Verse 2 – Purusa is Lord of Immortality

We saw in the first verse of Purusasukta that Purusa was described as all-knowing, all-powerful and everywhere-present.  We then raised the question whether Purusa could be Yeshu Satsang (Jesus Christ) and embarked on a journey through Purusasukta with this question in mind.  So we come to the second verse of the Purusasukta which continues to describe the Man Purusa in very unusual terms. Here is the Sanskrit transliteration and the English translation (The sanskrit transliterations have come from studying the book Christ in the Ancient Vedas by Joseph Padinjarekara (346 pp. 2007)).

Second verse of Purusasukta

English Translation Sanskrit Transliteration
Purusa is all this universe, what has been and what will be.  And he is the Lord of immortality, which he provides without food [natural substance] Purusa evedam sarvam yadbhutam yacca bhavyam utamrtatvasyesano yadannenatirohati

Qualities of Purusa

Purusa is superior to the universe (the whole extent of space and matter) and is Lord of Time (‘what has been and will be’) as well as ‘Lord of immortality’ – eternal life. There are many gods in Hindu mythology but none are given such infinite qualities.

These are such awe inspiring attributes that they can only belong to the one true God – the Lord of Creation itself. This would be Prajapati of Rg Veda (synonymous with Yahweh of the Hebrew Old Testament). Thus this man, Purusa, can only be understood as an incarnation of this one God – Lord of all Creation.

But even more pertinent for us is that Purusa ‘provides’ this immortality (eternal life) to us. He does so not using natural substance, ie. He does not use natural processes or natural matter/energy of the universe in the granting or giving of eternal life. We are all under the curse of death and karma. This is the futility of our existence from which we long to escape and for which we work so hard in doing pujas, bathings and other ascetic practices. If there is even a small chance that this is true and that Purusa has both the power and the desire to grant immortality it would be wise to at least become more informed about this.

Compared to Rsis of Veda Pusthakam (Bible)

With this in mind let us consider one of the oldest sacred writings in human history. It is found in the Hebrew Testament (called the Old Testament of the Bible or Veda Pusthakam). This book, like the Rg Veda, is a collection of oracles, hymns, history and prophecy from many different Rsis who though they breathed long ago, they lived and wrote in different eras of history. So the Old Testament is best thought of as a collection or library of different inspired writings combined into a book. Most of the writings of these Rsis were Hebrews and thus are descendants of the great Rsi Abraham who lived about 2000 BC. However there is one writing, written by the Rsi Job who lived earlier than Abraham. There is yet no Hebrew nation when he lived. Those who have studied Job estimate that he lived about 2200 BC, over 4000 years ago.

…In Book of Job

In his sacred book, called Job after his name, we find him saying the following to his companions:

I know that my Redeemer lives,

and that in the end he will stand upon the earth.

And after my skin has been destroyed,

yet in my flesh I will see God;

I myself will see him

with my own eyes—I, and not another.

How my heart yearns within me! (Job 19:25-27)

Job speaks of a coming ‘Redeemer’. We know that Job looks to the future because the Redeemer ‘will’ (ie in future tense) stand upon the earth. But this Redeemer still ‘lives’ in the present – though not on earth. So this Redeemer, like Purusa in this verse of Purusasukta, is Lord of Time because his existence is not bounded in time like ours is.

Job then declares that ‘after my skin has been destroyed’, (i.e. after his death) he will see ‘him’ (this Redeemer) and at the same time ‘see God’. In other words this coming Redeemer is God Incarnate, just as Purusa is the Incarnation of Prajapati. But how can Job see Him after his own death? And just to make sure that we did not miss this point Job declares that ‘with my own eyes -I and not another’ will see this Redeemer standing on the earth. The only explanation for this is that this Redeemer has provided immortality to Job and he is anticipating the day when this Redeemer, who is God, is walking the earth and has provided immortality to Job so that he also is again walking the earth and seeing the Redeemer with his own eyes. This hope has so captivated Job that his ‘heart yearns within’ him in the anticipation of this day.  It was a mantra that transformed him.

