Below is a comment from Rayshan on The Structure of the Veda blog and my response:
An amazing class and amazing grace brought forth by an amazing guru!
I saw the framework of my cottage went up today. Suddenly I realized that the structure of the Veda is like the framework of a house. Understanding the framework makes it easier to connect the dots. It’s a very dry and difficult topic to teach. Amazingly Maharshiji came back the 2nd day with easier-to-understand modern language that put me in awe. Thank you so much Guruji. I am so looking forward to the next class!
There was a lesson within the lesson. Though the feedback was wonderful, personally I was not so delighted with the first day of class. My barometer is the faces and ‘brainwaves’ of the people I speak to. ‘Light bulbs’ were not going off in people’s heads the way I had planned. I could see that most of what I said the first day was not going ‘in’. So that evening I reflected, pondered, spoke with people who were in the class, and adjusted accordingly. The second day was wonderful and I was very pleased.
That is an example of the principle of putting something out, seeing what comes back, and adjusting accordingly… a principle that is valuable at all levels and in all arenas of life. Too often people try to know exactly what is right before they do anything. As a result, they either do nothing or keep pushing down the same nonproductive path.
Now that I found the way ‘in’ to explaining the structure of the Veda, I look forward to taking the next step with a series of lessons on the subject. There is no end to all that unfolds from this knowledge. Understanding, grasping and awakening to the concepts, the parts in terms of the whole, is of more value than the memorization of volumes. To really know it, you must become it. I look forward to revealing the grandeur and full potential of Vedic Knowledge to all of humanity. The potential is without limit… beyond imagination.
Rayshan, your comment about building your cottage is quite right. The structure of the Veda is the structure underlying and permeating all life and existence. The principles involved apply to all fields of life… apply to everything. All too often (like the study of quantum physics!) the study of Veda becomes a dry intellectual endeavor that seems to be disconnected from life. I could see that was where people were going with it the first day, which is why I revamped the teaching on the second day.
Understand the Veda, and you understand everything. A true Vedic Scholar is not merely an intellectual. A true Vedic Scholar is the embodiment of Truth. Memorizing Sanskrit, Vedic chants and mantras is of great value. I am humbled by, and have profound respect and appreciation for, those who have that knowledge. However, though it assists in attaining the ultimate goal, it is not the goal. The ultimate goal is to actually become ‘IT’.
The intent of my teachings, of how and what I teach, is to assist you in actually becoming it.
It takes my breath away to further realize how perfect our Teacher is for us in this rational, yet Kali, age. It seems that learning the structure of Veda is both a tilling of our own inner landscapes and an outside-in resonance that helps gravitate us forward.
I know you don’t have to teach, Maharshi. You could avoid all the slings and arrows hurled your way by living a quiet householder life. I am humbled and so grateful for your unending love for us.
I don’t know if this has to do with also the Western educational system in part as well, since so much of my learning seemed to be pockets of memorizing knowledge without a big picture…then going out and referring back to what was implanted in my brain, mainly via rote memorization. Regurgitating back what I memorized. Maybe it stayed in there as another fact crammed in, maybe not. I know it has to do more so with my physiology, my samskaras and my perception of my own shortcomings.
I am surprised on the first day if after five or ten minutes if I was even displaying any brainwaves. I knew this was something precious and I just wanted to get it. I would MAKE myself get it. Frustrating to the max, because how I used to get it wasn’t working. And in perspective that was a huge lesson to me about….true wisdom, knowledge vs. Knowledge, the danger of building and framing a house without a proper foundation, allowing and surrender, non judgement, the extreme importance of the group consciousness, how meditation and activity helps integrate this process, and being easy with the sledgehammer because sometimes awakening and evolving isn’t all pretty, rosy and glowing.
Now… I don’t go to dumbness after a week. I can actually feel that space and grandeur. I don’t think the first day was any kind of bad thing. For me, I don’t know how else the very process of how I learn , even breathe and exist could have been changed. It is very hard not to sob about it. And at some stage, you can’t run from it any longer.
When I used to think structure I did think of things like house framing, or chronological systems, or one plus one equals two, or having everything line up with absolute rigidity and perfection, or what is the next ingredient or step to my recipe, or having something contained.
What happens now is that frame of reference was broken apart and I was left with stillness and space, the impossibility of containing anything that not only stretches out to infinity but is in itself infinite, and the further realization that this is happening moment to moment…everywhere, and the very me isn’t me at all. I can’t even look at this happening because the happening ceases too.
The further cosmic joke was me sitting there in learning mode, even to the point of taking notes. The Veda was in me, and everywhere, and wasn’t exclusively in that moment.
It was like in the Razors Edge when Larry went up the mountaintop with what looked like no supplies except for all the sacred texts. And you see him sitting there freezing wrapped in layer upon layer and reading and shivering with snow pelting down on him. Next he is laughing, and makes a fire and is burning the pages. Sometimes it takes extreme measures to realize that what we seek out there is right in here. The lengths we go to to find it, and we ARE it!
In this business, you really have to have a great sense of humor.
Jai Guru Dev
Addendum….and the most important part of the lesson
Without my Guru, I am held captive in Plato’s cave, stumbling around idiotically thinking my darkness is the light. There is relatively a distinct separation , even of the dark cave and the light outside, but I am perfectly content living in darkness. I don’t even know that a different sort of light exists. I don’t know dark is dark, it is just how I roll.
And I pathetically exist, no better than the earthworm writing in the mud of what becomes normality. Of what becomes reality. Man can excel at building his own impermeable prisons of containment. How many cities have risen and fallen, how many societies have taken the knives to their own throat, because we were just doing the best we knew how, thinking we were celebrating our grandeur, making a silly child’s house of cards, only to be blown away in the slightest breeze.
Without my Guru, I step outside my cave, probably through pure random chance, and I become blinded never having seen this light, not even realizing I am the light. I run back into my cave afraid of the grandeur of myself.
I could go on and on, but, class made me even more aware that it is with the grace of my Guru that I can evolve.
The Knowledge is inside us all, and pulsing lively all around us, but I am guessing there is an infinitely small chance of self discovery.
Class last weekend really demonstrated that. And…I don’t think I emphasized that in my previous posting.
I love you Brahmarshi. I love you ashramites. I am grateful to everyone here, even temporarily, who helps not only my evolution, but the world evolve.
In gratitude and exceedingly humbled, and apologies I did not emphasize this enough previously….
How I love this. I heard the class was one of the best to date. I love the correlation between the framework of the Vedas and Vastu Architecture…light bulb moment…that and Jyotush…all connected. Especially in light of the framework of my house going up this week.
Jai Siva Sankara
Donna- wow and double wow! Thank you for such an outstanding post. How illuminating for the rest of us.