Faith

Divine incarnations

When the Supreme Being incarnates time and again to establish order in the world, protect the good and destroy evil, the celestial beings also take a human form to assist, pointed out Sri B. Sundarkumar in a discourse. Adi Sankara is believed to be an incarnation of Siva whose role was to rejuvenate the philosophical and spiritual life of the people. It was a time when the prevailing belief was that there was no Supreme Being controlling the universe and creation and that it was not necessary for people to engage in Veda karmas. Udayana, a great scholar and philosopher, established the presence of a Supreme God with his arguments and set the controversy at rest.

It is said that Muruga and Brahma incarnated as Kumarila Bhatta and Mandana Misra respectively to refute the view regarding performance of Veda karmas and to establish their importance. It was left to Adi Sankara to institute the path of a via media. He showed that karma is as much important as God-experience in the life of every being. Saraswati’s birth was occasioned by the curse of Sage Durvasa, who was angry when she smiled at his out of tune recital of the Sama Veda. She immediately repented and sought a way out of this curse. The sage decreed that she would be redeemed when she meets Siva, her brother, who would have taken a human form as a sanyasi.

Saraswati is born as Bharati, wife of Mandana Misra. She is involved with the debates between her husband and Adi Sankara on the issue of Veda karmas.

When Adi Sankara emerges the winner, Saraswati’s life on earth comes to an end and she is ready to get back to Satyaloka.

Adi Sankara requests her to stay as Sarada in Sringeri and bless humanity.

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2021 4:50:20 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/friday-review/religion/Divine-incarnations/article16074911.ece

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