…and Isaiah

The Hebrew Rsis also spoke of a coming Man that sounds very similar to this description of Purusa and the Redeemer of Job. Isaiah was one such Rsi who lived approximately 750 BC. He wrote several oracles under divine inspiration. Here is how he described this coming Man:

Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the Gentiles, by the way of the sea, along the Jordan—

2 The people walking in darkness

have seen a great light;

on those living in the land of the shadow of death

a light has dawned….

6 For to us a child is born,

to us a son is given,

and the government will be on his shoulders.

And he will be called

Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,

Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:1-2,6)

In other words The Rsi Isaiah is foreseeing and announcing the birth of a son and this son ‘will be called … Mighty God’. This news will be particularly helpful to those ‘living in the land of the shadow of death’. What does this mean? Our lives are lived knowing we cannot escape our coming death and the karma that rules us. So we literally live ‘in the shadow of death’. Thus this coming Son, who will be called ‘Mighty God’, will be a great light or hope to those of us who live in the shadow of our coming death.

…and Micah

Another Rsi, Micah, who lived at the same time as Isaiah (750 BC) also had a Divine Oracle about this coming person. He wrote:

But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,

though you are small among the clans of Judah,

out of you will come for me

one who will be ruler over Israel,

whose origins are from of old,

from ancient times. (Micah 5:2)

Micah said that a Man would come out of the city of Bethlehem in the region of Ephrathah where the clan of Judah (i.e. the Jews) lived. What is absolutely unique about this Man is that though he ‘will come’ out of Bethlehem at a certain time in history, he pre-existed this origin since the beginning of time. Thus, like Verse 2 of Purusasukta, and like the Coming Redeemer of Job, this Man will not be bound by time like we are. He will be Lord of Time. This is a Divine ability, not a human one, and thus they are all referring to the same person.

Fulfilled in Yeshu Satsang (Jesus Christ)

But who is this Person? Micah here gives us an important historical clue. The coming Person would come out of Bethlehem. Bethlehem is a real city which has existed for thousands of years in what today is called Israel/West Bank. You can Google it and see it on a map. It is not a big city, and never has been. But it is famous the world over and is yearly in the global news. Why? Because this is the birthplace of Jesus Christ (or Yeshu Satsang). This is the city he was born in 2000 years ago.  Isaiah gave us another clue because he said this person would impact Galilee.  And though Yeshu Satsang (Jesus Christ) was born in Bethlehem (as foreseen by Micah), he grew up and ministered as a teacher in Galilee, as Isaiah had predicted.  Bethlehem as his birthplace and Galilee as his place of ministry are two of the most well known aspects of the life of Yeshu Satsang (Jesus Christ).  So here we see predictions from different Rsis becoming fulfilled in the person of Jesus Christ (Yeshu Satsang).  Could it be that Yeshu is this Purusa/Redeemer/Ruler that these ancient Rsis foresaw?  Given that answering this question could be the key that unlocks how we who live in the ‘shadow of death’ (and karma) may be given ‘immortality’ it certainly is worth our time to consider. So we continue our investigation as we move further through Purusasukta and compare it with the Rsis of the Hebrew Veda Pusthakam.

 

Considering the Purusasukta – the Song of Praise of Man

Perhaps the most famous poem or prayer in the Rg Veda (or Rig Veda) is the Purusasukta.  It is found in the 10th Mandala and 90th Chapter.  It is a song for a special Man – Purusa (pronounced Purusha).  Because it is found in the Rg Veda it is one of the oldest mantras in the world, and thus it is worth studying to see what we can learn of the way to Mukti or Moksha (enlightenment).

