SECOND BLUFF – RELIGION
ALL THE BLUFF –CALL THE BLUFF
GLIMPSE OF THE KEY THOUGHT
God existed long before the concept of religion came into existence. Still the entire humanity has been hoodwinked to accept those gods which have been created by various religions. None of these gods have any thing in common. They are all superior to each other in the eyes of their followers. They are all saviours and benefactors of their people only. One should be scared of one’s God only as the others’ Gods can’t do anything. So the other God can be abused, sullied and destroyed. Just extend this logic a bit and all these man-oriented Gods created by various man-originated religions meet the same fate. The knowledge of such Gods cannot be worth pursuing as they are all partial, fear generating and destructible. It has got to be bluff only. This is what the human history of religions is all about. Many have come and many have gone and many may still come because we tend to resolve the ills of one bluff by another bluff. Can’t God exist independent of these religions? Yes, it can and it does and it has been depicted that way only in the earliest books of knowledge i.e. VEDAS from the Indian continent. The GOD as explained in VEDAS is the subject matter of this presentation. Religion in Vedas is a thought oriented concept in these books and has got entirely different meaning as there is no imposition of any name of a person or no intention of mandating any ‘religion’. There is no such name or intention to propagate any religion as VEDIC RELIGION in these books of knowledge. Vedas are not books of any religion. These are just compendium of knowledge which deals with ‘what to know’, ‘how to know’ and ‘how to apply’. The very concept of religion as understood today by various human civilizations is an afterthought and an outright bluff. For knowing how, read on and be fully equipped to call this BLUFF of religion.
WHY OF THIS BLUFF
Like spiritualism this human activity is also a roaring business all over the world. The accounted and unaccounted assets of the religious institutions may run into mind boggling astronomical figures which are immune to either inflation or recession. There are states which pride themselves in having religion as their official recognition of existence. The Papal State of Vatican City though the smallest in size yet is treated the First in Order of Precedence by the international community of nations. It is an obsession with a sizeable human population. In spite of such a tremendously large following, the twentieth century witnessed the folly of Communism in calling religion a bluff and failing completely even after banishing it ruthlessly from the society and state infra-structures. Are these two deterrents i.e. the voluminous statistics in favour and failure of a powerful state in calling it a bluff; criteria good enough to not to call it a bluff? On the contrary, there is a reason good enough in tremendous numbers to call it ignorance employing the tools of bluff to spread itself. The reason is not far enough to locate in communism’s failure. We go back to VEDAS and PATANJALI’S YOG SUTRAS The humanity as a whole is passing through a ‘bluffing stage’ in its process of evolution and we tend to resolve our one bluff with another bluff. Thus we meet a failure and employ another bluff to counter it. Communism was again a bluff only perpetrated by the state to counter the bluff of religion; which too was instituted by the state and clergy only at some point of time in history. To find out how religion is being perpetrated as bluff; we must first know what religion is in the eyes of a common man.
RELIGION AND COMMON MAN
All human actions are guided by some or the other aspect of religion. For a common man these aspects are:
· GOD (ईश्वर)
· SOUL (आत्मा)
· RITUALS ( कर्मकांड)
· ETHICS (धार्मिक नैतिकता)
The tools of FAITH / BELIEF (आस्था) have been employed successfully by all the religions of the world to create followers of the above four aspects of religion. There is an imaginary race to get the label of being more faithful, better believer; better god fearing and thus higher evolved than the people around and surprisingly there is no judge of this race. It has been presumed by each participant that he is being judged. The only condition and the easiest one for which no effort is required, to take part in this race is to forget about reason because faith/belief is beyond reason or a higher stage above all reason. (मानो तो शंकर नहीं तो कंकर). So we have been indoctrinated to believe. The irony is that for such a conclusive and definitive statement all the proponents, all the participants must have a strong reason which they prefer not to know and therefore, cannot articulate. This behavior is easily explainable. Since there is no reason there cannot be any articulation and it is explained as dumb man’s taste of