Fire

 अग्निमीळे पुरोहितं यज्ञस्य देवमृत्तिजम् ।
होतारं रत्नधातरम् ॥१॥

om, agnim ide purohitam yajnasya devamrittijam
hotaaram ratnadhaataram

we praise the sacred fire, priest of the sacrifice, sustainer of the order of the gods
offerer of oblations to the gods, bestower of gifts to man

– Rig Veda 1.1
The first hymn of the first book of the Rig Veda, possibly the oldest text of humanity, invokes the most alive element of nature -fire, that which comes alive in death. Fire is life, for it is continually aflame. It crackles, gives warmth, illuminates. It is death, for it rises from death, from burning away the old, upon the ashes of destruction, signalling the end of that from which it arises.

It is also the inner fire, the flame, that quiet passion that burns within us, guiding, calling, deepening our vocation, our life in this world.

As one writes this, an incense stick burns at the other corner of the room, its tip aflame in golden, letting out vapours that bring an ancient scent to the house.

The fire within and the fire outside are the same.

A thousand years after the Rig Veda, the Shakyamuni Buddha, the Blessed One, would teach his disciples the truth of transcience, evoking the symbol of fire again. Once again, it was a fire that illuminated the inevitable dying away of all there is, but also a fire that liberated us from our bondage to all there is.

“O bhikkus, all is aflame.

The eye is aflame. The forms are aflame.

The ear is aflame. The sounds are aflame.

The tongue is aflame. The tastes are aflame.

The body is aflame. The sensations are aflame.”

– Adittapariyaya Sutta

The fire of transformation, the light amidst our darkness – the ancients lived with a deep reverence for this, remembering, acting, living, loving the fire of life.

 

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~ by tdcatss on June 19, 2017.

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