Narach Philosophy

THE GODS OF THE VEDAS: MARUTS


The Maruts occupy an important place among the minor Vedic deities. According to our letter analysis the word Marut may be resolved into M (a), r, u, t, and would mean, Mind energy (r) in association with Purushic (ma) and (u) Prakrtic Ether (t) and we see that the idea of the word is indicated by the line of its name, extending from r, assigned to the region of Mind, to t in the region of Prakrtic Ether.

Maruts and Ether: Inasmuch as Maruts refer to the twofold character of Ether in association with the Mind, they are called the sons of Dyaus, the children of Rudra and Prisni, the Cow. They fill the earth with milk, water with fatness-dripping milk, and drop fatness honey-hued. They bring together the two worlds, the mighty waters and the Sun they are, like the Asvins, born together and, like the twins, are called coursers and are possessed of horses and cows themselves.

Maruts and the Mind: As Maruts are associated with the energy of the Mind, characterised by electric energy or lightning, they make lightenings with their powers possess lightning laden cars deck themselves with lightning in their hands wield the thunderbolt and have lightning for their spears.

Maruts and Other Gods: As almost all Vedic gods are associated with the Mind and the senses of knowledge and action, and Indra is the chief among those who relate to creative action or sacrifice, the Maruts, representing the same idea, are the brothers of Indra join him in his fights are ruled by him, and of one accord with him and like him they drink Soma slay Witra cause the waters to descend pour the torrents down set the storm cloud free to stream through the worlds; and cause the rain floods to flow over the desert spots. Like Indra they are wonder workers urge themselves to speed and are rapid as the wind. As Indra is associated with Vishnu, they follow the latter as his band, and are at one with him.

Thus we see that the gods hymned in the Vedas represent great energies of life Heart, Buddhi, Mind, and Ether, considered from different points of view. The twofold character of Ether, dividing the universe into two halves, Purushic and Prakrtic, is represented by Heaven and Earth or Dyu and Prthvi; while the twin senses of knowledge and action, related to this twofold character, are personified by the two Asvins. Mind energy in connection with the senses of knowledge is represented by Soma; while Rudra represents the Mind in connection with the senses of action. Buddhi in association with the senses of knowledge is personified by Agni; while Indra personifies Buddhi in association with the senses of action. The three different ways in which it is possible to think of Heart energy, as Prakrtic, Purushic, and Purushic and Prakrtic both, are represented by Varuna, Vishnu, and Vayu or Vata the minor gods and goddesses of the Vedas represent the great energies of life in the same way. The three goddesses, Bharati, Ida, and Sarasvati personify three different ways of looking at Prakrti, as Ether, Mind, and energy of the Heart; while all the three combined are represented by Usas or Dawn. In the same manner Maruts represent the combined senses of knowledge and action in association with the Mind, completing what is lacking in the idea of Rudra and Soma separately.

Further, we notice that we are able to interpret the gods of the Vedas in this manner in the light of our letter analysis and the diagram of the alphabet, where each letter expresses an idea and an energy of life, and all combined serve to indicate the significance of a name; and this would support our theory regarding the character and form of the Sanskrt language as created by the genius of man to be a living picture of the universe.

The energies of life represented by the gods of the Vedas constitute the basis of all post-Vedic thought of the Hindus, on which have been reared all their great systems of philosophy and religion Sankhya, Yoga, and Vedanta, and the religions associated with the names of Buddha, Siva, and Vishnu, founded on Ether, Mind, and Buddhi (the first manifestation of the Heart) as the great manifest creative energies; and so are the Vedas acknowledged to be supreme in authority in all matters relating to Hindu philosophy and religion.

