Devi recounts the creation of the five basic elements
Devi recounts the creation of the five basic elements
[The Goddess explains the initial impulse of the Self, in its aspect as the Unmanifest or Causal Body, to undertake the creation.]
2.22. This Self, however, by its own power of Maya conjoined with desires, actions, and the like,
Through the influence of prior experience ripening in time in accord with the law of karma,
2.23. And by confounding the primal elements, being desirous to create, begins to bring forth.
The resulting creation, devoid of intelligence, will be further described to you, O Mountain King.
2.24. This extraordinary form of mine which I have mentioned
Is unevolved and unmanifest, yet becomes segmented through the power of Maya.
2.25. All the religious treatises declare it to be the cause of all causes,
The primal substance behind the elements, and as having the form of being, consciousness, bliss.
2.26. It is the condensation of all karma; it is the seat of will, knowledge, and action;
It is expressed in the mantra Hrim; it is the primal principle—so it is said.
The creation of the universe in Advaita is seen as an apparent descent from the pure Brahman or Self down to the gross world of physical matter. The process is described using two rather different but overlapping models. One is an evolutionary model, based on the sequential unfolding of primary elements as outlined in the classical Samkhya. Devi Gita 2.22-42ab presents this evolutionary scheme. The other model is one of reflection, whereby the one supreme reality, like an image in a mirror, appears reflected in Maya as the manifold world. The Devi Gita summarizes the reflection model in 2.42cd-49ab. Common to both models is the generation of the three bodies of the self—Causal, Subtle, and Gross.
The above verses describe the first developmental phase in the evolutionary model, the generation of the Causal Body from which the primary elements arise. This process is here interpreted from a Sakta perspective. When the Goddess unites with her own Maya, the latent powers of will, knowledge, and action become activated, and she becomes the Causal Body and unevolved seed of the universe. This seed, referred to as the primal substance or principle (adi-bhuta, adi-tattva), is roughly equivalent to the primary material element Prakrti, of the Samkhya, from which other elements evolve, except that it is not mere insentient matter. It is a supreme spiritual reality as well, that is, Brahman, indicated by its identification as being, consciousness, bliss. And from the Sakta-Tantric perspective, it is also identified with the primary sonic reverberation, Hrim, seed syllable of Bhuvanesvari and source of all manifest creation...
[The Goddess recounts the creation of the five basic elements, the subsequent fivefold generative process known as Pancikarana, and the compounding of the remaining two bodies—Subtle and Gross—of the Self.]
2.27. Out of the primal substance arose ether, endowed with the subtle quality of sound.
Then arose air, characterized by the quality of touch, followed by fire, characterized by visible form.
2.28. Next arose water, characterized by taste; then earth, characterized by smell.
Ether has the single quality of sound; air is endowed with touch and sound.
2.29. Fire has the qualities of sound, touch, and visible form, according to the wise;
Water has the four qualities of sound, touch, visible form, and taste, so they say.
2.30. Earth has five qualities of sound, touch, visible form, taste, and smell.
From those subtle elements came into being the great cosmic thread which is called the Subtle Body.
2.31. It is proclaimed as all-pervading; this is the Subtle Body of the Self.
The Unmanifest is the Causal Body, which I mentioned earlier.
2.32. In that lies the world seed, from which evolves the Subtle Body.
From that, by the process of fivefold generation, the gross elements,
2.33. Five in number, arise, I shall now describe this process.
Each of those elements previously mentioned shall be divided in half.
2.34. One half-part of each element shall be divided into four, O Mountain.
By joining the undivided half of each element with one of the quartered fractions from each of the other four, each element becomes fivefold.
2.35. And they produce the Cosmic Body, or Gross Body, of the Self.
The Goddess now explains the second and third developmental stages of cosmic evolution, namely, the generation of the Self's Subtle Body from the five subtle or uncompounded elements and the Gross Body from the gross or compounded elements. The three stages of evolution as outlined by the Goddess is the preceding two sections may be amplified and schematized as follows:
I. Goddess (Self) → Maya + Will-Knowledge-Action → World Seed or Causal Body
II. World Seed → The Uncompounded Elements:
sound → ether }
sound+touch → air }
sound+touch+form → fire } → Subtle Body
sound+touch+form+taste → water }
sound+touch+form+taste+smell → earth }
III. The Uncompounded Elements + Quintuplication → Gross Elements → Gross Body
C. MacKenzie Brown, The Devi Gita: The Song of the Goddess
State University of New York Press (September 1998) pp. 95-99
Shive sarvartha sadhike,
Sharanye tryambake Gauri,
Salutations to Devi Narayani, who is blessed with every felicity,
Filled with auspiciousness, able to accomplish everything,
Who is the protectress, the three-eyed Gauri.
The Sanskrit word pra means "exalted," "superior," or "excellent," and the word kriti means "creation." So the Divine Mother is known as Mula Prakriti, since she is the supreme creator of the world. Prakriti is the eternal matrix from which all the components of reality have sprung. She is the point in the center of the ocean of energy that is the ultimate source of all the energetic fields that Western science knows, like gravity, the electromagnetic field, and so on. Tantric philosophy calls this point the Divine Mother, Devi Prakriti, or Parashakti. She is the very source of the subtle dimensions of reality that our physical senses can never perceive.
