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  • Writer's pictureAshok Kumar Burra

'Nirvana Shatkam' explains better about 'Atman' – the eternal Soul

The greatness of Hinduism lies in the facts that first of all, it is not a religion but it is only an enduring culture which sustained many invasions, cultural attacks and yet thrives in India. Secondly, in the deeper sense, it offers various methods and practices for the humans so that one can follow his/her preferred method.

Hinduism has nothing to preach against other religions and it is only by the provoking acts of the other religions that today some Hindus are revolting against such attempts, which is again an undesirable thing happening in modern India.

And as the efficiency of the communication was never been 100% across the generations, we forgot the Supreme God’s uniqueness and began arguing among us as who is the greatest of the three – Brahma or Vishnu or Shiva? Of course, the much disputed issue is the comparison between Vishnu and Shiva.

Assuming 100% divine knowledge had existed in the beginning, some thousands of years ago, and considering 99% efficiency of communication for each generation, over ten generations we arrive at 90%. Probably since the beginning of our Vedic culture we have passed more than hundreds of generations and so now what we know today could only be 1% of the whole or even less. So there is no wonder that today we have misunderstood or misinterpreted our spiritual wisdom which originally was genuine.

However any wise and scholarly person who reads either ‘Vishnu Sahasranamam’ or ‘Shiva Sahasranamam’ will find that the meanings of about half or almost all of the names, described in these two apparently diverse literatures, are the same.

To get rid of all the stupidity we had acquired with our petty understanding of spirituality, let us read this ‘Nirvana Shatkam’ written by Sri Adi Sankaracharya – a great devotee of Lord Shiva, where he explains how ‘Atman’ is associated with the eternal being and not just linked to the physical body and how the finest understanding of Atman paves the way for better understanding of the Supreme God.

Chithananda Roopah Sivoham Sivoham! Chithananda Roopah Sivoham Sivoham! Chithananda Roopah Sivoham Sivoham!

And our wise ancestors have attributed the three main functions of the Supreme God namely Creation, Implementation and Destruction to Brahma, Vishnu and Maheswara respectively. But all of the three are no different and not separate from the same Supreme God.

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