So who is Purusa?  The Vedic texts tell us that

“Purusa and Prajapati is one and the same person” (sanskrit transliteration Purusohi Praja pati)  Madhyndiya Sathapatha Brahmana VII.4:1.156

The Upanishads continue on this same line by stating that

“Purusa is superior to everything.  Nothing [nobody] is superior to Purusa.  He is the end and the highest goal” (Avykat Purusah parah.  Purusanna param kincitsa kastha sa para gati)  Kathopanisad 3:11

“And verily beyond the unmanifest is the supreme Purusa… One who knows him becomes free and attains immortality (Avyakat u parah Purusa … yajna tva mucyate Janturamtatvam ca gacchati) Kathopanisad 6:8

So Purusa is Prajapati (The Lord of all Creation).  But perhaps even more important, knowing him directly affects you and me.  The Upanishad says:

‘there is no other way to enter eternal life (but through Purusa) (Nanyahpantha vidyate – ayanaya) Svetasvataropanisad 3:8

So we will study through the Purusasukta, the hymn in Rg Veda that describes Purusa.  As we do so, I will hold perhaps a strange and novel idea before us to consider:  Is this Purusa spoken of in the Purusasukta fulfilled in the incarnation of Yeshu Satsang (Jesus of Nazareth) around 2000 years ago?  As I said, this is perhaps a strange notion, but Yeshu Satsang (Jesus of Nazareth) is known as a Holy man across all religions and he did claim to be the incarnation of God, and both he and Purusa are sacrificed (as we will see) so this gives us  good reasons to consider this idea and explore it.  The sanskrit transliterations, and many of my thoughts on the Purusasukta, have come from studying the book Christ in the Ancient Vedas by Joseph Padinjarekara (346 pp. 2007)

First verse of Purusasukta

Transliterated from Sanskrit

Translated into English

Sahasra sirsa-PurusahSahasra ksah sahsrapatSa bhumim visvato v rtvaatyatisthaddasangulam Purusa has a thousand heads, a thousand eyes and a thousand feet. Encompassing Earth on all sides, He Shines. And he limited Himself to ten fingers

We saw above that Purusa is the same as Prajapati.  Prajapati, as explained here, in the earliest Vedas was considered the God who made everything – He was the “Lord of all Creation”.

We see in the start of the Purusasukta that Purusa has a ‘thousand heads, a thousand eyes, and a thousand feet”,  What does this mean?  ‘Thousand’ is not meant to be a specific counted number here, but means more ‘numberless’, or ‘without limit’.  So the Purusa has intelligence (‘head’) without limit.  In today’s language we would say he is omniscient or All-Knowing.  This is an attribute of God (Prajapati) who is the only one who is All-Knowing.  God also sees and is aware of all.  Saying that Purusa has a ‘thousand eyes’ is the same as saying that Purusa is omnipresent – he is aware of all because he is present everywhere.  In a similar way, the phrase ‘a thousand feet’ represents omnipotence – unlimited strength.

Thus we see in the beginning of the Purusasukta that the Purusa is introduced as an omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent Man.  Only the incarnation of God could be such a person.  However the verse concludes by saying ‘he limited himself to ten fingers’.  What does this mean?  As an incarnate person, Purusa emptied himself of his divine powers and limited himself to that of a normal human – one with ‘ten fingers’.  Thus, though Purusa was Divine, with all that entails, he emptied himself in his Incarnation.

The Veda Pusthakam (Bible), when speaking of Yeshu Satsang (Jesus of Nazareth) expresses exactly the same idea.  It says:

… have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross! (Philippians 2: 5-8)

You can see that the Veda Pusthakam (Bible) uses exactly the same thoughts as the Purusasukta does in introducing Purusa – infinite God incarnating to a limited human.  But this passage in the Bible moves quickly to describe his sacrifice – as Purusasukta also will.  So it is worthwhile for anyone who desires Moksha to explore these oracles further, since, as it says in the Upanishads:

‘there is no other way to enter eternal life (but through Purusa) (Nanyahpantha vidyate – ayanaya) Svetasvataropanisad 3:8

We continue verse 2 of Purusasukta here.

