Soundarya Lahari Sloka

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Preface - part -2

Sree Cakram

It is essential that we must know in general, about the Sree Cakram, before proceeding to the slokas in detail. Here, you will find the definition of the Sree Chakram and the meaning of the same in short.

Bindu – trikona – vasukona – dasaarayugma –
manvasra – naagadala – samyuta – shodasaaram.
Vritta trayam ca dharanee sadana trayam ca
Sree chakra meta duditam paradevataayaah.

The description in the sloka refers to the components of the Sree Cakra.

They are

ashta angle,
2 numbers of dasa angles,
caturdasa angle,
dasa dala,
shodasa dala,
three rekhaas or gopuras,
three bhoopuraas –

These form the contents of Sree Cakra and form the abode of the Goddess Supreme, who is also called by the name - Paraa Sakti (in slokas), Brahman or Satyam, or Turiyam, or Bodha (in upanishads), Uttama Purusha (in Bhagavad Gita) and also as Tripura Sundari.

SreeCakram - Tripura – Sundari

We can guess that Tripura means three puras, just like three gunas - satwa, rajas and tamas or like trimurthees - Brahma, Vishnu, Siva or like triangle - three angles.

Antahpura – mean the interior hall of mother queen in a palace, for which access is available only for very few, just like the passport/visa to go to foreign country or like the password in computer for entry into the internet.
Pura in scriptures refers to body. We have three bodies, the gross body, the subtle body and the causal body.
Similarly here, pura represent our bodies during the three states of consciousness; and Sundari represent the pure consciousness.

We have three states of consciousness during our everyday activity of 24 hours, alternating every day. Some hours we are awake, some ours we sleep and some hours we are dreaming.

The main problem for us in life is this - we don’t know ourselves even for 24 hours or a day; We are not having any control during the dreaming and sleeping state; in sleep state we are thoroughly ignorant; hence, for almost half of every day, we don’t know ourselves; all of us know this for sure and certain and still pretend that we know everything; Utterly discarding the dream and sleep state, we pose in jagrat state alone that we are so and so, we want to improve the environment, the country, the world, the people around, without knowing ourselves, want to improve everything other than ourselves. This is due to the fact that we discard completely the two states in a day – the dream state and sleep state and consider the jagrat state only. In fact, we are thoroughly ignorant of all the three states, if we are unhappy any time; But, when we think we are happy by getting money, food, materials, power etc, we are not at all happy, because, such a happiness will be overtaken by unhappiness very quickly. This is referred to us by the simple story of the four blind men and an elephant in our childhood days; we will recall this story in the next lesson, though we know the same.

Bhagavan Sathya Sai Baba says repeatedly for our help as Aapat Baandhava, like this –
(The moment we think of the advice, we get out of fear, anger, etc).
Why fear when I am here!
Have Satsang, Seva and Saadhana and thereby get full happiness so as to serve your family members, your neighbours, your office, and the society and the country thereby.
Why be diseased when you are already at ease?

If we worry, it is as good as discarding the advice of the Great Master.

Sad Guru Mata Amritanandamayi Devi says in her talk like this –
It is not the environment around you to be changed, but your mind only;
Blind man cannot lead another blind man;
Be happy with whatever you have;
To save a person who is drowning in a river, you should know swimming.

If we worry and blame anybody for any reason whatever it may be, it is as good as discarding the advice of amma. All religious heads give the same good advice and show us this path of love only (devoid of not even a stint of hatred, jealousy, enmity, anger and so on); But still we discard it; and - That is the cause for our worry and sorrow; It is due to the wrong limited ego in us which drops us down from the position of godliness to manliness and then to animal-hood. This is due to the wrong knowledge of thinking that only jagrat state is real, and the dream state is unreal, and that the sleep state is not at all necessary to be considered. If we follow the advices of Rishis and Gurus, we will start mending our mind, turning it away from extroverted-ness to introverted-ness and know about these three states correctly and get rid of our sorrows.

The great Guruji Chinmayananda Swami had said –
The problems are not due to others in our family, or in our office, or environment or world, but it is due to lack of intellectual conviction; that is your BMI - body, mind, intellect are tuned wrongly and reversely convinced; what you have to do is - remove this negative or reverse conclusion that you are dependent and unhappy; but you are already happy and continue to be always happy;

If you are unhappy, how can you give happiness to others?
A quote in Tamil says like this “Chattiyil iruntaal taane akappaiyil varum!” that is, If something is there in the pot only, can it come out and feed you.

Swami Vivekananda while giving a discourse in foreign country, was interrupted by a young girl like this –
Swamiji, you are trying to hypnotize us!
But swamiji replied – no, I am not; you are already hypnotized; and I am trying to dephypnotize you.

Bhagavan Ramana Maharishi answered a person who asked him about the problems of life, environment and world like this in mere two statements or sentences –
Every thing depends on how you view a thing or world; if you view loka drishtyaa – you will not get aananda, but if you turn your attention jnaana drishtya – you will not find any worry and unhappiness but only aananda;

Guruji (Sri Sri Ravisanker) says – think globally and act locally;

But, we do the otherway and create problems for ourselves and the environment and then go on crying like the ten foolish disciples of the Guru, the story we already know. But even then the ever merciful God comes to the rescue, because we are his/her children.

The cause of all our sorrows and miseries is due to our lack of intellectual conviction and not due to anythingelse; Here is a chance to correct our mistakes, one of the method is to have a thorough study of Soundarya Lahari. Let us try to get dehypnotized and enjoy eternal bliss here itself and give happiness to all around us, irrespective of age, caste, creed, religion etc.

