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Articles from Pre-1998 Issues 

The Vedas & the Vedic Rishi: 
Bhagawaan Gopinath Ji

by Triloki Nath Dhar

Book is the symbol of knowledge and enlightenment. The Vedas are the First Books on Earth and the date of their compilation cannot be determined even approximately. It is the recorded knowledge contained in the Vedas that disseminated throughout the world raising the intellectual level of the mankind as a whole. Since Vedas are the First Books on Earth it is logical to infer that Vedic civilization is the primal civilization which sprouted and flourished in India. Vedic people did not come from a place outside India as some Westerners and many Indians have been preaching during the last century and the present one. There is no solid proof to indicate that the Vedic Aryans infiltrated into India from the north and gradually established their settlements in Afghanistan, the Punjab and the Gangetic Plain.

The Vedas contain references to almost all the branches of modern scientific knowledge. They are hymns recorded in the most scientific language in perfect metres. The Vedas are not "vague incursions into infinity" as Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru has termed them. Being hymns only they couldn't be treatises on different subjects. There is no aspect of knowledge which you will miss in the Vedas. Various references are there to persons of scientific achievements but their works are lost to us. For instance, it is mentioned that Matrishwa obtained fire from water by means of a systematic process. What that process was, we don't know anything about.

As per the Vedas, fire and thermal energy (having Agni Deva as the presiding deity) are indispensable for sustaining life and global civilization. About electricity it is stated:

It is electricity which activates rainfall. Through it oceans are under currents. Through it directions are awake. Through it the world is animated with life. (Rig Veda 2/43)

It is indicated that heat can manifest as electricity and vice versa.

The Vedas declare that there is One and only One Reality and the wise describe that one in innumerable ways (Rig Ved 2/43)

This fact is stressed at another place by an interrogative riddle:

Is that unborn who sustains the six worlds only One? (Rig Ved 2/43)

About jeeva we have:

Who saw the one who took the first birth. That skeletonless adopted the skeletal one. Life-force and blood (protoplasm etc.) arose from the Earth but where from did Atma come. (Rig Ved 2/43)

Jeeva is immortal but the body is perishable. People know the body but concerning Jeeva they are floundering in confusion. (Rig Ved 2/43)

In this connection one is reminded of Thoreou's words: "The Light that puts our eyes out is darkness to us:". And about the mind the Vedic sage asks:

Where from did mind, capable of divine conduct, arise? (RigVed 2/43)

According to the Veda, all immanent, self- existent Lord is Vishnu. And the Vedic utterance says:

Vishnu encompasses the entire creation; Protector of all; Him no one can deceive; His will it is that makes natural laws inviolable; He protects Indra, Mitra. (Rig Ved. 1/22)

According to the Veda this world did not come into existence by a single act of creation but through evolutionary Yagya guided by the power and intelligence of gods amongst whom Indra is supreme. It is Indra's power and intelligent guidance which has brought forth orderly world out of chaos. His power made the first clouds to shower rain and free Water (which is at root of life) out of the clutches of Demon Vrita. His power made rivers flow along a proper course.

What is Yagya?

Actions, reactions, and interactions of matter with matter, of mind with matter (horological, spatial and numerical), of astral with material, constitute Yagya.

And the Veda says:

Yagya is the navel of the Universe!

Yagya altar is the Earth's bound.

The propelling force of Yagya is due to the will of the Supreme Indefinable Being.

About Indra and Agni we may quote a richa from Rig Veda:

O! Great Indra and Agni: protectors of societies. Render eaters of humankind issueless. Awaken to give us refuge for Truth; for performance of Yagya. ( Rig Ved 1/21)

Agni, transporter of oblations (offered to gods); Inspirer of effort for attaining true knowledge. Accept our Yagya alongwith immortal and famed gods! (Rig Ved l/l)

About Sun god the Vedic utterance is:

All beings (mortal and astral) and all the worlds are in the lap of the Sun. (Rig Ved l/22)

Beautiful, deeply vibrant, animated, filling space with light...

