Who Are the Devas?
Path to Siva Commentary, Lesson 29
Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami , 2017-07-24
Religion is the working together of the beings in the three worlds. The first way we actually experience something of a divine nature, the power and energy in a temple, is our sensitized feeling nature. The Saivite beings in the inner world, Deities, saints, sages, devas, guide and govern, help and protect, shower forth blessings and inspirations to the members of our religious family. All worship Siva.
Path to Siva, Lesson 29.
Good morning everyone.
Today we have Path to Siva, Lesson 29:
"Who Are the Devas? (Besides all of you.) Who Are the Devas?
"Gurudeva wrote: 'Religion is the bringing together of the three worlds. This means that the ascended masters, angels, devas, Deities, saints, sages of each of the world's religions, living without physical bodies in the inner worlds, guide and govern, help and protect, shower forth blessings and inspiration to the members of their religious family.' As a Saivite, you are part of a large and wonderful global family with members in all three worlds. The devas are beings of light, souls living in the higher level of the Second World, Antarloka, who assist God and the Gods. One of their duties is to help answer the prayers of devotees. Another is to receive newcomers to the inner world--those who have died--helping them adjust to their new life without a physical body. Each Hindu has special guardian devas. They are assigned shortly after birth at the name-giving ceremony, or later in life when one enters the great tribe known as the Hindu religion. Some devas are attached to individuals and families for many generations. Each family has numerous guardian devas who bless the home and keep the spiritual vibration strong. Some are drawn from nearby temples, attracted by the pujas performed in the home shrine. Still others are from far-off temples who return with the family after the yearly pilgrimage, to help in many ways. If the family neglect their sadhana and pujas, however, the home loses its spiritual power and the devas begin to slowly drift away. The devas guard us and the home silently and are seldom seen, though their presence in our lives is quite obvious in the form of good happenings and harmony."
Then Gurudeva's comment:
"These guardian devas in the heaven world cannot be seen by you with your physical eyes, but they can be seen and are seen by those who know how to use the psychic vision of their third eye. Nevertheless, you can feel their presence in your home. They surround you, they help you and the communicate with the great Gods of our religion to guide you through life."
That's an important point there, that the first way we actually experience something of a divine nature is our feeling nature. In other words we don't have a, walk into a temple and have a profound vision of Nataraja dancing, usually. That can come later on. But, we feel a strong vibration in the temple. We feel the presence of the devas. So it's out feeling nature that needs to be sensitized if it's not functioning in that way to start with. We need to sensitize it, to have that experience of the feeling of the power in a temple or feeling the energy of the temple.
And when I talk to the families that visit, it's a common theme. "Oh your temple is so powerful." Well they're feeling it. They know how to feel it. Their feeling nature is sensitized and they're feeling the strength of the temple and therefore are very uplifted by it.
Gurudeva's opening statement here: "Religion is the bringing together of the three worlds."
This is a very important aspect of religion and why religion is stabilizing in our life is that, there's more members of it than live on Earth. There's a whole multitude of beings in the inner worlds that are part of the religion, that work with the members who are on the Earth. So it's a working together of beings in three worlds that constitutes religion. And the beings in the inner world are working to help those that are on the physical plane. We are the ones who need the help. They don't have a physical body so they have less challenges than we do.
So it's an important definition of religion and sometimes when religion is talked about, you know, it's Hinduism, or religion, or a way of life, things like that. Those asking that question or making a statement of that nature don't see religion as the working together of the beings in three worlds but it's important that religion is seen in that way.
And, there's not just one religion. As Gurudeva's pointing out here "...Deities, saints, sages of each of the world's religions living without physical bodies in the inner worlds, guide and govern, help and protect, shower forth blessings and inspirations to the members of their religious family."
So, it's divided up by religion. Just like nationality. Usually, you can't be a citizen in more than one country. There are exceptions. But usually you are a citizen in one country and that country works with you and you work with that country. Likewise, you're a member of one religion and the inner world of that religion helps the members of that religion. It does not intrude into the lives of those who aren't members.
As Gurudeva says in writing about the devas and prayers. He says: The devas won't help unless asked. Sometimes we think, well, they know what I need. But Gurudeva doesn't put it that way. He says the devas don't help you unless they're asked to help you. That gets into writing prayers and that's a separate lesson so we won't say more on that. But those are interesting points.
Terms are from other writings. This is an important point here:
"The devas are benevolent beings of light abiding in the higher Antarloka. They help guide evolution from their world between births. The asuras are demonic beings of darkness, immature souls who temporarily inhabit Naraka, the lower Antarloka. Devas and asuras are usually subject to rebirth. We worship Siva and the gods. We neither worship the devas nor invoke the asuras. Karttikeya, Ganesha, and all the gods, devas and asuras worship Siva."
So the point here is that though the devas are religious beings we don't worship them. We reserve our worship for the Mahadevas and God Siva. Devas are the helpers and are subject normally to rebirth so we don't worship.
And then there's a caution in one of Gurudeva's writings. He says:
"The devas and the Deity were very careful not to develop the monks into an order of individual psychics which would lead each off the path into the dead end of and morass of ramifications. Therefore, they work behind the veil listening to intently to the needs and fulfilling in unseen ways."
In other words, the monks aren't supposed to have devas talking into their right ear, writing it down. That was reserved for Gurudeva. So they worked in unseen ways behind the scenes.
Next point is interesting.
"The devas in this second world are many. They have been with the line of gurus accumulating in number and power for hundreds of years."
So, that gives us a sense of guru parampara, it's more than the living guru. There's a whole inner group that passes to the next guru. And it's growing.
Then it, then in talking to the monks it says:
"These devas that help you in your daily chores, guard and protect your force-fields, travel with you on missions, are your friends and assist whenever possible especially during times of meditation and chanting."
So they're always working with us in those unseen ways.
And there's a reference in the Guru Chronicles.
"Caves of Jailani.
"These mystics also connected Gurudeva to inner plane beings especially a particular genie who worked with him to assist in his mission throughout his life, guiding potential disciples to the guru and often finding things that had been misplaced."
Very practical power. So, Gurudeva's at the Caves of Jailani, he was connected up to certain inner plane beings even at that time.
Thank you very much.