sweet (गूंगे का गुड़). So the only reason is that we have been conditioned to follow quietly because if speech is silver silence is golden. What a misplacement of reason! Yes, FAITH (आस्था) is a misplacement of reason. If there is any faith it has got to be conviction only and conviction comes from knowledge (read GOD, ईश्वर) which can be attained by hard work (read TAP तपस्या) alone. There is no short cut to it. Faith is a short cut meaning blind following only, designed with a view to swelling the numbers of followers. By falling victim to the clutches of faith we deny ourselves the very existence as human beings. The specific endowment of reasoning alone distinguishes us from the animals. Rather the animal world still maintains its uniqueness and distinction by its endowed expertise as is evident in innumerable species. Only the human beings have preferred to discard their endowed expertise i.e. reason; this unique gift of God. Or we en masse have not yet reached the stage of employing reason and prefer to bluff ourselves by advancing it as reason as we are still passing through the ‘bluffing stage’ of evolution. I think latter explains better our present state of behavior. That is what the authors of Vedas had found out conclusively about human behavior in their search of SELF. We are so enthralled by the captivating charms and imagery of this illusory ‘Bluff’ which some of us call MAYA (माया) that we are convinced of it being the higher form of reason or above mundane reason. I am of the firm opinion that any individual anywhere can get out of this bluffing stage the moment he decides to do so. I shall be discussing the methodology of why of this stage and how to get out of it in my next posting i.e. THIRD BLUFF- YOGA as explained by PATANJALI. Presently suffice to say that different religions, because of this bluff, advance arbitrary and contradictory versions of all the above mentioned four aspects of religion each claiming its version only to be the correct, authentic and worth emulating. Here enters the element of bluff. Had religion been any knowledge it wouldn’t have required any authenticity. It would have just existed like an apple falling on the ground irrespective of Newton noticing it or not.
RELIGION AND GOD:
It might be politically felicitous to say that there is one God but that one God is not the same. The methods of worshipping are so varied and diametrically opposite that entirely different Gods happen to come into existence. Then it becomes sacrilegious and blasphemous to worship a particular God with a method other than the prescribed one in that religion. A personalized God is bound to differ from person to person, sect to sect and religion to religion. ALLAH, GOD and ISHWAR are, therefore, always at loggerheads because they are three distinct entities. They are three distinct entities because ARABIC MAZHAB, ENGLISH RELIGION and SANSKRIT DHARM evolved differently in varied environments as the needs of bluff dictated. These words are not synonyms; they don’t convey the same sense. These are just translations of convenience.
RELIGION AND SOUL:
The souls like Gods are poles apart in all the religions. Extremely divergent concepts of soul are making the rounds on this globe. For one it is passing through eighty four lakhs births in as many species while for the other it is just waiting in the cemeteries for the Day of Judgment. Some make them present in all animate and inanimate things while for some these are present in living beings only with their sex permanently allotted to them. For others the sexual identity keeps on changing from birth in one species to birth in another species. For some it is a parallel world populated by all the ghosts and the spirits who are virtuous and evil and the opponents dismiss it as trash and figment of imagination. For them these apparitions are nothing but hallucinations or some other disorders of mind. The bluff of this concept of SOUL has already been discussed in my previous posting under FIRST BLUFF – SPIRITUALISM.
RELIGION AND RITUALS:
There are so many rites and rituals associated with all the religions that element of identification and exclusiveness in matters of dress, languages etc have become a kind of crazy obsession with many. Most of the time people follow these rites and rituals in the name of tradition without actually ever knowing or understanding even the meanings of the words of the languages e.g. Sanskrit, Latin or Arabic used for such performance / preference. It gives them the satisfaction of being religious not so much in their own eyes but presuming that they are getting a label from others for being so. New rituals are being added every day by anyone and there are instant followers lest they are ostracized as irreligious or unorthodox. New gods and goddesses take birth everyday and new rituals are manufactured to worship them.
