Being Rooted in Tradition vs Discovering Tradition

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By Durgadas, Ved Kovid
Dip.P.Psych
ALC, AMBT, AMPKT, R.A.P, A.Y.T

(c) Durgadas (Rodney) Lingham.
All Rights Reserved.


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…Sudras will expound the scriptures,
and Brahmanas will wait upon and listen
to them, and settle their course of duty
accepting such interpretations as their
guides.

Mahabharata, Vana Parva, CLXXXIX
(Mohan Ganguli Trans.)

The modern world through the lens of both millennials and snowflakes has shaped the world into a very socialist outlook and one of feelings and emotions over actual mental stability, logic and reason. We can claim that ‘The Universe’ gives, provides or teaches us and we can claim all sorts of falsehoods as a result of our self-proclaimed ‘feelings’ – also a layover from the ‘Hippie Era’, or as I refer to it as, The Age of Cultural Appropriation/Covert Colonialism.

Many people, even native people today don’t find their roots and cultures until they are in their thirties, forties or even fifties. There is then a trend (as the mind has already been culturally conditioned) to self-proclaim what is ‘tradition/traditional’ over what actually is. Here, the fine line between pretending/wishing one is traditional and being actually traditional is another thing.

When we are actually traditional, we can a deeper inner pull towards our native spirituality and esoteric teachings, regardless of what persuasion they were. We don’t simply decide to pursue such in later life, as our samskaras are so strong, that these bonds force us to go for such in an earlier stage of life, usually in our childhood to teens. For many, a premature mid-life crisis dictates otherwise where they wish to become ‘healers’ and ‘leaders’ of the world, but have no or little foundation or true interest in their youth. It is a by-product of the modern age of narcissism and sociopathy – the Ahankara Yuga or the Age of Egotism.

As per the Ayurvedic model, such can come about as a result of adharmika karmas or non-righteous actions that lead to prajnaparadha or impairing the intellect and causing us to do wrong – such as eating the wrong foods as well as environmental concerns such as chemicals in our foods, waters and such, environmental toxins we ingest daily as well as mental toxins such as those in the pop-culture of the world through the media and advertising as well as TV Shows – especially the plastic nature of celebrities on Reality TV shows. It fuels people into falsely believing their karma lies elsewhere or they can match or become like their idols – irrespective of their personal karmas dictated to by their former actions, or ‘money in the bank’ so to speak. As a result, people as in debt, borrow against their good karmas and accrue more ‘karmic debt’, increasing their negative samskaras and this further leading to more prajnaparadha. Is it any wonder out societies today suffer from predominantly psychological disorders and unrest?

People make themselves anxious by living by false maxims and emulating or trying to be clones of others. ‘Keeping Up with the Joneses’ isn’t always the best move, though many people who identify themselves as ‘spiritual’ actually live by such in a completely ignorant or unconscious manner.

Traditional energies and forces were rarely tapped into, except for powerful and rare yogis and others – it wasn’t for the lay yogi or person, even in traditional cultures. Such energies took lifetimes of sadhana and intense devotion to clear away negative samskaras to even perceive them in a pure light or state of consciousness – not simply wished for or claimed as a prize! Many pseudo-practitioners today, which includes a good 90% of the world’s native systems, don’t respect the efforts that went into such powers and energies, let alone recognise them as they are (instead, they are trapped in mental mudhabhavas or delusional states) – nor do they actually have respect for these energies and deities, which they treat like their own toys to do with as they wish, like a juvenile child unaware of the dangers of playing with a mouse-trap!

Here is the reason children were taught from a young age or had such a drive due to their samskaras – learning the traditional disciplines as they were, as well as the manuals detailing the effects and dangers of certain paths and energies or practices as well as performing them in their integral manners – not in a superficial half-hearted manner or one bereft of any true deeper knowledge at all. Often we find such people acting like millennials and snowflakes -playing the victim or being triggered and offended when true traditionalist explain the detailed nature of the path, versus that of “I-feel-so-isms” in the age of emotion and feelings. Within Hinduism, the system of the four pramanas or shoved to the side and in the sphere of Ayurveda, as also Vedanta Yoga, facets of knowledge are taken in their strategically cherry-picked rather than integral and contextual views to suit the virtue-signalling of self-proclaimed ‘late-comers’ into these systems to justify their own spiritual hyperboles!

As an example, Ayurveda is often treated as a Spa system or self-healing system. Yet, it’s own energetics relative to substances is somewhat atomic in nature and takes upon the role of understanding the metabolic process and the metabolic effects of every substance based on their taste as well as other energetics as their unique qualities. Such a holistically natural system of energetics is often ignored or not even studied in-depth by many who claim to study Ayurveda – instead, treating herbs and therapies all as generic panaceas over their specific actions as dictated to by classical Ayurveda or ‘Ayurvedic thinking’, as Dr. David Frawley calls it. Here, treating the symptom as opposed to the cause as many New-Age healing modalities claiming to be “traditional” do, are actually thinking and practising along allopathic lines rather than traditional. Their examinations are also done using non-traditional methods as well.

Many for example treat neem, turmeric, ashwagandha and other Ayurvedic/Indian herbs as generic panaceas rather than understanding their true traditional energetics and uses in classical Ayurveda (over ‘village Ayurveda’), where such aren’t always useful to all people, conditions or use in various climates etc. Primary, secondary and tertiary effects are also not considered and people make their generic formulas and compounds. This is probably the best example of how medical cultural appropriation fails. Another example is how anything relative to ‘vegetarian cooking’ and using turmeric and bay leaves, suddenly becomes ‘Ayurvedic Cooking’ – again ignoring the depth of knowledge and suitabilities of the individual as well as specific examinations.

Here, delusion and reality are two sides of the same coin. While many speak about the mithya or falsehood of the world, they ignore the power of maya or illusion behind it – ignoring the fact that they are actually being antagonistic towards the path of reality (sat) by ignoring fundamental principles such as viveka (discrimination), jnana (wisdom) and iccha (will) as well as kriya (action) on their part.

Perhaps the lesson here is how great the Divine Mother Maya is herself at causing people to fall into their own self-induced unconscious Stockholm Syndrome and sympathise with her mithya-bhavas!

 

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