Jerry S. on BAG's latest posting about MAHA VISHNU, GARBODAKSAYI VISHNU & BRAHMA
Jan 05, 2003 06:38 AM
by Daniel H. Caldwell " <email@example.com>
Jerry S. kindly provided the following comments on what BAG has
recently written on MAHA VISHNU, GARBODAKSAYI VISHNU AND BRAHMA. Be
sure to see also Jerry's P.S. at the end of his posting.
The following comments are provided at the request of Daniel.
However, I find myself unable to criticize BAG very much, except
perhaps that he does not seem to understand the difference between
exoteric Theosophy and esotericTheosophy. But then, few do.
<<<MAHA VISHNU IN NOT WITHIN ANY MATERIAL UNIVERSE. HE IS IN THE
MAHATATTVA PORTION OF THE SPIRITUAL SKY, AND THE INFINITE NUMBER OF
FINITE MATERIAL UNIVERSES (LIKE OUR OWN) ARE MANIFEST LIKE BUBBLES
OUT OF THE 'PORES' OF HIS BODY. THESE ARE EMPTY UNTIL HE GLANCES ON
THEM. HIS GLANCE IS CALLED SHAMBHU, AND THROUGH THIS LOVING GLANCE,
HE MANIFESTS ALL OF THE FINITE JIVA-SOULS WITHIN EACH FINITE
UNIVERSE. MAHA VISHNU THEN ENTERS INTO EACH UNIVERSE AS
GARBODAKSAYI VISHNU, THE SELF-SACRIFICED COSMIC PURUSHA AND THE
PARAMATMA 'HOLY SPIRIT', LORD OF ALL HEARTS. HE ALSO MANIFESTS
HIMSELF AS THE GUNA AVATARAS BRAHMA, VISHNU AND SHIVA, AND AS
INFINITE DIRECT LILA INCARNATIONS AND 'EMPOWERED' SHAKTYAVESHA
Blavatsky would like this paragraph. It is a Hindu/Vedanta depiction
of divinity self-expressing into manifold universes. From a Buddhist
view, I don't care for all of the personified reifications. But even
Buddhism agrees with self-manifestation via Vajradhara to Vajrasattva
and etc. "Lila incarnations" probably refers to the mayavic aspect of
all creation while "Shaktyavesha incarnations" probably refers to the
karmic aspect of all creation. Every manvantaric manifestation
includes maya and karma at the outset.
<<<VISHNU IS ALSO CALLED HARI, PURUSHA, VASUDEVA, NARAYANA AND MORE
THAN 1000 OTHER NAMES IN SANSKRIT. THE MANY BY-NAMES OF THE BIBLICAL
DEITY ELI-YAHU-ADON, THE EGYPTIAN SUPREME GODHEAD HERU-ASU(OSIRIS)-
ATUM, THE GREEK HELI-OS-AUTOS (ONTOS. ATOMOS), AND JUPITER, ZEUS,
AMMON POLIEUS ARE NAMES OF PURUSHA. >>>
There are many Egyptian "supreme godheads" but I am not familiar with
this one, apparently a combination of Horus, Osiris, and Tem. Anyway,
we humans do, in fact, tend to give out a lot of names for the same
<<<THE DOCTRINE OF BRAHMA ON THE COSMIC LOTUS FROM THE BODY OF
GARBODAKSAYI VISHNU IS RELATED TO THE HELIOPOLITAN TRADITION OF THE
COSMIC AXIS MUNDI AT DELPHI (GARBHA = DELPHA), AND THE DOCTRINE OF
HELIOS-PHANES, OR THEOPHANY IN EGYPT, WHERE THE 4 ARMED AND 4 FACED
FORM OF HERU APPEARED AT THE DAWN OF THE COSMIC CREATION ON A LOTUS
FROM THE BODY OF NILUS OR MZRYM / NAHARAIM / NARAYANA. >>>
OK. Of course the Egyptian axis mundi was the Nile, shaped somewhat
like a lotus. I believe that they also accepted a spiritual or cosmic
Nile, the physical Nile being its material reflection.
<<<VISHNU WITH 'BUBBLE' UNIVERSES IS MAHA VISHNU OUTSIDE OF ALL
MATERIAL UNIVERSES, AND VISHNU WITH THE LOTUS-NAVEL AND BRAHMA IS
WITHIN EACH 'IMPREGNATED' FINITE COSMIC GLOBE / 'EGG'. >>>
Blavatsky refers to creative forces "outside all material universes"
as Parabrahman, and "within each" universe as Brahma.
<<<THE THEOSOPHICAL SYSTEM DOES NOT SEEM TO CONCERN ITSELF WITH THE
TRANSCENDENT REALM AND GODHEAD, OR THE EXISTANCE OF OTHER UNIVERSES
OUTSIDE OF OUR OWN. IT SEEMS TO TAKE THE DAYS AND NIGHTS OF BRAHMA AS
AN ULTIMATE AND ENDLESS CYCLE. >>>
I would agree that this is largely true for what I have called
exoteric Theosophy. It is not so for esoteric Theosophy. Probably 99%
of Blavatsky's writings, for example, address what appears to us to
be going on within our own manvantara. But she does acknowledge other
universes, and also trancendent realms which she collectively refers
to as Beness outside of our universe and as the "invisible worlds"
within it. She says little about Beness or what she calls the
Absolute (a term which I do not like because she uses it as a blind)
probably because she felt that the public of her day was not ready to
<<<THIS IS BASICALLY THE JAIN. THERAVADIN BUDDHIST, AND ADVAITI VIEW,
THAT ENDLESS CYCLING IN THIS UNIVERSE IS ALL THAT THERE IS.>>>
Again, I agree largely with this, in that the TSs emphasize it so
much that we forget a more esoteric interpretation is available. And
I have pointed out in many of my past posts that Dallas and others
keep saying in Theosophical terms exactly what is taught in
Hinayana/Theravadin Buddhism but not in Mahayana Buddhism.
Theosophists seem basically content to spend eternity in mindless
mayavic incarnations. Well, this is not for me, and I can't find the
need to do this in esoteric Theosophy anywhere. Exoteric Theosophy
misses the ball by dismissing the doctrine of liberation, one of
Buddha's four noble truths.
<<<THE BRAHMAN LIGHT (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH BRAHMA) PERVADES BOTH
THIS AND THE SPIRITUAL SKY. MERGING INTO THE BRAHMAN EFFUGENCE OF THE
GODHEAD IS NOT DESIRED BY ANYONE EXCEPT THE BRAHMAVADIS WHO ARE
DEVOTEES, AND THE MAYAVADIS WHO ARE ATHEISTS. THE BRAHMAVADIS
EXPERIENCE A 'MERGING' RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD WHILE IN CONCIOUSNESS
CONTACT WITH HIS BRAHMAN EFFULGENCE, BUT THE MAYAVADIS
HAVE ONLY A COMPLETELY IMPERSONAL EXPERIENCE. BA G>>>
The difference between the Brahmavadis and Mayavadis is night and
day; the former rests on the upper cosmic planes while the latter
rests on the fourth. The former has clarity and bliss while the
latter has nothing at all except perhaps peace.
PS. Those Theosophists who dislike BAG's criticism of Theosophy have
to remember that he seems to be primarily attacking exoteric
Theosophy as promoted in the TSs and as found in literal
interpretations of the original writings. An esoteric or "higher"
interpretation of those original writings is also available, and to
which his criticisms do not apply. Blavatsky throws out hints of this
esoteric tradition throughout her exoteric writings but one must
be able to see it through all of her blinds.
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