RELIGION AND ETHICS:
Who is bluffing whom? First we bluff ourselves individually. Then we start bluffing as a group to influence other non conforming groups and justify it as a matter of right ETHICS to indulge in crusades and ‘jihad’ wherein extreme violence and bloodshed are also used as weapons to propagate one’s view point The ethical standards prescribed by various religions are so much at variance that it is well nigh impossible to reconcile. One man’s food is other man’s poison. New rules and standards of ethics and morality are being coined and introduced everyday by anyone and anywhere. Whatever was ethical yesterday is being decried as highly reprehensible and barbarous today or vice versa
INDIAN PERSPECTIVE AND VEDIC CONCEPT OF DHARM
IN India the malaise has become so deep rooted that any individual anywhere, howsoever high or low, believer or non-believer has to confront daily any or more of the above four aspects of religion. The result is bewilderment and a kind of helplessness leading to drowsy activities of a chain of rituals bereft of any logic. Nobody asks the reason for this eerie and opiate behavior for fear of being dubbed as irreligious or unnecessary trouble creator. A logical and scientific approach is propagated as inferior knowledge by religious pedagogues and pedants alike. All the organs and agencies of state consider it a holy cow and a matter of faith (आस्था) as if all of them are in league and part of some conspiracy. This happens in a country which can pride itself of the birthplace of the earliest scientific approach towards any curiosity of human mind as discussed in the four books of VEDAS. By the passage of time this fact about the content of these books of knowledge has been so twisted, corrupted and misconstrued, all in the name and with authority of Vedas, to the limits of indoctrination by the agencies of the family and society at large that we have been fooled to rest on some imaginary past laurels and indulge in self praise of being ‘the teacher of the world’ (विश्व गुरु). Yes, all those above mentioned four aspects of common man’s concept of religion as understood by the common man or as he has been made to comprehend are non-existent in Vedas. These aspects have been packed as Vedic knowledge in an awe inspiring capsule circulated as RELIGION. How? Read on.
GOD, SOUL, RITUALS AND ETHICS IN VEDAS
VEDAS are just the books of knowledge as the literal translation suggests and these. Books deal with:-
· WHAT TO KNOW
· HOW TO KNOW
· HOW TO APPLY
The four aspects of common man’s concept of religion i.e. God ,Soul, Rituals and Ethics have been manipulated to exist as if derived from ,based upon and authenticated by the above three factual areas of Vedic subject matter. In order to attract, only the label is Vedic; the bottle and the contents are spurious. There is nothing Vedic about any of the four aspects of common man’s concept of religion.
WHAT TO KNOW:
The areas of knowledge that have been discussed in details by the authors of Vedas in ‘what to know’ are:-
· Knowledge of Self (आत्म ज्ञान) .This area of Vedic knowledge was corrupted to mean knowledge of common man’s concept of SOUL under religion the mechanics of which I have already presented in ‘FIRST BLUFF-SPIRITUALISM.
· Knowledge of Entire Creation (ब्रह्म ज्ञान). This area of Vedic knowledge was corrupted to mean knowledge of common man’s concept of GOD under religion. The details of the concept of GOD in Vedas and the mechanics of its corruption are discussed in the succeeding posting-SECOND BLUFF- RELIGION (continued)
HOW TO KNOW:
The happenings in nature were keenly observed by the Vedic authors. They observed, inferred and conducted experiments to confirm their inferences. That is how the human mind is engaged in pursuit of knowledge today also. They also did the same and gave the name YAJYA (यज्ञ) to this entire process of observation, inference and conducting experiments. This area of Vedic knowledge deals with methodology of experiments (यज्ञ विधान) as presumed by the authors of Vedas. It has been discussed in details which can be grouped as under:
· Experiments going on in nature
· Experiments undertaken by the authors
