A brief note on Rta – cosmic laws of necessity
Having created these laws (Rta), Vedas say God follows them sternly. These laws are eternal and any cosmic law, which changes with time, is not a Vedic RTA. Not following these is misery and even death. These laws cover comprehensively human conduct, avoidance of all material excesses, enlightened liberalism, selfless action, path of virtue etc. All animate life- human beings; animals, birds, fishes and others can know these laws from the Book of Nature. These laws are a-priori principles known to individuals “real self”. In the Vedas Dharma is Rta. Not following these laws is adharma. Rtam satyam vijnani– true knowledge is knowing the Truth that is Rta.
Rta – The Cosmic Laws Of Necessity
For the laws of God the terms used in the Vedas are Rta, Ritane and Vratani. Yajur Veda 6-4 ordains " O, man study God's works of creation, preservation and dissolution whereby He determines His laws.” These laws are commandments of God for social and moral order, apart from good conduct and harmonious living of human beings. Atharva Veda 4-1-3 tells us that from the bosom of the sacred word OM that is described in the Vedas as Cosmic Word or shabada Brahma, He brought forth the world- on high, below where He abides in His own laws.These laws are applicable to all kinds of animate life- human beings, animals, birds, fishes, reptiles and others for their movement with full freedom and happiness whether they live in sky, deep and shallow waters and those who live close to the surface of the earth. These are eternal laws and have passed through barbarism, ruthless tyranny, autocracy, oligarchy, age of reason, science and technology, pure idealism to extreme of materialism, but still remain the same and guide the mankind throughout the world. Thus more appropriately we can describe these laws as the Will of God and it is the sum total of all causes, all divine laws scattered over time and space through the functioning of the Nature.
The divine Nature is not only the manifestation of God and our supreme Mother, but also works as perfect preceptor through her Book of Nature. All children from the time of their birth, young and old persons of all countries, religions, sects can read without any difficulty whether literate or illiterate. Blind persons if they can not read the Book of Nature and its laws, they can infer and perceive these laws with the help of their inner divine instruments viz., soul, spirit, buddhi (intellect), manas (mind) and outer instruments like human senses and senses organs. Vedas clearly bring out that even animals, birds, fishes, plants and others have no difficulty in reading this Book of Nature containing all the laws of God. Prakrti is also mentioned in the Vedas as "Matar"-the material cause, which is the mother of the world at the primeval state. When it came in direct contact with "Pitar" (God) cosmos that is a jumble of physical and non-physical forces fashioned by the eternal law (Ritane) came in to existence (A.V. XI-1-23).
The various other scriptures of different religions in the world describe these Laws as divine laws, cosmic laws of social, moral and physical order, laws of nature, eternal laws, laws which bind and unite all the religions into one divine religion, laws of necessity and also by many other names and descriptions. Chinese scriptures refer to these as divine Li or divine principles. Vedas, however, cautions that bereft of Rta or Vratani, various religions start splitting into smaller sects, cults and those religions soon lose their transparency, openness and truthfulness. Those smaller sects and cults only give lip sympathy through their hypocritical teachings to Rta for their material and vested interests.
According to Yajur Veda 26-1, we get true knowledge of these cosmic laws from seven forces of the Nature viz.; the Sun, Moon, firmament, waters, clouds, fire and the earth, which are all beneficial to the mankind and make our paths pleasant and comfortable. Taittrya Upanishad 1-2 says, if religion is dharma (righteousness), it is then Rta. The Vedic metaphysicists, seers and sages have prescribed three-fold path for a common individual i.e. dharma, artha and kama. However, for a Yogi four-fold path of dharma, artha, kama and moksha (liberation) has been prescribed. The activities and conduct of a common man is to be based on righteousness, pursuit of material requirements (artha) and enjoyment (kama) on the path of spiritual and divine knowledge based on Rta.For a Sankhya Yogi on the path of Brahma jnan- the harmony of material, spiritual and divine knowledge, moksha or liberation is also prescribed. When this three-fold path is totally devoid of Rta, the same path becomes adharma- unrighteousness and evil.
The great importance given to Rta in the Vedas can be appreciated from the description of these laws in Rig Veda 1-75- 5 where it says, " ritam. satyam vijnani ", which would literally mean knowing of truth, which is Rta, is the only true knowledge. These laws are part of Vedic higher knowledge. You are only free to do any action if you obey and follow these commands of the God and without following them no individual can seek moksha- the state of eternal bliss. It is also the state when you reach the abode of God and avoid rebirth in this phenomenal world. The litmus test of following Rta or Vratani is that you start moving towards voluntary simplicity both in thoughts and actions and also you start perceiving all material excesses as evil and sin. Rig Veda 1-24-15 clearly says that by following these laws, you remain away from misery and get bliss. There is also a prayer in Rig Veda 1-25-1,“ O, merciful God, be kind to us as we violate your laws, knowingly and unknowingly day after day.” Obviously this simple prayer is a reminder to the men and women to start knowing, understanding and following these laws for their own interest as well as for the interest of the entire man kind and other animate life. Vedic metaphysicists have found that having created these laws God Himself follows them sternly, lest a cosmic disorder or chaos may result in the destruction of the Universe. These metaphysical thoughts are also contained in Bhagavad Gita where lord Krishna says, " If I (as formless and ineffable God) cease to act, these worlds will perish, I should be the author of confusion and cause of destruction of these people (B.G 3-24).
In the recent years if Swami Vivekananda emphasised the need to spread Vedic metaphysics contained in the fourth and the last part of Vedas, Swami Dayanand did his best to spread Vedic Mantras contained in the third part of Vedas and also the concept of Dharma and Rta. He had translated Rta as absolute truth for all times. These holy laws are inviolable, immutable and eternal (R.V.1-12-7 and 1-24-10). Even the Vedic Dharma, which is now considered by many learned people as philosophical religion of Hindus and not the present organised religion, is entirely based on Rta. Rig-Veda 1-162-2 further ordains if at any stage the concept of righteousness deviates even slightly from the divine laws conveyed to us through Prakrti as Rta, that is no longer Dharma. However, Vedas do recognise that all human beings may not be able to follow the laws of God in their entirety, so certain relaxation are permissible within limits. As the flowing river is useful so long as it does not get inundated or its flow is stopped owing to inadequate quantity of water leading to stagnation, when it is not useful for irrigation, drinking and even for taking bath. Thus the river is useful so long as it flows within the limits of maximum and minimum quantity of water and also when the water flows within its two banks. Thus Vedas enjoin that an ideal and noble living based on Rta is within the limits of moderation by avoiding all excesses- both affluence and deficiency.
Bhagavad Gita also reiterated the Vedic concept of moderation without specifically referring to Rta. While referring to all material excesses as sin, lord Krishna in Bhagavad Gita advised the human beings to abstain from the frivolous pursuit of money (B.G 14- 2). Such a pursuit leads to absence of self-esteem and envelops the person in the mesh of delusion and addiction to the enjoyment of sensuous pleasures of transitory nature and finally such person’s fall into the foulest hell (B.G 16-15). Those persons in blind pursuit of money and worship God for ostentation and also other sinners are the cruelest and vilest amongst men are cast again and again in the demoniacal wombs (B.G 16-17 to 19). Lord Krishna had also told Arjuna in Bhagavad Gita that who ever is born with gross body has to die.
In the Vedas the metaphysical theory of birth, death and rebirth is based on Rtaand also Karma of one’s good and bad deeds. While for human beings life of about one hundred years is contemplated, the divine Nature i.e. the subtle Prakrti and also gross Universe are created, preserved, destroyed and recreated at very long intervals of millions of years. The same laws of birth and death also apply to all animate life. Vedas mention a life of about 100 years for those who follow Rta, unlike Hindus mythological epic and scriptures Ramayana where average life of human beings is mentioned about ten thousands years. The religious fables in Puranas mention that some individuals blessed by devas had lived a few hundred thousand years. Obviously later Hindu scriptures deviated from the Vedic metaphysics. Rig-Veda 1- 22-8 decrees that all things in this world, middle region and heaven follow eternal laws ordained by Him. Yajur Veda 24-42 further says, that all pathways HE guides with Rta, which are also moral laws. Aittriya Upanishad 4-1 and Taittrya Upanishad 1-2 reiterate this divine truth.
The importance of Prakrti is no less in these Rta. According to Brihadrnayka Upanishad, human intelligence and senses get vitiated by impure matter, which can be purified by divine Nature if we follow its laws. Being supreme mother, Prakrti helps in purifying Sattavic, Rajasic and Tamasic guna of subtle primordial matter, senses and human thought and helps in the realisation of one's extended perfect real “Self”. In this process the gross body starts becoming divine and Aura appears. Thus the gateway to bliss, self- realisation, liberation and perfection is the complete knowledge of Rta. Thereafter one lives life unfettered by performing one's allotted duty without attachment.
