Brahmasrii Dr K C Varadachari
KABANDHA PHILOSOPHY AND RAHU PHILOSOPHY
SRI VENKATANATH of the Visistadvaita School of Philosophy wrote in his Paramatabhanga that there are two schools of Philosophy known as Rahu Philosophy and Kabandha Philosophy. Every one acquainted with Indian astrology knows that Rahu and Ketu are shadowy bodies. Astronomy has stated that these two nodes of the Moon are placed at the distance of 180 degrees from one another. Indian astrology explaining eclipses states that the Rahu and Ketu are head and tail of a Dragon or Asura who tried to become immortal by eating Nectar or the potion of immortality and being discovered in the act was severed into two. Obviously Rahu and Ketu became the two ends of the Asura conceived as a serpent. Though thus disconnected or disjoined they are immortal portions and bind the world or earth in a sense. A Solar eclipse occurs when the moon intercepts the rays of the Sun
from falling on the Earth and the Earth is covered by the shadow of the Moon: this is described as the swallowing of the Sun: and in the Lunar eclipse the earth interrupts the rays from falling on the Moon, and the shadow of the Earth falls on the Moon. This is the swallowing of the Moon. This is mythology.
Whatever this might the Rahu Philosophy takes its name from this severed head which is immortal. It is a philosophy disconnected or abstracted from the beginning or physical and vital life. It is the philosophy disconnected or abstracted from the being or physical and vital life. It is the philosophy of mere mind uninterested in the world and life of matter and life and is concerned with pure thought and it is geometrical or mathematical. It gains by its abstraction from life and food or matter, its power. This abstract power is enormous. Indeed it was the expressed opinion of the great mathematician who afterwards turned a Philosopher that abstraction realizes the truth of Nature better and knows deeper than concrete science itself. Mathematics guides all knowledge. Rahu is jnanakaraka-the instrumental force of knowledge in astrology. More abstraction, more penetration into the
form of things and therefore more power. Rahu inverted by metathesis becomes ahura; the great god of Zoroastrian Religion-the Asura or power of Gods of the Veda itself. Thought, abstract thought, is capable of knowing Reality and it alone grants Reality to being. It can shape Reality also. Such is its promise-the promise of mathematical Idealism.
Rahu in Indian astrology is said to be the instrumentator of jnana or knowledge. Knowledge is thus acquired through the karakatva (instrumentation) of this abstract thought force. But it is also a great liberating force but its excessiveness it is that causes greatest idealistic philosophies dependent upon the abnegation of all world values. He is a great philosopher of rationalism mathematics and abstraction and rejoices in his own vast domain. There is no heart in him, it is a reality of its kind but capable of being illusory or rather shadowy.
Ketu, his counterpart, is considered to be the tail or the ray or fire or flag of being. Being fire it is emotional and yet it is considered to be also the moksa-karaka, one who leads to liberation or the significator of
liberation, that is the ultimate. It is true that liberation can be of various kinds and levels. Perhaps one may say that wherever Rahu is in a horoscope, there is knowledge (abstract and powerful) in respect of that bhava, and wherever there is Ketu in a horoscope there is liberation in respect of that bhava. But it is a significator of aspiration for the highest realization an ascending force even like fire-a carrier of all offerings to the Ultimate. No wonder the Brahmana says that Agni is avamah and Visnu is paramah-the lowest and the highest among the Gods, and if the imagery be accepted, Agni is Ketu, then Visnu is the Rahu, and it is stated that it is Visnu who separated the Rahu from the Ketu, and it is the business of the whole edifice of Yoga to unite the disjoined, to join the disjoined: within us is the aspiration urging forward and upward, and above us is the sovereign head that has to be attained-the power that is great and all-enveloping.
A Ketu philosophy would be the philosophy of aspiration, of scared will. But it too can go wrong by excess. A philosophy of sacrifice or yoga apart from the exercise of knowledge-a mudha-bhakti or devotion that permits no enquiry or abstract ascent to higher and
higher knowledge, would ultimately defeat itself. But in a sense the heart-philosophy is nearer to this than the head-philosophy. Inseparable however in reality, however separated by the Supreme Visnu for the safety of the worlds of the gods, these two immortals have to be reckoned in all integral philosophies.