Achieving Moksha – Freedom from Karma

Karma, like gravity, is a law that is acting on you and me.  Karma can mean many things, but the fundamental idea is that we have deeds, and the merit for virtuous deeds and the penalty for evil deeds attach to our souls.  Unless our deeds are completely virtuous then there is a payment required of us, and unless that payment is made we are in bondage.

All of us instinctively feel this in some way.  And by our knowledge and wisdom we have invented many ways to deal with accumulated karma.  There is karma marga (way of works) where we labor hard to have good works.  There are mantras and pujas that are recited.  There are festivals and bathings that are sought, such as the Kumbha Mela Festival.  These ways are all difficult and we never have assurance that our efforts have been sufficient.  Were the motives behind our actions good enough?  Were a sufficient number of deeds good enough?  We are never sure. And so, like gravity, we live in karma, unable to break free and attain Moksha.  This is why before doing pujas people say the Prartha Snana (or Pratasana) mantram (“I am a sinner. I am the result of sin. I am born in sin. My soul is under sin. I am the worst of sinners. O Lord who has the beautiful eyes, Save me, O Lord of the Sacrifice.”)

Prajapati / Yahweh: God who Provides in Sacrifice

So who is this ‘Lord of the sacrifice’?  And how can He save us from this Law of Karma?  In the very earliest Veda texts, the God who was Lord of all Creation – the one who made and controlled the universe – was called Prajapati. It is through Prajapati that everything else came into being.

Around the same time that the Rg Veda was written down, about 1500 BC, another set of scriptures was also being recorded in another part of the earth – in what is now called the Middle East.  These earliest Hebrew texts of the Veda Pusthakam (Bible) is known as the Torah.  The Torah begins with the declaration that there is one God who is the Creator of the whole universe. In the transliteration from the original Hebrew this God was called either Elohim or Yahweh and these names are interchanged back and forth throughout in these Hebrew texts. Thus, like Prajapati in the Rg Veda, Yahweh or Elohim in the Torah was (and is) Lord of all Creation.

Early In the Torah, Yahweh also reveals Himself as the God ‘who Provides’ in a remarkable encounter with the Rsi called Abraham. We will look at this encounter in more detail later. For the moment I just want to note the similarity with Yahweh who provides (transliterated from Hebrew as Yahweh-yireh) with that of Prajapati in Rg Veda who is “the protector or supporter of creatures”.

In what way does Yahweh provide? We have already noted the need we have to get free from Karma, and we have noted the mantram which prays to the ‘Lord of the Sacrifice’.   The Rg Veda expands on this by telling us:

“The actual sacrifice is Prajapati Himself” [Sanskrit: ‘Pajapatir yajnah’]

Sanskrit scholar H. Aguilar comments on this by translating from Sathapatha Brahmana the following:

“And indeed, there was no other (victim) meet for sacrifice but that one Prajapati, and the gods set about offering him up in sacrifice. Wherefore it is with reference to this that sage has said: ‘The gods offered up the sacrifice with the help of the sacrifice – for with the help of the sacrifice they did offer up him (Prajapati), the sacrifice – these were the first ordinances, for these laws were instituted first” H. Aguilar, The Sacrifice in the Rg Veda

The Vedas from the earliest time declares that Prajapati (or Yahweh) recognized the need we had so He provided for our Karma in a self-sacrifice. How He did it we look at in later articles as we concentrate on the Purusa-Prajapati sacrifice of the Purusasukta in Rg Veda, but for now just think how important this is. The Svetasvataropanisad says

‘there is no other way to enter eternal life ( Sanskrit: Nanyahpantha vidyate – ayanaya) Svetasvataropanisad 3:8

If you are interested in escaping Karma, if you desire Moksha or enlightenment then it would be wise to be informed about what has been revealed about how and why Prajapati (or Yahweh) provided for us through self-sacrifice of Jesus so that we can escape karma and gain heaven.  And the Vedas do not leave us hanging.  In Rg Veda is the Purusasukta which describes the incarnation of Prajapati and the sacrifice He made for us.  Click here to see the introduction to Purusasukta which describes Purusa like the Bible (Veda Pusthakam) describes Yeshu Satsang (Jesus of Nazareth) and his sacrifice to bring you Moksha or Mukti (immortality).  Then we continue through these vedas and see how the ancient Rsi Job could declare his freedom from Karma and his anticipation of eternal life – he had been given Moksha.

