Archive for February, 2010

asuri bhavam – the problem of evil

February 25, 2010

“daivi hi esha guna-mayi mama maya duratyaya” – Maya indeed is only divine (daivi here means the divine controller of three gunas) and it could cause the delusion due to the “judgment” and “misjudgment” of a limited manifestation of a thing by an individual.

The “thing” of macrocosm (that is made up of 1. solid, 2. liquid, 3. manifested energy – fire, 4. gaseous, and 5. space – the ultimate envelope of all matter & energy elements) in itself is neither satvika, rajasa, nor tamasa.

The judgment of a thing by the specific microcosmic observer (made up of 1. manas, 2. buddhi and 3. ahamkara elements) could be a “pramana” – the right understanding or “viparyaya” – the wrong understanding based on the specific arrangement of these elements. (these two are the processes of mind/chittam; we have discussed the five chitta vrittis in one of the old post on this blog – the whole of yoga is to master these processes)

Lord’s lower nature is symbolized as a “snake” which signifies time. A snake can “form” multiple combinations of “coils”. All the eight fold differentiated elements are held within this “snake” of time that is continuously moving and appearing to change.

Snake is not transforming into a different thing when it is continuously changing the structure of coils. It is the same snake that can appear in infinite coil structures in a cyclic manner without transforming itself into anything else.

This type of thing is technically called as “vivarta” in samskrutam. It means “one appearing as many without transforming”.

Brahma’s vivartam is the World appearance. Multiple Worlds appear in Brahma at the same time.

With this introduction let me take the next verse of Lord’s declaration that deals with the problem of evil.

न मां दुष्कृतिनो मूढाः प्रपद्यन्ते नराधमाः।
माययापहृतज्ञाना आसुरं भावमाश्रिताः।।7.15।।

na mam dushkrutinah moodhaah prapadyante nara-adhamah
maayayaa apahruta jnaanaa aasuram bhaavam asritaah.

The lowest of mankind, foolish, evil-doers do not surrender to me as their knowledge is stolen away by the delusion (maaya). They take refuge in the “aasuri bhavam” – Ignorance of Darkness or daemonic nature.

Key points here are:
1. Knowledge is originally there with all microcosmic beings as “light”.
2. Due to the multiple arrangement or vivartam three different kinds of experiences appear to the microcosmic beings.
3. Being foolish, the non-discriminating intellect thinks the “shadow” is as real as “light” and gives equal importance to the DARKNESS.
4. At this stage a person’s knowledge is “STOLEN” by the delusion.
5. This person having taken by the “asuri bhavam” starts committing the evil actions that cause damage to his own self as well as the environment.

The evil doers are minority in number. Giving a lot of importance to the EVIL DOERS causes the EVIL to multiply. The technique of dealing with EVIL was discussed in one of the past blog post – chitta prasadanam.

Evil is not due to the LORD, who is full of LIGHT; It is merely due to IGNORANCE. Ignorance is only in the individual. Ignorance is temporary. As soon as one removes the Ignorance his own knowledge which is always there is no longer STOLEN!

Whenever the TOTAL IGNORANCE goes beyond acceptable level and it is going to inflict harm to any RIGHTEOUS being and if his intervention is needed to put things to order, LORD appears here immediately and corrects the situation. That is certain.

Instruction 24:

It is the individual responsibility to be RIGHTEOUS ALWAYS to progress towards the ultimate GOAL of human life. Reacting to evil with evil causes more EVIL! Always RESPOND to evil RIGHTEOUSLY!

om tat sat

bhava – appearence and delusion

February 24, 2010

From the last two posts we see that the GOD is the Universal. Then why can’t we “perceive” him easily? This is a natural question that comes to any attentive “listener”

Lord Explains:
ये चैव सात्त्विका भावा राजसास्तामसाश्च ये।
मत्त एवेति तान्विद्धि नत्वहं तेषु ते मयि।।7.12।।

ye ca eva satvikaa bhaavah, raajasaah, taamasaah ca ye
mattah eva iti tad viddhi na tu aham teshu te mayi.

“Bhava” or experience has two inherent components:

The experienced
Any “appearance” is a result of a specific arrangement of the differentiated universal elements of lord’s lower nature. i.e., It is the first five of eight fold differentiated nature – bhumi, apah, anala, vayu, kham these are called five elements.

The experiencer
This “appearance” is perceived by a specific arrangement of last three of the lord’s lower nature – Manas, buddhi and Ahamkara.

The experience is qualified as
a. satvika – pure, agreeable, harmonic
b. rajasa – active, passionate
c. taamasa – inert, dark

These three bhavas are ultimately from the Lord’s nature alone; but lord is beyond the three qualifications as satvika, rajasa or tamasa. But all the “experiences” and “perceptions” are qualified into one of the three bhavas always.

