Friday, June 26, 2020

HINDU CONCEPTION OF MOTHER


Hindus have well developed and fully appreciated the motherly aspect. Hindu devotees have not seldom propitiated their Gods by the last remedy of addressing them as Mother. Bhakta Tukaram addressed his worshipped, Vithobā, as Māuli (Mother) when He could not be moved to pity otherwise In the life of Lord Gauranga (CHAITANYA PRABHU) we find that his devotees who were unworthy o approaching him as Lord Krishna were once full of remorse on being refused to have his darshan during his manifestation as Lord Krishna. However, when they were prepared to commit suicide, He BECAME MOTHER. Hindus have left no tribute unpaid in the matter of adoration and appreciation of Mother. While praying to God, they have first addressed Him as Mother. “Thou art Mother, Thou art Father, Thou art Brother and Thou art Friend”.
 
Nothing is more popular than Shree Shankarāchārya's prayer in these words “ Wicked sons are many to be found in this universe, but there has never existed one wicked Mother”. Further, he apologizes to Mother by referring to the human selfish nature of people, who, resort to Mother only in difficulties and then entirely forget neglect and disown Her, in these words “The child only when hungry remembers Mother". Hindus have also from time to time appreciated Mother's might (SHAKTI) in destroying evils, which none else can eradicate. Further, Hindus have accepted Mother's right to be worshipped along with other Gods. There are also Purāns and Bhāgawats in adoration of Mother. Mother's Ideal has also been recognised in the home worship of the five Gods,

For Mother's conception, the Mother's Lodge is fully indebted to Hinduism. But the conceptions of the Mother's Lodge are not the same as those of Hinduism, at least as understood to-day by the masses.

With the advent of times, the Mother's Ideal has been so degenerated, that as understood to-day it is not even the shadow of its real self. As soon as the word Mātā which means “ Mother ” is repeated, the picture which an average Hindu has before him is that of an invincible power, which if pleased enthrones one in heaven, and if displeased buries him in the Netherworld. The ideal of the Mother's Love to Her child has been followed by few of Her worshippers. All along Mother has been depicted as the highest power and in the outer circle of devotees at least, it is not entirely wrong if one says, that the adoration for Mother is an outcome of fear of Her displeasure and the very easy procurability of whatever is demanded through Her. Most of the people approach Herfor one of the two reasons. It is either to demand Her help if they are under some difficulty or to avert Her wrathfulness, but there is little beyond this on the higher plane of love or spiritual evolution. There have been very few instances of devotees who have loved Mother as mother, and still worse, most of the devotees who have done so have treated their devotion to Mother as one of the greatest secrets.

During the last Navratri holidays of 1938, I happened to read the Amrit Bazar Patrika issue, in which there were vivid and detailed descriptions of Mother worship in all parts of India, as also a description of Sjt. Arbindo Ghosh's Mother Conception. I request readers to be impartial and decide for themselves, as to what the universal conception throughout the length and breadth of India has been. Is it a Personification of Power or Mother's Love to Her child ?

Very recently in a leading paper dated 2nd October 1938, the popular conception about Mother was ably and aptly analysed and that described Mother as Goddess though benign, of sternness, terror and destructibility.

In a word, as time passed, Love-aspect was almost lost and the Power-aspect got wildest publicity. The Mother has revived to be Mother in Her Love-aspect, recently only when Blessed Shree Ramakrishna gave by his life of Love to Mother, the living realisation of the Ideal.

They have not understood Blessed Shree Ramakrishna who have not churned out this essence of his living, viz., that he had a specific message give, viz., that of loving God as Mother and Mother as mother. The first need was however first served and the tremendous power of his spirituality was utilized to revive the lost lustre and glory of Hinduism. Mother gave up Her son to Hinduism and remained satisfied with the uplift of Hinduism, although the promulgation of Her fully universal legitimate doctrine and devotion was shelved and postponed for a second Ramakrishna to come in more favorable age. Mother's true lovers do feel sorry when celebrations of that Mother's pet child are made, and Glorification of Mother in such celebrations is entirely banished.

There are certain facts which time alone can prove. My heart-burns were often belittled and even ridiculed by many. They said “There is nothing new. Hindus have been worshipping God as Mother". “Why should you further speak about the thing, which even recently Blessed Shree Ramakrishna has preached and whose preaching are continued by so many missions ?"
One day one great devotee of Mother and Shree Ramakrishna and one of my beloved friends, who is the writer of the Life of Paramahamsa in Gujarati broke out to me Brother, excuse me, I mistook you and belittled your zeal, but I have found that Paramahamsa has been entirely cut off from Mother and Mother has been alienated from Paramahamsa”.

Mother gave up Her dearest son to serve Hinduism when it had gone pale, and worn-out and was insulted by not only other religionists but the very home-children. Mother demands now after a century, the revival of the ideal of the Universal Mother and Motherhood. My Hindu Brethren have now to respond.
 