All creation is made up of combinations and permutations of the three gunas, or essential qualities of Prakriti: sattva, rajas, and tamas. Her name correlates directly to these qualities, with pra denoting sattva, kri denoting rajas, and ti denoting tamas. These gunas are found in all aspects of creation; they are the qualitative building blocks of creation. Without them the universe and its inhabitants would have no qualities. Tamas has the ability to distort reality, rajas to veil reality, and sattva to allow it to be seen, though dimly. If we employ the terms used in physics, we can say that tamas is the quality of inertia, rajas of kinesis, and sattva of equilibrium. Tamas, rajas, and sattva correspond to different colors, according to Indian thought. Tamas is black, rajas red, and sattva white. These are the colors of the Divine Mother herself. Kaali is black, Lakshmi red, and Saraswati white.
Prakriti is known as Maha Maya or the great deluder. But her maya, or power of illusion, has two aspects: vidya maya and avidya maya. Vidya maya is the power of the goddess to dispel illusion by illuminating our intellect through knowledge of reality; it is omnipotent and omniscient and is capable of revealing Brahman, which is Prakriti's receptacle. (Remember she is known as Para Brahma Swarupini, or the very form of Brahman.) Avidya maya is the goddess's power to veil, by which she binds the immortal soul to the mortal frame of the body. The three gunas form the very essence of the Divine Mother's avidya maya. Through avidya maya the supreme self is reflected in the individual as the jiva or jivatman-the embodied soul that has forgotten its original, pristine state. The jivatman is said to have three bodies: the gross body (or physical body), the subtle body (consisting of the mind, ego, and intellect), and the causal body (the astral body, which transmigrates to the spiritual plane). Prakriti resides in the subtle body in two different forms as vidya maya and avidya maya.
Avidya maya conceals the supreme, and thus the jivatman experiences all types of sorrows. In actuality the self or inner spirit, the atman, is self-luminous; it is the eternal and blissful fountain of love. Jnana or knowledge is the very nature of the atman. It is the basis of the knowledge of "I am" that every jiva possesses. It is also the source of all love. Though they are in essence nothing but the one supreme self, the jivas thus appear to be many, as each is contained in a moral frame, and they appear to differ from each other due to the different composition of the three gunas in them.
When Himavan, king of the mountains, practiced tapas (meditation) to Maha Devi in order to procure her as his daughter, she appeared to him in her most spectacular form and promised to incarnate as his daughter. After this she proceeded to enlighten him as to her true nature, since he was eager to know her secret essence. This discourse by Devi to Himavan is known as the Devi Gita:
Hear this, O Himavan, by knowing which as jivas will become liberated. Before creation I alone exist?eternal, immutable. My real self is no different from the Para Brahman. In that state I am pure sat (existence), chid (consciousness), samvit (intelligence), and ananda (bliss). At that time I am beyond all attributes or transformations. Maya can be called neither existent nor nonexistent. If it existed eternally, there would be no liberation for the jiva. But if it were not present at all, the practical world would not exist, so it cannot be nonexistent. It can be destroyed with the knowledge of Brahman, so it cannot be called existent either. It is thus my mysterious power of delusion, and it can be overcome only through my grace.
In essence I am nirguna (without qualities), but when I relate myself to avidya maya, I become saguna (endowed with qualities). Then do I become the cause of the universe of names and forms. Thus avidya maya is the cause of this whole creation. From the point of view of the Brahman, there is no maya and no creation. There I am ever pure even though involved in creation, just as the sun`s rays are not defiled by illuminating dirty objects.
When maya unites with chid or consciousness, it becomes the instigating cause of the universe, and when it unites with the five original elements, it becomes the material cause. Avidya maya is what creates the delusion of time, space, and causality, and its characteristic is to hide my true nature, but vidya maya has the ability to liberate the jiva from this illusion.
Infinite and endless creations are threaded on me as pearls on a string. I myself am the lord that resides in the causal and subtle bodies of the jivas. I am Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. I am the sun, moon, and stars. I am the beasts and the birds, the Brahmin and the untouchable. I am the noble soul as well as the hunter and the thief. I am male, female, and hermaphrodite. Wherever there is anything to be seen or heard, I am to be found there, within and without. There is nothing moving or unmoving that can exist without me. This world cannot appear without a substratum, and I am that substratum.
The world is composed of twenty-five tattvas or elements. The first five—akasa (ether), vayu (air), agni (fire), apas (water), and prithvi (earth)—are known as the maha tattvas. When the Para Brahman relates to my avidya maya, the sound hreem, which is my seed sound, is produced. within this sound are contained my three shaktis (powers), known as iccha shakti (the tamasic power of will), jnana shakti (the sattvic power of intelligence), and kriya shakti (the rajasic power of action). These three are absolutely essential for creation. The sound hreem, which denotes me—the Adi Shakti or the first force, who is of the nature of the Brahman and is known as Para Brahma Swarupini—is the twenty-fifth tattva. The rest of the twenty-four tattavs come out of it.
