Countering COVID-19 with Agnihotra and Yajñopathy

(Editorial note: The information presented in this article from literature and personal practice provides food for thought, but perhaps more as a provocative theory of using ancient practices for modern environmental and medical problems. Scientific research to examine these ideas will be essential to apply such information for public good.)

-Sh. Anand Gaikwad

(….continued from previous article)

Vedic sciences have a proven tool/methodology for dealing with pollution problems, plagues and epidemics of all types particularly as a Preventive Care and that is Agnihotra and Yajñopathy (Homa Therapy) as a part of day to day life. Astrality of a field or area as also of the individuals can be improved with purification of Atmosphere. ‘Heal the Atmosphere and healed Atmosphere will heal you’ is the fundamental principle of healing by Vedic Sciences. Param Sadguru Shri Gajanan Maharaj narrated the essence of Satya Sanatana Dharma, i.e., panch sādhan mārg or fivefold path.  Take ‘Yajña, Dān, Tapa, Karma and Swādhyāya’, as your way of life and that is the eternal religion given by Vedas to the humanity.

The Bheshajya Yajña is a part of Vedic Yajña System and is to be performed during the transition period (Sandhi-kāl) of two seasons. Therefore three Bheshajya Yajñas are to be performed as, ’Nitya’ (Regular order) in a year. This is known as ‘Chaturmāsya Esti or Yajña. Change in seasons has impact on plant life, animal life and human life. We generally have cough, cold and fever (Flu-like symptoms) during this time. Therefore our great Sages made Bheshajya Yajña as a part of life. Shri Vasant V. Paranjpe has described ‘Bheshyajya Yajña’ as ‘Medicinal Yajñas’ in his book ‘Homa Therapy our Last Chance’.

Research on Agnihotra  and Yajñopathy

I would like to mention on Agnihotra and Yajñopathy to deal with COVID-19 at least as a Preventive Care (of course in addition to Govt. Guidelines about washing hands, keeping personal hygiene, social distancing, wearing mask in public etc.) and also at least one very relevant and important research study here, which probably may or may not be there  in the aforesaid compilation:

An interesting study of Shri Rahul Ravindran Nair, ‘Agnihotra : A Prototype of South Asian Traditional Medical Knowledge’ indicates as follows:

This study conceptualizes the principles of Agnihotra Yajña. The perusal of ancient and modern literature reveals that the functioning of the human body is impossible without maintaining an energetic continuum driven by sunlight. The seven major chakras existing over the spinal cord help to maintain this energetic continuum. Agnihotra Yajña is proposed to balance the chakra system as a whole by minimizing entropy. Offerings of natural elements to fire lit in a copper pyramid during Agnihotra liberate various volatile compounds having potent pharmacological actions. Attempts were made to enhance the efficacy of fumes by incorporating two to three pieces of coconut endosperm and ‘navadhānya’ (nine grains) to the conventional oblations. This investigation clearly demonstrates that the purpose behind the practice of Agnihotra Yajña is ‘letting incessant flow of energy (life) through our meridian lines and acupuncture points. The volatile organic compounds in smoke were analysed using gas chromatography and masspectrometry method …

… In addition to the ingredients tested, cow ghee is another important traditional ingredient that is poured into the fire. The fumes that are liberated during the combustion of ghee help to protect the respiratory system and facilitate the removal of blood clots and the bacterial infections in nasal passage lungs and veins. Hence daily exposure to this medicinal smoke should certainly have a favourable influence on the health of the mind and body of the person inhaling the fume. In addition, the potent antimicrobial action of the above identified compounds, purifies the air in the place where Agnihotra is performed……

…These electromagnetic waves, together with the chanting of Vedic hymns (unique sonic signals) have potential health benefits. The combustion of offerings in the Agnihotra pyramid is thought to increase PCE/Chi/Prana in the surrounding atmosphere and the intake of this increased quantum of PCE/Chi/Prana by breathing is thought to optimize the alignment of chakras and would certainly establish energy connections between the physical body and the electromagnetic body via the chakra system…..

..In the light of all the above facts, Agnihotra Yajña can be considered as a complementary medicine that removes the energy blocks in the meridians/nādis. In conclusion the ultimate purpose of practicing Agnihotra Yajña is to realize “Life” which means ‘letting incessant flow of energy’ through our body–mind system as any blockage in this flow would cause disharmony and chaos in the system, thus leading to poor health.”

Although the ingredients used and studied in Shri Nair’s experiment are different from the standardized ingredients used in daily Agnihotra as recommended by Param Sadguru; the results, observations and conclusions are important from the point of Yajñopathy for building immunity.

Practical recommendations

Agnihotra

Agnihotra’ as ‘Kāmdhenu’ not only give protective shield against COVID-19 as a preventive measure but also bring health, peace and prosperity to people performing Agnihotra by purifying the atmosphere.

The performance of Agnihotra at sunrise and sunset is a must as this Primary and Supreme Yajña through its Resonance Effect captures many ethers, electricities and subtle energies at sunrise and broadcasts them in the atmosphere for its purification.

While interpreting Rigvedic Surya Sūkta (Mandala 1 Hymn 115 and Mandala 10 Hymn 170) Shri Shyam Ghosh says, ‘The invisible electromagnetic waves of cosmic energy carry the properties of heat, light and sound which manifest when those come in contact with matter’. (Rigveda for Layman-Shatsukta Paridarshanam by Shyam Ghosh).

Article, ‘Corona Pandemic- Aspects and Perspectives’ refer to our active self-movement and our relation with the sun, i.e., our rhythmical system is connected with the sun and its course throughout the day. Agnihotra establishes connectivity between our biorhythm and the biorhythm of circadian cycle of sunrise and sunset and the subtle energies emanating from the sun are attracted even if you are confined to your house.

Yajñayopathy (Homa Therapy)

In addition to performing Agnihotra daily, I would recommend performing daily or from time to time ‘Tryambakam Homa’ for about fifteen minutes in which one is able to offer oblations with Tryambakam Mantra for about 108 times.

ॐत्र्यंबकं यजामहे, सुगंधिंपुष्टिवर्धनम्।

उर्वारुकमिव बंधनान्मृत्योर्मुक्षीयमाSमृतात  स्वाहा।।

The oblations to be offered in the sacred fire will be that of pure Cow-ghee fortified and enriched with certain essential oils which have antiseptic, antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral, antimicrobial, antispasmodic properties to deal with pathogenic bacteria and viruses of any type, therefore it is called as ‘Amrut Havi’, this is recommended by Dr. Kamal Narayan Arya, a Research Scientist of Ayurveda and Yajnyopathy. In ‘Panch Mahā Yajña Vidhi’, Swami Dayanand Sarswati said ‘this śloka not only gives beautiful description of Agnihotra but also prescribes guidelines for preparation of Havirdravya (Medicinal, Aromatic, Strength and Energy giving herbs/medicinal substances for giving offerings to the fire). He says:

अग्नये परमेश्वराय जलवायुशुद्धिकरणायच, होत्रं हवनं दानं यस्मिनकर्मणिक्रियते ‘तद्-अग्निहोत्रम्’ सुगन्धिपुष्टिमिष्टबुद्धिवृद्धिशौर्यबलकरैऱ्गुणर्युक्तानाम्द्रव्यांणांहोमकरणेन वायु-वृष्टिजलयो:शुद्धख्यापृथिवीस्थपदार्थानांसर्वेषांशुद्धवायुजलयोगादत्यन्तोत्तमतयासर्वेषांजीवानांपरमसुखंभवत्येव।अतस्तत्कर्मकर्तृणांजनानांतदुपकारतयाSत्यंतसुखलाभोभवतीश्वरप्रसन्नताचेत्येतददाद्यर्थम्अग्निहोत्रकरणम्।

Therefore in preparation of Havirdravya aromatic substances like Kesar, Kasturi, Ghee and Milk-like nutritious and strength–giving products, sweet things like jaggery, sugar, honey and medicinal herbs/plants like somalata, disease curing medicinal herbs/plants /substances be used. The following are the ingredients of this Havi:

Amrut Dhara (Divya Dhara)

This is a preparation of three ingredients i.e. Crystaline essence of Ajwain (Omum-Trychyspermum ammi), Pepper Mint (Mentha spicata), and Bhimseni Camphor (Cinemomum camphora).When all these three ingredients in crystal form are mixed together in a bottle automatically they get melted into a liquid form. It is anti-septic, anti-bacterial and head-ache and pain remover.

Cardamom Oil (Elettaria cardamomum)

Anti-spasmodic-muscular and respiratory spasms, muscle pulls and cramps, anti-bacterial, anti-mycotic, anti-viral, carminative activities. Used in  asthama, whooping cough  and as overall health-booster.

Clove Oil (Syzygium aromaticum)

Chemical constituents are iron, calcium ,potassium, phosphorous, vitamin A and C, minerals, compounds like eugenol, eugenol acetate etc. anaesthetic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative and anti-inflammatory.

Cinnamom Oil / Dalchini oil (Cinnamomum zeylanicum)

Number of compounds including cinnamaldehyde  which reduces inflammation, anti-bacterial, carminative, anti-microbial, antifungal; suppresses the growth of microorganisms including bacteria and fungi-good for cough, cold, constipation etc.