The contradictory to Rahu philosophy is not Ketu philosophy because it is integral to it, though separated from it, but the Kabandha Philosophy.
If the soul of man remains in the brain or intellect or Buddhi in Rahu Philosophy, the head of the Kabandha is in his belly or stomach.
Kabandha is an asura. In the Ramayana he is described as having his head in his belly. The symbol reveals that there was a person whose thoughts were all centered in the eating and everything that he could get he could interpret only in terms of eating. All his aspiration was for a good meal every day. All creatures were intended for his eating more than for his service. We could see that in the modern world all efforts proclaim that every thing is for eating. Though all
scriptures prescribed that only plants can be food for man or animal, yet since some animals had taken to living on other weaker animals man also has fallen into line with these carnivores. Man was granted a greater power than eating the animal for the animal can be domesticated and made useful in growing more food and not be themselves food. The concept of Vahana or vehicle was mainly intended to explain this transformation of the concept of use or usefulness. All animals are useful for man’s work of developing agriculture. Domestication of all animal life is the great leap of man over the animal since he can now control production of plants for his food. Even food could be got from animals but food produced by them in the form of milk etc., Due to exigencies of climate and change and struggle for survival, man began to cultivate the taste for animal food and turned into animal eater rather than domesticator and now it is not restricted to that at all but for the extraordinary purposes of just skins and so on. Kabandha philosophy; thus leads to what we may call eating-philosophy; today most meetings and conferences are conferences for eating and eating everything, and all social life is built around this
congregational eating and promiscuous eating. Though we can say that all satisfaction and allurements are centered round this eating table, and great transaction are taking place round the eating table, yet man is not just an eating animal: values are not just eating and there need not be all this food-centeredness. Food can corrupt and that is why purity in food habits has been said to be most important for being: aharasuddhi is what leads to sattva-suddhi; as the Chandogya Up says. But we are reminded about this being just a kitchen philosophy by very good men who hardly worried about the food. The trouble has been that there has been the basic distinction between the meat-and flesh eating and the plant eating persons and this distinction is basic somewhat to a proper perspective in human affairs as well as spirituality. The former is gross and leads to loss of sensibilities about life whereas the latter does not lead to insensibility about life. Men who can kill animals for good would hardly hesitate to kill men if not for food but for other things linked up with their food and enjoyment.
The evils of this world are more dependent upon this loss of feeling for life and also the extraordinary
appetite for such food that it verily makes for the asura. The power of food is more than the power of the brain. The materialist civilization is geared up for this great appeal to food as the welfare condition of the State. The State’s function is to provide food for all: this is truly a welcome thing. But food-habits must be cultivated that will not demoralize man and make him brutish and short-a pseudo-cannibal or incipient one. The great efforts of the Buddha and Mahavira were precisely to put and end to this flesh-centered or sacrificial-animal-food centered civilization of the greedy sacrifices in the name of Brahman. This shift to food-centeredness from God-centeredness is easily had because food is a prasada offering going along with worship. It is a sort of conditioned reflex that has led to linking up sacrifice with flesh-food, or temple-going with sweet-food and so on. It is true that Anna or food is a primary need but it is regulated food that is satvik that brings about health and real happiness rather than other things that promote other tendencies like sexual and other irritations and aberrations. One of the most important features of modern civilization is the growth of hotel and eating houses in plenty, which cultivate and condition
tastes that help not health and goodness in nature but intimidate man to do things which he dare not dream of doing without them. Moral inhibitions are removed and man is turned into a beast-and what with wine and other things. Kabandha civilization starting from a necessity which is good that preserves one from falling below the human line or plane of being develops the tastes that bring down man to the level of a hunter and prepares for the loss of his sensibilities in other directions. His knowledge is centered on these wants and appetites and does not go beyond the sense of smell of food. Indian thinkers always associated food with smell, for smell is the indicator of earth or food, its guna so to speak. Where there is smell there is food and no wonder we are earth bound men relishing smell and seeking it.
