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Brahma Loka Comes to Shri. C. B. K. Murthy


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Brahma Loka Comes to Shri. C. B. K. Murthy

Discourse Podcast


Shri C. B. K. Murthy, the first pillar of the mission of the propagation of the spiritual knowledge of Swami, expired at 11.00 pm on 09.11.2018. On the same day from 09.00 pm onwards, Swami was watching a movie on Shri Akkalkot Maharaj played on the television from a pen-drive. The last scene in the movie in which Shri Maharaj breathed His last, appeared exactly at 11.00 pm. Swami suffered in terrible pain and wept for half an hour, indicating the death of His important devotee. Swami did not weep like this previously while seeing this picture. A week earlier, the son of Shri C. B. K. Murthy had come and told Swami that his father was constantly uttering the name of Swami. Swami replied that He would come to his house to see him in just a week and that it would be His last visit to the devotee! The family members of the devotee told Swami that the devotee in his last days was always remembering the name of Swami alone and was praying to Swami to uplift his soul.

Swami replied: “As per the ethical scripture, I am not supposed to visit the funeral ritual of anybody for a period of six months since I just performed the marriage of My third son four months ago. During this period I did not even attend the annual ceremony of My late mother due to that restriction. But I attended this ritual, abandoning the rules of pravrutti since this is the line of nivrutti. By this you can realize that how much value I have given to this devotee!” All the family members of the devotee said that the devotee reached Brahma Loka (Abode of God) since Swami came there. But Swami replied, “This devotee did not reach Brahma Loka since Brahma Loka itself reached this devotee!”

Smt. Shrilakshmi, the first daughter-in-law of the devotee asked Swami about the journey of the soul after death. Swami gave the following message to all the family and relatives of the devotee on that day. Smt. Shrilakshmi is the fortunate devotee to whom Swami had given a vision in the past, in which He appeared as God Brahma emitting tremendous radiation.

The Journey of Souls Doing Worldly Deeds

Swami spoke: After death, the individual soul (Jiva) enters an energetic subtle body and reaches the immediate upper sub-world called Preta Loka. There the soul waits for ten days for the inquiry of its deeds by God. During this period, its subtle body gets food from cosmic energy. Individual souls have different shades in their energetic bodies based on their qualities and deeds done. The first world, Bhuuloka, is subdivided into four sub-worlds called Martya Loka, Preta Loka, Naraka Loka and Pituloka. This earth on which human beings exist is called Martya Loka or Karma Loka, which is the first sub-world of the first world, called Bhuuloka. This first sub-world is the place for doing deeds and hence, it is called a karma loka. Above this first sub-world, the other three upper sub-worlds of the Bhuuloka and the other worlds existing above the Bhuuloka, are invisible to human beings due to the unimaginable power of God. But by the grace of God, some souls can see them. When the inquiry is over in the Preta Loka, the individual soul with its subtle body, travels along one of four channels starting from the Preta Loka which is the junction. The channel along which a soul is sent depends on the inquiry of its deeds and the corresponding fruits that are to be enjoyed by the soul. The Naraka Loka and the Pitruloka, which are the two uppermost sub-worlds of Bhuuloka lying above the Preta Loka, are called bhoga lokas. All worlds lying above the Bhuuloka are also called as bhoga lokas, which are the places meant for the enjoyment of the fruits of one’s deeds. The four possible channels through which souls are sent after the inquiry in the Preta Loka are:

1) The third sub-world immediately above the Preta Loka is called Naraka Loka, which is hell. All sinners go to this world. Their souls are present in bodies which resemble black smoke. This body of smoke is called as Dhuuma Shariira. Note that the ‘food’ for all energetic bodies is cosmic energy itself. But for the souls in the Dhuuma Shariras this ‘food’ from the cosmic energy, is almost not supplied. The souls constantly suffer from terrible weakness. Very very little cosmic energy and that too very rarely, is supplied to them now and then; just to maintain the very mild energetic bodies. Naraka Loka (hell) is headed by Yama Dharmaraaja. In the region just above this regular hell, special hells headed by Kaalabhairava also exist.

