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Avinash

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  1. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    I can say that you first need to explain the verses that glorify Rudra as supreme. You are explaining by saying that the word Rudra is used for Lord Vishnu in these verses. And the verses, which calls Rudra as sinful, refers to Lord Mahadev. I agree that the same word can have different meanings. But the context also must be different. If the word Rudra is used in two places in the same context, then it is quite logical to think that the meaning in the two places is the same. The verse of Shvetashavara upanishad, which calls Rudra as supreme and the verses, which call Rudra as "lord of the mountains" are in the same context. Therefore, if Rudra here refers to Lord Vishnu, it means that Lord Vishnu is referred to as "Lord of the mountains". But, it is known that Lord Mahadev is called as the Lord of the mountains, and mountain here is Kailash. Of course, it is quite possible to call Lord Vishnu also as Lord of the mountains. Being omnipresent, He exists everywhere including mountains. But, usually, the title "Lord of the mountains" refers to Lord Shankara.
  2. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    Buddha wanted to stop people from killing animals in the name of religion. Mohini wanted to give nectar to gods because, if demons has drunk it, then being of evil nature, they would have created havoc. You are saying that Vishnu does not want tamasic people to be cleansed of karmas. In other words, if somebody is tamasic, Vishnu wants him to remain tamsic. Does not sound like a good God. Even if it is believed, as you say that, tamasic Puranas were written for people like me, then you should be happy that I am giving importance to tamasic Puranas also (together with other Puranas). After all, the purpose of tamasic Puranas is getting served.
  3. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    Read my message again. I never said that you said Vishnu cannot be called as Rudra. I know you said that He can. To repeat what I wrote: - "You may claim that Lord Vishnu can be called as Rudra but, Lord Shiva i.e. Mahadev cannot be called as Vishnu according to Sanskrit grammar."
  4. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    Let me add that Shiva Purana lists 1008 names of Lord Shiva, in which the name "Vishnu" is included. You may argue that Shiva Purana is tamasic, and therefore, does not contain correct information. But here I am not talking about the correctness of information but about the usage of Sanskrit grammar. Take an analogy. Suppose that I make the following statement: - "I am a doctor." The above statement is a lie. But it uses English grammar correctly. But if you say that as per Sanskrit grammar, the title "Vishnu" cannot be used for Lord Shiva, then you are trying to say that Shiva Purana uses Sanskrit grammar incorrectly. I know you want to say that Ved Vyas has given incorrect statements in Shiva Purana. But, do you want to say that he has used Sanskrit grammar incorrectly in this Purana? As I explained above by giving an example, there is diffrence between a statement being factually incorrect and the statement being grammatically incorrect.
  5. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    The gods were talking to Shiva. They were referring to him in second person and calling him supreme. Vishnu was nearby. If they had to pray to Vishnu, they could have done that. It was Shiva and not Vishnu who drank the poison on the request of gods. In spite of this, if somebody claims that the gods were praying to Vishnu dwelling within Shiva, then it is too much of strech of imagination. The claim that gods went to Shiva because Shiva is their guru holds no water. Guru is needed to approach God. When God is nearby, then there is nothing wrong in talking to God. Yudhisthir worshipped Krsna. He did not call Dronacharya or Kripacharya as supreme thinking that people will know he was calling Vishnu inside Drona or Kripa as supreme. Yes, there should be reconciliation, but not by forcibly interpreting verses to support one's point of view. We can say that both Vishnu and Shiva are different aspects of supreme Brahman. You are saying that Shiva called Vishnu as greater. So, what? In Shiva Purana, Vishnu calls Shiva as greater. Do not say that Shiva Purana is tamasic and hence not pramana. What did Ved Vyas gain by intentionally writing wrong things? If you believe that he can on purpose lie and mislead people, then how can you have trust in other works of his? How can you be sure that what he has written in sattvik puranas is correct. If he can write so many lies in tamasic puranas, then he could write lies in sattvik puranas also. Talking about Shruti, it is clearly written in Shvetashvatara Upanishad that Shiva is