In the praise of Kama || (कामबोधनम् -4) || Kama – The eternal power of Creation ||

We had been discussing following shloka of Atharva Veda –

कामस्तदग्रे समवर्तत मनसो रेतः प्रथमं यदासीत् |
स काम कामेन बृहता सयोनी रायस्पोषं यजमानाय घेहि || – अथर्व 19/52/1

तदग्रे कामः = तद् अग्रे कामः = तद् कामः अग्रे = व्यापक काम सर्वप्रथम हैतन् विस्तारे तनोति – तनुते + क्विप् = तद् , नस्य दः | जो अपने को सर्वत्र वर्तमान रखता है , व्यापक है , वह तद् = सर्वव्यापी है | काम सर्वत्रहै | इसलिये काम को तद् कहा गया है | तद् = ब्रह्म | काम एव तद् | तद् एव कामः |

Kama (काम) by etymologically has been called Tad (तद्). Tad means ever pervading and therefore it also means Bhrahm (ब्रह्म), the primal cause that has expanded itself to become universe and individualised consciousness (jeeva). Therefore Kama is Brahmn.

Now we shall further proceed and understand different words of this shloka and understand its meaning as contemplated by revered Gurudev Shri Atharvan ji Maharaj.

मनसः आसीत् = काम की उत्पत्ति मन से हुई है। वेद  वुक्ति है – चन्द्रमा मनसो जातः। इस वुक्ति से चन्द्रमा = काम।  चन्द्रमा का अर्थ है – आह्लाद, आनंद, हर्ष, सुख, प्रसाद।

Kama or desire comes from mind or mana. Vedas declare – chandrama Manaso Jahah. By this declaration Moon = Kaama. The meaning of Chandrama (moon) – Joy, Bliss, Happiness, Pleasure and grace. चन्द आह्लादे दीप्तौ च चन्दति – By this linguistic derivation it would mean – To shine, to receive bliss, become happy. + णिच् चन्दयति + रक् = चन्द्र | + असुन् चन्द्रमस्   = चन्द्रमा, आनन्द, हर्ष | +सु = चन्द्रमाः | In the above mantra we have this equivalence  “कामः मनसः जातः” meaning – Kama is born from mind. From the universal mind is born the moon (chandrama).  Hence Kama (desire for pleasure, growth, accumulation, procreation, expansion, sex) and moon are one and the same. Moon is Kaama embodied. Moon waxes and wanes (increases and decreases).. Kama also increases and decreases. Moon is seen with spot (impure), Kama is also not pure. Moon cycle has two halves (Dark and Bright). Kama also has two aspects of it – auspicious and inauspicious. A moon that is spotless, adorns the forehead of Shiva, and auspicious Kama is seated in the mind of a blissful Yogi!

स काम – हे काम तू स (सह) है। सह = नाम , बल। स – सबके साथ रहने वाला। स = सर्प (टेढ़ा मेढ़ा, भयङ्कर, विषैला, अविश्वसनीय )। स = समीर, हवा (गतिशील, सर्वत्र विचरने वाला सब प्रवेश करने एवं सबमे में से बाहर होने वाला )। स = सपक्ष, पक्षी (उड़ने वाला , पकड़  न आने वाला ) स = संगीत (सब ओर गमन करने वाला, सबको प्रिय लगने वाला )। स = साहस युक्त , साहसी, सत्वर, शीघ्री।  

Kama is having so many properties that are like – forceful, unreliable, unpredictable, moving, un-graspable, venomous, fierce, able to enter and exit from everything and everyone, able to move around in all directions, courageous, quick and accelerated.

सयोनी – शकार और सकार की योनि (उत्पत्तिस्थान)

शकार = शक्ति (ऊर्जा) । सकार = सह (बल) 

Kaama has two Yonis (Gives birth to two things) – Force and Speed, Power and Action. When an individual is desirous (of sex) he experiences increase in (his strength to lift and bear more weight) strength. An excited man (under the influence of sexual drive or kama) can lift an otherwise heavy woman in that state (impulse of Kama) and he moves with excess speed in the act. In the same way a woman, under the influence of kama becomes capable of bearing the weight of a heavy man on her tender body. Such an extra weight upon her body causes no discomfort rather gives her pleasure; It is the unique power of Kama. 

Kama is called सयोनी for it is generator of the pleasure for Man and Woman both. योनि = यु + नि। यु = मिश्रणे अमिश्रणे च। यौति – मिलाना, मिलना। युयोति – अलग  अलग करना , वियुक्त करना। युनाति – युनीते , बांधना, जकड़ना, संश्लिष्ट करना , विश्लिष्ट करना।

That, which binds a Male and a Female, conjoins then together and also separates them is called Yoni. Yoni – means body, the place of origin or birth. The bodies of man and woman meets. Their sexual organs come together and move away. The root cause of this process of coming together (संयोजन) and moving away (वियोजन) is Kama. It is the same reason for which Kama (काम) is called Sayoni (सयोनी ). सयोनी – स्त्रीत्व एवं पुरुषत्व का स्थान। Sayoni – is the place for manhood and womanhood. Day-Night, Pain-Pleasure, Togetherness-Separation – these all are created due to kama. Therefore KaamaTattva  is Sayoni beyond all doubts.

बृहता कामेन – बृहत् काम से,बढे हुए काम से, ब्रह्मरूप काम से। काम प्राचुर्य से, कामाधिक्य से।

This word simply means – with the greatly or infinitely increased Kama.

रायः = रा दाने राति + डै = रै – धन, संपत्ति, यश। इसका द्वितीय विभक्ति में रायम रायौ रायः है। रायः पद बहुवचन होने से इसका अर्थ हुआ समस्त धनों को। रै शब्द देय धनों का वाचक है।

Meaning – Capacity to provide/give us various valuable things such as Money, Possessions and Fame etc.

पोषम् = पुष् , पालने प्रसन्नतायाञ्च पोषयति – ते , पोषति, पुष्यति, पुष्णाति – पोषण करना, पालन करना, रक्षा करना, बढाना, धारण करना , फलना-फूलना , समृद्ध होना, प्रशंसा करना, यशस्वी होना + धञ = पोष – संधारण, धारणशक्ति, यश, प्रसंशा । समृद्धि, रक्षणशक्ति। + अम् = पोषम् – संधारकता को । पितृत्व को । मातृत्व को ।

The one which nourishes, protects, gives growth & abundance, glory, appreciation and the carrier of fatherhood and motherhood.

यजमानाय घेहि – मुझ यज्ञकर्ता को प्रदान करो। यज् + शानच = यजमान –  वह व्यक्ति जो नियमित रूप से यज्ञ / हवन / होम  करता है तथा उस यज्ञ का भार स्वयं वहन करता है। वह व्यक्ति जो यज्ञ करवाने के लिए पुरोहित व् पुरोहितों को नियुक्त करता है, वह भी यजमान है।  यजमान + ङे = यजमानाय – यजमान याज्ञिक के लिये । धा धारणपोषणयोः + लोट् म. पु. एक व. = धेहि – धत्तात् । पालन करो, प्रदान करो। काम यदि दहनकारक है तो वह पालनकर्ता भी है । तभी यहां धेहि पद आया है ।

मन्त्रान्वय – कामः यद् । कामः तद् । कामः रेतः । कामः सः । कामः सयोनी । कामः अग्रे मनसः आसीत् । काम! (त्वम्) यजमानाय रायः पोषम् (च) धेहि |

Complete meaning of the mantra (brief and direct) – Kaama is controller of the world. Kaama is all pervading. Kaama is essence/ force / light. Kaama is fatal, mean, speedy, visible and invisible. Kaama is main principle. In the beginning Kaama was born from the mind. O Kamadeva! bless the virtuous one who engages in the Yajna (Fire sacrifice) with all sorts of wealth and glory.

