ARE WE THERE YET???
With all the things that's happening around us, let's go through the checklist, written some 5000 years ago though Bhagavad Gita, on whether we are behaving the way described in the holy scriptures.
PROGRESS OF KALI-YUGA
Afterwards, due to the effect of adverse Time, all excellence's like Truth, cleanliness, forbearance, compassion, longevity, memory and strength will decay. In the age of Kali, wealth takes the place of high birth, virtuous conduct and character in estimating a man's worth. Might will become right, being accepted as the factor determining what is Dharma and what is justice. Mutual attraction will become the sole consideration for marital alliance. Business / trade will become tantamount to the practice of fraud.
Skill in lovemaking will be deemed as the chief excellence in man and woman. The sacred thread will become the whole distinctive feature of a Brahmana. External marks will become the only insignia of Ashramas (Life-phases). Justice will be dispensed depending on the economic status. If a man is adept in abusive vocabulary, he will be considered a scholar. Poverty will constitute proof of guilt and ostentation and show will become the hallmark of character. Mating will be looked upon as marriage (to the exclusion of tradition and ordainment); bathing will be significant only hygienically and not ritually. A holy water (Tirta) will mean only water at a distance (and not the Guru near at hand). A well-made up tress will become the criterion for beauty.
Men will live to eat and not eat to live. Audacious speech will be the substitute for truth. The man, who maintains the family by any means, will be deemed resourceful and respectable. Dharma will be maintained solely for reputation. When humanity degenerates this way, whoever is powerful amongst Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas or Sudras will become the rulers. These greedy and cruel rulers, following the ways of brigands and plunderers, will lay their hands on the womenfolk and wealth of their subjects, who, therefore, will be compelled to take shelter in mountains and forests.
Oppressed by heavy taxation and absence of rainfall, people will have to subsist on greens, roots, flesh, honey, fruits, flowers, tubers and the like. Reduced to misery, they will fight amongst themselves and perish. Stricken by hunger, thirst and disease and distressed with worrying thoughts, men in Kali will be short-lived, their life-span being only twenty to thirty years.
When due to the evil influence of Kali, men become physically weak, when the Dharma of the Varnas and Ashramas inculcated by the Vedas perishes, when the ways of the atheists and their teachings become wide-spread, when kings degenerate into mere robbers, while men in general begin to indulge in theft, falsehood and vain slaughter, when all Varnas come to the level of Sudras, when cows degenerate to the level of goats, when monasteries and religious settlements become mere places of enjoyment like homes, when sex relationship comes to be recognized as the only relationship, when plants get dwarfed, when trees become small and shade-less, when clouds begin to emit only lightning, when homes become devoid of holy rites - thus with the advancement of Kali, when men begin to be animal-like, the Lord will incarnate again in a form of Sattva for the protection of Dharma.
-------------- INCARNATION OF KALKI & ADVENT OF KRITAYUGA --------------
The incarnation of Vishnu, the Supreme Lord and the Preceptor of all beings, is meant for the protection of the Dharma of holy men and to liberate them from the bondage of Karma. God will incarnate as Kalki in the house of a well-known headman of the village of Sambala, called Vishnuyasas. Seated on a very fast moving horse named Devadatta, given by Indra and the other Devas, Kalki, the Lord of all, endowed with the eight yogic powers (Ashtaiswarya) and of matchless splendor, will course through the earth at high speed, destroying the countless plunderers parading as kings. When all the evildoers have been uprooted, the people of towns and villages will have the contact of the fragrant air of the unguents (sandal paste etc.) of the body of Vasudeva, which will render their minds very pure. When Vasudeva, the embodiment of strength and purity, is lodged in their hearts, they will procreate progeny that are mentally and physically strong. From the time of the incarnation of the worshipful Lord, the Lord of Dharma, Krita Yuga will begin and a race of men with Sattva Guna dominating, will be generated. When the moon, sun and Jupiter come in a single house with the constellation Pushya, then Krita Yuga will begin.
In Kali Yuga, only a fourth part of the attributes of Dharma, such as Truthfulness etc. would survive. Even that fourth part of the whole would decay day by day due to dominance of Adharma attributes and at the end of the Kali Yuga, even that (one) fourth part of Dharma would have vanished. People of Kali Yuga would be niggardly Lobha, of blemished conduct, Durachara, bereft of compassion, would quarrel over purposeless objects, devoid of lustre 'Tejas', or poverty-stricken, would be greedy and will have as their chiefs Sudra and fishermen.
