Hindu Dharma – Has it come through Manu or Trimurti
Professor (Dr) K. Gopinathan Pillai
About 30 years back Santhigiri Publications brought out a booklet authored by Navajyothisree Karunakara Guru titled 'Hindu Dharma, has it come through Manu or Trimurti?‘ (Haindava Dharmam-Manuvilkudiyo Trimurtikalil Kudiyo’).
By this question Guru wanted to draw the attention of the people of this country to the basic causations of poverty, social disintegration and cultural degeneration of this great land and civilization despite her unique spiritual legacy. Even today an average Hindu is incapable to answer the question posed by the Guru. In the heterogeneous and complex character of Hinduism, truth is veiled by untruth, myth and legends eclipse reality and distortions are legitimized.
Therefore, an ordinary Hindu lives in the midst of religious ritualism and spiritual ignorance unable to discriminate between Sanatana Dharma and Trimurty system. This incapacitated them to recognize and accept divine masters like Sree Krishna, Sree Buddha, Mahavir, Gurunanak and others who took birth to guide them to the right path. Guru’s revelation that the unabated sufferings and sorrows of humanity, despite the sacrifice of great souls, have resulted from the deviation in Yuga Dharma and distorted forms of worship, is an eye-opener to all God believing people. A proper understanding of Guru’s revelation is possible only when one understands Sanatana Dharma, its eclipse due to a spiritual error in the past and the advent of Trimurty system and the resultant degradation in karma and dharma leading to astral pollution, human sufferings and miseries of all sorts.
If we are to evaluate the worth of India, it becomes necessary to understand the purpose of Manusmriti - the perennial law of Manu which constitutes the basis of Sanatana Dharma, Navajyothisree Karunakara Guru said. But the name of the first Guru, Manu, and the dharma he gifted to humanity and the truth that Manu Dharma is the basis of Sanatana Dharma have all vanished from human memory and never taught. Interestingly Manu, the first Law Giver is characterized as the most reactionary and conservative whose laws were responsible for the rise of caste system and denial of liberty, especially to women. The basic reasons that contributed to the demise of Sanatana Dharma were first revealed by Navajyothisree Karunakara Guru. Guru pointed out that a small book that is circulated today as Manu Smriti is a distorted version of the original Manu Smriti, which was long lost and has nothing to do with the present one.
Manu was a fully realized Guru through whom the Supreme or Brahman revealed to humanity the divine design of cosmic time, dharma and evolutionary process in the nature. That is why Sanatana Dharma is also called as Manu Dharma. It encompassed the principles to be followed in each and every aspect of spiritual and material pursuit of human life. Those principles were considered eternal because they were given by Trikala Jnanis or realized Guru’s who could discern in spiritual vision the cause-effect relationship of all material and metaphysical phenomena.
The time scale given by Manu Smriti and the concept of Yuga Dharma forms the basis of Manu Dharma or Sanatana Dharma. According to this, the creation, existence and dissolution of the world occur in a time span of one Kalpa. One Kalpa is composed of 14 Manwantaras and one Manwantara consists of 72 Chaturyugas and one Chaturyuga consists of four Yugas, namely, Krita (Satya), Treta, Dwapara and Kali. An important fact to be noticed is that each Yuga has its own karma, dharma and worship system. In each Yuga great seers or Kalantara Gurus would take birth to impart to humanity the dharma and karma of each age. It is in this context an observation of Navajyothisree Karunakara Guru holds significance. Guru pointed out that the greatest mistake occurred to Hindu society is that it still follows the Yuga Dharma of Treta and Dwapara in the present Kali Yuga which has caused the loss of material as well as spiritual progress.
Upanishads exemplifies the depth and the intuitive power of Jnanis in unraveling cosmic laws and astral secrets that influence spiritual and material realms of human life. Rishis lived in the midst of people teaching them how to live properly. In the Jnana Marga there was no distinction based on caste, religion or any such man made inequalities. At a particular point of time Sanatana Dharma was weakened and slowly got eclipsed and sidelined. Thereafter the previous messengers of God could not fulfill their mission of guiding humanity in consonance with Yuga Dharma. It was the time of the advent of Trimurty system in Indian history. Guru has rightly said that we have deviated from the principles of Sanatana Dharma and observe customs, rituals and worship contrary to it.
With the decadence of Sanatana Dharma, the Trimurty system gradually emerged. The most important shortcoming of this system was the absence of jnana path. Many aspects of Sanatana Dharma were incorporated into Trimurty system. While the time scale of Manu was accepted in the Trimurty system, the Jnana Margam of Sanatana Dharma was discarded. The ennobled concept of God or the Supreme Light in Indian spirituality is Brahman which the Vedas and Upanishads characterize as the only Truth. The exponents of Trimurty system covered the truths of Sanatana Dharma with mythical stories and interpolations. They characterized Vishnu, Maheswara and Brahma as the ultimate gods to be worshipped and all worship and spiritual practices were dedicated to Trimurties. Evolution of the soul to the Ultimate Truth was thus blocked as the Trimurties were recognized as the Ultimate. The decay of Indian society and social disintegration start from this point of time.
Manipulating and twisting the concept of Varnashrama Dharma, the priestly class in the Trimurty tradition created caste system. Varnashrama Dharma was based on the eternal law of the inherent quality of one’s jeeva, i.e., an individuals worth is determined on the basis of the dominant ‘colour’ of his soul. Thus the degree of brightness (punya) of one’s Jeeva, decides whether one is a Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaisya or Sudra. Thus Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Sudra are born to parents in each family. This natural law was misinterpreted to suit the interests of the priestly class with the sidelining of Sanatana Dharma. The Caste system was legitimized by interpolations in scriptures. Majority of the people were included in the Sudra caste and the jobs that were allotted to them were also considered lower ones. Hard and fast rules were prescribed for each caste and vast majority of the Sudras were denied access to knowledge. The cruelest thing done to the Sudras was that they were denied the worship of the Trimurty and other deities that the higher castes worshipped. They were given evil spirits for worship or deities with ‘tamasic’ qualities. Thus majority of the Hindus had lost the opportunity for intellectual and spiritual pursuit and became ignorant and Sudra in the real sense.
Navajyothisree Karunakara Guru’s life is marked by incidents, events and developments of unprecedented character. Guru passed through uncertainties at each phase of his life. It was only at the time of His spiritual fulfillment in 1973, the mission of Guru was revealed from the Supreme that He was brought up by Brahman to shed light into unanswered and unresolved puzzles in spiritually. It was revealed on the occasion of Guru’s spiritual fulfillment that the mission of Guru is the restoration of Yuga Dharma and thus fulfilling the unfinished mission of previous messengers of God to guide humanity to the Truth.
It was revealed further that the past preceptors could not transform human nature and nourish virtues by eradicating the inherent bad instincts in soul because of the deviation in Yuga Dharma and the resultant practice of dharma and karma contrary to it. The previous seers despite their sacrifice could not get revealed this deviation in Yuga Dharma and how it occurred. That is why in spite of the best efforts of great Rishis, Gurus and Prophets and religions founded in their names, cruelty, violence, disquiet and scientific inventions that destroy the nature continue.
(The Author is Professor in Political Science, Govt. Arts College, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala)