In vedic astrology human births are classified as Deva Gana, Manushya Gana and Rakshasa Gana. It does not mean that those who are born under Rakshasa gana are demonic in nature. Among other implications, such classifications are usually taken into account while matching horoscopes of prospective brides and grooms.
Otherwise also we have lots of examples in our puranas where someone like Prahlad who was born in Rakshasha clan, became a great devotee of Lord Visnu. His divine nature surpassed those of the Devas. On the other hand Indra, the king of the Gods, is notorious for his mischiefs. His obsession for pleasure was such that he was perennially in search of beautiful women. He did not spare even the wives of Rishis. He was cursed time and again.
This story is from Brihadaranyaka Upanishad. When the devas approached Lord Brahma, his advice to them was Da. Here Da implies Dama – or self control. Lord Brahma advises Gods to exercise self control. Gods are pleasure oriented. Only self control can redeem them. Gods have immense power. Unless they exercise self control the balance of the universe may get disturbed beyond redemption.
When manushya or human beings approached him, his advice to them was Da. Here Da means dana or doing charity, giving in donation, or sharing one’s resources with others. Human beings are miserly by nature. Hoarding comes easy to them. They find the greatest pleasure in accumulating things. Human beings, irrespective of their age, are afflicted by greed. We find human beings greedy even after accumulating wealth for fourteen generations. Unless dana is emphasized again and again human beings wouldn’t care for others.Human beings must share. By sharing human life gets enriched. By sharing and caring, earth itself can become the heaven that the Gods would vie for.
When the rakshashas or the demons approached Brahma, his advice to them was Da. Here Da means daya or kindness. Demons are cruel by nature. Hence, they need to be reminded again and again that they need to be kind and compassionate. Due to their cruelty, first they will destroy others and then they will destroy one another.
In reality it is impossible to find a being, who is purely of a deva, or a manushya or a rakshasha by nature. We all have these negative qualities of being pleasure oriented, being greedy and being cruel in varying degrees.
There are some who are generous. But when it comes to pleasure they are over indulgent and there comes a time they find themselves bound by a vicious cycle of addiction from where they find it difficult to come out of.
There are some who are very kind in their behaviour. They may not go about doing harm to others. But at the same time they may be greedy. There may be people who are epitomes of self control. But they may be very cruel to others in word and action.
So the ultimate lesson of Lord Brahma is that – let everyone be aware of one’s pre-dominant negative inclination. One’s redemption lies in heeding the advice of Brahma linked to that dominant negative inclination. If you find yourself being dominantly pleasure oriented, the key word for you is self control and so on.
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