Both these subjects were corrupted to mean common man’s concept of RITUALS under religion. These studies of the systems of functioning of various natural elements ultimately led the authors of Vedas to know the rules, principles, laws and secrets of entire creation. This helped them to form opinions about knowledge of their ultimate aims of finding out about self (आत्म ज्ञान) and its relation with entire creation (ब्रह्म ज्ञान). Their conclusion was, “As the self is so is the universe”. (यथा पिंडे तथा ब्रह्मांडे). The term that is found in Vedas to describe this branch of knowledge is YAJYA i.e. the science of experimentation. YAJYA (यज्ञ) means experiment. The entire concept of experimentation thus can be studied as YAJYA VIDHAN (यज्ञ विधान). They observed and inferred that in nature a kind of experimentation was going on all the time and there were definite rules of existence and functioning. They identified these experimentations / happenings in nature with definite nomenclatures like ASHWAMEDH (अश्व मेध); PURUSHMEDH (पुरुष मेध), SARVMEDH (सर्व मेध), GAUMEDH (गौ मेध), NARMEDH (नर मेध) and PITRAMEDH (पित्र मेध) etc. In these nomenclatures the suffix MEDH (मेध) stands for happenings, experimentations (यज्ञYAJYA), while the prefixes are used as nouns denoting the sources of Energy responsible for these happenings. Hence the word ASHWA+MEDH (अश्व +मेध) will mean happenings/experimentations in nature due to source of energy known as ASHWA (अश्व) i.e. LIGHT. To find out the exact meanings and the contexts of the Vedic words a separate branch of knowledge dealing with words i.e. NIRUKT (निरुक्त) Philology under VEDANG (वेदांग) was developed by sage YASKACHARYA (यास्काचार्य) who himself has made frank and honest admission that he had been unable to find out the exact connotations of about four hundred words used in Vedas. The authors of Vedas also conducted individual experiments and identified these also by definite names. They found out the principles of Permanence, Completeness, Cause and Effect, Prediction, Sound, Sequential logic, Parallel logic, Accidental discovery, Rhythm, Existence and Organization, Probability, Statistics, Mathematics Astronomy and Justice etc.. The words used for the happenings in nature and their individual experiments were such that they acquired different meanings in different contexts. It appears that multi-meanings were foregone conclusions because the authors were using a highly developed and rich language where similes, metaphors etc are the ornamentations of a language. In English language these ornamentations are limited to simile, metaphor, alliteration, onomatopoeia, stress, intonation and some Miltonic and Shakespearean meters only; while in Sanskrit language these ornamentations in the forms of ALANKAR, RAS and CHHAND run into hundreds. For example, they gave the general name ASHWAMEDH (अश्वमेध) for the happenings (MEDH / YAJYA) in nature due to ASHWA (अश्व) i.e. LIGHT and they gave the specific name ASHWINI KUMAR (अश्विनी कुमार) for their experiments and findings about the functions of rays of light (अश्विनी कुमार). But then there are other meanings of the words ASHWA and MEDH i.e. the ‘horse’ and ‘sacrifice’ respectively Similarly the general name AGNIHOTRA (अग्निहोत्र) was given for the happenings / experiments in nature due to AGNI i.e. heat and fire and specific names TAP / TAPSYA (तप / तपस्या), HOM / HAVAN (होम / हवन) again meaning HEAT/AGNI were given to their individual efforts and experiments. These could have as well been the experiments conducted to find out the functioning of HEAT/FIRE as source of energy. Vedas are replete with words which indicate individual experimentation in various branches of knowledge. YOG (योग) is one such branch of knowledge i.e. a. bigger experiment which encompasses the methodologies of various individual experiments like POSTURE (आसन), BREATHING (प्राणायाम), RESOLUTION (धारणा), CONCENTRATION (ध्यान) and MEDITATION (समाधि). All these Vedic experiments were misconstrued even at times to bizarre imaginations of violence and pornography so much so that western philosophers considered VEDAS either as songs of shepherds or a symbol of some savage and barbaric civilization. The entire concept of experimentation i.e. YAJYA (यज्ञ) was converted into YAJYA KARM (यज्ञ कर्म) which degenerated into meaningless RITUALS (कर्म कांड).
HOW TO APPLY
This area of Vedic knowledge deals with Practical Ethics (व्यवहारिक नैतिकता) for human beings and uses the term DHARM (धर्म) which does not mean common man’s religion at all. The term DHARM appears to have been lifted from this area of Vedic knowledge and combined with arbitrary rules of conducts i.e. ethics to give birth to an imaginary and non-existent concept of common man’s concept of religion. The common man was thus duped to follow those arbitrary rules of conduct i.e. Religious Ethics (धार्मिक नैतिकता).This name gave the impression as those rule only were authenticated by DHARM as mentioned in Vedas. Practical Ethics (व्यवहारिक नैतिकता) of Vedas meant for all human beings was thus propagated to become Religious Ethics of individual religions only. So in the name of Vedas a bluff called Religion was instituted which by the passage of time has acquired the uncontrollable and irretrievable state of mind that refuses to listen to reason.