Malkangani Oil / Jyotishmati Oil (Celastrus paniculatus)

Helpful for concentration and memory-used in Divya MedhaVati. Steam inhalation for treating upper respiratory infections, cardiac tonic, diuretic in nature, low-BP, vigor and vitality.

Almond Oil  (Prunus dulcis  amygdalus )

High in anti-oxidants, vitamin E, protects cells from harmful substances/free radicals, maintains blood-sugar control and heart-health, acitic, formic, linolenic and palmatic acids

Ten ml. of each of the above six oils is to be added to half a kilo of pure Cow-ghee and this fortified cow-ghee is to be offered as oblations to the fire while chanting Tryambakam Mantra. Even if you light a lamp of this Goghrita (Cow-ghee) in your house it will give results; but performing Tryambakam Homa for fifteen to twenty minutes will be better, because the vibrations of Tryambakam Mantra will have the resonance effect for  creating a protective shield.

Ayurvedic Home Remedy

One more home remedy is preparation of a decoction (Kaḍā) as a preventive measure for COVID-19. This Kaḍā is made up of 7-10 fresh leaves of each of Adulsa (Adhatoda vassica), Parijat (Nyctanthes arbortristis), Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum), Bael (Aegle marmelos) and Lemon grass (Cymbopogon citratus) with addition of approx. two grams of each of Black pepper (Piper nigrum), Peepali (Piper longum), Star spice, Sunthi (dry ginger powder),  Cinnamom  powder. Boil all these ingredients into 1.5 to 2 litres of water to make it as a one litre of Kaḍā and keep it bottled. You can prepare a hot drink of this Kaḍā by adding a table spoon of the preparation to one cup of tolerably hot water and take it with lemon and honey. You can sip this hot drink two-three times in a day. You can also add a table-spoon of this preparation to the vapourizer and inhale the vapours, whenever you have cough and cold or you are sneezing. Parijat has been found to be very useful in case of fever and joint pain in cases of Chickungunya. This Kaḍā will be helpful as a preventive measure as well as an immunity booster when combined with Agnihotra and Trambakam Homa.

Sh. Anand GaikwadKrishi Bhushan Sendriya  Sheti  M. S. & Retd. Executive Director/Company Secretary

What Modern Science, Anthroposophy and other Theories have to say about the Emergence and Existence of Corona Viruses?

-Sh. Anand Gaikwad

The Pandemic of new Corona virus SARS-Cov-2 or ‘COVID-19’ has caused unprecedented social, economic, cultural as also political consequences in the lives of people in almost all the counties of the world. At present there is a fierce race amongst all the countries for the search of vaccine/remedial measures for COVID-19, but so far the success seems to be far off, and in fact it is not clear that even after vaccines/therapeutic medicines are made available in sufficient quantities whether COVID-19 in its new form will not keep on returning? WHO has already indicated that, ‘Corona virus’ is going to stay and we will have to live with it, accept it and adapt our life-styles to its existence.

What the Science has learnt and is learning about Corona viruses.

Corona virus is a generic name for a virus that originates in an animal and gets transmitted to human beings. Dr. Sasi Kumar Menon, Associate Professor at Ruia College, Mumbai in his presentation entitled, ‘COVID-19: What has Science Learnt and is still Learning’, finds some similarities between SARS-CoV and COVID-19 and maintains that although Horseshoe bats are natural reservoirs of Corona viruses, there are different intermediary hosts through which they are transmitted to human beings. The slides of WHO Table and Intermediary Hosts from his presentation are given here.

Although in case of COVID-19 the fatality percentage is less as compared to earlier Corona viruses, it is more fearsome; more contagious and fast spreading. Dr. Menon attributes reasons for origin of SARS–CoV and COVID-19 to China to its lucrative Wild Animal Market.

There are Wild Animal Breeding Farms and caged animals in market place that have close proximity with each other including human beings and thus Corona viruses are easily passed on to human beings. Dr. Menon makes an interesting question as to “Whom we should blame for CoVs, BATs or HUMAN Lifestyles?”

This is an irony that despite spending billions of dollars in R&D the Pharma Industry and Medical Profession have not come out with vaccines or effective medical treatments for Corona virus infections which have flu-like symptoms.

The Economic Times Magazine dated 15-21 March, 2020

Anthroposophical View

The Anthroposophical view of COVID-19 supports the view of animal torture as the cause of the spread of this virulent and intelligent virus differently. Shri Josef Graf in his article, ‘Corona virus – Meeting COVID-19 head on with Anthroposophy’. According to him, the origin of COVID-19 is likely due to the debasing of the general Astral Field of the area (and many of the inhabitants themselves) due to the suffering of animals. Massive Factory Farming in China has been degrading the quality of life for animals for a while now.

  • Both the Wuhan lab-work and the local animal meat market contained suffering animals and /or animal meat products.
  • Animal suffering lives in ‘mass meat and eggs’, etc. and is transferred into human Astral Bodies”

In another theory, he revealed that “whenever we have these modern pandemics, they have tended to originate wherever high-tech radiation has been a factor. In this case the first roll out of 5G-Technology is said to have taken place in Wuhan province. The Anthroposophic view is, The Corona pandemic affects humans, and evidently no animals are falling ill (although there may be some exceptions). It thus clearly indicates that it is related to the ‘I’ being. Prevention and cure must therefore also include the spiritual dimension alongside many other things.’

Nature’s Balancing Theory / Absolute’s Correction Theory

There is another theory for the emergence and existence of COVID-19, and that is the ‘Nature’s Balancing Theory’ or ‘Absolute’s Correction Theory’. Dr. Chand Bhardwaj (the Originator and Author of ‘Co-AIM Theory and Practice’, which very briefly means Co-relation theory of Attention, Information and Material) puts this theory as, ‘Jaisi Karani Vaisi Bharani’. Universal Cosmic Order is an intelligent and conscious design, where everything works in a set order. All Cosmic Creation is divine and all beings including animals and humans are three-in-one:

Soul = Attention – Outer expression of Creative Intelligence-connected to its origin Absolute;

Mind = Information of time (past and future events and experiences) -connected to Universal Mind;

Body = Material (elements) – Material body made out of the floating material like our earth and planets (Panchtatva).

The Absolute Creative Intelligence through its Universal Mind carries on the functions of regulation of the Universal Cosmic Order. The correction takes place as per Newton’s third law i.e. ‘Every action has an equal and opposite reaction’. The Absolute Intelligence and a capable force operate the Universal Mind to enforce the laws of Nature. The animal sufferings through their bodies and mind communicated to the Absolute as a Single Sensor of all senses, as well as Planet Earth’s devastations due to man-made pollution, witnessed by the omniscient Absolute/ Universal Mind; might have set in the correction process to teach a few lessons to the human species. Human beings are threatened by COVID-19 but all other beings and Nature are welcoming this change. Ecological balance and Atmospheric Order are getting set properly. Articles published on Vedic WAVES blog by Aparna (Dhir) Khandelwal, Brig J.S.Rajpurohit, and Raghava S. Boddupalli on this subject highlighting harmony with nature.

Also, quoting few lines of Vi Vienne  in Spain –

“The Earth whispered but you did not hear. The earth spoke but you did not listen. The Earth screamed but you turned her off…….And so I was born. I was not born to punish you. I was born to awaken you……The Earth cried out for help….massive flooding. But you did not listen…..Start caring about the Earth and all its creatures. Start believing in (your) Creator….Signed Corona Virus”

Vedic View

The wisdom of Vedas provides principles, values and guidelines for dealing with problems in life. Dis-harmonized life-styles in conflict with the nature and large scale man-made pollution are the main causes of human suffering and ill-health. Param  Sadguru  Shri  Gajanan  Maharaj said that so long as Agni Upāsana (Yajña) was in vogue Bhārat  Varsha was a rich and glorious country, but with its loss, the spread of slavery, poverty, diseases and epidemics have become rampant and beyond the control of man (हवन पुस्तिका, वेदविज्ञान अनुसंधान संस्था, सोलापुर). COVID-19 pandemic has made world re-examine interconnection between man and nature. ‘Yajña’ and ‘Yoga’ are the two basic concepts of Vedas and Vedic Sciences.

Sarvam Yajñayamayam Jagat

 The whole universe is the process of Yajña

The twin objectives of Yajña are: Vyashti Kalyan and Samashti Kalyan. Vedic Sciences have a lot more to offer for Samashti Kalyan and countering pandemics like COVID-19, but that would need another article to follow.

(to be continued…..)

Sh. Anand GaikwadKrishi Bhushan Sendriya  Sheti  M. S. & Retd. Executive Director/Company Secretary

Management Lessons from Migration of Yadu Community to Dwārkā and Contemporary Labour Migration During COVID-19 (Part-III)

(Continued from Part-II)

Brig JS Rajpurohit, Ph.D.