The five qualities of sound, touch, form, taste, and odor are known as tanmatras or subtle elements. The subtle quality of sound is the first tanmatra to manifest from hreem. Then come the subtle elements of touch, form, taste, and odor. Out of the subtle tanmatra of sound is manifested the gross element (tattva) of akasa or ether, the vast field of energy that comprises the universe. Vibrations in the ether cause the movement of air. Thus from akasa appears vayu or air, which has its own subtle feature of touch plus the added quality of sound, which it incorporates from the previous tattva of akasa. Friction caused by the continuous movement of the air principle creates heat, which we call fire. Thus from vayu comes agni or fire, which has its own subtle feature of form plus touch and sound. Condensation of the density of these forces results in the formation of liquid or water. So the next to manifest is apas or water, which has its own subtle quality of taste plus those of form, touch, and sound. The solidified form of all this is earth, so the last to appear is prithvi or earth, which has its basic subtle feature of odor plus the qualities of the other four elements of taste, form, touch, and sound.
What we come to understand from this teaching is that creation proceeds from the subtle to the gross and not the other way around, as we might suppose. The subtle elements (tanmatras) are sound, touch, form, taste, and odor. The gross elements (tattvas) are ether, air, fire, water, and earth, which are all derivatives of the subtle elements. These five gross elements represent the entire gamut of our advanced modern physics. But from the Shakta point of view, physical matter and its fields represent only a tiny fraction of reality.
The five subtle elements all have sattvic, rajasic, and tamasic qualities. The five jnanendriyas or sense organs of knowledge are created out of the sattvic portion of the first five subtle elements. These are the ears, skin, eyes, tongue, and nose, and they are the instruments through which the mind can interact with these elements in the material world.
The karmendriyas or organs of action come from the rajasic portion of the tanmatras. These are the organs of speech, the hands, the feet, the organs of procreation, and the anus or organ of excretion. The subtle element of sound gives rise to space and ends in speech. The subtle element of touch projects as air, which is felt by the skin, especially the skin of the hands. The subtle element of form gives rise to fire, which eventually takes the form of the feet. The subtle element of taste gives rise to water, which in turn produces the organ of procreation. The subtle element of odor produces the earth, which results in the production of the anus.
The five pranas or subtle breaths, which control the involuntary functions of the body, arise from the tamasic portion of the tanmatras. They are the prana vayu, which resides in the heart and controls blood circulation; the apana vayu, which resides in the lower portion of the body and controls the expulsion of waste matter; the samana vayu, which resides in the navel and controls digestion; the udana vayu, which resides in the throat and controls speech; and the vyana vayu, which pervades the whole body.
The sensations of sound, touch, form, taste, and odor are important components of our experience of life. Indian philosophy claims that these elements exist in intangible and subtle forms. They are visible to our inner eye and are the very stuff of our dreams. However, the gross body is not able to experience them.
The seventeen tattvas that make up the jivatman are the five gross elements, the five sense organs that correspond to these, the five pranas (or vital breaths), and the mind and the ego. The linga sarira or subtle body of the jiva is made up of these seventeen tattvas in their subtle forms. Yogis who perfected the ability to leave their physical bodies at will realized that their subtle or astral bodies were able to travel unhampered through space and gross matter. However, they could still hear, touch, smell, and feel in this state, so they concluded that the actual experience of these five sensations lies in the subtle body and not in its physical counterpart.
The mind is a psychic organ that operates through a physical nervous system in this life, allowing it to interact easily with physical matter. While in the physical body it has three functions with separate names. The part that receives information through the jnanendriyas (sense organs) and then processes and stores that information is called manas or mind. The part that relates to a particular individual, giving him a strong sense of individuality, the feeling of "my" and "mine," is called ahamkara or ego. The part that weighs alternatives and makes decisions is called buddhi or intellect.
However, the mind has another aspect that is most subtle, called chitta. It has no equivalent English name, though it is sometimes called the superconscious, which is not quite an accurate translation. It is capable of obtaining data from our inner dimensions of reality and is a storehouse of information. It is in direct contact with akasa, or the energy field or ether of the universe. After death-or, for yogis, during astral travels-the mind separates from the physical organism and operates in the realm of the tanmatras or subtle elements. Then it is pure chitta alone. The chitta is very close to pure spirit (or atman). The difference is that the chitta is still individualized. It carries all the information of the individual and is carried to another body. The atman on the other hand is ever pure. It carries nothing and goes nowhere since it is ever full. It is not born and thus never dies. It is not affected by the changes of the mind-ego, intellect, and chitta.
This brings us to another important point of Indian philosophy. The first three aspects of the mind (manas, buddhi, and ahamkara), which are the basis of our personality, are all material constituents and not spiritual entities. They have their roots in Prakriti or primordial matter and not in the spirit or atman.
The mind changes every moment and eventually perishes with the body, but the atman or spirit remains. This is the eternal self that never perishes, that is the undying witness and never the doer.
Indian philosophy is slowly coming to find an ally in evolving Western science. The Newtonian world was a law-abiding but desolate place from which we were totally unconnected. Next came Darwin, who stripped life of all its spiritual potential and left us bereft. Our only purpose was survival. The pinnacle of humanity appeared to be the terrorist who could efficiently dispose of all weak links. Life was not about sharing and interdependence but about winning and, if need be, warring. These theories produced the modern psyche and have led to some of the world's greatest technological advancement. Unfortunately, such advancement has been at the cost of our humanity and of our divinity. No wonder suicides claim as many lives as homicides and wars.1 Science tore the human being from his roots and left him with a sense of brutal isolation.