I bow down to this eternal, divine force Kaama that is above all.

In the next Vedic Shloka we will discuss other secret and unseen aspects of Kama – The power behind all worldly powers.

Shivoham!

-Acharya Agyaatadarshan Anand Nath

It is my honour to place above the literal translation of 
understanding given by Veda-Guru paramahamsa Shri ‘Aatharvan’ 
Ji Maharaj. The permission to translate his works in English
was given by Guruvar in 2016 itself.. but due to my various 
engagements it could not begin earlier. This Chaitra Navaratri 
of 2019 I have finally took up this himalayan task of 
translating his works in English language as per his wish so 
that non-hindi people and even westerners can taste the divine 
nectar of his profound understanding of Vedas. I must say this 
in the beginning itself that all the substance and great 
teachings in this text are His (Gurus) and in this translation 
if there are any mistakes those have to be mine. I am sure
the wise and learned readers will pardon me for the omissions
and other injustice in conveying the meaning of his wisdom
that I may have committed. I humbly bow down to divinity in 
Gurudev and feel blessed for his eternal guidance.

 

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In the praise of Yajnyopaveetam || (यज्ञभावनम्-5) : || The glory of Sacred Thread ||

Shivoham!

In the previous post of the subject I placed the last Shloka from Mahabharata for your contemplation.. We ended at –
यथोक्तमग्निहोत्रं वै जुह्वते विजितेन्द्रियाः |
ये यान्त्यपुनरावृत्तिं भित्वा चादित्यमण्डलम् ||
Those who perform and enjoy Agnihotra (discipline of yajna) while keeping their senses under their control are able to destroy the cycle of birth and death piercing this visible domain and go beyond Surya Mandala.

|| Brahmin wearing Yajnyopaveetam ||

Now let’s move further.

There is one eligibility criterion to be able to offer Aahuti (sacrifice in fire) – Having gone through Yajyopaveetam (the Sacred Thread) process. There are many names for this ‘Sacred Thread’ – Yagyopaveeta, Vratabandha, RakshaaSootra, BrahmSootra, BrahmBandhan, RakshaaBandhan, Rakshee , and Janeoo. Janeoo or Yagyopaveeta is a sacred bond. A Janeoo has got three threads and therefore it is also called TriSootra. Each of 3 threads are further made up of 3 yarns each thus it contains total of 9 yarns (threads) – representing 9 Grahas (Planets). The who wears this yagyopaveeta is the keeper of NavaGrahas. नवग्रहधारिणे यज्ञोपवीतिने  विप्राय नमः |

Three threads of Janeoo / Yagyopaveeta are BhooLoka (भूलोक) / Bhuvarloka (भुवर्लोक)   / SwarLoka (स्वर्लोक) and Brahmaa (ब्रह्मा) , Vishnu (विष्णु) and Rudra (रूद्र) . They are three times – Past (भूत) , Present (वर्तमान) and future (भविष्य). They are 3 purusharthas (पुरुषार्थ)– Dharm (धर्म), Arth (अर्थ) and Kama (काम). They are three vedas (त्रिवेद) – Rig (ऋग ), Yaju (यजु) and Saama (साम) and Deva (देव) , Rishi (ऋषि) and Pitras (पित्र) also Satva (सत्व) , Raja (रज) and Tama (तम). Thus this thread symbolizes Triloka (the three worlds – त्रिलोक) , TriMoorti (the three presiding deities of the world, त्रिमूर्ति), Trikaala (Three times, त्रिकाल), Trivarga (Three groups, त्रिवर्ग) , Trigana (Three representatives of specific domains, त्रिगण) and Triguna (Three properties / hues of qualities, त्रिगुण). This pious thread or yagyopaveeta (यज्ञोपवीत) is reflection of sheela (शील, benevolent inner state of being) , sadaachaara (सदाचार, right conduct) and satya (सत्य , rooted in Truth). Vedas have called it – Mekhala (Girdle, मेखला ). This Yagyopaveeta; Being embodiment of Tapa, Bala, and Medha is giver of long life. Following mantra should be seen –

  1. श्रद्धाया दुहिता तपसो अधिजाता |
    स्वस अृषीणां भूतकृतां बभूव |
    सा नो मेखले मतिमा धेहि
    मेधां अथो नो धेहि तप इन्द्रियं च || अथर्व वेद 6/133/4 ||
  2. यां त्वा पूर्वे भूतकृतः अृषयः परिबेधिरे |
    सा त्वं परिष्वजस्व मां दीर्घायुत्वाय मेखले ||  अथर्व वेद 6/133/5 ||

Below the origin or the word Mekhalaa has been taken up as per the Sanskrit language grammar rules (shaiv sutras)-

मख् संज्ञायां घ +  लच  = मखल – यज्ञमय | स्वार्थे अण = मेखल,  एकारवृद्धि | + टाप् =  मेखला – यज्ञ प्रवर्तक सूत्र , यज्ञमयी |

श्रद्धाया: दुहिता – means the daughter of faith, born of the womb of faith. As per shrutis and puraanas the name of this daughter is also Nishthaa (Steadfastness)

तपस: अधिजाता – born out of tapa (austerity). Out of Tapa is born driti (patience or capacity to hold). The power to hold is dhriti.

स्वस अृषीणाम् – One that is born with Rishis. It means co-born of Rishis, their sister. (स्वस् सहगतौ प्राप्तौ च + तृच् = स्वसृ + सु = स्वसा स्वसः ).

भूतकृताम् – भूतकृता + अम् | The one who created Bhutas (Tattvas) – BhootaNirmaatree. The one that gives birth to creatures and this creation (srishti).

बभूव = Has become.

मेखले सा  न: मतिमा धेहि  = O Mekhale! Make us Matimaan (with power of discretion). (मतिमा = मतिमान)

अथो न: मेधाम् धेहि = And give us pure intelligence .

तप: इन्द्रियम् च (धेहि) = bestow us with Tapa (Power of forbearance) and Indriya (power of organs).

Mantra’s meaning is thus – The Yajnyopaveeta or Mekhsla or Sacred thread is seat of faith, embodiment of patience, friend or co-born of wisdom and creator of this world. May this sacred thread bless the wearer of it with power of discretion, pure intelligence. May this give the wearer power to bear joys, pains and sorrows of the world and support us by giving us strength (of body and inner instruments).

Now let us move to the meaning of next mantra from Atharva Veda. We shall break this mantra in small segments to understand its meaning in completeness.

भूतकृतः = The one who creates the bhutas i.e. Brahmaa (The God of creation)

याम् त्वा पूर्वे (धृतः) = You, who were worn in the beginning of the universe

अृषयः परिबेधिरे = Rishis , who had wrapper you around their own bodies.

मेखले दीर्घायुत्वायO Mekhale ! For attaining a long life.

सा त्वम् माम् परि ष्वजस्व = You, please embrace me (enmesh my body) from all the sides.

The meaning of this mantra – is clear from the explanation of it’s segments above.