The Vedic Rta that all material excesses are evil and therefore constitute sin is also mentioned in the holy Bible. It ordains that even a camel can pass through the eye of a needle, but no rich person can ever enter the kingdom of heaven. Lao Tse in his Tao-te-Ching explains divine Li- the cosmic laws in his great metaphysical style,” What is deficient is supplemented. It is the way of God. The way of man, it reduces those who are deficient and offer to those who are surplus. Who can offer the surpluses to the world? Only a person of Tao." Rig Veda 10-31-2 and 10-34-13 ordains that human beings should think well of material wealth and strive to earn along the path of Rta by observing golden rule of moderation.
These laws of social and moral order are indeed a-priori principles. If all these principles could be discovered, there would be permanent improvement in human thought and action. The wise sages of the ancient Vedic period studied various characteristics, properties and attributes of the Sun, Moon, stars, rivers, fire, trees etc., and all other aspects of Prakrti to discover such laws. During their transcendental research and study they found a number of such Rta and many other truths, a-priori principles relating to physical sciences as well. From these eternal laws they arrived at the concept of transmigration of soul, till it attains Moksha (salvation). They also found laws relating to selfless action (nishkam karma) for the benefit of mankind, four divine professions (Varna) based on one's merit, capacity, ability and aptitude and many other metaphysical concepts contained in the Vedas. The God works through Prakrti, as He Himself is formless and ineffable. Bhagavad Gita also confirms this in chapter 9 where it says," Nature brings forth the whole creation, consisting of both sentient and non sentient beings under the supervision of God.”
This Vedic truth is also observed by pure advaita Vedantists like Sankracharya that God is not a creator but an unmoved mover and supervisor. It is perhaps for this reason that Buddha found Nature as an adequate cause for the creation of the gross universe. The Greek philosopher Aristotle also found God as unmoved mover and not a creator. Creators are normally dissatisfied but ambitious persons and pass through all types of obstacles before any perfect creation. But God is perfect, satisfied and no obstacles can come to Him, so HE is not a Creator but an Unmoved Mover. The orderly movement of the entire universe is due to the Nature, which remains under the divine guidance of the Unmoved Mover. However, all the metaphysicists’ of Indian schools of philosophy largely agree that HE is the lawmaker and transgression of His laws is misery and even death (A.V 3-30-4 and Y.V 25-13) Incidentally Vedas tell us that Sun is also an Unmoved Mover and moves the earth with its gravitational force and ensures that the earth does not give any jerks. Many comic laws of necessity are derived from the Sun.
For the study of Rta or Vratani, the lovers of wisdom and wandering sages of the Vedic period, divided the attributes of Prakrti-the divine Nature, into 33 parts corresponding to 33 parts of human body i.e. all senses, sense organs, limbs, joints and subtler instruments like Buddhi (intellect) etc. In Prakrti there are also subtle and gross parts. The Universe is the main gross part. Vedas also tell us that all attributes and characteristics of the Nature to a varying degree are also found in the human beings based on the quantum and predominance of primordial subtle matter of three gunas of purity, activity and passivity in the gross body. Even the divine Nature has three gunas in different proportion, which uphold the Universe. Vedas assigned these attributes of Prakrti symbolically to 33 subtle and formless deva. (beings of light). Some of these devas are Surya (light, knowledge), Prithvi (earth), Usha (dawn), Indra (power and strength), Agni (holy fire, heat and electric energy) and others.
These 33 devas maintain cosmic order and are divided into three levels of the universe (a) sky, ether, heaven above (b) below the earth, sea, ocean etc., and (c) for all phenomenon occurring on or near the surface of the earth. Concentrating and meditating on these 33 devas helped the ancient seers and wandering sages in discovering various Rta in a systematic manner. In a very large number of hymns in the Vedas, the names of devas appear as Agni, Varuna, Mitra, Ashvinau, Ribhu, Saraswati etc. On first cursory reading of the Vedas, one gets the impression that Vedic metaphysicists believed in the multiplicity of gods and Gods. This impression starts vanishing steadily with the second, third and further readings. The in-depth study would reveal that Vedas are based on absolute monism and monotheism. God is ONE; wise men address Him by many names.
By meditating on these devas, Vedic metaphysicists found the laws relating to discipline, regularity and knowledge from Surya deva (the Sun). They found laws relating to Time (kala) and mathematics from Usha devi (dawn), heat energy, electricity, energy principle in the human body from Agni deva (holy fire), many other Rta relating to role of rulers, bureaucrats, Commander -in-Chief from Indra deva with attributes of power and strength. The Vedic seers found Varun and Mitra devas as the upholders of Rta- all the divine laws (A.V 4-5-6) and both these devas ensure uniformity in the various phenomenon of the Nature. In view of their attributes there is a prayer in Yajur Veda (26-1), " May I obtain true knowledge from these forces (devas) of the Nature." It is because of these formless beings of light, there is never any deviation in the natural system of birth, growth and death in the entire animate life on this earth and also all the properties assigned by God in the domain of animate and inanimate life remain the same. Whatever has a Form- man, woman, animal, bird, tree, plant and even mahabhuta (five main elements) and hundreds of bhuta, planets, galaxies, universe and even the entire subtle and gross Nature etc., has to face the phenomenon of death and rebirth-dissolution and creation. However, this phenomenon is not applicable to God- Nirguna Brahma, being formless and eternal. Vedic metaphysics is very specific that God is Aja-unborn and there is never any incarnation of God as a human being or any other form.
Amongst the six schools of Indian philosophy, there are dualists- dvaita Vedantists. While accepting personal and impersonal God as Nirguna and Saguna Brahma, they have cautioned that worshipping of personal God with form and attributes, in the spirit of divinity, would do certainly great benefit to the devotee. However, worshipping of such personal God/gods as a part of materialistic philosophy and for ostentation can also do a great harm. Thus the worship of gods/God having belief in Bhakti Yoga (path of devotion) for attaining divine qualities is good for the society and the same worship for personal and material gain can be extremely harmful. These dualists also advise that human beings should find more and more Rta and those cosmic laws will guide the individuals towards the path of righteousness, spiritual and material wealth, enjoyment and even moksha (salvation). These laws will make you as lovers of wisdom and also of learning material, spiritual and divine knowledge. This path in the Vedas is described as Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha. However, human activities bereft of Rta can create social, moral and physical disorder in the vicinity where he/she lives and these can further spread in the family, society, state and finally in the universe. Vedas strongly advise the rulers, kings queens, Presidents, bureaucrats and others to know these laws. Somadeva Niti Vakyamrita 17.183 says, " When the ruler is deceitful who will not be deceitful? When the ruler is unrighteous, who will not be unrighteous?"
When we study the cosmic laws relating to growth of all animate life, we shall find that all growth in the Nature in respect of human beings, animals, plants etc., is slow, gradual and by evolution and certainly not by revolution. This system continues till it is not capable of further growth and then the reverse process of disintegration and dissolution starts leading to natural and graceful death of all animate life. This process to a large extent is also applicable to inanimate life. Any deliberate effort to change this law or Vedic Rta both for early growth and forced death (dissolution) would lead to all kinds of social evils, corruption, injustice, unhealthy practices in society, family, gross body and also in the physical surroundings. Vedic metaphysics is very clear and emphatic that all activities of human beings bereft of Rta, are the cause of destruction of self and society.
From many hymns in the Vedas including the philosophy of Upanishads it is apparent that " all life is one". It is based on the life principle from One Divine source only, which the absolute and pure monists like, Sankracharya describe as the only Reality. Socrates and Plato referred to it as the supreme form Summon Genus. Based on this life principal the cosmos exhibits order, regularity, perfect design, which clearly shows that Prakrti, is rational, living and divine. The Mahat of Prakrti is the sum total of intelligence of all individuals and other animate life. We find roundness of form in Nature like, Sun, Moon, planets, earth, fruits, vegetables etc. Even at atomic and sub atomic level like protons, electrons etc., roundness is there. In the Nature all round things energised by God's spirit tend to unite. Thus unity and harmony is the base on which all the laws of God are formulated. Without knowing this “unity in diversity” and harmony in the divine subtle Nature and gross universe, no one can understand and appreciate these laws of necessity. All these natural forms govern the physical world with certain laws of mathematical exactness, regularity and help creating order in the Nature.
The transparency, truthfulness, divinity, discipline and regularity in the Nature make us move towards laws of God. Using divine instruments of our inner world viz. soul, spirit, intellect and mind we can easily discover these laws, which get data of the outer phenomenal world furnished by our senses and sense organs. Where the senses and sense organs are not under control, the use of inner divine instruments, particularly the immaterial and immortal soul is the least and laws of God or Vedic Rta have no significance for such individuals. As Socrates said in Plato's Phaedrus that human soul can be divided into three kinds-god like soul-light and divine, fit to go up like a bird and reach the abode of Divine. The other two kinds are compared to two horses. In the one case one horse is disciplined, under control and the other horse is fond of enjoyment and is not under the control of its master. In the second case both horses are undisciplined, beyond control and do not know which path to follow being rudderless. Thus human senses provide different data of the same outer world owing to quality of the soul the individual possesses. Vedas refer to the different qualities in human beings owing to the effect of three gunas i.e. sattavic, rajasic and tamasic, which are present in each individual in different proportions.