2) The uppermost sub-world of Bhuuloka is called Pitruloka to which all neutral souls go. This sub-world is located on the moon. The body of the soul here is made of mild moonlight and is called as a Pitru Sharira. Food for these bodies is supplied in the form of the light energy of the moon.

3) The next immediate world above the Bhuuloka is called Dyu loka. It is also called as Jyotirloka or Bhuvarloka. Souls who have done social service for fame on this earth, reach this world. In this world, the soul gets a body, which is like a little bright light and is called a JyotihSharira. Food is supplied to these bodies from the cosmic energy. This world lies in between Bhuuloka and the sun.

4) Above this second world, exists the Suvarloka or Svarga Loka starting from the globe of the sun up to the pole star (Dhruva). It is also commonly called heaven. Souls reaching this world are those who have done good work of social service, which is not for fame. The soul here gets a body called a bhoga Sharira. Food for this body too is supplied from cosmic energy.

Once a soul attains an energetic body, material food is not at all required by its body. It is said that the material food given to deserving priests, reaches the departed souls. But this is only an Arthavaada, which is a lie told for a good purpose. It ensures that even a greedy person performs the death rituals and donates food to deserving receivers. It is very important to ensure that the receiver of our donation during any ritual is deserving of our donation. Donation to the deserving brings merit, while donation to the undeserving incurs sin. Do not think that the donation of food, clothes and money done to undeserving receivers is a mere waste. Actually, it yields punishment since such donation is sin. The Veda says that a receiver is deserving only if the person possesses the following two things (Shrotriyasyachaakaamahatasya😞

i) Spiritual knowledge of the Veda (or of the holy scripture of one’s particular religion) and

ii) The lack of aspiration for receiving anything in return from the donor or performer of the ritual.

The priest is the principal receiver of the donation of money (Dakshinaa) offered by the donor. Hence, the priest must explain the spiritual knowledge to the donor and other people assembled so as to improve their devotion. If this is not done, the whole ritual is a sheer waste! If the priest does this divine duty in the service of God without any aspiration in return, God will take care of everything for the priest. Money cannot be the solution for everything whereas God’s grace solves all problems. The merit earned in donating to deserving priests protects the departed soul as well as the performer of the ritual. I am not saying that the ritual should not be performed. What I say is that the ritual must be performed properly with perfect knowledge of the background (Jnaatvaa kuriita karmaani—Gita). By doing the rituals perfectly, good fruits are attained and the punishment for the sin of doing the rituals wrongly can be avoided.

For souls who are on the path of pravrutti, which is the path of worldly justice, we discussed the four channels along which they are sent depending on their good and bad deeds on earth. These four channels are limited to the Bhuuloka, Bhuvarloka and Suvarloka. The individual souls after enjoying the good and bad fruits of their deeds in the upper worlds or the sub-worlds of Bhuuloka, return to earth. This cyclic rotation always continues in pravrutti. In the path of pravrutti, there is no spiritual knowledge or devotion to God. There is only doing good deeds to serve society and avoiding bad deeds which harm society. Social service is the highest merit in this field.

The Journey of Souls on the Spiritual Path

The second path is nivrutti. It is the path of progressing in devotion, which is based on true spiritual knowledge. On this path too, the devotee does social service but it is not for heavenly fruits. It is done on the command of God, only to please God. Here, God is more important than the social service. The fully ripened soul who follows this path, leaves this earth after death in a very bright energetic body called a Divya Sharira and directly reaches the ultimate seventh world called Brahma Loka. Brahma Loka is the abode of God Datta or Father of heaven. Ripened devotees having some deficiencies, reach the three upper worlds, which lie between Suvarloka and Brahma Loka. These three worlds are called Maharloka, Jana Loka and Tapoloka. In these worlds, these highly devoted souls, get some special spiritual advice and guidance from divine preachers, who too are present in energetic bodies in these three worlds. In these three worlds, the souls also enjoy the fruits of their spiritual progress. These are the destinations of souls on the path of nivrutti.

Uncertainty about the Departed Soul’s Destination

When a person dies, we do not know in which world the soul has gone. But during the ritual, the priests pray to God for the journey of the soul to the ultimate Brahma Loka (Shaashvata Brahmaloka nivaasa siddhyartham). This is only our good wish and hope for our departed loved one. The reality depends only on the merit of the soul. We even inform others about the passing away of the person by writing that the departed soul has reached heaven (Svargastha). This too is only our good wish for our departed elders and the reality depends only on the merit of the soul.