Degeneration that the Mother's Ideal has suffered is due to the following wrong notions. Degeneration began with identifying Mother with Māyā. Advocates of Brahman theory wanted to save Brahman from the imputations of inequality, cruelty, partiality, injustice, etc., and they laid the blame on the shoulders of Māyā, whom they knew only as the Illusion-creator. "Thus Māyā, which sometimes is called Ādimāyā was conceived by some as the great player of jugglery, and was held responsible for the creation of the Universe, and for all that is frightful, misery-creative, ignorance-productive and so on. Hindu Mother was identified with Adimāyā on one hand and Māyā was described as the greatest heartless cheat on the other.

As per mother's (Mai's) Ideal, there is no indispensable necessity of assuming two entities as Brahman and Māyā. Brahman is Finalmost Mother and She acts sometimes as passive Mother and sometimes as active Mother. Creator and creation, happiness and misery, heaven and hell, deities angels and human beings, all these and the universe are not unreal. Nothing is unreal, till by actual realisation these and the universe become unreal. So long as the soul has any relation with bodies, and so long as one is affected even to the slightest extent physically, mentally or spiritually, these do exist and are not unreal.

There is no Illusion or unreality about the universe, which is managed by Mother with the highest Perfection, Justice, Law and Order as Power and Love. The realisation of unreality of the universe does come in the end, to some few blessed souls, but premature prattling about unreality has been extremely dangerous.

Next came the idea of consortship. The Gods Brahmä, Vishnu and Mahesh of creat nourishment and destruction had their goddes Sävitri Lakhsmi and Pārvati as their wives an these were again confused with Mother. Sāvitri and Lakshmi played a very small part in the great work done by these Gods but Pārvati the consort of Shiva the god of destruction received greater adoration mostly out of fear and the most erroneous notion came to be that Mother was Pārvati.

Next came the idea of Power and mainly the destructive power, although of course for the destruction of evils. Naturally Parvati was in the limelight. She became Mother, but people could not leave the idea of consort-ship, and therefore Shiva was raised to the status of a counter half of Twin Duo-Monad, viz., Shiva-Shakti, much above his original status as one of the Trinity Gods. Thus arose the idea of Shiva and Shakti, one entity made of two entities, viz., that of Ardha-nūrishvar. Two in one, half to half.
In times of yore, it also happened that the greatest fears arose from destiny-ruling centers of nature forces as Sun, Rains, floods, famines, epidemics, etc., and Mother went being associated with all those forces of Nature, as well. Perhaps almost every where, except for blessed few, Mother Nature ante dated and predominated over the God, and the first Divinity worshipped was in Mother's Form.

Rivers and earths and native lands became Mother. Smallpox and measles went being associated with Mother, Cow became Mother, weapons became Mother. To avert the wrathfulness of epidemics or rain droughts Mother went being propitiated. Mother agreed to be out of love to Her children, what they desired Her to be. Just note the tremendous faith in the protection of Mother. It is only to the Mother that one can lay claim. Worship of Ganges who turns the most sinful to be sinless is as “Mother Ganges". The sinful cannot have the face to approach Ganges as Father, for, be it remembered that Mother alone is Mercy. Justice demands that the sinful must suffer. The cry of “Do not look to what we are, what we have done and what we shall be (most ungrateful), but save us,” can only be addressed to the Mother, and it is therefore why Mother was and is propitiated as stated above.

What a pity! That I should have been driven by Mother to speak of Her Love to Her children ! Mother on hearing the cry, first removes the source of misery, danger or fear, and thereafter alone, approaches the child and asks, “Why did you call me?”

And the only answer that the wise have to give with joy, on being relieved of sorrow which befalls on reaching the climax of ungratefulness is, “Everything has been done by Thee, Oh Mother! Nothing remains to be done (Here which devotee will not be shedding tears!).

“Bhagavatyā kritam sarvam, Na kinchidavashishyate"
 
This being Mother's heart, my repeated request to those that follow Mother is that they should fail in thanks-giving, which in the case of Mother devotion has much greater importance than the prive for relief itself.

I know my Mother's nature. She is very sportive, as every mother is to her child. She says to Her devotees, “Oh! I have done nothing to relieve you. It is your own victory. The source of misery and fear disappeared, by accident, by your own prowess.". And here the fool gets himself deluded.

What every ignorant world-worm of yore knew about Mother by experience as a never-failing truth was, that She saved Her worshippers from the wrathfulness and ruinous-ness of all those nature-force centres. Thus when the Sun shone extremely hot and there were no rains, “ Shākambhari manifested Herself to save Her devotees from dying of hunger, supplying them with eatables and vegetables of all varieties."
Sapta-Shari, which is the most popular sacred book on the subject of Mother, is a continued narration of the manifestation of the highest Power, which vanquished and killed the demons who oppressed the Devās (petty deities).

As per Mother's (Māi's) Ideal, She is equally the Mother of demons as of the deities. If She were Mother of the Devās alone, Demons would not have been able to drive away the Devās from heavens. It is this tendency of stamping sealed covers one way another, that has been responsible for what looks paradoxical. The truth is Devas are not Devas, unless they live as Devās. When Devās become demons (saint without, devil within), 'demons overpower the Devās.