The ethics and moral of the Nature are absolute and certain as mathematics. There is no inconsistency or dishonesty in the functioning of Sun, planets, stars and other objects of the universe including air, ether, fire etc. A large number of universal moral laws of truth, honesty, cooperation, love, welfare and other virtues can be derived from their selfless functioning, which finally result in the welfare of mankind. Even the Vedic philosophy of enlightened liberalism i.e. Idd Nan Mmam- nothing for self all for society, is an a-priori principle derived from the functioning of the divine Nature as supreme Mother. These stars, planets and other objects perform their welfare activities for the benefit of not only the mankind on this earth but also six other communities of men. These six communities of devas, pitries, gandharvas and others who live in other parts of the Brahamand, which our gross body with its senses is not aware of, but known to our divine soul. It is not only Vedas but also holy Koran refers to these communities of men like angel’s etc., living in other parts of the universe beyond our vision. Socrates had also referred to gods living beyond this earth, though without mentioning the number of such communities. The human soul when reaches a stage of perfection, beauty, wisdom, goodness and every other excellence moves up into a region above where gods dwell. These divine qualities the soul acquires while performing selfless work based on enlightened liberalism, while serving all the members of society particularly the weak, poor and deserving.
Thus the law of Nature leads to divine concept of Nishkama Karma, which is a noble philosophy of selfless work without any attachment and infatuation to matter and desire of its fruit or result as a part of one's moral duty. This a-priori principle and divine truth is the main theme of the celestial song Bhagavad Gita and is referred there in as Karma Yoga – the path of selfless action. Mahatma Gandhi followed Gita's Karma Yoga of selfless action in its true spirit. This provided him immense physical energy, moral and divine strength to pursue the path of non- violence of the strong and succeeded in achieving his goal of attaining Independence of India from the oppressive and divisive British rule of about 200 years. The British, who ruled for about two centuries, finally left India as friends and not enemies. In fact by only following Vedic metaphysics and Rta, the entire mankind on this earth can live as friends and even as spiritual brothers and sisters in harmony and unity. If the entire mankind on this earth follow these laws of moral excellence, the kingdom of God described in holy Bible or Gandhi ji's Ram rajya and St. Augustine's De Civitas Dei (City of God) comes nearer to us. At present in many parts of the world some people are following the concept of violence of the weak against the law of Nature and this has led to wide spread belief in terrorism and senseless killings of their own spiritual brothers and sisters. It is in this background that Vedas say not following these cosmic laws is misery and even death.
Vedic Rsis and Munnies discovered certain major noble activities of Prakrti viz., providing light and knowledge by dispelling darkness and ignorance. Symbolically they assigned this activity to Surya Deva (the Sun god) and power, strength and energy in the Nature for creating stability, equilibrium and discipline to Indra Deva. The word Indra is derived from Indha a Ra – i.e. one who provides constant fuel in the form of strength and energy to the entire universe and even cosmos- both gross and subtle. If the spirit of God which comes to Prakrti through the cosmic Word AUM, the over all custodian of this spirit on behalf of supreme Father Brahma and supreme Mother Prakrti is the subtle and formless Indra deva. It is for this reason that in Rig-Veda Indra deva is the most important formless being of light amongst 33 devas.
Another most important and major activity of Prakrti is to provide both material and spiritual welfare to all the animate life on this earth. Vedic metaphysicists found this in various physical phenomena and functioning of objects in the Nature, like formation of clouds and consequent rain, ether, air etc., and symbolically assigned the welfare activities of these forces of nature to Vayu, Ashvinau, Ribhu and other devas. Lastly they found the characteristic of selfless service to the entire mankind and other animate life both in the divine Nature and benign mother Earth. It was based on the functioning of Prakrti that four noble Varnas-divine professions of Brahmin, Kashtriya, Vaish and Shudra were discovered by Vedic Rsis through their research of these a-priori principles of Vedic Rta. For maintaining social and moral order, Vedic metaphysicists discovered these four noble professions as ordained by God. They devised a comprehensive education system for allotting these professions and social duties to noble Aryans on the principle of Idd Nan Mmam-nothing for self, all for society. The allocation of these Varna (divine profession/vocation) was based on merit, aptitude, capacity and ability.
To achieve this noble aim, they devised three- tier education system. Till the age of 5 years of the child, the mother is the teacher. There after up to the age of 8 years father is the teacher. After the age of 8 years regular studies in the school under a preceptor are commenced. This education could last till the age of 48 years for obtaining the highest degree of Aditya and the second highest degree of Rudrai could be obtained at the age of 36 years. However, the first regular degree of Brhamacharya is obtained at the age of 24 years. After joining the Vidyalaya- place of education or school, at the age of 8 years and studying elementary sciences, mathematics with algebra, social sciences, music, military science, physical exercises along with Brahma's divine knowledge, the first main examination could be held after 6 to 8 years of studies. Those who do not qualify are to be allotted the task and duties of unskilled workers and assigned the noble Varna of Shudra. Again those failing to qualify next or second main examination are to be assigned the profession relating to agriculture, trade etc., as Vaish Varna. The third examination after studying and obtaining advanced knowledge and requisite proficiency in all the ten sciences, mathematics, social sciences, military science, material, spiritual and divine knowledge etc; is to be held at the age of 24 years. Those who qualify get degree of Brahmacharya. These degree holders of both sexes are assigned the duties of Kashtriya Varna like officers of the defence forces, bureaucrats, ministers, rulers etc. Their main duty is to protect the individuals belonging to other three divine varna against any enemy action and also from others belonging and pursuing non divine professions like, smugglers, marplots, exploiters, adulterators, bribe takers etc. The scientists also are assigned the Kshatriya Varna after obtaining the degree. Those who fail in this examination at the age of 24 years are assigned the duties of industrialists-Ribhu who are advised to produce ships, aircraft and all kinds of Ratha (vehicles) moving in the air, water and on the surface of the earth. They are advised to manufacture such vehicles for national and international trade with the help of scientists and bring prosperity for the mankind. It is apparent for the prosperity of the mankind global trade on the path of Rta and Dharma has been advised in the Vedas.
However, some young men and women may prefer to study further to get higher degrees of Rudrai and Aditya by studying and specializing various subjects till the ages of 36 years and 48 years respectively. These young men and women are assigned Brahmin Varna. Some of the degree holders may opt for teaching profession, priest hood etc.; after the age of 24 years. They are also allocated Brahman Varna. Their main duties are to spread Brahma’s knowledge i.e. para jnan or higher knowledge of soul, spirit, Prakrti, God and spiritual and material knowledge amongst other three divine varna. A number of hymns in the Vedas do indicate that the Brahmins should also make efforts to spread higher divine knowledge amongst avarnas, vritras and bribe takers so that they leave non-divine activities and become useful to the society. Thus in the Vedas Chatvar Varna Ashram of four divine professions is based on merit, capacity, ability and aptitude and not on birth. In Rig-Veda there is no mention which Varna is superior or inferior amongst these four divine professions. In one family all four Varna could be there i.e. father as Kashtriya, one son Shudra and the other two sons could be Vaish and Brahmin.
However, Vedic metaphysics is very emphatic in describing those who do not follow Rta or Vratani tend to follow non-divine professions owing to lack of knowledge and become members of 5th non-divine class of avarnas, vritras, kimidin etc. Such persons performing these non-divine activities like charging exploitative profits, bribe takers, smugglers and non-virtuous activities, evil minded and corrupt would like to lead a life of luxury, affluence, sensual and transitory pleasures and material enjoyment. These non-divine people even doubt about the existence of Rta, soul, spirit and God. They will be giving material reasons based on sense perception to find hundreds of faults in the working of God, gods, devas and even divine Nature. They consider that the entire animate life is due to the mutual union of male and female. God has no role in procreation and hence the entire creation is based on lust. They do not find any thing wrong, sinful and evil in leading a life based on lust, greed and transitory pleasure. They have no concept of right activity or abstinence from evil activity.
Even the divine concept of Nishkam Karma- selfless activity based on nothing for self all for society, is good and noble so long as their pursuit of wealth and pleasure is not adversely affected as this blind pursuit becomes more an addiction with then than a necessity. Highest limit of enjoyment is sensuous pleasure and their concept of status is based more on false ego, social recognition, hypocrisy and arrogance than on noble social and moral principles. They try to amass tons of money by fair and foul means and proudly justify as right economic activity and perfect noble and spiritual means by grossly distorting scriptures. Their worship of God is for ostentation preferably in the presence of ignorant public to gain social recognition, respectability. For many politicians bereft of Vedic knowledge of Rta, it is to create vote bank. They do not mind disturbing the cosmic order by exploiting freely the mother earth and supreme mother Prakrti. For many of such persons earth is a quarry and they go on removing gold, silver, marble, granite stones, precious wood and continue creating pollution, environmental hazards on this globe unmindful of their social and moral responsibility towards the mankind. Rsis and muunies of yore had obviously anticipated such unsociable, immoral and evil activities of the 5th non-divine class. They gave us highly spiritual, ethical and social philosophy and told us unequivocally that ignorance of Rta and not following these would lead to complete social, moral and physical disorder in the world.
Each Vedic Rta is complete in itself and no further evolution in these laws is possible. These are for once and ever. If any Rta is different for different periods of history, region or country, it is not Rta. These laws applicable universally and for all periods to come in the future as well. Tampering and transgressing these laws is misery and death (Y.V. 25- 13 and A.V. 3-30-4). As these laws are derived from the Book of Nature, all animate life that follow these in their right spirit will be well integrated psychologically and spiritually with subtle Nature and its gross form- the Universe and its environments. Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book tells us how well the animals, birds and others follow the laws of Nature and find themselves extremely satisfied in those environments of the forests with rivers, streams, mountains, hills since they all lead mostly need based life in harmony with nature. The problem of deviating from the Vedic Rta is more with human beings that tend to exceed the limits of material possession both in their thoughts and actions.
Vedas have no mythology like the two didactic books Ramayana, Mahabharta and other scriptures. The ancient seers and sages had created symbolic and innocent mythology for conveying the message of “follow Rta and assist your Supreme Father- the formless and ineffable Brahma and supreme Mother- divine Prakrti” in maintaining cosmic order. Such symbolic and innocent mythology can be compared to Socrates description of two horses or birds and the charioteer with two wings in the context of human immortal soul, which is the real self of the individual (Plato's Phaedrus). In the Vedas this symbolic mythology is like formless Varun deva being described as the protector of Rta (A.V.4-5-6) or Indra deva who slew 99 Vritras- the forces of evil, who were stopping the free flow of water for the people living in the lower region (R.V.10-89-6, 7). While Sama Veda 913 refers to 99 sources of evil, which enter the gross body through our senses, sense organs and outward looking mind, various other hymns refer to 99 mythological Vritras, who belong to non-divine class professing ignoble professions.
The terms used in the Vedas for various kinds of Vritras are Rakshasas, Kimidin, Yatudhani, meaning demons, marplots, sorcerers, magicians, bribe takers etc., and also those who give bribe as material bait like tamasic gifts with vested interests to get their material jobs/ works done. Such persons do not follow laws of God and spread evil, corruption and also confusion in society. There is a prayer in the Vedas to enable us to know these laws and also give us strength that we follow these Rta. Rig- Veda 2-25-5 and 8-89-3, 5 has another prayer to God," I have deviated from your cosmic laws for want of moral strength, I went astray. O, Lord have mercy on me and for my sins do not punish others." This prayer with a social message gives a clear indication that by deviating from the path of Rta, one creates misery not only for him self but also for other members of society. Those who create social, moral and physical pollution or follow the path of violence like terrorists etc, fall in this category. Thus, not following the laws of God is a social and moral crime against others and a spiritual sin.
Rig-Veda 10-53-8 enjoins that the followers of Rta will live happily for about 100 years along with other persons who are honest and virtuous. Such persons overcome stormy river of senses, work cautiously and overcome all obstacles (Y.V. 35-10). Such honest individuals do not face gloom from their children. Rig Veda 1-110-1 even goes to the extent that the entire Earth (Prithvi) is upheld by stern Rta, lofty Satya (absolute truth), Diksha (dedicated service to the God), Tapah (holy and spiritual fire) and prayer. This also implies spontaneous rightness observable in the majestic movement of stars, recurrence of seasons, the unswerving alterance of day and night. By following Rta, plants bear sweetness, night and dawn become sweet, bright days provide us comforts and knowledge, even dust becomes sweet with fragrance and Sun sends sweetness to all including plants (Rig Veda 4-25-5, 1-90-6,8 and Y.V.13-27 to 29). Mundaka Upanishad ordains that the Vedic preceptors and savants should not impart divine knowledge of Brahma as contained in the Vedas to the impure and those who do not obey the laws of God. Those opposed to Rta and Satya produce for themselves deep abyss of sufferings (R.V.1-5-20, 4-5-5, 5-51-2). By ignoring the two Vedic concepts i.e. Rta and Idd Nan Mmam the individuals can precipitate cosmic and social disorder. Since Brahma is merciful God, He has provided certain tolerance limits in following these laws. He gives enough opportunities and scope to human beings to appreciate and understand the significance of Rta, so that individuals could follow these to avoid misery to them and other human beings as well as the entire animate life.
The eminent Dutch philosopher Baruch Spinoza (1632-77) in his Ethics describes laws of God as laws of necessity for human beings for their happiness and welfare. He has, however, lamented that such laws and their understanding has virtually disappeared in the world. He attributes this disappearance mainly due to the wide spread philosophy of materialism to which these laws clash. Unfortunately the philosophy of materialism in all its various forms i.e. socialism, communism, naked materialism of the ancient Charvakas style etc., has now spread like wild fire throughout the world. The human nature as observed by many materialists philosophers like Hobbes, Machiavelli and others that men are fickle, deceitful, cowardly, avaricious, vindictive, hypocrite and selfish is now being observed as absolute truth in respect of those who follow the path of materialism, blind pursuit of money, power and status. In this atmosphere bereft of Vedic Rta, the vulgar and filthy rich no longer consider material excesses as sin. Amongst the deficient billions of men, women and children are now leading life worse than animals. Some individuals below poverty line were found scrounging food in rat holes in the open fields, particularly in some parts of South India. The inner eyes of the excessive rich and particularly those who resort to ostentatious worship of God, is still refusing to open to Vedic Rta, Plato's Forms and Ideas, Spinoza's laws of necessity and Chinese divine Li.
Immanuel Kant the idealist philosopher of Germany had even mentioned that prayer to God is good if it upholds the laws of Nature, otherwise it is total selfishness. God likes those who follow His laws and not those who pray day and night for a son, house, money, cure of their diseases and all kinds of mundane things. Buddha, who built his metaphysics without God and soul, still found Vedic Rta extremely useful in his ethical philosophy of Dhamma, Panch sheel and Ashta Marga-eight fold path. Many sages and seers like Vyasa, Yajnavalkya, Kautalya (philosopher, writer and statesman) and others used Rta in social, legal and political institutions and also in describing certain principles of ideal human conduct to avoid exploitation of the Nature, earth and other animate life.
Under the influence of ancient Charvakas and later materialists, the drift in the concept of Rta started as moralising vagueness and with the passage of time this concept virtually disappeared. At present very few Hindus know that Vedas contain Rta or Vratani as a major subject and a small numbers of Hindus who know about this concept of Rta, do not give any major importance to these cosmic laws of social and moral order. Thus by and large in the moral, social, political and economic conduct of Hindus, these laws of God are completely absent. As most of the Upanishads clearly mention that Dharma is Rta and if this didactic description is carried to its logical conclusion, it would show that in Hindu religion as it exists today-highly organized, hierarchical, ceremonial and orthodox, Dharma (righteousness) is almost missing. In spite of this Hindus take pride in describing it not as a religion like Islam, Christianity but as Hindu Dharma. Thus the word dharma continues to remain as a spiritual, moral, social and religious adhesive for many Hindus even though the spirit of dharma is largely missing. This gives them a strange feeling of self-righteousness without being actually righteous in their conduct.
The Vedic Rta constitutes the bridge joining three streams of divine, spiritual and material knowledge to create the Unity. These three streams of Knowledge also form another Vedic Trinity. In the scriptures of Buddhism, Islam, Christianity, Zoroastrians and Sikhs these laws of social and moral order are also prominent. The holy Bible has many such laws. A few can be mentioned for illustration. “Having created jealousy, social disorder, exploitation of the earth, nature and mankind, a rich man shall hardly enter the kingdom of heaven. "A good tree bringeth forth good fruit, can a corrupt tree bring forth a good fruit? You will be known by your fruits." Avoid laying your treasures on the earth and lay your treasures in heaven." You cannot serve your God and Mammon together. A corrupt man is like a burial place/tomb (whited sepulchers) which may appear beautiful but are within full of dead man's bones and are unclean". The famous ten Commandments of Bible are more like Vedic Rta. The in-depth study of Bible would show that it contains a large number of such laws of God relating to truth, love, cooperation, non-violence, against adultery and other negativity. Bible is a sacred testimony and spiritual declaration that all types of corruption and ignoring such laws (commandments) of God would lead to chaos and destruction of the self and also society.