Introduction

Dvāpara era of four-fold cyclical theory of Socio-political and religious change observed in the ancient Indian history, mass exodus from Mathura to Dwārkā is an exemplary case of management of human resource and disciplined crowd. The then elite section of society not only denoted but connoted Śri Kṛśṇa with the derogatory word, “Ranchod” (who flees from battle Jarāsandha, the king of Magadha wanted to take revenge from Śri Kṛśṇa for, he has killed his son-in-law, Kansa.

He had attacked Mathura seventeen times and had damaged the city, mired growth, hampered normal peace, civic life and progress. Jarāsandha was defeated by Lord Kṛśṇa in all the seventeen attacks. In his eighteenth attack, Jarāsandha made alliances with friendly forces to exterminate Yadu community. Realizing the gravity of situation, Śri Kṛśṇa acted wisely and decided to migrate majority of inhabitants from Mathura to Dwārkā.

This was the straw that broke camel’s back and forced Lord Kṛśṇa to take immediate action for survival of his clan or be prepared to suffer major losses. Lord Kṛśṇa took a bold decision and migrated Yadu community to Dwārkā. He had no time to plan the migration and was forced to migrate with almost no preparatory time. It would have taken him over a month (considering distance and resources available) a long time to reach Dwārkā but he had organized the migration with a fore thought, detailed planning and meticulous execution.

Management of people, animals and bullock carts all along 800 miles was a grand feat in those days, and has a number of lessons for us to follow, especially in times of COVID-19 crisis when labour migration became a major management issue. Migration of labor from a number of states back to their native villages was an unprecedented move that Indian government was unprepared for and actions taken by the government have lessons from ancient Indian migration organized by Lord Kṛśṇa.

Some questions arise in the present context; What forced Kṛśṇa to migrate? Why did he select Dwārkā only and not any other city? How did he organize the migration? Time taken and overcoming major turbulence due to migration? Could the contemporary migration of labour have been better organized than what was witnessed and our lessons from Lord Kṛśṇa?

Migration Lessons from Study of Contemporary Migration with the One Organized by Lord Kṛśṇa

Reasons to Migrate

Primary reason was fear of King Jarāsandha attacking Mathura in alliance with Kala Yavana (the Mlecchha king), Emperor Damghosha of Chedi, king Dantavakra of Karusa, Rukmi of Vidarbha and Avnti brothers Vind and Anuvinda. The main aim of Jarāsandha was to completely destroy Mathura and kill Kṛśṇa and Balrām. Jarāsandha had offered to Yadavas to hand over both brothers Kṛśṇa and Balrām to him failing which he would destroy Mathura. Kṛśṇa sought help of Hastināpur but they also expressed inability to help, and hence, Kṛśṇa was left with no choice. In contemporary issue of migration of labour,

the fear of death and destruction was very strong; death either by COVID-19 or by hunger; as there was complete lockdown in the country and with no job, survival was difficult. Decision was to migrate with families and children added to misery of migrants. There was no transport and hence journey was on foot, cycle or rikshaws. Time and distance from Delhi (taken as one central location) was almost 1300 kilometres (800 miles) that Kṛśṇa moved. Though Kṛśṇa, being avatar of Lord Viśṇu, could have killed Jarāsandha but spared him to be later killed by Bhīma, a devotee of Lord Viśṇu.

Selection of Dwārkā as destination

Primary reason was to move to a safe place where Jarāsandha would not be able to reach. Northern and central Bharat was within reach of Jarāsandha, the Magadh emperor, and hence were vulnerable. South was a suitable area; Gomantaka mountain and king of Raivata of Ikṣavāku Vamsa were strong obstacles for Jarāsandha as compared to northern region. Sea on the west coast was invincible by Jarāsandha and hence Kṛśṇa planned to migrate to Kaushasthali which he later named as Dwārkā (Dwār meaning gate and kā meaning mokṣa i.e. gateway to mokṣa).

In present scenario, migrating labour moved from states like Maharashtra, Gujrat, Punjab, Delhi and others to their native places in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, Assam, etc. Last census by the government was conducted in 2011 that shows an existing and known pattern of migration within India that people undertake in search of jobs. But this was an unexpected and unique reverse migration due to unprecedented pandemic that created panic among labour and

temporary social instability in India. Timely assessment of situation and planning of movement could have prevented the circumstances becoming serious and masses moving on the streets. The state governments like UP and Bihar became active and started sending buses for their respective labour that the centre and Delhi governments also started helping. The situation took political, economic and social complex web and took longer to settle.

The migration plans

Lord Kṛśṇa had to migrate over night against will of Balrām, king Agrasen and many others. They all were ready to fight Jarāsandha and even prepared to die. But that was not acceptable to Kṛśṇa. He preferred his clan to migrate and survive. The move was majority on foot and in bullock carts. Mythology also says that Lord Kṛśṇa prayed and Bhu devī moved them overnight in their sleep to Kaushalsthali to which the author has reservations as it appears more of philosophical construct about the migration. Move of ladies, children and animals would have been slow, difficult and torturous. Kṛśṇa organized their stay enroute in Gomanatak mountains and with Raivata king. To that end, he even accepted marriage of princess Revati daughter of King Raivata with Balrām.

Resource management and controlling movement of the clan with the help of friendly kings ensured safety and well-being of his people. A contemporary analysis of labour migration during pandemic suggests that this movement was sudden and possibly administration was taken aback and had no plans in place at the outset for labour migrating from west to east. It was a graduated response

from government officials and plans were implemented as per the developing situation. Trains like Shramjivi Express were pressed into service much later. The dilemma of letting them migrate or stop all movements itself was not clear. Adhoc administrative arrangements were made by various districts’ administration, Non-government Organisations, and local people between Delhi and Lucknow and beyond to Patna.

Leadership

The leadership during the migration of Yādavas was well defined; Lord Kṛśṇa was in charge and he along with his brother Balrām orchestrated entire journey. Kṛśṇa had his share of social, physical, economic threats before, during and post migration which he tackled through flexibility of thought and decisive in action. In contemporary migration of labour, there were number of leaders in the fray, each one with personal, social and national goals. Though the common aim was safety of the migrants but whether they should move or stay in respective locations itself was a major decision dilemma.

Meanwhile, the labour continued to travel, which posed leadership challenges at both state and centre level. Despite a sincere leader like Mr Narendra Modi being at the helm of affairs, the situation got out of control. The realization dawned much later when integrated and collective decisions were taken to use public transport for movement of the migrants. The democratic challenges could have been overcome if, civil administration had adapted a flexible style of collaborative leadership style. May be some political leaders could have risen to visionary and servant leadership levels, the situation would have been different.

Conclusion

The two cases of migration are far different in time zones, yuga zones, technology and almost in every other sense; some readers may even find it comparing apples with oranges, the fact still remains that people migrated and they suffered the agony of leadership crises and consequent physical, economic and psycho- socio predicaments. The datum shows that a huge number of men and women was humiliated, they became outcastes within their own nation. Empathy and physical support were

so much more needed during migration as compared to any other time in recent history. When the well to-do people in the society needed them, they enjoyed their at services but when that need was temporarily ended due to COVID-19; we did not look after them and they were forced to migrate back to their villages and towns. Once the realization dawned that these very people are the working force of India; measures were put in place to help them out. Gradually the situation eased out.

We needed a Kṛśṇa in present crisis who could have reduced their agony, if not fully overcome.

We have a charismatic leader who can impact the situation in future

Brig JS Rajpurohit, Ph.D. Group Commander, Group HQ NCC, Gorakhpur (UP)

Dvāpara Management Perspective of Migrants in India during COVID-19 : The Fixes that Failed (Part-II)

(Continued from Part-I)

Brig JS Rajpurohit, Ph.D.

“Fixes that fail”; Systems View of COVID-19

This is an analysis of the labour migration crisis from system’s view though one of the archetypes known as “Fixes that fail”. 

Government of India declared Lockdown on 22nd March, 2020 that had unintended consequences of labour from various metros migrating to their home towns. These unintended outcomes were rectified by fresh measures to prevent migration but unfortunately further deteriorated into complex psycho-social dilemma and a crisis. This cycle of actions and reactions was repeated till some acceptable solution was arrived at. The situation should have been dealt with, in a more rational manner to stop migration or manage it effectively. Cause and effect and circles of causality (Figure 1 of fixes that fail) identify the problem with two feedback loops; Balancing loop B1 and Reinforcing loop R1. System’s view shows balancing B1 loop where in due to country wide lockdown due to COVID-19, the labour class working in metros e.g. Delhi, started migrating back to their home towns in UP, Bihar, West Bengal, Assam and other states.

As the pandemic spread, migration numbers swell; depicted by ‘S’ in Figure 1; meaning rising migration rates which caused people to violate law and order. It forced the government to take harsh measures to prevent migration to protect people from getting infected. Steps by the Delhi government reduced the migration temporarily as shown by balancing part by ‘O’ in B1 loop. This was the first set of fixes or measures by the government that should have solved the problem. By these measures, part of migrating population was checked and stopped either within Delhi or at the borders of Delhi and UP. Since the measures put in place by the government were not strong enough, the impact multiplied and more labour started migrating as shown by ‘S1’ in R1 loop.