We also perform annual ceremonies for the departed souls every year assuming that the soul is in heaven. The assumption behind doing the rituals is providing food for the departed souls every day as per the duration of a day in their world. As stated earlier, traditionally it is assumed that donations of food and items made by us to deserving receivers here on earth reach our departed ancestors. One day in heaven (Svarga Loka) is equal to one year on earth, whereas one day in Pitruloka is equal to one month on earth. Up to one year, we perform monthly ceremonies assuming that the soul has gone to Pitruloka. We even call our departed relatives as Pitrudevataas assuming that they are in Pitruloka. If they remain in Pitruloka, we should continue to perform these ceremonies every month since one day in Pitruloka is equal to one month on the earth. But we do these ceremonies monthly only up to one year. After the first year, we perform this ritual annually. Perhaps, this is done due to the inconvenience in doing it every month! But at least as per our assumption, it means that the soul stays in Pitruloka for one year and then moves to heaven (Svarga Loka) after one year. Yet we still continue to call our departed relatives as Pitrudevataas, which means that they are still residents of Pitruloka! By our assumption that the departed relatives have moved to heaven after the first year, we should call them as Devataas (angels), who are the residents of heaven! Of course, we must remember that even if some departed souls actually reach heaven, they are only temporary residents there. These temporary Devataas get temporary energetic bodies and are different from the permanent Devataas, who are present there in the energetic bodies forever. After the fruit of their good deeds is exhausted upon enjoyment in heaven for the stipulated time, the temporary Devataas have to return to earth.

In spite of all the above assumptions made in the traditional death rituals, we donate a cow to the priest during the ritual. It is said that the donation of a cow to the priest is necessary since it allows the departed soul to cross the river of blood called Vaitaraṇi and reach hell. This donation of a cow is performed for everybody. It means the soul certainly goes to hell alone after death. This variety in the steps and rituals followed during the death ceremonies of departed souls is due to the uncertainty regarding the exact direction of the journey of the souls after their death.

The Essence of the Death Rituals

When a loved one dies, the surviving relatives of that person, due to their grief, get temporary detachment from worldly issues. This is called Shmashaana vairaagyam or crematorium-detachment. This condition, when their minds are temporarily free of worldly attachments, is congenial for introducing the fear of sin in them. So traditionally, the relatives are supposed to read the secondary scripture called the Garuda Puraanam, in which horrible punishments are described for the corresponding sins. Either devotion to God (bhakti) or the fear of hell (bhayam) is essential to control the sinful nature of the soul. Actually, the Garuda Puraanam can be read at any time by anybody and it need not be confined only to the death ritual.

There is one important precaution that must be taken during the death ritual or any other ritual. That is that the priests should explain the spiritual knowledge of the holy scripture which is recited, to all the people attending it, so that it improves their devotion to God. Usually, the priests simply recite the scripture blindly in an unknown language (Sanskrit) without knowing or explaining its meaning. In that case, it is the responsibility of the relatives of the departed soul, who are performing the ritual to demand that the priests explain the meaning of the scripture. The performers of the ritual donate money to priests so they are like the customers who pay the priests for their services. It is said that the customer is like God. So, the donors, who are the customer-gods, must demand the explanations of the scripture from the priests. That is the only way to change these priests who have been blindly reciting the scripture for generations. It will force them to study the scripture instead of wasting time in blind recitation without knowing its meaning. There is no need to memorize the scripture and recite it. It can easily be read from the printed book. What is important is that its deep meaning should be properly explained. This deep meaning is the actual sacred spiritual knowledge. Merely reading out the translation of the Sanskrit verses is not sufficient. If the explanation of the deep spiritual knowledge becomes the main essence of the ritual, then it will benefit everyone. The people assembled will get a chance to leave their sinful behavior and get reformed. They will also develop devotion to God. Similarly, the priests themselves will get a deep understanding of the spiritual knowledge, which will reform them and develop devotion in them. If this is not done, then any type of donation to priests is not only a total waste, but it is also a sin that brings punishment upon the performer as well as the departed soul!

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