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Why Understand the Creation of the Universe

Why Understand the

Creation of the Universe

By Stephen Knapp

Why should we understand how the universe was created? Because it gives us a clearer understanding of where we have come from, where we are going, who and what we are, and what our purpose is here. There have been many scientific theories over the years about the origin of life and how the universe may have been created. However, science makes little comment on the purpose of the universe or the reason for life. But why would something come to be without a purpose? Once you consider that there is a purpose to life, the search for life’s origins may very well lead you into a different direction than simply trying to find an explanation for a mechanical or chemical process of creation. In this book we are going to deal with these points, and more.

We are going to take a look at a different approach to the origin of the universe, the Vedic approach. The difference between most scientists and the Vedic approach is that the Vedic system accepts a descending channel of knowledge coming from previous authorities. Scientists accept no prior authority, except for other scientists, and try to discover the mysteries of the universe through their own perceptions by various instruments, experiments, and the use of mathematical formulas to try to verify their theories. This is called the ascending process. However, if one should diligently take this process to its ultimate conclusion, one will reach the same line of thought as the descending method.

For example, in the 1930s, Sir James Jeans concluded in his book, The Mysterious Universe (1930), that the universe consists of pure thought, which means the creation must have been an act of thought. However, he felt that the “thinker” had to have been a mathematical thinker working outside the boundaries of time and space, which is part of His creation. Thus, the “thinker” had to have been “beyond what He created.” Sir Arthur Eddington also concluded in his book, The Nature of the Physical World (1935), that, “The stuff of the world is mind stuff.” In part, both of these theories are corroborated in the Vedic texts because it is described that the Supreme Creator produces the material world by His dreaming in yoga-nidra, His mystic slumber. Thus, the material creation is the Supreme Being’s dream, or a display of His thought energy. Furthermore, the Vedic literature describes how the Supreme Being exists outside the boundaries of the material manifestation from where He begins the process of creation. So, He is indeed “beyond what He created.”

It was also in the 1930s when scientists played with the idea that all life and consciousness began from a “primordial soup.” This would be a soup of all the necessary chemicals needed to produce a living cell that would somehow combine in just the right way to spark a living organism.

Another idea was the theory of the BIG BANG, that all creation started from a single point or particle. This particle had unlimited depth and weight that somehow exploded to produce the universe. This, however, is mathematically indescribable. It is called a singularity, which means it is impossible. Nonetheless, this theory, as with the theory of evolution, is often taken to be a fact, upon which many other theories become based. However, they do not explain from where or how the original particle appeared.

The theories of the primordial soup and BIG BANG depend on the idea that inert matter can randomly organize itself into complex structures and various species of life. That is the fundamental trouble with both of these theories: How can inert matter by itself develop the incredible molecular arrangements to produce even the simplest cell? Matter does not organize itself that way. In fact, it can be seen that matter, once put into some form of construction and then left alone, always deteriorates. As scientists develop newer instruments to take a closer look at cells, they understand how truly miraculous such a random occurrence could be. Thus, it becomes obvious that nature needs to be directed by some higher force or intelligence for such combinations of material ingredients to come together to produce life. This immediately nullifies Darwin’s theory of evolution. Even Darwin admitted that there were problems with his theory.

However, the modern theory and the Vedic description of evolution are similar, but there is one big difference. The modern theory teaches that one simple species produces another species through variations of genetic reproduction until we have a variety of progressively more complex life forms. The Vedic system, on the other hand, teaches that evolution starts in the opposite way. From a complex species, such as God, and then the devas or demigods who are the co-creators, and through the process of reproduction and genetic variations, there is a production of continually less complex species. This could be called the process of inverse evolution. However, the modern theory cannot explain why there are galaxies, or how the simplest of cells were formed. So there are many gaps in the modern theories of creation and evolution that are still waiting for further evidence to be solved. So why should science not look at the Vedic view as well?

My suggestion is that the assumption of a BIG BANG is the scientists interpretation of evidence that indicates an exceedingly sudden arise of material elements as they were manifested from the Supreme Being. The Supreme Creator is, of course, spiritual and would be undetectable and beyond observation in the material sense by our limited senses and ordinary instruments. Thus, there would be nothing that we could see to indicate His presence in the universe before the creation. So it may certainly look as if this universe did come from nothing. Nonetheless, the process of the sudden development of the stars, planets, and galaxies could have been similar to the ideas that the scientists have put forth.

The problem is that even if something like the BIG BANG did occur without the supervision of a higher authority, what you would really end up having is a universe filled with dust. Why would such solid planets, suns, stars, and galaxies form out of this floating dust? And there certainly has been no scientific explanation why there is consciousness that inhabits the millions of species of beings. How could a BIG BANG bring about consciousness? From where did it come? These things are not explained by science. So it is not unreasonable to consider other theories about how this universe came into being, and how there was a development of so many species of life that have consciousness.

Another problem is that trying to apply simple physical laws on complex phenomenon like the creation requires the use of assumptions and guesswork which make such scientific theories no better than superstitions, even if such ideas are supported by other scientists or mathematicians. Their conclusions are misleading. This is why scientists are always changing or updating their conclusions as they make new discoveries. If they did not have it right the first time, why should we think they may have it right later on? And they will never get it right if they have only one theory and simply try to make all of their evidence fit that theory. They need to look at other possibilities.

Furthermore, the whole idea of a random reorganization of matter directly opposes the second law of thermodynamics. This law states that as time goes on, there is an increase in entropy, which is an increase in the state of random disorder or deterioration. This means that without a higher intelligence to intercede in the steady disorganization of elements, the universe is in a constant state of gradual decline. This is directly opposite to the idea that matter could organize itself into increasingly complex systems of stars, planets, and galaxies, or even cells, bodies, and various species. So such an organization of matter after a BIG BANG could never have taken place, nor could a BIG BANG have occurred. How could there have been a single particle of unlimited depth and weight floating around in the void universe waiting to explode? Someone had to have put it there. And how could it have exploded into unlimited atoms that formed the universe? Such theories are simply more scientific myths. So how else could the universe have been formed and from where does consciousness come?

First of all, consciousness does not come from a combination of chemicals. Consciousness is a non-material energy. Thus, consciousness exists before, during, and after the material creation. This means that the origin of the material cosmos and all life within it must also be consciousness, a Supreme Consciousness from whom come all other forms of consciousness that take up residence in the varieties of material bodies or species found in this material creation. This origin must also have intelligence and the ability to design in order to make the various combinations of elements come together to form even the simplest of cells. A single cell is formed by a combination of 300 amino acids that come together in a certain chain or pattern. Even scientists cannot figure out how that happened. And nature cannot do it by itself, as explained above. So there had to have been a guiding Creator to put this all together.

So if there is such a Supreme Creator with consciousness and intelligence, it is also quite possible that He would allow a way for us to communicate with Him. It is also quite possible that He provides us with the knowledge we need for us to know how to do this and to understand what we are and the purpose of life. For example, according to Vedic science, as the Supreme Creator creates the cosmos, the creative potency descends among other beings who are created, called demigods in the Vedic system, to assist the Supreme in manifesting the material worlds. So, the Supreme expands Himself and also creates positions within the material cosmos which are taken by co-creators or demigods who assist in creating and maintaining the material manifestation. They also help distribute the spiritual knowledge among all others. This is the descending process of acquiring knowledge by which we understand the mysteries of life. It is the information provided by the Supreme Creator that descends through the ancient sages and scriptures, and His pure representatives. In this way, we can learn about the universe and its purpose rather than trying to understand it only by analyzing minute cells and parts of the cosmos, the way of modern science.

We need to be aware that scientists may continue to try to find the cause and origin of the universe for thousands of years, but they will not find it. They will never find the source by examining the elements within the universe. They may get clues through such a process and realize that all molecules and elements are like signs that point to a Creator, but you have to reach the Creator to understand how everything happened. Therefore, the reason why they will never find the cause of the universe by only using this method is that the original cause of the creation exists OUTSIDE the universe. It is like analyzing the elements within a house to find its cause when the designer lives somewhere else outside the house. Thus, until the scientists can reach the Creator through spiritual understanding, examining the universe to find its cause or source is like a maze that has no end.

Our premise, on the other hand, is that all life comes from God. Almost every religion accepts this. Unfortunately, the problem is that most religions and traditions provide only a short and unscientific story or allegory of the universal creation. However, the Vedic literature, such as the Srimad-Bhagavatam, explains that the universal creation is but an expansion or a development from the original spiritual elements. These exist prior to, during, and after the material creation. By understanding the Supreme Creator and the spiritual nature, the cause of the material manifestation can be understood. Not the other way around.

The universe started in a state of perfect simplicity. The design of this universe comes from that dimension of ultimate cause and simplicity, which is that of the spiritual. This is beyond the material strata and where the cause of the universe and the seed of its manifestation exists. The Vedic literature points the way to this region and presents the blueprints of the universe and all life within.

The energies of matter and spirit are energies that vibrate at different frequencies and manifest on diverse levels. However, they both originate from the same source, which is consciousness, the pure consciousness of the Supreme Being. Yet, the spiritual strata is eternal while the material is temporary. Thus, the material plane is subservient to, and pervaded by, the unlimited spiritual energy. It is this spiritual energy which is the foundation of the material realm and interacts with it in all phases, although unbeknownst to those who are spiritually unaware. To know the universe is to know that each atom is but a reflection of the Supreme Creator’s potency.

The Vedic literature explains how the material elements are created, and how they make systems and arrangements of forms from planets to various species of life. It describes how the material energy is directed and maintained to prevent it from sliding into deterioration, and how it is finally destroyed or wrapped up to merge back into the spiritual atmosphere. So in this book we will show by Vedic descriptions how the temporary material cosmic creation comes from the Supreme Being and the eternal spiritual nature, and what we are supposed to do while living here.

Vedic Culture: As Relevant Today as Ever

Vedic Culture: As Relevant Today as Ever

By Stephen Knapp

 By investigating the knowledge and viewpoints in the many topics found in Vedic culture we can certainly see that the practice and utilization of this Vedic knowledge can indeed assist us in many ways. In regard to all the trouble we presently find in this world, maybe it is time to look at things through a different and deeper view to find the answers and directions that are so needed. The knowledge and understandings of this great Vedic culture may indeed be what will help us see through the fog of confusion that seems to envelope so much of society.

