HOLI message from Vishwaguruji
HOLI 6 March 2015
Message from Vishwaguruji
Paramhans Swami Maheshwarananda
The Holi festival signifies the victory of justice, and the devastation of all asuri shaktis (negative powers) in the universe.
There are two powers that run parallel, devik shakti and asuri shakti. Devik is positive, harmonious, balanced and protective, while asuri shakti is the complete opposite; it involves cruelty, crimes, fighting and destruction.
It's when this asuri shakti starts to dominate and begins to cause pain and fear in the hearts and minds of people, that the divine, devik shakti manifests in human form - this is known as an 'incarnation'. Such incarnations are Nimit Avatar, meaning a rare individual with huge capabilities to dispel evil and protect and liberate the devotees and good souls.
In the Bhagavad Gita, Bhagwan Krishna says, "Time to time I incarnate with my yoga shakti to support spiritual ethics and destroy the negative asuri shakti." A Nimit Avatar comes only once or twice in every yuga (time period); while a Nitya Avatara incarnates more often in the form of Holy Saints, and divine personalities that serve all life.
There is a story about Holi, which we remember at this time each year:
Hiranyakashyap was an Asura who wanted to achieve immortality; he stood for several ages on one leg and prayed to God to bless him. Finally, as per the law, God appeared in front of him and asked, "What is your wish?"
Hiranyakashyap replied, "Immortality."
God said, "It is not possible. There is a cosmic law that says who has come must go. No one who is in this mortal body can live forever."
Unsatisfied, Hiranyakashyap said, "Then I will stay here and continue my austerity until you bless me with immortality."
Well, God suggested he ask for something else, a clever way perhaps, to ensure his longevity.
So Hiranyakashyap said, "Not by weapons shall I be killed; nor by any illness. I should not be killed by any animal or human; neither inside nor outside; not in the day or night."
God blessed him and disappeared.
So with no fear of death, Hiranyakashyap became a violent dictator, and believed himself to be like God. He dominated the people, and tortured them so much that they were afraid to worship anyone other than him.
Well, much to Hiranyakashyap's disgrace, his own son Prahlad became a great devotee of Lord Vishnu, and would sing and praise the honor of God and divinity. He inspired all his school friends and others not to be afraid of his father, and to believe in God. It is said that in God's Kingdom there is never darkness, the time will come and it will bring the end of Hiranyakashyap.
Hiranyakashyap's own son became the cause of that end, but only after much suffering, trials and tribulations. Hiranyakashyap tried on several occasions to have Prahlad killed. He was taken to the deep forest where elephants roamed; had him thrown off cliffs; drowned; poisoned; and attempted by many other ways, but without any success. It's said that whom God wants to protect, no power in the universe can destroy.
One day Hiranyakashyap decided to kill the child himself and he prepared a huge iron pipe filled with burning coal. He told his son, "Either you stop believing in God or go and embrace this pillar."
Prahlad being a bhakta, thought, "It is better to die in the fire while loving God, than to live a meaningless existence with this rakshasa asuri shakti Hiranyakashyap."
As Prahlad approached the hot pillar, he knew he's walking towards his death, and at that moment the pillar split in two. Miraculously it became cool, and instead of coal, from it emerged a monstrous form: half lion, half human, known as Narsingh Avatar. He embraced Prahlad and said, "My son, don't worry, your troubles are over."
Hiranyakashyap knew this was bad. He ran towards the house and fell down midway through the door. That creature - half man, half animal - caught him and roared, "Look, where are you? Inside or outside? Is it day or night? Are you ill? Am I holding a weapon? Look to my hands, what do you see?"
It was just dusk, in the door way, and the lions claws couldn't be considered as weapons. Narsingh Avatar said, "I fulfilled my promise, and now your day has come."
For the sake of bhaktas, devotees and noble souls, even God has to change his principles and form to rescue sincere ones from all their troubles; God's is always there to protect and to liberate.
Unfortunately the story continues, Hiranyakashyap had a sister, and her name was Holika. She had the ability to sit in a fire without burning, and as the story goes, she took the young Prahlad on her lap and sat in the fire, believing that it would consume him, and not her. Instead she was burned and Prahlad remained untouched. That day was celebrated, and the glory of Prahlad reached far and wide. Upon hearing the news and victory everyone in their joy took coloured powder and threw it all over each other, bringing light, joy and happiness back into their lives.
In many cities of India they use a tree to symbolise Holika and place it in the centre of the town and set fire to it on this day. On the next day they throw colours. It is a reminder of how the demonic energy inevitably destroys itself and the divine energy is protected. Children dance and throw coloured powders and water, and the festivities last all week, with sweets, food, and much joy.
Sanatan Dharma is the dharma of joy, and finally victory will reign over the negative powers and sins.
These stories are significant, in that one should never misuse ones own powers and authority or abilities, for the sake of oneself. When ego awakens and powers are misused, it always leads to destruction. Whereas a humble soul bears insult and injury, and ultimately achieves success in the end, which is remembered, rewarded and celebrated.
With this I wish you a happy Holi; that you will make the decision to start the new year afresh with joy and colour; be free from fear and live with great happiness in your life, so you may share it with all.
With the blessings of Sri Alakpuriji Siddha Peetha Parampara
May Bhagwan Narsingh Avatara bless you.
Satguru Dev Ki Jay