Mother is not mother of Devās versus demons. Mother is not the Mother of Hindus versus non-Hindus, not of Brahmins versus non-Brahmins. She is the Mother of them that worship Her as Mother and of all. The conquests or defeats are simply adjustments for equilibrium following Her Divine Will, when they become necessary as a result_of accumulated evil.

It is for this reason of delusion that is created by presumptions that the Mother's Ideal recommends the faculty of judging of ourselves not by our positional values but by the tests of the fundamental truths which we can satisfy.

Next to the recognition of the highest Power and Her easy grace, came power worship. This threw morality into the background, while Devotion received supreme consideration. This sure success on worship of Power without any consideration of merit so much put the world into the delusion, that Mother went being associated with Demons, and instances were not wanting, where demons worshipped Power by greatest self-mortifications and austerities and having secured boons from Power, tore the Devās (petty deities) to mere rags flying in the air.

Devotion being considered and having been proved by experience to be powerful enough to achieve any success, all other considerations and observances were thrown overboard. The over-fondled child became entirely spoiled. Wonderfully enough, some As. were after Parvati Herself. The case of Rāvanh opponent of Rāma is most typical. He had enslaved all the deities, and yet he had a very poor idea of morality, which could be inferred from his kidnapping Rāma's most beloved and chaste wife, Mother Seeta On the other hand his devotion was unique. It is said when once he was worshipping Mother, one lotus for worship was missing. He could not brook a single moment's delay and he cut off his head and offered the same to Mother as the missing lotus, Mother was so very pleased that she gave him ten heads in return.

While the Power was being worshipped and propitiated in the outer world on one hand, there was the exploration of the highest human power in the most wonderful common possession of all human beings, viz., the body itself. The presence of power latent therein and capable of most wonderful development was known and studied as the science of Yoga, and this power too went being associated with Mother. Kundalini Shakti lying in the Mulādhār chakra in every human body became Mother. By the worship of this Mother in the shape of the Serpentine Power, Yoga went being practised, not seldom for achieving Siddhis (supernatural powers), which in course of time went being abused and brought degeneration on the heads of the mal-practitioners.

On battle fields also Mother went being propitiated, and it was never a point of consideration, whether the cause for the war was just or not.

Thus in a word, Mother was identified with power and devotion was believed as quite enough to secure it either on the field by the warriors, or in forests where demons practised highest austerities, or in places infected with epidemics, or even when dacoits and robbers and thieves started out of their homes for their nefarious pursuits.

Love, disinterested Devotion, Morality, Truthfulness, surrender to God's will and all the tendermost qualities of Mother went being neglected except to the extent they thrust themselves upon the devotee for the proper carrying out of devotion. No wonder then, that a little later, Mother went being associated with all kinds of Royal powers, emotional pleasures and cruelly harmful practices. (Mahālakshmi, Mahāsarasvati and Mahākāli.)

Then came in the name of Mother, whose ideal had degenerated to a very low abyss, the most horrible “Vāma Mārga,” which cannot be adequately translated. The nearest approximation would be “Woman supremacy Path,” “Unstraightforward Path” “Left hand Path". Of course, there is a good deal of mysticism and spiritual force behind the practice of this process, but it cannot be too strongly said that the path is one, which can be well compared with poisonous drugs, which have wonderful efficacy in very exceptional cases, if taken with full obedience to the instructions of the doctors, but have often taken lives of so many indifferent and disobedient patients. Under the requirements of this path, Mother began being supposed to demand animal and human sacrifices. Some human beings were carried to be sacrificed to Mother under force. The follow in course of time became bold enough to say the salvation could not be had except by frequent resort to pleasure-giving pursuits. They said, “Five “M”s were necessary to secure the sixth “M”, viz. Mukti (Salvation). These five “M”s were Madya (liquor-offering), Matsya (fish-offering), Mānsa (flesh offering), Mudră (egg-offering), and Maithun (sexual enjoyment). There are so many traditions about some human beings being carried away to be sacrificed, as a Nara-Bali under force. In some cases there was an open declaration, that a certain holy person was selected to be sacrificed. Before the day of the sacrifice, that selected being was worshipped and supplied with all kinds of enjoyment for days together, Members of the Royal family also worshipped him. In some ages, prisoners of wars were being sacrificed. Not many years before, rumours were afloat, that children were captured by religious fanatics, because rice boiled in water with their blood was an item of menu after worship, for worshippers of a particular faith.

Some take Mudrā to mean symbol-showing or some substitute Mudga for Mudrā, which means cereal food.

These remarks are not restricted to India or Hinduism. Vāma Mārga praetices were more or less prevalum in all parts of the world and in several religions in olden times.

In the field of sexual pleasure, the institute of Deva-Dāsis came into being. Those were women that were dedicated to Mother, especially by parents who had no issue, when they got the first daughter, and who later lived by prostitution. Adultery did not stop there. Members of high families and especially females, who could not have the pleasure of revelry otherwise, joined the Ghat Kanchuki Sampraday in the name of the Mother. This meant that whichever male and female happened to have their kerchief and bodice drawn out simultaneously through a ballot by the Guru, could enjoy each other without any fear of incurring sin.