The 3 purushas in the puras

Kshara Purusha is jeeva who seem to come and go with our bodies in various births and deaths, who pretend to enjoy the happinesses and sorrows in life.
Akshara purusha is one [who seem to be] is in our heart (in every living being’s heart) and who is the perfect reflection of the all pervading consciousness, and is devoid of any sorrow or unhappiness and is ever blissful, he appears to be inside us and enliven our body, mind, intellect complex.
Purushottama or Uttama Purusha is one who is only available, and nothing else, anywhere and everywhere.

This is depicted by the experience in our deep sleep state, wherein we find only happiness devoid of sorrow. But we are not knowing that, and we say I didn’t know anything while sleeping. The same (Uttama) Purusha is available during all the three states, and he remains the same. We imagine that I am not Uttama Purusha but Kshara purusha or Akshara purusha. Ignorance is the cause of all sorrows. If we get the intellectual conviction about this correctly, our unhappiness or sorrow will vanish,
just like a thief runs away on seeing the police or
just like darkness vanishes on the sun rising or
when a lover who is worried forgets his worry fully when he meets his counterpart (lover) or
when a child who goes on crying stops crying abruptly on seeing his mother.
Similarly, when we get the Kadaikkan Paarvai (side glance of Devi) of Guru, and due His Grace, due to His touch, due his Blessings, due his advice, or even due to his proximity, or due his cosmic ray,
(we may be thoroughly unaware of this, like the great king Ambarisha in Bhagavata –
or like prahlada, the divine asura child,
or like dhruva the young innocent child who was sent to the forest by his father on the advice of the step mother
or like ajamila, the merchant who was selling rice with stones mixed with it) bywhich we may refer during the course of the lessons elsewhere) the jnaana surya rises, the darkness of ignorance vanishes instantaneously.

This is referred in Yoga Vaasishta by the great sage Vasishta to Sri Rama thus when asked by Rama about the Sad-Guru:-
Oh! Rama! Sad guru is one who by darshan, sparsan, upadesa words by karunaa, instills Iswara Sakti your mind and makes it evident for others so that you and others can get out of this worry/sorrows of Samsaara (bhava) saagara.

Everyone of us have the full freedom to tune our mind to one of the three channels or Purushas, just like you tune your radio or TV to a particular channel. Regarding the TV channels you have limitation; your parents or brother or sister or anyone in the house may need another channel when you want a particular channel and hence you are dissatisfied; but here you are the real raja or king; nobody can interrupt you by any means. But the choice, whether to take it or not is with you, just like the proverb goes –
You can only take a horse to the pond; but to make it drink the water in the pond rests with the horse only.

There are three choices available to be taken which will be discussed next.

The three choices here are

(1). I will watch the world and react and get affected by its changes, and go on taking births and deaths, and become limited(alpam) I – kshara pursuha;
such a person will never be happy whatever he may have – money, power, position, command, men, materials etc, though it may seem that he is temporarily happy.

One amonst 100 crores of people escape this pathetic condition and lift themselves, as Sankara says in a Prakarana grantha called Viveka Choodamani which means crest jewel of diamonds of viveka like this –

Sankaracharya in his viveka coodamani says like this –

Jantoonaam narajanma durlabhamatah
Pumstam tato viprataa
Tasmaat vaidika dharmamaargaparataa
Vidwatwam asmaat param
Aatma anaatma vivecanam swanubhavo
Brahmaatmano samsthitir muktir no
Sata janma kodi punyair sukritair binaa labhyate.

In Gita also you find a similar counterpart –

Manushyaanaam sahasreshu kascit yatati siddhaye
Yatataamapi siddhddhaanaam kascit maam vetti tatwatah.

So what is required for us is – let us not ask – why? why? But try to understand ourselves and act in the world happily, without getting perturbed in the mind –

as the great sage Ashtavakra refers to Janaka in Ashtavakra gita thus –

Oh! Janaka! Act thus –

Antarvikalpa soonyasca
Bahir swacchantacaarinah

Meaning – you act just like a great actor, a superstar who is marrying many times in every film, dying many times in different films but not at all affected, he is giving happiness to fans (though temporarily).

Don’t get worried, let the mind be free;
But act in world, involve in everything, but get uninvolved mentally.
This is referred as detached attachment, which will only help us to achieve real happiness.

Now let us see choice 2 -

(2). I will watch the world but will not react to it and get affected, hence enjoy the happiness of the akshara purusha; such a person will definitely become jivanmukta in course of time, very quickly.

(3). I will find who I am, that I am not limited but I am the pure consciousness ever in all the three states, and every aananda.

If the I (not the body-mind-intellect complex but pure consciousness) am not there, no world or anything;
If I am there, any world may appear or disappear.
Even if all the fourteen worlds disappear, I will shine independently with aananda.
That is the main aim or goal of the study of Upanishads and bhagavad gita;

The Stotra Soundarya Lahari also will fulfil this aim, if approached with sraddha.
If the common person I available in these three states or puras is removed, no world exist.
The world will disappear; but the common factor I , the consciousness, the goddess, or the happiness devoid of sorrow called aananda will remain, unchanging.

This I, can be taken as Tripura Sundari – the goddess supreme or pure consciousness.

This principle of anvaya yukti and vyatireka yukti [referred in Upanishad to achieve intellectual conviction and thereby liberation or bondage] is found embedded secretly and sacredly in sreecakra / Tripura Sundari.

Tripura Sundari – remaining as permanent aananda in the three puras.
Tripura may be taken as the three worlds / gods

Srishti – Brahma – creation
Stiti – Vishnu – protection
Laya – Rudra - destruction

Sundari refers to the same unchanging consciousness, absolute, bliss which remains the same in all the three cases the three sub gods are only upaadhis.


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