With the advent of quantum physics in the early part of the twentieth century, many scientists underwent a dramatic reversal in their views of man and the universe. Modern science is slowly coming to understand that underlying every aspect of the universe is a field of energy that connects every thing to every other thing. Scientists call this the zero-point field. They have found that the tiniest bit of matter isn't matter at all but energy in motion. As Lynne McTaggart has said in her book The Field, "Living beings are a coalescence of energy." Even more interestingly, scientists have discovered that subatomic particles have no meaning by themselves but function only in relation to everything else! This astonishing finding is slowly replacing the old Newtonian physics wherein everything had a set pattern and was totally predictable by the human mind.
Lynne McTaggart goes on to say that the pulsating energy field that underlies existence is the central engine of our being and our consciousness-our alpha and omega. There is no duality between the universe and us. We are connected to every single thing in the cosmos by this one underlying energy field. In The Field she says, "This field [of energy] is responsible for our mind's highest functions, the information source guiding the growth of our bodies. It is our brain, our heart, our memory-indeed a blueprint of the world for all time. The field is the force, rather than germs or genes, that finally determines whether we are healthy or ill, the force which must be tapped in order to heal. . . . 'The field,' as Einstein once succinctly put it, 'is the only reality.'"
The Puranas depict this energy field of Prakriti as the ocean of primeval waters on which Vishnu lies, in which the Island of Jewels or the Mani Dwipa floats. Maha Devi's throne on the Island of Jewels (see chapter 4) is the bindu or point from which all energy eddies in circles to create the expanding universe. Maha Devi or Para Prakriti or Para Shakti is actually nothing but the Brahman. They are a two-in-one reality. In the unmanifest state there is no difference between them. However, when the urge to create occurs, this Para Prakriti pierces through the bindu in the form of the sound hreem, from which the entire world of manifestation arises. Prakriti is the energy of the Brahman. This energy remains latent during the period of dissolution when the cosmos is in a latent state within her. But during the time of evolution and creation she comes to the forefront and carries out the work of manifesting creation.
The universe's underlying energy field is akasa, the ether that is the twenty-third tattva. It is a timeless, spaceless quantum that provides the ultimate blueprint of the world for all time-past, present, and future. Any person who desires or professes to see the past or future has to tap this source. Quantum physics has come to realize that pure energy as it exists on the quantum level is not bound by the ordinary laws of time and space. It exists in a vast continuum of fluctuating charge. When we bring this energy to our conscious awareness through the act of perception, we create the separate objects of our world that exist in time and space. In fact we create our own worlds in time and space and thereby create our separate individualities. This brain-boggling theory, which Western science has only recently become aware of and is still wary of accepting, is something that has been recognized by Indian philosophy from ancient times. In fact it is what the Devi told Himavan in the Devi Gita. Of course the words she used were different, but the meaning is the same.
All the Puranic stories point out this amazing truth. For instance, in the story of the churning of the milky ocean (see chapter 21), the devas (gods) and asuras (demons) represent the positive and negative sides of each person's personality. This personality churns the ocean of all possibilities (the zero-point field), using the churn of space (Mandara) and the rope of time (Ananta), and thus draws out for himself many wondrous things, including the nectar of immortality if he so wishes it. Thus each creates his own separate world.
Time has generally been considered a primary, independent, and universally applicable order both in physics and in common experience. It is one of the fundamental orders known to us. Now modern scientific research is slowly coming to accept the fact that it is a secondary order that is, like space, derived from a higher dimensional ground. Both time and space depend on another multidimensional reality that cannot be comprehended fully through common experience; for human consciousness to operate on this quantum level, it must reside outside space and time. In theory such a state of consciousness would mean that we would be able to access information of both the past and the future, and that every moment of our lives could be made to influence every other moment, both forward and backward. These are breathtaking ideas that science is loath to accept. But Indian yogis have known them from time immemorial.
In every puja or ritual there is a particular step called sankalpa or intention in which the gods are invoked. This intention is the reason the priest undertakes the ritual. It may be for some physical purpose, like the curing of a disease or passing an exam, or anything else. The intention is said to be so important that it can actually change the chain of events and make manifest the desire of the one who performs the ritual. Such reasoning is now backed by modern science; the quantum age has shown that the intention of the experimenter has a lot to do with the final result to be achieved from the experiment. The human factor influences the end result of any experiment!
The individual is not an isolated phenomenon, a piece of flotsam floating aimlessly in the sea of the world, totally unconnected with everything else, with freedom to pursue his own selfish ends. He is part of an interconnected whole in which all of us are deeply involved. Human consciousness is absolutely essential to the making of some objective sense out of the constant flux of subatomic particles. This is the amazing discovery of quantum physics that many scientists are still unable to accept.
In the Devi Gita, Devi says,
I am the intelligence from which the universe emanates and in which it abides. The ignorant believe me to be nothing more than Nature or Prakriti, but the wise experience me as the true self within. They glimpse me in their own hearts when their minds become as still and clear as an ocean without waves. The supreme wisdom is that which ends the delusion that anything exists apart from me. The fruit of this realization is a total lack of fear and the end of sorrow. When one understands that all the limitless universes are but a fraction of an atom in the unity of my being, that all the numberless lives in the universes are the wisps of vapor in one of my breaths, that all triumphs and tragedies, the good and the evil in all the worlds, are merely games I play for my own amusement, then life and death stand still and the drama of individual life evaporates like a shallow pond on a warm day.