            What we find in Vedic culture are areas of study, progress and expression that are as relevant today for human advancement as they were hundreds or thousands of years ago. India and its Vedic culture has contributed much to the world, such as its music, beautiful forms of art and architecture, martial arts, astronomy, holistic medicine in Ayurveda, and the mathematical system based on the number ten, along with its yoga and philosophy. In the United States, yoga has exploded into a three billion dollar industry. A recent survey (at the time of this writing in 2005) showed that 16.5 million people are practicing yoga, or 7.5 percent of the United States. Also, the Yoga Journal magazine has grown from a circulation of 90,000 in 1998, to 170,000 in 2000, to 325,000 in 2005.

            Vedic mathematics is another example of its contribution to world progress. It is an ancient development that continues to play an important part in modern society. Without the advancements in math that had been established by Vedic culture as far back as 2500 BC and passed along to others, such as the Greeks and Romans, we would not have many of the developments and inventions that we enjoy today. The Greek alphabet, for example, was a great hindrance to calculating. The Egyptians also did not have a numerical system suitable for large calculations. For the number 986 they had to use 23 symbols. Even after the Greeks, the Romans also were in want of a system of mathematical calculations. Only after they adopted the Indian system that was called Arabic numerals did they find what they needed. Weights and measures and scales with decimal divisions had been found from that period which were quite accurate.

The difference was that Vedic mathematics had developed the system of tens, hundreds, thousands, etc., and the basis of carrying the remainder of one column of numbers over to the next. This made for easy calculations of large numbers that was nearly impossible in other systems, as found with the Greeks, Romans, Egyptians and even Chinese. The Vedic system had also invented the zero, which has been called one of the greatest developments in the history of mathematics.

The numeral script from India is said to have evolved from the Brahmi numerals. This spread to Arabia through traders and merchants, and from there up into Europe and elsewhere. It became known as the Arabic numerals, yet the Arabians had called them “Indian figures” (Al-Arqan-Al-Hindu) and the system of math was known as hindisat, or the Indian art.

Vedic culture already had an established mathematical system that had been recorded in the Shulba Sutras. These are known to date back to the 8th century BC. The name Shulba Sutras meant “codes of rope”. This was because such calculations were used for measuring precise distances for altars and temple structures by using lengths of rope.

The Shulba Sutras were actually a portion of a larger text on mathematics known as the Kalpa Sutras. These and the Vedic mathematicians were recognized for their developments in arithmetic and algebra. Indians were the first to use letters of the alphabet to represent unknowns. But they were especially known for what they could do in geometry. In fact, geometrical instruments had been found in the Indus Valley dating back to 2500 BC. Furthermore, what became known as the Pythagorean theorem was already existing in the Baudhayana, the earliest of the Shulba Sutras before the 8th century BC. This was presented by Pythagoras around 540 BC after he discovered it in his travels to India. So this shows the advanced nature of the Vedic civilization.

After the Shulba Sutras, Vedic mathematics enjoyed further development in the field of Jyotish, Vedic astronomy, which used all forms of math. Indian mathematicians continued creating systems that were not known in Europe until much later in the Renaissance period. For example, Aryabhatta in the 5th century introduced sines and versed sines, and is credited as the inventor of algebra. He is said to be the first to state that the Earth travels around the sun. However, the ancient Vedic texts have described this many years earlier, which shows the wisdom of the early Vedic seers.

 Aryabhatta was followed by Brahmagupta (7th century) who was the great mathematician that especially developed the use of zero and was the first to use algebra to solve problems in astronomy. Next was Mahavira (9th century) who made great strides in the use of fractions and figuring out how to divide one fraction by another. Then there was Bhaskara (12th century) who made progress in spherical trigonometry and principles of calculus before Newton by 500 years. He used it to determine the daily motion of planets.

The Vedic system of math, as explained in the sutras, also reduced the number of steps in calculations to merely a few that otherwise required many steps by conventional methods. Thus, this ancient science is still worthy of study today.

In 600 BCE, Sushruta recorded complicated surgeries like cesareans, cataract, artificial limbs, fractures, urinary stones and even plastic surgery and brain surgery. Usage of anesthesia was well known in ancient India. Over 125 surgical instruments were used. Deep knowledge of anatomy, physiology, etiology, embryology, digestion, metabolism, genetics and immunity is also found in many texts.

A well-developed medical system was in existence by the 1st century A.D. Progress in medicine led to developments in chemistry and the production of medicine, alkaline substances and glass. Colorfast dies and paints were developed to remain in good condition over the centuries. The paintings in the caves of Ajanta are a testimony to this.

            Vedic art is another ancient development that still holds much appreciation in modern times. Art in the Vedic tradition was never a mere representation of an artist’s imagination. It was always a vehicle to convey higher truths and principles, levels of reality that may exist beyond our sense perception. It was always used to bring us to a higher purpose of existence and awareness. In this way, it was always sacred and beheld the sacred. Still today it is used to allow others to enter into a transcendental experience. It may also present the devotional objects of our meditation.

Vedic paintings or symbols are unique in that they can deliver the same spiritual energy, vibration and insight that it represents. In other words, through the meditation and devotional mood of the artist, the art becomes a manifestation of the higher reality. In this way, the painting or symbol becomes the doorway to the spiritual essence contained within. They are like windows into the spiritual world. Through that window we can have the experience of darshan of the Divine or divinities, God or His associates. Darshan is not merely seeing the Divine but it is also entering into the exchange of seeing and being seen by the Divine.

 Thus the art, or the Deity, is beyond mundane principles or ingredients, such as paint, paper, stone or metal with which it may be made, but it becomes completely spiritual through which the Deity can reveal Himself or Herself. Thus, the truth of spiritual reality can pierce through the darkness of the material energy and enter our mind and illuminate our consciousness.

To convey higher realities in paintings and sculpture, everything has a meaning. The postures, gestures, colors, instruments or weapons, everything conveys a principle or purpose, which often must be explained to those who lack understanding. Thus, knowing the inner meaning of the painting increases its depth for those who can perceive it, which makes it worthy of further meditation and contemplation.

            As with art, dance in India was not merely an expression of an artist’s emotional mindset or imagination, but was meant to be an interpretation or conveyance of higher spiritual principles or pastimes of the Divine. In fact, in the Vedic pantheon Shiva is known as Nataraja, the king of dancers. Shiva’s dance was also not without a more significant purpose. His dance was based on the rhythm of cosmic energy that pervades the universe, and the destruction of the illusory energy by which all souls are given the opportunity for release from the illusion to attain liberation, moksha.

            In this way, traditional Indian dance is highly spiritual and often accompanies important religious rituals and holy days and festivals. Vedic dance goes back to prehistoric times. Bharata Muni wrote his Natya Shastra, science of drama and dance, over 2000 years ago. In it he explains that it was Lord Brahma, the secondary engineer of the universal creation, who brought dance (natya) and drama to the people of Earth millions of years ago, shortly after the Earth was created.

Now dance has evolved into a tradition involving various schools and styles but with strict discipline. It is not uncommon that Indian families will have their daughters spend at least several years or more in such study and practice. There is a precise method of postures, facial and hand gestures (mudras), and movements, along with footwork that must be learned and synchronized to the beat and music in order to convey specific meanings, moods and stories to the audience. Many temples, especially in South India, were known for maintaining large groups of dancers that performed at festivals and religious functions. 

When the dance is performed according to the spiritual standards, which some view as similar to the practice of yoga, even the dancers can invoke a high degree of spirituality in their own consciousness and bring unity between their inner selves and God. Then the transcendental atmosphere can manifest and draw the Divine to appear in the performers on stage. Thus, the environment becomes transformed and the audience may also experience darshan of the Divine and experience an inspiring upliftment in their own consciousness. In this way, the dance is divine beauty in motion. Or it is a way of invoking the spiritual dimension into our midst. Few other forms of dance attempt to do this. 

Various schools of dance include Bharata Natyam, Kathakali, Manipuri, Orissi, Kathak, Mohini Atam, Krishna Atam, Bhagavata Mela, etc. Thus, we may have many dances that convey stories from the Ramayana and Mahabharata, or Krishna-lila from the Bhagavata Purana. Nowadays this ancient art of Indian dance is enjoying a wide audience and a prominent place on the international stage.

            So, as we can see, Vedic culture and its many areas of knowledge and devotional expression are still as relevant today as it was thousands of years ago. And humanity can benefit from it by introspection and in spiritual as well as material development as it did in the past.

            The power of the Dharma and the relevancy of Vedic culture are found in the number of tools it has always provided in order for humanity to reach its fullest potentials, both as individuals who are searching for their own fulfillment and spiritual awakening, and as a society that can function in harmony with nature and cooperation amongst themselves.

By investigating the knowledge and viewpoints in the many topics found in the Vedic tradition we can certainly see that the practice and utilization of this Vedic knowledge can indeed assist us in many ways. Let us take a look at a few.

 

AYURVEDA

                Ayurveda is the Vedic system of holistic medicine. It has become quite popular in the West and is continuing to gain ground and acceptance. To understand briefly what Ayurveda is, I let Pratichi Mathur, an Ayurvedic practitioner herself, tell us about it from the book, “Vedic Culture: The Difference It Can Make in Your Life”:

            “So what is Ayurveda exactly? Literally translated from Sanskrit it is composed of two words ‘Ayus’ which means life and ‘Veda’ which denotes knowledge. So Ayurveda is the knowledge of healthy living and is confined not only to the treatment of diseases. Life is a vast, and an all-encompassing phenomena, which includes death. On one end, life is a celebration of birth, growth, child bearing, youth and sexuality; on the other end, life also brings forth disease, decay, aging, and loss of vigor. Ayurveda is that ancient art and science that helps us understand this very ‘life’ with all its different shades and colors; understand how best we can undertake this journey; and how we transition through its different phases, example from teenage, to adulthood, to maturity, etc. Following the principles of Ayurveda brings about a profound understanding of the inner ability to have sound body, mind and spirit. From this point of view, Ayurveda is a compendium of life and not disease. This is a major agenda indeed for any system of medicine, but can it be any less–especially if true healing has to take place. Perhaps, this is exactly why Ayurveda manages to get to the root of the disease that distresses the mind or the emotion that ails the body.

