The Sensitivity of Hinduism to ‘Karmic Sufferings’ in Human Life
The deepest concern of Hinduism, the world’s oldest religion, has always been for liberating man from the burden of his colossal spiritual-ignorance. The traditional name for this liberation is Moksha. As this great and final liberation was held to be the summum bonum of life by the Hindus, this lofty goal was invariably approached by awakening man, in a step-wise fashion to his own sorrow and encouraging him to seek, in the first instance, the lesser liberation from the burden of all his ‘karmic-sufferings’, on the physical & mental planes. ‘Sufferings’ which though are truly horrendous are still strangely considered by man to be only ‘part and parcel’ of his earthly sojourn! [See also Part VI, Sec. 8, C.G. Jung’s words therein]
This is not to say that the other religions of the world, did not address themselves sufficiently to this central problem of human existence. Rather, Hinduism has shown for thousands of years extraordinary sensitivity to this aspect of suffering in human lives and no avenues of Sadhana [spiritual practices like Yoga], Bhakti [devotion to God], Jnana [the path of reaching God through enquiry and understanding] & Tantra [techniques] have been left unexplored, in this part of the world, for finding various solutions, for the eradication of suffering, which is an inescapable aspect of human life. Buddhism and Jainism, which sprouted from the mother matrix of ancient Hindu society, have also deeply shared the very same concern in commensurate measure.
However, in the course of the last three centuries or so, on account of the world-wide impact of the Western civilisation, this profound sensitivity on the part of the Eastern Religions has been veiled over, by the mirage of sensory-pleasures, comforts & luxuries, which have all come to us as ‘blessings, pertaining to the mundane spheres of Artha and Kama‘ from the Western civilisation.
In these changed circumstances, unless our ‘time of reckoning arrives in the Vimsottari Dasa system of ‘clock-time’ governing our destiny, we may never be able to learn the lesson that ‘suffering’ is an inescapable part of our human existence. The ancient societies had the wisdom & the understanding to cope with these ‘bad-times’ and learn from their misfortunes; while the modern Western civilisation, with its indifference to the spiritual dimension of life, knows not how to deal with the enormous burden of this karmic-suffering. It is for this precise reason, that nearly 50 years ago, the European spiritual psycho-analyst C.G. Jung, had bemoaned this spiritual incapacity of the modern West in dealing with these inescapable sufferings. [See Sec. 8, Part VI and C.G. Jung’s quotation therein]
As against such a Western scenario, in India especially, apart from giving us insights and wisdom into the operation of the forces of karma and ‘destiny’ in our lives; Vedic astrology had always also given us powerful Remedial-Measures for substantially alleviating all such sufferings & set-backs in every sphere of human endeavour. Thus, it is through this important branch of remedial astrology, that VA has so much to offer us, as practical means for the alleviation of our sufferings- irrespective of whether these sufferings are transpiring only on the physical plane, or are confined entirely to the subtler mental plane alone.
In all the ancient civilizations of the world, whether it was in the Chinese, Chaldean, Egyptian, Greek, Arabian or in the Vedic; astrology of the ancients had always retained this eternal character of being a system of subtle knowledge about man’s karma and ‘destiny’. However, it has only been in India, the home of Vedas and Sanatana Dharma – that Vedic astrology has maintained its continuity – albeit in an attenuated and distorted form – as a ‘living body of spiritual-knowledge’ intended for the alleviation of misfortunes & sufferings in our lives.