This sacred thread finds its place in case of infants, women and shudras in waist or neck. Knowledgeable Dwija wear it on their left shoulder and it follows the back and left-side only to hang around the right thigh. It is giver of long life. मेखलायै नमः |

The second eligibility for offering Aaahuti (sacrifice) is Vaidik. One must have studied and chanted Vedas, have explored the Self, has good conduct and is knowledgeable. One should be able to grasp the meaning of Veda Mantras and should also be able to pronounce the mantras correctly – such a person can take initiation in Yajna. This is perfectly right for without proper knowledge of  Veda Mantra if Yajna is done it is a futile process. Mantras are real power of Yajna Process. The ornament of Yajna is correct mantra chanting and proper pronounciation. The power of Yajna is the knowledge of the Mantra’s meaning. Mantra, Proper chanting of Mantra and Meaning (knowledge) of Mantra – when combine together we can reap the fruits of Yajna.

-Acharya Agyaatadarshan Anand Nath

The Agnihotra is not a process that can be performed
arbitrarily. Gurudev Shri Aatharvan ji Maharaj who 
attained enlightened through the agnihotra & Mantra 
Sadhana shows us by quoting mantras from Athrava Veda
that Yajna is to be done only by a capable person who
knows the mantra, its meaning and correct chant. The
most important of all is the Yajnyopaveeta - Having
gone through the process of sacred ceremony of it.
Such a person receives fruits of Yajna!
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In the praise of divine fire (यज्ञभावनम्-4) : || Agnihotram ||

Shivoham!

In the previous post of the subject I placed the last Shloka from Mahabharata for your contemplation.. We ended at –
अग्निहोत्रफला वेदाः शीलवृत्तफलं श्रुतम् |
रतिपुत्रफला दारा, दत्त भुक्तफलं धनम् ||
  • महाभारत , अश्वमेधिक पर्व , अ. 92
 Just as the fruit of reading scriptures is good and graceful conduct, the fruit of a woman (as wife) is rati (sexual pleasure and all the beauties of life) and santati (progeny), the fruit of money is charity and luxury; the same way the fruit of Vedic studies is Agnihotra (discipline of yajna).

Now let’s move further.

रसाः स्नेहास्तथा गन्धा रत्नानि गणयस्तथा |
काञ्चनानि च लौहानि हि अग्निहोत्रकृतेSभवन्  ||
आयुर्वेदो धनुर्वेदो मीमांसा न्यायविस्तरः |
धर्मशास्त्रं च तत्सर्वं अग्निहोत्रेकृते क्रितम् ||
छन्दः शिक्षा कल्पश्च तथा व्याकरणानि च |
शास्त्रं ज्योतिः निरुक्तं च आग्निहोत्रेकृते कृतम् ||
इतिहास पुराणं च गाथाश्चोपनिषत् तथा |
आथर्वणानि कर्माणि चाग्निहोत्रेकृते कृतम् ||

  • महाभारत , अश्वमेधिक पर्व , अ. 92

It is said that all the materials, rasas, fragrant substances, Gems, Gold and Iron – everything has been created for Agnihotra (Yajnam). All the Shastras such as Dhrama, Nyaya, Ayurveda, Dhanurveda etc. are created for the Agnihotra. The 6 parts of Vedas (Vedaanga) Chhanda (metre), Kalp (Method of Rituals), Shikshaa (Phonetics), vyaakaran (Grammar), Jyotish (Knowledge received from Cosmology), Nirukta (Meaning of words/Etymology/Dictionary) are all for Agnihotra. All the books contaning records of time, wisdom, Truth, and rituals like History, Upanishadas, Puranas, Karma (TantraShaastra) are created for the Agnihotra.

Further it is said –

वेद्यर्थं पृथिवी सृष्टः सम्भरार्थं तथैव च |
इध्मार्थमथ यूपार्थं ब्रह्मा चक्रे वनस्पतिम् ||
गावो यज्ञार्थमुत्पन्ना दक्षिणार्थं तथैव च |
सुवर्णः रजतं चैव पात्रकुम्भार्थमेव च ||
दर्भाः संस्तरणार्थं तु रक्षसां रक्षणाय च |
पूजनार्थ द्विजाः सृष्टास्तारका दिवि देवताः ||

  • महाभारत , अश्वमेधिक पर्व , अ. 92

To support the altar for fire ceremony (Yajna) and produce various materials for the Yajna Lord Brahmaa created this earth. The plant kingdom was created to produce samidhaa (material to be offered in fire) and Yupa. Cows are created for their use in dakshinaa (Remuneration given to the priest) and supplying various substances needed in the sacred fire-ritual. Gold and Silver has been created to be utilized in creating various utensils and pots used in Yajna. Kusha (Tadch grass, the Sacrificial grass or bot. Desmostachya bipinnata) has been created to be used in covering the ground around the Kunda (Sacrificial Fire Place) and to protect against Raakshasas (evil forces, demonic forces). The constellations of stars, the heavenly Gods & Goddesses and Braahmins have been created for participating in and conducting the Yajna.

It is said that those Dwijas (twice born) who meticulously follow the process of Agnihotra , their endeavours such as daanam (donation), homam (Fire Sacrifice for purity of self), Yajna (Fire sacrifice for the purpose of pleasing Gods, fulfillment of some purpose), Adhyaapan (teaching) are always successful.

The good karmas of Agnihotris (ones Performing Fire sacrifice) are accepted and kept intact by Sun god (who shines with thousands of rays).

धारयेद् यत् सहस्रांशः सुकृतं आग्निहोत्रिणाम् |

Therefore Bhagwan (Lord) says; Those who wish to elevate themselves, must meticulously follow the Agnihotra daily.

होतव्यं विधिवद् राजन् ऊर्ध्वमिच्छन्ति ये गतिम् || महाभारत , अश्वमेधिक पर्व , अ. 92 ||

The Agnihotra should be treated as atma (one’s own identity) and therefore one should never criticise or leave the practice even for a moment.

आत्मवन्नावमन्तव्यमग्निहोत्रं युधिष्ठिर |
नत्याज्यं क्षणमप्येदग्निहोत्रं युधिष्ठिर ||

  • महाभारत , अश्वमेधिक पर्व , अ. 92

The importance, power and significance of Agnihotra is in helping the performer transcend this place and piercing through the solar gravitation such people reach their ultimate destination. This achievement is for those who perform and enjoy Agnihotra while keeping their senses under their control.

It is said –

यथोक्तमग्निहोत्रं वै जुह्वते विजितेन्द्रियाः |
ये यान्त्यपुनरावृत्तिं भित्वा चादित्यमण्डलम् ||

More in the next post..

-Acharya Agyaatadarshan Anand Nath

The Agnihotra is not just the process of burning fire 
in a Kunda (sacrificial fire pit) but an attitude of 
dissipating all our possessions including our body and 
actions for the ultimate goal of transcending this 
material plane. To get rid of Anaatma Bhava. Gurudev 
Shri Aatharvan ji Maharaj who attained enlightened 
through the agnihotra & Mantra Sadhana chooses to
quote from the 'Mahabharata'. As per Vedic wisdom 
Yajna is capable of alleviating all the sufferings 
of human life by the divine grace of brahamn 
operating in the form of Agni(Deva)!
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The Gita: Srimad Bhagwadgita: श्रीमद्भगवद्गीता : Chapter 2:17

|| प्रातः स्मरणीय प्रथमगुरु पं. श्री मुरलीधर जी मिश्र ||

I, Acharya Agyaatadarshan Anand Nath sa-shaktikaayai bow down at the lotus feet of my first Guru, my revered father Pandit Shri Murli Dhar ji Mishra,  Vidya Guru Kaul Shiromani Shri Shivanand Nath ji, Yoga Guru Paramhamsa Shri Balendu Giri ji Maharaj, Tantra Guru Shri Shri Anta Devji Maharaj, Vama Guru Shri Kaleshwaranand Ji Maharaj and all the compassionate Masters, divine souls of Gurumandala..  I pray for their love, support and guidance always..