            “Ayurveda has twin objectives–maintaining the health of the healthy, and cure illnesses of the diseased. Ayurveda, which is not just a system of disease and its management, but literally a living dynamic philosophy and manual on the art of living, is well fitted to meet its objectives. On one hand Ayurveda offers treatments like Panchakarma or even surgery for the diseased; and on the other hand Ayurveda offers preventative medicine for the healthy. These include elaborate details for following ideal daily and seasonal routines, specialized diets for optimizing health and immunity (Ojas), Rasayana Chikitsa (promotive therapy), Vajikarna Chikitsa (aphrodisiac therapy), Swasthavritta (regimen to stay healthy furnishing details on topics such as exercise, smoking for health), Sadachar (social hygiene), etc.

            “Ayurveda advocates a complete promotive, preventive and curative system of medicine and includes eight major clinical specialties of medicine namely, (1) Medicine (Kayachikitsa), (2) Surgery (Salya Tantra), (3) ENT (Salakya Tantra), (4) Pediatrics (Kaumatabhritya), (5) Psychiatry (Bhutvidya), (6) Toxicology (Agad Tantra), (7) Nutrition, rejuvenation and geriatrics (Rasayan tantra), and (8) Sexology and virilization (Vajikarana). This shows what a developed science Ayurveda was in ancient times.

            “The exact origin of Ayurveda is lost in the mists of antiquity. Since Panini is placed at 7th century BC and Ayurveda depicts non-Paninian Sanskrit grammar, it is logical to place Ayurveda between 6th –10th Century BC. Tracing the continuity of Ayurveda, it is natural to look for the continuing thread in India’s ancient Vedic tradition. Although the term Ayurveda, does not seem to appear in the Vedas, and it appears first in Panini’s Ashtadhayayi, however, there are positive evidences to show that in the Vedic period, medicine as a profession was prevalent. The Rig Veda and the Atharva Veda both mention that there were thousands of medical practitioners and thousands of medicines. References to Ayurveda are found as early as the Rig Veda. The three Rig Vedic gods Indra, Agni and Soma relate to the three biological humors: Vata, Pitta and Kapha. References are made of organ transplants as in the case of the artificial limb of queen Vishpala, daughter of King Khela. The functions of physicians are also described in the Rig Veda.

            “Rishi Sushruta, famous Ayurvedic Surgeon, also holds that Ayurveda is a supplement (upanga) of the Atharva Veda. While several other sources including the famous Hindu epic Mahabharata speak of Ayurveda as an upanga of Atharva Veda; several other schools of thought hold Ayurveda as a fifth Veda (Panchamveda). Perhaps Ayurveda grew from Atharva Veda first as a branch and then as a comprehensive vast system deserving it’s own status, or it developed parallel to the four Vedas as an independent knowledge (with close resemblance to the Atharva Veda).”

 

JYOTISH: VEDIC ASTROLOGY

            Jyotish is the Vedic form of astrology, which is an ancient science and is also being accepted and gaining popularity in the West. Vedic Astrology is meant to help the individual better find his or her way through life. It is to assist in discovering one’s highest proclivities, personality, character, qualities and traits and what may be one’s best direction for a career, and other things. Thus a person will least likely waste one’s time in unfulfilling activities, professions or pursuits.

            To further our understanding of Jyotish, I let Chakrapani Ullal, one of the most well-known Vedic Astrologers, describe it as taken from the book, “Vedic Culture: The Difference It Can Make in Your Life”: 

            “We turn our attention now to the subject of a branch of the Vedas called Vedic astrology or Jyotish, which is called the ‘eye of the Vedas’. It has a cognizing influence of the truth of life and self-knowledge. It acts as a mirror to an individual without which one may not know how to approach life most effectively. It is also called the ‘Science of Time’. Time is the source power that rules the universe. All things originate through the procession of time. Hence, Vedic Astrology constitutes the science that maps the structure of time. Astrology is considered divine knowledge that is pure, supreme, secret, and exalted.

            “Astrology can be defined as the science of correlations of astronomical facts with terrestrial events, and demonstrates the Vedic understanding of the universal interconnectedness and interdependence of all phenomenon, that microcosm and macrocosm are but reflections of one another. Just as mathematics is the organizing principle of science when dealing with inanimate matter, so also astrology is the organizing principle which deals with life and its significance in relation to all living bodies. The planets are seen as reflectors or transmitters of light and solar energy. The solar and planetary rays, like radio waves, affect biological and psychological processes. The rays of influence are unseen vibrations that are not perceptible to the physical eye.

            “Astrology gives insight and guidance to the fortunes and misfortunes of men, issues of empires and republics, floods and earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, plagues, pestilence and other incidents concerning terrestrial phenomena in relation to the regular movements of the planets. 

            “Over 10,000 years ago the ancient sages, in their super-conscious state, cognized that there is energy in planets, and that they send out different rays at different angles which bear influence on everything animate and inanimate on other planets. Through their sensitized intuition and repeated observations these highly evolved souls were able to find out the different characteristics inborn in the planets and also discovered that each rules a distinctive part of the human mind/body. It was also found that particular groups of stars known as constellations have different characteristics, and that they modulate the influence of the planets.

            “Astrologers say that there are two forces, Daiva and Purushakara, fate and individual energy. The individual energy can modify and even frustrate fate. Moreover, the stars often indicate several fate possibilities; for example, that one may die in mid-age, but that if, through determination, one gives attention in that area it can be overcome, one can live to a predictable old age. Thus, astrology does not say that events must and should happen, but gives the benefic and malefic tendencies which can be directed or modified through conscious effort. The horoscope shows a man’s character and temperament. Though it may show that he could become a criminal, it does not mean he is fated to become so. What it means is that he is just the sort of person who will have criminal tendencies, but they can be checked by proper care and training. Additionally, if emotional and financial challenges are indicated in any particular year, one can certainly meet the crisis better if one knows that it might occur. 

            “Then, how would one define astrology? It is the philosophy of discovering and analyzing past impulses and future actions of both individuals and nations in the light of planetary configurations. Astrology explains life’s reactions to planetary vibrations.”

 

VEDIC GEMOLOGY

            Gemology is an important field in today’s market. But when we speak of Vedic gemology, we do not mean that it is merely for judging the value of a gem. The Vedic purpose in gemology is to determine the best type of quality gem for a person to wear. Thus, Vedic gemology worked in conjunction with Ayurveda and Jyotish to establish the best gem a person should wear for health and positive influence. To give a little more understanding about this increasingly recognized field, I include the following description by Howard Beckman, a qualified and practicing Vedic gemologist, from the book, “Vedic Culture: The Difference It Can Make in Your Life”:

“It is a field that is making great strides medically by using gems for illness and disease both of the physical body and the mind. It is a noninvasive therapy that has produced definite repeatable results medically. (It should be noted that only natural gems, not synthetic, have this inherent energy and also that certain gem treatments commonly used for color or clarity enhancement will render the gem ‘dead’ and ineffective.) Our research and record keeping of case histories of gem use in jewelry for astrological reasons has also allowed us to not only prove the efficacy of gems, but in “debunking” commonly held incorrect notions as far as how to recommend them, as well as baseless superstitions.

            “It is the energy force of the cosmos that sustains all living organisms. This energy is called ‘prana’. It energizes our bodies throughout life until it leaves at the time of death, leaving the gross material body to decay and return to the elements from which it arose. The Vedic scriptures calculate our life spans in the number of breaths we are allotted during our lives. If we use this energy more quickly, then the life span will be shorter. (Long distance runners are renowned for dying in their 50’s.) If we conserve our energy, especially through systems such as the yoga system, then the life span may be extended. The Ayurvedic system of healing first evaluates the intake and distribution of prana within both the physical and subtle (ethereal) bodies of an individual.

            “Gem therapy has been used by many ancient cultures and especially the wearing of gemstones on the body had great significance for the Vedic culture, other than the purely cosmetic or ornamental value that gems are mostly used for today. The science of Ayurveda when combined with Vedic astrology gives a wealth of knowledge in the correct application of gemstones to amplify planetary rays, which can have a dynamic effect on one’s physical and emotional health, one’s ability to prosper materially, and the general well-being of individual persons here on earth.

            “As Gems have such vibratory qualities, we may utilize them to not only affect the brain, but also the higher vibrations in the physical body necessary for healthy functioning of all our internal and external organs.  Dr. Young and Bruce Tainio of Cheny University in Washington have made the following statements from their research in this regard. ‘The average frequency of the human body during the daytime is between 62 and 68 cycles per second. If it drops below this rate the immune defense system will start to shut down. Cold symptoms appear at 58 cycles, flu at 57, candida at 55, glandular fever at 52, and cancer at 42 cycles per second’.

            “Natural (meaning from the earth, which does not include synthetic, man-made material), untreated gemstones, which are repositories of cosmic colors, can restore the pranic energy to the cells of the body, so that its natural vibratory rate and normal health may be regained when it is in a diseased condition. Blue sapphire can tranquilize or have a sedative effect. Emerald can be used as an analgesic. Yellow sapphire has antiseptic properties, and diamond’s ability to stimulate cell growth are just a few examples of how gems can affect the healing process in the body.”

 

 VASTU SHASTRA

            Vãstu is the Vedic science of architectural and home arrangement. It made its way through the orient and became known as Feng Shui, which has made particular progress in popularity in the West. However, Vastu is a particular science that deals with the flow of energy through a house or building for the highest benefits. It is not enough to merely arrange a house so it looks nice or that there is a good flow of energy through it. But there is much that depends on the directions in which things are facing or which parts of the building in which certain activities are performed.