The universal need for sacrifice

Sages and rsis through the ages have known that people live in illusion and sin.  This has resulted in people through all religions, ages and education levels having an instinctive awareness that they need to be ‘cleansed’ in some way.  This is why so many participate in the Kumbh Mela Festival   and why before doing pujas people say the Prartha Snana (or Pratasana) mantram (“I am a sinner. I am the result of sin.  I am born in sin.  My soul is under sin.  I am the worst of sinners.  O Lord who has the beautiful eyes,  Save me, O Lord of the Sacrifice.“) as explained in my post on the Kumbh Mela Festival.  Hand-in-hand with this instinctive need for cleansing is a sense of need to give a sacrifice to ‘pay’ in some way for our sins or the darkness (Tamas) of our lives.  And once again in the sacrifice of the pujas, or in the Kumbh Mela and other Festivals people give sacrifice of time, money, asceticism in order to meet this instinctive need to give sacrifice.  I have heard of people taking a cow and holding it by the tail as it swims across the river.  This is done as a puja or sacrifice in order to earn forgiveness.

This need to give sacrifice has been around as long as our oldest religious texts have been around. And these texts affirm what our instincts tell us – that sacrifice is very important and must be given.  For example consider the following teachings:

In the Kathopanisad (Hindu text) the protagonist Naciketa says:

“I indeed know that fire sacrifice leads to heaven and is the way to attain heaven” Kathopanisad 1.14

The book of the Hindus says:

“It is through sacrifice that man reaches heaven” Sathapatha Brahmana VIII.6.1.10

“by means of sacrifice, not only men but gods acquire immortality” Sathapatha Brahmana II.2.2.8-14

So it is through sacrifice that we gain immortality and heaven (Moksha).  But the question still remains as to what kind of sacrifice and how much is sufficient to meet the need to make a ‘payment’ or earn enough merit against our sins/tamas?  Will 5 years of asceticism be sufficient?  Will giving money to the poor be a sufficient sacrifice?  And if so, how much?

Prajapati / Yahweh: God who Provides in Sacrifice

In the very earliest Veda texts, the God who was Lord of all Creation – the one who made and controlled the universe – was called Prajapati.  It is through Prajapati that everything else came into being.

The earliest Hebrew texts of the Veda Pusthakam (Bible) is known as the Torah. The Torah was written approximately 1500 BC, around the time that the Rg Veda was composed. The Torah begins with the declaration that there is a God who is the Creator of the whole universe. In the transliteration from the original Hebrew this God was called either Elohim or Yahweh and they are interchanged back and forth throughout in these Hebrew texts. Thus, like Prajapati in the Rg Veda, Yahweh, or Elohim, in the Torah was (and is) Lord of all Creation.

Early In the Torah, Yahweh also reveals Himself as the God ‘who Provides’ in a remarkable encounter with the Rsi called Abraham. We will look at this encounter in more detail later. For the moment I just want to note the similarity with Yahweh who provides (transliterated from Hebrew as Yahweh-yireh) with that of Prajapati in Rg Veda who is “the protector or supporter of creatures”.

In what way does Yahweh provide? We have already noted the instinctive need for people to give sacrifice, but vaguely without assurance that the sacrifice that we bring is sufficient. What is so interesting is that in this very specific area of our need the Tandyamaha Brahmana declares how Prajapati provides for our need. It says:

“Having made a self-sacrifice Prajapati (the Lord of all Creation) offered himself for the gods” Tandyamaha Brahmana, chapter 7 of 2nd khanda.

[the sanskrit transliteration is “Prajapatirddevebhyam atmanam Yajnam krtva prayacchat”].