supreme. Those who claim that Shiva is a jiva argue that this upanishad calls Vishnu by the name of Rudra. Again, too much of strech of imagination! Let us see some verses from the upanishad: - "3.2 For there is one Rudra only, they do not allow a second, who rules all the worlds by his powers. He stands behind all persons, and after having created all worlds he, the protector, rolls it up at the end of time." When a verse says that there was only Narayan, one without a second, then you say that there was Lord Vishnu, one without a second. You may claim that Lord Vishnu can be called as Rudra but, Lord Shiva i.e. Mahadev cannot be called as Vishnu according to Sanskrit grammar. But, let us see verse 3.11 of Shvetashvatara Upanishad: - "3.11. That Bhagavat exists in the faces, the heads, the necks of all, he dwells in the cave (of the heart) of all beings, he is all-pervading, therefore he is the omnipresent Shiva." This verse uses the words omnipresent Shiva. You may claim that the word Shiva here refers to Lord Vishnu. But, we know that the word Vishnu etymologically means omnipresent. This verse uses the term "omnipresent Shiva". This means that etymologically there is no contradiction between the words Vishnu (omnipesent) and Shiva. I agree that Lord Vishnu can be called as Shiva. But we know that Lord Mahadev is also called as Shiva. Since, the verse uses omnipresent (i.e. Vishnu) and Shiva together, there cannot be anything etymologically wrong if it is said that Lord Mahadev is omnipresent. If I say that Lord Shankar is omnipresent, then how does it violate any rule of Sanskrit grammar? Consider verses 3.5 and 3.6: - "5. O Rudra, thou dweller in the mountains, look upon us with that most blessed form of thine which is auspicious, not terrible, and reveals no evil!" "6. O lord of the mountains, make lucky that arrow which thou, a dweller in the mountains, holdest in thy hand to shoot. Do not hurt man or beast!" In these verses, Rudra is called as "dweller in the mountains" and "lord of the mountains". It is well known that Lord Shiva dwells in the mountains (Kailash). Of course, Lord Vishnu also dwells there being omnipresent. But Shvetavashtra Upanishad uses only those titles for Rudra, which are almost always used for Lord Shiva. But, still claiming that these titles are used for Lord Vishnu in the upanishad is forcibly proving one's point.
  6. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    You call Bhagavatam as pramana. In Bhagavatam, it is written that devas called lord Shiva as supreme. You interpret it to mean that Vishnu dwelling within Shiva is supreme. When asked why devas did not go directly to Vishnu, then you argue that one should go to guru. I agree that one should approach God through guru. But if God is in front of me, then there is nothing wrong in talking to God directly. Vishnu was standing nearby. The devas could have easily talked to Vishnu. In Rajasuya yajna, when Sahdev suggested that Krishna should be worshipped, then Yudhisthir worshipped Krishna. He did not call Dronacharya or Krpacharya as supreme. And who drank the poison? Did Lord Shiva or did Lord Vishnu dwelling within Lord Shiva drink the poison?
  7. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    I never considered newspapers and TV serials as pramana. As I wrote very clearly, even on seeing Shiva mentioned as supreme in magazines and TV serials, I continued to think Vishnu as supreme. However, I do give importance to Shiva Purana and other scriptures. Your argument is that Ved Vyas knew that what he was writing in tamasic Puranas was wrong and still he wrote it. And you say that it was for good purpose. According to you, on purpose telling lies and misleading people is for good purpose.
  8. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    Read my post again to which you gave the above reply. I used the word Brahman and not Mahadeva or Shiva. I agree with you that Shruti cannot contradict itself (unless of course, some part of Shruti is a later day interpolation). Therefore, I agree with you when you say that if two verses of Shruti seem to contradict each other, then we should interpret each other in such a way that they are consistent. Somewhere Shruti says that Vishnu is supreme and somewhere it says that Rudra is supreme. You are reconciling these by saying that Rudra is supreme means that Vishnu dwelling within Rudra is supreme. There is another way: - Both Rudra and Vishnu are manifestations of Brahman. Rudra is supreme means that Brahman is supreme and Vishnu is supreme also means that Brahman is supreme. Shruti glorifies different aspects of Brahman. I do not agree that as per Sanskrit grammar, Lord Shiva cannot be called as Vishnu. I am not disputing what Panini saied. Panini was a Sanskrit expert. But I disagree with Vaishnava Acharyas who say that Lord Shiva cannot be called as Vishnu according to Sanskrit grammar.