Thus the idea of Mother went being degenerated. The Illusion-Maker, the Misery-creator, the Power which was in the end sure to be abused, Consort, Goddess of the five “M”s, Goddess of animal and human sacrifice, drinking and adultery, Goddess that took possession of Her devotees, (who would then be worshipped and requested to bless others and tell future, etc.), Goddess of fear and wrathfulness, vindictivity and cruelty, Goddess that would punish for even unconscious errors, Goddess of dacoits, robbers and thieves, and Goddess of black magic, etc.

Although strong efforts have been made to explain objectionable shlokās relating to Vāma Mārga in quite the reverse interpretations, the fact remains that there were ages and millions in each age, whose beliefs were as above described.

It is not that there is no other side, and in some stages of evolution nothing can be a better remedy than the sometime practice of some processes, but those uses have to be very exceptional. There are uses of poison also. But poison is poison, and unless you know its use or act under full guidance and perfect obedience of a doctor and only as a last remedy, you are sure to lose your life.

There are, (1) the substance and (2) the all told manifest working about it. Very hazily, the former is Shiva and the latter is Shakti. In fact, the very cognizance of the existence of Shiva is due to Shakti. Say the Mother's picture is before you. It stands there un-fallen because the floor has the Shakti (power) to hold it. You see it because your eyes have the Shakti of seeing it and because the sun during day or light during night has the Shakti of illuminating it. If your eye, or sun or light has no Shakti, the picture does not exist for you. One aspect of the Shakti of mind enables the mind stuff to assume the form of the picture. Another aspect of the Shakti of mind tells you “you are blessed". A still another aspect of Shakti begins to recollect for you, what you once heard and knew about "Mother”, and suggests what should be done and so on. Shiva is like a substance, over which, under which, through which, across which, about which, regarding which, in favour of which, and what not which, Shakti plays Her sport of starting, continuing, increasing, decreasing, deflecting, obstructing, stopping, etc., of motion and vibration, both taken in the widest sense. It must be always remembered that Mother Māi is beyond this Shiva and Shakti.

Taking these two elements of Shiva and Shakti, as abstract qualities, Love without power is deadness and Power without Love is destructivity (first of others and finally of itself). One is suicide, another is murder. A country like India can well be said to be emblematic of love without power, and any country in the West with up-to-date machine guns, torpedoes, etc., may be taken to be emblematic of power without love,
(a) What India wants is the worship of Shakti,
what West wants is the worship of Shiva, and what both want is the worship of the Finalmost Mother of the Mai-ist, from whom (1) Love outer, Power inner, and (2) Power outer, Love inner come into being. Similarly passivity unless it is well earned by activity is rusting, whereas activity unless it is directed towards the attainment of peacefulness wasteful wearing out. East and West are here too emblematic of the two Stated Conditions respectively. To give a still further idea, Shiva is the acted upon, and Shakti is the actor, Shiva is the mass and Shakti is the force. Shiva is, say, more spirit, less matter. Shakti is more matter, less spirit. Shiva is the substance and Shakti, the property. Shiva is, petrified without Shakti, and Shakti burns itself away into flames, if not loved by Shiva, Shiva is the spectator and Shakti is, the sportive player. Shiva is oxygen and Shakti is hydrogen.
(b) Hinduism has fallen because Motherhood has
been neglected. By neglecting Motherhood, it is not meant that the worship of Idols as Mother is neglected, but neglecting the underlying development of right understanding of the special features and of special qualities pertaining to Mother's Ideal.
By Mother is meant activity, exemplary sacrifice, readiness to suffer, little differences and still less hatred and pride of high and low; practice, freedom, science, conviction, Purushartha (exertion), character, sincerity, bold self-exposure, voluntary sells mortification, full faith, spirit, etc.

Principally there are three conceptions attached to the name of Mother (1) Shakti, power, (2) Devi, God consort and (3) Mãi, Mother. The physical aspect of Māi (1) has been greatly developed in the West. The mystic and metaphysical aspect has been wonderfully developed by sages of ancient India. The second aspect has given rise to chivalry, equal rights, dancing balls, etc., in the West, and a unique and enviable status of the family lady in religious life in India. The third aspect, viz., of Māi as Mother is practically unknown and unpracticed on an appreciable scale. It is this third aspect that the Mother's Lodge represents and lays greatest emphasis on.

The first two aspects have brought into being the Shākta Märga and the Vama Mārga. The Māi Mārga in consonance with the third aspect is sought being spread and developed by Mother's Lodge or Māi Mandal, or Mai Adherents Institute or Universal Mai-ism.

In the West is the practice. In India is the theory. Fathomless ocean of it. Reading of Gita by millions is in India and the fearlessness of death is in the West. The Motherly aspect of God is in India and the development and training on the lines of the above said special features of Mother is in the West.

