9, ఫిబ్రవరి 2011, బుధవారం

ANAGHA DEVI -By Sri Kuppa V.Krishna Murthy


Is God male or female? This question will pop up in one's mind at one time or the other.

Such a question is natural because, all the differentiation and classification are man made except the differentiation of gender, for which alone nature is responsible. The differentiation based on gender is not unique to mankind, but is seen in all living beings. Because God is responsible for this, it is possible that even the Almighty falls inside the purview of this classification. Thus, the above question seems quite natural.

But, we will face a contradiction if we think the Almighty to be either male or female. If the Almighty was to be male or female just like us humans, then it follows that the Almighty too should have parents. If the Almighty was to have a father, then who created the father? This question will remain unanswered. Thus, it is not possible for the Almighty to be a male or a female.

Many religions use masculine gender while referring to God. The Vedas, the oldest literature known to humankind has used both the genders while referring to the Almighty. At some places, they have even used the neuter gender. By this, our question becomes even more complicated.

Therefore, it becomes inevitable for us to seek other means to find out the answer. If we can first understand who the Almighty is, then we can try to know if the Almighty is male or female. Let is try this path.

To understand completely about a substance, we need to know, in addition to its external form, its composition also. To find out the  composition, we have to disintegrate the substance in to small particles and then analyse it. Because we believe that the whole creation came from the Almighty, it follows that if we analyse the creation in detail, we will come to know about its basis, namely the Almighty.

The creation is so vast that we can not analyse in detail each and every object. But there is a way out.

There may be innumerable objects in this creation. But every object is a combination of one or more elements. Till date, a hundred and odd elements are known to us. There may be many more. Be that as it may. If we analyse further, we will come to know that atoms of every element are made up of sub atomic particles such as electrons, protons, neutrons etc. . If we analyse even further, we will observe that remains in the end is only energy, which, unlike a solid object, does not have form
After Albert Einstein, the greatest scientist of our era, gave us the equation E=mc2, it was established that the omnipresent energy, on account of some unknown reason, will transform itself in to different kinds of atoms.

What then is energy? Is it Light? Sound? Heat? Electrical energy? All these are different forms of energy, but none of them can be called as the fundamental form of energy. It means that there is a kind of fundamental energy, which we can not see, but the manifestations of which can be seen in the form of light, sound et cetera. The same energy takes the form of protons, electrons and other particles to form an element. Thus, however vast the universe may be, we can say that all the objects have come from the same fundamental energy. This is the truth that the modern science has established.

The same truth has been narrated in our ancient scriptures. They have referred to this fundamental energy as Bhagavanta. The fundamental cause for all the objects in this creation is the same energy - say our scriptures. This is exactly what the modern science says!

This concept has been expressed in an episode in Chandi Saptashati, a famous treatise of ancient India. The situation is that of a demon wanting to fight against Goddess Saraswati, who is surrounded by different goddesses. The demon chides her saying, 'what is so great about fighting with so many energies helping you?' The goddess smiles and says 'You are not capable of seeing the reality. So you are seeing so many energies. The fact is that only I am here.' - so saying, the Goddess drew all the energies represented by different goddesses in to herself, stood alone and killed the demon.

Does not this story make it amply clear to us that though the energy manifests differently, it is only one in its fundamental form? Is this not what today's science has established?

In the above  issue, we set out with the question - Is God male or female? And concluded that the same fundamental energy manifests in different forms and that it was in perfect agreement with the modern science. Now let us proceed with the rest of the essay...

The basis for the whole creation is that energy. That itself is called as Bhagavanta. It now becomes irrelevant to know the gender of that energy because it is meaningless to attribute gender to energy!

If the fundamental energy does not have differentiation such as masculine or feminine or neuter, how then can the creation - which is its product have beings with such a classification? A good question indeed. The fundamental energy has no form. When the fundamental energy has no form, how then did the atoms (which came from it) gain form? (This is an important question in Vedanta and is beyond the scope of this article). We do not know how it happened. But we know that it has happened. Similarly, from the fundamental energy which was asexual came the creation which consists of heterosexual beings.

The scheme by which the differentiation of gender entered creation is called as 'Eshwara Sankalpa' in the shastras. It means that it did not take place without the knowledge of the Almighty. It was on account of conscious effort by Eshwara. It means that the factors responsible for the differentiation, namely the energy hidden in the X and Y chromosomes are inherent in that energy. Therefore, when that energy wants to take a form, it can take the form of Anda(ovum) or Jeevakana(sperm). Therefore the Almighty manifested sometimes in masculine form and sometimes in feminine form. Irrespective of the manifestation, the original form of the Almighty (i.e., the fundamental energy) is beyond the differentiation of gender. Therefore the Vedas have referred to the Almighty in neuter gender in addition to masculine and feminine genders.

The same concept is echoed in an episode in the Dattatreya Purana.

When Lord Dattatreya, the combined incarnation of the Trinity was a child of five years, many old sages spotted his greatness and started insisting him to show them the path of Yoga. The child Datta wanted to test them. He disappeared in to a pond and remained there for one hundred years. Some of the sages waited for Him on the banks of the pond while the infant Datta was in a state of complete Samadhi for hundred years. Even after coming out of the pond he continued to test the sages.