The Gunas (disposition of Nature) will be influenced by the Kali Yuga. (In Kali Yuga itself, in the mind of the Jiva, the three (Sattva, Rajas, Tamas) dispositions will be alternating and under the prompting (propensity) of the Kali Yuga, variations take place in the functioning of the Gunas). When the mind, intellect and senses dwell in Sattva in a large measure, due to which attraction would ensue in enlightenment and Tapas, then (even in Kali) the existence of Krita Yuga should be seen. When the Jivas are attracted to desire-prompted Karmas, then the Rajas dominated Treta Yuga should be seen. When miserliness, Lobha, non-happiness, self-importance (self-worshipfulness), pride, jealousy, attraction for desire-oriented Karmas occur, perceive then the advent of Rajas -Tamas dominant Dvapara Yuga. When Lie, delusion, indolence, sleep, 'Himsa, sorrow, anguish, illusion, fear and helplessness arise, it should be realised that Tamas dominated Kali age has dawned. Due to the effect of Kali, people will be dull-witted (dull-headed), luckless, gluttonous (eating in disregard of time), in penury and lustful, in addition to womenfolk being adulteresses and of evil conduct.
Countries will abound in thieves. The Vedas will be perverted by atheists, the rulers will swallow their subjects (oppressing the subjects with heavy taxes and the like), Brahmana, Kshatriya and Vaisya would involve themselves only in sense gratification and livelihood pursuits.
Brahmacharins will be bereft of Sastric ordained rites - purities, householders will resort to alms-seeking, Tapasvis – Vanaprastas - will take to residences in villages and Sannyasins will be attracted to wealth. Further, the womenfolk will be of short stature (Dwarf), gluttonous, bearing many children, devoid of shame, always addicted to cruel speech, prolific, hypocratic and very obstinate.
Traders and businessmen will be low-minded, obfuscating, and doing their avocation of buying and selling likewise. Also, they will resort to prohibited path even when there is no danger to life/livelihood. Employees will desert even benevolent masters when they are no more affluent. Also, masters will abandon servants employed for generations, if they are in danger (like sickness) and so also abandon barren cows.
People in Kali-age, forsaking their own parents, brothers, well wishers and cousins, will take to relatives ensuing from wife's side and take counsel with wife's brothers and sisters. They will be debilitated and lustful. People in Kali will ever be frightened, afflicted by tax and the like, worried over failure of timely rains. Also, bereft of good clothes, wholesome food, healthy drinks, comfortable beds, pure wifely comforts, ordained bath and ornaments they will resemble ghosts and ghouls with parched lands / fields.
In Kali, people will fight even for a pittance, develop animosity and in the process, abandon friendliness and even give up or take lives, including those of their fold. People will be of unwholesome (low) nature, engaged in satiating stomach and male organ and will not look after the aged parents and able sons. In Kali-age, with their minds perverted by Pashandas (Pretenders), people will not worship the sole and exclusive preceptor of the Universe and the Supreme Lord 'Achyuta', whose lotus feet are bowed to by the Lords of all the worlds.
In Kali, people will not worship the Supreme Lord, by uttering/chanting whose names, people on the threshold of death, seized by sickness/diseases, who have fallen down or slipped, will be redeemed from the obstacles arising from their Karmas and attain to the shining realms. If the Supreme Lord enters the heart of man, such a man is redeemed from all the blemishes arising from Kali-effect through food, unholy place of residence and sense contacts. By being heard about, hymned about, meditated upon, worshiped or adored, the Lord enters into the heart of man and when He so enters, He destroys all the evil tendencies acquired over innumerable lives. Just like the fire removes the impurities from gold, the indwelling God removes the blemished tendencies of the Yogis. The totality of purity acquired by the mind when the divine presence is involved in the heart, cannot be accomplished by learning, austerities, Pranayama, by love towards all beings, holy births, Vratas, gifts and Mantra - Japa.
O Parikshit! You, who are at the threshold of death, maintain tranquility and install, by all means at your disposal, the Supreme Lord in your heart. By doing so, you will attain salvation. The Supreme Lord, Soul of souls, the support of all and to be meditated upon by men threatened with imminent death, gives Himself to such devotees (Saaroopyam). O King! This Kali, though the.repository of blemish 'Dosha', has got a very high virtue, viz. by the Nama Sankirtana of Krishna itself, man secures release from bondage and attains to the Feet of the Paramatma - Supreme Lord. Whatever is attained to in Kritayuga through meditation on Mahavishnu, through the sacrificial rites in Treta Yuga and through ritualistic worship in Dwapara Yuga, all that is accomplished - attained to - by Hari Kirtana itself in Kali Yuga. ('Krute Yat Ddhyatho Vishnu, Tretayam Yajato Makaha Yagam: Dwapare Paricharyayam Kalow Tat Harl Kirtanaha’)
Let the above be a reminder of where we are, and where we should be.
Om Namo Narayana.