Ancestors curse (PITRU SAAB) Remedies
I would like to contribute to the debate on this important topic, so here I go.
Our Rishis havve said, categorically, that there is no mass emancipation for us. Each one to himself is the rule, the exceptions being a Prahlada, to whom the the Blessed lord vouched two favours. One that he would never again kill any of his descendents and the second that ten generations of his ancestors and ten generation of his successors would attain salvation. But then, these were no ordinary mortals, so let me bring this discussion to 'terra firma'.
The Gita says "Uddhareth aatmana aatmanam" meaning everyone has to uplift himself, no proxy is allowed. I am stressing this to emphasise that my father cannot go or not go towards salvation, because of anything I do or do not do. If he deserved to go to hell or to heaven, depending on his karma of many earlier and current life, that will be decreed as an axiom of the basis law of the Karma theory, that every action has an equal reaction. The intensity of the action determines the severity of the punishment or reward. Therefore, it is illogical to say that my performing or not performing obseqies or tharpanam or sraddha can toss him about from hell to heaven or vice versa. If a father had several sons, like my father had, some of whom do all the prescribed rituals and some do not, what would happen to such a person. Would he hang in the interrugnum, like Nahusha of old?
Why then did the great Rishis prescribe the rituals connected with the dead ancestors? They did it for various reasons, the principal one that come to my mind being the following:
The Vedas proclaim that it is Brahman, the One without a second, which is manifesting itself as the many. Bahubhyaam prajayeyeti, says the Taittariya Upanishad. Let me become the many, and it did so by mere wish. An extension of this idea is that I am my father, I am also my son. Aatma vai putra namasi, says the Vedas and this is the central piece of the mantras chanted when a new born son is identified by the father as his son, during the jaatakarma ceremony. So, I am an extension of my father, my son an extension of me. Or, I owe this body of mine to my parents, who sowed the seed and fertilised it, I should therefore be ever grateful to them for this act of their generosity. The best way to express my gratitude, and feel fulfilled in my own mind, is to be thinking of them always in a spirit of gratefulness. I worship and adore them during their lives, I imagine they are continuing to live with me, even after their death. So. the Rishis said recall them as many times as possible, on Amavasya days, Sankramana days, Grahanam days,
On their anniversay days, do it elaborately. Imagine your father coming home in the morning, and do whatever you would if, in facteveryone performed the rituals with much attention and total sincerity, they employed fear as an agent pf persuasion, and sais that non-performance will uemthey were living and visiting you. Welcome them, give them oil bath, new clothes, sumptuous feast, Dakshina as pocket money, seek their blessings and see them off after requesting them to come back for your welfare. "Kshemaaya cha punaraaghamanaaya cha". Now, during tharpanams and sraddhams, this is what a son does in the Sansrit language and by requesting two brahmins to double as the father or as the mother.
The secon brahmin is Viswedeva, who is supposed to escort the pitru to and fro.
The Rishis formalised this by appropriate mantras and mystified it. To ensure thateveryone went about this with sincerity and faith, they employed fear as an agent to ensure compliance. That is how all this talk of pitrukopam or pitrusaapam etc, came about. The Dharmasastras themselves say that the pitrus can only bless, even when the descendent is a recalcitrant fellow. The flip side is that professional astrologers use it as a ruse to intimidate unknowing and gullible people to earn a living. Whenevermiserable conditions are reckoned by them, they add pitrusaapam along with planetary misplacement as the reasons and prescribe palliative remedies.
To sum up, it is nice and civilised to be grateful to ones parents, who are yoursef, and as Savita says, distribute your wealth amongst others in society. This alone will enrich, ennoble and elevate the human mind and make it fit to receive divine blessings.
Sunday, 4 May 2008 04:14:21
I believe that these remedial rituals were all prescribed as a way to keep money flowing in society - much like how interest rates are lowered to boost an economy :-)
Whenever, something goes wrong in our lives, we would all like to understand why it happend. And when someone tells us that it is a curse from our unsatisfied ancestors, then we are satisfied, because than our mind tells us that there is a remedy at hand.
Unfortunately, things are not as easy as that. We are given difficulties so that we may grow out of some "bad habit" that we may have or because there is a "learning" involved in going through that misfortune. And this learning is necessary for our spiritual progress.
I am always amazed to read Kunti's prayer to Lord Krishna in the Bhagavatham. She says, "Let misfortunes befall me at every turn of life, O Krishna - beacuse it is only when this happens, that there is a remote chance that I may see you. Let my thoughts flow towards you every second of the day like the waters of rivers empty into oceans."
So misfortunes are the time to think about God and to go thought the learning prescribed for us. There is no root cause other than this ---
Just a few random thoughts --