Shivoham!

अविनाशि तु तद्विद्धि येन सर्वमिदं ततम्।
विनाशमव्ययस्यास्य न कश्चित् कर्तुमर्हति।।2.17।।

avinaashi tu tad-viddhi yena sarvam-idam tatam |
vinaasham-avyayasya-asya na kashcit kartum-arhati ||

But know that the consciousness (Truth), which pervades the whole body (of the cosmos), is imperishable. No one can destroy the indestructible consciousness (Truth).

Krishna further says..  Know that the self in its essential nature is imperishable. The whole of ‘this’ insentient, inanimate matter, is pervaded by the self (The Truth). Idam – this word is used to point out to something and Sarvam – means all. SarvamIdam – meaning, all that can be pointed out there (whole domain of experiences – smell, taste, vision, touch and sound) is permeated by this quintessential Truth.  This Truth being all pervasive  and extreme subtle, cannot be destroyed.  Every entity other than the self (The consciousness) is capable of being pervaded by the self, is brought to light by this ‘Self’ and hence [ IdamSarvam- All this (world) ] is grosser than the ‘Self’.

A true teacher is one who can speak in the language that can be comprehended by the student. Different words suit different emotional states. Further different words ignite different emotional responses. A true teacher is capable of determining the inner emotional tone of his/her student and based on the inner state of mind he should deliver his knowledge in the most effective words, language and tonality.

The very quality of Truth is ‘na-Abhavo’ that which never ceases to exist. It was clearly stated by Krishna in the last verse (verse 16) but He chooses to reiterate the same Truth using the warrior’s lingo. Warrior is in that state of mind where he is ready to destroy, annihilate, crush and perish the enemy at any cost. The word ‘Perish’ – has two dictionary meanings 1. lose its normal qualities (as in case of perishable goods where they decompose or lose their quality) 2. Die (cease to exist)..  ‘Imperishability’ an adjective of the ‘Truth’ has been judiciously picked up by Krishna in the war-zone where a warrior’s mind is constantly thinking about destruction of enemies. Arjuna’s original fear was that he did not want to destroy (kill) these (idam) people (though sarvam is not used in limited sense i.e. denoting people only here rather everything that is being perceived.. including one’s own body).

It is amazing to see how Krishna is choosing his words so judiciously.. and as the Master of Masters is reorganizing Arjuna’s mind only to make him available for the wisdom that he is revealing. He does it by completely shattering his existing material-world-view. Arjuna’s grief is rooted in the fear of losing these (Arjuna considers them as his own) people in this war. Here Krishna is declaring the consciousness is the Self (thus every being) and it pervades even the inanimate objects. Consciousness is the subtlest of all.. it is the ever existing cause of the world, it supports everything’s existence. It is ‘Avyay‘ – that can not be annihilated. The consciousness remains unaffected even when the objects, people and things are destroyed. The world can be destroyed but the consciousness is imperishable. In reality Lord says that the bodies are perishable but the essence, the Truth shall remain intact.

Krishna is using another word ‘Arhata’ that means eligibility, ability or capacity. This word is so apt to be used here for it challenges. Such words touch specific centers in human psyche that ignite the fighting spirit – competitiveness and action. Arjuna is a born fighter, a challenger. Telling such a fighter that you do not have capacity to destroy the essence, even if you destroy these bodies is only going to invoke an action response. This is what Krishna is aiming at!

Practical Takeaway : The responsibility of communication is totally yours. If you are not able to put across what you intend, if you are being misunderstood – try finding better words that suit the state of mind of the person you are communicating with.

Shivoham!

-Acharya Agyaatadarshan Anand Nath

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How to Boost Immunity: The Secrets from Yoga-Tantra and Ayurveda! (3 of 3)

A lot of studies by modern scientists and psychologists prove beyond all doubts that the human being is much more than the total sum of all the chemical and biological processes happening in his body. They also postulate that humans need the crucial ‘Emotional-social’ connection to feel fulfilled and joyous. These are perfect observations however what ancient Rishis say is still more important and critical. They postulate that the overall balance of energies and activities of various energy centers (they call these centers “chakras”) within the human body is essential for one’s blissful disposition and health on all the levels – physical, mental and spiritual. If we consider this aspect of ‘Energy Abundance’ & ‘Balanced Energies’ then living a disciplined life in synchronicity with the cosmic life-sources becomes the key to health and immunity.

Vedic sciences such as system of Yoga, Tantra, and Ayurveda over the period of centuries have successfully demonstrated that this ‘Energy Abundance’ and ‘Balance’ can be created by everyone through disciplined living and adopting certain ‘Energy Practices’. We have to be immune and energetic both, and that I call Immunenergetic! In this last post on the topic of immunity let us focus on the simple tools and techniques that are available in the ancient system of Yoga/Kriya and Tantra that can be easily learnt and utilized by one and all without much of difficulty.

BEING IMMUNENERGETIC
ENERGY ABUNDANCE & BALANCE

As per Vedic wisdom the two sources of life, energy and healing on this planet are Sun (Hot) and Moon (Cool). Sun gives warmth and energy during the day and in the night temperatures go down, and the moon helps in redistribution of the assimilated energies of the Sun over the planet. Therefore, these two celestial bodies sustain the life on earth by creating the desired critical balance of energies.

Boosting Immunity the Hatha Yoga & Swara Way

Our bodies are no different. As per Hatha Yoga and Swara Yoga the same principles have been embedded in human body as well. Hatha Yoga refers to Sun principle in our body as Pingala and Moon principle as Ida. These are the two main Nadis in our energy body that are connected to our nostrils. The right nostril breathing represents the Sun activity and left one the Moon activity. It is interesting fact that only one nostril is dominant at given point in time. Further there is an automated switching of nostrils happening at definite interval of the time through the day and night.

As per Swara Vigyaan if this auto-switching of nostrils is not happening then our body-mind complex is not in proper shape. Taking this principle in account the system of Yoga proposes that we should engage in certain discipline that helps us maintain the balance of sympathetic (Sun) and parasympathetic (Moon) aspects in our body.

The Practices –

Deep Breathing – Also known as Yogic breathing is a great way to recharge our body with lots of prana. It oxygenates our cellular structure and strengthens our body immunity. For this one must go out in the open and do deep breathing where there is fresh air and lots of oxygen. We are able to recharge our cellular structure with this simple discipline and it augments out capacity to fight with bacterial and viral attacks.

Nadishodhan – Is the practice that is common to both the system of Yoga and Tantra. Anyone who wants to enhance health and immunity must learn and practice NadiShodhan. If due to lock-down situation you are unable to learn this practice from a qualified teacher then you can join any Free Workshops on NadiShodhan by our qualified Yoga Teachers ONLINE.

|| Click the IMAGE to stay informed about our upcoming FREE Programmes ||

The benefits of this simple breathing technique, NadiShodhan are immense. In fact as per scriptures if one includes only this one practice in one’s daily routine then he is assured of freedom from all mental and physical issues. Nadishodhan promotes TOTAL HEALTH!

If you are suffering from any heart conditions especially high blood pressure then you should not do Nadishodhan Pranayama. For all such people and those who are not having sufficient lung capacity another variation is recommended. This is called Anulom-Vilom Pranayama. We shall discuss about this simpler version of Nadishodhan in the tools of Yoga for immunity. The technique is very simple and You can learn Anulom-Vilom Pranayama by yourself!