And :

त्रिभिर्गुणमयैर्भावैरेभिः सर्वमिदं जगत्।
मोहितं नाभिजानाति मामेभ्यः परमव्ययम्।।7.13।।

tribhih, guna-mayai, bhavaih, ebhih, sarvam-idam-jagat
mohitam na abhi-jaanati, mama, ebhyah, param-avyayam

All the beings of the world, being deluded by these three “bhavas” filled with the qualification (as pure, active, inert of the limited appearances) are unable to recognize and know the higher nature of ME (the lord)

दैवी ह्येषा गुणमयी मम माया दुरत्यया।
मामेव ये प्रपद्यन्ते मायामेतां तरन्ति ते।।7.14।।

daivi, hi, esha, guna-mayi, mama, maya, duratyaya
mam, eva, ye, prapadyante, mayaam, etam, taranti, te.

Divine is my MAYA that is “guna-mayi” (qualified with pure, active or inert attributes) and is difficult to overcome. He who surrenders on to me and takes refuge in me, crosses over this delusion.

With one last note I close this post:
There is a difference between Illusion and Delusion.
In Illusion there is absolutely no reality. It is fully made of NOTHING. Fantasy.
In Delusion there is a TRUE substrate which is mis-judged by the observer as something else.

The world appearance is a DELUSION. The true nature of LORD is mis-perceived by the individual due to this delusion.
By getting on to the path of yoga-vedanta one takes refuge in the LORD and crosses over the delusion and reaches the higher nature of LORD.

Note: This set of three verses are indeed very difficult to comprehend. One who has “sraddha” in the ULTIMATE TRUTH can only understand these three verses. I only made my best effort to explain these verses and I am fully aware of incapability of my skill and language to explain this. But still an attempt is an attempt….

im·mi·nen·cy, antaryamin or tanmatra of Lord

February 21, 2010

In the next four verses LORD explains his imminence as follows

रसोऽहमप्सु कौन्तेय प्रभास्मि शशिसूर्ययोः।
प्रणवः सर्ववेदेषु शब्दः खे पौरुषं नृषु।।7.8।।

पुण्यो गन्धः पृथिव्यां च तेजश्चास्मि विभावसौ।
जीवनं सर्वभूतेषु तपश्चास्मि तपस्विषु।।7.9।।

बीजं मां सर्वभूतानां विद्धि पार्थ सनातनम्।
बुद्धिर्बुद्धिमतामस्मि तेजस्तेजस्विनामहम्।।7.10।।

बलं बलवतामस्मि कामरागविवर्जितम्।
धर्माविरुद्धो भूतेषु कामोऽस्मि भरतर्षभ।।7.11।।

rasha aham apsu
bhuteshu (dharma a-viruddha) kaamaha asmi

I am the fluidity of liquid; I am the light of light giving things (sun and moon); I am the “pranava” in all vedas; I am the sound in the space; I am the manliness in men; I am the fragrance of the earth; I am the effulgence of effulgent things; I am the life of all living beings; I am the austerity of tapasvis; I am intelligence of intelligent; I am the seed eternal; I am the power of the powerful (before it is qualified as attraction or repulsion); I am the desire (the basic will power) in the beings that is not contradicting the DHARMA.

SO, lord is the antaryami of everything…. He dwells in everything as the UNIVERSAL tanmatra. But you can’t qualify him as a particular and identify as “this”… He is always THAT (tat + maatra = tanmatra)!!

When a specific musical note emerges from an instrument like Veena, it emerges in the universal of Veena Naada. Every note emerging from the Veena is Veena Nada but each note is named as sa, ri, ga, ma, pa, da, ni. Without the UNIVERSAL Veena Naada, there is no sa, ri …. etc., but the Veena Naada always manifests as one of the particulars as sa, ri, ga etc.,

In this example the “Veena Naada” is the Universal in which all the notes emerge from and merge back into. That is what LORD declares in this set of four verses. He is the Universal “seed eternal” (beejam sanatanam) of everything here.

గృహ్యం – తీసుకో తగినవి

February 20, 2010

विषादप्यमृतं ग्राह्यममेध्यादपि काञ्चनम् ।
नीचादप्युत्तमा विध्या स्त्रीरत्नं दुष्कुलादपि ॥ – Chanakya Neeti (I-16)

విషాదపి అమృతం గృహ్యం
అమెధ్యాదపి కాంచనం
నీచా దపి ఉత్తమా విద్యా
స్త్రీ రత్నం దుష్కులాదపి

విషం లో ఉన్నా కుడా అమృతాన్ని, అసుద్ధం లో ఉన్నా బంగారాన్ని, నీచుడి దగ్గర నుంచైనా ఉత్తమమైన విద్యని, తక్కువ కులం నుంచైనా స్త్రీ రత్నాన్ని గ్రహించవచ్చు – చాణక్య నీతి నుంచి

Platform As A Service – Private Cloud

February 17, 2010

Sometime back, Oracle has published this white paper.

