Colony Earth - Part IX: The Buddha & Sufism
Although Gautama Buddha [550-483 BC] was born in a royal Hindu family, he rejected Hinduism as it was practiced in his lifetime. In ‘The Nighantu and The Nirukta of Sri Yaskacarya’ which is the oldest Indian treatise on Sanskrit etymology, the 1920s translator Lakshman Sarup says that there was indeed “early anti-Vedic scepticism” which possibly influenced the Buddha and “may be responsible for his vehement denunciation not only of Vedic rites and practices, injunctions, and invocations, etc., but of Vedic lore.”
Lakshman Sarup quotes from a dialogue found in the TEVIJJA Sutta in the Digha Nikaya, which tells of two Brahmanas who are arguing and go to Gautama Buddha to settle their dispute concerning the true path. The Buddha compares the Vedic Rishis [the Brahmanas] to “a string of blind men” clinging to each other. “…the talk of the of the Brahmanas [Rishis] versed in the three Vedas [is] but blind talk…the three Vedas turn out to be ridiculous, mere words, a vain and empty thing.”
The Buddha declares that reciting Vedic invocations is as useful as asking the riverbank to move closer, so one may cross the waters. “…the Brahmanas…say thus: Indra we call upon, Soma we call upon, [etc]…that they, by reason of their invoking and praying and hoping and praising, should after death …become united with Brahma [the Oneness] — verily such a condition of things can in no wise be.”
Gautama Buddha held Vedic rituals up to ridicule and discarded them as an obstacle to final emancipation. “…Therefore is it that the threefold wisdom of the Brahmanas, wise in their three Vedas, is called a waterless desert, their threefold wisdom is called a pathless jungle, their threefold wisdom is called perdition.” As a scholar of Hinduism, the translator Lakshman Sarup naturally argues against the Buddha’s vehement assessment of the Vedas, “Nevertheless the Buddha’s denunciation of the Vedas developed a strong contempt for them in his followers” and probably “inspired other non-Vedic schools as well.”
I am quoting these words of the Buddha not to diminish the value of the Rig Veda, but to demonstrate that by Buddha’s time the real meaning of the verses was already lost — and lost to rites and rituals, which perhaps served the priests more than the faithful. Krishna says something very similar in the Bhagavad Gita, Chapter II.46:
“Of no more use than a pool when the entire land is flooded are the Vedas to the self-realized person.” [Translation by KK Nair/Krishna Chaitanya]
In II.45, Krishna states that the Vedic rites are useful only in the domain of the three gunas and urges Arjuna to liberate himself from the confinement of the plane of the GUNAS, the three modalities of Nature, meaning Prakriti and her Matrix that manifests the temporal illusory holographic universe. In fact I often feel that Krishna is also railing against the Brahman priests in the Bhagavad Gita, just as the Buddha did many centuries later.
In The Bhagavad Gita Chapter II.52, Krishna tells Arjuna that he will become 'disgusted' [nirvedam] with the Vedas once his intelligence [buddhis] has crossed over delusion, which is described as a thicket of confusion. J.A.B. van Buitenen translates the verse: “Then you will become disenchanted with what is supposed to be revealed – and the revealed itself.” In other words, you will not need or want to continue to read what others have written in books, because the God-within you will emerge as an ever-expanding fountain of wisdom-knowledge and reveal everything to you.
Swami Krishnananda says that at some point more reading and more books will only get in the way. Swami Lakshmanjoo rather humorously said to his disciples in Kashmir that when they really understood what he was saying, they would not want to listen to him anymore!
As I have previously stated, it is my conclusion that radiation was dispersed over planet Earth by the war that brought on the Kali Yuga. This radiation event altered human DNA and reduced our consciousness, intelligence and perception down to such a level that we could no longer comprehend the encoded meanings in the Sanskrit words of the Rig Veda, words that I perceive as being ‘spherical’ layers containing multi-levels of meaning. We just could not ‘grok’ and embrace non-linear thinking — and thus we fell deeper and deeper into material density, confusion and delusion.
No wonder the Buddha “ridiculed and discarded” Vedic rituals. Perhaps even the teachings of Gautama Buddha have been subject to confusion as our descent through the Kali Yuga progressed. It is my understanding that nothing the Buddha said was written down until several hundred years after his death. The possibility for some misinterpretation on the part of well-meaning and devoted disciples is valid. We all have our own filters.
Krishna understood that each of us comes to God in our own way. In the Bhagavad Gita Chapter VII.21, he says that no matter in whatever form the Oneness is approached, revered and worshipped — if that form is the expression of sincere belief, then we will receive immovable faith [shraddha]. And it is this adamantine faith that carries us Home, over the delusion thicket and beyond linear reason.
Bhagavad Gita XVII.3:
"Faith is in accordance with the Truth, [sattva] the essential nature, of each, Arjuna. Man is made of faith. Whatever faith he has, this he is." [Translation by Winthrop Sargeant.]
Cooked by Time!
As we humans continued to descend into this Cycle of Time, the Kali Yuga, our understanding of the Oneness and our ways of worshipping our own God-within went – as the old saying goes – six-ways from Sunday! Our consciousness became 'cooked' by Time.