The concept of seven has some sanctity in the Vedas as these Shrutis prescribe seven streams of knowledge based on functioning of divine Nature and gross Universe. Vedic seers and sages seemed to have found the concept of seven in many spiritual and divine activities. According to Rig-Veda 1-58-7, the soul has seven means to get outside knowledge of the phenomenal world i.e. five senses, mind and intellect. There are seven rays of the Sun consisting of seven colours (R.V.1-62-4), which the modern Physicists describe through the word VIBGYOR- violent, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange and red. There are seven meters (Chhanda) for each Vedic hymn or rik like Gyatri, Ushnavi, Anusthup etc. There are seven Worlds in the Brahamand- both visible and non-visible cosmos (R.V.1-146-1). Holy Koran refers to seven heavens and seven communities in harmony in the visible and non-visible cosmos (LXXI-15). There are seven subtle Pranas (vital breaths), which provide heat energy to all animate life. Vedic seers and sages name these as prana, apana, udana, sytra, atma, koorma and samana. These vital breaths consist of subtle particles (R.V.1-71-7). In the Vedas there is also mention of three more Pranas consisting of gross atoms. Again there is a mention of seven notes of music when in harmony create sweet and melodious sound, seven colours of flame of holy fire (R.V 1-58-7). From this concept of Seven, Vedas tell us that out of various diversities in the Nature, human beings can achieve harmony, cooperation and unity. In fact unity of soul, spirit, body and matter is also an important subject of the Vedas. In all animate and inanimate life spirit and matter go together. Holy Koran also refers to this law of Allah- the merciful and benevolent God with a divine message,” If Allah wanted He could have made us part of one religion, one community but He desired differently." Holy Koran’s injunction is clearly meant to create unity in diversity by providing divine sanctity to the noble concept. This concept of Seven in the Nature and universe was applied by the metaphysicists in the Vedic education system and symbolically assigned this attribute of Prakrti to Saraswati devi. She is the over all in- charge of seven streams of knowledge and presides over education. She is also one of the 33 formless devas and devis of Prakrti and also presides over Music with seven notes in harmony. Thus Vedic Vidya or para jnan – higher knowledge of divinity, spirit and matter is based on Vedic Rta relating to seven. Only when seven streams of knowledge are known, one can understand the Supreme Reality in all its forms and aspects. They named this supreme reality as Brahma and the student who is keen to acquire Brhama jnan was described as Brhamachari. To acquire complete knowledge of seven streams of Vidya, the education system stretches till the age of 48 years of the student, when the degree of Aditya is awarded. Aditya in the Vedas is akin to devas or gods.
Thus these seven streams of knowledge cover complete jnan, vijnan and ajnan. Jnan is divine knowledge, Vijnan is spiritual knowledge and Ajnan is only material knowledge. Material knowledge bereft of jnan and vijnan is avidya or ignorance but when part of these it is Vidya. These seven streams of knowledge cover ten sciences, military science, social sciences, music, philosophy and metaphysics. Based on the functioning of Nature, concept of seven and Rta, Vedic education aims at creating unity in diversity while harmonising spirit and matter, body and soul, a-priori and a-posteriori knowledge. With a view to emphasise the divinity in the concept of seven, Vedic seers and sages provided mother hymn Gyatri mantra, seven times in the four Vedas. In this mother hymn there is a prayer to God that during our three stages of being awake, asleep and even in our dreams, also referred as gross, subtle and casual states, we should be blessed with complete knowledge of the Supreme Reality so that we spread the same in society and shine like Savitar deva-the Sun.
The religious mythology refers to seven streams of water emerging from the hair locks of lord Shiva and then converging into one big stream named as Ganga- the river Ganges. In the Vedas word Ganga also appears but with no mythology. The seven streams of knowledge when merge and constitute Vedic Vidya, para Jnan or higher knowledge that stage is referred as Ganga- the river of knowledge. Rig Veda 1-174-2 says," after acquiring the knowledge of seven streams, even seven fortifications of the wicked persons following non-divine activities and professions, get destroyed and enemies become friends.” Thus Adityas who are akin to devas and gods, when they spread knowledge as preceptors, even wicked persons start becoming virtuous and friendly.
Mahatma Gandhi followed this concept of divine and spiritual knowledge both as a Sankhya yogi and Karma yogi as described in Bhagavad Gita and gave his philosophical theory of non-violence of the strong based on functioning of Prakrti. Vedas do mention that Prakrti- the divine Nature is extremely powerful but non-violent. By following the path of non-violence of the strong Gandhi ji virtually destroyed all the fortifications of the British Empire in India and when the Britishers finally left India, they went as friends. Even after five decades of Indian independence the relations between India and Britain are largely very cordial. Thus an individual who has complete knowledge of Rta acquires divine power and spiritual strength to spread universal friendship and brotherhood what Vedas describes as Vishwa Bandhutva. Swami Vivekananda did his best to establish Vedic universal brother hood on the philosophy of Vedanta, which is based more on Upanishads than Brahamanas- the ceremonial and ritualistic part of Vedas. Vedanta literally means Ved-anta i.e. last portion of Vedas that is more based on philosophy and metaphysics.
Some learned persons amongst Hindus have found that from the later portion of Vedas, all the 108 Upanishads have been derived. While compiling these Upanishads along with certain commentary, the lovers of wisdom have also included some philosophical mythology like the metaphysical discussions between Nachiketa-a child student of Jnan Yoga with his intellectual queries and Yama deva. Yama deva is one of the 33 Prakrti devas in the Vedas. He is bestowed with the power of withdrawal of spirit from the gross body and merging it back in Prakrti. The soul being divine and immortal remains independent of his preview. When the Vedic philosophy of Rta spreads in any society, the non-divine class of avarnas, vritras, bribe givers and takers etc., starts disappearing like a mote of dust (Yajur Veda. 2-30). Night and day stay in the law of God. They obstruct not each other, nor they stand still. They travel alternately guided by the radiant Sun, combined in purpose though of different forms. (R.V 1-113-4.) This Rta further says that time to start work is from the dawn under the supervision of Usha devi and the work should continue during the day guided by her radiant father- the Sun. All work should be done for the welfare of all animate and inanimate life on this earth. Vedas do not recognise any work that is not for the welfare of the mankind and other animate and inanimate life on the principle of Idd Nan Mmam or enlightened liberalism. Such a work is idleness according to Bhagavad Gita and as such sin. If Vedic philosophy is taken to its logical conclusion, using earth as quarry and its over exploitation is not only an evil activity but also sinful. This becomes a cause of pollution, deforestation, social disorder and even confusion in society.
Time is precious. It starts from dawn and continues till night comes for your rest. This Law of God or Vedic Rta is also found in holy Koran, which says whenever you are free; get busy in some constructive and socially useful work. Idling during the day is against laws of God and night is only for rest. Thus "early to rise and early to bed” is part of Rta or law of necessity. Many followers of non-divine professions like thieves, smugglers, bribe takers and other avarnas would be hardly following this Rta. Most of the sages, seers, learned persons who are the follower of Vedic metaphysics would be found rising from their beds during dawn. Since Vedic Rta have certain tolerance limits owing to local conditions, climate, weather etc., suitable adjustment becomes necessary in places near the north and south pole, higher altitudes etc.
Abide in your hole and enjoy material cum spiritual pleasure (R.V.1-191-6). Do not disturb the holes of others including venomous creatures like, snakes and others. Allow all kind of life to live peacefully at their pleasure on this earth, which is benign mother of all animate life. The life in any form has its utility, find out their usefulness as all kind of life has a role to perform for the maintenance of cosmic balance and order. It is perhaps for this reason the scientists and environmentalists tell us, if all the snakes in the world are killed, rodents of all kind of species will multiply so fast that food availability for human beings will start depleting, apart from spread of many diseases. Even the Chinese experiment during 1980's of killing birds near the airports for air safety and for higher food production finally led to drop in food production and was abandoned. Vedic Rta make it very clear that with one seed, the benign mother earth blesses us with hundreds of seeds and some small percentage of all seeds and fruits is meant for those animals and birds who help us in the maintenance of cosmic order. The laws of God are unequivocal, well defined and all kinds of life to live peacefully on this planet and provide a share of food to them. The animals, birds’ etc., contribute in fertilising even the degraded and barren soil, killing harmful insects affecting the plants and even killing the rodents in the field who destroy the food crops.
From the phenomenon of light and shade in the Natur, Vedic metaphysicists discovered that the entire universe in its gross form is a cosmic illusion. It is our senses, which make this illusion look as real. Nature and the Universe are shadow of the eternal light and described this divine shadow as Maya and eternal light as Brahma- the only Reality. They described Brahma as "Sat, Chit, Anand" – supreme Reality, Consciousness and Bliss. Based on Vedic Rta and their functioning in Prakrti along with seven modes of knowledge, this phenomenon of Cosmic Illusion became an integral part of the philosophy of Advait Vedantists like Sankracharya. According to such absolute monists and pure idealists, in the phenomenal world reality and illusion, truth and untruth, good and evil, perfect and imperfect, precision and imprecision and other extremely divergent and opposite phenomena move freely. Only with higher Vedic knowledge, one can segregate truth, reality, perfection and good. Lower intellectual knowledge of matter, senses, which is avidya, will invariably take you towards illusion, untruth, mirage, transitory pleasures of senses and other kinds of evil.