This gives a clear vision of where Oracle is heading in the technological direction of Cloud Computing.

By standardization on the technology stack for enterprise application and fusion middleware enhancements, the PaaS seems the natural direction for enterprises in medium term.

Link to my past blog post on Private Clouds Here.

apara, para prakruti – the lower and higher natures

February 15, 2010

Let us take these four verses as a unit and “listen” to them as LORD declares his own “nature”. from Srimad Bhagavad Gita 7-4 till 7-7.


भूमिरापोऽनलो वायुः खं मनो बुद्धिरेव च।
अहङ्कार इतीयं मे भिन्ना प्रकृतिरष्टधा।।7.4।।

अपरेयमितस्त्वन्यां प्रकृतिं विद्धि मे पराम्।
जीवभूतां महाबाहो ययेदं धार्यते जगत्।।7.5।।

एतद्योनीनि भूतानि सर्वाणीत्युपधारय।
अहं कृत्स्नस्य जगतः प्रभवः प्रलयस्तथा।।7.6।।

मत्तः परतरं नान्यत्किञ्चिदस्ति धनञ्जय।
मयि सर्वमिदं प्रोतं सूत्रे मणिगणा इव।।7.7।।

My eight fold differentiated prakruti (ayam = this) is bhumi, apah, anala, vayu, kham, manah, buddhi (eva ca and also) ahamkaram (iti = thus)

The three states of matter bhumi = solid, apah = liquid, vayu = gaseous; the manifested energy anala (or the fire) and the non-manifested energy kham (or space, ether etc.,) are the five elements that make up the universe of things that are seen and perceived by the senses.

manas is the instrument of measurement and a faculty of doubt; buddhi is the resolve that finalizes a measurement and makes a judgment of the perceived.

ahamkaram is the one which differentiates the respective capabilities to the rest of the seven divisions. It creates similarity and (infinite way) differentiation amongst the senses/manas/buddhi.

This is the “apara” (the lower) nature; there is a “param” (higher nature) which holds or bears (dharayate) this lower nature called “jeeva bhutaam” or simply the jeeva.

In the macrocosm, the visible universe, it is similar to the basic force like “gravity” that holds the whole of universe together. In the microcosm, it is the vital force (the life force) that equally powers all the five senses, mind and intellect; without which the body is dead…. that higher force which holds/bears everything is termed as “jeeva bhutam” by lord is the “higher nature” of the Lord.

Thus understand (iti upadharaya) these two prakritis are the yoni = repository/source of all the beings (bhutani sarvani). “AHAM = I AM” the prabhavam (bringing forth) as well as pralayam (merging back) of whole of the worlds!

The pra+bhavam and pra+layam or bhavam or layam is the pair of opposites called birth and death in case of microcosm. This is a continuous cycle.

There is nothing whatsoever exists (kincad asti) other than me! In “me” (mayi) all the worlds are woven (protam) just like the pearls (maniganaa) strung in the thread (sutre) to make the necklace.

The “maniganas” represents the worlds made up of lower prakriti, sutram represents the jeeva bhutaam = higher prakriti that holds the worlds. Both these prakritis woven in each other forming a wonderful necklace to the supreme lord.

The higher nature is non-differentiated. It is Universal.
Due to the impact of ahamkara i.e., ego, the lower nature appears to be differentiated in eight fold universals as well as within each category infinite divisions of particular individual identities! These differentiated matter energy appearances build infinite microcosms of different sizes, shapes and tastes, emotions!

The process of "mimamsa"

February 10, 2010

“The Higher knowledge” is summarized by Lord in Srimad Bhagavad Gita chapters 7, 8 and 9.
Chapters 10 & 11 give a description and a glimpse of majesty of LORD as “told” & “shown” to Arjuna.
and the chapter 12 – “Bhakti Yoga” provides the ultimate instruction on fusing the individual self with the supreme.
The rest of 6 chapters starting from 13-18 deal with the essential relationship between the individual and the supreme.

As I have mentioned in an earlier post, this subject is very subtle and depends on the usage of correct technical words from Samskrutam language.

pada artham (word meaning), vakya artham (sentence meaning) and the lakshya artham (essential truth being conveyed) need to be realized.

Each “word” should be understood in the context, each sentence should be thoroughly understood and finally the “essential truth” the statements, groups of statements and the whole scripture is trying to convey should be realized. This process is called mimamsa.

Every “Philosophy” should provide clear answers to the following questions:
1. Who am i? (who is an individual being)?
2. What is “this” world? (The environment in which the individual is living)
3. Who is the controller of “i” and “this” or what is “THAT”?
4. What is the essential relationship between this and THAT?

