Faith

Worship of Brahman

In the Katopanishad, Yama describes in detail the worship of the Supreme Brahman through fire sacrifice and explains its procedure.

The sacred ‘agni’ for the yagna is produced by rubbing two ‘Arani’ fire sticks. Agni, the all-knower, hidden in the fire-sticks, is evoked thus and then carefully preserved and kept alive and on no account is this fire to be shut out. Ghee and other oblations keep the fire alive.

Those who perform this fire sacrifice are the karma yogis and by this practice it is stated that they gain access to heaven since it is believed that the dwellers in heaven are free of hunger, fear or old age and they gain immortality.

Yama uses the analogy of the fire that remains hidden between the ‘Arani’ fire sticks to illustrate the subtle presence of the Paramatma who remains hidden in oneself, pointed out Swami Suprajnananda in a discourse.

Worship of the Supreme Brahman is necessary if one is to know and realise Him. If yagas and yagnas are one form of worship of the Brahman, there is yet another form of worship practised by those who are engaged in meditation.

These dhyana yogis wish to realise through self-contemplation the primal God who is difficult to be seen and remains deeply hidden in the cave of the heart. They are keen to keep alive this awareness of the Paramatma at all times and hence always are engaged in meditation and contemplation of the Lord.

The verse goes on to explain that just as a mother takes care of the foetus in the womb, the karma yogis and dhyana yogis preserve the fire and the Brahman respectively through their constant care and worship. If one is able to see Him thus, one can realise Him.

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Printable version | Apr 17, 2021 11:14:22 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/friday-review/religion/worship-of-brahman/article6611956.ece

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