Can it be that the nation which is religious should rot in slavery ? The real fact is that in India there is every theory but no practice. Other nations have few ideals but they put them into practice in daily routine living. If India wants practice, Motherhood must come. If India wants solidarity of a nation Motherhood must reappear. If India wants peace and love and prosperity, Mother Ideal must be regenerated. There must be right understanding, sincerity and full practice. Mere theory and selfsufficiency under the opiate influence of “No nation is so religious as ours”, etc., will not take Indians out from the frogwell and mudmire.

Well frogs, believe it impossible that there can be anywhere anything bigger or better than their own well,

It is a well-known popular, seriptural Hindu tradition that in the Iron-age of Kali-yuga the only Saviour deities will be Chandi, i.e., Shakti or Mother as power and Vināyaka the favourite son of Mother as Love. And for them that have broadest notions about Mother as Power, it is not difficult to see that the world is drifting towards Mother, (as Power and Energy). Machinery is Mother, knowledge is Mother, military equipment is Mother. Turning to the social life, we find religion as preached till now (call it Father's religion) to have entirely disappeared. Where do you find celibacy? Where do you find joint family living ? Where do you find masters (Gurus) and disciples (Shishyās)? Where are castes ? Where are restrictions of eating, etc.? Where is obedience to parents and society? Where is the absorption of the wife in the husband? Where is the sacredness of marriage and chastity and fidelity of married life? Where are the selfless-religious preachers and where is the sacrifice to maintain them and help the spread and revival of religion? The world is drifting to the Shākta Mārga and Vama Mārga without knowing it at all. Sense enjoyment and revelry are up to the brim. (Brothels, bars, butcher houses, betting homes etc.). The world has left the Father's control of fear and compulsion, abandoned Father's methods, and violated Father's Commands Woman has now been more prominent and has greater power over man than in the past. We are drifting Mother-ward, of course, at the present stage onwards
towards Mother of Shākta and Vama Mārga. The last efforts to keep us back and within the control of the Father's rule have failed ; Matter has almost subdued Spirit.

These two words of Shākta and Vāma are used by me in the following senses. Shākta Mārga mainly means invoking the Grace of Mother as Power and resorting to prescribed methods to get greater powers of health, wealth, inind-subjugati 19 and even molesting others and getting things adjusted as desired, etc. Vāma Mārga mainly means resorting to methods intended originally for spiritual uplift of worship, devotion, meditation and concentration on Mantras, Tantras, Shree Chakra and chakras in the human body, etc., and indulging in devotion, dispensing with the ordinary social rules about diet, urity observances, restrictions, morality, etc.

This is the age of industrialism, individualism, science, reason, free thinking, equality, fraternity and liberty. One familiar with Hindu notions can very well see that he is residing in the realm of Shakti. Following of scriptures and priest-craft is gone, gone for ever. Obedience to command from others is gone. In the first case the reason and in another case the love of liberty, has both revolted. Hinduism is such a deep ocean of religious thought and theory, that with a little rectification of its misunderstandings it can assimilate any healthy reform. A Mai-ist's concern is the spread of true understanding about Mother, single-minded devotion and the universal outlook and practical spirit of sisterhood and brotherhood, self-surrender with full faith in the easy process of salvation through Mother, etc.

There is at a present a distortion of our life. The way we like to live, the way we actually live, the way we say to others we live and the way we are asked by scriptures to live, are all different. There are at least these four diverse currents in our living smashing our life to meaningless waste and deteriora tion.
Taking the diagnosis of the world to-day the world has been most selfish and therefore most miserable. Discoveries of Science have shattered individual religions, as nothing is left to be desired in the life after death and because religions have unfortunately not been nuggets of gold unalloyed with dross. Science has enthroned Mammon whose favors rarely need the qualifications of religiosity or righteousness.

Industry and Exchange have almost dispensed with the need of human help in the outer living. Democracy has brought in the spirit of not extending but claiming equality, fraternity and liberty. Towering personalities affording Ideals for plain-living and high-thinking are becoming fewer. Notions about religion have been narrowed. Religion formerly given through touch is now sought being given through the tongue. Women, Harijans, Servants, Relations, Dependents and the Ruled have risen in rebellion. The whole atmosphere is saturated with sense-living, discontent and selfishness.

The selfishness has been sought to be controlled by legislature, education, appeal to the higher instinct and cry for the spirit of brotherhood. All these remedies have failed and we have now turned to Gou and Religion as the Last Refuge.
We cannot be happy without religion, and religions as they are have lost all love, faith and esteem, Is there no way out ?
I. In the circumstances what is needed to-day
is the most careful sifting and clearing of all religious Ideas and Ideals, with a spirit of oneness, impartiality and un-preconceived-ness, truth-seeking, overhauling and resetting of the whole thing, reducing the dross as much as possible and retaining gold. The present conditions must be studied. This world and happiness of the humanity of this world must have also as important a place as that of the other world and relation of an individual with his God in seclusion. Religion must be brought to bear light on burning questions of the day. Under the changed conditions where the relational and communal ties have entirely disappeared, these problems are not insignificant ones. When people have lost all training in self-control and sacrifice for a higher life, the sex problem is not so easy. When people are in entire oblivion regarding the hundredfold higher happiness proceeding from the mind, soul or God (Mother), it is not easy to dissuade them frora sense enjoyment-craving or Materialism-Mirage pursuit. Compulsion without the gauging of the capacity of any age is only a curse and cause for hypocrisy and debasement. Some constructive mentality must always be there and there must be measures for discipline taught by and with and through love. We must make out the best in the circumstances in which we are, rather than lose everything, peace, happiness, Soul and God.
While trying to arrive at a suitable path, I found that Mother's path was most suitable. As I would like to put it, there are two paths. Father's path and Mother's path, on the basis of the understanding through various scriptures of Hinduism. There is no Mother's path in any other religion. Although Mother Mary worship still prevails in Catholic churches, the worship is subordinated to the chief worship of Lord Christ and psychologically it does not afford a different path. All past religions have been of the former classification. The difference is this.