Where does this Sun reside and in which ether (aakash) do his rays sustain. Who can say all this? (Rig Ved l/35)

Sun, Agni, and Soma are considered as inanimate by the modern. However, yogis are blessed with the vision of Sun god and other gods with their eyes open. This Sun god is the Master of the effulgent orb which everyday rises in the east. This orb of the Sun is 12,00,000 times bigger than earth and sustains all biological and physical and chemical processes on Earth. Sun god is all knowing and Soul of Beings.

It is indicated in the Veda that Indra is the lord of the mind and coordinates the senses. His power is explained by a very simple but wonderful example.

We know, human hand is one of the greatest wonders of Nature. Enquire its importance from a painter, a graphist, an artist, cartoonist, a musician, a surgeon, a barber, a typist, a computerist, or a technician. In this connection, to explain the power of Indra, the Vedic verse states:

Always in comradeship Fingers perform innumerable tasks. All these sisters moving like housewives (in a household) perform the service of Indra. (Rig Ved 1/62)

And for understanding general meaning of Yagya we may quote following verses of Bhagvad Geeta which have been misinterpreted by most of the commentators:

<verses>

(Bhagvad Geeta 3/14)

Food grains sustain living beings; rain makes food-grains to grow; Yagya causes rain; Karma brings forth Yagya.

<verses>

(Bhagvad Geeta 3/15)

Karma (inherent capability for doing work) emanates from Brahma (immanent God); Brahma is the manifestation of the Supreme Indefinable Being. In this way all pervading Supreme Reality is ever involved in Yagya.

In the verses above Karma needs to be understood in the context of rain formation. In this connection it may not be amiss to add that rain formation occurs every time around this globe whether men perform Yagya according to the Vedic prescription or not.

The thermal energy from the Sun stirs up molecules of water over seas, oceans, lakes and rivers causing vaporisation and formation of clouds. The clouds, in the higher reaches of the atmosphere, undergo condensation resulting in showers or a downpour. A cycle of changes is effected and the end product is the same and constitutes physical change. In a cycle involving chemical change the end product or intermediate products are different. Such type of cycles ever occurring in the biosphere of the Earth for supporting life are nitrogen-cycle and photosynthesis. All these cycles constitute Yagya and the propelling force of Yagya is karma. In all these cycles thermal energy plays a crucial role. That is why the presiding deity of thermal energy, Agni Dev, is worshipped throughout in the hymns of the Rig Veda. In the ultimate analysis propelling force of Yagyas is the will of the Supreme Indefinable Being. Therefore, a human being, though endowed with a little of free choice, should ever remain engaged in detached Karma for the good of the entire world. For this reason the Yagyas ordained in the Vedas are to be performed for attuning ourselves with the Devas (Indra, Agni, Varuna, Mitra and so on) of various energies for mutually assisting to evolve a beautiful and harmonious world order free from sin, misery, turmoil, death and destruction. The Devas have laboured for aeons through Yagyas for evolving this wonderful Earth with atmosphere and ionosphere, and animal and vegetable kingdoms. Vedic Rishis exhort us to protect this beautiful globe and build up a truly human civilization.

By following Vedic injunctions India became one nation as early as 4th century B.C. In this connection it is worthwhile to mention that Germany or Italy attained the status of a nation only in 1870 A.D. and the U.S.A. began to breathe as a free nation only in the 18th century. So these nations are just babies in comparison with India. However severe campaigning against the Vedas by Lord Buddha and subsequently by Buddhists resulted in stifling the Ved Vani. The result was disintegration and chaos. But India, through the blessings of Vedic Rishis who, according to Mahatma Gandhi, were greater geniuses than Newton and greater warriors than Wellington, is again emerging as its former self.

Vedic Rishis were spurred by insatiable love for God. They also had insatiable thirst for knowing the truth and understanding reality in totality. For awakening latent powers within they evolved a scientific system of yogic discipline.