Kabandha philosophy is most enticing to the earth-bound souls who seek to live forever for food. Life is for eating-happiness rather than eating is for living and growing into a real being of thought and realization and values that are truth and wisdom. Man’s food makes him survive as an animal but his life itself is capable of being renounced in his search for other ends
and goals that appears to him on his onward march. These values that are apprehended by the conscious being are firstly those that make the food-value instrumental for their realization if possible or even to be renounced if necessary. In other words food may be an instrumental value to higher values but it is just possible that it may not be for its renunciation even may be necessitated for the realization of the higher values. Thus it is emphasized that food must be abstained from – fasting (anasakayana) should be restored to in order to show that man does not live by food alone: food is necessary for the physical body, breath is necessary for the vital existence, but it is mental impressions that are necessary for a mental being and it is the higher mind impressions and apprehensions that make one who has yearning for highest values live at all. This hierarchical perceptions reveal that Kabandha philosophy may be displaced by Kama philosophy but both will be surrendered to the dharma (mental) philosophy that seeks the discernment of a law which makes one live meaningfully. But even this will have to be given up for the sake of larger dharma or worlds beyond the physical, beyond life itself. Life itself which has been the
end for most becomes an instrumental value. For life itself is seen to be transcended by the mind which becomes life for the mental being. One becomes aware of one’s possession of a mental body which outlasts the physical and the vital. And there are those who renounce the mental body (the Rahu-body so to speak), in order to arrive at that life or existence which transcends the individual finite yearning ineffectually for the infinite knowledge and power that are beyond the mind (manas). Thus the Upanisadic concepts of sheaths or bodies becomes meaningful only in terms of the realization of what is life in matter or by food, life in life through sexual desire, life in mind through intellectual knowledge of law and order (dharma) or society, and life in supermind or cosmic life which provides him with his spiritual body beyond this world or earth-bodies which can life through all the disasters and renunciations of the lower bodies.
Kabandha symbolizes this lowest type of body, which one gets in the fall from the high state for there is the truth that as one relishes that lower one becomes lower and life itself appears to be the lower. Thus an ascending spirit (deva-sampatti) seeks renunciation of
the lower bodies for the sake of attaining the highest body of ananda, whereas the descending body or spirit takes delight in the life of grosser and grosser bodies which may well be called the formations or concretions or involvements or veilings of the higher in the lower. The Kabandha of the Ramayana got tired of his annamaya sarira so to speak which lived by anna or food and sought the highest by seizing the Divine Rama and Lakshmana and that led to the severance of his life in annam and for annam. He was restored to the effulgent form –his spiritual nature that lived by the vijnana and the ananda. On lives by matter not for the sake of matter but for the sake of the supreme self; knowing this truth one renounces or enjoys life in the Supreme Self. This is the truth that one must learn if one wishes to get over the diabolical preachings of the food-philosophy.
Sri Venkatanatha applies the term “Rahu Mimamsa’ to Advaita and Kabandha Mimamsa to Purva Mimamsa which does not accept Isvara (nirisvara mimamsa) and these two should signify that the former denies the Karma portion of the Veda and accepts only the upanishads called Veda Siras (head of the Veda)
though actually it is the end of the Veda (Vedanta), Rahu being the head of the dragon or Asura, the Advaita Vedanta which denies the karma-kanda is called Rahu mimamsa, Similarly the Purva Mimamsa which denies the Upanishads as authority and clings to the Karma performance or dharma rites and rituals and attainment of enjoyments of heaven and etc. is interested in enjoyment (bhojana) is Kabandha Philosophy. No wonder that Vedanta Desika (Venkatanatha) has not called Advaita Ketu Philosophy. [Because it is the Mimamsa about the tail of the Veda (Vedanta) for it is also called the Head (Siras) of the Veda, by convention because it teaches the paths of attainment: though really the Purusa-Sukta should be called the highest teaching or Veda Siras].