One is routine path, another is the rugged path. One is long, another is short. In one there is full safety but deadness, in another there is full life but danger. In one there is no freedom, in the other there is no protection. In one case you are in a well protected castle, in another you are abroad but with a steel armor. One is the path of passivity, another of activity. One is the teaching of statics, another is the teaching of dynamics (including statics). In one, goal is being happy, in another being perfect. In you have scriptures and hereditary gurus to follow, another you have to follow your own experiences ar decisions with voluntary following of the guru whom yo select for yourself. In one, your religious living means
observing Sandhyā, Pujā, doing Nitya and Naimittika. Karmas, observing your customs, bathing, not taking non-vegetarian food, attendance on churches, etc. In another, religious living means living in strict following with fundamental truths only, leaving social matters to the individual will. In one there is “no change”, in another there is “change with the requirements of the times in the outer coatings of religion, and life.” In one, religion is a private concern between God and the God aspirant. In another he has to be in full rhyming with God, universe and other beings. In one case no enjoyment, in another practising self-control in midst of enjoyment. In one case woman is a hell-carrier, in another she is an indispensable companion. In one case, folds of castes, in another case whole humanity. In one case, seeking scriptural knowledge, in another seeking experience. In one case, alleopathy alone. In another, surgery in addition..

I do not see everything to be the same thing. I find there are differences of the visual angles and beliefs and methods and I see the world is shifting towards the Mother's path. I am afraid that if the Hindus do not revise their beliefs and set their house in order by a new dispensation, revising their scriptures and their interpretations and removing the chaff and retaining the gold, they will soon find in less than two or three hundred years that the Left Path or Vāmāchar would return, and capture and contaminate Hinduism. It is for them to foresee, and with a little foregoing of details and prejudices, it should respect the Satwik One Religion of One God, viz., that of the “Vishva Janani,” “The Universal Mother,” “Māi”, rather than be weak enough to fall a prey to the Vāmāchar of Rājasik and Tūmasik nature, or to masked materialism or out and out atheism.

We have left one shore. We cannot go back. It is impossible for any one to take us back. Let us then have a new religion, new way of looking and living, new morality, new religion, new control, new discipline, new method and new belief.

And this is what the Mother's Lodge is trying to lay foundations of, under the Grace of God as Mother of Love and Mercy and not Power, under the regime of Mâi and not Shakti. I am too conscious of my inability to take up the onerous-task and I have smarted under the most humiliating failure. But I am determined and feel convinced I am working under Mother's command. My spade work will be taken up by mighty souls, or at least it will reform Hinduism in matter of the most pernicious beliefs, about Mother. None need advise me about abandoning the work. Every Religion needs overhauling and all religions need unification under One Banner. I am prepared for every failure. I will be doing Mother's service even after my death. My pains none can know but Mother.

Mother's Lodge scripture is simple enough. Six words only. Mother, Love to Mother and Her children, universality, service, devotion, and unconditional cheerful self-surrender.
Of course, practice will take time but at least scripture is over. In every act, thought and desire keep these six words before you. If the practice is observed with full austerity and is crowned with success by Mother's Grace resulting from your devotion to Her, Salvation is on your palm. Just practise for a year, and you will find you are transformed. Practise it at least one day (Mother's days being Friday and Saturday) in a week or one day in a month the Full Moon Day or once in a year on your birthday or guru's birth or your initiation day or once in your life on your death-bed, and mark the change.

Mother's day is the day of practice. Do not be wrathful on the day. Do not tell a lie. Do not cheat. Do not abuse superiority. Do not exploit helplessness, ignorance or misunderstanding. Do not refuse possible service to a needy one. Do not indulge in pleasure. Do not behave haughtily. Do not look lustfully. Do not pervert truth. Do not take an uncharitable view. Do not think a bad thought. Do no bad act. Crush no poor.

None needs being taught what should be done and what not. Be religious and truly religious on that one day at least. All other days are again yours to lead a free life as your lower mind selects for you. Do what little you can. For a Māi-ist a little is always better than nothing and a matter for satisfaction for himself and encouragement and example for others.

