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8-Agni Puraan

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8-Agni Puraan, Ch 160-162, p 333-337            contd from     Previous Page

Varn Aashram Dharm for Vaanprasthee and Sanyaasee

Dharm for Vaanprasthee

Pushkar said - "Parashuraam Jee, Now you listen to Vaanprasth Dharm. Keeping Jataa on the head, doing Havan everyday, sleeping on the ground, and wearing deer skin, living in forest, subsisting on fruits and roots etc, never to take any Daan from anybody, keeping Brahmcharya rules, and worshipping A-Tithi ete all are Vaanprasthee's Dharn

A Grihasth should adopt Vaanprasth when his children are grown up. He can live with or without his wife. If he is living with his wife they should  observe Brahmcharya. Till they have strength, they should tolerated severe conditions. One should not return to Grihasth Dharm as far as possible.

Dharm for Sanyaasee

Pushkar said - "Now I will tell you the Dharm of Sanyaasee. When one approaches the fourth part of his age, or the day he feels Vairaagya in his heart, he should become Sanyaasee. After doing Praajaapatya Yagya, he should donate everything he has. He should wander alone, he should go to a village only for food. Be disinterested in his body, should not collect food, eat food only in one pot of gourd, or wood, or clay or bamboo; live under a tree, wear minimum clothes and treat all alike. He should neither wish for living nor for dying, just wait for dying. When the smoke has topped coming out of a Grihasth's house, fire is put out, and everybody has finished his food, a Sanyaasee to go for his alms at such times to his house.

Bhikshaa is of 5 types - (1) Madhukaree - asking alms from several houses; (2) A-Sanklrapt - about which one has never thought about; (3) Prrakpraneet - reserved alms before hand; (4) A-Yaachit - whatever is got without asking; and (5) Tatkaal Upalabdh - whatever is got just like that at the time food. He should live as Kar-Paatree (Kar means hand, Paatra means pot, who treats his hand as pot). It is not only necessary to bear the signs of that particular Aashram, one should follow its rules also. If some Dwij is lame, or blind or deaf and he becomes a good Sanyaasee even unknowingly, he becomes free from everything.

There are 10 characteristics of Dharm - (1) Dhrit - patience, (2) Kshamaa - forgiveness, (3) Dam - controlling mind, (4) Not stealing, (5) Cleanliness, (6) Indriya Nigraha - controlling Indriya, (7) Lajjaa - knowledge of Shaastra, (8) Vidyaa - knowledge, (9) Satya - truth, (10) A-Krodh - not being angry.
Sanyaasee are of 4 types - Kuteechak, Bahoodak, Hans and Param Hans. The last one is the highest type of Sanyaasee.
Yam is of 5 types - (1) Ahinsaa - non-violence, (2) Satya - truth, (3) Asteya - not stealing, (4) Brahmcharya - abstinence, and (5) A-Parigraha - not collecting anything.
There are 5 types of Niyam - (1) Shauch - cleanliness, (2) Santosh - contentment, (3) Tap - penance, (4) Swaadhyaaya - self-study, and (5) Worshipping God.

A Yogee Sanyaasee should follow all of them. Praanaayaam is of 2 types - "Sa-Garbh" and "A-Garbh". When it is done with Mantra Jap and meditation, it is called Sa-Garbh; and when it is not done with Mantra Jap and meditation, it is called A-Garbh. Praanaayaam itself is of 3 types - Poorak, Kumbhak and Rechak. When the air is drawn inside, it is called Poorak; when it is held back inside, it is called Kumbhak; and when it is exhaled, it is called Rechak. According to Maatraa it is of 3 types - 12 Maatraa, 24 Maatraa, and 36 Maatraa. Of course 36 Maatraa one is the best. Hriswa Swar (such as Aa, Paa etc) is called a Maatraa. While doing Praanaayaam, one should do Jap of Pranav Mantra (Aum is the Pranav Mantra) in a slow speed.

Controlling Indriyaan is called "Pratyaahaar". When Saadhak do Jap, it is called meditation. When somebody is firm on some idea, it is called Dhaaranaa. When somebody mingles himself in Brahm, it is called Samaadhi. "This Aatmaa (soul) is Par-Brahm. Brahm is Satya, Gyaan and limitless. Brahm is joy. Paramaatmaa is Light, the same is Aatmaa. Whatever is beyond this worldly things, the same is Brahm and the same is me." When one thinks in this way, it is known as Samaadhi.

Dharm Shaastra

Pushkar said - Whatever Manu, Vishnu, Yaagyavalkya, Haareet, Atri, Yam, Angiraa, Vashisth, Daksh, Samvart, Shaataatap, Paraashar, Aapstamb, Ushanaa, Vyaas, Kaatyaayan, Brihaspati, Gautam, Shankh and Likhit have described Dharm, the same I tell you now.

Vaidik Karm is of 2 types - Pravratt and Nivratt. When some Karm is done with any desire, it is called Pravratt; whatever Karm is done with the feeling of knowledge and without desire, it is called Nivratt. Ved study, Tap,  Gyaan, controlling of Indriyaan, Ahinsaa, serving Guru - these Karm are the givers of Moksh. Among them Aatm Gyaan is said to be the highest. This is the best among all Vidyaa. Who sees one's own Aatmaa in all Bhoot (beings) and all Bhoot in one's own Aatmaa, and treats all Bhoot alike, and worship only Aatmaa, he attains Moksh. That is why one should always make efforts for Aatm Gyaan and controlling of Indriyaan.

One should start Ved study on the Poornimaa of Shraavan Maas (Rakshaabandhan day), or on a day when there is Shravan Nakshatra, or on Shraavan Shukla 5th when Hast Nakshatra is there. If the new crop is not ready in Shraavan month, then whenever it is ready, in Bhaadrapad month, on a day when there is Shravan Nakshatra, Ved study should be started and be continued till 4 and 1/2 months continuously. Then in Paush month, on the day of Rohinee Nakshatra or on 8th day one should go to the bank of a pond or river or stream and end his Ved study. If Ved study has been started in Bhaadrapad month, then it should be ended on Maagh Shukla 1st day - thus says Manu [4/97].

One should not study Ved for 3 days on the death of disciple, Ritwij, Guru, and any relation or friend. One should not study Ved from the day of beginning of Ved study and from the day of ending Ved study. One should not study Ved in evenings. Besides during the storms, at the time of earthquakes, after studying Aaranyak, 1st day of season change time, Shraaddh food, one should not study Ved for 1 day and 1 night. If any animal like frog, dog, snake, donkey, owl, or rat comes near the reader of Ved, he should not read Ved for 1 day and 1 night. If somebody comes to one's house, or somebody is at life risk, one should not study Ved. (There are 37 occasions on which Ved should not be read.)



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Created by Sushma Gupta on 3/15/05
Updated on 05/21/13