            To get a little more insight into the Vedic science of Vãstu, I have included the following description by Arun Naik, an architect that practices the science and art of Vãstu Shãstra. Again, this is taken from the book, “Vedic Culture: The Difference It Can Make in Your Life”: 

            “The Vedic and the Agamic traditions of ancient India always held that the microcosm is a reflection of the macrocosm. A dwelling is an ecological unit, a microcosm which reflects the Cosmos, the macrocosm. Vãstu Shãstra is the applied aspect of this philosophy, a highly refined method of creating a living space which is a miniature replica of the cosmos as perceived by the Vedas. Vãstu Shãstra is about emulating the attributes of the Cosmic Space, about bringing the divine sentinels of Cosmic Directions into our homes, about creating Harmony by creating a living environment where the forces of nature are balanced and at peace with each other.

            “Sri Aurobindo has said… ‘Indian sacred architecture of whatever date, style or dedication goes back to something timelessly ancient and now outside India almost wholly lost, something which belongs to the past, and yet it goes forward too, though this the rationalistic mind will not easily admit, to something which will return upon us and is already beginning to return, something which belongs to the future.’ (SA, The Renaissance in India)

            “There is a prayer is Sama Veda:

May there be peace in the sky, may there be peace in mid region, may there be peace on earth, may there be peace in the waters, may the medicinal plants be peaceful, may the forest be peaceful, may there be peace in gods, may Brahma be peaceful, may all the creation be peaceful, may there be peace and peace only, may such peace come to us.

“Vãstu is about creating an Inner Space, the chidakash, where this divine peace can park itself. And it achieves it by creating a harmonious external environment–the bahyakash.

“At a more earthly level, Vãstu Shãstra aims at establishing a dynamic balance between Form and Energy so that harmonious conditions are created for the inhabitants. Vãstu buildings have harmonious energies and they promote stability, prosperity, happiness, and mental peace for the occupants and owners.

            “The principle of Vãstu is that the Cosmic World with its order and stern discipline has been built by the gods who occupy all the spaces, from the celestial Space within the Cosmic World to the little spaces in our homes, and even our mental space, chidambaram. Man’s existence in the Cosmic World has a purpose: it must ascend to immortality and godhood; and the gods, having occupied man’s inner Space, strive to create different states in man’s consciousness for his ascension from mortality and low nature to Truth, godhood and immortality. Vãstu Shãstra helps the effort of the gods by creating an external space–a dwelling, a place to worship and meditate, or a place to work by applying the same laws which the gods have used to create the Cosmic World. This, indeed, is the ultimate function and the highest objective of Vãstu Shãstra.”

 *  *  *

            So here we can see how various aspects of the ancient Vedic culture are still applicable today and can provide assistance in our attempts to reach our highest potential, both materially and spiritually. This is the constant and higher nature of the power of the dharma that can be recognized and utilized generation after generation.

Vastu Shastra: An Introduction to the Science of Building a House

Vastu Shastra

An Introduction

To The Science of Building a House

  

Every creature in this world tries to arrange for a place in which to live comfortably, enjoying all the luxuries and happiness of this world getting maximum benefits of heavenly boons.

Most every one is aspiring for having sound health, beautiful wife, healthy children, wealth, means of earning through business, profession or state service, high reputation in society and over all mental and spiritual peace. The sea animals and amphibians prepare a dwelling place on the sea shore, the birds build nests in the trees, the insects make a hive, and human beings are ambitious for making a house on the earth where all the liabilities towards this world and towards heaven can be fulfilled without any disturbance and trouble.

Therefore, aware of the need of a house and in order to avoid troubles, man wants to construct a house on such a ground where he can feel all sorts or happiness and can lead a peaceful life free of troubles and enemies, thereby deriving spiritual peace.

With this aim in his mind, he sets out in search of the learned wise persons who can guide him in selecting a site (plot) of his choice, and also in construction of the house. He wants to know the proper auspicious time, and principles (laws) of constructing the house.

Also he has in mind the colony or city, neighborhood, sources of water, natural environment, means of transport, etc. while selecting a plot for building a house, at the same time he thinks of his own interests and profits. The external features of the plot can be known with the help of persons living around or nearby the flat. But the quality and nature of the land can be judged only by Shastra. Therefore the selection of a site and the plan of the building is constructed only after consultation and seeking advice of expert astrologer and Vaastu Specialist.

There are sayings such as:

Nadi Shotriyo Raja Devagyo Na Chikitasak Tatra Vaso Na Kartavaya

A place where there is no river (Source of water – pond or well, etc.), scholar, astrologer, ruler and medical expert, should not be selected for living thereon, it should be rejected.

Dushta Bharya Shath Mitra Bhratiyaschottar Dayak;
Sasarpe Ch Grahey Vaso Mirturev Na Sanshaya.

If there is house in which lives an unfaithful wife, a foolish friend, an outspoken servant and a snake, the owner of such a house may die at any moment.

If such things are associated with the house constructed by someone, the life of the inmates become troublesome and unhappy, and there is always a fear of death.

Therefore, everyone is curious to know as to what is Vaastu Shastra, and what principles and methods regarding the construction of buildings have been given by the ancient saints and seers on the basis of their experience and commands in the divine scriptures. With the help of Vaastu Shastra and Shilpashastra, knowledge about the better and auspicious way of construction of a house, the positions and direction of gates, doors and rooms, etc. in it, is gained so that a house may be built which will provide all round prosperity and happiness to the inmates. Thus, Vaastu Shastra provides some principles and rules on the guidelines of which suitable and comfortable buildings for residence, temples, etc. are built and towns, colonies are planned.

 

What is Vastu Shastra?

Vastu Shastra is an ancient science which helps one to get the natural benefits freely offered by the five basic elements of the universe in which we all live. These basic elements are Akash (SKY), Prithvi (EARTH), Paani (WATER), Agni (FIRE), and Vayu (WIND). Vastu Shastra can be applied by keeping in harmony with these basic five elements of nature.

One sometimes feels that in spite of having all the required resources for achieving success in the work field one is not getting the desired and deserved result and it should not be a surprise to oneself that it could be due to the fact that either one’s office or factory is not planned according to the science of Vastu Shastra.

Similarly, one might feel that the wheel of family life is not moving smoothly and there is lack of peace, harmony, affection and well being in one’s family. One should get the architecture of his house examined and if need be modified as per Vastu Shastra, one is bound to expect good results and well being gradually and steadily.

We sincerely hope that Vastu Shastra one day will end all miseries and sorrows and bring joy and happiness in everybody’s life.

 

Tips From Vastu

  1. The main entrance should be in the East or North but it should not be in front of the compound wall.

  2. The wall of the house in the North-Eastern side should have minimum height.

  3. If the wall of the house in the East is tall, it stalls the entry of prosperity, the Goddess Laxmi, into the house. Therefore, it should be small in height.

  4. The southern side of the house should be as tall and heavy as possible.
    In any room of the house the beam or column should not cross in the center.

  5. Terrace or balcony in the house should be either in the East or the North.

  6. A well, pole or a temple should not be there in front of the main entrance of the house.

  7. The slope of the house should be towards East, North or North-East.
    Similarly, the slope of the plinth also should be towards East, North or North-East.

  8. The height of the plinth should be maximum in the direction of South-West.

  9. The main entrance of the house should not be in front of that of the opposite house.

  10. The house should be equipped with the protective wall.

  11. The upper storeys of the house should be constructed on the Southern or Western part.

  12. The cupboard in the wall should be the Southern or Western part direction of the house.

 

Why Follow Vastu?

God is present in the direction of North-East, it is believed. That is why our ancestors always insisted on having a body of water in this direction to ensure prosperity. Now see the geographical location of a small nation like Japan one of the largest bodies of water in the form of the Pacific Ocean which explains the reason of its growing prosperity.

Take the example of Mumbai city. On its South-East side where Agni is located, is the atomic power plant and in the direction of North-East is the body of water, which is why when it is compared to other ports, Mumbai port is more prosperous.

The city of London is famous and rich because it is situated on more or less the ideal principles of Vastu Shastra.

It is found that at the root of the progress and prosperity of the cities like New York, London, Mumbai, Singapore, Hong Kong, etc. are always the benedictory principles of Vastu Shastra. It is also found that as one progresses towards the North-East in the United States of America the land becomes richer and richer.

Study the location and construction of the famous temple of Tirupati from the angle of Vastu Shastra. Its legendary prosperity is thanks mainly to the exemplary implementation of the principles of Vastu Shastra. The main temple is situated on the South-West side of the temple precinct. On its North-East direction is a lake and pond. The dining hall of the temple is on South-East side while the North-West and North side of the temple is allocated to the godown (storage place) for grains and items require in the kitchen. The entire temple precinct is of square shape as a result of which its axis and that of the Earth are perpendicular to each other. The main temple is occupying only the one fourth area of the total precinct and on its Eastern and Northern side is an  open area. Thus the Tirupati temple of Lord Balaji is an ideal place according to the norms of Vastu Shastra which is why it is the most prosperous temple on earth.

 

Other Questions on Vastu

Q. We have bought a house recently, but we could not really keep vastu shastra in mind. We have to name our house but we would like to keep a suitable name which we could not think of .

A. The name of your house is a very personal matter and should be kept keeping in view the aspirations of the family, your personal lifestyle and beliefs. Make a short list of names that fulfill the above criteria and then select one consciously. May the new house bring you harmony and abundance.

Q. Entrance to my home is from east, kitchen is on south, bedroom on southwest, living room on southeast, dining room on northwest. Please advise on the application of vastu to my kitchen.

A. The basic things you have to keep in mind should be as follows:
 

  1. Keep the Gas in the southeast corner of the kitchen

  2. Person should face the east while cooking.

  3. Drinking water should be in the northeast of the kitchen.

  4. Sink should be in the south portion of the kitchen.

 

Q. Could you suggest me vastu tips for the interior planning of my house?
 

A. For safe and sound interior planning of your house make sure that there is plenty of light, air with proper ventilation and minimum furniture.
 

Bed Room: The master bedrooms should be in the Southwest corner of the house. If the house has more than one floor, then it should be on the top-most floor. The ceiling should be level, this makes the energy of the room uniform, which in turn gives one a steady state of mind. Children’s room should be in the northwest or west side. To have a better concentration they should have a separate study close to their bedrooms.
 

Kitchen: The ideal place is the southeast corner of the building or a kitchen in the west of the building can also be tolerated.
 

