Insightful newsletter of Drishtikone: Issue #175 - Conflict and Victory

Photo by Sajad Nori on Unsplash

“Everything in the world is about sex except sex. Sex is about power.” ― Oscar Wilde


Conflict is when I am, therefore you Have to Be.  Peace is when I am You.

When existence lives in the dualities of itself, then it lives in conflict.  Living in conflict is violence.  Violence is not just the physical manifestation of murderous intent.  But when existence is in a fight with itself.  Like the Ocean, which is in peace with itself up until the surface, where the waves rise and collapse and create violent energy.  These waves don't need to kill or hurt someone or something, potential violence is its nature.

Violence is of intention.  The intention of existing.  The "moment" when the intention arose in the Universal Consciousness of knowing itself, the first vibration from which the rest manifest, was the beginning of the conflict.  To live and engage in dualities is to perpetuate the creational conflict.  To witness the duality without engaging is an act of Peace – non-violence.   Non-violence is living in cosmic law, and yet not be of it.

Cosmic law - the inherent property of the Universal Consciousness needs no tweaking.  It cannot be changed or altered.  It runs its course defined by the dualities.

 To acknowledge it as it is and doing what we need to do to live our lives from one moment to another without judging ourselves or the creation is to live in Peace.  The peace that comes out of flowing.  Like the soaring eagle which opens its wings and lets the wind currents take over.  Into an Effortless journey.  Weight of judgment does not lend itself to effortless soaring.  It is a journey full of effort and conflict.

When there is no God on a pedestal, no Savior to save one manifestation of itself from another, no "Sinner" looking up to a pedestal or its caretakers, when the God, the Creation, the Soul, the Seer, the Seen, and the act of Seeing are all One, then, the Peaceful Depths of the Ocean can be witnessed and experienced.  However, when there are pedestals and its caretakers, the distinctions and paths - finite as they are - to those distinctions, and a whole gamut of imagined virtues of this existence that is perpetually in inherent conflict; then the experience of Peace is an accident, if at all.

Spiritual Peace is not the peace that is often defined by a lack of stress.  That still can be a conflict of the mind.  Verbally Quiet and lonely a person maybe, but there is conflict nevertheless.  A disquiet that is deeper than verbal and noise. 

The deepest part of our soul knows the Peace instinctively, but its articulation via the limitations of mind and body tries to replicate that Peace within the confines of Dualities and a forever conflicting creation.  The mind is trying to mimic the Peace of Consciousness for itself.  It is a poor surrogate at best and an illusion at worst.

Peace, therefore, is not quietening of sound.  Just as non-violence is not picking of arms.  Both are myths of mind that have helped create useless enterprises at best!


Mugabe-inspired election thievery

The US has never seen a President with less than 270 electoral votes gained beyond any shadow of a doubt.

Yet, we have one declared by everyone as if they just don’t want to entertain the reality of skepticism around the vote scandals.

The fact is that the integrity of counting is not beyond doubt and those doubts have not been fully addressed. And, in many states lawsuits are being filed against the voting practices.

And the cheerleaders are everywhere. As if others do not even matter!

This is not a hand for reconciliation. This is a strike of humiliation.

And, when you so starkly humiliate someone, the chances are that somewhere someone has been deeply impacted and will make it his mission to seek vengeance for this.

This will not end.

We can keep pretending otherwise, but the whole manner in which this has been pushed through will destroy the American society and the Western world in many ways that we can know.

Mark my words, the situation today is ripe for retaliation by the hardcore right-wing minds. And, that strike will not be by a megalomaniacal fool like Donald Trump. We have sowed the seed in the society for a well-planned popular one to take control. It may be in the next elections or maybe after 20 years. But just like Bush rule and the whole Scooter Libby scenario had paved the way for Barack Obama, this humiliation has paved the way for someone very different.