The Knowledge of true nature of LORD shifts the paradigm from

I am a “part” of this!


I am THAT!

Instruction 23:

This paradigm shift is the objective of “saririka mimamsa sastra” or vedanta. The process of vedanta is based on a four step approach. (Please follow the link for an earlier blog post on this same subject)

Step 1: shravana = listening attentively to a realized GURU. This phase is also called as “samanvaya” or forming up a “Thesis” of answers for the above questions. This includes reconciliation of all different views on the above questions.

Step 2: manana = memorizing what has learned from shravana.
During this stage, any apparent contradiction with the other sources of knowledge need to be dealt with. This is called “avirodha” or thorough evaluation of “Antitheses”

Step 3: nidhidhyasana = internalizing the knowledge or “Synthesis” of above two steps.

All the above three steps happen in the “witnessing consciousness” of the individual. The purified jeeva.
They are not related to mental/emotional or physical process of day-to-day life.

Step 4: phala = the fruit of above three steps is not a “new product” achieved by actions. It is omnipresent. It is called realization of the ultimate relationship between this (known lower nature) and THAT (higher nature).

We will do “vichara” based on Srimad Bhagavad Gita (the words of Lord) in future posts.

SOA Governance standalone? or merge with IT Management?

February 9, 2010

“Governance” in general and SOA Governance in particular has been a buzz word for sometime now.

My definition for Governance is making sure that a “thing” works as it is supposed to work. Replace the “thing” with SOA, IT, state, country etc.,

One of the emerging trends for past few years is “Business Transaction Management” for managing the composite IT applications configuration, performance and “Governance”

Traditionally the IT management tools and frameworks have looked at the IT as operations management, quality management, performance management, configuration management etc., disciplines.

In this trend the problem of IT management is from a business point of view. That is good. So, what is happenning in the technology?

1. Application Performance Management
2. Composite Application Management using run time discovery of relationships between the components (services) of the application
3. Business transaction management tools

Here is the question:

Will the new trend merge in traditional IT Management tools?
A standalone set of new SOA Governance tools emerge due to the new trend?

Based on my “UNIX” philosophy, I think an integrated set of tools that consist of traditional IT management with the new SOA Governance would be a best fit to tailor to the needs of contemporary corporates!

Let us wait and see….

The "prerequisites" for Jnana Yoga

February 6, 2010

Effort can take a saadhaka only till karma yoga and raja yoga. The siddhi of these two yogas is limited to the “knowledge” of the nature of the individual jeeva.

Effort ceases immediately after tuning the “receiver”; it just starts receiving the signal from the universal knowledge store – iswara. During the karma yoga and raja yoga processes (of tuning the receiver) a saadhaka acquires the following four prerequisites.

Instruction 22:

1. viveka – the power of discrimination between eternal and non-eternal
2. vairagya – the dispassion towards non-eternal things that are worldly or heavenly
3. saadhana sampatti – subtle wealth required for saadhana
a. sama – internal sense control
b. dama – external sense control
c. sraddha – faith on iswara, scripture (iswara’s words) and guru (the medium of delivery)
d. titiksha – endurance capacity to endure adversity of internal and external nature
e. uparati – being happy with what is in hand not hankering for objects
f. samadhanam – equanimity towords pairs of opposites i.e., samadhi

4. mumukshutvam – intense desire for liberation

Liberation is only possible through “Jnana”. The Jnana is acquired by “jignasa” or attentively listening to the words of lord!

In the choosen “text” Srimad Bhagavad Gita has 18 adhyayas. The first six adhyayas are dedicated to teach the effort required to gain prerequisites to higher knowledge of LORD (and the correct realization of true nature of individual – jeeva); The second set of six adhyayas explain the nature of LORD (iswara and his power that manifests as world – jagat) in his own words; and the third set of six chapters explain the ultimate relationship between jeeva and jagat & iswara.

“jignasa” actually means “vichara”. It is not questioning. It is the process of getting the answers.

This “brahma jignasa” is called vedanta. It is the process of gaining the right knowledge of infinite (brahma means infinite) effortlessly.

Hybrid Columnar Compression (HCC)

February 3, 2010

Oracle has introduced a new data storage technology in Exadata V2 called Hybrid Columnar Compression. This method uses a “compression unit” that is made of several rows; it is physically stored in compressed “column vectors” in multiple blocks of storage.

There are two flavors of columnar compression that are optimized for “QUERY” (warehouse compression better for executing queries) and “ARCHIVE” (best data storage for archive compression)

Each of the QUERY and ARCHIVE come with another modifier to set the “LOW” or “HIGH” compression mode.

This technical white paper gives an overview of the new technology.

This article on Oracle Magazine may also be useful in understanding this new feature.

More data can be stored in “less” space. Good!