Message of Indrasabha

In a vast and diverse country like America , I felt the necessity of spreading the true meaning of the Hindu religion. Several difficult and sometimes unanswerable questions have been raised in my spiritual classes. Several college students ask thought-provoking questions. I try and answer a lot of the queries of these young minds with the grace of my Guruji and the Supreme Lord. Some youngsters raised the following issues:” our western friends and colleagues questions us about the extravagant and luxurious courts of the Devtas depicted in television programs. The Devtas are seen drinking and indulging in various mundane pleasures. We are confused about how to explain this to our friends. Should we respect these Gods or feel ashamed of their opulent depiction?” It is certainly true that numerous people today represent their religion in language that may be pleasing to the ears, but is poisonous for the true seeker of knowledge.

All the efforts of saints and seers from past ages, who worked ceaselessly to acquire vast realms of spiritual knowledge, seem to go in vain when these views are presented in flowery language with little of the original meaning contained in it. It is also quite unfortunate that India, which has been the torch bearer of spiritual thinking as well as advances in science and other knowledge, is today under a dark cloud as far as the true understanding of Hindu philosophy is concerned. It is incumbent upon Hindu religious leaders to revive the sacred knowledge of our scriptures and protect our religion from disaster. I have taken a vow that I will strive to remove the darkness of ignorance that surrounds so many Hindus. God has given me the opportunity to do so. I endeavor to answer several questions in my daily classes with my congregation in the temple. I am writing this particular article on Indra and Indrasabha to reach out to all those who cannot physically come and attend my classes. I will try and explain the symbolism of all the Davtas in relation to the human mind and body, and also emphasize how these legends convey great lessons to us.

You must all be aware of the stories associated with Indra Dev and his royal court which contains beautiful Apsaras (nymphs) namely Urvashi, Menaka, Rambha etc. The Gods of Fire, Wind and Water inhabit Indra Dev’s courts and delicious food is offered all the time. That is why his court is called the Heaven (swarag lok). The stories that abound about this court hold a deep meaning. If you try and understand the message behind this great philosophy, you will be proud to call yourself a Hindu. It is because of the messages contained in these stories and with the assistance of our rishis, saints and seers that the whole Universe is running smoothly.

In Indra Dev’s court, the Devtas and their companions partake in all the possible heavenly and sensual pleasures. As they remain engrossed in their indulgences, the Asuras or Demons wait for the moment when they can take advantage of careless moments and take over the Swarag Lok. The Devtas run to Lords Shiva, Vishnu and Brahma and ask for their kind benevolence and seek guidance in winning back their heavenly abode. The Gods send them to the exalted souls of Rishis and Munis who can reinforce their lost powers and help them to regain their strength to defeat their invaders. Once you understand the deeper meaning of these “Puranic Kathas”, you can only feel proud to be part of the great Sanatan Hindu Dharma and can confidently answer all questions associated with it. The story of Indra Sabha is in reality the story of your own mind and body. All your sense organs—eyes, nose, ears, tongue etc, and their related sensory powers are the Devtas. Your heart is the Indra Dev. The fragrant wind, sweet sound of music, and taste are the needs of the sense organs. When you eat delicious food or consume wonderful drink, see beautiful people or places, you wish to prolong the experience forever. So in the Indra Sabha of your body, Indrias or sense organs (Devtas) are intoxicated in the pleasures of their desires, with the heart and mind under their control. You are completely oblivious to what will happen. If this situation continues for a long time, the sense organs or Devas will become weak, lazy or careless. The heart of Indra Dev is unable to control them and this is the moment when diseases or demons find their way into your body. You lose all heavenly happiness (swarag sukh) and feel enormous pain. When this becomes unbearable, the heart asks the brain for help and is directed to doctors in the form of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. The God direct the brain to obtain the necessary medication from the Rishis and Munnis. The doctors or Rishis first get upset with you for being careless about your health and then provide the treatment for diseases such as Dhumar Letu (lung cancer), Raktabeej (blood cancer), Dhomrawchan (glaucoma). Demons are nothing else but diseases. All the Devtas are your own sense organs. The heart is Indra Dev, and your body when healthy is Swarag Lok but when diseased is Narak Lok (hell).