I just hope that this world can handle that when it happens.

when Guru Gobind Singh alone pursued by the enemy - his prayer

Protection can never be of a person, for that which is sure to die can never be saved, even by the Divine. Aspiration can only be to protect the Divine from the Divine. Mata Gujri and her two grandsons had died in the custody of Wazir Khan – who was pursuing and attacking Guru Gobind Singh’s Sikhs. At that time, the Guru turned to his Guru, the Formless, Stainless and Self-reliant. Primal, Blemish-less, Endless, and birth-less. That was when he wrote this poem called - Benti Chaupaee.

That which was the manifestation as Brahm, Vishnu, and also Shiva, the Adi Yogi.

The fight from the beginning of time has been between Dharma and A-Dharma, between the Being and the Becoming. The primal conflict – that distance between What is and What should be – is the only source and manifestation of Violence in Creation. Its absence is A-himsa. To realize the moment and be able to live in it as fully as one can is living in Dharma. If that moment calls for wielding the sword, then so be it. Whether that Sword is of Vivek – the Discrimination between what is the “Me” (the Eternal Me) and what is “Mine” or the physical one that defends the Dharmic is a semantic difference.

jai asidhuj tav sarni parai

Lord of Sword, or the One Consciousness, the Primal and Timeless Purush (being) is at the same time, the goal and the sword by which that distinction of Me and Mine can be cut through!

Words are limited and expressions are of the moment in which they originate, the understanding of it, however, is at the level of the listener. Your teacher might be a Nobel Prize winner, but if you are in grade 10th, you will only get which you can make sense of what he says.

Understanding, therefore, has nothing to do with the Teacher or the Guru but the Student. Sikh, the student or learner, can only learn what he makes himself capable of, Guru’s presence or not is immaterial. That is why, perhaps, the last Guru who had taken his own Guru as the Primal Non-Being, surmised that if the student can, then the written word of Guru is enough. However, if, the seeker lacks the intellect born of humility, then even the live Guru himself can do a Sikh like Bhag Singh no favor. Guru is what the Sikh, a student, makes of him. He is no more and no less.

Two prayers:

ਦੇਹ ਸਿਵਾ ਬਰੁ ਮੋਹਿ ਇਹੈ ਸੁਭ ਕਰਮਨ ਤੇ ਕਬਹੂੰ ਨ ਟਰੋਂ ॥
(देह शिवा बर मोहे ईहे, शुभ कर्मन ते कभुं न टरूं / O Lord Shiva grant me the boon, that I may never deviate from doing a good deed)

and

ਤਾਕੌ ਕਰਿ ਪਾਹਨ ਅਨੁਮਾਨਤ ॥ ਮਹਾਂ ਮੂੜ੍ਹ ਕਛੁ ਭੇਦ ਨ ਜਾਨਤ | ਮਹਾਂਦੇਵ ਕੌ ਕਹਤ ਸਦਾ ਸ਼ਿਵ ॥ ਨਿਰੰਕਾਰ ਕਾ ਚੀਨਤ ਨਹਿ ਭਿਵ ॥੩੯੨॥
(The fool considers Him a stone, for he does not know the Profound Mystery that is God. He calls Shiva, The Eternal Lord, and does not know the secret of the Formless Lord)

The one who prays to Shiva, also calls those who reduce the Eternal Shiva to a “name” and a form with as much expanse as their own limits may allow, as fools. It is no contradiction. Shiva in the hands of the Guru transcends all limits and is the Eternal.. the Unmanifest! In the hands of a lesser mind, it remains no more than a stone. So, the seeming contradiction. Guru is, what the Sikh can be.

In the movie Avatar, as the Nav’i forest is attacked by the humans, Jake Sully bows to Eywa in the forest with the roots and branches of Eternal Intelligence and prays to the formless Goddess to save Pandora and the Nav’is. As he gets up and turns around, Neytiri informs him “Eywa never favors, for she is always in balance”.

One can Balance only that, which he has power to Balance and is its own. That which is external and outside of one can never be Balanced. So, that which inherently is not in “your favor” or “against the other”, then what do you pray to it for and why?