Thus in the material knowledge it is the ignorance which is parading in the guise of intellectual knowledge. At this stage of intellectual and material knowledge bereft of divine and spiritual knowledge, individuals find untruth in truth, reality in illusion and reason in highly unreasonable and selfish arguments and vice versa. The cosmic powerful illusion Maya is the material cause of light and shadow in Prakrti and the universe. This illusion gets more vehement under the subtle tamasic guna of passivity and stupor. The individuals in the blind pursuit of money, false ego, impure thoughts, power for selfish interests have great difficulty in understanding this divine and metaphysical concept of Maya, since this material world, matter, children, sensual life create a golden disc and blinds the reality from their vision. However, its vehement effect goes on reducing when you acquire more of sattavic gunas of purity, truth, love, selfless service, moderation in thought and actions. Finally it disappears when the effect of all guna become nil and you reach the stage of shuniya sattava.It is a stage beyond sattavic guna when you acquire bliss and no material activity, thought, human relations affect you in the performance of your selfless action. This stage further takes you towards moksha and finally you become one with God-"aham Brahma asi"- my "real self" is God. The six schools of Indian philosophy describe this stage differently as Turiya, Kaivalya, Moksha, Mukti etc. It is a stage when you can communicate with your soul and get free from the cycle of birth and death.
Since Maya works through its veiling power, it creates the difference between the seer and the seen and becomes non-existent in those stages, which Patanjali describes as Kaivalya, and Sankrachara refers to it as Turiya. These stages and also other philosophical terms were used in sad Darshna to denote the stage of supreme consciousness when a person can communicate with his real self- the immortal soul. It is the stage of complete harmony of one's lower body self with the higher "real self". Sankracharya has preferred to use the term Vidya -para jnan that is akin to Vedic degree of Aditya.A person who specialises only in divine knowledge about God or spiritual knowledge about spirit, Prakrti, Universe etc., or material knowledge of matter, senses, perceptions etc., is not able to reach the stage of Turiya. Well-harmonized material, spiritual and divine knowledge is Vedic Vidya. The Vedic rsis and munnies have come to this conclusion through the study of these laws of God. Essentially these cosmic laws are the commandments of God conveyed through the Book of Nature since the universe, world and Prakrti are God Himself. HE is veiled in Prakrti and pervades all space- both gross and subtle as an abiding Reality. Thus in the stages of Vidya, Turiya or super consciousness the seer and seen are united and illusory effect of Maya disappears.
Believing in God or even not believing in the Supreme Reality is not very important. Buddha did not believe in God. Kapila Rsi of the Indian school of philosophy Sankhya darshna also did not believe in the existence of God more as an agnostic than as an atheist. The founder of Jainism, Mahavira and many others also did not find God in their ethical metaphysics. The eminent philosopher, mathematician and scientist of modern period and Nobel Prize winner- Bertrand Russell was an agnostic. Still all these persons left behind their highest ethical metaphysics. Thus belief in God is less important than firm belief in Vedic Rta or the laws of God/Nature for maintaining social and moral order. However, by not believing in Rta and not following these permanent truths "Ritam Satyam", great harm can come in the universe and also in the society where majority of its members scoff at these divine laws. Buddha though did not believe in Vedic metaphysical God, still Buddhist Dhamma is largely based on Vedic Rta. Dhamma is more like what you observe with your small children, when they try to play with electric switches or go near the swimming pools or jump in deep water or move towards fire, out of child like curiosity. To save human beings who are the children of supreme Father Brahma and supreme Mother Prakrti, from great harm, Rta are created by God and taught by the supreme mother Prakrti through its functioning and by providing Book of Nature. Thus Vedic Rta show the mercy, kindness, love and affection of Nirguna Brahma and Saguna Prakrti. In the Vedas nirguna is ineffable i.e. beyond attributes and saguna is having finite attributes.
The Vedic artha is more like meta-economics or development economics based on harmony and complete integration of material and spiritual principles. Pursuit of wealth and enjoyment is not prohibited, provided the same is on the path of Rta and Dharma. Any material pursuit by ignoring Rta or Spinoza's laws of necessity and also Dharma-the path of righteousness can become the cause of social and moral disorder in society. The Chinese metaphysicists Lu-Hsiang (1139-93) also conveyed a similar message about the pursuit of wealth and enjoyment provided those are balanced with Divine Li. Vedas thus paved the way for meta-economics which many learned persons in the West described it Buddhist economics as Buddha perfected Artha in his Dhamma and also Ashata marga-eight fold path of virtues. With the rise of materialism and steady decline of Vedic and Buddhist economics, a stage has arrived when the entire mankind in this world is now worried about the rapidly deteriorating physical, social and moral conditions and environments. The spread of all kinds of pollution, environmental hazards, social tensions, moral degradation, wide economic disparities owing to modern economics where “every thing foul is useful”, addiction to consumerism and desire to live a life of all kinds of material excesses have created a great confusion, chaos, jealousy and an atmosphere of naked selfishness in society.
Sun is firm, static and upholder of the universe due to its many characteristics including gravitational force (R.V.1-115-4 and 5-81-2.). The Sun's rays revolve like a deer (5-75-11) and it is the life giver of the world's animate life. Vedas enjoin instead of running after the fake gurus and prophets, sit and do pilgrimage of your inner self-the divine and immortal atma. This “real Self" of the individuals is firm and upholder of one's body and source of light during day and night. Guru Nanak had described the pilgrimage of your real "Self" as equal to 64 pilgrimages of sacred places. In India, there were perhaps 64 sacred places and towns in the 15th century, which were considered sacred by Hindus and other followers of Guru Nanak. In fact, human senses and outwards looking mind (etani) have a tendency to switch off the candle of inner light so that in the spiritual darkness, the senses (Indriyas) and etani could resort to short time pleasure and enjoyment of the illusory material world of Maya. Many sacred places have now become as tourist attractions with glamorous temples, five star hotels, picnic spots etc. The sanctity of these places of pilgrimage is rapidly vanishing.
If you bring the senses under control and make the mind as inward looking, the eternal light of the soul again gets switched on and one moves towards bliss, peace and detachment while working selflessly for the welfare of all animate and inanimate life. In the Vedas and Bhagavad Gita, detachment is not renouncing the activities but renouncing the desire for all kind of material excesses and infatuation. Extreme of poverty and affluence can never take a person towards detachment. It is a stage when one gets involved selflessly on the Vedic philosophy of Idd Nan Mmam or Bhagavad Gita's nishkama karma in the divine, spiritual and social activities by renouncing short term pleasures of luxury, enjoyment etc., The blind pursuit of money, infatuation for the wife and children, power for self, vested interest and false ego are great hurdles in achieving the state of detachment. However, Vedic moderation, middle path of Buddha and golden mean of ancient Greeks philosophers do help in achieving this stage. Those who attain such a stage of detachment through nishkama karma, they soon get integrated with Nature and move towards simplicity and need based living.
Those individuals who are detached but actively involved in the selfless work know that we are all part of the same God. They also know that each of us constitute one living cell of His formless subtler than the subtle Body, just like we have billions of living gross cells in our gross body. The formless Brahma has millions of eyes, hands, ears and other subtle organs to look after the welfare of all creatures being supreme and merciful God. He lives in the subtlest of the subtle part of our hearts. Vedic Rta enjoin us that we should keep our hearts neat and clean by not allowing filthy and evil thoughts to get into our inner self through our senses and sense organs. An in-depth study would reveal that Vedic Rta relating to beauty, virtue, knowledge, welfare have been derived from the functioning of the Sun, which has been accorded the status of two devas viz. Savitar and Surya, out of 33 formless beings of light.
A few such cosmic laws are briefly mentioned:
Prakrti is always truthful and transparent. She being our supreme mother and all the human beings are her loving children, the Book of Nature tells us to be always truthful and transparent. Benign mother earth is constantly doing selfless work and service to the entire animate life from plants, animals, birds, fishes and human beings on the Vedic philosophy of Idd Nan Mmam- nothing for self all for her children. Thus Vedic Idd Nan Mmam or enlightened liberalism is an important Rta. The trees that bend remain straight and do not break during storms, swift breeze and hurricanes. Non- bending trees, which tend to remain straight, get soon uprooted even during a minor storm. Vedic rsis and later many learned people found that pride hath a fall and humility is a virtue, which is ever lasting.
The trees provide shade to both good and evil persons alike as well as to animals, birds and others including their own saplings. Again all the trees, which bear sweet and good fruits normally, bend and those that do not give fruit at all tend to remain straight. Thus Vedic Rta decrees avoid all false pride, ego, body consciousness and snobbery. Cultivate humility and bear good fruits in the form of noble children. Many other Rta are derived from the behavior pattern of trees and plants. These Rta relate to birth, growth, decay and rebirth. All human activities should be based on without making any distinction based on caste, creed and sex. As children do not belong to you and only come through you, equal benefits and opportunities are provided to all of them. Infatuation and attachment to children is not advised. Never give love to them as a loan to be returned in your old age. Give love to them as sattavic charity or donation not with any idea of return. After following the laws contained in the Book of Nature, it is a common observation that even animals give love to their offspring, feed them and give them necessary training on behalf of God without any idea or thought of return.