Practical Ethics of Vedas: After knowing the areas of knowledge and the methodology of finding the knowledge it became imperative for the authors of Vedas to lay down the rules for applying this knowledge for the ‘benefit of all’ and the ‘prosperity of all’ (सर्व जन हिताय सर्व जन सुखाय). The word DHARM (धर्म) is used in Vedas here to convey the sense of self discipline i.e. duty The English translation Religion does not convey the sense of the Vedic term DHARM (धर्म). In Vedas this term conveys two distinct usages:
· DHARM (धर्म) stands for DUTY (कर्तव्य)
· DHARM (धर्म) stands for PROPERTIES (गुण) and functions of various basic elements like earth, air, water, fire and vacuum
The authors of Vedas in their efforts to find out about ‘self’(आत्म ज्ञान) had concluded that since the human beings were compositionally above mentioned basic elements only; their behavior was bound to be affected by the DHARM (धर्म) i.e. properties and functions of these elements. Besides this natural structure of ‘self’, they also found out two more natural behavior patterns which come what may the human beings will follow. The names given to these were VARN (वर्ण) and ASHRAM (आश्रम). They were of the firm opinion that these two were also subject to DHARM (धर्म) or offshoots of DHARM and here the term DHARM (धर्म) was used to denote DUTY (कर्तव्य).
Dharm (धर्म) as Duty (कर्तव्य) for Varn (वर्ण) and Ashram (आश्रम): In Vedas there is no individual, male or female who has been spared the charter of duties. Each has been exhorted to fulfill his obligations i.e. (धर्म).It might appear an out of the world concept in modern days where every body is crying for the rights without an inkling of ever feeling an obligation for duties. There is a charter of Fundamental Rights in our Constitution but no mention of Fundamental Duties. Hopefully, it is added in due course of time. It is interesting to analyze the Vedic concept of Duties (धर्म) encompassing all without exception. With what classification of human beings did they achieve this impossible looking aim? Their modus operandi was down to earth simple and practical. They did not presume that human society existed as a manipulation of some class composition of rich, poor, high, middle, low or something in between and betweens. They neither presumed that it existed as a caste, creed, race, nation or sexual identity. They were of the firm opinion that all individuals have to perform two inter-dependent functions irrespective of any other consideration. Any performance of functions is possible only when acquired knowledge is put to use. Performance means application of knowledge; so for covering the entire humanity they decided to define and lay down explicitly these functions and the applications i.e. the duties (धर्म DHARM) associated with them. These functions are:
· FUNCTIONS OF VARN (वर्ण के कर्त्तव्य): Any individual must put to use or apply his gained knowledge. There are only four fields of activity where knowledge can be used. These fields were known as VARN (वर्ण) meaning color. In other words knowledge can acquire only four shades for its manifestation / application. An individual is engaged in any of the following four-fold pattern of duties at any point of time.
a) Duties of a Brahman (ब्राह्मण),
b) Duties of a Kshatriya (क्षत्रिय),
c) Duties of a Vaishya (वैश्य)
d) Duties of a Shudra (शूद्र).
Any individual is a mix of all the above four VARNS i.e. the areas of duty. The remarkable contribution of Vedas is to define explicitly and exclusively these duties in a way that an individual knows that at one point of time he is a Brahman and at the other he becomes a Kshatriya. The same person applies his knowledge as a Vaishya or Shudra at some other point of time.
· FUNCTIONS OF ASHRAM (आश्रम के कर्त्तव्य): Any individual for gaining and applying knowledge must pass through a chronological order of age so that he can live life meaningfully. The name given to this order was ASHRAM (आश्रम). These are also four in number, each Ashram spanning 25 years of life. The period of 25 years is more a presumption of mathematical ease than actual practice because the Vedic concept of longevity was minimum 100 years for each (जीवेम शरदः शतम). In actual practice the time period is bound to differ due to differences of sex and rates of achievements. But the concept of duties to be performed by each and everyone during these four periods of life is infallible. The range of duties in these four periods is so wide and varied that practically all human beings have been covered in it by the authors of VEDAS. Just to give an idea of mundane universality ; there are duties of a student, teacher, husband, wife, children, father, mother, son, daughter, host, guest, ruler and his administrative functionaries, executives and judges, householder, master, servant, and friend etc. The four chronological periods known as ASHRAM through which each individual must pass are:
a) BRAHMCHARYA (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम) –A period for duties of gaining education
b) GRAHSTHA (गृहस्थ आश्रम) – A period for utilizing education for duties of married life –a householder
c) VANPRASTHA (वानप्रस्थ आश्रम) – A period for duties of tendering advice and guidance to own children and
d) SANYAS (सन्यास आश्रम) - A period for duties of being more useful for the society at large).