Multiplying effect led to people congregating at various places for buses and not finding them started hiring other means of transport or started walking along highways. Actions by the government, halted the migration temporarily but accentuated the problem with every passing day (time delay) called ‘Delay’ in Reinforcing loop R1 and it was visible on ground. Poverty and hunger added fuel to the fire. There was pandemonium across the nation and uneasy tension among Indians for inability of government to resolve the challenge could be felt. This impact is depicted by ‘S2’ in R1 loop. The entire issue is analysed with a holistic or ‘system’s view’ that says that for every problem, there are solutions that have to be assessed and applied in a holistic manner, failing which the measures fail and problem gets compounded. As problem gets compounded, further actions are initiated by the actors and situation improves only to worsen. The process continues till problem is resolved with a long time and suffering of people as penalty. In the instant case of migration, it could have been appreciated by administration and dealt with holistically before it became a social challenge. The police actions to maintain law and order became part of vicious cycle. Governments of Delhi, UP and Bihar got involved for their respective interests. State governments wanted safe return of their people from Delhi, Mumbai etc. and in the milieu, migrating people violated government rules of social distancing and lockdown, which led to Delhi government issuing next  set of orders to improve upon previous orders to stop the movement (depicted in Figure 1 by ‘S”).

These are the remedial measures adopted by the government in R1 reinforcing loop and as shown by blue stars in Figure 2 based on feedback of the unintended consequences of the first set of corrective actions taken by the government.

B1 loop could have been closed with the situation balancing out and with no side effects. However, the loop caused delay in seeking solutions or the repercussions of the corrective actions by the government were not strong enough. As a result, the situation had side effects that required immediate attention of the government. Attempts of migrants to reach home earliest led to actions by the police, imposition of curfew, violation of curfew by migrating labour and social disharmony. This was not the desired outcome by the government and hence led to additional measures till situation was resolved. A graphical representation of the situation of Fixes that fail in Figure 2 shows improvement in the situation over a long period but with a dip after every action by the government.

COVID-19 has posed a crisis the world has not witnessed since Spanish flu of 1918-1919. It is an unprecedented history in the making. Indian government response and handling of the pandemic has been one of the best in the world. In the instant situation that India is in; threat of COVID-19 is a real one and the migration is similar to the one Lord Kṛśṇa faced. Facing the calamity of an impending terrible war he was able to move a large chunk of population from Mathura to Dwarika without much upheaval.

Government under leadership of Mr. Narendra Modi deserves accolades for serving the humanity and saving millions of lives in the country from COVID-19. The government administration has effectively managed spread of the pandemic and Indian response has been appreciated the world over. However, response to deal with the migration of labour, consequent to pandemic and orders of Lockdown, requires deliberations. The measures taken by the government to fix the problems ended up creating different yet more problems instead and logical planning to deal with socio-economic issues needed to be developed. Preventing migration was the right decision but survival package in places of residence was a must in such sensitive circumstances. A planned operation to keep the labour wherever they were and looking after them would have been possibly an effective way to deal with the reverse migration.

And if the decision of the Government was to move the labour back to their villages, this too could have been planned systematically and entire movement could have been made comfortable and rejoicing journey for the poor and homeless. Any more politics on the issue is detrimental to our very existence as a nation and our economy, as our survival base depends on these humble, poor, shell shocked silent migrants.

If Lord Kṛśṇa could succeed in his times, so can we in our times.

To be continued…..

Brig JS Rajpurohit, Ph.D. Group Commander, Group HQ NCC, Gorakhpur (UP)

Dvāpara Management Perspective of Migrants in India during COVID-19 : The Situation and the Problem (Part-I)

Brig JS Rajpurohit, Ph.D.

आवयोर्युध्यतोरस्य यद्यगन्ता जरासुत|
बन्धून् वधिष्यत्यथवा नेष्यते स्वपुरं बली||47||

“If powerful Jarāsandha comes while we are busy fighting Kālayavana, Jarāsandha may kill our relatives or else take them away to his capital.”

(Śrīmad Bhāgwatam 50.47)

Lord Kṛśṇa led the migration of entire Yadu community from Mathura to Kausalsthali or Dwarka to protect his clan from Kālayavana and Jarāsandha who were ready to attack Mathura from two different directions. Jarāsandha had attacked Mathura 17 times earlier and was defeated by Lord Kṛśṇa every time. The Śrī Kṛśṇa ensured that before the mass exodus, inevitable requirements to sustain the community were arranged at Kausalsthali; Lord Kṛśṇa had ensured adequate safety and livelihood measures, besides offering prayers to Varuṇa deva (Ocean God) to release twelve yojana land for planned city and requested Lord Viśwakarmā to construct a fortified city to ensure safety and welfare of his people.

COVID-19 has brought about unique circumstances in India that have influenced Indian economy, polity, society and environment. Burgeoning population and sudden migration of masses, specially labour class has resulted into an unexpected crisis. It has deeply altered the psyche of every conscious Indian, particularly the poor. Throughout the globe, different governments are fighting the infection in their own ways with their specific internal and external methodologies. Migration figures released by Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on 05 April, 2020 showed that over 1.25 million migrant workers were residing in temporary shelters in 27,661 relief camps organized by various state governments in India.

The daily newspaper, ‘The Hindu’s’  legal correspondent on 07 April, 2020 reported that a large number of NGOs (non-governmental organizations) and social groups also came forward to help the victims COVID-19. Chief Justice of India was informed that State and Centre authorities provided food to over 54 lakhs and NGOS helped out over 30 lakh displaced people at different places in the country. “This reverse migration is one of the largest in the history”, says, The Wall Street Journal. People are moving from cities to rural areas due to panic created by the pandemic.

A large number of people from states like Uttar Pradesh (UP), Bihar, Madhya Pradesh (MP), Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, West Bengal and J&K migrate every year to metros and states with ample opportunities and prospects of employment in different sectors of economic activities. UP followed by Bihar are the biggest donor states and Maharashtra followed by Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala are the largest recipient states  in the  migration pattern. Those in search of employment in any form are primarily poor people with limited skills and get jobs in power, energy, construction sectors. 2011 census of migration by NSSO states that almost 400 million population or one third of India migrated in search of jobs. Rural to urban migration figures stand 22.1% where most men get absorbed in industrial and infrastructure sectors and women in cottage/MSME/Homes. A view of the migration pattern provides enough evidences to suggest its importance in building Indian economy. South Asia Journal, 2011 reflects a vibrant state of internal Indian migration figures.

The nature of recent migration during April-May 2020 projects a new pattern for it is not part the routine regular move of people to and fro from their native places; it is a forced reverse migration due to pandemic. Centre and state governments were busy managing the COVID-19 crisis and urban and metro residents locked themselves. It appeared that that’s the end of their hope of survival and possibly that psychological stress with no clear statement and policy direction from state governments and civil administration were major reasons for instant reaction. Sudden movement was unexpected and unanticipated; it dishonored all rules and regulations of COVID-19 and added a new dimension to existing COVID-19 crisis. If the government administration had been proactive to social undercurrent and adaptive to handle human disasters; this crisis of reverse migration could have been mitigated. The exodus of migrant workers could have been prevented or at least better managed to ease their return. The need was to realize the enormity of this unfortunate crisis and its professional management. The management of the crowd involved use of police force and punishing the hungry men and women without any remorse and emotions is unexpected of a civilized democratic egalitarian society and state. The same very people who were supporting pillars of the society, became social burden just because they did not belong where they worked, and were poor.

Human history has experienced pandemic in the past as well and managed by the administration successfully. Śrī Kṛśṇa provides a vivid example of mass exodus in Dvāpara Yuga and Paliwal community in medieval period of Indian history. Ancient Indian civilization, the Harappan civilization migrated from Indus valley to Indo-Gangetic plains. These are but some of the examples to draw our lessons from. Harappan civilization flourished after migration. Unfortunately, the present political and civil administrative structure is struggling to help migrants reach their home destinations. The determination of governments and people in present circumstances will decide what lies in store for our next generation.

To be continued…..

Brig JS Rajpurohit, Ph.D. Group Commander, Group HQ NCC, Gorakhpur (UP)

Godliness, Strength and Grit

-Dr. Ravi P Bhatia

They said it was the Asian century

With economies booming

Democratic principles shining

Scholarship, education rising

We  see these aspects arising

The century only a fifth gone

Many efforts still to be done

Several years still remain

The optimist will refrain 

From disputing the current grain

The pessimist highlights the coming doom

When it will be darkness at noon

What about the ordinary citizen

The poor homeless migrant

Who has lost his status,

His livelihood in the COVID virus

S/He will not despair

They will stand up and share

Whatever little they have to spare

With the other homeless migrants

Who are their brotheren and sisteren

There are examples galore

Of their humanity and more

They pick the miserables from the street

Give them something to eat

They push them in their carts

Who thank them in their hearts

They ride their bicycles or walk

Covering long distances to their home

The families give hearty welcome

A newborn smiles to see her father home

As long as they are fit

And have strength and grit

They will not grieve

They will struggle but thrive

And show the world they are alive

Yes the Asian century belongs to these braves

And India’s Vedic thought adds to their  strength

Where do these braves get their strength

In India along the breadth and its length

A spirit of God head or Parmātmā pervades 

They say that they don’t love God

Rather it is God that loves them 

Blesses them, soaks them

In a  spirit of Divinity

Godliness and Unity

-Dr. Ravi P Bhatia, Former Senior Officer, University of Delhi

‘कोरोना की चाल’ से बदले-बदले ‘समाज के कदम’….!