(Hindu) Mother's Temples are there, Scriptures are there, Worships by hundreds with ear-membranes breaking bell-ringings and drum-beatings are there, Priests are there, Pandits are there.
What is not there is the Spirit, the Understanding, the Outlook, the Sincerity, the Faith, the perseverant Practice.

A bath and kitchen religion cannot help us out. A divorce of the life as we live and the life as we should live as required by religion cannot take us out of the miraculous maze.

One argument from experienced sympathizers is this. To extend love, even though of course to the extent possible, to whomever we have to deal with, is in reality much harder work than going to the temple daily or reading some scriptural book or observing a little daily religious duty or little bodily purity or even giving over a good sum in charity. If religiosity is to be judged by the test stones of service and love and devotion, irreligiosity will be largely exposed. Religiosity will be reduced to more or less a personal concern and so many activities in the name of religion will be dropped, for few will stand these tests.

Yes, there is good deal of truth. It is easier to donate a dazzling hundred out of thousands earned, keeping love banished out of mind, than to desist from earning a hundred if not obtainable without banishing love. But then on this point, even at the worst, the Mother's Lodge and universal Mai-ism prefers a religion-less world to the world teeming with selfish, suitable and sham religion.

There is nothing more natural when producers become more than the consumers and the preachers more than the followers than that the practice-less preaching industry should be immediately brought to an end.

They that get unnerved at the slightest departure from the dead routine are in reality devoid of final faith although they impute lack of faith to others that propose any change whatsoever. They that cannot tolerate or appreciate a change of the outer garment in which the same old truth reappears are neither lovers nor realisers of truth.

Irreligion is for religion, war is for peace, doubting is for believing, sleeping for waking, falling for rising and creeping for running. The world can never remain without religion. If under the name of religion, political, social, economical, national, communal and personal fights are to be fought, if religion is only for abuse, coercion, exploitation and selfishness, better no religion than sham religion. Foresighted men of faith should not get enraged or unnerved or submerged in hopeless despondency at the slightest disturbance or slightest disappearance of the religious hubbub.
When the hen is not clucking she is silently busy with hatching her eggs. When a man is sleeping, his. soul is busiest. Let animal man look and be known as animal without the religious garb. That animal. will sooner or later some day begin to hate itself and become man, but that luckewarmness and hypocrisy and self-deception shall never be remedied even by best of men.
“Refuse to live on rotten crumbs and Mother will run down to prepare for you and give you the most. wholesome dish.”
 
On one side the practice of virtues which arc the different shades of love and service between man and man, i.e., Service and Love, and on the other side, devotion and self-surrender. On Friday do not permit thoughts on other things but Mother. Nothing but Mother and Mother alone. Her praise, Her remembrance, Her Grace, in making and having made us better, Her glory, Her name repetition, everything about Her and Her alone, Prayer to Mother to bless you with the spirit and circumstances of serving others, to bless you with larger heart which can love all. Recapi tulating the events of the week and offering your account to Her.
Mother's Lodge has not the same old story of Religion to tell. It is something different, although not new and not opposed to true religion, and if readers have the intelligence of seeing through with subtlities that will be very apparent.

The first main point is that we as the followers of Mother's religion are direct devotees of God as Mother and God of the whole humanity. So far as religious feelings and sentiments of any individual religion go, to us every one of any religion is a brother, as we are the followers of the Universal Religion of One Mother.

The second main point is that our first conception in the field of religion is that “ We are one and all children of the same God” That we are Hindus of Brahmins or otherwise has only a secondary and almost little importance. We may be Hindu-Maists, Christian-Maists, Mohammedan-Māists, etc., but are  Maists children of same parents, Mother and Father, (Mother or Father).

The third main point is that to get Mother's grace we must serve and love all to the extent of our capability. We are religious only to the extent we are capable of and engaged in, serving others and devoting ourselves to Mother and preparing ourselves for living cheerfully with self-surrender to the Divine will of Mother.

The fourth main point is that we should not make too much of little differences. We as the followers of the Mother's Lodge should have a much wider outlook as the follower of a much higher and universal conception of God as universal Mother, full of Love and Mercy.

The fifth point is that we should not attribute any superiority we have over others, to anything but Mother's grace and not permit the notion of that superiority to turn to be the most venomous snake in our brains.

The sixth point is the firm belief that the intensity of Mother's return of Love to us or Mother's Grace, is dependent on (1) How far our conception about Mother is universal; (2) How far we serve and love others and (3) How far differences and superiority complex and every trace of pride and hatred have vanished.

The seventh main point is that there is no depth from which a man cannot rise by Mother's Grace. None should despair. To live cheerfully in spite of whatever one is, with the conviction that nothing is  irreparable in the Mother's refugee realm, is one of the first requirements.

The eighth main point is that we should not cheat ourselves, our Guru and our God. Cheating one's self is more harmful than cheating the whole world.

The ninth main point is that we should not be wastefully prattling about God and religion, unless we are determined to have them. If we have no faith in either, Serving and Loving Mother's children is quite enough of religion for us to commence with, and we should not feel ourselves to be really any worse off than so many religious hypocrites.

The tenth main point is that one is religious to the extent he practises the requirments of religion and not to the extent of his knowledge or exhibition about religion.