So their criterion of covering the entire humanity was based on VARN and ASHRAM, the two concepts which were later on joined together to malign and bluff as VARNASHRAM SYSTEM.(वर्ण आश्रम व्यवस्था) The authors of Vedas knew it fully well about human behavior from their conclusions of ATM JYAN (आत्म ज्ञान) that any classification of human beings was bound to be based on ‘ignorance’ and hence unreliable and bound to fail being a bluff.. So they laid down the duties of each VARN (वर्ण) and ASHRAM (आश्रम) ensuring freedom to, know, decide and fulfill one’s duties so that there is no clash. It must be a repulsive idea for them to presume an evolved human society existing without duties. For Vedic authors demand for rights was an instinctive behavior based on ignorance and a sure sign of animal existence. They considered evolution as passing from the stage of ‘ignorance’ i.e. bluff to the stage of ‘enlightenment’. In other words evolution is passing from the stage of ‘demanding rights’ to the stage of ‘performing duties’. An individual performs his duties in four ways only because knowledge can possibly have only four applications. That way knowledge has only four colors i.e. VARN (वर्ण) and each individual keeps on performing his duties (धर्म) depending upon the color of the cloak that he has chosen to put on at that time .These VARNS (वर्ण) are, therefore ,the traits present in all the human beings at all the times. These were not the groups, divisions or castes of the society as is understood today. This corruption in the meanings of these VARNS (वर्ण) is the result of various processes working in the society. The foremost duties of these VARNS (वर्ण) were laid down as under:
· BRAHMAN (ब्राह्मण)-To use his gained knowledge during BRAHMCBARYA ASHRAM (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम) to acquire further knowledge and to spread knowledge.
· KSHATRIYA (क्षत्रिय) - To use his gained knowledge during BRAHMCHARYA ASHRAM (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम) to acquire the capabilities to protect and to increase strength.
· VAISHYA (वैश्य) - To use his gained knowledge during BRAHMCHARYA ASHRAM (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम) to acquire the capabilities to generate wealth and to increase wealth.
· SHUDRA (शूद्र). - To use his gained knowledge during BRAHMCHARYA ASHRAM (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम) to acquire the capabilities of providing comforts and to increase comforts.
An individual was free to choose as his livelihood / profession also from any of the four VARNS (वर्ण) above after gaining his initial knowledge during BRAHMCHARYA ASHRAM (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम). All were supposed to have been grounded thoroughly in this ASHRAM before making any choice of livelihood. Majority went to VAISHYAवैश्य and SHUDRA (शूद्र). professions as all the vocations catering for the needs arising out of the desire to earn money were covered by these two VARNS only and those who chose or allotted the VARNSवर्ण of BRAHMAN (ब्राह्मण)-and KSHATRIYA (क्षत्रिय) as their professions were few in numbers as it depended upon the need of the state. They became the responsibility of society and the State respectively and all their livelihood interests were looked after by the state as they were performing their duties in the interest of the state only. State and society were their supreme interests and those self interests that result from desire for wealth came in the end. In other words effort for creating and possessing wealth was not supposed to be ‘either their virtue or vice’. They were supposed to be above greed and enticement. A Brahman was preparing the posterity for the overall benefit of the state and society and a KSHATRIYA soldier in the words of Chanakya to King Chandragupta “While the citizenry of the State endeavors to make the State prosper and flourish, the Mauryan soldier guarantees it continues to exist. To this man, O Rajadhiraja, you owe a debt for that very guarantee which is a vital sine qua non to our nationhood. Please, therefore, see to it suo motu, that you are constantly alive and sensitive to the soldiers legitimate dues in every form and respect, be they his needs or his wants, including his place in the social order, and ensure that he receives them in time or ahead of time, in full measure, for he is NOT likely to ask for them himself “. Similarly the population falling under the chronological age groups of BRAHMCHARYA (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम) and SANYAS ASHRAMS (सन्यास आश्रम) was again the responsibility of society for their boarding, lodging, requirements of academic and training pursuits and comforts. This was catered for the simple and down to earth reasons. A student (ब्रह्मचारी) was being groomed for the needs of society only, so that he turns out to be a useful member and responds to his obligations towards society willfully. A SANYASI (सन्यासी) had put on the mantle of a BRAHMAN (ब्राह्मण) a professional teacher and was engaged in pouring his entire accumulated experience for each and everyone without any bias or selfish interest. One of the methods for achieving this end was to keep on moving from one institution of learning to another. In understanding the concept of VARN (वर्ण) nobody ever compromised the understanding that an individual was in all the four roles at any stage of his life with inbuilt capabilities of administration. For example an individual is BRAHMAN (ब्राह्मण) when he is teaching his children or telling the people around whatever he knows or reading a book or collecting some information or is in the process of learning. .The same person is a KSHATRIYA (क्षत्रिय) when he is trying to protect himself, his kiths and kins or the unknown people from hostile environment. It might as well be helping in calamities. He is a VAISHYA (वैश्य) when he is acquiring wealth and planning to increase his resources and the same person is a SHUDRA (शूद्र) when he is trying to make himself and others comfortable by providing his expertise and skills of maintenance and production. This VARN (वर्ण) system was never to be understood as a water tight compartmentalization of a bluff called Caste System. Is caste system really a degenerated form of VEDIC VARNASHRAM System? Let’s find out.
