what is indirect.

    The term for ‘indirect’ here is parokṣa which means out of sight, or beyond the range of sight. The term priyā means favor and kindness. Many have seen this term as preyas and it is defined as more agreeable, dearer. Hence, this is coaching and informing us that the devatāḥ find it more agreeable and favor what is more indirect. In fact the last line repeats the notion twice (parokṣapriyā iva parokṣapriyo iva)

    What is the jest of this knowledge ?
    If you have ever visited a temple , this
    parokṣa is done in a very simple manner. We stand to the left or right of the mūrtayaḥ (mūrti’s , the deities we see); we do not ‘face off’ or stand directly in front of them, that would not be indirect. Even when one visits the inner part of the temple called the garbhagṝha (garbha-gṛha) people look-in from the sides, standing on the left or right. This is physically the way (by our actions) of aligning to what the devatāḥ find more agreeable.

    It is informing us ( as I see it) that devatāḥ like to be approached in this manner. They prefer & favor ‘parokṣa’ a more subtle approach out of the lime-light. This then suggests they do not like to be the center of attention. They like it behind the scenes, they like and favor this. So, when we are at times visited ( or open to) a spiritual experience that include a
    devaḥ, it seems to me they would like to keep it personal, between you and them. If our heart swells with happiness , so be it . It is the gift. It is a personal gift given to you and one is discrete about it.





    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ


    • 1.3.14 in saṃskṛta for those that like to follow along.

    तस्मादिदन्द्रो नामेदन्द्रो ह वै नाम ।
    तमिदन्द्रं सन्तम् इन्द्र इत्याचक्षते परोक्षेण ।
    परोक्षप्रिया इव हि देवाः परोक्षप्रियो इव हि देवाः ॥१४
    • idam = ‘this’ , ‘this here’ , referring to something near the speaker.
    • who ? अथ कोऽहमिति - atha ko’ham iti = then who am I ? 1.3.11 ; from the very last line of the śloka.


    • The ṛṣi of the aitareya upaniṣad is aitareya mahīdāsa. He is called out in the chandogyopaniṣat, saying he lived to 116 years of age. It is said he was the incarnation of viṣṇu.
      • We are told he was born of the woman known as itarā. This word itarā means ' the other' - this suggests this woman as 'the other' and not the legitimate wife of the father. She therefore did not have the the rights and privileges of a ~legitimate wife~.
        So, as the story goes , one day his father is having a big yajña performed. It is custom for the yajamāna ( the one who performs and pays for the yajña, and in this case aitareya's father) to be present and seated at this event. He was denied a seat at the yajña. This was taken as a direct insult to itarā, aitareya's biological mother. Itarā-ma prays to bhūmi devī ,also known as mahī and asks for her atonement. Via her grace she appears and places aitareya-ji on a throne. She then proceeds to teach him the wisdom and knowledge of the Supreme. Aitareya means the descendant of itarā his mother, and mahīdāsa is the servent (dāsa) of mahī or bhūmi devī.
    Namaste Yajvan ji,
    This knowledge, sloka is new for me.. Thanks for always sharing such a deep knowledge..
    I have some doubts about the post you made due to my limited mind.... but I will not spoil Viraj ji thread asking my doubts..

    Pranam
    Aasato ma sat gamay
    tamaso ma jotirgamay
    mrityorma amrutamgamay
    (Bring me from asat to sat, bring me from darkness (ignorance) to light (knowledge), bring me from death to immortality)
    Om Namah Shivay
    Om Vishnave Namah

  5. #15
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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Thank you, Yajvan ji.

    No, I am not implying your reply to my post is the reason for my guilt. The continued silence from my friend in FB who stopped posting her lovable posts on Lakshmi following my narration of my spiritual experience and also a comment received via a fellow poster here in HDF gently rebuking me for my said declaration, all have contributed to such a feeling.