Further, it has been shown that all the three great systems of philosophy and religion are associated with the three Gunas and so may the Vedas be regarded as dealing with the three Qualities. Again, as the three Gunas meet in Ether, with its twofold character, Purushic and Prakrtic, and as the highest of creatures on Earth, viz., the viviparous, are made manifest in Prakrtic Ether, characterised by the senses of action, the Vedas, dealing with the manifestation of life, may appropriately be said to deal with Action, the counterpart of Gunas, too; and we have seen how the idea of Action is expressed in each principal god of the Vedas; and wherever it is lacking in the very meaning of a name, it is regarded as a defect and an attempt is made to rectify it. Accordingly the Vedas are said to deal with the three Gunas and to enjoin action as a sacrifice.

The idea of sacrifice has already been explained: it is conceived as selfless and creative action, which by uniting together (the senses of) action with (those of) knowledge, can transform a Prakrtic into a Purushic energy; and this is expressed in the very word, Yajna, meaning a sacrifice, where the conjunct consonant, jn (a) represents the union of Prakrtic (j) and Purushic Ether (na), conceived as creative (ya). Accordingly the later Vedas, especially the Yajur and Atharva, are said to consist of hymns of sacrifice; and the Brahmanas to relate to the ritual, ceremonial, or sacrificial part of the Vedas. But if sacrifice is understood in its proper light as Purushic or creative action, we have a key to the correct understanding of a great deal of Vedic and post-Vedic literature. This creative action is expressed in symbolic terms, in the form of material and immaterial things offered as sacrifice; for the whole universe, according to the Hindus, is created out of the sacrifice of the Supreme Purusha himself and so is each act of sacrifice but an act of creation of a newer form of life.

But this form of expression in terms of sacrifice created a new problem of its own: the original meaning of the Vedas stood in danger of being lost in the language of sacrifice; and it became necessary to explain it in a more simple form, shorn of as much symbolism as possible. This was done in the Upanishads, which constitute a great body of commentary, explanation and illustration of Vedic thought; and these have been compressed into Sutras or Aphorisms of the different systems of Hindu philosophy Sankhya, Yoga, Vedanta and the rest.

But the Upanishads and Aphorisms of philosophy would appear to have been too dry and abstruse for the average mind, and for it the truths of the Vedas had to be dressed in story form; but the story had to be so constructed that, while appearing to be an account of great and heroic deeds of mighty men and gods, it should yield its true and philosophic meaning when analyzed and interpreted in the light of its original conception. This was the problem of the Puranas and the epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata.

In this connection it is necessary to observe that post-Vedic thought was not a mere repetition of Vedic ideas; it was both an explanation and an expansion, and in one respect significantly so. We have observed that the Vedas deal with the three great manifest energies of life, Ether, Mind, and Buddhi; and the Heart as Prakrtic, Purushic, and Purushic and Prakrtic both. But this combined Purushic and Prakrtic character of the Heart is very inadequately described; and it is only in post-Vedic thought that it comes to be more and more clearly defined; till in the Krshna idea not only are the two identified, but the separate character of Prakrti is eliminated, and it is held that all that appears be of Prakrti is really of Purusha himself. This is at the root of Vedanta, by which the human mind transcended the bounds of Vedic thought.

This difference between the character of Vedic and post-Vedic thought is expressed by the terms Sruti and Smrti. The former is usually understood to signify that which has been heard or communicated from the beginning, referring to the Vedas as sacred, eternal words heard by holy sages or Rishis while the latter constitutes the whole body of sacred tradition remembered by human teachers', and includes all post-Vedic literature, the six Vedangas, the Sutras or Aphorisms, the law books of Manu, and Puranas, and the great epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata. But according to our method of interpretation Sruti (S, r, u, ti) means, This is (ti, being the Vedic form of iti) Buddhi (S, assigned to the region of Buddhi), associated with Mind (r, assigned to the Mind) and Purushic Ether or the senses of knowledge (u) while Smriti (S, m, r ti) means, This is (ti or iti) Heart energy, akin to the Mind(S), associated with Purushic (m, assigned to this region) and Prakrtic Ether (n), or the senses of knowledge.