Again wild plants spread faster and later on some times these are blasted. Useful plants grow steadily, systematically and benefit the human beings and other animate life. Even when these useful plants and trees die and fall down gracefully, these are still useful and also leave behind their good seeds. Their leaves are useful to animals, seeds to birds and their wood useful to many as source of cooking and heat energy. Wild plants even animals do not eat and are very often destroyed through burning lest their evil seeds spread very fast. The wild, false and socially harmful rumors spread very fast and even become a source of social disorder some times and need to be blasted by the wise men of society and other lovers of wisdom by bringing out the real truth. It is not enough to grow the saplings and plants with the help of seeds on a fertile soil, these need regular weeding to ensure that wild and useless plants do not grow around the useful plants in the form of parasites and retard the growth of fruit bearing plants. The same is true for the human beings from their birth, childhood, youth and old age. At all ages the weeds in the form of useless, unsociable, vindictive and materialistic thoughts which grow in the minds of human beings should be regularly weeded out with Vedic knowledge and also the a-priori knowledge known to the soul. The healthy and useful thoughts get infected with wasteful, sensuous and materialistic, corrupt and evil thoughts of extreme selfishness, which need to be weeded out regularly with Vedic philosophy and other divine scriptures. If this could be done under divine guidance of Adityas or Rudraias like the Vedic seers and sages, metaphysicists Sankracharya, Vivekananda of India or Socrates, Plato of the ancient Greeks, the weeding of wild, evil and wasteful thoughts will be faster and also perfect. A selfless and learned guru/preceptor keen to empty his / her knowledge to the disciples without the desire of any material gain should be searched. If such a search is unsuccessful and one fails to find any such perfect guru who is both divine and spiritual “gardener”, the study and understanding of Vedas, Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads and other holy scriptures of all other religions would also help in this weeding out of all wasteful and materialistic thoughts.
From the scriptures and also philosophies of various lovers of wisdom, a large number of such laws of necessity akin to Bible's Commandments can be found. Many of these learned persons found these laws from the movement of rivers. An individual's life is like a river – small at birth (a drop), narrowly contained within its limits by its two banks, flows quietly a long journey and in the end without any visible break it gets merged with the sea and gracefully as well as painlessly loses its individuality and restarts from a drop. Thus the life of the river continues. Again by merging of more streams and smaller rivers, it goes on becoming larger and larger and becomes extremely useful for all kind of animate life. All these streams, rivulets and the river itself pass through rocks, mountains, forests, deserts and many other obstacles without much struggling and find its path peacefully.
A large number of Rta emerge from this phenomenon of natural flow of river and its final merging in the ocean. Lao Tse – founder of Taoism observed " Be like water, soft, limpid, it finds its way through or under any obstacles. It just does not quarrel, it simply moves on." The Vedic Rta that emerge from this phenomenon of the flow of river are, moral law relating to selfless action (nishkam karma), the law of Karma and rebirth, which according to Kapila Rsi rules the world. The Vedantists however, find from this phenomenon, rebirth and continuity of life till Moksha (salvation) is achieved. The moral law of moderation or golden mean also is derived from the flow of river. Containing one self within limits by avoidance of all kinds of excesses- both affluence and deficiency by following middle path within certain tolerance limits. The river is useful so long as it remains within two banks and also continues to flow. The overflow of water leads to inundation, resulting in mass scale destruction of crops, uprooting of trees, damage to property and even animate life. If the water in the river becomes too less and the flow of water virtually stops, it leads to stagnation when it is not useful for crops, drinking by human beings and animals and even individuals can not take bath in that stagnant water. It even becomes cause of breeding insects, bacteria, mosquitoes etc. Thus utility of the river is the maximum within certain limits of flowing water while remaining within its two banks. Graceful growth of human beings from childhood to youth and old age without much struggling with the functioning of Nature, graceful death of the gross body etc., are all such moral laws.
The flow of water is always from the higher to lower level while containing latent energy in the form of hidden electricity. Vedic Rta enjoins that love and care should flow from the strong towards the weak i.e. towards the children and when they grow and become strong, they should look after the weaker sections- smaller children, old parents, weaker sections of society, sick and disabled. With the hidden energy of water in the form of electricity, a large number of benefits accrue to human beings. With the proper flow of love and care, which also contains a lot of latent social and moral energy in the form of nobility, virtue, affection, service, the same can bring immense benefits to human society and also to the entire mankind. Rama Krishna discovered another Rta from the rain- water, which never stands on high ground and rushes towards the lowest level. The selfless service with love and care should not wait but the same should rush towards the weak and needy. The grace of God remains in the hearts of those lowly (without vanity, pride and false ego) but drains down from the vain and proud. Their worship of God is only for social recognition and ostentation and not as a faith. Thus humility is the law of Nature and Vedic Rta. Those weak, humble, poor in spirits and with firm and unshakable faiths, by renouncing material desires of all excesses can seek God. Holy Bible has also a similar commandment, "You are dead to God, if you do not respond to the care and call of God and also if you do not follow His Rules".
In the Vedic metaphysics seed is male principle and soil as female principle. Bhagavad Gita says that God is the primordial seed. Even though formless and without any sex, God is usually described as "He" and Prakrti as "She". We get best fruits when both seeds and soil are healthy. When seed is good and capable of germination and also soil is fit and fertile to assist production, ideal results are achieved. If the seed does not germinate, even the best soil cannot produce the fruit. Thus Vedic Rta is very clear that for the non-pregnancy of good and healthy woman, there is some thing wrong with the male principle of seed. Vedas prescribe strict observance of continence during the period of student ship and before marriage. For getting healthy, truthful and God loving children for the family and society, a Brahmacharya should marry a Brahmachrani. Thus Vedas give great emphasis that both husband and wife should be preferably of equal intelligence, knowledge, education and merit.
There is also a mention that the animals, birds, fishes and all other animate life follow Rta, based on the light within them provided through the spirit of God in them. Rudyard Kiplings' Jungle Book describe beautifully the laws of jungle or forest laws conforming to laws of nature, which are understood, appreciated and followed by all animals, birds, reptiles and others living in the forest. This knowledge is available to the animals, birds and others on their birth as need-based knowledge and supplemented by their parents and even other animals. As regards human beings and their souls being largely omniscient, are born with the knowledge of four Vedas within them. Very often many human beings at very early age forget this divine knowledge under the influence of their senses, desires, matter, vested interest and false pride. This leads to social and moral disorder in the society. For creating order, harmony and righteousness in society, prophets, wise sages, seers, metaphysicists are born again and again in all ages, on this earth to guide the harassed humanity. However, the outward looking mind, which is highly turbulent under the influence of senses and sense organs in this vast ocean of matter, tends to ignore their noble teachings and thus human beings become their own enemies.
Kapila Rsi of Sankhya Darshna refers to Kriya Karma- what you sow, so shall you reap. Even if you have done no wrong in this life, you could still be suffering owing to past karma (good and bad deeds) of previous life/ lives. This law of retribution is Vedic Rta and according to Kapila Rsi, it works independently, is autonomous and abstract law. Vedic hymns make it very clear that both the supreme Father and supreme Mother Prakrti bestow their love, affection and care equally and most impartially to their children. As some individuals are their own enemies, the final effect of their love and affection may appear to be partial. Clouds give rain equally to the soil, if the soil is not well prepared, the rainwater does not benefit the crops on that soil. Sun gives light equally in all places, if material obstructions are provided, the Sun light may not reach there. Those who do not know well their divine Father as their perfect preceptor and supreme Mother Prakrti, and also do not follow Rta, Satya (truth), Dharma (righteousness), invariably feel partiality of God and Nature towards them. They overlook that God Himself follow Rta rigidly and Prakrti ensures uniformity in the application of these laws and keeps these transparent and permanent in all periods of the cosmic cycle i.e. one Kalpa
According to Atharva Veda (4-1-3) "from the bosom of the sacred word AUM, He brought forth the World. " Again" on high, below and every where He abides by His own laws." Doctrine of Mean-12 describes it metaphysically, "the moral law is found every where in the Nature and yet it is a secret, there is no place in the highest heavens above, nor in the deepest water below, where moral law is not to be found." The holy Koran 30-29 says " there is no altering in the laws of God's creation and all evils befall through the own faults of human beings and they grow despondent- stand firm to your faith and upright nature with which Allah has endowed man." All scriptures say follow these laws of necessity, which sustain us. These are immutable and eternal (R.V 1- 12-7 and 1-24-10).
The over all visible effect of the divine Nature is peace, silence, harmony and serenity. Golden laws of silence and grace are found abundantly in the Nature, hills, mountains, oceans, rivers, forests, deserts etc., These depict either silence, peace or give graceful harmonious sound. The non stop aimless speaking with jarring notes is peculiar to human beings who are either shallow from inside or have great inner vacuum owing to material and only intellectual knowledge in plenty but bereft of spiritual and divine knowledge. Such persons not only talk a lot but also try to attract others by putting on glamorous, shining and expensive clothes, use liberal amount of cosmetics and soon their internal hollowness, avidya, ajnan or ignorance dispels other people. Vedic Rta is " speak less, create peace within yourself and be graceful. “
The movement of earth, planets, sound waves electrons, protons and many other particles and objects in Nature are in circular motion. Even straight line is a part of a bigger circle. Through this phenomenon in Prakrti, the ancient sages discovered another Rta about the movement of human thoughts relating to love, hatred, harmony, discord etc., moving in a circular motion and coming back to the individuals with excellent results in case of love, harmony and cooperation. The other negative and evil thoughts bring back misery and hatred after completing the circular motion. Both these positive and negative thoughts not only come back after traversing a smaller or bigger circle but also become more vehement and acquire greater force and intensity. Some individuals being killed, maimed and injured on very petty issues which get supplemented with negative thoughts and actions is very common phenomenon of this circular motion, when such thoughts acquire greater force and intensity and blind the human thinking and reason.