डा. अपर्णा (धीर) खण्डेलवाल

हमेशा से ही खुद को स्वतंत्र समझने वाले मानव को….

आज, ‘परतंत्रता’ का एहसास दिला दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१॥

स्वच्छंद होकर भ्रमण करने वाली मानव-जाति को….

आज, ‘पिंजरे’ का एहसास दिला दिया इस कोरोना ने॥२॥

अपनी ‘Facevalue’ पर नाज़ करने वाले मनुष्यों के मुख पर….

आज, ‘Mask’ पहना दिया इस कोरोना ने॥३॥

‘मुख की सुंदरता’ से ‘मन की सुंदरता’ है बलवान….

आज, ‘ज्ञात’ करा दिया इस कोरोना ने॥४॥

सभी योनियों में उत्तम योनि होने के घमंड को….

आज, ‘चूर-चूर’ कर दिया इस कोरोना ने॥५॥

अपशब्द बोलने वाले व्यक्तियों के मुख को मानो…..

आज, ‘सी’ दिया इस कोरोना ने॥६॥

वायु को दूषित करने वाले इंसानों की नाक को…..

आज, ‘आवृत’ कर दिया इस कोरोना ने॥७॥

नदियों को मलिन करने वाले मनुष्यों को…..

आज, ‘पावन निर्मलता से दूर’ कर दिया इस करोना ने॥८॥

आकाश को धूमिल करने वालों के……

आज, ‘वाहनों और कारखानों को बंद’ करवा दिया इस कोरोना ने॥९॥

मां पृथ्वी को थूक कर गंदा करने वाले इंसान को…..

आज, ‘थूक’ से ही डरा दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१०॥

खोद-खोद कर पृथ्वी को चोट पहुंचा रहे मनुष्यों को…..

आज, ‘पृथ्वी की शोभनीयता से दूर’ कर दिया इस कोरोना ने॥११।

अपनों से दूर भाग रहे लोगों को…..

आज, ‘अपनों के क़रीब’ ला दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१२॥

‘Social-Networking’ करने वालों को…..

आज, ‘Social-Distancing का पाठ’ पढ़ा दिया इस कोरोना ने ॥१३॥

बाज़ार की गिरावट, मज़दूरों के मनोबल की ताकत, हुनर की पेशकश, ज़ायके की बहार…. ऐसी अनदेखी-अनसुनी कहानियों को….

आज, ‘सुना’ दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१४॥

मेल-जोल की इस दुनिया को…..

आज, ‘Virtual’ बना दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१५॥

चिकित्सकों – पुलिसकर्मियों – सफाई कर्त्ताओं को ‘Corona-Warriors’ तथा अध्यापकों को ‘Lockdown-Heros’….

आज, बना दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१६॥

महत्वाकांक्षाओं के पीछे भाग रहे इंसानों को…..

आज, ‘सांसारिक वस्तुओं की अस्थिरता’ को समझा दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१७॥

ईश्वर की खोज में निकलने वालों को…..

आज, ‘श्रद्धालुओं के दिलों में ईश्वर का वास’ दिखा दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१८॥

चीन से इटली, इटली से स्पेन, स्पेन से ब्राज़ील, ब्राज़ील से अमेरिका, अमेरिका से भारत और इस तरह कई शहर कई गांव घूमकर…..

बिना मतदान के आज, ‘चुनाव-जीतकर’ दिखा दिया इस कोरोना ने॥१९॥

प्राकृत्तिक आपदा कहें या मानवीय त्रुटि पर सच तो यह है…..

आज, सबको ‘उलझा दिया’ इस कोरोना ने…….’उलझा दिया’ इस कोरोना ने॥२०॥

Dr. Aparna (Dhir) Khandelwal, Assistant Professor, School of Indic Studies, INADS, Dartmouth

Vedic Shield against Visible and Invisible Organisms

Dr. Raghava S. Boddupalli

Introduction

Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses, including some that cause the common cold to some that cause major diseases such as the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). In December 2019, the pandemic outbreak of a novel ‘Coronavirus disease’ (COVID-2019), later termed as SARS-CoV-2, is potentially fatal and a highly contagious disease. Given that in absence of a definitive COVID-19 treatment and the presence of asymptomatic carriers, the conventional intervention measures to curb the rate of infection and deaths are highly challenging. This novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans. Respiratory involvement, presenting as mild flu like illness to potentially lethal acute respiratory distress syndrome or fulminant pneumonia resembling that of SARS-CoV is the dominant clinical manifestation of COVID-19. Like other respiratory tract infections, pre-existing comorbidities are reported to enhance vulnerability to COVID-19 patients. Although the pathophysiology of SARS-CoV-2  is not  well  studied  yet,  existing  evidences  suggest likely  resemblances  to  other  SARS-CoVs’ infection; the  acute  lung  injury  resulting  from  aggressive  inflammation  triggered  by  viral replication. People with compromised immune systems, the very old and young and those with diagnosed heart and lung conditions are most at risk of developing complications if they contract an infection like this. While currently there is no cure for this, we can work with our mind and body through natural remedies to greatly strengthen our immune system. If our immune system is strong, then we can fight and prevent any infection.

Homa oblations to control bacterial and fungal pathogens 

According to Vedic scholars, the combination of the powerful energy of the fire and the Vedic mantras/liturgy creates extremely auspicious and purifying vibrations that are beneficial to the people attending yajña or hōma. The homa-ājya that is used in the yajñas is made only from the cow’s milk. Research reports indicate that the cow-ghee contains many essential nutrients, anti-oxidants and saturated fatty acids. These reports provided experimental evidence that the cow-ghee is having anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. The practice of Agnihotra and placing havan (fire offerings) purifies the house and the outside environment. A scientific report states that homa is an effective method to reduce the fungal spores load in small office or room. As per the experiments conducted, the homa fire smoke has the potency to kill fungal spores. In another study, it is experimentally shown that the medicinal smoke emanated by burning wood (samidha) and a mixture of odoriferous and medicinal herbs has the ability to effectively reduce pathogenic bacteria in the air. Another report conceptualizes the principle of Agnihotra yajña as having potent pharmacological action. The anti-viral property of the homa needs to be experimented and tested.

Microorganisms in Vedas

The word krimi occurs in the Vedas for different macroscopic and microscopic creatures. Right from germs like bacteria, viruses and others, various insects like kīṭa, pataṃga are referred as krimi. There are two types of krimis viz., dṛṣta (visible / macroscopic) and adṛṣta (invisible / microscopic) were described in Atharvaveda (AV) as an entire hymn [5-5-23].

yō akṣyau parisarpati yō nāsē parisarpati

datāṃ yō madhyaṃ gacchati taṃ krimiṃ jaṃbhayāmasmi

AV 5-5-23(3)

नेत्रों में घूमने वाले, नाक के नथुने में घूमने वाले तथा दाँत में रहने वाले कृमियों को हम नष्ट करते हैं।

utpurastātsūrya ēti viśvadṛṣṭō adṛṣṭahā

dṛṣṭāṃśca dnannadṛṣṭāṃśca sarvāśca pramṛṇākrimīn

AV 5-5-23(6)

सब प्राणियों के लिए दर्शनीय सूर्य अदृश्य कीटों को नष्ट करते हैं। वे दृश्य, अदृश्य सब प्रकाश के कृमियों को मारते हुए पूर्व से उदय हो रहे हैं।

We pray that both the worms (krimi) that we can see, and that we see not, be destroyed. These two categories encompass nearly all krimi (microbes / pathogens). According to their origin and habitat they are categorized as praṇyaśrayī and anyasthānaśrayī. Different śārīrika, mānasika and ādhyātmika vyādhis were thought to be originated from these krimis. These harmful and debilitating (puṣtināṣaka) organisms are recognized by various names based on troubles/sufferings they produce. Sun and fire (agni) were described as internal source of treatment (krimi cikitsa). Today, science also confirms these facts that early morning ultraviolet light rays emanating from sun can be used for various krimijanya-vyādhis. Apart from this, various treatment modalities by using various natural resources, herbal drugs, mineral drugs, fumigation, cleansing (mārjan-prōkṣaṇa) and hymns are described for krimi and diseases caused by them in Yajurveda and Atharvaveda.

