On hearing from Uddhava that Sage Maitreyi is the spiritual Guru destined for him, Vidura reached Haridwara where Sage Maitreyi lived. He had some questions on the mode of life and put forth the following questions to the sage.
1. In this world people do many things to get happiness. But they never reach their perfect happiness as more desires lead to more unhappiness. Please let me know the course of life a man should follow.
2. Tell me about the great devotees of the Lord, how their hearts and minds get purified and how they attain the state of perfection.
3. How did God create the world and how is he sustaining it?
4. How does God create different forms and how does he dissolve it at the time of dissolution?
5. Tell me more about the excellences of the Lord and his various incarnations for the welfare of the world.
Vidura was anxious to hear about the Lord’s excellences as he was thoroughly tired of hearing about only worldly matters.
Sage Maitreyi was extremely pleased with Vidura’s devotion to Lord Hari and revealed to him that Vidura was an incarnation of Lord Yama. Yama who administers death and after-death punishment to all beings for their sins was once cursed by Sage Mandavya and it is due to that curse that Vidura has taken a human birth as the son of Vyasa Deva.
In the beginning God alone existed as the seer, as the pure spirit. Maya is the power of the witness of the seer and it has got the dual nature of being in the causes as well as the effects. Maya along with Time created the Mahatatva. From the Mahatatva came the I-thoughts which constitutes the mind, senses and intelligence. Then He created the pancha bhootas – sky, air, fire, water and earth. Then He created a cosmic form called Virat Purusha which formed the basis of the whole universe of living and non-living things. This Virat is the cosmic power of everything in the universe, also called the spiritual source or the super soul.
Vidura asked, “How can the living spirits be subject to the loss of bliss and plunge into the world of suffering if he is actually a pure spirit?”
Sage Maitreyi replies, “Just like in a dream a person can experience his own head being cut off the Atman experiences a change of its nature without that change being factual. The Atman which living spirits experience is the self identified as the body and thus it is subject to defects of the body. When the mind and intelligence focus on devotion to the Lord and is bathed in Godly love he will realize his true nature as different from the bodily nature.”
The next post in this series will contain the rest of Sage Maitreyi’s answers to Vidura
21 thoughts on “Vidura meets Maitreyi”
Nice story. I never knew Vidhur was the reincarnation of Yama. QUite informative this post is. Thanks Suba!
So very beautiful.
I understand Sage Maitreyi to say that we are not “in” our body, our body is in us.. in our mind..
Yes mind is the focus of spirituality according to Sage Maitreyi’s statement. My guru also subscribes to the same view. You can read it at this link
That’s wonderful. I am actually doing this same exposition right now. Please continue.
Hmm – Refresher for me, Jairam! This reincarnation of Yama as Vidura also accounts for his closeness with Yudhishtir who is the son of Yama. It dates back to the curse of the sage who was impaled as a punishment – according to Yama – for his having tortured insects during his childhood, which the sage decries as unjust (since the so-called crime as committed when he was not of an age to know the difference between right and wrong) and, so, curses Yama to be born as a human being, does it not?
Yes true. You can read more about the story at Sambhava Parva of Mahabharata http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/m01/m01108.htm and http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/m01/m01109.htm
Waiting to read the next part and I was not aware of Vidura bring the re-incarnation of the Lord of Death.
@Kalpana, boredsuba is hard at work on the next post 🙂
I wasn’t aware about this story exactly the way you told. Thanks.
@Suganda, will convey your gratitude to boredsuba
Another captivating story that makes a person think. ♥
@Kathy, absolutely, all these stories from the epic always make us contemplate inwards into ourselves, don’t they?
Suba you should write more and more. Brilliant 🙂
@Bhagyashree, well, that is the intention for now, although it must be said that boredsuba will be taking a break of approximately 10-15 day as she is going out of town 🙂 Thank you so much for the encouragement, really appreciate it a lot 🙂
new information on the incarnation of Yama. Eagerly waiting for the next post… 🙂
@Pupz, as you are well aware, the whole of next week, boredsuba will be visiting her mother and you as well :), so you will have to wait for a while for the next post in this series
The last answer is so wonderfully spoken. To realise that atman is but a dream and its transient nature exhibited in death is something which makes one realise why then the drama of life? I keep reading on this in a lot of places, yet to find answers 😀
ooh! this is a new one for me too!! 🙂
Thank you for sharing!!
@pixie, the credit for this post goes to my wife boredsuba 🙂
my compliments to your wife 🙂
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