[Advaita-l] Advaitic Foods

Venkatesh Murthy vmurthy36 at gmail.com
Wed Dec 15 21:44:55 CST 2010

Fish cannot be Sattvika even if Easterners eat it.  Medical studies
says fish is bad for health because it has mercury.  Sattvika cannot
be nonveg items.  If Ramakrishna said this it is not correct.

Kindly analyse Geeta 15.14 Aham Vaishvanaro Bhutva and other Slokas
description of Sattvika, Rajasika and Tamasika foods in Geeta.  What
is your opinion of them?

Aham Vaishvanaro Bhutva Sloka we say every time we have meals. The
Agni in the stomach is Jatharagni the Vaishvanara. To that Agni we
offer Havis the food we eat. He digests the food we eat. The food
eating is a Yajna. In this Yajna we should offer Sattvika items. How
can we put Rajasika and Tamasika items like fish?



On Wed, Dec 15, 2010 at 11:41 PM, V Subrahmanian
<v.subrahmanian at gmail.com> wrote:
>> ----------------------------------------
>> > Date: Wed, 15 Dec 2010 18:27:11 +0530
>> > From: vmurthy36 at gmail.com
>> > To: advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
>> > Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Advaitic Foods
>> >
>> > The reference to stale food is directly found in Baudhayana Dharma
>> > Sutra 1 1.2 3 about peculiar customs in South India.
>> >
>> > http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/sbe14/sbe1435.htm
>> >
>> "... to eat in the company of an uninitiated person, to eat in the
>> company of one's wife, to eat stale food, to marry the daughter of
>> a maternal uncle or of a paternal aunt."
>> These are described as customs unique to the southern part of India.
> I have heard an accomplished Vedic Pandit (GhanapAThi) say that in his days
> of adhyayanam at the Gurukulam, the norm was the breakfast is 'pazhayadhu'
> (previous night's cooked rice combined with buttermilk, with perhaps some
> ginger and salt mixed).
> There is one occasion that I have observed when on the 'kanu pongal' (said
> to be actually kANum pongal)(the day after the main pongal festival) in the
> early morning women offer certain food stuff to God.  The items offered
> include: rice cooked the previous day, mixed with curds and kept overnight,
> left-over sweet pongal, vaDai, sugarcane piece and ground raw turmeric.  All
> these will be offered in the open, in a small banana leaf by the women
> before they bathe.
> Local customs being the topic of derisive comment is a typical subject for
> Swami Vidyaranya's categorisation as ' loka vAsanA'.  In the
> 'वासनाक्षयप्रकरणम्’ of the जीवन्मुक्तिविवेकः’, he says:
> Quote // The attachment that the races of mankind develop, each in its own
> sphere, towards traditional customs and manners of their respective
> countries and communities, as well as towards their mother-tongue,
> irrespective of the correct or incorrect form of words used and such other
> kind of attachment may be broadly cited as examples of this.
> ......Similarly there is slandering prevalent on a large scale, with
> reference to local peculiarities.  The southern BrahmaNa-s upbraid their
> northern fellows, well-versed in Vedic lore, as flesh-eaters; the northern
> BrahmaNa-s retaliate by finding fault with the southern custom of marrying
> the daughter of a maternal uncle and of carrying earthenware in their
> travels.
> The bahvRcha-s, Rgvedi-s, of the AshvalAyana shAkha look upon the
> KANvashAkhaa, yajurvedi-s, as inferior to theirs; while the Vajasaneyin-s,
> yajurvedi-s, think otherwise.  Thus, from the learned down to women and
> ignorant herdsmen, is found this general tendency to glorify one's own
> family, section, relatives, gods and so on, and to belittle those of
> others.  It has been said with this in mind:
> // 'The pure man is looked upon as a devil, the clever man as presumptuous,
> the man of forbearance as weak, the strong man as cruel, the absent-minded
> man as a thief, and the handsome man as lewd.  Who can please the world!!'
> Also 'there is no expedient within knowledge wherewith one can satisfy all
> people.  One's own good should, by all possible means, be looked to.  What
> can the myriad-tongued world do?' //
> Looking, therefore, upon the vAsanA of public opinion, लोकवासना’ as entirely
> impure, books treating of liberation, मोक्षशास्त्रम्, advise the foremost of
> yogin-s to treat censure and praise alike.  // Unquote.
> The gist of the above is: //One's own good should, by all possible means, be
> looked to.  What can the myriad-tongued world do?'//
> The observation by Sri Venkatesh Murthy //But my original request was if any
> member experience proper concentration on Advaitic thoughts after eating
> Sattvika food.// cannot be answered unless one decides what constitutes
> saattvika food. The definition of sattvik food can vary from place to place,
> customs, etc.  For example, the Bengali-Brahmin custom of eating fish was
> prevalent in Sri Ramakrishna's family.  Yet, his attaining nirvikalpa
> samadhi and attaining Advaitic sAkShAtkAra through the initiation of
> Totapuri is there in recorded history. Here is a couple of sayings of Sri
> Ramakrishna (from The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna) :
> //"Hindus, Mussalmans, Christians, Saktas, Saivas, Vaishnavas, the
> Brahmajnanis of the time of the rishis, and you, the Brahmajnanis of modern
> times, all seek the same object. A mother prepares dishes to suit the
> stomachs of her children. Suppose a mother has five children and a *fish* is
> bought for the family. She doesn't cook pilau or kalia for all of them. All
> have not the same power of digestion; so she prepares a simple stew for
> some. But she loves all her children equally.
> "Do you know my attitude? I love all the preparations of *fish*. I have a
> womanly nature. (*All laugh*.) I feel myself at home with every dish — fried
> *fish*, *fish* cooked with turmeric powder, pickled *fish*. And further, I
> equally relish rich preparations like *fish*-head, kalia, and pilau. (*All
> laugh*.)
> "Do you know what the truth is? God has made different religions to suit
> different aspirants, times, and countries.//
> //MASTER (*to Vijay and the others*): "Four desires have come into my mind.
> I shall *eat* *fish* curry cooked with egg-plant. I shall visit Shivanath.
> The devotees will repeat the name of Hari over their beads, and I shall
> watch them. And the Tantrik devotees will drink consecrated wine, eight
> annas' worth, on the
> ashtami*<http://www.ramakrishnavivekananda.info/gospel/volume_2/29_durga_puja.htm#blank>day,
> and I shall watch them and salute them."//
> Regards,
> subrahmanian.v
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