Prayer to Soma (god of medicinal herbs), Rudra (primordial doctor) and other deities

sōmārudrā vi vṛhataṃ viṣūcīmamīvā yā nō gayamāvivēśa

ārē bādhēthāṃ nirṛtiṃ parācaiḥ kṛtaṃ cidēnaḥ pra mumuktamasmat

Yajurveda [TS 1-8-22(22)

Oh Soma (god of medicinal herbs) and Rudra! Enter our homes and eradicate morbidity. Drive away and trouble the unfavorable disease from afar. You will remove from us the sin (which is in the form of disease) that is stuck to our bodies.

adhyavōcadadhivaktā prathamō daivyō bhiṣak

ahīgśca sarvāṅjaṃbhayaṃthsarvāśca  yātudhānyaḥ

Yajurveda [TS 4-5-1(2), MS 16-5]

The first anuvaka of Namakaṁ in Śrī Rudram is not only chanted for all-round development of the community as well as the well-being of the chanter, but will also provide protective shield (kavaca) against the visible and invisible enemies like virulent fevers, fatal disorders, absolution from evil stars and bad karma.

udgrābhaṃ ca nigrābhaṃ ca brahma dēvā avīvṛdhann

athā saptnāniṃdrāgnī mē viṣūcīnānvyasyatām

Yajurveda [TS 1-6-4]

Brahma and other devatas improved the two-fold nature (udgrābha and nigrābha) of the ladle, increasing its prosperity. Using this, Indra and Agni drove away and destroyed cholera.

Remedy for germs

atriṇā tvā krimē hanmikaṇvēna jamadaggnināviśvāvasōrbhrahmaṇā hataḥkriṃīṇāguṃ rājāapyēṣāgsthapatir hataḥ।  athō mātāthō pitāathō sthūrā athō kṣudrāḥathō kṛṣṇā athō śvētāḥathō āśātikā hataḥśvētābhi ssaha sarvē hataḥ

Taittirīya Āraṇyaka [TA] 4-36

O Germ! I kill you with the mantra revealed by the ṛṣis Atri, Kaṇva and Jamadagni. The leader of the germs was killed by the mantra revealed by Visvavasu, a Gandharva. The other germ leaders were also killed. The mother and father of the germs were destroyed. All types of germs – big and small, black and white were killed. Moreover, the germs in the bodies of animals like cows and horses were also killed. We offer the havis in the hōma, in the yajñaśāla. Similarly, through this mantra, we keep the enemies, in the tooth of Yama. We can listen to the crushing sound of the enemies, while they are killed.

yā vyāghraṃ viṣūcikāubhauvṛkaṃcarakṣatiśyēnaṃ patatriṇaguṃ siguṃhamsēmaṃ pātvagumhasaḥ

Taittirīya Brāhmaṇa [TB] 2-6-1(5)

व्याधियों को दूर करने वाली विषूचिका यजमान की उसी प्रकार रक्षा करें जिस प्रकार व्याघ्र, वृक, सिंह और पक्षी को जरण दोष नहीं होता।

This mantra implores the deity of cholera, viṣūcikā, to protect the sacrificer from distress in the same way that the tiger, wolf, winged hawk and the lion are protected or spared.

Prayer to Vayu and Prajapati

vātaṃ prāṇaṃ manasānvārabhāmahēprajāpatiṃ yō bhuvanasya gōpāḥsanōmṛtyōstrāyatāṃ pātvaguṃhasaḥjyōgjīvā jarāmaśīmahi

TB 3-7-7(2)

प्राण रूपी वायु और प्रजापति जो इस भुवन के स्वामी है। वे हमारे मन से मृत्यु के भय को हटाये। हम चिरकाल तक जीवन जीये अर्थात् वृद्धावस्था तक ।

It is a prayer for vāyu (custodian of vital air – prāṇaṃ) and Prajāpati, who is the creator and protector of the universe (bhuvanās) – heaven, earth, and hell – (bhuvanasya gōpāḥ) and the people living in them. They relieve us from the attack of mṛtyu (dangers and untimely unhappy occurences) as well as from the sins (aguṃhasaḥ). These may be carried on by the jīva even to the next birth. We have to mark the definite hope expressed in the expression: ‘jyogjīvā jarāmaśīmahi’. This desire is also mentioned as prayer to Sun God in Śaura sūkta. As there are many uncertainties in one’s life, there no guarantee in reaching old age. From birth to death, many mayantarayas (mṛtyu) occur. Hence, they need to be curbed periodically. When this mantra is performed as japa, surely the deities under prayer shall focus this care on the devotees. They promote health and save us from death and distress (Prabhakar, C.L., Veda Nada Sarit, 27(228), April 2020).  

Cure for respiratory diseases

jarāyuja prathama usriyā vṛṣā vātābhrajā stanayannēti vṛṣṭyā

    sanō mṛḍāti tanvaṛujugō rujan ya ēkamōjastrēdhā vicakramē

AV 1-3-12(1)

जरायु से उत्पन्न जगत् से पूर्व सृष्टि में सबसे प्रथम उत्पन्न वायु के समान शीघ्रगामी और अनंत बल संपन्न सूर्य मेघों  को गर्जाते हुए वर्षा के साथ आते हैं। वे सूर्य हमें त्रिदोष जनित रोगों से मुक्त कर। वे सीधे चलने वाले सूर्य जो एक होकर भी तीन प्रकार से प्रकाशित होते हैं, हमारे शरीर को सुख दें।

We pray the Sun, who shines strong even through the heavy clouds and rain, and provide comfort to our body by curing many diseases.

añgē añgē śōciṣā śriśriyāṇaṃ namasyaṃta stvā haviṣā vidhēmal

      añkāṃtsamañkān haviṣā vidhēma yō agrabhīt parvāsyā grabhītā

AV 1-3-12(2)

प्रत्येक अवयवों में अपनी दीप्ति रूप से व्याप्त हे सूर्य! हम स्तुति, हवि आदि से आपको पूजते हैं। आपके समीपवर्ती देवताओं को भी हवि द्वारा सेवा करते हैं। रोगों से ग्रसित इस पुरुष की रोग निवृत्ति के लिए हम आपको पूजते हैं।

In this mantra, salutations are offered to the Sun, who pervades in full brilliance in all creatures. Oblations are offered to the Sun, His followers and other deities to cure us all from the virulent diseases and viral fevers which affect our body.

Remedy through Cow-Urine

idamidvā u bhēṣajamidaṃ rudrasya bhēṣajam|

      yēnēṣumēkatējanāṃ śataślyāmapabravat

AV 6-12-57(1)

इस रोग को दूर करने वाली औषधि को मैं करूंगा यह रुद्र की औषधि अंत काल में सबको रुलाती है। इसका शिव ने प्रयोग किया था।

To cure wrana i.e., all diseases the medicines made available by Rudra are indeed the only cures. According to Monier Williams, wrana stands for wound, sore, ulcer, abscess, tumors, cancer, boil, scar, cicatrix, cracks etc.

jālāṣēṇābhi ṣiñcata jālāṣēṇōpa siñcatal

      jālāṣamugraṃ bhēṣajaṃ tēna nō mṛḍa gīvasē

AV 6-12-57(2)

हे परिचारको! तुम गोमूत्र के फेन जल से घाव को धोओ, यह रोग को दूर करने में श्रेष्ठ है। हे रुद्र! इस औषधि से हमको सुख दो।

The body parts affected by disease and nearest to the disease parts should be thoroughly washed with the mixture of cow urine (gō-mutra) and activated water. This is the most potent remedy blessed by Rudra for giving healthy life to us for the treatment of these diseases.

saṃ ca nō mayaśca nō mā ca naḥ kiṃ canāmamatl                    

        kṣmā rapō viśvaṃ nō astu bhēṣajaṃ sarvaṃ nō astu bhēṣajam

AV 6-12-57(3)

हे देव! हमको सुख मिले हमारे पशु-मनुष्य रोग-ग्रस्त न हों और पाप का नाश हो। संपूर्ण विश्व और उनके श्रेष्ठ कर्म हमारे लिए औषधि के समान हों।

Let there be health for us, peace for us, pleasure for us, let nothing cause injury and harm to us, let all diseases be banished, let all the objects in this world be promoters of our health.

The above mentioned three Atharvaveda mantras [11-13] describe how the urine of cow can be used in treating against unicellular amoeba-like organisms (Vedas call them creatures without mouths). Use of the cow urine is suggested as a mixture with vigorously stirred – foaming water – activated water, similar to the making of homeopathic and bio-dynamic preparations. Research reports indicate that the cow urine has antimicrobial activities and particularly on fugal pathogens. As of now, there is no published report with regard to the measures to fight the virus by using cow urine. It is time to investigate the effectiveness of cow urine against even the coronavirus.

Conclusions

It is unfortunate that now-a-days, humans are facing many diseases. The outbreak of coronavirus has been detected a few months ago. Ishvara being our real inspiration has given us the knowledge of four Vedas to destroy illusion and solve all kinds of problems, including those of medical science. Many fatal infections can be destroyed by performance of yajñas and yāgyās. When we obey the Vedic principles, diseases are either destroyed from its roots or do not even generate. Vedic mantras state that agnihotra purifies food grains, water, and bestows mental and physical strength so that people can enjoy prosperous life. Veda mantras have the ability to drive away the health hazards and sādhana is important for siddhi

Dr. Raghava S. Boddupalli, Institute of Sanskrit and Vedic Studies (ISVS)

COVID-19 Induced Distress and Its Management through Vedic Sciences

Brig JS Rajpurohit, Ph.D.