Space does not permit mentioning here the different beliefs of one who wants to proceed on the path of the Universal Mother, and the readers are advised to go through the Theories and Principles of the Mother's Lodge with a subtle sense of understanding. Suffice it to say that for Mother's followers, progress in religion is a fully scientific process based on reason and one's own practice and experience under the guidance of Guru and Grace of Mother, with a sincerity of heart and an understanding of what is done and a very close observation of the results achieved.

None can help us unless we are prepared to exert. It is as solid a work as putting one brick on another to build a mansion. None can do that for us. Not even the Grace of Mother. Mother and Guru will enable you, to do in one-hundredth time with one-hundredth of troubles what others without a Guru or Mother's Grace can never do, but we have to build our house ourselves. We have to pass through ordeals. We cannot escape them. What Mother will help us about, is our ability to carry our burden and our safe coming out of the ordeal. But ordeals, trials and tests we shall not escape. “To be better and perfect,” is the goal of the Māi-ists. “Not running away from temptations but to be steady, strengthening ourselves with every preparedness to suffer till we get temptation proof, and Daivik-Sampatti (prosperity of divinity) is completely attained.”

With a very clear understanding as to the universality of the Mother, with a strong conviction that Mother's Grace could not be had by making business with Her in seclusion while continuing dealings with the world in the same former unworthy manner as best suits us, with an established conclusion that we are religious only to the extent we practise religion and not preach or praise, with a clear eye opening that we have to build our mansion ourselves and with cheerful faith and confidence in that “what mother does is for our best,” the Mother's follower should take to worship.

By their worshipping, they are not any the more religious. They are simply armouring themselves, praying for Grace and thanking for what they are. A Māi-ist should not claim double benefit. He should jealously guard his treasure of merit (Punyam) which  should not leak through his desire of receiving praises and renown as “religious.”

If Mâi-ists are enjoined to secrecy, it is in this sense and not in the sense of monopolising. Just the reverse of monopolizing, a Māi-ist has greater merit by the spread of Mother's Ideal than by secret secluded worship.

Secrecy for Māi-ists is no conservatism and means nothing more than observing silence for keeping at times the “indubitable appearance of a boobism (like that of Jada-Bharat) to evade all distractions, while striving for discovering some Truth, or attaining Mother's Grace or recollecting some Truth, or attaining GURU'S Grace or recollecting Divine Knowledge.

Secrecy has to be observed when it is necessary to be passing as an incognito, or to be giving a slip by acknowledging ignorance or defeat whenever one is approached by another who has an evil motive or who is undeserving to be confided with the secret or who is unable to preserve the sanctity of the sacred teachings, or by a mere curiosity seeker.

Jada-Bharat was a Hindu saint performing penance in a forest. One day he was caught by the servants of the king Rāhugan passing over the place, who considered him to be a savage aborigine to carry the king's palanquin. Jada-Bharat took no objection nor revealed to the king who he was. The king however, while being carried, began to get jerks and on inquiry knew that Jada-Bharat had his heart so much full of love even for ants on the way, that he had to walk by jumping lest he might crush them. The king recognised him, on further inquiry, to be one of the highest living saints and prostrate before him, took him to his palace and worshipped him.

A Māi-ist cannot be all the while fattening himself with getting. He must give. If you are capable of giving and have what you desire to give, do give unfailingly and in all ways. Let your own salvation be delayed. Not to give is selfishness, although spiritual, often white-washed to look as modesty and humility.

There are millions to whom you can give if you will it. It is everybody's concern to see that religiosity is upheld, and not only of the saffron-robed and fat-fed. “Be perfect before preaching,” is not in harmony with the Mother's Ideal. The only thing is, you must be sincere and you must actually have what you desire to give (spirituality, knowledge, divinity spark, practice procedure, or any other similar thing). The perfect are rarely even understood. In the spiritual journey, march on and do take with you all those that willingly follow. While climbing over a hill, you take rest when you are entirely exhausted. There are some of you who are then busy with “ how much remains”, etc., whereas there are few who during their resting period turn their face and guide others that are groping in the dark and wading their way through thorns and brambles. The latter ones have the true Mai-istic mentality,
It has been difficult for me to remain strictly within the limits of the subject-matter conveyed by the Caption “Hindu Conception of Mother.” This has been naturally so, as Māi conception has no doubt its origin in the Mother conception of the Hindus, which is one of the distinctive features of Hinduism.

Both conceptions are so very inter-related and interpenetrating. The transition of one conception to the other has been, of course, rather too quick and abrupt in the concluding pages (after 48th), and I have been tempted away towards evolving out the Mãi conception, dealing with its different aspects, viz., the necessity of the feminine element and its special suitability in the changed circumstances, the short scripture of Mother's Ideal and the entirely different outlook of a Māi-ist, about true Religion and true Religiosity. Of course, this could not have been permissible under the caption, but I trust it is not difficult for relevancy seeking readers to be charitably disposed.

~ Extract from the book: Mai  and Mai Sahasranama Volume 1