This world that you are experiencing now is nothing but my power. The only remedy for your ignorance is to worship me as your innermost self. Surrender yourself to me with one-pointed devotion and I will help you discover your true being. Abide in me as I abide in you. Know that even now at this very moment there is absolutely no difference between us. Realize and be fulfilled this instant."
Vanamali (2008-07-21). Shakti: Realm of the Divine Mother (Kindle Location 308-483). Inner Traditions/Bear & Company. Kindle Edition.
"Self-ignorance is also a form of self-destruction. According to the Dialogue of the Savior, whoever does not understand the elements of the universe, and of himself, is bound for annihilation:
... If one does not [understand] how the fire came to be, he will burn in it, because he does not know his root. If one does not first understand water, he does not know anything.... If one does not understand how the wind that blows came to be, he will run with it. If one does not understand how the body that he wears came to be, he will perish with it.... Whoever does not understand how he came will not understand how he will go ...
How—or where—is one to seek self-knowledge?"
Elaine Pagels, The Gnostic Gospels, Random House (1989) p. 126
The Song of the Goddess:
The Devi Gita: Spiritual Counsel of the Great Goddess
"Our whole cosmic quest of the world and beyond starts from the point of panchabhuta (five elements) which then manifests in an enjoining manner to form the life force and then, later, those five elements disintegrates to ensue a celestial traverse at the Paramanu (atom) level.
However, we will first try to understand these five elements which are Earth or Prithvi; Water or Jal ; Fire or Agni; Air or Vayu and then Ether or Akasha. Each of these Five elements has its own character and celestial elements which we will gauge in the following lines.
Earth (Prithvi): One can touch earth and smell it too ! However, there are two types of earth one is Eternal or (nitya) which are in the form of atom (Paramanu). The other type is perishable (anitya) which exists in the form of Karya or Work at animate and inanimate levels. Symbolically speaking our body, sense organs are the earth which as a whole get the shape of Jiva or life but those are perishable. But elements or atoms are eternal as after death may we bury, or burn the body, all the atoms get disintegrated to come back to its original eternal form. So our body and its Karya or Work are perishable as the mountain or rock forms but the atom remains which are eternal.
Water or Jal is the second element which again has two characters as in the Earth i.e. eternal in the shape of atom and Karya (Work) be it as river, pond or sea are perishable. As from sea or river water evaporates to be in the sky as cloud then again in the shape of rain it comes down on earth. So the eternal atom is only changing its karya or shape of work and what we see is the perishable form. From the sense organ perspective we can touch it to feel and taste it as well.
The third element is Air or Vayu. Again it has two levels as earth and water i.e. eternal atom and perishable Karya. One can feel air, as we breath in or out. We feel the storm or strong breeze which are temporary but air at atomic level remains around us eternally. In the Purana there is a mention of 49 types of Maruts or winds. Seven are important namely 1. Pravaha; 2. Avaha; 3. Udvaha; 4. Samvaha; 5 Vivaha; 6 Parvaha and 7. Paravaha. The wind which takes the water from the ocean is called Udvaha.
Fire or Agni is the fourth element of Indian Panchabhuta. Again it has eternal and perishable elements as we have seen above. The essential character of Fire is to generate heat. According to Hindu Mythology, Agni is one of the Eight guardians who guards our universe and is known as Asta-dik-palakas (Asta-eight, dik—Zone, Palaka-Guardian). The Fire is posited in the South East of the Universe.
However, in Indian mythology there are mentions of various types of fires. The four important ones are fire of the earth, fire of the sky, fire of the stomach (can mean hunger and digestive power as well) and the fire we commonly use.
Then comes the last of the Panchabhuta or five elements which is sound or ether. Ether is unique as it has only one character i.e. eternal. Ether is the carrier of sound be it man made or otherwise. One can hear it. As ether is the only eternal element of the five elements it attracted the attention of various sages. The concept of Akashvani or Divine sound which is heard by sages of higher order is related to this Ether or Akasha. The primordial mantra AUM then in modern times Raam or Shyaam are to work as linkages between Jivatma (life force—atman or soul) to Paramatman or (Omnipotent of supreme soul).The concept of sound and Mantra will be discussed in the next issue. Now we should concentrate on elements, other than five mentioned above which are very important to Hindu theological perspective. Those are Time (Kala) and Space (Sthan or Dik i.e. place and direction); Soul and Mind.
Like ether Time and Space are eternal. Time or kala is common cause of all actions of all the elements and is eternal link of predetermined actions and happenings. Thus in Hindu astrology the whole world and its course are equated with "time." The Direction or Dik are part of Space and North, South, West and East are eternal no matter the Universe undergoes whatever changes.
Then the other element is Soul which is related with the knowledge system of man as jivatman and the eternal Knowledge of God or Paramatman (omnipotent). The last of the nine main elements is the manas or Mind. Its the sense-organ or path to experience the world eternally and otherwise. These sense organs are in the shape of eternal paramanu or atom and works is combinations to derive pleasure at worldly levels. These are the brief out line of main five elements and other four primary elements. It is said that our universe was created out of the manifestation of five elements. This was described in the Devigita very elaborately.
