Essentials of Vedic wisdom for Blissful Living is a humble attempt to introduce the eternal wisdom of the Vedic rishis (sages) in a simple yet undiluted from. It seeks to elucidate various Vedic ideas, including Atman, Paramatma, Karma, Dharma, contrary to popular imcomplete definations. The authors endeavor to explain not just the grand design, of the universe, but also how the teachings of the Vedas can be used to lead a blissful life amid the present day chaos, stress and confusion.
About The Author
Udupi Mahesh Prabhu is a media, management & political consultant. He is a Founder & Director of Vedic Management Center and pens columns for BW Business world as well Bussiness Goa. A fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain & Ireland, London (UK) and member of the International Federation of Jouranlists (USA), he also holds a Masters, in Bussiness Administration with a specialzation in Marketing.
Vedic wisdom is perhaps the most important system of knowledge for the future well –being of humanity and for the planet overall. It connects our human species to its higher purpose as an evolution of cosmic consciousness, without which we may be challenged to survive in this high –tech era and its artificial and complicated way of life.
Vedic knowledge occurs on two interrelated levels. The first level is knowledge of the human being, not just as a physical body, but as manifestation of a higher awarness. Vedic knwoledge is Self –knowledge, which is not merely knowledge of our physical or psychological selves, but of our true eternal nature beyond body and mind, time, space and karma.
The second level is knowledge of the universe, not just at an outer level, but an inner level as a manifestation of consciousness on all levels from the subatomic to the supragalactic. These two levels of knowledge are ultimately one. The entire universe dwells in our own hearts as our own true nature. All the laws of nature and the universe work as one organic being, with the whole reflected in every part.
Such a view of cosmic knowledge looks to a direct experience of universal truth within us. It is not merely knowledge of name, form or number. It is not merely an understanding of nature's forces or a manipulation of the external world, which always remains problematical. It directly perceives the entire world as part of our own greater being.
Vedic wisdom is not any mere outer information or data, such as our computer provide us with. To receive it requires not just getting more knowledge but changing who we are at a fundamental level. Accessing it rests upon a certain way of life and Behavior defined by principles of dharma and right living. This means being in control, of the mind and senses, letting go of the ego, and not pursuing the material world and personal enjoyment as our primary way of life.
Vedic wisdom calls us to move beyond desire, greed and attachment, renouncing our arrogance of knowing and trying to control life and instead surrending to the Divine presence behind nature's wonders. It requires truthfulness, honesty, self –discipline, selflessness and a respectful receptivity to the wisdom of the sages.
While people today can easily read book and articles and grasp complex ideas and detailed information, such a behavioral basis to approach higher consciouness is rare and requires a great deal of work on onself in order to achieve. Such behavioral changes are the essence of the traditional practice of Yoga that is rooted in yamas and niyamas or principles and practices of right living starting with truthfulness and non –violence (satya and ahimsa).
Vedic wisdom is not another fad, psychogical appraich or religious belief. It requires deep introspection within and profound contemplation of nature without, allied with a willingnes to transform ourselves according to higher will and awareness. Yet this makes it more powerful and lasting in its results. Which is to unfold our deepest potentials.
In his current book, Essentials of Vedic Wisdom for Blissful living, Mahesh Prabhu endeavors, to present Vedic wisdom in a simple, yet clear and profound manner that the modern reader can easily access, for whom the Vedic vision and way of life, with its very different background, may initially he hard to understand. Such transcriptions of Vedic wisdom without compromising its essence are very important today when the social media is flooded with misleading information and limited views of reality.
Each chapter of the book provides a different perspective on Vedic living that can be used as a doorway to enter into a broader Vedic understanding of who we truly are –which is much more than even our current science and technology has yet imagined. Such writings are best slowly read and contemplated in order to properly appreciate and absorb.