Study Room: The best locations for this room are the north, west, northwest, east, and northeast. These directions attract the positive effects of Mercury for increasing brain power, Jupiter for increasing wisdom, Sun for increasing ambition and Venus helps in bringing about creativity in new thoughts and ideas.
 

Dining room: The dining room and kitchen should be on the same floor and it should be adjacent to the kitchen from the left. The entrance to the dining room and the main door should not be facing each other. The dining table should be square or rectangular in shape and should not be attached or folding against the wall.
 

Bathrooms: Bathrooms and toilets should be adjacent to the northeast corner. They should never be constructed in the center or in the southwest corner of the house. Drawing Room: It should always be constructed towards the north. The rooms located in the northern part of the house should be bigger in size as that compared to the rooms in the southern part of the house. They should be shorter to them in height by one to three inches. This is an important rule of Vastu Shastra. Furniture should be square or rectangular in shape.
 

Store Room: If essential then the store room should be constructed in the southern part of the building, otherwise grain and other provisions can be stored in the kitchen or in other rooms and cupboards. Things should not be stored in diwans and box beds because it affects the magnetic environment of the self and the room causing sleeping disorders. Waste Storage: Daily wastes from the kitchen should be kept covered in the southwest corner of the kitchen.
 

Height of Rooms: The rooms in the northern part of the house should be larger than the rooms in the southern side by 6-9 inches, and lower by 1-3 inches. Height of rooms should ideally be 12- 14 feet. Doors/Windows: As far as doors are concerned, the main door should be larger than the inner doors and all doors should open towards the walls. All windows should be at least 3 feet 6 above ground level, and should be at the same level from the top. Window openings should be on the northern and eastern sides of the buildings.

Q. What is Vastu Shastra?
 

A. VASTU SHASTRA is the traditional Indian system of architecture and design of Vedic origin. Vastu means the dwelling of humans and Gods. Many Vastu rules are derived from ‘Vastu Purusha Mandala’ which is depicted as a man lying with his head pointing north east, in a grid of usually 64 squares. The different directions and sectors are assigned to different Gods and Guardians. It aims at providing guidelines for proper construction. Vastu orientates, places and dictates the proportions of every detail in building lines, skylines, elongations, levels, slopes, water (underground and overhead), kitchen, bedrooms, toilets, staircase, heights of ceilings and roofs, entrances, loci of doors and windows, compound walls and so on. Vastu is affected with positive power of three elements: the earth, the water, the fire (the sun).

  1. Earth: was formed about 460 crore years ago and it was a fiery ball. In due course of time, the rocks melted and the surface has formed and acquired magnetism due to the magnetic particles embedded within. It has two poles, north pole and south pole.
     
  2. Sky: is the endless space surrounding the universe. The universal concept of sky is beyond the imagination and reach of human beings as it is never ending and eternal.
     
  3. Air (Atmosphere): is a composition of gases like oxygen, nitrogen, carbon-dioxide, helium, neon, crypton and vapor. Oxygen is life saving gas indispensable to living organism.
     
  4. Water: due to rainfall from clouds, water flowed into low lying area of earth’s surface and oceans were formed. The eternal water cycle is mystery of nature.
     
  5. Sun: sun plays a vital role in Vastu Shastra. It is a source of life on earth and this is the reason why Sun is worshipped as an incarnation of god or the potential source of creation on the earth.

Q. Does Vastu Shastra promise prosperity?
 

A. No, not really. Vastu Shastra cannot be directly linked with prosperity. It only suggests ways in which we can live in tune with the laws of nature so that we can be healthy and peaceful and work efficiently. The ancient texts of Vastu Shastra have probably claimed to bring prosperity, as an indirect consequence of being able to perform well at home and work.

Q. What is the role of religion in Vastu Shastra?
 

A. Vastu Shastra is a science – it has nothing to do with religion. It is true that over the years Vastu Shastra has imbibed religious overtones, but that does not seem to have been the original idea. The religious implications were probably inculcated by the proponents of the science, when they realized that the society of that time, being a God-fearing one, would not accept norms that strayed away from the notions of God.

Q. Which deity is worshiped in Vastu Shastra?
 

A. Religious icons have no place in science. The ancient text of Vastu Shastra did mention various Gods from Hindu mythology fixing their locations on the site and prescribing the offerings to be made to them, but that also seems to have been a ploy created by ancient scientists to convince the people to accept the Vastu norms.

Q. What is the significance of the Vastu Purusha?
 

A. The ‘Vastu Purusha’ is said to be the spirit of the site. It’s in the form of a human male and lies on the site with his head towards the east, his posture fitting exactly in a square. It was easier to get the anthropometrically and aesthetically correct dimensions of rooms, doors windows and even the structural members like plinth and pillars. Even the interior planning was governed by the posture of the ‘Vastu Purusha’ and the norms which specified where and how the structure must be built, so that it does not injure him.

Q. Vastu Shastra is so superstitious, how can it be called a science?
 

A. Vastu Shastra is a science. In the age when it was formulated, the society was largely illiterate, the illiteracy generating a fear of the unknown. Science was beyond the realm of their understanding while religion was omnipresent. It was therefore simpler for the ancient Vastu experts to spread the concepts of the Vastu Shastra through the intricate network of religion and superstition. Unfortunately, as time passed only the superstitious filtered down the generations, while the actual theory eluded the world.

Q. Is Vastu shastra relevant in the modern world?
 

A. All the ancient doctrines of Vastu Shastra may not be applicable in the present scenario. Some of the tenets particularly show a strong social bias, which was relevant to the social structure which existed at that time. Such tenets have certainly lost their significance. However the fundamentals of the theory can be adapted to the modern world. Unfortunately, again most of the modern Vastu exponents are also exploiting the layman ignorance and gullibility.

Q. How does Vastu Shastra work in apartment blocks?
 

A. It is a fact that the original Vastu tenets prescribed the type of site and then specified the layout materials and construction techniques. In an urban milieu, one can hardly indulge in choosing dwelling sites. Thus the macro level implications can be successfully adapted to contemporary needs.

Q. How can Vastu Shastra ba applied to the commercial and industrial premises?
 

A. The original texts of Vastu Shastra were confined to the architecture of temples, places and homes of the commoners. However, those very norms can be easily applied to other structures such as offices and industries. So if facing a particular direction brings in negative solar energy, the large machinery may be kept there to block it.

Q. What if it is not possible to implement all the changes recommended by a Vastu consultant?
 

A. It must first be noted that Vastu Shastra is not a religion. However God-fearing you may be, you should not feel threatened by Vastu Shastra because it is a science. Science does not condemn God, or disprove its identity but it does not accept it. Vastu Shastra is the science of structure, formulated to help us live in tune with nature. It does not give solutions to your domestic or financial problems.
A Vastu consultant assesses your home or work place, and suggests changes that will improve it’s Vastu compliance. If the assessment has been done in a systematic manner, it is obvious that implementing the more negative elements should yield substantially positive effects. Very often, merely changing the orientation of the interior fixture helps in achieving a Vastu-positive environment.

Q. What is the ideal plot/house?
 

A. The ideal plot is the one whose length and breadth are same and ideally facing each side of plot to exact north direction, south direction, east direction and west direction, and the house constructed in this plot shall also be ideal. If utility rooms are constructed as per the norms of Vastu Shastra the foundation should be 9 feet but due to the construction of sky rise multi-story buildings coming up, the depth of foundation shall depend on the load bearing capacity of soil, the number of storeys that are going to be constructed and the materials used.

Q. Why directions are important in Vastu Shastra?
 

A. The Sun, as our ancestors revealed, is the only source of light and heat for human and other living beings. It directs and sustains life on earth. Therefore, the Sun, the rising Sun is like God, and its direction of rising is considered pious and is taken as a point of reference. If we face the rising sun, the facing direction is called East, behind us shall be West, our left hand denotes North direction and right hand denotes South direction. Therefore, the effect of the direction affects the building/house constructed therein.

Q. What is the best direction of the house?
 

A. An auspicious direction for the house/building to face is the east or north direction. This is subject to other factors laid down as per Vastu Shastra.

Q. What should be the proportion of length and breadth of house?
 

A. Ideally, the proportion of length and breadth should be 1:1.

Q. Does the size of rooms affect the fortune of the persons residing?
 

A. Yes, the length, breadth or both effect the fortune of inmates.

Q. What are the main factors to be considered regarding the door of the house?
 

A. As per Vastu Shastra, the number of doors and windows of a house should be even in number.

Q. Can facing of the main door be decided?
 

A. Yes, the zodiac sign of the owner of the house, on whose name the deed of the house is made can be taken as reference and according to zodiac sign of the owner, the main door can be fixed. But since the houses are used generation after generation and in every generation the owner of house is changed the main door if fitted as per the location of plot and road abutting.

Q. How and why do inhabitants residing in FSI based constructed buildings face problems?
 

A. Residential Flats are being constructed like pigeon boxes. No open space is left in front of the main entrance door. If one door of a flat opens fully (outside which again is against vastu rules) another adjacent flat-owner will not be able to open his Main Entrance door fully. Then we observe that door is spliced into two parts 1/3 & 2/3 is recommended. The real problems starts here. Nowhere in the ancient literature, is the splitting of the main entrance door in portion 1/3 & 2/3. Kitchen is health and kitchens in such flats are not designed as per the tenets and rules of Vastu Shastra. Many a time, we observe that toilets in such flats are located in northeast. A family having a toilet in the northeast region of their place of residence will not be able to prosper in life.

Q. What are the planets associated with the directions in Vaastu Shastra ?

East Ravi Sun
South East Shukra Venus
South Angaraka Mars
South West Rahu Dragon’s Head
West Shani Saturn
North West Chandra Moon
North Budha Mercury
North East Guru Ketu Jupiter Dragon’s Tail

Q. According to the Vastu Shastra scriptures, what do all the various directions represent?
 

A. According to the Vastu Shastra scriptures, the various directions denote the following aspects:

East (Purab) Pitrustaan(Manes): It should not be blocked , since it is the source of male issues.

Southeast (Aagneya) (Fire) source of health, place of fire, cooking and food.

