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February 3 , 2012

While Ramayana Role models continues with the article on message of Ramayanaand Rama as role model, we are starting an article on celebrated Kathopanishad under Athato Brahma Gignyasa

Athato Brahmajignyasaa this week starts with an elaboration of one of Upanishads namely "Kathopanishad . Kathopansihad is one of the most widely read Upanishads in East and West. As usual the elaboration/ teaching on " Atman" and "Brahman" comes along as part of a story of Nachiketa's quest for knowledge. When Nachiketa was given boons by Yama, he chooses the knowledge of "Brahman" as his boon . Nachiketa tells Yama " Some say there is life after death and some say say not. I want to know the truth" . Yama was at first reluctant to tell . After testing Nachiketa by offering him several worldly temptations, Yama finally gives in and gives him the secret of "Brahman". When one reads a text of this nature one choice is to remove the complex language and paraphrasethe same and give the gist of the Kathopanishad in a simple language. The other choice would be to stick to the rendering as is done in the original and present the same as is. A third choice is to stick to therendering as is and add he elaboration as given by the "Bhashyakars". The third would have been too complex and the first option too simple. So we are choosing themiddle path. We will present the kathopanishad in its original form . This Upanishad is told in Two parts with Three chapters each . The first chapter of the first Part appears in this issue. The three chapters are brought on alternate week basis , alternating with Ramayana Role models.

There are several slokas in Kathopanishad which are very beautiful and carry deep philosophical meanings. We will try to capture a few of such slokas and present them as part of the text.

Part of the effort in bringing the upanishads is to set at rest the common fear that Upanishads mean difficult text , difficult language and difficult thought processes. That simply is not true though to assimilate the thought processes does take an effort.

This week Bhagavatam continues with Chapter 81 of Dasama Skandha. Chapter 81 completes "The Story of Sudama" started in Chapter 80. The story of Kuchela brings out how the Supreme Being is satisfied with even a fistful flattenned rice when it is given with love and devotion. The Brahman's recation to the riches showered upon him also is note worthy. He resolves in contnuing to pray to the Supreme being instead of getting immersed in the riches at hand.

As stated the Ramayana Role models is appearing under Ramayanam.Shri Turaga has provided two links ( 1 , 2) for further readings.

The One more thing brings out the the sixteen qualities enumerated by Valmiki as part of his question in search of the person meeting those sixteen qualities. The answer ofcourse is Sri Rama !!.

As already stated the Ramayan and the role models are a perennial fascination for us and we had also published some books ( Raamudu- Sugunaabhiraamudu) and articles earlier !! . This is available for download !!.

We continue our requests for suggestions and contributions.

Om Tat Sat


Witty Wisdom !

- contributed by Kamaraju Turaga


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