PERTINENT QUESTIONS AND THE MECHANICS OF BLUFF
It is evident from above that in India, only the term (धर्म) Religion not its purport encompassing Duties was lifted from ‘How to apply’ discussions of Vedas. The concept of Vedic Duties (व्यवहारिक नैतिकता) enshrined in VARN and ASHRAM was replaced by the religious duties meaning Ethics (धार्मिक नैतिकता) of a particular religion for a common man. Then it was stuffed with terms found in ‘What to know’ and ‘How to know’. From ‘What to know’ the terms ATM (आत्म) and BRAHM (ब्रह्म) were lifted from Vedic ATM JYAN (आत्मज्ञान) and BRAHM JYAN (ब्रह्म ज्ञान) respectively and mutilated into ATMA (आत्मा) i.e. the SOUL and BRAHMA (ब्रह्मा) i.e. the GOD to give shape to a common man’s concept of SOUL and GOD under religion. The entire concept of experimentation from ‘How to know’ i.e. YAJYA (यज्ञ) was converted into YAJYA KARM (यज्ञ कर्म) which got degenerated into meaningless RITUALS (कर्मकांड) But this simplistic explanation of how the non-existent concepts can be made to exist; can also give birth to certain pertinent looking questions. That is what the mischievous beauty of ‘bluff’ is. We have been tuned to accept bluff as excellent reason and on confrontation of failure, move from one bluff to another. How has it happened in this case of religion?
For that let me first take the two sets of pertinent looking questions.
· Is RELIGION really a degenerated form of Vedic Dharm?
· Is SOUL really a degenerated form of Vedic Atm Jyan?
· Is the concept of RITUALS really a degenerated form of Vedic Yajya?
· Is GOD really a degenerated form of Vedic Brahm?
· Is ETHICS really a degenerated form of Vedic Dharm?
Now sample another set of pertinent looking questions:
· Is CASTE SYSTEM really a degenerated form of some Vedic Varnashram System?
· Is UNTOUCHABILITY really a degenerated form of some Vedic classification of human society?
· Was practice of or / is glorification of SATI system (voluntary / forced immolation by the widow) really a degenerated form of some Vedic Dharm?
· Is FORCIBLE SECLUSION and observance of INHUMAN PRACTICES by a widow really a degeneration of some Vedic Dharm?
· Is DOWRY SYSTEM and the formalities connected with it in observance of some duties by the girl’s kiths and kins really a degenerated form of some Vedic Dharm?
· Is CLASSIFICATION of relationships as higher or lower in hierarchy (like ‘gainer’ or ‘loser’) really a degenerated form of some Vedic Dharm?
· Is DESIRE FOR A SON as an offspring really a degenerated form of some Vedic mandate covered under Dharm of a son?
· Is practice of ELIMINATING GIRL CHILD really a degenerated form of some Vedic Dharm?
· Is labeling a girl child as SOMEBODY ELSE'S PROPERTY (PARAYA DHAN) really a degenerated form of some Vedic Dharm?
· Is MALTREATING a girl child because she is PARAYA DHAN really a degenerated form of some Vedic dictum?
· Is practice of CHILD MARRIAGE and then SECOND MARRIAGE (GAUNA) really a degenerated form of some Vedic mandate?
· Is practice of SHRADH / TARPAN funeral feasts really a degenerated form of some sacred duty Dharm of Vedas?
· Is BEGGING INDUSTRY or THUGEE practice of William Bentinck’s period / or its modern day version DAAN a practice of filling the coffers of religion, really a degenerated version of some factually exalted and glorified mandate of charity in Vedas?