South (Dakshina)- Source of wealth, crops and happiness.

Southwest (Naryuthya)-(Earth) source of character, behavior, cause of longevity and death.

West (Paschima) Source of name, fame and prosperity

Northwest (Vaayavya) (Air) Source of change, income from business, enmity and friendship.

North (Uttara) Maathrusthan-This should not be blocked as it is the source of female issues.

Northeast (Eshanya) (Water) Source of health, wealth, prosperity and of male issues.

Q. Does the magnetic field of the earth have anything to do with Vastu Shastra?
 

A. Yes. Most Certainly. The magnetic field of the earth plays and important role while formulating Vastu Shastra which can significantly influence human life. According to Vastu Shastra, one should never keep his/her head towards the north while lying as it obstructs the circulatory system causing irregular sleep, tension, paranoia and other mental problems. The magnetic fields of the same poles repel each other while the opposite attracts each other, therefore a person should keep his/her head towards the south or east.

Q. What role does soil play in the selection of a plot?
 

A. According to Vastu Shastra, a plot with soil that has a large salt content is considered to be inauspicious. The ground water table should be minimum 10-12’ below the existing ground level and maximum 30’. It should not have any sanitary back-filled or reclaimed soil or rubbish, bones, hair and other filthy material. The soil should be fertile and free from any decrepit or dead material.

Q. Does Vastu Shastra apply to boundary walls as well?
 

A. Vastu Shastra holds the conviction that the boundary walls are an effective way of containing the energy level and the magnetic field of the plot. The wall should be thick and high in the western and the southern directions. In the north and the east a smaller, thinner wall is desired.

Q. What are the things that are to be kept in mind while selecting a plot?
 

A. The major factors to be kept in mind while selecting a plot are:

  1. Geographical surroundings,
  2. Level of the land,
  3. and Roads around the plot.

Q. Are there any conventions prescribed by Vastu Shastra that pertain to doors?
 

A. Anything that is an essential part of a home, is inscribed in the Vastu Shastra. Doors, in every sense, convey a lot of pertinent attributes about a house. Here are a few that Vastu defines:

  1. The Main-Gate should have two panels.
  2. The main door should not open inside the house.
  3. The doors in the house should not be noisy. The total number of doors, windows and ventilators in the house should be even in number for eg. 2, 4, 6 etc. but should not end with a 0 i.e. 10, 20, etc. If the front door frame is painted black, then the owner might have to face hardship.
  4. If the door has cracks or is too old, then the owner will have a tough time gaining respect in society.

Q. The staircase in my house is damaged. What does Vastu Shastra say to that?
 

A. If the steps leading to the entrance are damaged or broken, then the master of the house will face problems with his career and his expenses will soar. The staircase should ascend clockwise. The total number of steps should be such that on division by 3, a remainder of 2 should be obtained for eg. 7, 11, 17, etc.
 

Q. Does Vastu contain anything that relates to the color of paint on the interior walls?
 

A. It certainly does, the interior is one of the biggest parts of the house. Here is what Vastu Shastra says about interiors:

  1. Bright colors should not be used in the house.
  2. Cold and light colors should be used for painting the house.
  3. Paintings or photographs depicting war, sad faces, birds like owl, crow, pigeon, erotic pictures, etc. should not be used for decoration in the house.

 

CRYPTIC ASPECTS OF ARCHITECTURE

SCRIPTURAL ORIGIN OF VASTU SHASTRA

ORIGIN OF VASTU PURUSH
 

VASTU Shastra believes in the existence of VASTU Purush who is the main deity of a building. In this regard Rig Veda says:

“TAVA TVAM VAASTUNYU IMASI GA MADHYE
YATR GAVAU BHURI SHRINGA AVASAH ||”

That is VASTU has a relation with Griha devata (deity of the home)

According to Shatpath Brahmin (an ancient scripture), VASTU is the ruling deity of animal stock and the people living in a home.

The concept of VASTU Purush in VASTU Shastra is an ancient one. As per the scriptures, once a fierce battle took place in ancient times between a demon Andhakasur and Lord Shiva. During the battle, a few drops of Lord Shankar’s sweat fell on the ground and gave birth to a formidable monster. The monster at once began to kill the gods. Acting unitedly, then all the gods captured the monster and buried him with his face facing down. The gods also granted a boon to pacify him: “You shall be worshipped in all auspicious tasks.”

Since the gods made an abode on the monster, he came to be known as VASTU Purush. And since all the gods have an abode on him, he is worshipped by prudent people.

Vishwakarma is regarded as the father of VASTU Shastra. In his treatise, Vishwakarma Prakash,, he writes about the origin of VASTU Purush:

TAMEV VAASTU PURUSHAM BRAHMA SAMA SRIJATPRABHUH |
KRISHNPAKSHE TRITIYATA MASI BHADRPADE TATHA ||

In Treta-yuga on the third day of the dark phase of the lunar month Bhadrpad, Brahma created a formidable man. Even the gods were frightened by his appearance. Then by Brahma’s consent, all the gods pushed him down, with his face downward and themselves sat on him.

The formidable man then appealed to Brahma: “O Lord, you have created this cosmos. This body is also yours. Why then these gods are torturing me without reason? Tell me how should I behave with the gods.”

Pleased Brahma said: “Since this moment your worship shall be indispensable in every auspicious construction work because of your presence beneath the gods. Those who won’t worship you for any reason shall have to suffer penury and untimely death. They shall have to face your wrath and hence obstacles in everything they do.”

ATRIYAM MRITYUMAPNOTIVIGHN VAKTASAYAPADE-PADE |
VAASTU PUJAM AVARNAH TAVAHARU BHAVISHYATI ||

Therefore in the beginning of a building’s construction, installation of doors and on the occasion of making first entry into newly built home, worship of VASTU is more than a must. Apart from these occasions, on every auspicious task offerings ought to be made into fire according to one’s strength.

ORIENTATION OF VAASTU PURUSH IN A PLOT OF LAND

The VASTU Purush is lain with his face downward. His head points to north-east, while feet point together to southwest. His right hand and the joint of right leg point toward southeast, while left hand and joint of left leg point to northwest.

KNOWLEDGE OF DIRECTION AND THEIR SIGNIFICANCE

In VASTU Shastra, eight directions – North, East, West, South, Northeast, Southeast, Southwest and Northwest are considered important. If you are planning to build your bungalow or any other building on the basis of VASTU Shastra, first of all you should have knowledge of your plot’s direction. Then you should decide in which direction you ought to keep your main gate. You may if necessary, take the help of a compass to know the directions.

As the numerals have their apparent influence of human life, similarly influence of the directions is also apparent. Richness or penury of a person can be known from the location of his house. In which direction is his house located? Which direction does the entrance of his house face? How is the interior decoration? These and other related things reveal the economic condition of a person. Similarly changes that must be made in order to bring prosperity and to prevent imminent danger or crisis can also be known with the help of VASTU Shastra.

As everybody knows there are four major directions – east, west, north and south. Besides these, four sub-directions are also considered. These are Agney (Southeast), Nairitya (Southwest), Vayavya (Northwest) and Ishaan (northeast). Each of these directions and sub-directions has its own merits and demerits and yields results accordingly. Every direction has a deity or lord that rules it.

EAST: Indra is the ruling deity of the east. He was born out of Brahma’s mouth and is capable of destroying enemies. He can appear in any form as per his wishes. He is also the lord of rains and has the wind as his assistant. Increment in wealth, cereals and animal stock can be effected through worshipping Indra. Indra is also the king of the heaven. Elephant Airavat is Indra’s vehicle and Vajra (lightning) in his weapon.

The east is also the abode of gods like Surya, Agni, Indra, Jayant, Ish, Parjanya, Satya, Bhup and Akash.

The east is also known as a direction of lineage. During the construction of the house, some portion must be left open in the east. It leads to long life for the owner.

WEST: The west is the opposite of the east. No work can progress in the west. Varun (Neptune) is the lord of this direction, which is under the influence of sage Agastya. The sea is the abode of Varun (Neptune). He therefore has most influence on the water bodies. A proper utilization of westerly portion of plot leads to reputation, fame, prosperity and success for the owner.

NORTH: Kuber is the lord of this direction. Literally, Kuber means the one who controls the imminent events and causes increments. He has inaccessible wealth and property. Kuber is the king of Yakshas and Kinnars and is a friend of Rudra (Shiva). Kailash is the abode of Kuber who has three legs, eight hands and a yellow dot in place of eyes.

Mercury is the planet that rules the north. It is more influential in the dark phase of every lunar month. North is a also an abode of the gods like Kuber, Diti, Aditi, Shail, Naga and Bhallat, etc.

North is also a place of mother. Leaving some portion open in north leads to prosperity of maternal side as well as provides wealth, comforts, peace etc. for the owner.

SOUTH: Yama is the lord of this direction. He is the son of Surya and is hostile towards Vishnu. Nakshatra Bharani is the most important for him. During the last eight days of the lunar months of Ashwin and Kartika this nakshatra is more influential. South direction weakens human life, hence all the auspicious tasks are forbidden in the south. South is also an abode of the gods like Yama, Gandharvas, Mriga, Pusha, Vitath and Kshat. In all the south direction yields nothing but mourning, depression and pain.

AGNEYA (SOUTHEAST): Direction that lies midway between the east and the south is known as Agneya (southeast). Agni (fire) is the lord of this direction. He is the preserver and defender of every being. Agni also carries the message of people who worship and offer oblations with devotion to God.

Worshippers of Agni are economically strong and long living. Agni himself takes care of the people who make offerings into him. Agni also provides them with comfort, peace, prosperity and progeny.

While constructing a house, the first pillar must be erected in the southeast direction. Alternatively, kitchen of the house should occupy a place in this direction. This is the foremost and an important rule of VASTU Shastra. First day of every month also represents the element fire.

A warm Agneya direction makes a man healthy, whereas a faulty use makes the owner short tempered.

NAIRITYA (SOUTHWEST): It lies midway between the south and the west directions. Nairitya is the ruling lady of this direction. Literally, Nairitya means repeated happening – whether be it the birth of a baby or any other event. It also means that anything not done at proper time can’t have a repetition. If the house is built in this direction, the home suffers continuous decay.

