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Friday, October 31, 2014

In defense of Dr. Sarkar

by Seeker

According to the Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna, Girish Ghosh declares that even the feces of Sri Ramakrishna, whom he considered an incarnation, were very pure. To this, Dr. Sarkar replies that he is never bothered by the human feces and it is same to him whatever be its source. With his expertise in medicine, he could truly see it as just a material. We often categorize the objects into "pure" and "impure" and steadfastly hold on to this fictitious dichotomy. We ought to be aware of this demarcation as far as their utility is concerned, but without forgetting the substratum underlying this duality. Sometimes this compartmentalization takes a morbid turn of respecting a reverential person at the cost of hurting an ordinary person. It is also not uncommon amongst devotees to treat someone, who has not followed their own methods of devotion or does not cherish their ideals, as someone who needs to redeemed although this person may be more spiritually elevated than themselves due to his/her having followed a "secular" path sincerely. It could be argued that Dr. Sarkar, through his dedication in material research, had come to some state of equanimity that was perhaps absent in many other devotees, nevertheless he was and will be treated as a "kid" amongst the "adults" for having taken the unconventional path of science to reach that state. An illustration in Sri Ramakrishna's life:

Friday, October 24, 2014

Tasting Which Nothing Else Tastes Better

By Moomookshoo

The inspiration for this poem comes from  the meeting between Swami Vivekananda and Robert G. Ingersoll described on page 186 of the second volume of Complete Works. However, this poem is not a historical account of that meeting. Instead, it describes an imaginary journey of a man from the "orange" world view to the "mango" world view. The title is based on Gita 6.22.

Tasting Which Nothing Else Tastes Better

Once in the olden times,
Somewhere in the Western climes,
There was a very good and learned man,
A very intelligent and "rational" man.
He worshiped "reason" in every season,
Any deviation from reason, for him, was treason!
He was very happy and content with his "world",
Which he thought was very "rational" and "bold".
He thought his world was complete and whole,
Unfortunately,  he left out his very own soul!

Monday, October 20, 2014

A Working Hypothesis from Retreat on Patanjali's Way

by Charlie

I learned an important lesson from Pravrajika Gitaprana's retreat on Patanjali's Way. Up until now I have felt that I needed to have proof of such things as Thakur being an Avatara or meditation leading to God-realization. I have felt that without proof, I could not accept these things. I have never felt comfortable with the idea of faith, or belief without proof.

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Third Twin

By a Wanderer
(A story with fictional characters in real setting) 
We are twin sisters. She loves roaming, and I love eating. Recently, we attended a retreat by a Swami in Rochester. I was promised that the food will be awesome and evening dessert will be the best. We both sisters were attending the classes. However, my mind was always dreaming of the next meal. One evening I couldn't resist the delicious desert and ate more than I should. Next morning, my stomach was bothering. Just to divert my attention from stomach pain, I attended the class. Swami: “We perceive the world with our senses and mind. Senses have limited strength, and the mind is clouded by desires and wants. As I change, the world view changes. Our awareness governs our behavior. Limitations of senses need to be felt penetratingly. Senses cannot take us any further. Following the senses will lead to suffering. God cannot be perceived by senses. God cannot be subject of physical science.”