Devigita proclaims that Shakti went about creating the world with 24 tattvas or elements. The five elements were born out of the primordial principle of unmanifested Sakti. The ether through which sound traverse was first element, which is also known as Sabda-rupa (form of sound). Second was Air or Vayu (Sparsharupa or a form which is felt) The Air or Vayu give rise to Agni so it called Vayoranih. Then sense of taste or 'rasrupa' the water element came. The the gandharupa or the source of smell came—the earth."
The View from the Center of the Universe
An interview with Joel R. Primack and Nancy Ellen Abrams
by Elizabeth Debold
"In the last few decades, the cultural conversation about science and religion has become less a scholarly debate and increasingly like a barroom brawl. Atheists and theists are wrangling on the radio, in print, and on every possible bandwidth. The prize is a big one: Who are we? Where do we come from? Our core identity as humans is at stake. Are we God's children, or are we random accidents in an indifferent universe? In other words, does our existence matter to something larger than ourselves?
In the midst of this polemical slugfest, something quite remarkable is emerging from a growing chorus of scientists whose love for and appreciation of our creative cosmos may eventually lead beyond this polarization. The Hubble and other space probes have brought us stunningly gorgeous pictures that inspire wonder at what we are a part of: incandescent nebulae that are the cradles of stars and glowing supernovae that forge the elements from which we are formed. The universe is far more vast, explosively creative, eerily beautiful, and mysterious than anyone could ever have imagined. The scale of what we are in the midst of—the vast dark expanses of space, the infinitesimally small distances traced by subatomic particles, and the stretch of spacetime that extends back for billions of light-years—is nothing less than awesome. As astronomer Carl Sagan once said: "A religion that stressed the magnificence of the universe as revealed by modern science might be able to draw forth reserves of reverence and awe hardly tapped by traditional faiths. Sooner or later, such a religion will emerge.'
But for such a religion to bind itself to the human heart, it has to tell us how to relate to this overwhelming picture that science shows us. Where do we fit in? Are we merely passive witnesses to the unfolding drama of the distant stars? Most materialist scientists demur at this point, believing, as Sagan did, that although the universe can be central to us, we are not central to it."
EnlightenmentNext May-July 2008
How did the Universe emerge?
"The first and greatest mystery is how the universe came to be. For spirituality, the issue seems like a lost cause before discussion even begins. Modern physics has taken over the genesis question, and its answer—the Big Bang and all that followed for the next 13.7 billion years—has succeeded in wiping out the credibility of the Bible, the Koran, the Vedas, and every other indigenous versions of creation. Yet today, just at the moment when science seems poised to strike the final blow, it has gotten stuck. Quantum physics has been forced to stop at the edge of the void that preceded creation, with no way forward until that void can be bridged by an explanation. Leonard's position, shared by physics in general, is that the full explanation will be found through mathematics. My position, shared by students of consciousness in general, is that the very meaning of existence is at stake. In modern times we have assigned cosmology to specialists the way we assign genes to genetics. But you can't pin a sign on creation that says 'Keep out; you don't know enough math.' We all have a stake in genesis, and that's fortunate, because a new creation story is trying to be born in our time, and all previous versions are up for radical revision.
The void is the starting point of any creation story, whether scientific or spiritual. The book of Genesis tells us that 'the earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep.' Assigning God a home in the void doesn't satisfy the scientific mind, however, and spirituality must overcome some strong skeptical objections, which include the following:
- There is no scientific proof that God, or any other creator, exists.
- The universe cannot be proven to have a purpose.
- The preuniverse may be unimaginable. Insofar as our experiences happen in time and space, is it futile to try to explain reality before space and time appeared?
- Randomness seems to be the long-term winner in the universe as stars die and energy approaches absolute zero.
These seem like crushing objections, and Leonard exemplifies the stubborn resistance of science to other ways of regarding the cosmos. Non-scientific explanations he regards with suspicion or worse—as primitive superstition ('white and yellow corn'), or self-delusion. For him, all processes in the cosmos, visible or invisible, can be explained through materialism. But it's fascinating to see just how spirituality has resurged in the debate, and why, in my view, it will gain the upper hand. All of science's objections can be met, and in the process we can lay the groundwork for a new creation story."
War of the Worldviews: Where Science and Spirituality Meet—and Do Not
Deepak Chopra and Leonard Mlodinow, Three Rivers Press (October 2, 2012) pp. 32-3
Black Hole Drinks 140 Trillion Earths' Worth of Water
By Michael D. Lemonick Tuesday, July 26, 2011
This artist's concept illustrates a quasar, or feeding
black hole, where astronomers discovered huge
amounts of water vapor (NASA) We don't think of the universe as a terribly wet place, but in fact, there's water out in space pretty much everywhere you look. A few billion years ago, Mars was awash in the stuff, with rivers scouring twisted channels en route to ancient seas. The Solar System from Jupiter outward would be an interplanetary water park if most of the H2O out there weren't frozen. Saturn's rings are made mostly of trillions of chunks of ice. The comets are mostly ice. So is Pluto. Jupiter's moon Europa has a thick shell of ice surrounding a salty ocean, kept warm by the little world's internal heat. Saturn's moon Eceladus spews its own subsurface water into space in titanic geysers that form a ring of vapor that surrounds Saturn itself. Uranus and Neptune are known to planetary scientists simply as "Ice giants."