When the seeker is one with the prayed to and realizes that the prayer, the prayed and the reward are non-different from the seeker himself; then the words have no meaning. At least not the one they seem to suggest.

The Guru’s prayers are probably the silent and personal prayers of Neytiri (if they were shown) for her “well being” knowing fully well Eywa doesn’t favor. When the hope of bias and prejudice from the Divine is lost and understood, and still prayer comes forth, then it is truly Divine.

Sharda Ram, the man who wrote the Aarti “Om Jai Jagdish Hare”

Diwali is coming. One poem will resonate ubiquitously in every Hindu home that night. Let us know its history.

A powerful literary figure of the 19th century – Shardha Ram “Phillauri” was a Sanatani seeker. He was also a social reformer and a trend-setter in the fields of Hindi and Punjabi literature. His contribution to the evolution of modern Hindi is seminal. While on his death-bed he had said, “There are two writers of Bhasha in the whole of India. To-day only one shall remain.” His reference to the other Bhasha writer was to the celebrated Bhartendu Harishchandra. This dying declaration of Shardha Ram might have seemed an exaggerated estimation. However, with the passage of time, the truth stands established. Renowned critic Ram Chander Shukla writes “His language was forceful and his speech hypnotic. He was a true Hindi lover and an effective writer of his times.”

Only a few people are aware of the fact that Shardha Ram was the creator of the most popular prayer Om Jai Jagdish Hare, sung by almost every Hindu family the world over. Even during his lifetime, the popularity of this prayer tempted many persons to appropriate it. The word Shraddha denotes the devotion and dedication of the author at the same time, this reference makes him the creator of the prayer. The devotional feelings of the author show through each line of the prayer. The omnipresent Almighty God is everything to the poet and he cannot even think in terms of another:-

Maat pita tum mere, sharan gahun main kiski,

Tum bin aur na duja aas karun main jiski.

He firmly believed that total surrender before the Almighty bestows all kinds of bliss!

Jo dhyave fal pave dukh vinshe maanka,

Sukh sampati ghar aawe kasht mite taanka.

Satya Dharm Muktavli and Shatopadesh established Shardha Ram as a poet of eternal devotion and dedication on a par with Tulsidas and Surdas of the Bhakti Movement.

Shardha Ram was born in a Brahmin family at a small town, Phillaur (Jalandhar) in the year 1837. His father, Jai Dyalu was an astrologer by profession. When the latter learned about the birth of a son, he predicted that the boy would accomplish many things and win laurels during the short span of his life. The prediction came true.

Sikhan De Raj Di Vithia and Punjabi Batcheet are two notable works of Shardha Ram in (Gurmukhi) The first work earned him the title of “Father of modern Punjabi prose. It contains the story of the Sikh religion and politics according to the perception of the author. The book is divided into three chapters. The last chapter contains customs, usages, and folk song s of Punjab. Perhaps, for this reason, this book was prescribed as a textbook for higher education. Punjabi Batcheet depicts different customs usages and fashions prevalent in different regions of Punjab such as Malwa and Majha etc idioms, modes of expression, and variations in dialect are shown. The study of this book was made compulsory for getting into administrative services.

Though Shardha Ram was the product of religious turmoil of his age, he was far ahead of his times”. His novel Bhagyawati, written with the sole purpose of bringing an awakening amongst the womenfolk, has been called the first Hindi novel, although the claim is not uncontested. Pariksha Guru, written by Shri Niwas Dass, is a contender for the prestigious first place. Bhagyawati can, however, rightly claim many firsts in the field.

On the birth of a female child, Bhagyawati, the main character in the novel makes her husband understand that there is no difference between the male and the female child. Opposition to child-marriage and laying stress on adult education makes this novel far ahead of its times.

Satyamrit Pravaha demonstrates the profound scholarship and rational outlook of Shardha Ram and it shall be long remembered for the strong convictions and principles that it embodies.

