“Now is described the discipline for inner purification by which self-knowledge is attained: When the food is pure, the mind becomes pure. When the mind is pure the memory [smriti–memory of our eternal spirit-Self] becomes firm. When the memory is firm all ties are loosened” (Chandogya Upanishad 7.26.2).
“On food rests everything—whatsoever breathes and whatsoever breathes not” (Brihadaranyaka Upanishad 1.5.1). “From food has arisen strength [virya], austerity [tapasya], mantra, action, and the world itself” (Prashna Upanishad 6.4).
“By food, indeed, do all the breaths [pranas, life forces] become great” (Taittiriya Upanishad 1.5.4). “Man, verily consists of the essence of food” (Taittiriya Upanishad 2.1.1). So we are what we eat.
“From food, verily, are produced all creatures–whatsoever dwell on earth. By food alone, furthermore, do they live.…From food all creatures are born: by food, when born, they grow.…Verily, different from this, which consists of the essence of food, but within it, is another self, which consists of the vital breath [prana]. By this the former is filled. This too has the shape of a man. Like the human shape of the former is the human shape of the latter” (Taittiriya Upanishad 2.2.1).
“On food rests everything—whatsoever breathes and whatsoever breathes not” (Brihadaranyaka Upanishad 1.5.1). The spiritual, astral body is drawn exclusively from food, so our food is crucial in our spiritual development.
- Food, when eaten, becomes threefold (16 parts): the grossest part becomes faeces (10 parts); the middle part flesh (5 parts) and its subtlest part mind (1 part).
- Water, when drunk, becomes threefold (16 parts): Its grossest part becomes urine (10 parts), its middle part blood (5 parts) and its subtlest part Prana (1 part).
- Fire (i.e., in oil, butter, etc.) when eaten becomes threefold (16 parts): its grossest part becomes bone (10 parts), its middle part marrow (5 parts) and its subtlest part speech (1 part). When food that is eaten is led away by water, there is hunger. When water that is drunk is led away by fire, there is thirst.
‘For truly, my child, mind comes of earth, breathe of water, speech of fire.’ ‘That which is the subtle portion of curds, when churned, rises upwards, and becomes butter. ‘In the same manner, my child, the subtle portion of earth (food), when eaten, rises upwards, and becomes the mind. That which is the subtle portion of water, when drunk, rises upwards, and becomes breath. That which is the subtle portion of fire, when consumed, rises upwards, and becomes speech.
For mind, my child, comes of earth, breath of water, speech of fire. His son Svetaketu already realizing his mistake, requests his father to tell him more and his father continues. Man (purusha), my son, consists of sixteen parts. Abstain from food for fifteen days, but drink as much water as you like, for breath comes from water, and you will not be cut off, if you drink water. Svetaketu abstained from food for fifteen days. Then he came to his father and said: ‘What shall I say?’ The father said: ‘Repeat the Rik, Yagus, and Saman verses.’ His son replied: ‘They do not occur to me, Sir.’ His father explains that your mind is weak and the recollection of your knowledge is difficult since you have not had food for 15 days. He asks his son to have food and realize that he can recollect his knowledge. The discussion continues this way in Chandogya Upanishad.
The traditional treatment for infertility in India even today is to give medicated cow ghee for the man of the family to eat it for 48 days. This is because semen is produced from Bone marrow as per Siddha / Ayurveda and quality of semen would improve when the good fat content (this is from Cow’s ghee) is increased in the intake.
Know thy Nature by Raguram Gopalan, http://ragsgopalan.blogspot.com
Why can we live without food for few weeks but we cannot manage without water more than few days?
We might have observed the types of food, taste and its impact on us as an individual and the society. As per ancient saying our mind gets 2 predominant inputs which keep us our mind alive. The 2 inputs for our mind are Food and Breath. In this article we would not focus on the impact on our mind based on the quality of food but we would focus on the interconnection between Food and Breath.
The following is an excerpt from Chandogya Upanishad, a discussion between Svetaketu Aruneya (the grandson of Aruna) and his father (Uddilaka, the son of Aruna). When Svetaketu returned to his father, at the age of twenty-four, having then studied all the Vedas, conceited himself to be well-read and stern. His father being a very wise man wanted to teach his son a lesson in humility and wanted to highlight that his self-conceit does not befit him.
So he starts by asking him, “Have you ever asked for that instruction by which we hear what cannot be heard, by which we perceive what cannot be perceived, by which we know what cannot be known?” When his son acknowledges his ignorance on this he starts explaining things from evolution.
He says that water is produced from fire and explains whenever anybody anywhere is hot and perspires, water is produced on him from fire alone. Water he says produces food (earth). Furthermore he says that Fire, Water and Earth are the basic elements which manifest themselves in all the loving beings.
The red colour of burning fire (Agni) is the colour of fire, the white colour of fire is the colour of water, the black colour of fire the colour of earth. Learned men knew that, Whatever they thought looked red, they knew was the colour of fire. Whatever they thought looked white, they knew was the colour of water. Whatever they thought looked black, they knew was the colour of earth. Whatever they thought was altogether unknown, they knew was some combination of those three beings.
We are not going see the entire conversation which is very interesting and can be read more from Internet or books. Tomorrow we will see the most interesting aspect of food and its manifestation.
Know thy Nature by Raguram Gopalan, http://ragsgopalan.blogspot.com
These are its beginnings, where even in its stillness it is not frozen but filled with the promise of its throbbing, where it then impels itself into a spin discharging particles of light from its luminous core in anticipation of the end product of a manifested outer form, as the birth of a now and later are born, bringing Time and limits into being. An intrinsic order is created as Moolam exercises control on its luminous particles. This vibrant energy flutters to this ceaseless rhythm and is compared to an eternal dance of love, the dance of all reality, the divine dance of Nataraja.
In love with its own beauty and pulsing itself to this divine dance it transforms itself into infinitely complex material forms. Our true happiness lies in the ability to savor our own individual beauty and perfection that pulsates with great luminosity from our own vibrant core. It tells us that we are a perfect manifestation of the ultimate Divine Love that sprung from its own desire to savor its own beauty in our living form. To know this brings one into resonance with that highest vibration of Love that vibrates us and everything into being.
~ Rosie O’Sullivan on “Cosmological View of Mamuni Mayan in His Mayonic Science”
The one which eyes of mind cannot see,
Can be seen through the divine light with-in us;
The one which ears of mind cannot hear,
Can be heard through listening to our heart;
The one which senses of mind cannot reach,
Can be reached through resting our senses of mind;
The one which cannot be understood by mind,
Can be understood through surrendering our mind;
Just be in the moment, being in moment become That!