November 26, 2014 - Lesson 228

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Sloka 73 from Dancing with Siva

What Are Special Duties of the Wife?

It is the wife's duty, her stri dharma, to bear, nurse and raise the children. She is the able homemaker, standing beside her husband as the mother and educator of their children and the home's silent leader, grihini. Aum.


The biological differences between man and woman are part of their human dharma. The two together constitute a whole. They are equal partners in joy and sorrow, companions and helpmates, yet their functions differ. The Hindu home and family is the fortress of the Sanatana Dharma, which the wife and mother is duty-bound to maintain and thus to perpetuate the faith and create fine citizens. As long as the husband is capable of supporting the family, a woman should not leave the home to work in the world, though she may earn through home industry. The spiritual and emotional loss suffered by the children and the bad karma accrued from having a wife and mother work outside the home is never offset by the financial gain. The woman's more intuitive and emotional qualities of femininity, gentleness, modesty, kindness and compassion are needed for the children's proper care and development. The Vedas encourage, "May happiness await you with your children! Watch over this house as mistress of the home. Unite yourself wholly with your husband. Thus authority in speech till old age will be yours." Aum Namah Sivaya.

Lesson 228 from Living with Siva

Difficult Issues

The Sanatana Dharma states that abortion is sanctioned only if the life of the mother would be lost by the birth of the child. Hindu scripture speaks strongly against the deliberate attempt to kill a embryo/fetus, telling us life starts at conception, when the astral body of the newborn child-to-be in the Antarloka is hovering over the bodies of the mother and father. The Kaushitaki Upanishad (3.1) counts abortion among such heinous sins as killing one's parents. The Atharva Veda (6.113.2) lists the fetus slayer, brunaghni, among the greatest of sinners.

Our research among scholars and swamis tells us there is nothing within Hinduism that opposes contraceptives or birth-control methods. However, if conception occurs, the man and woman have already taken on the karmic responsibility. It is dharma's path to then open the doors of their hearts to receive the incarnating soul. A miscarriage is something different--an unintentional action of nature, shall we say. Try again and the same soul may come through.

What about rape, incest, adultery or premarital pregnancies? Mothers are the life-givers of the planet. Even in these most terrible conditions, scripture gives no permission to injure, and certainly not to kill. However, it would be a sin upon the child to be born and kill his mother in the process. This is why abortion to save the life of the mother is the one and only exception which tradition allows. Yet, even that exception must not be resorted to lightly by some clever doctor or a husband falsely saying, "She might die," or "My wife's life is in peril," or by a devious wife herself claiming, "I am going to die if I don't abort this child." It must be an honest and competent diagnosis, not for the sake of money, not for the sake of saving face in the community, not for the sake of repudiating an infant girl. It must be an honest diagnosis made by compassionate, dharmic doctors.

The central principles at work here are ahimsa, noninjury; the energy of God everywhere; the action of the law of karma; the strict rules of dharma defined in our holy scriptures; and the belief in reincarnation. These five make a Hindu a Hindu and make not committing abortion an obvious decision.

Sutra 228 of the Nandinatha Sutras

Guidelines For Garlanding Others

Devotees of Siva do not garland members of the opposite sex, other than their spouse or blood relatives. Women never garland a swami, yogi or sadhaka, but may freely and lovingly garland their own satguru. Aum.

Lesson 228 from Merging with Siva

The Art of Seeing Auras

The big question always arises, "How do we know whether or not we are seeing an aura, or if it is just our imagination?" Actually, there is no such thing as imagination, according to the general use of the word. When we go within ourselves, we find that each thing that is so-called imagination, or "in the world of image," actually exists within the refined substance of the mind, and we are just becoming aware of it where it is imprinted in the vast internal substance of the mind. Only when we become aware of something that we imagine for a long enough period do we bring it out of the subtle areas of the mind and impress it upon the memory patterns of the physical brain. At that point we do not call it imagination. We begin to call it real. Finally, if we can bring it into physical manifestation, then we really begin to call it real. I suppose that this is the way man's individual awareness has become externalized, so that he looks at the external world as real and the internal, refined areas of the mind as being unreal or elusive. It was not always so, however, because with the absence of the things to externalize man's individual awareness, man is naturally within himself.

When awareness is within the very depths of the mind, so that color and light and sound are one and the same to him, he then looks at his fellow man from the inside out. He would first see the spine of someone he was looking at, and the lights within the spine, and then he would see the inner aura, then the outer aura of the individual, and last he would see the physical body. When awareness is externalized to the point where we see physical things as reality, then we see the physical body first, and have to strain to see the aura and the internal layers of consciousness.

Go within yourself and all things will be unfolded to you on the inner planes of consciousness, as well as in the external states of mind. You will begin to see through them all. Seeing an aura is like seeing through someone. Their physical body begins to fade just a little bit, and we see where their awareness is flowing in the wonderful world of the mind.

The colors around the person are first seen within your own mind. You would not clearly see them around their physical body. Later, after becoming adjusted to this new form of sight, you may see colors around an individual's physical body.

Where do these colors come from? All things in the mind are sound and color. Look around you and observe each vibratory rate of every physical object as having a sound as well as a color. Everything is sound. Everything is color. Everything is shape. Therefore, in the refined areas of the mind, all things are color and all things are sound, recognizable through the sixth sense of the all-seeing eye. This faculty is always awake. You only have to learn how to be aware of and use it, in a similar way an artist must learn to distinguish with his physical eyes between one shade of color and another and between the dimensions in a painting.