  9. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    I have been calling Vishnu as supreme since even before I had heard the words Vaishnava, Shaiva etc. When I was 8 year old (I was in 4th std. then), then people nearby used to ask me to tell story of Rama. I had very little knowledge of Ramayana at that time. I had not read complete Ramayana, but just some parts from here and there. But those people used to love hearing Ramayana from me (may be because I was a child. ) I was aware that Vishnu had taken the birth as Rama. I considered Vishnu as supreme. It continued even as I grew older. I was under impression that all Hindus consider Vishnu as supreme. I remember that a few times, some of my friends (of roughly same age as me) called Shiva as supreme. But I thought that the person saying so was misinformed. One day my father told me the story of the fight between Vishnu and Brahma on who is supreme. He told me how Lord Shiva took a form, which looked like pillar. Even after that story, I continued to call Vishnu as supreme because my father ended the story by saying that Brahma accepted Vishnu as greater. Later I read the same story in a magazine. The story was published on the occasion of Shivaratri. In that it was written that both Brahma and Vishnu accepted Shiva as supreme. I was surprised. But I thought that the people who wrote the story wrote it wrongly. I thought that may be it is Shivaratri, so they have written like this. I was fully convinced that this story could not be from any shastra. As I continued to grow older, I read lots of stories from Puranas. I intentionally chose stories of Vishnu (or His incarnation). In the mean time, some TV serials (like Om Namah Shivaya) showed Shiva as supreme. But I was quick to point out that it was wrong. Then one day, I thouht of reading Shiva Purana to see what is written in it. I found that Shiva Purana called Shiva as supreme. Since this was shastra, I could not reject it straightaway. Later when I studied further on this, then I found that there were lots of other places where Shastras called Shiva as supreme. But, at the same time, there are lots of places where Vishnu is called as supreme. I still call Vishnu as supreme, but I think it is because of my habit since my childhood days. After all, my belief need not be the same as shastra. Therefore, just because, since childhood days, I have been believing Vishnu to be supreme and all others, including Shiva as lower than Vishnu, it does not mean that Shastras also say the same.
  10. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    That is exactly what I am also saying. Who is called by what name has nothing to do with Sanskrit grammar. Therefore, if somebody other than Vishnu is called as Narayana, then it is not against Sanskrit grammar.
  11. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    I do not agree with you when you say that Narayana cannot be used for anyone except Vishnu. Suppose a person wants to keep his child's name as Narayana, then it is not against any rule of Sanskrit. Consider the story of Ajamila, whose son's name was Narayana. But his son was not Vishnu.
  12. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    You are saying that Rudra is common noun and Narayana is proper noun. You claim that Shaiva Acharyas have no problem accepting this. Did any Shaiva Acharyas say that Narayana is a proper noun? When Vaishnava Acharyas called Narayana as proper noun, then was there any Shaiva Acharya to debate? It is also possible that there was no Shaiva Acharya present there to debate. It does not mean that Shaiva Acharyas accept this. As an example, if I write something on Darwin's theory here and no Darwinian is here to debate on this, it does not mean that Darwinians have accepted whatever I wrote.
  13. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    DW, When there is one verse, which casts doubt on Shiva's supremacy and another, which calls Shiva as supreme, then you take the first one on face value and interpret the second to make it consistent with the first. But you are doing just the opposite in case of Vishnu. If there is one verse, which casts doubt on Vishnu's supremacy and another, which calls Vishnu as supreme, then you take the second one on face value and interpret the first to make it consistent with the second. If you can interpret "Shiva is supreme" to mean that the indweller Vishnu within Shiva is supreme, then I can interpret "Vishnu is supreme" to mean that the indweller Brahman within Vishnu is supreme.