The bold and controversial scholar, Malati J. Shendge has described intelligently and accurately the birth of any ritual, yours and mine: “When the events became symbolic and were ascribed magical powers to attain certain aims, the process of mythopoeisation was complete. History was forgotten and dead ritual became the end in itself.”
For the duration of this Kali Yuga, since 3102 BCE, and very probably throughout the previous cycle of time, The Dvapara Yuga, there has been no awareness that there are over 300+ billion galaxies in this universe. With the exception of gifted Seers who 'saw' in visions a myriad of other worlds and described them as hierarchies in primordial metaphysics, we simply were not aware of the possibility of such an immense expanse of Life. Millions of other galaxies could not have been included in our sciences and religions, even as theories, when we had no idea that the universe is so vast, larger than any of us had previously thought or ever conceived of in written history.
Isn't it time to expand our vision of God's creation?
Stuck in 21st century Kali Yuga density, most of us have simply forgotten that we volunteered. We came to Earth freely to express our God nature in Time and Space with the ideal of creating amazing gems of data-collecting vehicles, a.k.a. the DNA of human bodies that may find its way into other galactic realms. Somewhat bizarrely we are glued to the tube, indulging in compulsive consumption that never fulfils, and vampirized by demonic frequencies we ourselves created. In a miasma of amnesia our consciousness is tossed from one useless amusement to another. Even the air we breathe and the food we eat further diminishes and degrades our intelligence.
Like the spider who spins its own web, we live in a sort of self-created gauntlet. However this crazed, boring, and increasingly limited entrapment of ours is not a punishment, but rather a test of our strength and resilience. A better comparison is the legendary Labyrinth. We are amazing supercomputers who have intentionally lost the user’s manual!
The Sufi Hazrat Inayat Khan [1882-1927] has much to teach us. Remember that Doris Lessing became a Sufi before she wrote the very interesting Canopus in Argos series I wrote about at length in previous sections. In his book ‘The Heart of Sufism, Essential Writings of Hazrat Inayat Khan,’ the chapter on Sufi Metaphysics is highly illuminating. The question is posed: What is the nature of this manifestation? And his answer is, “It is an interesting dream.”
Hazrat Inayat Khan teaches us that our human bodies are indeed very remarkable. He says that our body is “an offering from the whole universe.” Our body is an offering to the soul not only by our parents, but also by the ancestors, the nation and race and is "the outcome of something that the whole world has produced for ages: a clay that has been kneaded” over and over by Time.
Hazrat Inayat Khan answers the question, “Why do souls come on earth” with one word satisfaction, for the satisfaction of God. “Because God is the Only Being, and the nature of being is to become conscious of being...in man this consciousness of being reaches its culmination. …through man God experiences life at its highest perfection.” Everything we do or have ever done, we do for God because that Oneness is who we are and have always been. There is no other!
In Sanskrit this is called the Divine Lila, or God’s Play. I often think that it is more like a ‘play’ in the sense of a scripted drama — however no one can deny God’s playfulness. There is evidence everywhere of a childlike love of endless play, along with an intoxicating and often bewildering sense of humour that confronts us when we occasionally get wise. The Sanskrit texts say that a human body is very difficult to get and the opportunity to reunite our consciousness with the Oneness should be cherished and carefully nurtured. This re-Union is the reason we came here. The wonderful Kashmir saint and sage, Swami Lakshmanjoo says, "This whole universe has come into existence just to carry you to God consciousness!”
In the late 1990s I briefly sat in on a lecture by a famous 'channel' author. I sat in the back row because I knew I wouldn't be staying long. The lady began her talk with, "I always knew I was special!" I suppressed a smile - and said to myself, "Oh yes, lady, you and seven billion others here on planet earth are indeed very special."
There is only the One, one soul. Here we all are in this temporal illusory holographic universe, all perceiving ourselves isolated, situated within different locations moving forward, moving back — always, the Oneness playing.
"You are loved and cherished. You have nothing to fear. There is nothing you can do wrong."
- quoted from 'Proof of Heaven, A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife,' by Eben Alexander, MD; Simon & Schuster, NYC, 2012.
The Nighantu and The Nirukta of Sri Yaskcarya, The Oldest Indian Treatise on Etymology, Philology and Semantics, Lakshman Sarup; published by Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi, 1920, 2009.
The Heart of Sufism, Essential Writings of Hazrat Inayat Khan; Shambala Publications, Inc. Boston, Mass, 1999.
The Civilized Demons: The Harappans in Rig Veda, Malati J. Shendge; Abhinav Publications, New Delhi, 1977.
The Bhagavadgita in the Mahabharata, A Bilingual Edition, Translated & Edited by J.A.B. van Buitenen; The University of Chicago Press, 1981.
The Bhagavad Gita, Translated by Winthrop Sargeant; State University of New York Press, 1994.
The Gita for the Modern Man, Krishna Chaitanya/KK Nair, Clarion Books, Delhi. Out-of -print, ISBN 8185120277
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