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February 17 , 2012

This issue carries Bhagavatam Chapter 82 of Dasama Skandha. It is a description of the meeting of virtually all people referred to in Bhagavatam Dasama Skandha. This in includes Pandavas and Kauravas , it includes Bhishma and Drona and all those warrior kings who participated in the Kurukshetra war.The Solar eclipse of those days brought all of them together ar Syamantapanchaka Apparently this event is before the war, although in the earlier chapters of Dasama Skandha stories referred to an on going Kurukshetra war. The Poet has probably used the chapter to close some loose ends. This chapter also brings to close the story of Gopis when Gopis get instructed by Lord Srikrishna about his real self and their relationship with him.The Last sloka says " Having been thus instructed by the Lord, the Gopis by constant meditation eradicated the mask on the soul, understood the Lord fully".

The Ramayana Role models continues with the article on Sitayana or Sita as a role model. This is a fairly long article !! . And it appears under Ramayanam . A part of the story , to be precise the story of a Bear as recounted by Sita to Hanuman, is carried under the regular column of " one more thing " . The story of "Going to Forests" on how Sita insisted on joining Rama in going to the forests and succeeded also appears as a separate article on the Ramayanam page. Sita's logic is very much in line with her statement on Sri Rama as her husband and master ( guru)

There will be more in the coming weeks in Ramayana.

Athato Brahmajignyasaa this week continues with the elaboration of "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 paraphrase the 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 the middle path. We will present the kathopanishad in its original form . This Upanishad is told in Two Adyaayaas ( Chapters) with Three Vallis (parts) each . The first part ( valli) of the first Adhyaya (Chapter) appears in this issue. The three parts of first Adhyaya will be 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.

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

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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