Monday, November 30, 2020

Vivaaha Samskaara – 2 (Vivaaha to beget worthy progeny with Supreme Knowledge)

Kannada Article by: Tarodi Suresha

English Rendering by: Padmini Shrinivasan


We have acquainted ourselves with synonyms for the marriage ritual. It is called 'Paani-grahana' as both the bride and the groom, vow together while specially holding their hands –"let your heart be mine and my heart be yours".'Upayama' means the attainment of a divine orientation by the groom, who is morally bound and observes restraint, while accepting the bride. Animals do not possess any restraint and unite based on their sensual instincts. Even in humans if it is driven by an ego "get them married, they are of marriageable age", then it is as good as an animal's life. Jnaanis have identified additional qualities to be fulfilled. When such qualities are incorporated, the marriage proceeds as a purifying ritual (Samskaara). The groom, as a Brahmachari, graduates after completing his education (Vidyaabhyaasa) at the residence of his teacher (Gurukula). The Guru while instructing him not to cut the offspring chain, grants him permission to accept the life of a householder (Gruhasta). Akin to receiving sunlight from the sun, the disciple who has been blessed with spiritual knowledge from his Preceptor, enters into matrimony to get blessed with worthy progeny. Graduating as a Jnaani with the training imparted by his Guru, he qualifies to lead a life with an inner divine vision at its root (Jnaana-netra); then it is imperative that he gets married at the right age. Even in the saying "Vidyaam cha vittam cha vapurvayascha", age (Vayas) appears at the end implying that Vidyaa is more important than age. The spiritual training (Vidya) received by him is of that kind capable of elevating one into a salvation path (Vid jnaane + yaapraapane). It is not an M.A., Ph.D. kind of knowledge.

The conversation between the bride and the groom stands as a witness to this. The bride addresses the groom and says "I am visualising that you are a Jnaani through penance. I seek refuge in a Jnaani Satprusha (supremely pious person) like you". The groom with a divine reminiscence says "I am also visualising the Jnaana in you". A spectacular sight to witness! – bound by Dharma, the bride and groom with their Jnaana step into a wedlock, with a prayer to get blessed with Dharmasantaana (offspring capable of upholding and nurturing Dharma). As per the design of Rshis, all the relatives and guests who partake in the function, acquire Samskaara through thoughts steeped in the Supreme Lord (Parabrahman). Only thus, will life rise above the level of beasts and mature with the human's inherent ability, to lead an earthly- as well as heavenly-fulfilling life.

As per the saying "Jaamaata Vishnuvat poojyah", worshipping the son-in-law (as if he is Lord Vishnu) is a prevalent custom. If he has to be worshipped as a representative of Vishnu, what should be the son-in-law's worth? With passage of time, this saying has degenerated to take the form "Jaamaataa dashamo grahah". The position of the remaining nine planets can be precisely predicted, while the behaviour of this tenth planet known as son-in-law is beyond anybody's guess!  This is an experience familiar to most of us.This trend upholds an under valuation of the Maharshi culture.

Sriranga Mahaaguru had explained thus "the word Aliya (son-in-law in Kannada) means Aliyade iruvudu (eternal), it implies that he is Acchyuta (a name of Lord Vishnu meaning imperishable).

Note: The Kannada version of this article can be viewed at AYVM blogs.   

(To be continued)