ELEMENTS OF IMMUNITY
CREATING THE TATTVIC BALANCE

As per ancient wisdom the human body is constituted by the 5 Tattvas – Earth, Water, Fire, Air, and Ether. The cosmic energy becomes available to us through these carriers of energies, The Five Great Elements or The Panch-Mahabhutas. Ancient rishis recommend a perfect balance of Tattvic Energies in our body because the energies of these Tattvas govern our physical and mental strength, our emotional quotient, cognitive and action faculties. At the cellular level of body, the Immunity is the net result of the ideal balance among these 5 Tattvas.

As per Tattva Shakti Vigyaan, a Tantric discipline there are various practices to achieve this desired Bhoota-Shakti Saamya and Bhoota-Shuddhi. Many of these are complex and requires one to learn them from a Teacher however there are many simpler ways to connect with Tattvic Energies to bring about health and healing. Following practices can be done by the uninitiated for bringing Tattvic strength and balance.

The Tantra Practices for Health and Immunity –

CONNECTING WITH TATTVAS
The Following practices allows us to connect with gross energies of the 5 Tattvas!

Connect with Earth – It has been observed even by modern researchers that people who are connected to Earth or engaged in activities like farming etc. have stronger immunity. In fact Earth Element is directly connected with Mooladhara Chakra or the root chakra that is responsible for survival mechanism. To activate this energy centre one must walk on earth barefoot for minimum of 30 minutes each day. This practice has been found to be helping in giving people a sense of security and abundance apart from its magical effects in cure and control pain and issues related to lower limbs and lower back.

Ignite your Fire – Fire Element is most important from the perspective of immunity, vitality, digestion and assimilation of digested food. By connecting to the Sun energies we can rekindle the diminishing fire in our body. Sun-gazing and Sun Bath are the best practices. Performing Homa, watching candle/deepam for 5-10 minutes a day does the magic. It balances the Fire element in our body and being.

Replenish the Water- The water that we drink must be well-rested. It should be taken with an attitude of gratitude. The most important properties Water has is that it listens to our callings and responds. So while we hold a glass of water in our hands if we just make a request or prayer asking it to heal, energize and balance itself in our body it does so!

Recharge the Air & Space within- The practice of deep breathing, Nadishodhan and Anulom Vilom pranayamas are the best ways to connect with and bring out the balance of the Vayu Tattva in our body. Keeping our attention on our breath during these practices creates creates a meditative experience that balances the Akasha Tattva or Ether element in us.

Practices for the people ‘Initiated’ in Tantra – There are many other powerful practices that Tantra offers for rejuvenation and holistic healing by harnessing the power of Tattvas such as Tattva Dharana Kriya, Panch-Mahabhoota Shakti Kriya, 5D Shakti Healing etc. however these should be done only by those who are trained in the practices by a Teacher and are following the Tantric system.

HAND GESTURES FROM TANTRA
MUDRAS FOR HEALTH, HEALING AND IMMUNITY

The Tantra has yet another tool namely Mudra. Many Tantric worships use special Mudras to invoke, attract, assimilate and disperse desired Energies. A Mudra is a special hand gestures that creates specialized Energy Grids by energizing intended Tattvas, chakras and Nadis within our body. Every Mudra is used at special occasion and some also finds their usage in healing through energy. This Energy can be assimilated by the practitioner or can also be directed to someone else using the power of intention and special mantra chants.

We are practicing and using Mudras with people for their mental and physical conditions from last 20 years. From our experience we found that mudras are so very effective in dealing with issues of immunity, innumerable chronic physical conditions, mental anxiety and stress. Let us introduce you to few mudras that you use to rejuvenate your body and immune system.

POWERFUL HAND MUDRAS FOR PRACTICE-

Prana Mudra 
is synonymous with energy and health. Regular practice of this mudra increases the body-resistance to diseases and removes lack of energy thus tiredness. It is so effective in creating energy that if due to lack of food or fasting you are getting hunger pangs just do it for 10-15 minutes. It works magic. One more important effect is good sound sleep, that is very necessary to keep your immunity in shape.

Kaleshwar Mudra – Is powerful enough to drive away your ill traits. It helps in centering the energies as per your intention so it can be used to attend a sluggish organ in the body by directing our attention towards that while keeping this mudra. Another reason I am including this mudra in today’s time is this; Many people who are addicted to smoking, alcohol, caffeine or any other substance etc. may not get the supply of these things due to lock down (smiles) If they don’t have a tool or technique to control their urge it will become a nightmare for them. Kaleshwar Mudra, apart from setting the energy in motion within the body is a magic cure for dealing with addictions. Doing this for 10 – 15 minutes each time is enough.

Uttarabodhi Mudra – Is easy to form. First clasp both the hands with fingers interlocked. Keeping all other fingers locked take out both the index fingers – point outward, both the thumbs pointed inward; pressing against each other. Now we somewhat understand the working of New Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the distress it creates in the respiratory system. Most of people die because of their lungs not being able to absorb sufficient oxygen. This Mudra should help us greatly as this Mudra charges your two very important vital organs, the lungs and the heart. It does so by enhancing the inhalation capacity.

Vyana Mudra – Improves metabolism, digestive fire and helps in treating loose motions. By balancing Vyan Vayu it regulates and corrects blood pressure, ensures proper blood circulation to all parts of body.

Mudras are extremely effective if done in proper environment and with right kind of attitude. Each of these Mudras should be done for a minimum of 15 minutes each day for optimal benefit. Some teachers suggest that the efficacy of mudra does not diminish even if we do it while watching TV or such things but in my opinion this is not correct way. The best way to do a mudra is when we are sitting calmly rather than mentally occupied as our thoughts and emotions are the movers and shakers of energies so when your mind is being fed with the excitement while practicing mudras it will definitely hinder with it’s alchemy.

So keep the above important point in mind when you utilize the power of Mudras for increasing your health and immunity.

|| ATHA YOGAANUSHAASANAM ||
BEING ‘IMMUNENERGETIC ‘ THROUGH YOGIC TOOLS

Since time immemorial Indian rishis and Yogis were using this path to realize the highest potentials hidden in human body. There is something very special and unique about Yoga. It’s approach is non-religious and scientific. It believes in development of human psyche through the practice of discipline on all the levels. It postulates that with persistent efforts and continuous practice every human being can train himself to be healthy and bring out the best in him. Some people, on the basis of religious grounds rejected the methods of Yoga however all such logic were found to be skewed and rooted in prejudice. Yoga finally got its due. The Yogic Lifestyle and tools of Yoga have gotten much broader acceptance ever since in 2014 the world forum agreed to devote 1 day in a year in the name of Yoga. The June 21st of every year since 2015, most of the countries participate in the celebration of The World Yoga Day!

While Yoga should be understood to be as a system for ‘Self-Discovery’ rather than a system for health however vibrant health, cheerful disposition, improved longevity and sound immunity are definitely the positive side effects of the Yogic practices. Let me place few tools for you to adopt for better health and especially the improved immunity.

The Yoga Practices for Health and Immunity –

WORKING THROUGH THE BODY, ON THE BODY
Asana Practices in Yoga
– Body postures or Asanas are specially designed to dissolve the gross blockages and thus allow abundant prana to be available to different limbs and organs. In fact different organs and body parts are dominant in specific Tattvas and due to our careless, unaware and cozy living throughout the day this Tattvic Balance goes haywire. So, at Tattvic level the practice of Asanas restores the balance of Tattvas in our body.

The immunity in our body is linked with the Fire Element or Agni Tattva. The Asanas that ignite, restore and balance the correct amount of fire element in our body are found to be directly useful to improve our body immunity. The recommended Asanas therefore are the following.

