A Short Story

I will tell you a story…..


 There was a wise man living with his sons…. leading calm and contended life. The sons respected and adored their father and always tried to pay attention to what he had to say and follow his advises. As his advises never failed to bring good results, the sons began to obey without discussions or applying the discretion…..it could be a waste of intelligence they felt….weren’t   the old man’s words were consistently adding value their lives?. This was not making the old man happy. But he couldn’t persuade his sons to learn to keep their eyes open and develop their own wisdom……

As the time passed, the Father breathed his last and family & business were passed over to sons. They diligently followed the advices of their late father in their personal and professional lives. The sayings and conduct of their father in due course acquired the status of folklores and legends…….

The time kept flying. The house was to be rebuilt and expanded by the fifth generation…. When the plans of demolition were finalized the old great grandson of the wise man urgently called his grandson to keep intact a particular area in the dining section. He told him that the Wise man used to visit that corner religiously after every meal, spent some time there and come back to sit contentedly and disburse wise dispensations.

The latest generation not only complied but preserved that part which was more like a shelf in the wall, but also decorated it after cordoning it off….after all it was here that the  Patriarch used to get his nuggets of wisdom after contemplating in that corner….

Then one day, the youngest child happened to kick the ball which intruded in the sacred area and dislodged the shelf………the mother, hurriedly collected the debris and tried to get it back in shape before men in the family could notice……

And in the evening she proudly displayed her artwork and showed off the golden replica of an object found in the sacred shelf which was thought to be regularly used by the Wise Man….

And this golden object cane to be worshipped through generations though the advices and sayings kept changing shade……

Many would wonder what is the essence of story and many others will laugh derisively if we tell them that the worshipped object was the golden replica of a dental floss…….which was regularly used by the Wise Man after each meal…….

इस से पहले की हम वेदांत पर चर्चा करें, हमे ये जानना जरूरी है की आखिर धर्म है क्या? मोटे तौर पे  आम आदमी के लिए धर्म का मतलब थोड़े से  विश्वास, कुछ किताबें, चंद पौराणिक कहानियां और अपने ख़ास इष्ट से प्रार्थना करने का तरीका भर है .एक ऐसा तरीका जो हमे दिन प्रतिदिन की जिजीविषा में  अनचाही घटना से बचाने  या कुछ मानसिक सुरक्षा देने का भरोसा दिलाता है.


लेकिन जब भी इंसान को कुछ चैन के क्षण मिलते हैं, उसका मन अपनी लगी बंधी रोजमर्रा की  जिंदगी के आगे बढ़ कर झाँकने की कोशिश में लग जाता है और  अनेकानेक सवाल उठाने का प्रयास करने लगता है. जितना ज्यादा जान पाटा है, उस से ज्यादा  प्रश्न उसे घेरते हैं..


अपने   बारे में जानने की उत्सुकता में  मानव  ने  ज्ञान-विज्ञानं की विविध विधाओं की शुरुआत और विकास किया. लेकिन फिर भी ये सारी विधाएं  हमारी अज्ञानता के अँधेरे पर पड़ने वाली चंद रौशनी के टुकड़ों से ज्यादा नहीं हो पाई. दिन प्रतिदिन  विस्तृत होते  विविध विज्ञानं  कभी भी भावनाओं, मृत्यु या अंतरतम के विचारों के रहस्य नहीं सुलझा पाए. इन्ही रहस्यों का हल पाने के लिए जो विचार बने वो धर्म शास्त्र बने और जो मन की आवाज़ उठी वो आस्था बन गयी.


अब जिस तरह किसी वैज्ञानिक सिद्धांत तभी सफल करार दिया जाता है जब की वह भविष्य में होने वाली घटनाओं की व्याख्या कर सके और बाद में हुई खोजों को आत्मसात कर सके, ठीक उसी तरह धार्मिक विश्वास  भी परीक्षा होती है. ऐसे ही कुछ धर्म धरती के विभिन्न हिस्सों पर उपजे और समय के साथ विकसित हुए.


ऐसे ही कुछ प्राचीन विश्वास अभी तक जीवित हैं.कुछ के आधार सिमट गयें हैं जैसे की पर्शिया का zorosthrianism  , जापान का shintoism तथा चीन का shamanism  और कुछ अभी भी पंख फैला रहे हैं जैसे जी Judaism तथा Hinduism . इन धर्मो का इतिहास खोजने की कोशिश हमे अतीत के अँधेरे में ही ले जाती है. इनका प्रारम्भ किसी पवित्र पुस्तक या किसी पैगम्बर से नहीं जोड़ा जा सकता है. परन्तु इन धर्मो की विकास यात्रा हमे बताती है की किस तरह से ये जीवंत धर्म  नए विश्वास और वैज्ञानिक परिणामों को आत्मसात करने में सक्षम रहे और  आज भी मानवता को दिशा दिखा रहे हैं.


ये था एक संकेत, या रूपरेखा ऐसे विश्वास की जो की जो हमसे  परिचित इतिहास के  पहले प्रारम्भ हुए और आज भी  आधुनिक मन  को सहारा दिए हुए हैं.


अब चलें एक प्राचीन फिर भी अर्वाचीन धर्म के परिचय के लिए..

First Step

Before we initiate a discussion on specific branch of Hinduism, let’s first focus on what ‘religion’ means to a common person. It usually comprises a set of beliefs, scriptures, mythology and method of praying to the chosen deity. Broadly speaking it helps to find a level of emotional security and strength to face the undesirable in our daily routine. As we earn leisure in our routine, we tend to look beyond these things i.e. security, routine and all that grind of daily life. The more we see, the more we question.

Our efforts to know about the Existence through the streams of science, art and humanities illuminate but the stray patches (even though they are ever broadening) of the Reality as a whole. The ever expanding knowledge in myriad fields is yet to grasp fully the mysteries of emotions, death and fathomless human thought process. The effort of any civilization to bridge these gaps leads to thought component of religion and the inspiration to its component of faith.

Just as any hypothesis or theory of Science is considered closer to Reality if it has scope to encompass further observations and continues to explain later discoveries; the Religious faith also evolves and is tested on these two touchstones. Thus the religious thoughts which could absorb the later development in society and science withstood the tests of time and expanded their horizon. Some such thought processes continuing from antiquity are still surviving like Zoroastrianism of Persia, Shintoism of Japan and Shamanism of China with shrunken base and Judaism and Hinduism with stable or expanding base. The line going backwards in chronology for these religions blurs in antiquity and their origin cannot be linked to any book or any prophet. But moving forward, these thought processes of survivor religions imbibed the later developments that came their way, internalised the evolution and thrived through the ages.

This is the outline of religious faith that emerges from darkness predating known history and proceeds  to illuminate the modern mind.

So we shall take our next step to acquaint ourselves with Hinduism….one of the surviving faith.