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Upavas And Nobel Prize

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by jayasala42, Jan 9, 2017.

  1. jayasala42

    jayasala42 Finest Post Winner

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    Yesterday was Vaikunta Ekadasi Day and there was opening
    of Swarga vasal in many popular Vaishnavite temples and the utsavam is celebrated for 20 long days in our native place Srirangam with wonderful recitation of naalaayira Divya Prabandam(4000 verses composed by 12 Azhwars in praise of Lord Narayana.) vaikunta Ekadasi comes in the middle of the festival. There are hundreds of articles about Ekadasi mahima and there are 24 ekadasis in a year.

    The title under reference is Ekadasi Upavasam and Nobel Prize.A strange Connection!

    They have recently announced Nobel Prize to a Japanese Scientist Dr.Yoshinori Ohsumi for his research on 'Autophagy'.
    Autophagy means 'to self eat'.That is a natural process by which the human body eats its own damaged cells and unused proteins.This is a process that takes place during starvation.The failure of autophagy is one of the main reasons for accumulation of degenerated cells eventually leading to multiple disorders.This natural process is significant in preventing/fighting terrific diseases like cancer as it has an essential role in degrading and consuming cells infected by viruses and bacteria.
    Ancient India recommended a practice of observing 'fast' once in a fortnight during Ekadasi.
    Many elders follow this practice as a pathway to salvation or Moksham without having the least idea of the biological process and therapeutic benefits.Youngsters just set aside these practices as based on blind belief and superstition.
    Actually fasting induces 'autophagy',enabling the system repair its damaged cells and use up the proteins thereof for survival.
    When we read the story of Ambarisha and Durvasa in Shrimat Bhagavatham, one is likely to think why so much of prominence is given to a fasting activity.
    But whenever modern science recognizes a particular field for success,it somehow relates to some quaint practice that
    is being followed in our country for thousands of years.

    While a day in a fortnight spent in prayer and meditation was a panacea for spiritual upliftment,it was a process of healing and rejuvenation of the system as a whole.
    Clearly our elders were able to connect ,quite remarkably,the yearning for spiritual progress as well as the biolological necessity of healing,recuperation and rejuvenation.
    Rites & Rituals explained in Vedas are basic foundation of understanding the reality of Truth in our day to day life. Anthropologists say that the rituals awaken the youth worthy and responsible members of society and to
    understand to work for common welfare of people.

    In India, we give importance only to mere rituals without
    explaining the scientific significance leading to phoo-phooing of the same under the pretext of senseless beliefs.

    While Japanese go deep into it and apply these values in
    their practical life. Sooner we learn this it is better for us.

    We bow our heads with deep admiration and reverence at
    the vedic wisdom and deep understanding of the physique and mind of our elders while regretting the present attitude of neglecting everything that emanated from ancient seers.
    Why can't we look beyond?

    Jayasala 42
     
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  2. girvani

    girvani Platinum IL'ite

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    Dear Jayasala amma. Happy new year to you.

    What an eye opener for the year. thank you very much and I learnt a new thing about Autophagy. When I was a kid , my mother introduces the fasting to us by telling us that we need to understand how the hungry people feel by fasting so that we will readily provide food for those who in need. Along with that, now I see we benefit ourselves by fasting. I am understanding that we eat way too much than necessary thus giving so much stress to our organs to process the accumulations. Thank you for this post.
    Vani
     
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  3. jayasala42

    jayasala42 Finest Post Winner

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    Thank you Girvani for your kind response.Perhaps the present day children should be educated on the scientific aspects of earlier traditions so that they may accept them easily.
    Jayasala 42
     
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  4. Balajee

    Balajee IL Hall of Fame

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    How much fasting is real fastng? I don't know anyone who starves during Ekadasi. They just avoid rice. (Here my mother found a loophole. If you roast your rice before boiling it then it is still considered fasting). In our house my mom used to make ghee loaded methi parathas for vaikuntha ekadasi and that was supposed to be fasting. In north, fasting during navratras simply means avoiding grains like rice and wheat. Instead they are substituted with water chestnut buckwheat and potato flour. Of course fasting turns into feasting with lots of ghee , sweets and fried (in ghee of course) foods. People put on more weight during fasts than during non-fast days.
     
  5. swathi27

    swathi27 Silver IL'ite

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    Very thought provoking post...The above research was done by the Japanese to secure a recognition for himself.

    Our elders have successfully scientifically relentlessly researched and wanted every individual to share the benefits of these findings. Isnt it worth a thousand noble peace prize....

    Unfortunately or fortunately they have concealed the true reasons and have linked it to what the common man wanted and dreaded.

    Its time that we Indians accept and appreciate our ancient rituals under the scientific light rather than just dismissing them out as supersitious or a dumb old myth.....

    I have recently been intrigued with yoga and pranayamas effects. Pleasantly surprised by the importance of the much ignored 'taken for granted' activity which is the foundation of our very existence. The breath.
    I am astounded by the effects of just '15 mts a day of breathing right'.
     
  6. jayasala42

    jayasala42 Finest Post Winner

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    Dear Balajee,
    It is true that people believed that an asura made the whole grains like wheat and rice his home ,on Ekadasi days and it was considered proper to use broken rice for Upma or make Dosa or idli out of grounded rice and dhal and chapathis made out of flour.
    I think more awareness has been felt now and people are prepared to go empty stomach at least once a month, though not on Ekadasi.
    Jayasala 42
     
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  7. jayasala42

    jayasala42 Finest Post Winner

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    Dear Swathi,

    Thank you for the response.Whether the research was conducted with the selfish motive of self recognition or not, the process has made at least a few to think in the right direction.
    As you say, previously children obeyed whatever the parents said without asking for reason.Had the elders told convincing reasons for the rituals, perhaps they would have been convinced .Yoga classes are becoming more popular in the West.We have a tendency to ignore whatever ancient Indians said with an eye of contempt and keep ourselves in readiness to accept the same if brought to light from West.

    Jayasala 42
     
  8. girvani

    girvani Platinum IL'ite

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    I agree Amma.
     
  9. Amica

    Amica IL Hall of Fame

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    So true! Many of our ancient practices have been found to be scientifically sound.
     
  10. PavithraS

    PavithraS Platinum IL'ite

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    Yes, Langanam Parama Oushadam (fasting is the best cure or medicine):)
     
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