Surya Namaskar (minimum of 3 rounds), Trikonasana, Supta-Vajrasana or/and Matsyendrasana (1 minute each)

|| Some poses of Surya Namaskar ||

With the experience of years of we can tell you that these asanas will work magic for you. These are carefully chosen Asanas specifically to increase the flow of Prana (Surya Namaskar does that) in the body and also the improvement of Agni Tattva (other three Asanas are aimed at this) in your body.

To be able to maximize the benefits from any Asana you should do these Asanas in slow pace, keep the posture firm but relaxed and pay proper attention to your breathing. Never try to force yourself into any Asana. Go easy on your body.

MAGIC OF BREATH AT WORK
Yogic breathing  Are the easiest, fit for all age group and even for the people with medical conditions. If you don’t understand what it is, the Yogic Breathing simply means deep breathing using the full lung capacity. It means practice of deep breathing however the effectiveness of this depends on the quality of exhale. If you exhale fully then only you will be able to inhale deeply. While doing Yogic Breathing simple ensure you don’t keep any residual air in your lungs while exhalation. It is to be done slowly, effortlessly without making noise of breathing. It improves the prana flow in the body and improves assimilation of food in the body. 

Anulom-Vilom Pranayama – Is a very effective in creating the desired balance in our Immunity response. A hyper immune response is not what we wish to achieve. Our Immune system should trigger a controlled, optimum and discriminated fight against the suspected or induced virus/microbial attack. In fact we have seen that in some people’s body the coronavirus triggers an uncontrolled (hyper) immune response which is the primary reason for the complications. You can learn how to do Anulom-Vilom Pranayama. Observe the key precautions, follow the instructions and do this practice regularly to keep yourself fit.

Antar-Kumbhaka- is about taking a deep breath and holding it comfortably for some duration as per one’s capacity. After that you slowly exhale the air and repeat the process. This particular practice, though without being linked with Yoga, has been successfully utilized by many people who unfortunately got the corona virus infection. They found it to be helping in their  #FightAgainstCoronavirus. Primarily this practice opens up clogged chambers of the lungs and also improves one’s breathing capacity. Since this particular virus COVID-19 creates a respiratory distress lung capacity and its health is vital in dealing with it if one accidentally gets the infection.

In fact some health experts have suggested that we should monitor our breath holding time each day to make sure we aren’t infected. Self assessment becomes crucial because of the peculiar characteristic of this virus that it can affect us and we can stay asymptomatic or with very mild symptoms.

STRESS AND IMMUNITY
CALMING THE MIND FOR BETTER HEALTH

Of course you might be stressed. So many reasons can be sited – Mobility Impacted, Personal Space missing, Boredom, Fear of uncertainty, Anxiety of possible infection, Extra caution and alertness at every step… but the effects of stress on the immune system is far deeper. It is not straightforward rather complex and differs for acute (time-limited) stress, chronic stress, mild stress, and severe stress. In fact acute stress can  improve your immune function in the short-term, but as times passes and if the stress continues it becomes chronic stress. Chronic stress can suppress your Immune System, making you more susceptible to infections like cold, flu, and many others.

It is so very important to keep our stress under check. If we do not do so we may find suffering from autoimmune diseases. These autoimmune diseases cause inflammation in various organs, joints and skin etc. The inflammatory response is a saving mechanism of  immune system but if our immune system is already feeling threatened without our bodies being invaded by bacteria, viruses, or parasites, then the immune system will lack in its response when it is needed the most. It will not be able to deploy the cells, proteins, and tissues, including the brain, to attack these foreign invaders. So what do we do?

PRACTICES TO CALM THE MIND FROM TANTRA-YOGA –

WATCH YOUR BREATH is a very common instruction in meditation schools. This meditative practice that finds mention in Tantric scriptures. In fact Lord Buddha utilized this one practice to give enlightenment to thousands of his disciples. In his system it is called Vipassana. Vipassana or watching the breath is not invented by Buddha. If you get to read a famous Tantric Scripture – Vigyan Bhairava Tantra in which there are 112 Dharanas (there is no word like dhyan in Tantra, instead we use the word dharana) you will notice it is among the first few techniques. Anyways, that is not the point. It is important for us to find a suitable method to keep our mind off it’s monkey-business for a period of 20-25 minutes. Some people use the time of Nadi-Shodhan or Anulom Vilom for keeping their mind engaged in the flow of breath. Do what you like… any method will do.

BREATH COORDINATED ASANAS are great tools in your hands for calming the mind. In theory Asana should be done with breath coordination and complete awareness however most Yoga practitioners fail in following this advice. You can choose a few asanas as per your requirement and engage in those with your 100% awareness. It will relax your body and calm the mind.

YOGA NIDRA – This Guided, progressive, and whole body relaxation technique is so addictive once you get the taste of it. It is enjoyable and deeply relaxes the body and mind so much so that most of the people are found snoring while they engage in this process. No surprise, if it is also called Yogic Sleep by many. There are many ONLINE resources that you can use to practice this. Since it offers a deep tissue level relaxation to the body on the level of physical body and also aligns the energy flow by correcting emotional state it is very effective in restoring health and immunity.

If you are a Tattva Shakti Vigyaan practitioner and already practicing Sanjeevani Vidya Kriya then there is no need to take up this practice separately as the Kriya is anyways followed by a Yoga-Nidra session.

HA HA HA HA.. Helps! As such smile and laughter are of great therapeutic value. These are naturally available and most effective ways to release stress. Smile and laughter opens up your chest area and facial muscles that prove effective to enhance the Vagal Activity, reducing the cortisol levels in our body. The reduction in cortisol (a stress hormone), in turn, offers positive effects such as enhanced immune function and a lower prematurity rate.

So next time you listen to a joke, don’t ever tell ‘I already know it’ rather grab this opportunity to give your diaphragm some work. Laugh for the sake of it. Go out welcome the rising Sun with a sunny smile on your face. It helps your immunity!

IMMUNITY THROUGH WORDS
AFFIRMATIONS AND MANTRAS FOR BETTER HEALTH

If you are a non-believer then You are your own God. If you believe in a personal God then also as per ancient vedic/tantric wisdom that declares Aham Brahmaasmi! or “Shivoham!” you are God incarnate! In either case your own spoken words have power of consciousness behind them. You have the power to bless and curse. They say, ‘Your conviction and trust makes all the difference.‘ but in my view even mindless repetition of words also impacts state of your health. So use your faculty of speech mindfully.. use positive language, comforting words, encouraging phrases to show the possibility of a solution.

Best Practices using the power of Speech –

Affirmations – are ideally the expressions rooted in your conviction. They work that way only. So say all good things repeatedly.

  1. I am healthy and getting healthier every day!
  2. I radiate health.
  3. I know, I have a great immune system.
  4. My body is strong and it shall stay strong in all situations.
  5. My body listens to my commands.
  6. I know, I can heal myself!
  7. I am happy, energetic and peaceful.
  8. I care for my body and my body cares for me!
  9. My sleep is deep and refreshing.
  10. Today is a great day!

Believe in what you say.. and Say aloud what you have convinced yourself to believe!

Mantras from Ancient Scriptures – are so very powerful but for those who have an open mind to experiment with the Mantras. The mantras are special combination of different syllables that hit our energy centers, active chakras and improve our emotional state. There have been researches on the mantras that have proved beyond any doubts that they work. Few mantras that can bring miraculous changes in state of your health and capacity to fight the diseases.