Dattatreya, who was 105 years old then, brought out His Yogic energy through His Brahma Randhra (an astral orifice found in the centre of the skull, through which Yogis can leave the body), and gave it the form of a woman. Because the energy came out from Him, He was its natural owner. He declared her to be His consort. In order to test the sages, she drank wine and started dancing. She was born as a youthful woman. Seeing her drink wine, some of the sages called her 'Madhumati'. Others called her as 'Nadee' looking at her dance which resembled the dancing movements of a flooded river. Still others realised that she was none other than the Yogic Energy of Lord Dattatreya and prayed to Him. Some others went away.

Then Lord Dattatreya came out of Samadhi. She now appeared as an ascetic. Lord Dattatreya named her as Anagha.

Anagha means sin, sorrow. Those who called her as Madhumati and Nadee  had identified her as one who possessed sin. But in reality she was sinless. Therefore Dattatreya had named her as Anagha(Sinless, Pure). Those who had recognised her to be the energy of Dattatreya, obtained the true vision of the Lord and could transcend all sorrows. In other words, because of her their sorrows (Agha) disappeared. This was another reason why Dattatreya named her as Anagha (one who removes sorrows)

Etymologically, the word Agha means that which comes to the experience of the doer (kartaaram anghaati iti agham. Aghi gatow). He who thinks that he is the doer, will experience pain and pleasure. According to vedantic view, even the worldly pleasure is in fact pain. Thus, one who thinks oneself to be the doer is always suffering. That energy which removes the feeling of doership is Anagha.

According to another etymology, Agha means that which causes sufferings to remain for ever. (Na jahaati duhkham it agham. O haak tyaage) Sorrow is caused by poverty, disease, fear of enemies, greed , ignorance etc.. That which removes sorrow by bestowing prosperity, health, affection, contentment, wisdom etc., is Anagha.

Because all these in mind, Lord Dattatreya called her as Anagha. Those sages who could comprehend this could see her as the manifestation of energy and could attain positive benefits. The demons who could not comprehend the reality only saw her as a dancer and therefore were annihilated. You may have read about this in detail in 'Sri Datta Darshana' written by our Gurudeva Sri Ganapati Sachchidananda Swamiji.

This particular episode makes it clear to us that those who thought the Almighty to be merely a female caused their own destruction. Those who consider the Almighty to be male only, als, accounted for their own doom.(The stories of such demons can be found in many puranas) Those who could realise that the Almighty was above such differentiation and was of the form of fundamental energy could transcend affinity and aversion. They alone could experience unalloyed bliss.

We can appreciate this concept in the incarnation Anagha more than any other incarnation. Therefore Sadguru Sri Ganapati Sachchidananda Swamiji is popularising the worship of Dattatreya accompanied byAnagha throughout the world.

Dattatreya is popularly known as a Yati(Ascetic) and an Avadhoota(one who has shaken off himself from worldly feeling and obligation). How then can he have a consort? - is one of the frequently asked questions. This question will not arise in the minds of those who have read the Datta Purana. Only those who consider Anagha to be a separate entity will raise the question "how can Dattatreya have a spouce?" Only when we realise that Anagha is the manifestation of His own energy, we will understand that His ascetic nature will not be disturbed when Anagha is seated next to Him.By worshipping only Dattatreya, absolute knowledge of the self will set in. On the other hand, by worshipping Dattatreya along with Anagha, even the worldly difficulties will be removed and eventually Atma Jnana will set in. In Kaliyuga, human beings can achieve wisdom
only in an unhurried pace. Therefore Lord Dattatreya himself preached the method of worshipping Anagha.

The story of the thousand-armed Kartaveeryarjuna in Datta Darshana is highly symbolic. He was one of the favourite disciples of Lord Dattatreya. Dattatreya Himself taught him the method of performing Anaghashtami pooja. Kartaveerya got his boons on the eighth day of the dark half of the month of Margashira. Lord Dattatreya has himself marked this day to be auspicious for conducting the Anaghashtami Pooja. He has further ordained that this pooja be performed every month on the eighth day of the dark fortnight. Bhagavan Vyasa has narrated the method of worship in the Puranas. But on account of the vicissitudes of time, it slowly became less and less practised so much so that questions like "What? A woman sitting by the side of Datta?" are being asked.

Sri Ganapati Sachchidananda Swamiji, who is verily Dattatreya in disguise has been spreading the multifaceted aspects of Dattatreya throughout the world. In fact no other person has carried out such an extensive propagation of Dattatreya and His teachings. Sri Swamiji is also exposing the concept of worshipping Anagha Devi along with Dattatreya and to fecilitate it, has established several temples in which both the deities have been consecrated. It is as though the philosophies of yore are being re-taught by Lord Dattatreya Himself. It is therefore highly beneficial for the seekers to adopt this pathin their spiritual pursuit.


3 వ్యాఖ్యలు:

  1. తెలుగులో అయితే మాబోటి పల్లెటూరోళ్ళకు కూడా అర్థమయ్యేది కదా!

    ప్రత్యుత్తరంతొలగించు
  2. తప్పకు౦డా అనువదిస్తాను...ఇ౦కోసారి ...:)

    ప్రత్యుత్తరంతొలగించు
  3. కసబ్ మాత్రమే శిక్షార్హుడా ? అద్వానీ శిక్షార్హుడు కాదా ?
    చదివి మీ అభిప్రాయం చెప్పండి.
    http://ramyamgakutirana.blogspot.com/2011/03/blog-post_03.html

    ప్రత్యుత్తరంతొలగించు