And it doesn't stop in our own solar system. Water — solid, liquid or vaporous — has been turning up for years, all over the cosmos. So it takes a pretty impressive discovery to put space water in the headlines. But "Impressive" may be an understatement for what two international teams of astronomers have turned up. Peering out to the very edges of the visible universe, both groups have detected a cloud of water vapor weighing in at a mind-bending 140 trillion times the mass of the world's oceans, swirling around a giant black hole 20 billion times the mass of the Sun. To be precise, the water vapor is mixed with dust and other gases, including carbon monoxide, forming a cloud hundreds of light-years across. (The star closest to Earth, Proxima Centauri, is less than four light-years away.) The cloud is so enormous that while it's incredibly massive, it's also vanishingly sparse: the thinnest morning fog is hundreds of trillions of times denser.
Most surprising of all perhaps, is the fact that finding such an immense reservoir of water, lurking in the cosmos just 1.6 billion years or so after the Big Bang, makes perfect sense. Hydrogen has always been the most common element in the universe. Oxygen is less common, but there's still plenty of it, and the two love to combine whenever they get the chance. And in fact, previous observations had turned up water from only about a billion years later in the life of the cosmos. Earthly astronomers have previously used water vapor swirling around a black hole to try and understand the mysterious dark energy that pervades the cosmos.
The scientists are doing something similar with this new discovery — studying the water to infer what's going on in the black hole itself. They already know it's not just a black hole, but one of a special subclass known as quasars. The body's immense gravity is sucking in gases at a prolific rate, squeezing and heating them until they blaze with a light that can be seen across the universe. Without seeing the water vapor, however, the scientists wouldn't know how much gas lies outside the superheated region, and thus how much potential the black hole has to grow (the answer: it could in theory swell from 20 billion to 120 billion times the mass of our Sun).
For another class of astronomers, meanwhile, water in the universe has a different significance entirely. As far as anyone knows, water is a basic requirement for the emergence of life. For biology to have arisen on other planets, either inside the Solar System or out, the fact that there's plenty of the stuff everywhere you look is reassurance that life may be very common too. Much of the water in the universe comes in the form of ice, lots as water vapor. But it took only a relatively teeny amount in liquid form to nurture life on Earth — and there could easily be plenty of other places in the Milky Way where the very same thing is going on.
Retrieved July 27, 2011
The Hebrew creation myth blamed the female of the species for initial sexual consciousness
"The Hebrew creation myth, which blamed the female of the species for initial sexual consciousness in order to suppress the worship of the Queen of Heaven, Her sacred women and matrilineal customs , from that time on assigned to women the role of sexual temptress. It cast her as the cunning and contriving arouser of the physical desires of men, she who offers the appealing but dangerous fruit. In the male religions, sexual drive was not to be regarded as the natural biological desires of women and men that encouraged the species to reproduce itself but was to be viewed as woman's fault. Not only was the blame for having eaten the fruit of sexuality, and for tempting Adam to do the same, laid heavily upon women, but the proof or admission of her guilt was supposedly made evident in the pain of childbirth , which women were assured was their eternal chastisement for teaching men such bad habits. Eve was to be severely punished as the male deity decreed: 'I will greatly multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children, yet your desire shall be for your husband and he shall rule over you.'
Making use of the natural occurrence of the pains of the pressure of a human child passing from the womb, through a narrow channel, into the outside world, the Levite writer pretended to prove the omnipotent power of his deity. Not only was woman to bear the guilt for sexual consciousness, but according to the male deity her pain in bearing a child was to be regarded as punishment, so that all women giving birth would thus be forced to identify with Eve.
But perhaps most significant was the fact that the story also stated that it was the will of the male deity that Eve would henceforth desire only her husband, redundantly reminding us that this whole fable was designed and propagated to provide 'divine' sanction for male supremacy and a male kinship system, possible only with a certain knowledge of paternity.
We are perhaps all too familiar with the last line of the decree, which announced that from that time on, as a result of her sin and in eternal payment for the defiant crime which she had committed against the male deity, her husband was awarded the divine right to dominate her, to 'rule over' her, to totally assert his authority. And in guilt for what she had supposedly done in the very beginning of time, as if in confession of her poor judgment, she was expected to submit obediently. We may consider here the more practical reality that, once the economic security of women had been undermined by the institution of male kinship, women were forced into the position of accepting this one stable male provider as the one who 'ruled the roost.'
Once these edicts had been issued, the couple was expelled from the Garden of Eden, the original paradise where life had been so easy. From that time on they were to labor for their livelihood, a most severe warning to any woman who might still have been tempted to defy the Levite Yahweh. For hadn't it been just such a woman, listening to the advice of the serpent, eating the forbidden fruit, suggesting that men try it too and join her in sexual consciousness, who had once caused the downfall and misery of all humankind?"
Stone, Merlin (2012-05-09). When God Was A Woman (Kindle Locations 3783-3806). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.
The Paraclete Shri Mataji "As I said, we are made of five elements, alright? So when you get your awakening, when the Kundalini reaches Sahasrara and opens out your fontanel bone area, you become one with the Divine power. Then this Divine power itself starts flowing through you. A connection is established. Now when it starts flowing through you, this Shakti starts flowing through you. Then what happens? The subtle part we should understand. The subtle part is like this. That these five elements, we are made of, these vibrations gradually start breaking into the subtler form of which they are made. So the first thing such a person has, is the you see, as it is said that word is God, said also in the Bible, the word is God. Now what is this Word? Word is a silent, you can say, silent commandment. We can call it like that.