There are mantras that require one to be initiated whereas there are others that do not demand a qualification. In tantra tradition for the ones who are not initiated for Durga Saptshati can derive the benefit of the same through chanting of Durga Saptshloki.

The whole Saptshloki can be chanted everyday for holistic protection and growth however if one is seeking relief from disease the following Shloka should be chanted 21 times each day by the person himself or if he is unable to do so then someone else can chant for him.

rogaan-asheshaan-apahansi-tushtaa
rushtaa-tu-kaamaan-sakalaan-abheeshtaan,
tvaam-aashritaanaam na vipannaraanaam
tvaam-aashritaa-hyaa-shrayataam-prayaanti||

This mantra invokes the Goddess Durga for health, healing and abundance. The energies of Goddess respond to our earnest callings.

Mahamrityunjay Mantra – This mantra is ultimate saviour in case someone is in deep suffering due to a disease. It bestows the grace of Lord upon the intended recipient as per one’s sanchit karmic accounts.

Mahaamrityunjay Mantra pronunciation for non-Hindi people is given below.

Aum Tryambakam Yajaamahe Sugandhim PushtiVardhanam|
Urvaarukamiva Bandhanaan Mrityor Muksheeya Maamritaat||

Mostly this mantra is chanted as a last resort to save one’s life but it can be done daily to improve health and vitality. Recommended number is 108 times each day.

STAY HOPEFULTHIS TOO SHALL PASS
STAY AWARE AND TAKE GOOD CARE OF YOURSELF

You need not panic. Almost 97 % of people recover from coronavirus infections. There have been cases where people aged 99 or even 106 years have fought this deadly virus successfully. These instances prove that if we keep ourselves positive and in good shape we can overcome any challenge.

Corona or no Corona, keeping ourselves fit is our prime responsibility. The health is our real wealth. In these times I recollect a saying that my first Guru, my beloved father Pandit Shri Murli Dhar Mishr ji used to quote in his conversations..

पहला सुख निरोगी काया,
दूसरा सुख हो घर में माया,
तीसरे सुख में सारा संसार समाया | 

The highest joy is a healthy body,
The next is having capacity to live a prosperous life,
Then comes everything else..

How so relevant! In fact each one of us should have been much more careful about our health in the first place. Why do we need to wait for the nature to send us a Coronavirus only to remind us of our duties towards our own self.

Anyways, you hold your post by taking precautions, maintain social distancing, follow hygiene guidelines, keep cleanliness and keep yourself fit. In the meantime your brethren, and friends in the scientific & medical fraternity are already on the run to find a cure, a vaccine, a better treatment regime. I am hopeful and pray that they find success soon only to prove the superiority of human will and resolve.

It’s not too long before you see a silver lining in the darkness of hopelessness.

Join us in the prayer..

Shivoham!

With Ma Shakti Devpriya
Acharya Agyaatadarshan Anand Nath

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Neti Kriya in the times of Coronavirus : Life saving Tips!

Extremely critical information for all Yoga Kriya lovers.. in the times of this pandemic. Must read!

Tattva Shakti Vigyaan

The world is about to come to an end. Everything is gloomy. I do not think I will make it to another day. I feel listless, distraught and diseased. I am unable to concentrate and do anything worthwhile. I choke for air and feel like my system is about to shut down.
I speak from experience.
I am not talking of an apocalypse or an impending end. Neither I am suffering from coronavirus symptoms. I am talking about being down with Common Cold! Common cold is one of the few diseases which causes little harm but gives us a gloom and distress like the sky is about to fall!
Sneeze season is on. A heady mix of cold, pollen, pollution, temperature variation, breathing recycled air in a/c environs and low immunity ensure we fall prey to common cold or flu. Many with kaphaconstitution of their bodies are particularly…

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How to Boost Immunity: Secrets from Yoga and Ayurveda! (2 of 3)

Before we engage in various Yogic processes that help boost our health and immunity let us further deepen our understanding of the immunity as per Ayurveda and modern medicine. Also, we need to be aware of what types of food we must consume to keep a healthy body.

As per Ayurvedic principle, this physical body – the Annamaya Kosha is created by the food we eat. The food goes through its journey from one phase to another. These phases through which the food pass and becomes a constituent of body are know as dhatu. The higher Immunity is the result of unhindered production and the flow of these Dhatus in our body. The flow of food and its journey through the Dhatu phases is as below –

As you can see, gross Dhatus are 7 in number. As a rule, the quantity of each successive dhatu is only a small fraction (approximately 10%) of the previous one and its quality depends on the quality of its predecessor. Apart from these seven there are two more Dhatus that are subtle – 8. Ojas and 9. Tejas. Ojas is basically the power of endurance. It is the body’s ability (bala) to sustain us through all forms of distresses & exertions, both physical and mental. It depends on the sum total quality and quantity of all the seven dhatus. Here, the Ojas is what we can directly relate to our immunity.

Further, Tejas is that activated state of Virya/Shukra where it is transformed into inner fire, passion and is directly linked to spiritual prowess & will power. In yoga and tantra, Tejas is needed for us to be able to perform transformative spiritual practices.

Enough of theoretical wisdom. Let’s get practical and find out how we can improve our Immunity based on this principle.

NUTRITIOUS RASA DHATU MEANS BETTER HEALTH

So, we have seen that rasa is our first dhatu.  This ‘Rasa’ can be roughly said to be the (assimilated) juices (generated after the process of digestion) of the food intake. This is the usable raw material that our body will use to regenerate itself. It is quite evident that the quality and quantity of rasa depend on two factors – a. food intake and b. state of our digestive system. Therefore the food we eat is of paramount importance because if we do not eat good quality, easily digestible, rich, wholesome food we will be deprived of the first dhatu itself. Further as per Ayurveda, the dominant place of Rasa Dhatu is heart. The heart is the organ that circulates and distributes Rasa to the body where it is utilized by different organs. So if we eat greasy, fatty food and do not exercise properly then this fat contained in assimilated rasa will accumulate around heart, causing coronary heart diseases. So, a general advice – we can’t keep a healthy body just by eating healthy food but have to maintain a balance between food intake and physical labour.

A lot researches have been done by modern medicine-scientists, identifying chemicals and investigating the chemical processes that happen in human body for its survival against bacterial and viral invasions. These modern studies are equally important and therefore should not be ignored. Therefore I would rather like to improve our understanding about human immunity by taking clues from these new studies as well.

MODERN PERSPECTIVE
VITAMINS, ANTIOXIDANTS & FATTY ACIDS

In brief, as per modern medicine there are few essential components that are needed to be present in balanced quantities to keep our immunity functioning well. They postulate that Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Carotenoids (gets converted into Vitamin A), Zinc, and Omega-3 Fatty acids as these fatty acids suppress the inflammation and keep a check on immune response from getting overactive. Keeping these facts in mind, following are the suggested inclusions in your daily diet just to keep your immune system.

  1. Citrus Fruits, Amla (Indian Gooseberry), Kiwi Fruit, Broccoli, Red/Green Peppers, Strawberry. Alternatively you can have Chyavanprash after breakfast and dinner.
  2. Sunsoaked mushrooms and Sun Bathing, The best way to get the specific D3, is by active sunbathing regularly.
  3. Almonds, Hazelnuts, Peanut butter, Sunflower seeds. Almonds are the best but the activation/digestion of specific proteins (in human body) happens when these are soaked in water for minimum of 6 hrs prior to consumption. So there’s no point chewing dry or roasted almonds. Always soak them overnight, remove the skin and then consume for best nutrition.
  4. Cashew, Chickpeas, raisin bran. The daily dose of zinc in body can be met if we use certain brass utensils for cooking the food. Instead, most of the households use pressure cooking and thus are ingesting excessive Aluminium, it is not good for the digestive system. It is the main reason for the people suffering from IBS, colitis, constipation etc.
  5. Papaya, Mango, Sweet Potato, Carrot, Apricot. These are going to supply you the enough of vitamin A. In general you can have small portion of either of the above. Papaya, carrot, sweet potato, dried apricot are available almost throughout the year.