    Even Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa in his Upadesa manjari, says that one should never ever disclose their spiritual experiences or not even their religious and spiritual inclinations with anyone! He says the reasons being that spirituality being a very rare acquisition by a soul for its betterment, stands only a chance against numerous onslaughts against it in day-to-day life, from various people and various points-of-views. Some people are jealous if we declare our spiritual intents (or experiences), some are hate-filled, some are disgusted, there won't be many who will see you for the positive value you bring. Therefore the spiritual intention might get robbed while it is still in its early development.

    Thank you for the wonderful offerings and guidance you provide.

    @Soul of Light - please go ahead with your clarifications to Yajvan ji.

    Thanks,

    Viraja
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    one should never ever disclose their spiritual experiences or not even their religious and spiritual inclinations with anyone!
    Namaste Viraja,

    Slightly off the topic but related to the theme.

    Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa is a spiritually evolved person. His views should be revered. But in our Purana(s) and other scriptures we read stories involving people sharing their dreams with their peers, religious heads to understand it. The Story of கிளி சோழன் (Kili Chozhan) is an example. If you dig bit more, you will know that Sri Raamaanujacharya shared the Mahaa Mantra with the general public as soon as he got to know it. I am not sure but why a good incident SHOULD NOT be shared with the right minded people (how can we judge the right mindedness)

    I am not questioning anyone's views or credibility but would like to know why, in most cases, we follow customs without understanding it. Ignorance is a very big offense than curiosity. My humble opinion.

    Another important point to note: An ideal devotee will never take offense, and if that happen, the devotee is still struggling to become one. I also understand Bhaagavatha Apacharam is great offense but we should know what is offense and what is not.
    Last edited by Anirudh; 13 December 2016 at 09:07 PM.
    Anirudh...

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Anirudh,

    What a nice detail you have added! Well, in Ramanujachaarya's case, he was completely on control that his spirituality will not get robbed under any circumstance. If you are sure of yourself, you are permitted certain things more than the average could do...

    Also the intent makes a difference. If I declare my spiritual experience, I cannot deny an element of 'pride' in it. I'm afraid it might disgust the said deity and that it is actually a sign that a person is only in early stages of devotion.

    Nevertheless, I cannot also deny the element of 'joy' in declaring it in HDF - which happens to be a wonderful satsang in the cyberspace. If something as good happens to you, you invariably want to share your joy with someone, and most people in daily life (including my good friend and my hubby) DO NOT BELIEVE IN SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCES. So you want to share with someone, and who is this someone? Certainly a bunch of other devotees, correct?

    Thank you for the input.

    Warm regards,

    Viraja
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Vannakkam: I have come to the opinion from life experiences that there are some folk that are all about being offended. One can say the most harmless thing, and this personality type gets offended. So sometimes its not at all what you said, but just the make-up of that person. Often they have a weak button.

    For example: I was organizing a group penance, and we had agreed that it would be 21 pradakshinas. I was informing all newcomers and joiners of the fact, just so they'd know. One person figured it was my way of telling them they were fat, took it personally, and ripped me for the insult.

    Even staying completely quiet can cause that kind of person to react with, 'Why do you never say anything to me?"

    Having said this, I've also been taught to never share mystical experiences with anyone but the Guru, for a few reasons. It think it's a wise teaching.

    Aum Namasivaya

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eastern Mind View Post
    Having said this, I've also been taught to never share mystical experiences with anyone but the Guru, for a few reasons. It think it's a wise teaching.

    Aum Namasivaya

    EM ji, now you have made me very curious!! I want to know if you have had mystical experiences and what it was.... Wow! Don't know about others but I am very eager to know others' experiences!!

    Thank you so much for the reply.
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

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    Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Vannakkam Viraja: Personally, I believe everyone has mystical experiences. It's part of being in a physical body on this planet. What varies is the ability to recognise it as such, and that's from factors such as the thickness of anava (avidya) that is covering awareness, or the intellectual rational mind being unable to admit it, and in constant denial.

    The other factor is the degree of importance one puts on it. Some people or faiths put great emphasis on it, while others treat it like going for coffee with a friend, no big deal.

    Aum Namasivaya

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