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Old 4th September 2010, 20:13   #136
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Default The logic behind rules of penance

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Any idea behind why growing beard?
As some one has already pointed out ( I think Mx6) growing beard and abstaining from hair cut, eating only one time, abstaining from sex etc are all just to control our senses than anything else. It is to reduce the thought that this body is me rather than the soul within. It is to stop thinking about our outward appearance and start to cleanse our inner self.

If we delve deeper, humans or for that matter animals use their physical appearance to impress upon the opposite sex(mostly) and others. So physical beauty becomes 1st and foremost way to impress others or to be blunt this world. And it is mostly because of this we all try to look beautifull consciously or unconsciously (At least I do).

But does this bring us nearer to the god. The answer is very clear in the principles laid out for the penance (and they are almost the same for most of the "deeksha's" that exist in our country). It has to be the inner beauty that endears us to the lord. And so the rule of no hair cut, or shaving and even combing our hair etc.

So does that mean that in order to move closer to god we have to be untidy etc. Of Course not. The penance is like practice. We practice alphabets when we were young. Do we do that even now? No. Because it is imbibed in our memory. The same way we practice this till we are able to realise our inner self. The whole purpose is not to be attached to the senses. One can continue to satisfy the senses, but should not crave for that.

This is like steering regaining the control of wheels (In Tbhp language). If steering is mind or "Manah" wheels are our senses. What would happen if wheels control steering? The same would happen if senses control us. The act of penance is to regain the control.

And the irony of all this is, it is not the materialistic things that bring us happiness. Lets say a person likes ice cream a lot. He will be very happy if you offer him one. Two. Three. What after 4th or may be 5th. Would he feel the same happiness he felt when he ate the 1st cup? Definitely not. So is happiness in Ice cream or in his sense of taste. Mind you stomach never asks taste. It is tongue that asks for taste. One moment it likes Ice cream and the moment it had more than one it doesn't like the same.(The law of diminishing returns or is it utility). So where does happiness lie, in Ice cream or within us?

The day one realises this, he/she is one with god. They go into that realm where you are never tired of having more of lords name. They see the presence of lord every where. They love all but are attached to none. They yearn for more. The entire process is like a salt block taking a plunge to see the depths of ocean. What happens? It would be one with ocean. There would be no salt and ocean. Now it is one with ocean.

P.S. I recollect a small story told by Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa. Once there was a bee which was collecting nectar from flowers to turn them into honey and eat that. While doing so it stumbled upon a vessel which was half filled with the sweetest of all the nectars. The bee was sitting on the vessel but was afraid to take the plunge and drink the nectar.
A voice asked it why it doesn't jump into the vessel and drink the nectar.
The bee replied "I would get stuck in the nectar and die."
The voice replied " But this is the nectar of immortality and it would never be empty, how much ever you may drink"
But still the bee couldn't do that and left doing the routine thing.

Our mind or manah is the bee. Afraid to jump into the nectar of immortality, thinking that we would die. But how can anyone die in the nectar of immortality? And what happens to the honey that the bee collected with so much effort. Does the bee enjoy the efforts it had put. And is it grater than the nectar of immortality, which shall never cease to exist. A human being takes that. What if the bee jumped into the nectar of immortality. It would have been immortal, while enjoying the sweetest of all the nectars.

Last edited by vamsi.kona : 4th September 2010 at 20:21.
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Old 6th September 2010, 09:23   #137
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That was a wonderful explanation Vamsi; I read it on Saturday & re-read again this morning; its leaving me speechless. Who realizes all these & undergoes the penance period these days? With most of them wanting to lead a regular life & yet to show off that they're on God's side, the purity of penance is lost. Hope your write-up brings some light & clears confusions of mind like it did to me.

From next time, I would start observing penance period, but not 41 days where I would cheat upon myself after a week or so. May be 2-3 days to begin with, but will make effort to increase the number of days. But on those days, I would neither show off & would control all the 5 senses.

As I'm nearing to the end of my trip, my system crashes at home, leaving me no room to post more. I'll try & post some pics on the ending note this evening, provided I fix the desktop.

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Old 6th September 2010, 14:11   #138
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Vamsi,

Wonderful and valuable insights through your posts. Must have read the posts multiple times to memorise the content. You have summarized the values very aptly.

Aargee: Thank you for this thread and showing us the holiest places. Wonderfully narrated and with your style of writing, you have made this thread a participative thus have gathered some valuable information. This thread is worth 6 or 7 ratings for its importance and sad that I can only give 5.

Thank you once again my friend and God Bless.
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Old 6th September 2010, 15:37   #139
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Originally Posted by Indian Ranger View Post
Thank you for this thread and showing us the holiest places.
My pleasure sharing with all of you & it was people like Vamsi, Gansan & MX6 added more values to it.

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Originally Posted by Indian Ranger View Post
Wonderfully narrated and with your style of writing, you have made this thread a participative thus have gathered some valuable information.
Writing style & me? Sorry, I don't have any, you might call this blabber or straight from head rather.