Practitioner of modern medicine will tell you that one should plan to include at least 1 item from all the above 5 groups of food spread over one’s 3 or 4 meals. They say, these are essential ingredients just to keep your immune system functional and working.

AYURVEDIC PERSPECTIVE
BALANCE OF TATTVAS IN YOUR PLATE = VIBRANT HEALTH

Ayurvedic system gives rather a very interesting (probably simple to adopt) suggestion to maintain our health and immunity. It’s definition of wholesome, balanced and nourishing meal is based on the taste of food (edible items including herbs). There are 6 basic tastes (shadarasas) – Madhur, Katu, Tikt, Kashaya, Amla, Lavan.  I will not debate here about the discovery of a new taste called Umami. Herbs or foods ignite or suppress (barring few exceptions) certain doshas in our body in accordance of these basic tastes. This principle of balancing the portions of different tastes in our plate in maintenance of our health and immunity may sound ridiculous but it is not!

As per Vedic/Tantric philosophy our existence is expressed through the 5 sheaths or covering called koshas. This physical body through which we interact with and experience this physical world is called Annamaya Kosha or the sheath made up of 5 Tattvas. As per ancient Tantric Shaivism this whole visible, tangible creation (world as well as this body) belongs to ‘Panchikrita Tattvas’. Human body has a predefined Tattvic composition and thus maintaining that critical balance of Tattvas would keep it in perfectly healthy state.

A treatise on Ayurveda, Ashtangahridayam mentions that out of these 6 basic tastes (rasas)- maximum 63 types of tastes (by combining these basic tastes) can be prepared and therefore we can have maximum of 63 categories of acquired ailments/diseases caused by imbalance of food intake. So, as per your current prakriti of body and season (change of season or Ritu-Sandhi requires special care) you should choose your food however as a rule keeping a balance of rasa (inclusion of items belonging to all 6 types of tastes) in the food shall ensure your vibrant health.

From the table above you can understand how different tastes (rasas) are primary source of different elements in our body. In fact the taste of any food item or herb is attributed to its Tattvic Composition, and is primarily determined by the ‘Dominant Elements’ presented in it. So if we keep a balance of taste in our plate we will ensure supply of all the 5 elements in our body. How so easy!

RASAYANA
AYURVEDIC THERAPY FOR INCREASED VITALITY

Rasayan Chikitsa, aims at rejuvenation. Restoration of weakened functions and strengthening of existing health. Rejuvenation literally means regaining youthfulness. This therapy enhances one’s energy, immunity and also helps cure diseases. In a healthy individual it increases mental and physical strength. Rasayanas are those herbs or medicinal combinations that keep our immune system in perfect shape.

The working of Rasayans is complex and they are said to work on multiple levels and domains at the same time. If put in modern medicine’s language some functions of Rasayan’s are; Antioxidant action, Neuroprotective action, Nutritive etc. but the most relevant action that we need to use in today’s time is Immuno-modulatory action. Although immunity as per Ayurveda is sum total of many strengths (balas) but in view of modern medicine this immuno-modulatory function is directly linked to immunity. Whatever, this is an established fact that rasayanas perform this desired function with almost no negative side-effects on human body. Even if some rasayan does not suit to the body prakriti its usage can be discontinued without fearing of any persistent negative symptoms. Rasayans are to be taken only under the supervision of a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner however there are some; Such as Triphala, Chyavanprash or Shilajit, that can be taken (in appropriate quantity) without much risks involved. Similarly there are many herbs that work exactly like complex rasayan.

  • Tulsi
  • Turmeric
  • Ginger
  • Garlic
  • Draksha
  • Ashwagandha
  • Yashtimadhu
  • Bala
  • Giloy
  • Shatavari
  • Brahmi
  • Shilajit
  • Triphala*
  • Chyavanprash*     (* means these are prepared and have multiple herbs)

Including these herbs in moderation improves immunity.

STRIVE FOR BLISS
AYURVEDA IS NOT ABOUT MEDICINES ONLY

Ayurveda is unlike modern system of medicine which is disease and treatment centric. It mostly gives us impression that life in human body is the result of some chemical-processes. The system of Ayurveda can be best defined as a consciousness based science for health and healing. It takes human life as a function of consciousness. It believes when we are in tune with nature’s positive vibrations we are capable of receiving receiving the gift of ‘life-force’.

So it says that if you want to feel good and healthy stay in positive state of mind and be surrounded by nature’s positive vibrations. Connect with Tattvas, gain control on your senses and mind, connect with people around you, see value in giving, being of use to this world rather than continuous craving to accumulate. In a nutshell, one who is spiritually engaged is more capable of radiating joy and vitality. From the point of view of Ayurveda, “Perfect health at all levels of existence is simply the expression of Enlightenment”. The unhindered bliss is obtained when we recognize a purpose in our living and not crave for life only for the sake of living.

It means Ayurveda is not about medicine, it is a way of life. It’s principles are about how we can work upon our own doshas and coexist with nature and people around us without spreading any negativity and disturbance. A healthy life is that, which is lived in harmony with our own inherent nature and everything around us. Taittiriya Upanishad tells how. It says..

Aum Saha Nau- Avatu |
Saha Nau Bhunaktu |
Saha Viryam Karava Vahaai |
Tejasvi Nau-Adhitam- Astu Maa Vidvissavahai |
Aum Shanti Shanti Shantih ||

Let us be together,
Let us nourish ourselves together,
Let us be radiant and vital together,
Let us be radiating truth, radiating the light of life,Never shall we denounce anyone and never entertain negativity.

For now, let me give out some more points from Ayurvedic lifestyle that we must try to inculcate to keep our bodies healthy and our immune system intact.

1. Always eat the food as soon as it is cooked. It’s better to have cooked food while it is still warm. Cold foods and drinks weaken your digestive fire and thus should be avoided.

2. Begin your day with drinking one or two glasses of warm water.

3. Give your body enough sun exposure. While in Sun, give yourself oil massage (Tail Abhyangam) in the morning with warm oils such as sesame, mustard, olive or sunflower. It strengthens the skin and muscles and nourishes the tissues. If time permits do it daily, if not then at least once a week. Massage enhances a feeling of self-love and wellbeing.

4. Enjoy warming and energizing exercise such as active yoga, walking, hiking, and snowshoeing. These enhance circulation and build strength.

5. Take warm baths in the evening with epsom salts and warming essential oils such as ginger, cardamom, eucalyptus, rosemary, cinnamon or basil..

6. Include warming spices such as cardamom, ginger, cumin, turmeric and cinnamon in your foods. But do it in moderation and as per your prakriti and season.

7. Make sure to get enough sleep and avoid oversleeping.

8. Allow yourself space and time for meditative reflection, inner contemplation practices.

9. The point which I never fall short of emphasizing – Stay happy, keep a smile on your face, help yourself and live to serve others.

We shall cover the yogic ways such as asanasdharanas, mudras, and pranayamas to have sound mental health, excellent immune system and also necessary modifications in thinking to achieve a cheerful disposition in our next discussion.

– Acharya Agyaatadarshan Anand Nath

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