Here Prajapati is in the singular.  There is only one Prajapati, just as in Torah there is only one Yahweh. Later in the Puranas literature (written from 500 – 1000AD) there are several Prajapatis identified. But in the earliest text quoted above Prajapati is in singular – there is only one. And in this statement we see that Prajapati himself gives or is the sacrifice and He gives it on behalf of others. The Rg Veda confirms this by saying:

“The actual sacrifice is Prajapati Himself” [Sanskrit: ‘Pajapatir yajnah’]

Sanskrit scholar H. Aguilar comments on this by translating from Sathapatha Brahmana the following:

“And indeed, there was no other (victim) meet for sacrifice but that one Prajapati, and the gods set about offering him up in sacrifice. Wherefore it is with reference to this that sage has said: ‘The gods offered up the sacrifice with the help of the sacrifice – for with the help of the sacrifice they did offer up him (Prajapati), the sacrifice – these were the first ordinances, for these laws were instituted first” H. Aguilar, The Sacrifice in the Rg Veda

The Vedas from the earliest time declares that Yahweh or Prajapati recognized the need we had so He provided for us in a self-sacrifice. How He did it we look at in later articles as we concentrate on the Purusa-Prajapati sacrifice of the Purusasukta in Rg Veda, but for now just think how important this is. The Svetasvataropanisad says

‘there is no other way to enter eternal life ( Sanskrit: Nanyahpantha vidyate – ayanaya)  Svetasvataropanisad 3:8

If you are interested in eternal life, if you desire Moksha or enlightenment then it would be wise to journey along to see what has been revealed about how and why Prajapati (or Yahweh) provided for us through self-sacrifice so that we can gain heaven.  And the Vedas do not leave us hanging.  In Rg Veda is the Purusasukta which describes the incarnation of Prajapati and the sacrifice He made for us.  Click here to see the introduction to Purusasukta which describes Purusa like the Bible (Veda Pusthakam) describes Yeshu Satsang (Jesus of Nazareth) and his sacrifice to bring you Moksha or Mukti (immortality).  Click here to understand how to receive cleansing from this sacrifice of Jesus.

The Kumbh Mela Festival: Showing Bad News of Sin & our need for cleansing

The largest gathering ever in human history happened this year in 2013 – the Kumbh Mela festival which is celebrated only once every 12 years. A staggering 100 million people  descended on the city of Allahabad by the shores of the Ganges River through the 55 day festival season, with 10 million having bathed in the Ganges just on the opening day alone.

Devotees at Ganges for Kumbh Mela Festival

Devotees at Ganges for Kumbh Mela Festival

Organizers expected 20 million bathers on the peak bathing day of February 15, according to NDTV. I have been to Allahabad and I cannot imagine how these many millions could be there at once without all functions seizing up.  The BBC reported that huge efforts were made to bring things like toilets and doctors to meet the day-to-day needs of these people. These Khumb Mela numbers dwarfed that of the annual Hajj pilgrimages to Mecca that Muslims make – a ‘mere’ 3.1 million in 2012.

So why did 100 million people spend 120 billion rupees to bathe in the Ganges river? One devotee from Nepal reported to the BBC that

“I have washed off my sins”.

Reuters reports that

“I wash away all my sins, from this life and before,” said wandering ascetic Swami Shankranand Saraswati, 77, shivering naked in the cold.

NDTV tells us that

Worshippers, who believe a dip in the holy waters cleanses them of their sins,

In the previous 2001 festival I noticed on the then-BBC interview that pilgrim Mohan Sharma reported that “the sins we have created are washed away here”.

The universal human sense of ‘sin’

In other words, multiple millions will spend money, travel on crowded trains, endure congested situations and bathe in The Ganges River to have their sins ‘washed away’. Before we look at what these devotees are doing, let us consider the problem that they are recognizing in their own lives – sin.

Śri Sathya Sai Baba and ‘Right’ and ‘Wrong’

In my ‘About Me’ page I wrote about some moral teachings from Śri Sathya Sai Baba, whose precepts I thought admirable. I reproduce them again below. Ask yourself as you read them “Are these good moral precepts to live by? Should I live by them?”