The southwest portion of the house should never be left open, nor should a pit be dug in this direction. This direction is an abode of demons and ghosts. To prevent the accumulation of inauspicious and pain causing things, digging of pit in southwest is prohibited. If for some reason, digging is necessary it should be covered as early as possible or a sapling be planted in its place.

VAYAVYA (NORTHWEST): It lies mid way between the west and the north. Vayu (wind) is the lord of this direction. Five kinds of Vayu – Prana, Upana, Samana, Vyana and Udana, are necessary for human life. Hanumana and Bheema are the representations of Vayu. Those who worship Vayu in the form of Hanumana get their desired results at once.

Northwest angle is the progenitor of friendship or enmity. Hence, a faulty use of this portion of plot may result in a majority of enemies. If you use this angle of your plot wisely and flawlessly, you will have many friends who will undoubtedly benefit you.

ISHANYA (NORTHEAST): The angle that lies midway between north and the east is known as Ishanya (northeast) direction. Shiva is the lord of this angle. Pashupat is the weapon of Shiva. Nakshatra Ardra is the symbol of Lord Shiva. Semul (silk-cotton) tree is considered auspicious in this direction.

Worshipping of the ruling God of this direction yields many virtues in the life of the worshipper. The portion of the house in this direction must be kept holy for it yields many kinds of divine powers to the owner. Proper utilization of this portion of house provides wealth, reputation, property and every kind of excellence for the owner. A faulty utilization of this angle, however, may block successful continuation of progeny.

UFOs and Vimanas

UFOs and Vimanas

By Stephen Knapp

In supplying information about the advancements of Vedic science, the subject of Vedic airplanes, vimanas, is almost in a classification of its own. Some of this information is so amazing that for some people it may border science fiction. Nonetheless, as we uncover and explain it, it provides serious food for thought.

First of all we need to understand that the Vedic conception of universal time is divided into different periods. For example, a period called one day of Brahma is equivalent to 4,320,000,000 of our years on earth. Brahma’s night is equally as long and there are 360 of such days and nights in one year of Brahma. Each day of Brahma is divided into one thousand cycles of four yugas, namely Satya-yuga, Treta-yuga, Dvapara-yuga, and finally the Kali-yuga, which is the yuga we are presently experiencing. Satya-yuga lasts 1,728,000 years, and is an age of purity when all residents live very long lives and can be fully developed in spiritual understanding and mystical abilities and remarkable powers. Some of these abilities, or mystic siddhis, include changing one’s shape, becoming very large or microscopically small, becoming very heavy or even weightless, securing any desirable thing, becoming free of all desires, or even flying through the sky to wherever one wanted to go on one’s own volition. So at that time, the need for mechanical flying machines was not necessary.

As the yugas continued, the purity of the people, along with their mystical abilities, decreased by 25% in each age. The age of Treta-yuga lasts 1,296,000 years. During that age, the minds of humanity became more dense, and the ability for understanding the higher spiritual principles of the Vedic path was also more difficult. Naturally, the ability to fly through the sky by one’s own power was lost. After Treta-yuga, Dvapara-yuga lasts 864,000 years, and Kali-yuga lasts 432,000 years, of which 5,000 have now already passed. At the end of Kali-yuga, the age of Satya-yuga starts again and the yugas continue through another cycle. One thousand such cycles is one day of Brahma. Now that we are in Kali-yuga, almost all spiritual understanding disappears, and whatever mystical abilities that remain are almost insignificant.

It is explained that it was not until the beginning of Treta-yuga that the development of vimanas took place. In fact, Lord Brahma, the chief demigod and engineer of the universe, is said to have developed several vimanas for some of the other demigods. These were in various natural shapes that incorporated the use of wings, such as peacocks, eagles, swans, etc. Other vimanas were developed for the wiser human beings by great seers of Vedic knowledge.

In the course of time, there were three basic types of vimanas. In Treta-yuga, men were adept in mantras or potent hymns. Thus, the vimanas of that age were powered by means of knowledge of mantras. In Dvapara-yuga, men had developed considerable knowledge of tantra, or ritual. Thus, the vimanas of Dvapara-yuga were powered by the use of tantric knowledge. In Kali-yuga, knowledge of both mantra and tantra are deficient. Thus, the vimanas of this age are known as kritaka, artificial or mechanical. In this way, there are three main types of vimanas, Vedic airplanes, according to the characteristics of each yuga.

Of these three types, there is listed 25 variations of the mantrika vimanas, 56 variations of the tantrica vimanas, and 25 varieties of the kritakaah vimanas as we find today in Kali-yuga. However, in regard to the shape and construction, there is no difference between any of these vimanas, but only in how they were powered or propelled, which would be by mantras, tantras, or mechanical engines.

The controversial text known as Vimaanika Shastra, said to be by Maharshi Bharadwaja, also describes in detail the construction of what is called the mercury vortex engine. This is no doubt of the same nature as the Vedic Ion engine that is propelled by the use of mercury. Such an engine was built by Shivkar Bapuji Talpade, based on descriptions in the Rig-veda, which he demonstrated in Mumbai (Bombay), India in 1895. I more fully explained this in Chapter Three of this volume. Additional information on the mercury engines used in the vimanas can be found in the ancient Vedic text called the Samarangana Sutradhara. This text also devotes 230 verses to the use of these machines in peace and war. We will not provide the whole description of the mercury vortex engine here, but we will include a short part of William Clendenon’s translation of the Samarangana Sutradhara from his 1990 book, Mercury, UFO Messenger of the Gods:

“Inside the circular air frame, place the mercury-engine with its electric/ultrasonic mercury boiler at the bottom center. By means of the power latent in the mercury which sets the driving whirlwind in motion, a man sitting inside may travel a great distance in the sky in a most marvelous manner. Four strong mercury containers must be built into the interior structure. When those have been heated by controlled fire from iron containers, the vimana develops thunder-power through the mercury. At once it becomes like a pearl in the sky.”

This provides a most simplistic idea of the potential of the mercury engines. This is one kind of a propulsion mechanism that the vimanas of Kali-yuga may use. Other variations are also described. Not only do these texts contain directions on how to make such engines, but they also have been found to contain flight manuals, aerial routes, procedures for normal and forced landings, instructions regarding the condition of the pilots, clothes to wear while flying, the food to bring and eat, spare parts to have, metals of which the craft needs to be made, power supplies, and so on. Other texts also provide instructions on avoiding enemy craft, how to see and hear what occupants are saying in enemy craft, how to become invisible, and even what tactics to use in case of collisions with birds. Some of these vimanas not only fly in the sky, but can also maneuver on land and fly into the sea and travel under water.

There are many ancient Vedic texts that describe or contain references to these vimanas, including the Ramayana, Mahabharata, Rig-veda, Yajur-veda, Atharva-veda, the Yuktilkalpataru of Bhoja (12th century A.D.), the Mayamatam (attributed to the architect Maya), plus other classic Vedic texts like the Satapathya Brahmana, Markandeya Purana, Vishnu Purana, Bhagavata Purana, the Harivamsa, the Uttararamcarita, the Harsacarita, the Tamil text Jivakacintamani, and others. From the various descriptions in these writings, we find vimanas in many different shapes, including that of long cigars, blimp-like, saucer-shapes, triangular, and even double-decked with portholes and a dome on top of a circular craft. Some are silent, some belch fire and make noise, some have a humming noise, and some disappear completely.

These various descriptions are not unlike the reports of UFOs that are seen today. In fact, David Childress, in his book Vimana Aircraft of Ancient India & Atlantis, provides many reports, both recent and from the last few hundred years, that describe eye witness accounts of encounters with UFOs that are no different in size and shape than those described in these ancient Vedic texts. Plus, when the pilots are seen close up, either fixing their craft or stepping outside to look around, they are human-like, sometimes with a Oriental appearance, in clothes that are relatively modern in style. In other reports, we have read where the craft may have alien type beings on board along with ordinary humans navigating the craft.

Does this mean that these are ancient vimanas that still exist today? Are they stored in some underground caverns somewhere? Or are they simply modern-built, using the ancient designs as described in the Vedic texts? The UFOs that have been seen around the world may not be from some distant galaxy, but may be from a secret human society, or even military installation. However, many of the Vedic texts do describe interplanetary travel. So even if these space machines are from some other planet, they may be using the same principles of propulsion that have already been described in the universal Vedic literature. The answer awaits us.

Timings of the Four Ages

Timings of the Four Yugas

By Stephen Knapp

 

            When describing the length of the yugas or ages, and which yuga we are in and how far along we are in it, there is sometimes confusion about how to calculate them. Some people think we are already in the next Satya-yuga, known as the Golden Age. The problem is when the yugas are figured only according to the years in earth’s time, in which case any calculations will never be accurate. They are described in the Vedic literature according to the celestial years, or years of the devas, not according to the time we experience here on earth. This is where we have to make adjustments. Nonetheless, there are specific references in the Vedic texts which make it clear how to calculate them. For starters, the Mahabharata (Shanti Parva, 231.12-20) explains it in detail:

            “The rishis, measuring time, have given particular names to particular portions [of time]. Five and ten winks of the eye make what is called a Kastha. Thirty Kasthas make what is called a Kala. Thirty Kalas, with the tenth part of a Kala, make a Muhurta. Thirty Muhurtas make one day and night. Thirty days and nights form a month, and twelve months form a year. Persons well-read in mathematical science say that a year is made up of two solar motions, meaning the northern and southern. The sun makes the day and night for men. The night is for the sleep of all living creatures, and the day is for work. A month of human beings is equal to a day and night of the departed manes [ancestors who have gone on to the subtle worlds]. That division consists in this: the light half of the month is their day which is for work; and the dark fortnight is their night for sleep. A year (of men) is equal to a day and night to the gods [devas or celestials]. This division consists in this: the half year for which the sun travels from the vernal to the autumnal equinox is the day of the gods, and the half year for which the sun moves from the latter to the former is their night. [Thus, an earth year is but a day for the devas.] Calculating by the days and nights of human beings about which I have told you, I shall speak of the day and night of Brahma and his years also. I shall, in their order, tell you the number of years, that are for different purposes calculated differently, in the Krita, the Treta, the Dvapara, and the Kali Yugas. Four thousand celestial years is the duration of the first or Krita age. The morning of that cycle consists of four hundred years and its evening is of four hundred years. [Note: This says celestial years, or years of the demigods on the higher planets. Such years are much longer than those of planet earth. So 4000 celestial years, with the morning or Sandhya of 400 celestial years and the evening or Sandhyansa, or intermediate period, of another 400 years, equals 4800 celestial years or 1,728,000 human years.]