  14. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    In a previous post, you wanted the complete text from Satapatha Brahmana, which says that Vishnu's head was cut off. Here is the text: - From 14.1.1 6. Now he who is this Vishnu is the sacrifice; and he who is this sacrifice is yonder Âditya (the sun). But, indeed, Vishnu was unable to control that (love of) glory of his; and so even now not every one can control that (love of) glory of his. 7. Taking his bow, together with three arrows, he stepped forth. He stood, resting his head on the end of the bow. Not daring to attack him, the gods sat themselves down all around him. 8. Then the ants said--these ants (vamrî), doubtless, were that (kind called) 'upadîkâ'-'What would ye give to him who should gnaw the bowstring?'-'We would give him the (constant) enjoyment of food, and he would find water even in the desert: so we would give him every enjoyment of food.' - 'So be it,' they said. 9. Having gone nigh unto him, they gnawed his bowstring. When it was cut, the ends of the bow, springing asunder, cut off Vishnu's head.
  15. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    First you say that Satapatha Brahmana mentions birth of Prajapati. Then you say that Prajapati is Vishnu here. If we combine these two statements, then we find that Satapatha Brahmana mentions birth of Vishnu.
  16. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    Correct, Amlesh. That is a very important point.
  17. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    In the same story, it is written that Siva got deluded by Mohini form of Vishnu. Of course, later he came out of delusion. But, he was under delusion at least for some time. If he is supreme, then he should not have been under delusion even for a moment. Just because Shiva drank poison, it does not prove that Vishnu could not do so. Remember Krishna ate poison when Putana tried to breastfeed him. Krishna did not die. Rather, Putana died. Where is it written that Vishnu was afraid of drinking poison?
  18. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    Thank you. You are quoting from Puranas. Where does Shruti say that Vishnu took the form of a boar? In fact Satapatha Brahmana (14.2.1.11) says that Prajapati took the form of boar. And Satapatha Brahmana is a shruti. It was easy to guess that you will talk about different yugas. But other contradictions too can be reconciled by mentioning different yugas. For example, we can say that in one yuga, Rama prayed to Shiva and in another he did not. Shiva Purana talks about one yuga and Valmiki Ramayan of another. It can also be argued that both books talk about the same yuga but Valmiki did not write about Rama worshipping Shiva. Just because Valmiki did not write, it does not mean that it did not happen. After all, we cannot expect Valmiki to have written each and every thing that Rama did.
  19. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    One more contradiction. The ancestors' list of Rama as given in Valmiki Ramayan is different from as given in Bhagavatam.
  20. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    Before anybody comes to wrong conclusions, let me make it clear that I am not a Shaiva. I belong to a Vaishnava family. In my family, all consider Vishnu as supreme. Even I have always considered Vishnu as supreme.
  21. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    Valmiki Ramayan says that it was Brahma, who took the form of a boar and raised the Earth out of water. Context: -Sage Jabali tells says that rituals are of no use. Rama gets angry. Then Vashistha tells Rama that Jabali is saying this only because he wants Rama to come back to Ayodhya. After that Vashistha says some other things - one of which is that Brahma lifted Earth out of water. Bhagavatam clearly says that Vishnu took the form of boar. So, one contradicts the other.
  22. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    What will Sri Hari gain by deluding me, Ganesh Prasad and Co. throgh tamasic puranas?
  23. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    I have no problem in accepting that Brahma can get deluded. But then, Vaishnava acharyas also can get deluded. Valmiki can also get deluded.
  24. But the judgement has still not been delivered. Or, has it been?
  25. Avinash

    Is Lord Shiva a demi-god?