Advaita refutes the world of appearance as Maya or illusory as changing and as full of misery. It therefore emphasizes the need for realization of the Absolute Brahman apart from Maya and as such is an abstract philosophy. It is the philosophy of renunciation of the world and the creation of Brahman which are considered to be illusory and full of self-contradiction. It bases itself on the Axiom of Brahman’s incorruptibility
and transcendence, an axiom accepted from the Scripture of course but even like the axioms of geometry not evidenced by the experience of the world but to which they are applied with success undoubtedly in a limited way, for we find that other sets of axioms equally apply, as we know from Einstein and Euclid and Reimann and others. Abstract axioms are at basis based on intuitions and revelations and insights and not gained by inductions. Thus it has been argued that Advaita is an intellectual philosophy with some high intuitions thrown in. Thus mere transcendentalism or anti-phenomenalism is intellectual abstractionism.
Purva Mimamsa since it is much more concerned with getting phenomenal benefits by the performance of the rites and rituals is a bread and butter philosophy-or flesh and meat philosophy-or sensual philosophy too for it is dependent on desires for everything both in heaven and earth for which it seeks help of rites and rituals and gods as agents who grant these automatically or impersonally.
Though Humanity's progressive organization on the basis of better distribution of wealth and betterment of the conditions of labour and life is possible only to intelligence or rationality consistently and purposefully applied, a great part of Humanity is, as it were, immune to the appeals of Reason. Factors there are within the human being that refuse to be so cavalierly treated. They insist upon their rights within the human society. The great upheavals in society reveal that the progress of reason has not been as much as desirable, and that at the end of each of these we remain as we were.
What happens in society is mostly a rationalisation of sentiments and instincts. Mystification happens and a mythology is set up. Reason too is made to come to man in the form of sentiments and mythology. Hence there is so much excellence in mythology and so much of truth in its metaphorical
utterances. This latter process of reason appearing in the forms of taboo and totem, in superstitious forms is very clearly demonstrated in the highest civilizations. The most prominent example of this sentimentalized rationality is the Hindu practice of Soucha and Yoga. Here reason has to gain sentimental value to be useful to society. But we would rather have this mode of organization than that sentiment should parade as reason. There is, however, a danger in the sense that man does not understand the purpose of a sentimentalized reason, and ends in blind acceptance.
In the definition of intelligence and its measurement, we are not in the presence of the equally important factor, the emotional and personal quality that alone can reveal the positive value of the individual to the society. Reason pure and simple is not a dynamic farce of transformation: emotion alone gives it impetus and a hold on the human consciousness. If Industrial Psychology has helped the invention of methods of measurement of intelligence, classification of work, and conditions of work which would not only make for better output and humanize industrial conditions at the same time, it has not found the difference in emotional quality.
The factor of interest has been investigated, but it has not been linked properly or even scientifically with emotional conditions. There has been immense increase of insanity due to maladjustment of conditions of labour and unsanitary conditions of life of the working classes. Better feeding, better environment, that is, a feeding and an environment not dependent upon the precarious earnings of a father or widowed mother, has led to a remarkable fall in the mortality rate in many industrial towns. It has been found also that the fever and haste of modern life with its craze for speed and excitement has not a little to do with nervous prostration and utter breakdown. This has led to emotional disturbances.
We have found one supreme physiological truth that emotional disturbance is obviated by nervous organization and control. Putting this in psychological terms, what the nerves are to the emotional centres, the glands, that is intellection are to emotion. Prof. McDougall's theory of emotional drainage is a statement of the conditions under which emotions occur. Emotion occurs in the manner of an explosion or out letting through nervous channels, muscles. glands
etc, when there is a damming up of energy in the nerves due to excessive nervous exhibition, in one direction and excessive nervous demand in another direction. Clearly, then, the entire dynamic centre of man's life consists in the emotional instability or stability dependent upon the demand for energy. But it is also seen that the overflow, explosion and drainage of this vital factor it not identical in all persons.
