Monday, July 10, 2017

Parampara - परम्परा - परंपरा

Parampara - परम्परा - परंपरा
Parampara (Sanskrit: परम्परा, paramparā) in simple terms denotes a succession, or tradition, and can be looked at in many views such as cultural, religious, musical lineage, family lineage, but the first mention of "Parampara" brings to our mind the succession of a Teacher and Disciple.
In the pure Traditional form Parampara
(Sanskrit: परम्परा, paramparā) denotes a succession of teachers and disciples in traditional Vedic culture and Indian religions such as Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism, and Buddhism. It is also known as guru-shishya tradition (succession from guru to disciple).

The Sanskrit word literally means an uninterrupted row or series, order, succession, continuation, mediation, tradition. In the traditional residential form of education, the shishya remains with his or her guru as a family member and gets the education as a true learner.

In some traditions there is never more than one active master at the same time in the same guruparamaparya (lineage).

In the paramparā system, knowledge (in any field) is passed down (undiluted) through successive generations. For example, division of Veda and its transfer through paramparas describes Bhagavata Purana. Other fields of knowledge taught may include spiritual, artistic (music or dance), or educational.

Titles of gurus
In Parampara, not only is the immediate guru revered, the three preceding gurus are also worshiped or revered. These are known variously as the kala-guru or as the "four gurus" and are designated as follows:
  • Guru – the immediate guru
  • Parama-guru – the guru of the Parampara or specific tradition (e.g. for the Śankaracharyas this is Adi Śankara)
  • Parātpara-guru – the guru who is the source of knowledge for many traditions (e.g. for the Śankaracharya's this is Vedavyāsa)
  • Parameṣṭhi-guru – the highest guru, who has the power to bestow mokṣa (usually depicted as Śiva, being the highest guru)

The Guru-Shishya Tradition
The guru-shishya traditionor parampara 
("lineage"), denotes a succession of teachers and disciples in traditional Indian culture and religions
such as HinduismJainismSikhism and Buddhism 
(Tibetan and Zen tradition). It is the tradition of spiritual relationship and mentoring where teachings are transmitted from a guru "teacher" (Sanskritगुरु) to a śiṣya "disciple" (Sanskritशिष्य) or chela

Such knowledge whether it be Vedicagamic
architectural,musical or spiritual, is imparted through the developing relationship between the guru and the disciple. It is considered that this relationship, based on the genuineness of the guru, and the respect, commitment, devotion and obedience of the student, is the best way for subtle or advanced knowledge to be conveyed. The student eventually masters the knowledge that the guru embodies.

In this first post about this vast subject I have only taken up the topic upto the basic understanding of what Parampara means and the generic view of Guru-Parampara.

In the subsequent posts we will try to know more about:
  • 1Historical background
  • 2Common characteristics of the guru–shishya relationship
  • 3Parampara and Sampradaya
  • 4Guru–shishya relationship types
    • 4.1Advaita Vedanta
    • 4.2Śruti tradition
    • 4.3Shaktipat tradition
    • 4.4Bhakti yoga
    • 4.5Prapatti
    • 4.6Buddhism
  • 5Psychological aspects and much more.

    It has been a very divine experience traversing even this small trail into knowing more about the Guru, Parampara, and Guru-Shishya Parampara, and I am sure every step in the Journey ahead will be more enlightening!

Eva Ekeblad Remembered on her 293rd Birthday!

Eva Ekeblad Remembered on her 293rd Birthday!

Google Doodled Eva Ekeblad today to celebrate her  293rd Birthday. Eva Ekeblad, née Eva De la Gardie, was a Swedish agronomist, scientist, Salonist and noble. Her best-known discovery was how to make flour and alcohol out of potatoes. She was the first female member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. 
Born: 10 July 1724, Stockholm, Sweden
Died: 15 May 1786, Lidköping, Sweden
Children: Ulrika Fock Ekeblad, Agneta Sofia Ekeblad, ...
Books: Children, learning, numbers
Parents: Magnus Julius De la Gardie, Hedvig Catharina De la Gardie
Siblings: Hedvig Catharina von Fersen, Carl Julius De la Gardie....

The importance of the Remembrance is not only for her Birthday but for the cause of her invention which was that the Swedish Scientist brought Potatoes, and the Greenhouse curiosity to the inhabitants. She further discovered through her research the value of starch and how though very simple and humble it had the might to allow her to help in reducing famine in the years to come for her country that was then ravage with famine. You can read more about it here at the Wikipedia link -

Google had Dedicated a small Video with their Doodle which you can watch here -
You will also find more videos about her there in the link above.
Let us take this moment to  remember this great scientist and wish her a Happy Birthday as she still remains living among the Swedish People as a living example of what good work can do to your people and your country! 

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Understanding The Meaning And Importance Of Guru Poornima

Understanding The Meaning And Importance Of Guru Poornima
||श्री गुरुभ्यो नमः|| 
Salutation to the Guru or the Teacher

Understanding The Meaning And Importance Of Guru Poornima

अज्ञानतिमिरान्धस्य ज्ञानाञ्जनशालाकया
Agyan timirandhasya gyananjan shalakaya

चक्षुरुन्मीलितं येन तस्मै श्रीगुरवे नमः
chakshurunmilitam yen tasmai shri gurave namah

Meaning - 
He who removes darkness of ignorance of the blinded (un-enlightened) by applying the ointment(medicine) of (Spiritual) knowledge
He Who opens the eyes, salutations unto that holy Guru

Guru Purnima is an Indian and Nepalese festival dedicated to spiritual and academic teachers. This festival is traditionally celebrated by Hindus, Jains and Buddhists, to pay their respects to their teachers and express their gratitude. The festival is celebrated on the full moon day (Purnima) in the Hindu month of Ashadha (June–July) of the Shaka Samvat, as it is known in the Hindu calendar of India and Nepal.This day marks the first peak of the lunar cycle after the peak of the solar cycle.

Guru Poornima is a festival that is celebrated as per the Hindu Moon Sign calendar to express reverence towards your Guru, your teacher or mentors. Etymologically, the word Guru has been derived from two parts - Gu that means darkness and Ru that is the antidote to the darkness. Naturally, the word Guru implies someone who shows takes us away from the darkness of ignorance to the light of knowledge.

The Above description and definitions though may highlight a particular religion, who followed them the principles are applicable to anyone in life irrespective of Religion, Caste, Creed, Nationality or otherwise. To Grow up in life we need a Guide, Mentor, Teacher or the divine entity we so term as "God" in bowing down before him in reverence and accepting in humility that there is something that is greater than "Self" and we accept it to learn from them and grow. Simply speaking we can say - "Guru Poornima is basically the festivals of the 'seekers' – the seekers of the divine wisdom, knowledge, spirituality, peace and greater prudence."

Guru ke sumiran maatr se, nasht vighn anant
Taase sarv aarambh me(i), Dhyaavat hai sab sant

(Just by remembering your Guru, you will be able to overcome all the obstacles. That's why at the beginning of everything, Guru is remembered – not only by the saints, but also by many common people)