But from that Word comes, according to Indian Philosophy, another thing what we call as Bindu or we can say Word becomes Naad , is a sound. And then it becomes the Bindu means one small dot, and then from this dot all these five elements start coming one after another.
The first element that comes out is light, Tej. Light is the first element that comes out. So the essence of the first element is light. We call it Tej, Tejas. It is written, of course, in Sanskrit but we should understand that how the light pervades Sahaja Yoga so much and you see the light everywhere. So the first element which is light and you can say in English the light's subtle thing is, we can say, enlightenment, you can say. But enlightenment has another meaning. So we can say it is Tej, Tej. For example a person who gets realization has a face which is very radiant. So you can say the radiance. The radiance is the subtlety of the light. So this radiance starts showing on your face. Radiance starts expressing itself and with that radiance people get impressed and they start thinking something special about this personality which has a radiance. Now you have seen my photographs also wherever they are, many a times you find lots of light on me. That is nothing but the light in me is giving radiance because the light becomes subtler. When the light becomes subtle in me, light is one of the elements. When it becomes subtle then it gives radiance and so this is the subtle growth within you that takes place. Your faces also start shining. They too have radiance and they too have a kind of a different complexion, I would say. This radiance is to be understood, is the subtle of the light of which we are made, light in the gross manner.
Then after this from the light comes the second thing, which we call as Vayu in Sanskrit, meaning the air. So the air that we have which is gross air, what is subtle of air is the cool breeze that you get. The cool breeze is the subtle of that air. So the subtle of what you understand as cool breeze is what we call vibrations, the subtle of that is air; which is a part and parcel of our making. So this cool breeze is the second thing that you start getting subtler and subtler. When your growth takes place, all these subtle things start expressing themselves. It is not only that you get vibrations but you get the cool breeze and that is the subtler of air that has been.
Then comes the Water. We are also made of water. What is the subtle of water is ... Sometimes English language, you know, becomes little short of expressions ... but they call it, I mean which makes the skin, hard skin soft. The skin becomes soft. This is another sign of a realized soul that his, there is some cream they use, is not it, to soften the face. But this is the water in us, gives us that luster, that nourishment to make our skin very soft and that softness of the skin becomes very visible. This is the minimum of minimum, I would say. But then a person who is a realized soul becomes very soft person, very delicate. When he talks to some body, in his voice there is warmth or I should say there is where to have that flow, watery flow and coolness of the water. So that is another subtle thing that should be expressed in your behavior, on your skin, on your dealings with others, that you should be like the water, which is mobile, which is cooling, which is soothing, which is cleansing. So this also becomes a part and parcel of your being, once you become a realized soul.
With this water you have also another thing which we call it as Agni, means the fire. So you also have fire but it is a very silent fire. It does not burn anybody but it burns all the wrong things within you. Whatever wrong things you have it burns and it burns the wrong things in other people also. For example, a person comes with a great anger towards me. What happens that this anger becomes cooler with the fire that is there. Moreover, a realized soul cannot get burnt, fire cannot burn, the burning cannot come to him. It is very important to understand. Also if you are doing something wrong, it may burn you but if you are a good Sahaja Yogi and I should say, perfect Sahaja Yogi, fire will never burn you. We have an example of Sita Ji that she went into the fire but nothing burnt. So this is what one has to understand, understand that once you get to the subtleties of the fire.
So the fire and the water both of them become sort of Divine. For example, the water which you touch, water you drink, whatever, you put your hand in the water, the water becomes vibrated. Means What? The subtleties of the water comes in it, the coolness, curing power also comes in that water. So when it becomes subtler, all these powers start showing which you can see for yourself. You do not have to experiment.
Then lastly is The Mother Earth. It is most important. The Mother Earth. There is a photograph you might see which was taken in Russia in Dacha where the Kundalini is in The Mother Earth. They have shown clearly. It is there and it is The Mother Earth which shows. For example, I have seen flowers. If you keep them in my room, they blossom. They can become very big like that, never people have seen such big flowers, sometimes they say. I am doing nothing. I am just sitting down. What happens to the flowers? You see now there this principle of The Mother Earth works. It is a mother that gives you all the nourishment and makes you grow healthy, and this is how this subtlety of The Mother Earth works. Mother Earth is the one who is giver of virtue to all these flowers and to all these trees and to all that. But it also plays a big part in us. It is not only The Mother Earth that exists without our connection and we do not respect The Mother Earth. We have polluted it. We have done all kinds of things, we have removed the trees and we have made a mess out of her. But she is our Mother and so many subtle things of this Mother Earth come into us. One of them is gravity. A person becomes very attractive, not in the physical sense but in the spiritual sense. Such a person attracts others. If it attracts them, they feel that something is special about this person. This is one of the qualities of The Mother Earth. If she had not kept us attracted we would have fallen out with her movement and also other qualities of The Mother Earth start manifesting within us. We become very, I should say, extremely tolerant and patient. But if you are not tolerant, if you are hot tempered and all that, then Mother Earth's principle is not expressed in you. Look at The Mother Earth. How much she tolerates our nonsense, how many wrong things we do against her, but still she tolerates."
Expression of Five Elements, Delhi, India—16 December 1998
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