Stress is a universal truth that afflicts one and all. Every living being; reptiles, birds or animals; everyone goes through pangs of stress. In case of reptiles and animals, stress is for the most basic necessities for their survival. Maslow’s Physiological and Security needs of hierarchy are primary needs of all and that includes humans as well. Reptiles and animals get anxious and go into stress whenever their survival is at stake i.e. whenever their requirement of food, safety and progenies are threatened, they will either submit to more powerful or fight with the competitor. Animals including human beings are affected by emotions for their family & friends and that is one of the major causes of stress. 

Whenever under pressure individuals perform and achieve targets and objectives, it is called Eustress and when one is unable to manage himself, unable to achieve targets and feels that he cannot fight it out, he resorts to running away from the situation. Soon he gets into severe depression followed by stress called Distress.

Covid-19 is a very unique situation the world is witnessing in first half of 2020 and it may prolong for longer duration. Today, survival of humans as a race is threatened and like all other animals, man is also prone to distress. Esteem and Self-actualization are appearing distant and difficult to achieve. Respect, recognition and feeling of accomplishment is essential part of human life is finding back seat when people are contracting Covid-19 in hundreds every day. Death of loved ones has stressed them out and it is affecting all countries, races, caste, creed and colour across the planet. Governments all over are attempting to find remedies to the deadly disease. Physical social distancing, isolation, lockdown and quarantine have been found to be reasonable means to prevent spread of the disease.

Type of job, place of work, indoor or outdoor etc. does not matter, he/she needs that space and recognition in one’s life. In the situation that we all are in today during Covid-19 crisis, both boredom and anxiety are affecting all of us and getting locked into house aggravates the status.

Lockdown was ordered across India on 25th March 2020; no one is permitted to move out and all offices have been closed down. Work from home is the new norm where there are no work place friends to share intimacies. Zoom conferences are formal digital spaces where intimacies and informal discussions are not possible. There is limited space in house in urban colonies to move around, limited number of people to interact with and limited time-consuming activity to fill the time gap. There are very limited number of people in the home with whom one can interact and share feelings. Even if there is a standard family of four with aged parents in the house, inter-personal relational issues amongst the members is a reality; ghar-ghar ki kahani is the order of the day (pun intended). Consequently, it is difficult to share one’s inner feeling with relations at home. At times, it is observed that sharing and caring with spouses are formal and dutiful relations. Very limited interaction takes place with aged parents and conversations are limited. Majority time is spent on mobile, television and computers and still lot of time is available where all sessions of Time Management seem ineffective. Since 25th March 2020, Entire India is going through this phase with intermittent speeches by PM Mr. Narendra Modi and respective state CMs and other dignitaries of the government. All efforts are made to keep the population aware of the latest situation and providing all possible help for safety.

However, stress is coming up as the next issue with stay indoors regulations. All efforts by the government and other agencies, there is limited positive impact and social relational structure is affected adversely.

Euronews has reported increased cases of domestic violence and divorces in France since lockdown was imposed in the country. Tablighi Jamaat has continued its central prayers and congregations despite lockdown and orders from the government. Nefarious elements have continued to assault police and medical and health workers. People connecting up with psychiatrists and psychologists has gone up since the lockdown has been affected. Who would not go crazy in such a sensitive environment where disease and death hangs all over?

Management way of looking at Stress

Over a period of time, both boredom and anxiety are visible in society. India Electronic Media is all full of shows to help us all overcome the isolation and attempts to bring smiles on our faces. Boredom on account of limited activity and anxiety on account of increasing number of infections and deaths due to the deadly disease. The reality of impact of Covid-19 is giving no respite; whopping 2,18,386 deaths have been reported so far as on 29th April, 2020 and end is nowhere in sight. India has suffered 1007 deaths.

More and more cluster is cropping every day and more and more teams are ushered into service of mankind. This is biggest humanitarian assistance ever organized in the history. Economic slump, china hiding the facts and President Trump threatening China of dire consequences is further adding fuel to the fore of increasing stress levels amongst all sections of society. Anxiety, depression and stress are natural outcomes that are of bound to impact most of us.

Management of Covid-19 Induced Stress

Covid-19 has been studied by experts and they opine that prevention is better than cure. Means to handle the disease are in three stages: –

  • Stage 1- Prevent contracting the disease by staying at home and not coming out in public.
  • Stage 2. Isolate and quarantine at home for those infected.
  • Stage 3. Medical treatment at designated hospitals for serious cases.

Stress in all stages of treatment may show some or more of following symptoms: –

  • Boredom, anxiety, fatigued and wear out
  • Lack of involvement and loss of interest in usual enjoyable activities
  • Physical symptoms like high blood pressure, indigestion and uneasiness
  • Short temper and anger
  • Mood swings
  • Insomnia
  • Fear of unknown- fear of getting infected and if infected; fear of death.

Stress is outcome of psychological, biological and personality traits. Ability to handle mounting isolation and hopeless situation will decide if one will get into depression and stress. In order to come out of stress, we have to understand the corona virus and Covid-19 disease, its symptoms and how best we all can save people by efforts of individuals, elders in the family and following instructions given by the government from time to time. Some of the common measures are: –

  • Organise the day. Start the day with morning physical exercises at home, call it one mat exercises.  Limitation of space has to be taken into account and exercise for minimum of 30 minutes daily. Thereafter divide the individual and family time plan.
  • Plan and follow time table. It may include daily office chores, house hold jobs and hobbies. Family work plan will bring in variety and motivation to overcome boredom.
  • Set Objectives. Weekly/fortnightly or monthly objectives be planned for seeking satisfaction and constructive use of time.
  • Complement each other more often, laugh more than yesterday and find reasons to stay positive.
  • Be passionate about life with simple rule- This too shall pass.

Indian Vedic Sciences and Stress Management

The fact that covid-19 is likely to affect many of us and its impact worldwide is disastrous; can be considered from the Vedic perspective as well.  Indian Vedic sciences is ocean of knowledge on stress management; only a fraction is discussed here.

Breath is basic parameter of stress; it exists in our breath and if you are able to control your own breath, stress can be identified and remedial yogic and breathing exercises can be practised to overcome the same. Fear of Covid -19 infection or death is likely to change breath pattern, it will become fast, heavy and compulsive indicating higher stress levels. Thoughts of fear and death release certain stress causing toxins in human body that can be consumed by various yogic asanas and pranayama. Chanting of Oṃ (ॐ) and Prāṇāyāma like anulom-vilom and bhrāmari will help in normalising blood pressure, mitigate toxins and give a soothing feeling.

Knowledge of Triguṇas  i.e. Sattva, Rajas and Tamas can help change own prakṛti from tāmsic to sāttvic. There is a predominant Guṇa in each one of us and the Guṇas change with the time of the day, kind of activities, and thought process.  Every time there is a thought of fear or death or isolation, they reflect one getting into Tamas or stress due to negative thoughts and belief. That will result into change in behaviour of person, severe depression and stress. One has to act immediately to come out of Tamas and enter the state of Rajas. The activity will use the toxins of the body and one starts feeling better and will now think of better days in times to come. The process will take one from Rajas to state of Sattva where ultimate relief from stress is felt. It is easier said than done but support of friends and family members can take one out of depression or the stress.

‘Stay home stay happy’ is the soul’s answer to stress management. Primarily, if we are able to consume the enzymes released in the body due to psycho-social conditions created in the Covid-19 rich environment, we shall be able to convert distress into eustress. Gainful use of time available is the call we need to take and shall be able to not only save ourselves and family members but also will be able to enjoy the time of togetherness gifted by the God Almighty.

Brig JS Rajpurohit, Ph.D. Group Commander, Group HQ NCC, Gorakhpur (UP)

‘कोरोना-अभिशाप’ : प्रकृति के लिए वरदान!