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This thread is worth 6 or 7 ratings for its importance and sad that I can only give 5.
Thank you Indian Ranger for your kind words & rating 5

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Thank you once again my friend and God Bless.
Bless you too

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Old 6th September 2010, 16:41   #140
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From next time, I would start observing penance period, but not 41 days where I would cheat upon myself after a week or so. May be 2-3 days to begin with, but will make effort to increase the number of days. But on those days, I would neither show off & would control all the 5 senses.
I have a small query. When you say you would do penance for 2 or 3 days do you take the deeksha by wearing the mala or just follow the principles on those days. If it is the latter then all the best. But if is the former, then I would suggest you either do 41 days or rather not do. Because if one takes the deeksha as prescribed through a guruswamy, then it is imperative to follow the 41 days. If it is not feasible, then you can simply follow the rules on those days as if you took deeksha. Ultimately it is the observance of rules and the spiritual journey that is of utmost importance.

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Vamsi,

Wonderful and valuable insights through your posts. Must have read the posts multiple times to memorise the content. You have summarized the values very aptly.
Thank you. The last 3 to 4 years have been quite a journey for me as I have learnt things that have changed my perspective about many things and relations. (Now don't jump to conclusions that there is a sour love story etc. I actually listened to preachings of Brahmasri Changanti koteswara Rao. If any one knows telugu, listen him once and you would never stop.)

But all said and done, knowing things doesn't mean one can practice them. Its like a newbie learning to drive a car for the first time. They may know what clutch is, how to engage gear, where the break is, accelerator etc. But can they drive? They will falter first and slowly learn through their failures. Some learn quick some are slow. Some stop trying after one or two scary incidents. I am still trying to practice the things that I know

A small story to show the difference in knowing things and practicing them.

Once Sri Ramakrishna paramahamsa was going along with his disciples, who were carrying him in a palanquin. They were passing through a street in Kolkata, which was known as a hub of prostitutes. It was evening and all the prostitutes were standing outside to attract customers. The disciples were trying to move faster as they wanted to get out of the area, which they considered impure. Paramahamsa, who was till then in his own thoughts, saw the prostitutes standing there and suddenly jumped from the palanquin and started to fall at the feet of every women there with tears of joy.

The disciples were flabbergasted and with much effort got hold of him and carried him to ashram. After reaching they said that they were embarassed that their teacher should fall at the feet of prostitutes, whom they considered impure. Paramahamsa then replied " But I could only see my mother Kali in all those women"

Who but an enlightened soul can say those words and live like that. That is the difference between knowing to respect every women, apart from your wife as your mother and practicing it.

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Old 6th September 2010, 17:17   #141
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@Vamsi. Ofcourse one doesn't need a love story gone sour to get in to spiritual life. Remember, you quoted about Ramakrishna Paramahmsa. Of all great sanyasis, he was one guy who was a sanyasi who still had a wife. In Tamil we call that as Illarathil Thuravaram - Sanyasa in Samsara.
Sanyasa is easy to a degree. Sanyasa in Samsara is very difficult. Rightly you said about practicing for 41 days or not at all. Because, there's no point in doing it for 2 - 3 days and extending it. It is either done or not done.
And Paramahamsa is a great soul. He practiced that for life even though married to another great divine person - Sharada Devi.
I still recollect vividly, the 30 minutes I spent in silence in Dakshineshwar over 20 years back. Guess we can have a separate log for Paramahamsa's stories!
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Old 6th September 2010, 21:07   #142
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Guess we can have a separate log for Paramahamsa's stories!
Not only Paramahamsa, but many such souls such as Ramana Maharshi, ChandraSekhara Saraswati, ChandraSekhara Bharathi, Thyagaraja Swamy, Swami Vivekananda, the 63 Nayanar's, Alwars and what not. I am more than willing to know new things.

PS. Where would such a thread fit in our forum?
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Old 8th September 2010, 05:47   #143
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I have a small query. When you say you would do penance for 2 or 3 days do you take the deeksha by wearing the mala or just follow the principles on those days.
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Rightly you said about practicing for 41 days or not at all. Because, there's no point in doing it for 2 - 3 days and extending it. It is either done or not done.
Oh!!! Guys, relax; I cannot have an absolute control on my mind with all my senses for 41 days. Let me tell you, if someone does that for 41 days, hats of to them. My little step for 41 days begins with 2-3 days. I don't know how far I will succeed, but, sure I WILL be going in for wearing mala & follow the principles for 2-3 days. Be it right or be it wrong, I consider it right in within me. To me, its far far better than a mere show off by growing beard, walking bare foot, wearing blacks. I would go to an extent of eating food with less salt, almost no sweets (may be something with jaggery); I'm even thinking of staying away from office & switching off mobile & keeping myself away from the crowd.