Even a sentence uttered by a child, with a rationale behind it is more acceptable than a quote from the Vedas without a rationale says the author. Shardha Ram was a person of independent views and he desisted from withholding his own thought and interpretation of Vedas and Shastras”. He was charged with conducting propaganda against the British Government, through his forceful lectures on the Mahabharata’.

His lectures on the Shalya Parva were attended by police trainees. He was exiled from his hometown, Phillaur. Shardha Ram did not relent and the order had to be subsequently withdrawn after the persuasion by father Newton, who had a great admiration for Shardha Ram’s scholarship. Through his literary pursuits and lectures, Shardha Ram emphasized the literary development in PunjabBack.

Despite his many creations and talents, his one creation will live on forever without anyone knowing who actually wrote it.  The ubiquitous Om Jai Jagdish Hare aarti!

nota bene

Mega Diwali in Taiwan: Taiwan is set to host a mega Diwali celebration that is being sponsored by the Taiwanese government and will see the participation of representation by the government. The Diwali celebration will take place in the Taiwanese capital Taipei and is being organized by Taipei India Music and culture center and Indians in Taiwan group. Deputy Taiwan Foreign Minister Tien Chung Kwang will be present at the celebrations. (Source)

Faulty Arms from China: Countries -- from Bangladesh to Myanmar -- are concerned over faulty Chinese military equipment. Beijing gave two 1970s era Ming class Type 035G submarines to Bangladesh at $100 mn each in 2017 -- which were recommissioned as BNS Nobojatra and BNS Joyjatra. They both lying idle due to technical issues. The year 2020 saw Dhaka getting two Chinese 053H3 Frigates -- BNS Umar Farooq and BNS Abu Ubaidah -- but has been facing issues like non-functioning navigation radar and gun system. (Source)

Vaccine by 2022?: As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across the world, Dr Randeep Guleria, director of AIIMS and member of the national task force on Covid-19 management, explained the scenario in the country, the challenges that lie ahead, treatment mechanism, and when the vaccine would be available to the common public.  He also said that for normal people, getting themselves vaccinated will take more than a year. “In our country the population is large; we need time to see how the vaccine can be bought from the market like a flu vaccine and take it. That will actually be the ideal situation. So it could be the end of 2021 to the beginning of 2022.” (Source)

Opening the IT Sector: The Modi government has decided to liberalize and modernize the rules and regulations of the IT sector to improve ease of doing business for the companies. The press release of the Department of Telecom reads, “It is clarified that the registration requirement for OSPs has been done away with altogether and the BPO industry engaged in data-related work have been taken out of the ambit of OSP regulations. In addition, requirements such as deposit of bank guarantees, the requirement for static IPs, frequent reporting obligations, publication of network diagrams, penal provisions etc. have also been removed. Similarly, several other requirements, which prevented companies from adopting ‘Work from Home’ and ‘Work from Anywhere’ policies have also been removed.” The industry leaders hailed this as a major reform.

Aghoris - the mysterious but powerful way

“There is no need for a temple or any rituals. All you need is to be in the moment with yourself fully,” said Osho in one of his lectures. Great point I thought. But isn’t THAT the main issue with human beings? The point is being in the moment is not a mental exercise. It requires a shift in the entire being.

Osho was right in a broad sense. But his statement was horribly useless for any seeker. It shows you the way, but it cannot get you there.

That is why the Indian Sages realized that. That is why over the many centuries, so many ways were explored and specialized. Temples were filled with energies to bring about the change if someone could be around the space for a certain time. Some temples were built at a place, where, by the time you landed there - your entire self-absorbed ego would be broken. The chances that such a beaten up person may be open to the transformation available from that energy were high.

All that talk of Osho looked amazing. But in the grander scheme of Spiritual work, it was rather juvenile. It told you great things. But left you nowhere.

That is why the culture which could conjure up the path like that of Aghoris was so different and starkly mature. Let us listen about the path of the Aghoris from the only one I can trust on this topic.

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