Kautilya on the authority of scriptures, has mentioned in his treatise Arthashastra in the context of evil and corruption that a man's ruin of himself and his family starts appearing after a period of about 10 years or more based on degree of evil and corruption he/she resorts to. Such a person not only ruins his/her own family but also the children for whom he/she is custodian on behalf of God. Vedic metaphysics in various hymns, chants enjoin that the person who lead honest life of simplicity, moderation within limits, while conforming to Rta, get good children-both sons and daughters and are always happy. Others who do not follow Rta and life of moderation face gloom and utter darkness.
Moha i.e. attachment / infatuation to children is cause of trouble. The children have their own souls, karmaand thoughts. Vedas refer to children as God's children. Their parents are only the custodians and trustees of the children on behalf of God. It is parent’s duty to impart them good education, Vedic Vidya that should cover divine, spiritual and material knowledge. Sankracharya describes Vedic education as para and apara jnan- both higher and lower knowledge of God, soul, spirit, Nature and physical, social and military sciences. Thus Vedic Vidya includes metaphysics, philosophy, ethics, society and material knowledge of our surroundings through physical sciences. The parents should provide healthy and nourishing food to the children for their mental and physical growth, without any self- interest or expectations from them in return. The children will know their selfless duty towards parents and the elders based on Rta.
Holy Koran has a commandment "The Lord has decreed…that you be kind to parents. If either or both of them attain old age in your dwelling, show them no sign of impatience or contempt and address them with honour. May Lord bestow on them Thy mercy even as they cherished me in childhood and nursed me when I was infant"(17-18 to 24). Vedas enjoin all old persons that they should all maintain their peculiar beauty of this godly old age and let the wrinkles be not written upon the heart and the spirit should not grow old. The people in their young age should ensure that their love along with its latent energy should flow from the strong towards the weak. Khalil Gibran in his philosophical treatise " The Prophet" also has mentioned that the children do not belong to you. They only come through you and you are only the custodian on behalf of God for their proper bringing up, education and upright thoughts. They have their own thoughts, ideas and life to live. Kapila Rsi of the ancient India had unequivocally mentioned that do not get attached to matter and children. Know it that the world is not our permanent habitation.
The earth is enduring because it does not live for itself. From this eternal truth, Lao Tse in his treatise Tao Te Ching says," do not live only for your self existence.” Many cosmic laws relating to discipline and regularity, one learns from planets, Sun, Moon and the Earth. “ Be humble and you will remain entire, be bent, you will remain straight. Be vacant you will remain new. He who has little will receive and who has much will be embarrassed. The sage who keeps to the One, becomes standard to the world”(Tao Te Ching-XXII). Who so ever shall exalt himself shall be abased and who shall humble himself shall be exalted (St.Mathew 23-12). What so ever a man soweth that shall he reap. He that soweth to flesh reap corruption, but that soweth to the spirit shall reap life ever lasting (Gelatianas.VI-7, 8). Similar thoughts are contained in Yajur Veda 2-28. Plants take material from the earth and come back to it. The same happens to all human beings, animals and other animate life. We all come from God and go back to Him. Call Him by any name Brahma, the Absolute, Adrista (unseen cosmic Force), Supreme Truth and Reality. His subtle manifestation -the divine Prakrti and its gross form Universe also come from Him and finally goes back to Him. Kapila rsi found from the functioning of the Nature that attachment to any material things including children is slavery and bondage. This cosmic law leads to the philosophy of Bhagavad Gita relating to performance of one's duty selflessly, without bothering about the results. The earth being the Karma Bhoomi of all of us i.e. sacred land to perform our activities and remaining idle is sin as it is against the law of Nature. Hence not to be occupied is the same thing as not to exist. Any effort by modern science and economics to make human beings idle or work only for themselves is against Vedic Rta. Bhagavad Gita tells us that great harm can come to the universe if God stops working even for a short while. Prakrti, earth, planets, stars and even all kind of animate life, birds, animals and others work to maintain themselves and also to maintain the world order and ecological balance.
We may have any number of social, economic and political philosophies, theories, concepts and if these are bereft of laws of Nature, all these ideologies in whatever form would fail and bring anarchy and chaos closer to us. The collapse of various powerful dynasties in the ancient and modern times both in India and abroad was due to excessive materialism bereft of Rta. Nanda dynasty of ancient India collapsed owing to its inherent contradictions caused by materialism and wide spread corruption. The great Roman Empire conquered the matter and later matter conquered this powerful Empire. Materialism later led to the final end of Greek civilization. Mughal Empire in India collapsed when corruption and materialism became part of the then Indian society. Lately the Communist Soviet Union and other East European countries broke up due to excessive materialistic outlook, large-scale corruption in the society and various other practices bereft of spiritualism and laws of nature. If God Himself observes and follows sternly His Own laws -Vedic Rta and human beings ignore these, certainly it becomes a cause of social disorder and anarchy. Failure of many corrupt ruling dynasties and materialistic societies, civilizations in the past are all testimony that corruption which is due to lack of spiritual and divine knowledge of Rta, had led to anarchy, absolute chaos and their final destruction.
In spite of clear message of Vedic metaphysics about Rta and past history of materialistic societies, civilizations and governments, the human tendency under the influence of senses and outward looking mind is to ignore Rta and laws of necessity. In the last a few decades many states, countries, societies in the world have once again started moving towards social disorder, anarchy and even self-destruction. This non-divine trend has become the cause of extreme excesses and deficiencies. The affluent are least bothered that their hundreds of millions of spiritual brothers and sisters are not able to get even two satisfying meals after the day's hard work. There are tens of millions of people who do not get even one satisfying meal after the whole day hard work. This non divine but materialistic trend if not arrested by following the laws of God, Rta or divine Li, can become a major cause of destruction of many materially prosperous states and societies. Many human beings have forgotten that we are all logs in the cosmic machine Nature through which God works continuously as Unmoved Mover. He supervises this divine machine through His own cosmic laws, which are nothing but His own Mind and Will, made apparent through the functioning of the Nature and gross Universe.
According to Vedic metaphysics Mahat is cosmic intelligence and inner mind (manas) of each individual is part of it. So it is not difficult to know these laws, if we use our Buddhi (intellect) sincerely. The moment we isolate our intellect from this Mahat, we become critical of scriptures and Vedic concepts of Satya (truth), Rta, Dharma (righteousness) and even about God. With the isolation of the intellect the downfall of the individual begins, when the distinction between good, bad, right, wrong, moral and immoral start disappearing. A stage reaches when even bad, immoral, wrong are perceived as good, moral and right. At this stage such persons feel ashamed in doing activities, which are good and moral. It is a common sight in many places, cities and towns in India that after the accident and injury to some persons, majority of people in spite of their inner voice of rushing the necessary helps feel ashamed to render the much-needed help. Many persons prefer to live or sit in the unclean house, room or place rather than sweeping and cleaning themselves. The false ego of many persons will not allow them to carry their own luggage during the journey in the train or bus even though well within their physical capacity to carry. Many urbanites like flowers, green patch / belt near and also in their houses but feel ashamed to do the work themselves of removing weeds, watering plants and other work of a gardener in their own houses.
Most surprisingly many of such persons will not mind or feel ashamed in giving or taking bribe, resorting to corrupt practices, spreading pollution and other evil activities. All such persons will show complete ignorance about Rta, divine Li and laws of God for social and moral order. Problems could arise for the atheists who do not believe in God or agnostics who have doubts about the existence of God owing to the limitations of their reasoning power of the mind. Since most of the atheists and agnostics have belief in the existence of Nature and are keen to lead a moral and meaning full life, Vedic Rta as laws of Nature or as moral laws of necessity could be supplemented with their metaphysical or philosophical postulates for fulfilling the requirement of their moral life. For the theists, they could aid God in the realisation of His Cosmic plan and Grand Design by cooperating with Him or as holy Koran says by surrendering to His commandments and also as Vedas say by leading a rational and noble life based on Rta or Vratani. Plato gave so much importance to Forms and Ideas akin to Vedic Rta that he came to metaphysical conclusion that essence of education should be search for such Ideas (laws). Holy Koran 30-29 says, "There is no altering in the laws of creation." The holy Bible ordains that you are dead to God if you do not respond to love and call of God and also if you do not follow rules, laws and commandments of God." Bhagavad Gita unequivocally describes," living according to spiritual laws in the scriptures is an ideal living”(B.G.16-23). For the ancient Greeks living according to universal laws of Nature was supreme good. All these above spiritual and moral messages are found and explained in great details in the Vedic metaphysics.