No doubt, the prude, the sentimentalist, the meticulous, and the society-lady and even the animals register the fundamental emotions in an identical manner. The science of expression in emotions is identical for any one emotion. But it is not known, nor will it ever be known by what particular stimulus they could be made to register it. Habit and environment determine a lot, especially in the case of minor emotions. An object, which appears dangerous, may provoke fear and then intense action. Rage may be produced by an object or person who interferes with action. But as to what objects are dangerous and what objects do interfere with action, that is altogether individual selection. What one detests and gets wild with may not be what another likes and enjoys or what
still another person is indifferent to. The indeterminacy of the explosive moment is the most important psychological fact.
There is in spite of this indeterminacy a factor of universality in emotion. That is what every one recognizes as fear, anger, rage or joy when he sees it. Men can communicate with each other through their emotional expressions. Great psychologists like Darwin, Ribot, McDougall have analysed these signs and the total form, gestalt of these emotions. But then emotional indeterminacy and its explosive force have been eluding them.
Even in the best organization of society, alteration in the environment, feed, etc., have made emotions not feeble but infrequent. Though the animal expression of it has gone, there is none the less an expression of it in the more disorganised units of nationality and community in a very similar manner. The instinct of self-preservation and fear have alone been able to keep men away from the expression of diabolic frenzy and utmost cruelty. In the vaster organization of our national and communal life we are not on firmer
ground. We have tried to impose a standard ethics, an ethics of restraint on the members and have succeeded in checking full expression in its animal way, but we have not been able to arrest expression as such. In the family, because of a mixture of instincts we are able to live in peace. In a community, because of our gregarious instinct, we are able to live without conflict. We give up some of our methods lest the same methods be meted out to us. On the whole, we are restrained in our less desirable instincts. But when we come to conflict between communities and families we are not on firm ground. A geographical boundary may guarantee the same unity that we find in the family and maintain the peace through affection for the members. It is, however, only in times of danger to the entire community or to the boundary we unite in one body and subscribe our wills to the preservation of our inviolability. In all these what happens is the restraint of our emotions. But as would be seen instincts check instincts: they limit emotions, and not reason. Reason comes in later to justify the control, or the morality, and this on the basis of utility. There is also the protective frenzy at work in the community and the nation.
Irrational control pleads for a rational existence here. All the same even in the society, there is needed an outlet for the dynamism of emotion. Sports, competitions etc., just exist for these explosions of emotion. But when in a Puritanical society the strain on the nervous mechanism is maximum, or the limit of repression is reached, there is a terrific outburst of emotion. Emotion seen under these conditions is not linked up with any particular instinct nor idea. It is impossible to canalise it into any channel other than hatred and greed, nor with either of these could this be permanently linked. Emotion is polyandrous, in its being there is neither faith nor sanctity. Its frenzy is always primitive, repressive, barbaric and sudden. No wonder despite all attentions to its study on its physiological side by Prof. Cannon and Pavlov, and on its psychological side by McDougall, Ribot, Claparde, Lange and James it remains as mysterious and baffling as ever.
The fundamental determination of emotion as extrovert or introvert by Psycho-analysts like Adler and Jung has not produced a more satisfactory result. Measurement of Emotion with the aid of Galvanometer etc., has been most unscientific as William Brown and
others have shown. It is one of the most credulous piece of psychological fiction. It does not measure the quantity, nor nature of emotion. In what sense it could be considered to be a measurement God only knows. It shows at most that the neural discharge in emotion is electrical. In muscular activity the heat and the activity done could be measured. But not the amount of electrical energy released. As to the very specious claim that the discharge of electricity enables us to determine the criminal from the innocent, well, it is only one of the American yarns.
The measurement of intelligence itself is an attempt to arrive at a constant for each individual and at a dependable statement of a man’s maximum capacity for work and organization. This itself is arrived at by determining the standard for the age and comparing it with a particular individual. The emotional measurement does not depend upon a standard for an age, nor could the standard be arrived at. In fact it appears to work at an inverse ratio. As age advances, there is more nervous control and, therefore, less emotion display. Nutrition and better environment and education do lessen fierceness, and the direction of emotion is also
regulated. Despite all these difficulties, there is a need and a vital need for determining the emotional quotient of an individual.