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PS. Where would such a thread fit in our forum?
Why not? When we can have threads on home appliances, why not on spirituality?
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Old 8th September 2010, 07:15   #144
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Aargee, why has to story stopped?
"Keep reciting". Discussions will continue.
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Old 8th September 2010, 08:04   #145
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Default Day 6 - Aug 26 concluded

As I said before, not much pics from Guruvayoor except for these that I'm sharing here.

The entrance, East nada, that no one can miss.
My trip to Sabarimalai and other temples in Kerala-p1.jpg

Here's the incident - as we approached the parking lot, we saw this Swaraj Mazda casually turning in & only to find out he pushed the gate towards his left inside. It got jammed up bad that if he moved forward or reverse, the gate would move along. So we got struck here for about 5-10 minutes. During this time, no one made a fuss, no one shouted, no one had a heated argument.
My trip to Sabarimalai and other temples in Kerala-p2.jpg

This is Mammiyoor Shiva temple which is located about 1.2 Kms from Guruvayoor towards the West nada. We'd a quick darshan & moved home. One note here is that, there's no parking space available & one has to park the car on a lane that is adjacently opposite side to the temple behind the auto stand. Surprisingly the auto guys were helpful not only to park the car, but they also suggested where to park the car. This was not only to us, but, I also notice the same thing happening with other cars.
My trip to Sabarimalai and other temples in Kerala-p3.jpg

From here we started proceeding towards Aunt's home in Wadakkanchery via Kechery; though the road wasn't smooth, there wasn't any potholes & could keep an average speed around 40 & most places above 70.
My trip to Sabarimalai and other temples in Kerala-p4.jpg

Finally when we reached home, this was clocked on ODO for the day
My trip to Sabarimalai and other temples in Kerala-p5.jpg
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Old 8th September 2010, 09:58   #146
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Did you take your kid to anai kottai? He would have enjoyed seeing so many elephants. Its very close to Mamyoor.
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Old 8th September 2010, 10:01   #147
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aargee, if you never visited Udipi, Moogambigai & Sringeri in this trip, it is better to remove it from the thread title.
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Old 8th September 2010, 10:44   #148
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aargee, if you never visited Udipi, Moogambigai & Sringeri in this trip, it is better to remove it from the thread title.
Ok Sir I'll remove it; but I'd put the purpose for one reason, instead of visiting...
Kollur Moogambigai, I visited Panachikaadu Dakshina Moogambigai
Udipi Sri Krishna, I visited Guruvayoor Sri Krishna
Sringeri in KA, I visited Sringeri Mutt in KL

and that's the reason for saying "Udipi, Moogambigai & Sringeri in KERALA".

Pls feel free to edit & change the title appropriate sir.
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Old 8th September 2010, 11:56   #149
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Oh! You did not visit? I was thinking it would be Udupi time after GVR!
Thats why I was asking to continue the story!
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Old 8th September 2010, 14:35   #150
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Oh!!! Guys, relax; I cannot have an absolute control on my mind with all my senses for 41 days. Let me tell you, if someone does that for 41 days, hats of to them. My little step for 41 days begins with 2-3 days. I don't know how far I will succeed, but, sure I WILL be going in for wearing mala & follow the principles for 2-3 days. Be it right or be it wrong, I consider it right in within me. To me, its far far better than a mere show off by growing beard, walking bare foot, wearing blacks. I would go to an extent of eating food with less salt, almost no sweets (may be something with jaggery); I'm even thinking of staying away from office & switching off mobile & keeping myself away from the crowd.


Why not? When we can have threads on home appliances, why not on spirituality?
@aargee you got me wrong. I am not saying that you have to either do 41 days or stop doing. My only suggestion was that if one takes deeksha through a guruswamy then one has to do the 41 days penance. Or else one could practice the rules without actually taking the deeksha through mantras. Some times physical attire does bring in a feeling to us and remind us of our duty, in this case the rules of penance.

And if anyone ever says that he had full control over his senses at all the times for 41 days. then they are blatantly lying. Such persons rarely speak about their prowess. And the very reason or logic behind deeksha is to practice the control over senses. That control only happens through continuous practice. So don't worry if you cannot control your senses for more than 2 days or not.

If possible go in for 41 days. When one practices certain things regularly, either with or without interest, their mind gets habituated first. For example a person who goes to temple daily for whatever reason, inculcates a habit in his mind without knowing it. After some time his mind would prompt him to go to temple as it is now programmed for that. It would feel uneasy. Overtime this will have a profound effect over his other aspects also, because the people with whom we move, the places we visit over a long time will change the way we look at things.

Any way I respect your opinion on this. But don't shy if it is possible for you to continue for 41 days.

PS: Even I was confused as you mentioned Sringeri and then said in Kerala in your title. Now thats cleared. As per the thread my query was where that would fit, I mean in which sub-forum.

Last edited by vamsi.kona : 8th September 2010 at 14:37.
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