Narada Bhakti Sutras

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Chapter 4 Sutra 13, 14


Prostrations to all.

Sutra 13 –
Stree dhana naastika charitram na sravaneeyam

Word Meaning
Na sravaneeyam – Don’t hear
Stree dhana naastika charitram – stories (gossips) about women, wealth and non-believers of Ishwara or Brahman.

Sutra Meaning
Don’t hear or spend time on stories about women, wealth and non-believers of Brahman.

Narada in the previous sutra mentioned that a person doesn’t need to renounce everything but he just needs to do sadhana as well as renounces phalam or fruit of actions. Now Narada is entering into the sadhana to be done in order to be established in paraa bhakthi. From this sutra till the 16th sutra (last sutra) of this chapter, Narada explains about what to do and what not to do as part of sadhana towards being established in paraa bhakthi.

Even like in the first chapter and third chapter, Narada first mentions the “not-to-dos” or prathikoolas that to be renounced in this and the next sutra.

Though Sankara and tradition mentions the two-fold obstacles of kaamini and kanchanam (women and wealth), it was Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa who publicized and made the normal folks aware of this.

Sankara beautifully mentions this in the first few slokas of Bhaja Govindam thus:

Moodajaheehi dhanaagama trishnaa
Kuru sadbuddhim manasi vitrishnaam
Yat labhase nija karma upaattam
Vittam tena vinodhaya chittam

Renounce the thirst for wealth in your mind; be dispassionate in the mind and fix the mind unto the reality; whatever wealth you get by regular daily activities, be content with the same.

Naaristhanabhara naabhivesham
Dristvaa maa gaa mohaavesham
Etat maamsa vasaadivikaaram
Manasi vichinthayam vaaram vaaram

Don’t get deluded into the full bosom, navel and private part of the women; repeat in your mind always that these are only made of fat, flesh etc.

Narada following tradition thus says in this sutra that we should never get into contemplation of women, wealth or dis-believers of Ishwara. The more a person contemplates on women and wealth, the more his mind will be distracted. When the mind is distracted, it will not be able to apprehend the underlying reality of Lord or Brahman. Therefore vision of the unreality and negligence to apprehend the reality will lead such a person into more and more sorrow (thereby taking births again and again in order to get deluded in the ocean of samsaara). Narada adds naastika or disbelievers as well to the list. Any person who doesn’t believes in the underlying reality of Consciousness behind the illusory names and forms of the Lord will never be able to get out of sorrow. The very basis of bhakthi as well as jnaana is faith in the ultimate reality which is so evident yet beyond apprehension (anoor aneeyaan mahato maheeyaan – that which is subtler than the subtlest and larger than the largest).

Any person who doesn’t believe in the reality of Brahman cannot progress in the spiritual path as there is no goal to be empirically realized or achieved by such a person. Therefore we should always try to avoid hearing or discussing with disbelievers of the ultimate reality of Ishwara or Brahman.

We will continue with the next sutra in the next day.

Sutra 14 –
Abhimaana dambaadikam tyaajyam

Word Meaning
Tyaajyam – Renounce
Abhimaana dambaadikam – qualities like ego, pride etc.

Sutra Meaning
Renounce qualities like Ego, pride etc.

We saw in the previous sutra Narada proclaiming that we shouldn’t listen to stories or gossips about women, wealth or naastikas who don’t believe in Brahman or God. In this Sutra Narada mentions another “not-to-do” in order to attain paraa bhakthi. We always have to renounce qualities of the mind which not only distract the mind but lead us from the reality of Lord to the unreality of world.

Let us analyze just one quality of the mind to prove this. Abhimaana is sense of Ego which is nothing but getting attached and associated with things and people around us. Ego starts with association of the Self or “I” with the body-mind-intellect and then extending itself to people and things around us. It is Ego sense that makes us feel some people as our friends and others as our enemies. It is Ego that makes us feel some things are happiness providers as we like them and others are sorrow providers as we hate them. Due to this dual notion arising out of considering duality as real and getting association with the duality, we will end up in sorrows and sufferings when something good or bad happens to people and things around us. Not only that Ego leads us to sorrow, it veils the reality that Lord alone exists here. Instead of focusing on the non-dual Lord we will be focusing on the dual world. Instead of concentrating on the real Lord we will be focusing on the illusory names and forms. Instead of spending time in devotion to the reality of Lord we will be focusing on attachment and aversion towards worldly entities. This in turn will thereby lead us away from the Lord and lead us to sorrows-sufferings in the world.

Such a person who is lead away from the Lord and getting attached to things will be taking birth again and again in the world in order to get rid of all attachments and realize his own nature of Lord. Until liberation from worldly bondages and realization of one’s own nature of Lord a person has to be born again and again. A person with Ego will not be able to have devotion towards the Lord which is the way out of the bondages of the world (going through birth and death again and again). Therefore Sankara beautifully says in Bhaja Govindam,

Punarapi jananam punarapi maranam
Punarapi janani jatare shayanam
Iha samsaare bahudustaare
Kripaya pare pahi murare

Again birth and again death; again in the wombs of a mother; this ocean of samsaara (consisting of births and deaths) is tough indeed to cross over. But with devotion and surrender to the Lord, a person easily crosses over it.

Thus a person without abhimaanam alone can realize his own nature of Lord by overcoming samsaara. Thus we have to renounce qualities of the mind like ego, pride etc.

The Lord proclaims thus in Purusha uttama yoga:

Niramaana mohaah jithasanga doshaah
Adhyaatma nityaa vinivritta kaamah
Dvandvairvimukthaah sukhadukha samjnaaih
Gacchanthi amoodaah padam avyayam tat

A person devoid of ignorance, without sense of ego and delusion, devoid of the faults of getting attachment to things, being focused in the spiritual path, devoid of all desires and devoid of the dual notions like sukha-dukha etc. will attain the immutable state (of blissful Lord).

The above sloka of Gita propounds as to what all we have to renounce in order to progress in the spiritual path towards realization of the ultimate reality of Lord.

We will continue with the next sutra in the next day.

Prostrations to all.

Let a moment not pass by without remembering God


Post a Comment

<< Home