ADVENTURES IN ADVAITA VEDANTA...


Adventures in Advaita Vedanta, the philosophy and science of spirit. We are one you and I; are you curious why?..

THE ADVENTURE

HARI OM!
Here is a place to linger, to let your intellect roam. Aatmaavrajanam is being written as a progressive study and, as such, can be read like a book. Anyone arriving at any time can simply start at the very first post and work their way through at their own pace. Please take time to read the info tabs and ensure you don't miss a post, by subscribing to the blog. Interaction is welcomed. Don't be a spectator - be a participator!

Better Known

Hari Om

This is 'Story-day', the one where we look at the more cultural aspects of the spiritual pursuit.

This is a busy few weeks in the Indian calendar.  To be honest, there are almost endless festivals - or it can seem so if you were to subscribe to all!  What is found, though, is that certain communities will favour one over another, or choose perhaps three that they will observe closely and sit back a bit for others. This is found elsewhere; in Christian tradition, one saint would be favoured over another depending on our need... which gives the clue to the multifarious names and faces found in Hinduism. Whilst the epithet 'god' is applied to most of those faces, it should be understood that each is a representation of particular values or talents and are worshipped in order to gain blessing in those areas. Conversely, 'god' is used because, indeed 'God' is everywhere, in everything! Many are leery of, even mightily afraid, of the idea of 'idols'. Murti/statues are used for focus.  It is the nature of the human to want to see a representation of their feeling.  It is this which breeds art.  Without doubt one of the things that breaks barriers of fear and prejudice is to hear the background and learn a bit more of the mystery.  Through the telling of their stories, these faces become better known.

Last week you learned about Rakshaa Bhandan.  This weekend it is k¯:[ jNmaĆ²mI / Krishna Janmaashtamii.



There are a few faces, though, which are worshipped by all.  One such is Sri Krishna. Outside of India the representation of this Lord is most widely known through ISKCON - the 'Hare Krishnas' - a movement which most closely resembles Christian organisation and missionary zeal.

Sri Krishna is one of the historical manifestions of High Spirit, in the same way that Lord Jesus was.  Indeed, there is much research being done on the 'missing years' of Christ (between 'bet sefer' and his rise to teacher status); with mounting evidence that those years were spent in India.  Within Indian tradition, Yeshu is well-recognised and if what is presented is at all close to fact, it surely goes a long way to explaining why so much of what He teaches ties in very closely with Vedantic understanding.

Baby Krishna was born in the in the month of Shraavan (August) to a Mother Devaki.  She and her husband were imprisoned by her brother (Kamsa) who had been told that the eighth child they bore would cause the loss of his kingdom. He had killed their previous children, taking no chance, and would have killed little Krishna, had not a vision of Lord Vishnu appeared to the couple and ordered them to get the child to a nearby cow-herding village.  How was this accomplished?  At the time of birth an energy stunned the guards and kept them thus till his father, Vasudeva, transported the baby to the care of Yashoda-ma and her husband Nanda in the village of Gokul.  In turn, the girl-child born to Yashoda was brought back... to certain death you are thinking?

Have a fun few minutes finding out...



Tomorrow night, then, is the actual date of Janmaashtami. Hindu households everywhere will have decorated and brought in much food and lots of sweets.  Children will be excited at rocking the cradle of the Lord on the stroke of midnight.  It is the celebration which most closely resembles that of Christmas.



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