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This book is delightful reading for anyone interested in spirituality and the deeper meanings ofreligion. A master of word imagery, Swami Kriyananda brings order to the seeming chaos ofsymbols and deities in Hinduism. This book reveals the underlying teachings from which thesymbols arise, the truths inherent in all religions, and their essential purpose the direct innerexperience of God. Divided into two sections of ten chapters each, the author leads the reader toclarity as can be done only by someone who has ...
This book is delightful reading for anyone interested in spirituality and the deeper meanings ofreligion. A master of word imagery, Swami Kriyananda brings order to the seeming chaos ofsymbols and deities in Hinduism. This book reveals the underlying teachings from which thesymbols arise, the truths inherent in all religions, and their essential purpose the direct innerexperience of God. Divided into two sections of ten chapters each, the author leads the reader toclarity as can be done only by someone who has achieved that clarity himself.
|Part 1||The Revelation|
|1.||What Is Revelation?||17|
|2.||What Are Symbols?||28|
|3.||The Power of Symbolism||37|
|4.||Symbolism in India||43|
|5.||Dating It All||50|
|6.||Symbolism: Truth, or Imagination?||69|
|7.||Philosophy, Religion, Science, or--What?||79|
|8.||The Hindu Revelation--Part One||91|
|9.||The Hindu Revelation--Part Two||109|
|Part 2||The Symbols|
|11.||Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva: The Trinity of AUM||153|
|12.||The Symbolism of Brahma||169|
|14.||The Garden Door||195|
|15.||The Importance of Satsanga (Good Company)||213|
|16.||The Avatara: Revelation, or Return Voyage?||233|
|17.||The Avatara and Human Evolution||245|
|18.||Symbolism in the Bhagavad Gita||272|
|19.||Tantra--the Way of Confrontation||294|
|20.||The Divine Mother||312|
|21.||Unity in Diversity||331|
Revelation is a sudden and complete knowing-usually of some spiritual truth, though, not always so. The certainty that revelation suggests comes not from any process of reasoning, but as a direct inspiration from the superconscious, or, more exactly, in a state of superconsciousness.
Revelation may also be less purely spiritual in nature. Composers, for example, have spoken of receiving their inspiration from higher realms: from God, as some of them have put it. Scientists, too, have sometimes had a sudden glimpses into the nature of material reality for which they could not account in rational terms. The Physicist Albert Einstein stated that the Law of Relativity came to him in a flash. After that experience, he labored for ten years to present it understandably to his fellow scientists.
Mahatma Gandhi's uncanny knowledge of just the right tactics to follow in the crises he faced during his struggle to free India from English rule cannot have been due to political astuteness alone. His decisions were more than intelligent: They were intuitive; as such, they were, at least to some degree, born of revelation.
Paramhansa Yogananda, a born leader of men, was approached in Calcutta when he was young by persons who wanted him to lead a revolution against the British. Demurring, he replied, "India will be freed during my lifetime, by peaceful means." His inner certainty in this prediction may also be classed as a kind of revelation.
Any flash of certainty that enters the mind with sudden clarity, and that is neither clouded by imagination nor merely formulated as a reasonable hypothesis, is, in its own way, a revelation.
Revelations must be in some way verifiable. That is they must be able to withstand the test of objective reality. If they really are soul-intuitions, they will be superconscious and as such will belong to a higher, not a lower (such as subconscious), level of reality. The products of fantasy or of wishful thinking have a different quality. They might be described as tentative. Revelation doesn't merely "make sense." The deep inner certainty it conveys is absolute. It comes not as a "conclusion" to some process of thinking or reasoning, but fully developed, like the goddess Athena from the brow of Zeus.
There are, as I have said, many levels of intuitive insight. By intuition one may gain access even to trivial knowledge-solutions, for example, to every-day problems. Normally, however, revelation refers to the highest order of intuition, and concerns especially the soul's relationship to the Absolute. Indeed, the more clearly a superconscious inspiration reveals the Divine Will, the more it deserves to be classed as a revelation.
An important feature of revelation is that it is always personal; it is not public. A genuine revelation may be declared in scripture and accepted as the truth by millions, but what those millions understand of it is not their revelation. It is only what they have read about someone else's experience. Scripture itself can only echo revealed truth.
Words are but symbols. They do not present: They represent. Even when multitudes receive a revelation directly, as has in fact happened occasionally, it remains personal for each member of the crowd. If an entire nation were born blind, then suddenly given the gift of sight, the experience would be personal for each citizen. Sensory in nature, the thrill would of course diminish in time as novelties always do, but even accepting that this experience was a "revelation" of a sort to each of them, it would still be personal, and would depend on each person's ability to see.
Einstein's intuitive recognition of the Law of Relativity was a revelation in a more valid sense of the word, for it was (indeed, it could only have been) inspired by the superconscious. For us, the beneficiaries of his discovery, his revelation is not our own. Nor does it extend to those few scientists who have been able to understand it intellectually. It is a revelation only for that rare person, if such a one exists, who has been uplifted in awareness to the same degree as Einstein was during his moment of discovery.
Revelation is not static. It brings an outwardly expanding awareness, which bestows more and ever deeper insights. Einstein, after that first revelation, continued throughout his life to receive further, often amazing, insights into cosmic reality. It wasn't intellect alone that brought him those perceptions: It was the fact that he had, even if only once, touched the hem of Infinity. As he was to write many years later, the essence of scientific discovery is a sense of mystical awe before the wonders of the universe.
Meanwhile, others have been left with the mere effects of his revelation. Indeed, all he could give them was, in a sense, its symbols. The revelation was his alone.
Revelation is wisdom as distinct from intellectual knowledge. The intellect analyzes and separates, then painstakingly reassembles the parts in the hope of making them fit together again. The intellect is like a child who, after taking apart a watch, tries to put the pieces back again as they were. The intellect, though gifted at analysis, lacks the understanding necessary for anything more thereafter than synthesis. But revelation transcends reason; it perceives the essential truth of a thing in its entirety, and in a flash.
St. Teresa of Avila, in Spain, wrote, "The soul in its ecstatic state grasps in an instant more truth than can be arrived at by months, or even years, of painstaking thought and study."
Superconscious revelation perceives an underlying unity, whereas the intellect perceives only diversity. Superconscious revelation may come in an instant, whereas the intellect must plod slowly over muddy fields, its boots gathering heavy clods of definitions. Superconsciousness is solution-oriented; ordinary consciousness is problem-oriented. Theology, for example, reaches learned conclusions by careful deliberation, sometimes by heated debate, and always by a process of laborious intellectual refinement.
Posted September 19, 2008
This is an amazing book,this book takes you back in time to the religion of Santana Dharma (eternal religion), the first religion from which hinduism was derived from, it makes numerous reference to the bible & hinduism (symbolizing that all religions are one, all religions speak of the same things, even muslim, which is to reach a higher level of consciousness, remove karma & eventually be one with the Self, which is eventually the goal of every human being & if you haven't figured this out in this lifetime you will eventually in the next & the next hence forth reincarnation... decending from the age of Kali Yuga (age of materialism & ego) we are now entering the age of Dwarapa Yuga (age of energy), therefore in order to remove karma, detach oneself from the ego & receive divine wisdom from the source one has to practice a certain yoga (which was then kept a secret in India) to awaken the 8 chakras in the human body & release kundalini energy... ( ----the bible even speaks of this)..... This book has open new doors in my life...Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.