U. Mahesh Prabhu is a noted teacher and author in the field, of Vedic management. He's also a noted a media, management and political consultant. He aims to bring this powerful Vedic approach to the Public and to sincere individuals and groups throughout the world. This book represents the intitial presentation of their ideas and helps us understand their values and way of thought. The Vedic Management Center is a new organization developed by him to address these issues and provide guidance on how to develop a Vedic way of life that is both many –sided and sustainable. The organisation is likely to grown rapidly in the years to come.
Vedic mangement, to put is simply, is a life, manged according to Vedic wisdom and Vedic principles of right living, addressing individual and collective, private and public levels. These approaches are explored in detail from various angles in Vedic wisdom requires a Vedic lilfe, which is a life lived according to a universal vision. The current book can serve a good contmeporary introduction to this transformative process of Vedic wisdom that is beneficial to all.
"The Vedas were compound thousands of years ago, so why should we bother studying or understanding their outdated teachings? On the contrary, science and technology have transformed our world in ways that are easy to see. We live surrounded by modern luxury and comfort, something Vedic people would have probably only dreamed of. Given this fact, is there anything truly worthwhile to learn from ancient Vedic wisdom?" Thoughts like these must have certainly crossed your mind, making you sceptical towards any Vedic teachings.
It is true that science and technology have transformed our lives like never before. However, on deeper introspection we find that many things in life remain the same, with unhappines and sorrow touching us all. Diseases of the past have given way to complex disease today, some new to medical science, with more of us relying on daily medications to deal with them. People suffered pain in the past just as they do today, perhaps for different reasons. There was love then as there is today, however our relationships seem to have become more fragile. There was hate then, and certainly enmity is very common today.
Our external reality may be vastly better than it was in the past but our feelings have not changed very much. Fear, desire, anger, difficulties in relationships, the struggle and stress of daily living still plague us. One wonders if we are happier that the people of yore, or simply more busy and preoccupied. We have improved our outer appearance but our inner issues remain the same. In fact, today we seem less capables of dealing with difficulties or finding any lasting peace of mind.
Hence, contrary to the belief that science and technology have transformed our lives in qualitative manner –we are still inmost respects the same type of human beings with similar experience of love and hate, and the yearing for something transcendent to deliver us form our unhappiness to lasting bliss.
Given this scenario most people have found different methods of dealings with the various crises that life seems to throw at them; support groups, therapies, drugs, new age philosphies, yoga, consumerism, travel and what have you. All of these are methods of dealings with the existential crisis that seems to have gripped most people once the basic needs of survival are met, Work –life balance, stress managment, and mental health seem to be the key words for the era.
But where or how does Vedic wisdom come into this discussion? Is it another repackaging and selling of old goods or maybe Hinduism's own form of fundamentalism? After all what benefit can out of date rituals and traditions offer the modern stressed out time strapped man or woman.
Yet, Vedic wisdom can play an important part in the mental health and lifestyle disscussion, how you might ask?
Firstly, Vedic wisdom is neither a diktat nor a single form of thinking, it encompass different philosophies, includes a range of texts dealing from the most philosphical discussions "Why am I here?" to the mundane aspects "Which diet plan might best suit me?". It is all encompassing and specific to the individual.
One might be surprised and even sceptical to this arguments; it almost seems too good to be true. Perhaps we can start with answering this question: Who am I? yes, the most philosphical, yet yawn producing question, Philosophy might say, I think, therefore I am. Any method of inquiry would say, I am a name, a body, a personality, or at the very least a combination of nature & nurture.
Yet are we all of these, one of these, one of these or even none of these?
A name is only an identification given to your body, something we do not even select for ourselves. Can't you change your name if you wish?
Look at a picture of yourself when you were ten years old. Now look at yourself today. You see dissimilarities, don't you? And yet, it is the same person –You! But both bodies are different in so many ways. Aren't they? So, what is enabling you to connect the body of the ten –year –old with your body today as being the same person?