    This is because the arguments given by you are obviously forced arguments to somehow prove Vishnu's supremacy. Let me go through your arguments: - You say that the Puranas showing Shiva as supreme are tamasic and, therefore, not authentic. Why not authentic? To that, your reply is that Brahma is deluded during his tamasic period. If the content of tamasic puranas is Brahma's mistake, then it must be a very big mistake. The two statements "Vishnu is greater than Shiva." and "Shiva is greater than Vishnu." are so contradictory that a person with even little bit of common sense will know that these are contradictory. If Brahma could not notice this, then we must say that he was heavily deluded. If Brahma can be so deluded, then how can anybody trust your arguments or the arguments of the Vaishnava acharyas, whom you have quoted? What is the proof that Shiva Purana is tamasic? You reply that it is written in Padma Purana. But Padma Purana has been interpolated a lot. At present, there are various versions of Padma Purana available. There is no guarantee that the verse in Padma Purana calling Shiva Purana as tamasic is not interpolation. Even if, for the sake of argument, we believe that the Padma Purana originally spoken by Brahma calls Shiva Purana as tamasic, it does not really prove that Shiva Purana is really tamasic. It is quite possible that Brahma wrote Padma Purana during his tamasic period. Since he was deluded, he wrote wrong things. Because of delusion, he did not know that he was writing wrong things. He thought that he was writing correctly even though he was writing incorrectly. Because of delusion, he called Padma Purana as sattvic though it is tamasic. Please note - I am not saying that this must be the case. But it is a big possibility if Brahma can utter incorrect statements. Moreover, it is your argument that Brahma utters incorrect statements during his tamasic period. What is the guarantee that so called sattvic puranas were spoken by Brahma during his sattvic period? May be these were spoken during his tamasic period? As per above logic, we should discard all the verses spoken by Brahma. Even Valmiki Ramayan should be discarded. Valmiki got the power to see the life of Rama from Brahma. It is possible that Brahma gave this power to Valmiki during his tamasic period. If Brahma himself was suffering from delusion, then how could his boon to Valmiki be really accurate? So, it is possible that the power, which Valmiki got, gave him incorrect information about Rama. You may argue that sattvic puranas are authentic because they match Shruti. But here I have two objections. One objection is what is the proof that tamasic puranas really contradict shruti? Saying that Padma Purana calls them tamasic is not a good argument as I have explained above. You must prove that the puranas, which you call as tamasic, really contradict shruti. Another objection is that sattvic puranas contain many things, which can neither be proven correct nor be proven wrong according to shruti. In other words, the puranas contain things, which are just not present in shruti. These verses of puranas become suspect. It is possible that Brahma spoke these so called sattvic puranas (or at least some part of them) during his tamasic period. Being in tamasic period does not mean that everything spoken by him must be wrong. Some things may be right and some things wrong. If some verses can be verified with shruti, then we know whether those are right or not. But what about other verses? Those verses become suspect. Therefore, we should consider only those portions of smriti, which can be proved to be correct according to shruti. Other portions should be discarded. Consider two sets A and B. Suppose we make the following rules: - 1. Consider all elements of A. 2. Consider only those elements of B, which are common in both A and B. Discard other elements. If we need to follow the above two rules, then we do not need to look into B at all. This is because the elements of B, which should be considered are present in A also. So, why not study only A? By the same logic, we should not consider any portion of smriti at all. Study only shruti? But in your arguments, you have relied a lot on smriti by calling that smriti as sattvic. You called one verse as interpolation because meter does not match. I agree with you here. But, has anybody, really checked the meters of all the verses in all scriptures to make sure that the meter is correct? Or, only when a verse was found to be in contradiction to one's belief, that the meter was checked? In another case, when meter was correct, then you claimed that Rudra referred to Vishnu because Narayan is a proper noun, but Rudra is not. How can you claim that Narayan is a proper noun? The word "narayan" means one who lives inside water. Of course, Vishnu lives inside water. But it does not mean that nobody else can. If you argue that Vishnu only is called as Narayan because of certain incidents like Vishnu residing in causal ocean and garbhodak ocean, then I can argue that only Shiv is called as Rudra because Brahma asked him not to cry. You have quoted from Satapata Brahmana. Like you, I also consider it as authentic because it is proved to be very ancient text. Satapata Brahmana contains the story of how Vishnu's head was cut off when Vamri ants ate up the thread of the bow on which Vishnu was resting his head. This story does not find mention in the puranas, which show Vishnu as supreme. But it does find mention in Devi Bhagavatam. Will you consider Devi Bhagavatam as authentic? If not, then what contradiction do you find between Devi Bhagavatam and Shruti? If yes, then do you believe that Adi Shakti is supreme and Vishnu is not? After all, Devi Bhagavatam says that Vishnu is not supreme. When you were asked why devas went to Shiva to pray to Vishnu dwelling inside Shiva and why they did not go directly to Vishnu, then you replied that Shiva is devata's guru. But guru is a medium to get us to God. If I directly see God in front of me, then why should I go to guru and why not to God? Suppose that God comes in front of you. Won't you talk to him directly?
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