Varaha Mihira

Varaha Mihira, the father of astrology, wrote several important works like Brhat Jataka, Brhat Samhita, Yoga Yatra, Panca Siddhantika (on astronomy) and Prasna Vallabha (apocryphal) The date of Varaha Mihira is controversial, some say circa 100 BC others 500 AD.Mihira was one of the Nine Gems, navaratna, in the court of the great king, Vikramaditya of Ujjain. I just admire Varaha Mihira, and its nothing related to the blogs i am posting here.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

The 18 Siddhas

The word "siddha" is derived from the word "chitta," a Siddha is essentially a perfected being. The chitta is the mind-stuff which lingers around the innermost self and percolates through the sheaths surrounding the self. Patanjali has stated in Raja Yoga Sutras that Yoga consists of cleansing the chitta. He is referring to the release of the unconscious memories, thought forms, sense of separateness from the inner divine self, and the erroneous conception that the being is actually the external ego and associated consciousness. These limited “memories” and inaccurate aspects of the mind-stuff have often been stored for lifetimes in the subtle space of self (akash). Here the reference to “memories” is made even though the mind-stuff is not remembered by the external self. It is the mind-stuff that interferes with the Divine will manifesting from soul (atman) in an individual and drives the actions of the external being into areas that are not consistent with Divine will. As an individual begins to be liberated from the influence of the mind-stuff, the divine attributes of the atman or self manifest in the very subtle sheath of bliss (Anandamaya kosham) that surrounds the atman. When the transformation of that very subtle part of the being has been given fully to the divine, the individual becomes literally a beacon of bliss-light. Simply being in the presence of such a being is uplifting. Such an elevated individual is often acknowledged by a conscious or spiritual community as a saint. When you look into the eyes of such a being, you will feel the depth of bliss and peace and be blessed and gradually transformed. The divine can initiate a sincere aspirant through such means.The transformation of the bliss sheath, however, does not occur in a vacuum. Anyone whose spiritual practices have thus resulted in the awareness of the Divine working through them has already begun the transformational process and surrendering of the sheath of the intellect (Vinjnanamaya Kosham). When the analytical or intellectual component of the being is fully informed by the divine light attributes we may (through Divine Grace) be in a position to recognize such a being as the sage that they are. Such an individual is truly a “muni” or one who has had their accumulated experiences and knowledge enlightened by the higher, deeper aspects of self. When the transformation of the intellect is complete the speech and communication skills are highly evolved and express a consciousness which is focused, penetrating, broad and vast. It is a misconception to think that such persons are clones of each other. The Divine essence manifests with variety in the intellect of every soul not only because the external experiences vary, but also because of the unique qualities that are inherent in the deepest part of the being, the atman. It is said that no one is a muni who has no independent opinion of their own. Such a sage has digested and integrated the informed divine light into the analytical aspects of the being.As the intellect undergoes this transformation, the mental sheath (manomaya Kosham), associated with the senses, is similarly transformed. This is, of course, an individual who is fully aware of the Divine as the prime mover. Since the ego has been given to the Divine, every action related to the senses is observed and understood to be none other than the indwelling god or goddess doing the experiencing and enjoying. Such a Buddha can enjoy all the senses without fear of confusion or being lost spiritually in them. For the great tantrics who have attained to this state, conventional rules which guide and provide stability, safety and structure to society are irrelevant. As the divine light descends into the sheath of energy (pranamaya kosham) the entity becomes a siddha in the truest sense of the word. As defined in the upanishads, A siddha is one who has progressed from the exalted state of freed while living (jivanmukta) to supremely free with full power over death (para mukta). This state is referred to in Siddhantha literature as soruba mukti or soruba samadhi. This para mukta will rarely retain the transformed physical frame and when so, remains as an avatar. The physical body (Ananda Maya Kosham) of the siddha glows with the fire of immortality. The transformation of the physical plane is rare indeed, even among the celestial siddhas. An accurate rendering on the life of such a siddha is precisely as difficult as reducing the cosmic to a rule. The divine is to be experienced, not expressed, and the mystic greatness of a saint, sage, or siddha lies not on the surface for men to see. It is clear that these siddhas have, and continue to guide the advance of consciousness on our planet and elsewhere. Humanity truly owes a deep dept of gratitude to these God-Men, of which 18 are acknowledged as the greatest. The climax of the siddha tradition is the immortal Himalayan Kriya master, Babaji Nagaraj.

The 18 Siddhas

Sri Patanjali Siddhar(1st)
Sri Agathiyar(2nd)
Sri Kamalamuni(3rd)
Sri Tirumoolar(4th)
Sri Kudumbai (5th)
Sri Goraknath (6th)
Sri Danvanthari (7th)
Sri Sundaranundar(8th)
Sri Konkanavar (9th)
Sri Sattamuni(10th)
Sri Valmiki(11th)
Sri Rama Devar(12th)
Sri Nandi Devar(13th)
Sri Idai Kadar(14th)
Sri Machamuni(15th)
Sri Karuvoorar(16th)
Sri Boganathar(17th)
Sri Paambati(18th)


Blogger vp said...

Nice write-up.Would you please give explanation as to why the Soul, the origin of which is unknown, should get engulfed in deires and thereby attracting Karmas? Is the Atman not supposed to be all knowledgeable, indestructable and has similar qualities to the creating Divinity?To say that it gains such knowledge only after it is encased in a human body( made of much inferior decomposing elements)will be a contradiction. Again , when the Atman takes its first birth how is the fitment done? ie., where it should be born- as a king or as a beggar or in bettween somewhere? The reason is , since it is unborn(vis-a-vis this world) it has not attarcted any karmas till then. In this kind of philosophy are we not just asking the listenors to accept the first presumption and thereafter building concrete theories to justify the first presumption?

2/09/2009 12:49:00 PM  

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