Ashtavakra (aSTAvakra) (Story From mahabharata)
- aSTAvakra samhitA (gItA) : The Conversation between Ashtavakra and Janaka : ( Links to previous posts)
aSTAvakra said :
- Give up the enemy kAma (desire), and artha (wealth, purpose, meaning) which is filled with anartha. And also give up dharma which is the cause of these two. And disregard them everywhere.
- Hindus in general give importance to 4 puruSArthAs or 4 goals of humans. These being desire, wealth, righteousness and freedom or liberation.
- In the gRhastha As’rama – householder stage – you pursue the first three with your spouse.
- The fourth – freedom is a personal goal, that your prepare for in the vAnaprastha As’rama (forest dwelling As’rama) and achieve in sannyAsa As’rama.
- When you want (kAma) to do good (dharma) -> you want (kAma) – money (artha) to do it with!
- So dharma can be the cause of and result of kAma and artha.
- In vAnaprastha As’rama you can give advice if asked but you have no more duties to society. Only to your Self. Your guru is your guide.
- In sannyAsa you have no duties to society at all.
- cANakya was quite firm that no one could become a sannyAsi till his duties to his elders were taken care of.
- as’Oka preached care for elders from his rock edicts.
- If the younger members of the family do not take care of elders, the burden on the state increases. (And the state does not like burdens!) I think the problem may have increased after the time of gautama buddha, when the young were inspired to join the sangha in youth.
- swAmI vivEkAnanda created an order of sannyAsins that serve the society.
- In terms of cakrAs you hang on to dharma and you are at 4th or anAhata cakra (air tattva). At the 5th or vis’uddha cakra – you still crave solitude, learning and scripture interpreting. Only in the 6th or gnyAna cakra do you experience some advaita and go beyond ‘dharma’ and ‘learning’.
jai aSTAvakra! jai janaka!