The list can be unending. The answers to the second set of questions will differ from die-hards to rationalists. The die-hards will justify each and every action (highlighted in bold letters) howsoever obnoxious and inhuman it might be with the pretext of sanctity of Vedas as a matter of religious Ethics. Majority of these die-hards will go into hibernation the moment the authority of law is unleashed and the fear of punishment is made to appear real to them. It happens because they were the products of the State and its instruments only at some point of time in history. They will reemerge the moment State weakens. They are actually the first line of ‘bluffers’. The rationalists on the other hand immediately see the unfavourable aspects of the highlighted actions but still justify their newly concocted versions again as a matter of religious Ethics. They see in part a degeneration of that Vedic value system which they had interpreted and presumed to be correct. They refuse to accept any other opinion. Their arguments run like this: “Actually it meant this in Vedas; it was introduced for this and that reason etc”. And these new meanings and new reasons are so innumerable that we get enmeshed into a situation which can be best described as ‘bluff after a bluff’. They form the second line of ‘bluffers’-a kind of neo die-hards and they immediately get the blessings and protection from the state and society. In course of time they become die-hards. That is what the mechanics of bluff is: to make a non-existent thing exist till it meets failure and then create a new one. Now come to the answers to the first set of questions. Both the die-hards and neo die-hards or so called rationalists will immediately vouch for the highlighted words i.e. Religion, God, Soul, Rituals and Ethics as understood by a common man or as he has been indoctrinated to understand as highly laudable concepts existing in Vedas. Our malaise is so deep rooted that we cannot even see the obvious symptoms of a sick mind as reflected in the highlighted words of above mentioned SECOND SET of questions and we try to justify them as sanctioned by Vedas. It is nothing short of Talibanisation. We refuse to accept that such obnoxious behavior patterns cannot be the part of Vedic thought from any imagination. So how can we accept that such holy looking words viz religion, God, soul, rituals and ethics cannot be the part of Vedic thought? Yes- all highlighted words of the first and second set of questions enumerated above are non-existent in Vedas and against the spirit of very KNOWLEDGE these books set to profess. We have experimented with bluffs only in calling and believing it to be Vedic knowledge. And that’s how humanity will keep on behaving till it reaches the next stage i.e. the stage of enlightenment. This is the prediction of Vedic knowledge. In this prediction also we have bluffed ourselves by substituting words like destiny, fate and God’s will etc. Actually we have never given even a fair trial to any Vedic thought. Now just take the example of so called and unfavorably debated Vedic Varnashram System. Has it really been discussed as a system in Vedas? The concept of VARN has been discussed in RIGVED under PURUSH SUKT and the concept of ASHRAM has been discussed in different chapters of YAJURVED. We join the two terms together, call it VARNASHRAM, face the music of our bluff and malign it as a degenerated version of Vedic thought? The first pre-requisite of this entire Vedic edifice is acceptance by the state and society a responsibility to provide free education to all its subjects during BRAHMCHARYA ASHRAM (ब्रह्मचर्य आश्रम). We have converted education into a profit generating industry for a few and hope that a product of this industry will do something beneficial for that society which had initiated him into the art of fleecing! The state is a party to this exploitation as it provides protection and incentives to those who are engaged in making education a noble industry! The second pre-requisite for this Vedic concept is acceptance by the state a responsibility to look after the entire interests of those who have chosen at the behest of the State the profession (VARN) of (BRAHMAN) i.e. teaching related aspects and the profession of (KSHATRIYA) i.e. soldiering and related aspects. Now just have a look at the ground realities today. About the status of a teacher and a soldier lesser said the better. Contrary to Vedic thought of providing and maintaining SPECIAL EDUCATION ZONES i.e. the BRAHMCHARYA ASHRAM the state pursues zealously the policies of creating SPECIAL ECONOMIC ZONES and considers it a panacea and provides all enticing facilities to a selected few only engaged in VAISHYA and SHUDRA duties forgetting completely that a corporate primary concern is filling its own coffers and never an activity which caters for the benefit of all and the prosperity for all. On failure we are left wailing only or move to another bluff. In the next posting I shall discuss the mechanics of how a common man has been duped to have faith in GOD of VEDAS which does not exist at all in VEDAS under the TITLE- THE SECOND BLUFF-RELIGION (continued)