Saraswati Publications, LLC
Saraswati Publications, LLC
January 3, 2013
Dear Friends,
The horrible events in Oregon and Connecticut within a single week, then more shootings afterward, brought terrible grief to so many.  It also brought people to ask the usual questions. Both made me want to share some thoughts with you.  I wrote this email in December but did not send it out then, as I thought it was not the best to send during the holiday season.
Everything Is Karma

People in America, especially the mass media, always ask: Why did this happen?  Why me?  Why did God do this to me/my child? 

In Eastern religions, there is a different point of view and fewer questions are asked.

It was very amazing to hear the father of Emilie Parker say that he was not angry and sending his condolences to all involved, including the Lanza family.  Like the Amish after the shooting deaths in their school a few years ago, who knew that healing lies in forgiveness, he wants to go on with his happy memories of Emilie, who he remembers as a very loving and compassionate soul. The father of  Jessie Lewis later said very similar things about what his son meant to him and how he will remember him and hopes others remember him.  They are not wasting their energies on anger towards the shooter but saving it to give their love to the rest of their families and others. 

Such a tragedy brings the opportunity for us to participate in a great outpouring of compassion and prayers for all involved.  We can make a real difference with evoking the great compassion of Kuan Yin and adding the positive energy of our prayers for healing.

We don't know the Gurus and Masters' Plan affecting these events.  We do know that all is karma.  Those beautiful children that died had completed the karma in their short lives, as had the adults who died. The shooters made a very bad choice, for whatever reason, and will have terrible karma to work out.

Detachment/Vairagya Is The Way To Happiness

In Chapter 3 of the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna says, "The unenlightened do things with attachment (wanting some results for themselves.)  An enlightened person does things with the same zeal, Arjuna, but without attachment, and thus guides others on the path of selfless action (Karma Yoga) [Translation by Sri Swami Satchidananda in The Living Gita.]

Our lives are the outworking of the Divine energy/Brahman, which is all Love.  When we feel separated from that Divine energy, we suffer.  We get attached to our own ego, to each other, and to material things.  We create actions and re-actions that make our lives more difficult both now and in future lives.  The Buddha said that it is our cravings that create our suffering and that to achieve happiness, we must reduce the cravings/attachments. 

In order to be in the world but not of the world, we must develop vairagya, detachment.  This is the state of being aware and even involved in events but not emotionally caught up in them.  Not so easy, of course, but the more I develop in that direction, the more I find that I have inner peace no matter what happens.

It is always hard on us when our loved ones pass on, but we know they have moved on to the care of their angels and guides.  They will rest, go to school between lives, and eventually reincarnate one place or another.  We may reincarnate with them again in the future.  The hard part is that we miss seeing them, having time with them.  My mother died at 40, when I was 16.  I learned young that the souls come and go on their own plan, in their own time.  What they choose to do has nothing whatsoever to do with us.  Later, my sister, who also had chosen a shorter life, passed just before age 50.  Namadeva Acharya's passing was on his own timetable, no doubt preplanned before incarnating.  I miss them all but am at peace with their passing.

One has to remind oneself to be attached to Divine Mother, Divine Father and not so much to other humans.  Still, we can love others with our whole heart.  It is the dependency on them for our happiness that we need to detach from.
The Yoga Of The Supreme Self

In the Shraddah, the service for the dead performed 10 days after the death, the 15th Chapter of the Bhagavad Gita, The Yoga of the Supreme Self, is chanted to remind us of Krishna's teaching that we have all come from the Divine Purusha/Oversoul and return to it after each life. 

Krishna describes the Divine energy in everything from the sunlight and moonlight to the sustaining of all living beings.  He says that there are two aspects of the Purusha, that which is subject to change and that which never changes.  All created beings are of the perishable aspect of Purusha, but the essence of every creature is the imperishable Purusha.  There is yet a supreme Purusha, the highest Self, infinite and eternal, who pervades and sustains the three worlds.  It is that imperishable part of everyone, the Atman or Soul, that passes out of the body, having grown in experience, and returns to the Divine realm at death.

Here is the translation of a few verses.  To read the whole chapter in transliteration and translation, click on the link at the bottom of the verses.

Wherefore having gone, no one returns again.

            I seek refuge in that Transcendental Purusha

            From whence came forth the ancient cause of all.


            That goal should be sought, devoid of pride and delusion

            Victorious over attachment, dwelling in the Self with desires disappeared,

            Freed from the dual pair of pain and pleasure.

Those who are free of delusion reach the goal [Enlightenment.]


            Where the sun shines not, neither the moon nor stars,

            Those who go there do not return. That is My Supreme Abode [Brahman.]



Here is a link to the 15th Chapter of the Bhagavad Gita.
I send you all my blessings and my prayers for your health, prosperity and spiritual growth.

Satyabhama/Margalo Ashley-Farrand
Saraswati Publications, LLC