Intelligence quotient has been found necessary on the belief of a maximum or limit of intelligence of each individual. Behind this belief is Spearman's proposition that here is a maximum power invested in each individual to which he could attain, but beyond it he could not go. But it is possible to diminish the power by malnutrition and prostitution of energy. On the truth of this proposition of limit also depends the truth of the emotional maximum. We could only arrive at this truth by statistics brought out by investigation. That would be our step. We have, however, stated, at the outset, our a priori reasons for its non-acceptance. But we have also found that they do not sufficiently warrant our giving up the search for the emotional quotient. We have proved that men are not equal in intelligence. That they may be lifted to equality by better adjustment is a probability on which we stake our experiments. "Intelligence and Passion are very close to genius. Who in our century will have the honour of bringing them together?" asks the artist and painter Albert
Bernard. Emotional quotient then is a necessity that we perceive in the very success of the I. Q.
THE RELIGIOUS MORAL AND SPIRITUAL BACKGROUND
I am sure that there is need to define at least provisionally what we mean by Traditional Culture. There are many cultural groups in South India and though each one of them has its own unique pattern yet they have their own spiritual and religious and social traditions. We have secondly to consider what kinds of industrial developments, if already present in sufficiently advanced stages, have had their impact on these traditional modes of life and personal and social conduct and religious experience. We have also to take into consideration what social ideas have reference to the socio-religious philosophy of the traditionalists on the one hand and to the industrialists on the other.
I for myself can speak of the Hindu community in particular. The type of life that men have lived through the centuries has been multi-sided, according to the
religious sentiment that had throughout dominated all aspects of human behaviour-cultural and creative as well as practical and political. It had been keeping the members of the community together. Whether it was Vaishnava or Saiva (or even Buddhist and Jaina in the earlier period) we have had great religious tradition. The composite nature of this tradition also has to be admitted, as it tried to imbibe the best of the Vedic (Nigama) and the Agama. Through its genius for synthesis it had made for the collaboration of the two Vedantas: though this is specifically the name of the system of Ramanuja, this term (ubhaya vedanta) could in some measure be extended to denote all the systems of South India, for they doubtless claim accord between the northern Sanskritic tradition and the Southern Tamil tradition. The social tradition has been despite the difference between the Vedic (politico-social) organic conception of the four-castes and the one-class of spiritual society of the Alvars and Nayanmars, to live a corporate life of unity and functional difference. It led to the sharing of the moral and spiritual and material goods of the world. This however cannot survive without a constant and
continuous awareness of the spiritual tradition on the part or the large part of the community. The kind of life was a theocentric or temple centered one. Industries and fine arts were yoked to the spiritual ideal, contemplation of perfection of divine attributes and so on. The goal was salvation through devotion. The mass of the members of all communities lived this kind of life. The otherworldly bias alleged is not quite the fact against which the present day recoil is seen. This world was sought to be enjoyed as part of the Divine plan, but that meant disinterestedness in the performance of duties rather than indifference to them. The present day recoil cannot be explained on the neat pattern of criticism to which we are accustomed, that it is a recoil from the otherworldly and pessimistic view of life of tradition so far imbibed by all.
The Vaishnava and Saiva are them most important religious approaches and the majority of the community in South India are worshippers of both. The earlier tradition of exclusive devotion (ekanta-bhakti) has undergone changes during the recent period of impact from modern mystics, a more original and earlier
tradition of the Veda having replaced the sectarian or puranic dualism or trinitarianism.
The moral and ethical tradition is common to all the communities, and in fact the need to live a life of Godliness has meant a life of inner purity and tolerance and love for all. Ahimsa has greater appeal to the Southern Tradition, for south India had fewer occasions for resorting to fighting in self-defense of hearths and homes and gods. There have unfortunately been internecine warfares. But the great Tradition of the Alvars and Nayanmars (South Indian Tamilian Mystics) as well as the philosophies of Sankara, Ramanuja, Madhva and the Samayacharyas with their illustrious continuous stream of disciples (Guruparampara-sampradaya) made the practice of ahimsa and satya very necessary and habitual. Wherefore the south Indian tradition is less violent in temperament. It was easier for it to restore periodically ancient religious and spiritual tradition through tolerance and understanding and assimilation, which are today recognized as the most genuine principles of Hinduism.