Did you say that it is your mind that has stayed the same? Certainly, yours ideas and emotions are no longer those of a ten –year old. Perhaps, it is some deeper aspect of your mind? Alright, now imagine you are in a deep sleep without any trace of a dream. Your thinking mind is virtually non –existant in that you do not exist? If not , then do you still exist even when your mind is in a dormant or even in a comatose state? Do you still want to believe that you are only the mind?
Take this further; your mind is constantly changing with numerous shifing thoughts, emotions and sensations. Most of these you gladly forget, some becomes core memories that remain with you as a personality. clearly you are more than the totality of your thoughts. What is the constant factor in your awareness behind this play of emotions, information, concepts, memories and speculations that you regard as yourself or as your mind?
You may want to argue that all of these are hypothetical questions and that they aren't needed in a rationalist setup. Think again. Rationalism is all about looking at things with a rationale or reason that rests upon our actual experience. You don't accept anything as true just because some book, intitution or individual says. Therefore, use a similar rationale for answering the quintessential question "Who am I?"
In the sphere of scientific understanding, one must understand the tools, and enviroment while taking the time to answer specific questions. This is the approach of the scientific mind. Wherein knowing is everything!
While, you claim to know your body, mind and environs –you know nothing about you, what does it make of you or of your life or identity if you cannot answer that question? People fear that which they don't know. Therefore, the scientific spirit of inquiry suggest that you should try to understand who you really are, or the relvance all other form of knowledge is questionable as well.
Our reality is an individual truth that we attach value and meaning to, if we are unsure of whom we are; how can we do justice to the problems we face?
This question, while philosophical also begs us to ask the next question, what constitutes a scientific process? Does individual knowing constitute the only reliable form of knowledge.
Vedic systems such Nyaya and MImasa answer these very questions on what is an investigative process and what are the various forms of knwoledge. While, Sankhya seeks to answer questions such as "Who am I? " and "Where do I come from?"; the very basis of the modern scientific thoughts is found in texts which are thousands of years old.
Vedic sages contemplated deeply and discovered answers to many fundamental questions of life. When they found the answers, they also found an extraordinary value behind them. they designed systems and methodologies that made the truth replicable, methods that are practised even today. They took this knowledge and compiled it into the various Vedic texts, including Vedas, Vedanta, Aranyaks, Shastras, Shatakas and the like.
Beyond the profound questions of life, they also sought to enchance the aesthetics of life and simplify daily existences.
Vedic wisdom has much to offer society; proponents of Vedic wisdom are continually peaceful; neither elated nor in sorrow. They neither brood about the past nor worry about the future. They are found doing all the good they can in whatever way possible –without any sense of pride, greed or anger. They do no seek publicity or awards for their accomplishments their state of absolute consciousness itself is their accomplishment, as well as the reward. They aren't always Yogis meditating in the Himalayas or doing Yoga exercises. They may live among the common masses like a lotus flower arising from the mud –untained by the vagaires of life.
A lack of proponents and teachers does however plague the spread of this knwoledge. Yet the most pervasive and damaging phenomenon is the rigid mindset, which denies the benefits of Vedic thought. Preconceived views and mental conditioning at times prevents us form exploring the goldmine of wisdom that is the Vedas and Shastras. While professing love for the scientific theory, it is not employed to examine Vedic wisdom. Words such as Dharma, Guru and Karma have been reduced to cliches unfortunately when their meaning is the most important.
Vedic philosophies do not merely explain the ills facing our society but also offer pragmatic solutions to create a better world through a higher awareness. However, since they have been reduced to mere religious beliefs, we consider them either as objects of worship or a matter of ridicule. It is only when we study the Vedic wisdom with detachment, with neither reverence nor disagregard, that we can knwo the world in ways we've never considered possible, along with attaining solutions to the most critical problems facing humanity today. But are we willing to give Vedic wisdom a chance, by investing some time to seriously and objectively examine it?
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