डा. अपर्णा (धीर) खण्डेलवाल

हमारे जीवन को सरल बनाने वाले औद्योगिकरणों एवं वैज्ञानिक सफलताओं ने कहीं न कहीं हमें प्रकृति से कोसों दूर कर दिया। आज हम हरे-भरे उद्यानों की छाया एवं मनोरम छवि, नदियों की तरंगपूर्ण शीतल लहरों की  कल्कलाहट, शुद्ध वायु, सूर्य की निर्मल पहली किरण से जगमगाते हुए आसमान की लालिमा, पक्षियों की चहचहाहट, भ्रमरों का गुंजन, तित्लियों के रंग-बिरंगे पंखों का फैलाव, फूलों की सुगन्ध, चांदनी रातें, टिमटिमाते हुए तारे आदि प्राकृतिक अनुभूतियों को छोड़ अत्यन्त व्यस्त जीवन जी रहे थे। इस जीवन में न तो प्रकृति के लिए समय था, न ही परिवार के लिए। समय था तो केवल चुनौतियों से भरे हुए अहंकार-पूर्ण जीवन के लिए। इन चुनौतियों को पूरा करने और लौकिक सुखों के उद्देश्य में मानव यह भूल गया कि वह अपनी लापरवाही से प्रकृति का अनजाने में कितना दोहन प्रतिदिन प्रतिक्षण किए ही जा रहा है। जिसके परिणाम स्वरूप आज हरियाली खत्म होती जा रही है, वायु में सांस नहीं लिया जा रहा, नदियों का जल पय नहीं रहा, अत्याधिक वर्षा भूस्खलन का कारण बन गई इत्यादि। इन्हीं सब चिन्ताओं से आज हमारे शरीर रोगग्रस्त हो रहे हैं।

2020 के दस्तक देने से पूर्व ही ‘कोरोना’ विश्वपटल पर धीरे-धीरे चुपके-चुपके पैर पसार रहा था। पहले चीन फिर यूरोपीय देश फिर समस्त विश्व का सिकंदर बना अमेरिका इसकी चपेट में आते जा रहे थे….. और फिर बारी आई अपने भारत की। अत्यन्त घातक यह ’कोरोना’ समस्त विश्व में कोहराम मचाकर लाखों की संख्या में मानव जाति को पीड़ित कर रहा है। यह स्थिति कहलाई जा रही है ’कोरोना-महामारी’। इस स्थिति पर नियंत्रण पाने के लिए अथवा उसके संक्रमण से सम्पूर्ण मानव-जाति को बचाने के लिए…….सभी देशों में धीरे-धीरे सम्पूर्ण बंद (lockdown) की स्थिति आ गई। देखते ही देखते देश-विदेश के समस्त बड़े-बड़े उद्योग, यातायात के साधन, लोक-व्यवहार, बाज़ार, उत्पादन, खरीद-बिक्री एक के बाद एक बंद होते चले गए। कोई इसे प्राकृतिक-आपदा कहने लगा तो कोई मानवीय त्रुटि। किसी का भी ध्यान प्रकृति के कायाकल्प की ओर नहीं जा रहा। सब ओर हाहाकार ही सुनाई पड़ता रहा। अगर हम ऐसा मान लें कि शायद प्रकृति हमारी व्यावहारिक ज़िन्दगी से थकने के कारण थोड़ा विराम लेना चाहती थी……तो शायद ’कोरोना-महामारी’ सहज लगने लगे।

वास्तव में प्रकृति केवल वही नहीं जो सम्पूर्ण ब्रह्माण्ड के चारों ओर आच्छादित है, जिसे हम ‘पर्यावरण’ के नाम से जानते हैं अपितु प्रकृति के दोनों रूप हमें जानने चाहिए – बाह्य प्रकृति और आन्तरिक प्रकृति। बाह्य प्रकृति में समुद्र-नदियाँ, पर्वत, वृक्ष-पौधे, वायु आते हैं। आन्तरिक प्रकृति में हमारे विचार आते हैं। दोनों प्रकृतियों को सहेज के रखना ही हमारा कर्तव्य है, तभी प्रकृति और हमारा आपसी संतुलन बना रहता है।

बाह्य प्रकृति –

प्रकृति के साथ सम्बन्ध की अनुभूति ही सिद्ध करती है, हमारा प्रकृति के प्रति स्वभाव। प्रकृति और मानव जीवन का सामञ्जस्य एवं संतुलन ही पर्यावरण का संरक्षण कहलाता है। इसका सबसे बड़ा उदाहरण अथर्ववेद (12.1.12) का मंत्र है-

माता भूमिः पुत्रोऽहं पृथिव्याः।

भूमि मेरी माता है और मैं भूमि का पुत्र (संतान) हूँ।

जब हम सम्पूर्ण पृथ्वी की ही कल्पना अपनी माँ के रूप में कर लेते हैं तो कभी भी पृथ्वी के अंगभूत उसके वृक्ष, नदियाँ, वायु, पर्वत आदि को प्रदूषित नहीं करते और उनके प्रति स्नेहमयी दृष्टि रखते हैं।

‘कोरोना-महामारी’ से पूर्व खानों की खुदाई; तेल, कोयले, लकड़ी जैसे ईंधनों की खपत, समुद्री जीव-जन्तुओं का जीवन, जंगलों की कटाई, दूषित नदियाँ, मांसाहार आदि प्रदूषण पर्यावरणविदों की गम्भीर चिन्ता के विषय थे। विश्व स्वास्थ्य संगठन जैसी संस्थाएँ प्रतिदिन प्रदूषण से होने वाली अनेक प्रकार की व्याधियों के रोकथाम एवं जागरूकता के लिए नए-नए चिकित्सीय दिशा-निर्देशों को निर्दिष्ट करता रहता था। 

अभिशाप बनकर आये इस ’कोरोना-काल’ में अर्थशास्त्री बाज़ार के उतार-चढ़ाव देखते रहे परन्तु चिरकाल से चोट खाई इस प्रकृति ने समस्त हानिकारक प्रदूषको में भारी गिरावट कर खुद को ही नया सा कर लिया।

नमामि गंगे’, ‘स्वच्छ वायु परियोजना’  एवं स्वच्छ भारत अभियान’  जैसी योजनाओं के चलने से भी जहाँ असर नहीं आ रहा था, वहीं इस ‘कोरोना-अभिशाप’ की गोद में छिपा था साफ आसमान, साफ नदियाँ, स्वच्छ वायु का वरदान (https://www.ndtv.com/news/view/ndtv/2216600/site=classic/?device=androidv2&showads=no)। कहने में अतिशयोक्ति न होगी कि ’कोरोना’ ने मानव को प्रकृति की नूतन छवि के दर्शन करा उनके परस्पर सम्बन्ध को और अधिक क़रीबी बनाया।

आन्तरिक प्रकृति –

व्यक्ति के सोच-विचार ही उसकी आन्तरिक प्रकृति की नींव है। मनुष्य के विचारों से ही उसका स्वभाव बनता है इसीलिए ‘कोरोना-काल’ में स्वयं को तनाव मुक्त करने के लिए तथा सद्विचार हेतु ‘ताली’ और ‘थाली’ की गूँज के साथ दियों की जगमगाहट दिखाई दी। वैदिक मंत्र ‘तन्मे मनः शिवसंकल्पमस्तु’ (वाजसनेयी संहिता 34) का सकारात्मक दृष्टिकोण भारत के प्रधानमंत्री जी ने कुछ इस प्रकार प्रकट किया-

शुभं करोति कल्याणमारोग्यं धनसंपदा।

शत्रुबुद्धिविनाशाय दीपज्योतिर्नमोऽस्तुते॥

यही दर्शाता है कि ‘कोरोना’ को संकट नहीं अपितु उस अंधकार के रूप में माना गया है जिसके बाद सवेरा निश्चित है- ‘तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमय। मृत्योर्मा अमृतं गमय’ (बृहदारण्यक उपनिषद् 1.3.28)। वैदिक विचारधारा से ओत-प्रोत भारत आपद-काल में यही सकारात्मक संदेश समस्त विश्व तक पहुंचा रहा है।

संगठित समाज और संयुक्त-परिवार-व्यवस्था ही वसुधैव कुटुम्बकम् की नींव है। भारतीय सामाजिक व्यवस्था प्रारम्भ से ही इसकी सराहना करती है। वर्तमान ‘कोरोना-संक्रमण-काल’ के कारण सम्पूर्ण विश्व में चल रहे बंद (lockdown) ने समस्त विश्व को सामाजिक एकता एवं पारिवारिक सम्बन्धों में परस्पर सामंजस्य का पाठ पढ़ाया है। तनावपूर्ण वातावरण में परस्पर सौहार्द ही मानसिक बल प्रदान करता है, जिससे आत्मघाती अवसादों को नियंत्रित किया जा सकता है।

स्वयं को पहचानना अर्थात् अपनी क्षमताओं और कमज़ोरियों का ज्ञान परमावश्यक है। आज हम कहीं न कहीं आत्म-मूल्यांकन भूल चुके हैं। इस ‘कोरोना-संकट’ ने हम सभी को भागदौड़ से हटाकर ’स्वाध्याय’ के लिए प्रेरित किया है-

स्वाध्यायान्मा प्रमदः’ (तैत्तिरीय उपनिषद् 1.11.1)

सांसारिक क्रियाकलापों से परे आत्म-निहित साधना ही हमें योग और ध्यान की ओर ले जाती है- असंशयं महाबाहो मनो दुर्निग्रहं……वैराग्येण च गॄह्यते’ (गीता 6.35) | इस आपत्ति-काल ने ‘आत्मानुशासन’ भी सिखा दिया।

इस प्रकार ‘कोरोना’ ने बाह्य और आन्तरिक दोनों ही प्रकृतियों में नूतनता के दर्शन कराये हैं। ऐसा लगता है कि ‘कोरोना-काल’ के बाद विश्व में कई बदलाव दिखेंगे, यथा- पारिवारिक-सम्बन्धों में, पर्यावरण-संरक्षण के प्रति, आत्म-विश्लेषण में, तथा सकारात्मक ऊर्जा के रूप में।

हम जीवन के प्रति उदासीन हो रहे हैं पर

प्रकृति स्वयं को हमारे लिए पुनर्जीवित कर रही है……….

Dr. Aparna (Dhir) Khandelwal, Assistant Professor, School of Indic Studies, INADS, Dartmouth