We have to reckon with this important fact that the traditional spirit of Religion has again and again returned to restore the permanent qualities of south Indian tradition. The more violent and pragmatic adaptations of north Indian religious schools are not available in south India. The way of life went unchanged through ages, at least less drastic have been the changes. There has also been a great stabilizing force in the combination of philosophic adaptation and religious experiences from the intellectual groups who had the initiative and the power to command reverence. Whilst the northern Indian tradition remains a shapeless unity and is more and more becoming a sentimental and emotional unity, the southern Indian tradition has a shape and intellectual pattern to sustain its unity.
The brahmanic tradition in the south is an integral tradition, and has with the help of the upper groups served to maintain this cohesion and permanence in the face of the severe environmental changes, political and social and economic. There is resistance to change, on the one hand but there is also the awareness of the inevitable character of the change
to come. There is however a psychological struggle in the mind of the tradition governed communities. It is likely to become more and more acute as the demand for adaptation or uprooting from tradition becomes urgent and inevitable.
There is no question of an unchanging tradition now. In every sector of life there have happened changes thanks to the slow but unbroken penetration of other modes of life; or at least the educational and social changes incident to foreign rule have had a large part to play.
A reaction against this encroachment of western modes of life has grown in volume. The reaction is witnessable in growing urban communities in cities where the uprooted of partially uprooted educated men live and have their being. Here tradition is revolting against its absorption in modern social modes through recourse to Kalaksepa etc. Adaptation has, however, come to stay. It may be quite difficult to reverse this trend. The civilization of hotels and culture through films has displaced the civilization of hotels and culture through films has displaced the civilization of asramas
and culture of the gurukulas. Family arrangements have broken, thanks to the diffusion of the present employment possibilities. Ties of the joint family life are slowly untying. It has entailed even the giving up of family modes of traditional worship and living. Family members in different trades and professions have set up different modes of routine of life adapted to their professions. Religion at home has ceased to be a force, as the ideals of life of the parent or his own hopes of professional career for his children have changed.
The old agraharam civilization has collapsed not directly due to the growth of any industry (for such industries have come only after the village economy has collapsed) but because country life does not present any attractions and the city does. The urbanization of the people has also led to the breakup of and breakaway from the traditional modes of employment. Everybody is looking forward to state employment and is indeed being encouraged to look to it. Enquiries in all walks of life reveal this significant fact. This tendency started almost with the incoming of the empire builders. Office allurements on the one hand and failures of their hereditary professions at home on
the other, had driven all to the town for clerical and other trades.
The growth of industry is the second point. It has attracted young men to the several lines of engineering and they have found it advantageous in the monetary sense. Humanities have hardly this temptation or attraction. There is no money in it. But the cultural background has along with this abandonment of the ancient traditional vocations by those who were following it, led to the depletion of traditional knowledge. There has been failure of religious cohesion and unity, for education too was very early divorced or severed from religion and religious ideals. Thus the Western impact through industry and culture has made for a reversal from traditional standards and aims of life. This failure of religious tradition in respect of vocation and profits of profession has brought about the present crisis.
The condition of traditionalists has only to be looked into. Pundits have almost ceased to have spiritual and social influence on the community. The purohita instead of being a leader has become a
follower. The opportunities way of life has replaced the sampradaya modes of life, and learning. The apathy of the large mass of men to things spiritual has grown thanks to the caricatures on the stage and film and text books (so called socials) on the one hand, and on the other to the educated uninformed secularists. But behind this surface apathy there is a lurking sense of need of religion and spiritual solace in almost every serious student of life. There is a sense of loss of one’s moorings and one feels as if one is adrift. This can be seen in the increasing interest in unorganized and pseudo religious literature displayed by all kinds of people. This interest has to be canalized. How that can be done without the help of pundits of tradition has yet to be determined. There is hope that we could secure some of the eminent of these to help this revival of reverence for real spiritual aims of the modern society, however much it might have suffered disintegration or industrial adaptation.
Om Tat Sat