            “Regarding the other cycles, the duration of each gradually decreases by a quarter in respect of both the principal period with the minor portion and the conjoining portion itself. These periods always keep up the never-ending and eternal worlds. They who know Brahma, O child, regard this as Immutable Brahma.” (Mb, Shanti Parva, Chap.231, Text 21-22)

            This means that as each age appears, from the Krita, Treta, Dvapara to Kali, each yuga decreases by a quarter of the previous yuga, in addition to the conjoining Sandhya and Sandhyansa periods with each yuga. In this way, it is roughly calculated that a whole cycle of the four yugas, namely Krita, Treta, Dvapara and Kali-yuga together, total about 12,000 celestial years in length.

            The Mahabharata (Shanti Parva, 231.29-32) continues: “The learned say that these 12,000 celestial years form what is called a cycle. A thousand such cycles form a single day of Brahma. The same is the duration of Brahma’s night. With the beginning of Brahma’s day the universal entities come into being. During the period of universal dissolution the Creator sleeps in Yoga-meditation. When the period of sleep expires, He awakes. What is Brahma’s day covers a thousand such cycles. His night also covers a thousand similar cycles. They who know this are said to know the day and the night. On the expiry of His night, Brahma, waking up, modifies the indestructible intelligence by causing it to be overlaid with ignorance. He then causes Consciousness to spring up, whence it originates Mind which is at one with the Manifest.”

            In calculating the duration of the different yugas, there are a few differences between the Puranas. The Brahmanda Purana (1.2.29.31-34) specifically states that Krita or Satya-yuga is 1,440,000 human years in length, Treta-yuga is 1,080,000 years, Dvapara-yuga is 720,000 years, and Kali-yuga is 360,000 years in length. The Linga Purana (4.24-35) also agrees with this except for Treta-yuga, which it says is 1,800,000 years in length.

            However, when explaining the various measurements of time, the Vishnu Purana (Book One, Chapter Three) and the Srimad-Bhagavatam (3.11.19), along with the Bhagavad-gita (8.17) and the Vayu Purana (Chapter 57) and others, such as the Mahabharata as quoted above, all agree on the measurements of the durations of the yugas, as explained below.

            In the explanations of the measurements of time found therein, one cycle of the four yugas together is 12,000 years of the demigods, called divine years. Each of these years is composed of 360 days, and each of their days is equal to one human year. So Krita-yuga is 4000 divine years in length, Treta-yuga is 3000 divine years in length, Dvapara-yuga is 2000 divine years in length, and Kali-yuga is 1000 divine years long, with the addition of the conjoining portions of the Sandhya and Sandhyansa.

            In this way, each yuga is preceded by a period called a Sandhya, which is as many hundred years in length as there are thousands of years in that particular yuga. Each yuga is also followed by a period of time known as a Sandhyansa, which is also as many hundreds of years in length as there are thousands of years in the yuga. In between these periods of time is the actual yuga. Therefore, we have:

             Krita-yuga = 4000 divine years, Sandhya = 400 divine years, Sandhyansa = 400 divine years. Total = 4800 divine years x 360 days = 1,728,000 human years.

            Treta-yuga = 3000 divine years, Sandhya = 300 divine years, Sandhyansa = 300 divine years. Total = 3600 divine years x 360 days = 1,296,000 human years.

            Dvapara-yuga = 2000 divine years, Sandhya = 200 divine years, Sandhyansa = 200 divine years. Total = 2400 divine years x 360 days = 864,000 human years.

            Kali-yuga = 1000 divine years, Sandhya = 100 divine years, Sandhyansa = 100 divine years. Total = 1200 divine years x 360 days = 432,000 human years.

            This equals 4,320,000 human years in one cycle of the four yugas together, and 1000 cycles of these yugas equals 12,000 divine years and 4,320,000,000 human years in a day of Brahma.

            It is also explained that Kali-yuga began with the disappearance of Lord Krishna from the planet. This has been calculated to be 3102 B.C.. Since Kali-yuga is described as being 432,000 earth years in length, with 5,000 years and more already passed, then the age of Kali-yuga has approximately 426,000 more years to go. I hope this has clarified what is sometimes a confusing issue.

Seeing the Divinity in Everyone

Seeing the Divinity in

 Everyone

By Stephen Knapp

Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of the Aikido method of martial arts said: “Above all, one must unite one’s heart with that of the gods. The essence of God is love, an all-pervading love that reaches every corner of the universe. If one is not united to God, the universe cannot be harmonized. Martial artists who are not in harmony with the universe are merely executing combat techniques, not Aiki (Ai–uniting harmony and love with ki–the universal energy).”

This understanding is very important even in ordinary, everyday life. If we are not working in harmony with love and universal energy, we are simply going through daily routines that are ineffectual and empty. We need to practice the methods which also awaken the connection we have with God, the universe, and each other. This is the way we can fully grow and develop. Then our life will have meaning and purpose. We will be guided by our own upliftment and will be able to assist in the upliftment of others. We will be able to recognize the all-pervasiveness of the Supreme Being.

The essence of this perception has been related in the ancient Vedic texts, as we find in the Svetasvatara Upanishad (6.11) which states, “He is the one God hidden in all beings, all pervading, the self within all beings, watching over all worlds, dwelling in all beings, the witness, the perceiver.” If one can truly understand this and become enlightened in this way, he will see that he is a part of the Supreme Reality and realize his union with all beings. Within that enlightenment one can reach Divine Love. This love is based on the spiritual oneness and harmony between all beings, which is sublime. It is a source of spiritual bliss. It is a love based not on bodily relations or mutual attraction, but it is based on being one in spirit, beyond the temporary nature of the body. This is the love for which everyone searches, from which springs forth peace, harmony, and unity, of which all other kinds of love are mere reflections. This state of being is reached only through spirituality. Therefore, a life without spirituality is a life incomplete. All have the need to fill their souls with spirituality, the presence of God, in order to feel fullness, peace, contentment, and unity.

As the Supreme says in the ancient Vedic text of Bhagavad-gita (6.30): “To him who sees Me in everything and everything in Me, I am never lost, and he is not lost to Me.”

To begin seeing how things really are, and to recognize the Divinity in each of us, we have to start adjusting our consciousness. This takes place by being trained in spiritual knowledge and by the practice of yoga which purifies the mind. When the mind becomes purified and the false ego no longer influences our vision, we become sensible people. As the Bhagavad-gita (13.31-32) says, when a sensible man ceases to see different identities due to different material bodies, he attains the spiritual conception. Those with the vision of eternity see that the soul is transcendental, eternal, and beyond the modes of nature. Despite being within the material body, the soul is above material contact.

As the son is a part and parcel of the father, similarly, we are all individual parts of the supreme spiritual Father. In fact, the whole creation displays different energies which are expansions of the Supreme Energetic. Thus, there is diversity within the variegated material energy which expands from the Supreme Being. These expansions manifest in millions of species of life, as explained in the Vedic literature. Therefore, although we are in different material bodies, we are all expansions of the same spiritual energy. This is oneness and unity in diversity. On the spiritual platform, which is absolute, we are all the same. We are all spiritual beings, servants of the Supreme Being, undergoing life in the material creation. That is real unity. This perception is the perfection of the spiritually conscious person. He sees all living entities as reflections of the One, the Supreme Being. Thus, in a broad sense, there is one interest. Spiritually there is no clash.

We are all but small reflections of the Supreme Consciousness. When we put the greater whole above ourselves, and realize that we all contribute to the condition of this planet, then uniting with a common cause and with that Supreme Consciousness will be easy.

This planet does not allow us to be isolated. We all must work together and interface with others on some level. One lesson that this school of existence on this planet forces us to learn is that when we come together willingly to communicate, with a positive purpose, or to pray together, and to unite for the good of the whole, then harmony and peace can exist. That peace forms and manifests when we focus on our spiritual nature, which brings between us our unity in the Supreme. Making this the center of our existence will easily bring peace, unity, and harmony in this world because it brings in the spiritual vibration that emanates from the Supreme. That vibration is one of spiritual love. It is all that is eternal. All else is temporary. Therefore, focusing on and using our energy on temporary emotions such as envy, jealousy, and anger, will only keep us far away from the Supreme, and from reaching any peace or unity between us.

We have to recognize how similar we are in order to expand our heart toward others we may have previously rejected. This is how love and understanding can dissolve the boundaries that keep us stifled as a society and individuals, and keep us from entering higher dimensions of consciousness. There is no other way to grow spiritually. A lack of love for each other is a reflection of a lack of love for God.

When we think in spiritual consciousness, we do not recognize others by their differences. We see our similarities. This is easy when we think in terms of being sons and daughters of the same Supreme Father. We all belong to the One. Only in this way can there be universal love among all living entities. Only in this way can we begin to think that we are all related to each other. Once we establish our relationship with the Supreme, then we can establish our true relationship with everyone else. Our spiritual nature is eternal, and our spiritual relation with the Supreme is eternal. Therefore, our spiritual relationship with each other is also eternal. It is not subject to time and circumstances. This central point has to be established in order for there to be universal peace, brotherhood, equality, and unity in the world.

In essence, we are all consciousness in material forms. Consciousness cannot be destroyed. It is the essence of God in each of us. We are all spiritual beings, reflections of the Divine. We are not our beliefs, our cultures, or our minds and bodies. We are all divine souls on a wondrous journey through Truth. We have all manifested from God, the Supreme Truth, and we are all evolving back to God. As the Manu-samhita (12.125) relates, “Thus, he who by means of Self sees the self in all created things, after attaining equality with all, enters into Brahman [spiritual consciousness], the highest place.” That is the ultimate goal.