However, its may take a whole lifetime for awakening ones yogic powers of comprehension and direct viewing. It takes around 20 years to have a peep into Aakashu through Aagya Chakra by fixing gaze between two eyebrows in the manner prescribed in verse 27 of Chapter 5 of the Bhagvad Geeta. It is for this reason that when Ishwar Swaroop Swami Laxmanji was asked in a radio interview why His Holiness didn't marry and was it because His Holiness was against marriage, pat came the reply, " I am not against marriage but couldn't get leisure for marriage."

I have given a concise background of Vedic culture and knowledge to assist understanding why I consider Bhagawaan Gopi NathJi a Vedic Rishi incarnate for guiding mankind from higher planes.

From his early age BhagawaanJi remained deeply immersed in the love of God. For overcoming distractions induced by mind and matter he adopted a rigorous discipline of sadhna to which he remained attached perpetually even, at times, doing without food and water for days on end like his Guru Shri Shri Swami Zana KakJi Tufchi.

Our BhagawaanJi remained celibate but remained in a household sympathetically attending to the problems of his sisters and other kin. He was always eager to alleviate the sufferings of the people. To the needy and sanyasins he helped with money.

Our Master's dhaarna was mainly in Aagya Chakra (space between two eyebrows) and thus he remained gazing up into Aakasha in which things, past, present and future exist simultaneously. For this reason the Master read thoughts of anybody who approached him and was aware of all mundane happenings in advance. Our sage had compassion for all and malice for none.

Our master was continually engaged in Vedic Yagya. A vedi on which Fire stood enthroned day and night was always before the Master and from time to time he threw oblations (rice and barley or some other Yagya material) into it to the accompaniment of mantras (holy incantations) recited in whispers.

Professor A.N. Dhar has made my mention in his article entitled "Rememhering BhagawaanJi" published in July'95 issue of Patrika regarding some utterance whispered into my ears by BhagawaanJi. I want to narrate the incident myself.

Professor A.N. Dhar and myself were sitting before the Master at his Chandapora abode. I was nearer to the Master. He whispered into my ears. The first part of the utterance I keep to myself.

The second part of the utterance was this:

<verses>

(What have I achieved? My gaze is fixed high up in Aakasha. I have welded everything into oneness) The Master took up some oblation (barley and rice) and threw it into the vedi (receptacle for hawan) adding " " (Obeisance to Aakasha).

Offering oblations to Aakasha through Fire is a significant part of Vedic Yagya.

Our Master was an epitome of humility. In this connection I am reminded of an utterance of Vedic Rishi Deergatama (who, besides being a Rishi, was a language scientist and master of chhandas):

"I don't know what I am. I am foolish and half- mad. Only when a glimpse of knowledge dawns on me am I able to understand the meaning of a sentence. "

Late Pandit Nila Kanth Wali of Ali Kadal, Srinagar, was amongst the great devotees of the Master. He related an incident which throws sufficient light on the social wisdom and humility of Bhagawaan Ji. He said that one day he was sitting before the Master and he felt the call of nature. He went down into the lavatory. He was sitting on the receptacle but there was no water for cleaning privy parts. In half a minute Pt. Nila Kanth found the Master placing a pot of water before him. He felt disconcerted beyond measure. After cleaning himself he went up and lay prostrate before the Master and gradually composed himself.

Great savant late Shankar Pandit held BhagwaanJi in the highest esteem though being elder to the Master by a number of years. Savant Shanker Pandit had suffered an accident which had made some defect in his legs. He could not therefore easily prostrate himself. But whenever he went to have a darshan of BhagawaanJi he invariably prostrated himself before the Master though it entailed a very painful effort.

To conclude this article I might relate a vision I had about two years ago. I was meditating at the dhooni of the Peerkhu Guffa temple, the shrine I hold in high esteem. Late Yogni Radha Devi of Zaindar Mohalla, Srinagar, and BhagawaanJi appeared before me. They appeared on my left-hand side in the same dress they were accustomed to wear. Nothing was communicated. I couldn't decipher the meaning of the vision.
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