“And what is dharma (Our moral duty)? Practicing what you preach, doing as you say it has to be done, keeping precept and practice in line. Earn virtuously, yearn piously; live in fear of God, live for reaching God: that is dharma” Sathya Sai Speaks 4, p. 339

“What exactly is your duty?…

  • First tend your parents with love and reverence and gratitude.
  • Second, speak the truth and act virtuously.
  • Third, whenever you have a few moments to spare, repeat the name of the Lord with the form in your mind.
  • Fourth, never indulge in talking ill of others or try to discover faults in others.
  • And finally, do not cause pain to others in any form”  Sathya Sai Speaks 4, pp.348-349

“Whoever subdues his egoism, conquers his selfish desires, destroys his bestial feelings and impulses, and gives up the natural tendency to regard the body as self, he is surely on the path of dharma” Dharma Vahini, p.4

As I read these I found that these were precepts that I should live – as a simple moral duty. But have you really been living by them? Have you (and I) measured up? What happens when we fail or do not measure up to these precepts. Śri Sathya Sai Baba continues his teachings by answering this question in the following way

“Generally, I speak sweet, but on this matter of discipline, I will not grant any concessions … I will insist on strict obedience. I shall not reduce the rigor to suit your level, ”  Sathya Sai Speaks 2, p.186

That level of rigor is fine – if you always meet the requirements. But what if you do not? This is where the concept of ‘sin’ then comes from. When I miss the moral target, or fall short in doing what I know I should do then I sin and I am a sinner. No one likes being told they are a ‘sinner’ – it is something that makes us uncomfortable and guilty, and in fact we spend much mental and emotional energy trying to rationalize all these thoughts away.  Perhaps we look to another teacher other than Śri Sathya Sai Baba, but if he is a ‘good’ teacher, his moral precepts will be very similar – too hard to do.

The Bible (Veda Pusthakam) says that all of us feel this sense of sin, regardless of religion or education level because this sense of sin comes from our conscience. The Veda Pusthakam expresses it this way

Indeed, when Gentiles (ie non-Jews), who do not have the law (Ten Commandments in Bible), do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them. (Romans 2:14-15)

Thus this is why millions of pilgrims feel their sin. It is just like the Veda Pusthakam (Bible) says

all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23)

Sin expressed in Pratasana Mantram

This notion is expressed in the well-known Prartha Snana (or Pratasana) mantram which I reproduce below

I am a sinner. I am the result of sin.  I am born in sin.  My soul is under sin.  I am the worst of sinners.  O Lord who has the beautiful eyes,  Save me, O Lord of the Sacrifice.

This expresses the same spirit as the Upanishad prayer I referenced in Welcome to Vedic ConsiderTheGospel.

The Gospel ‘washes our sins’

The Gospel addresses the very issue that these devoted pilgrims are seeking – to have their ‘sins washed away’. It promises a blessing to those who wash their ‘robes’ (ie their moral actions). The blessing is one of immortality (tree of life) in heaven (‘the city’).

“Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. (Revelation 22:14)

The Kumbh Mela Festival shows us the ‘bad news’ of the reality of our sin, and it thus should awaken us to look for cleansing.  Even if there exists only a remote possibility that this Promise from the Gospel is true, because it is so important, surely it is worthwhile to investigate it in a more thorough manner.

If you are interested in eternal life, if you desire freedom from Sin then it would be wise to journey along to see what has been revealed about how and why Prajapati (or Yahweh) provided for us through self-sacrifice of Jesus so that we can gain heaven. And the Vedas do not leave us hanging. In Rg Veda is the Purusasukta which describes the incarnation of Prajapati and the sacrifice He made for us. Click here to see the introduction to Purusasukta which describes Purusa like the Bible (Veda Pusthakam) describes Yeshu Satsang (Jesus of Nazareth) and his sacrifice to bring you Moksha or Mukti (immortality).