*-B.L. Dhar

All the gates in the heaven were open today. The mood was somber. The weather was fine. The setting sun shone through patches of dissipating cloud and a mild breeze was blowing, lifting the ambience a few notches higher. Bright colors danced in myriad ways across the horizon painting geometrical designs. The nature was at its organizing best to jazz up the spirits of all the heavenly inmates so that the following moments are used in their best performance. A long table was set up and arrangements made to seat at least a thousand souls. Long necked silver flasks carrying nectar were placed on the table and tall crystal glasses lay in front of each chair. Trays full of delicious fruit of a hundred varieties were placed alongside and freshly baked bread in oval shaped baskets adorned the rest of the space. A mild fragrance of various flowers mingled in a frenzy of heady cocktails that swooned everyone around. Long curtains of silk flowed alongside the doors and fluttered in the mild breeze. Soft notes of musical instruments wafted along the breezy waves of air that smelt so heady and fragrant. A look overhead gave access to the blue domed sky adorned with twinkling stars. A host of bright white winged angels floated around the venue carrying feather fans of various colors. With a few gestures of their hands, sparks of color flew around leaving starry patterns floating around.

At the stroke of midnight, when the moon was directly above and the sun god had finally decided to park his chariot on the other side, a crescendo of voices began to be heard along the slopes leading on to the gates. Within minutes a throng of colorfully attired gods appeared entering the gates and noisily seated themselves in the chairs in front of the long table. The gentlemen gods were seen with their ladies and consorts and whispering loudly to each other so as to be heard. Their faces conveyed a bit of concern that this meeting was called up at short notice. Such short notice meetings were usually a matter of grave concern for everyone. The gods had to have a clean chit as regards their own departments and could be asked to explain any shortcomings for which they had to pay dearly if found wanting in any respect. Some gods were even punished with banishment from heaven to serve a period of service in the mortal world below amongst the ordinary living mortals. This would mean living a full span of life among the mortals and then return after facing the death god. This was a painful experience that they did not want to happen at any time. During such stints in the mortal world some could even be recalled at short notices leaving their life half lived and their mortal friends and relatives in grief. The worst part of it was that during this sojourn in the mortal world they were not allowed to remember anything of their celestial status.

Shortly all the chairs were occupied signaling a full attendance and all eyes were now looking up at the head of the table where three chairs were placed. These were high backed ornamental chairs decorated in ornate gold brocade and placed at a slightly higher elevation so that all eyes could directly see its occupants. Soon a conch shell sound in a loud pitch was heard signaling the arrival of the celebrity. Firstly three senior gold winged angels arrived and placed themselves right behind the high backed chairs. Then they announced the arrival of Gods: “Brahma”, “Vishnu” and “Mahesh” and bowed their heads in reverence as the Gods arrived and seated themselves at the head of the table. There was a hushed silence all over and not a soul stirred as the Gods surveyed the scene in front and were convinced of total attendance. The Angels gave a call for prayer and soon small children appeared as if on a cue from all over the arena and encircled the gathering. In the backdrop of soft music the prayers of the heaven were recited by the children that lasted for almost a half hour. The song was mainly verses praising the Gods and invoking a blessing from them that the celestial souls be granted peace. Prayers done, the children floated out in all directions and soon the angels announced the beginning of the meeting. Brahma - the creator, Vishnu - the protector, and Mahesh - the destroyer spoke in the order of their seniority and at length delved into the subject of today’s meet.
BRAMHA: You all know that the world was created as a means to accommodate the souls at one place. They were asked to live in harmony and respect for each other. That there be a fair ground for each species to live and survive and at the end of their term show up for an assessment of their lives. Those who qualified in all the parameters of life were open to stay back in the heavens and become a part of you all. This practice has been going on from one yug to the other and found tenable. Among the souls we placed a species, called humans, in our own image and caliber. They are blessed with the prowess to think and protect the others who have a lesser degree of mental balance and analysis.

VISHNU: As long as the species was allowed to live in the world after a creation by Lord Brahma, it was incumbent upon me to ensure that I look after their fair survival and be their protector. That they do not falter in their design was time and again warned by sending you as angels and apostles of faith so that they remain in touch with the reality of life and proof of the existence of God. Most of them responded well but there were instances when this order was dislodged and faith was overcome by fear. What we now see is that the human, left there by design as a model protector of other species, has now turned out to be more of an animalistic creature than the so called animals themselves.

MAHESH: I have to intervene in the scheme of things and identify the guilty and punish them for their misdeeds. I have been of late very busy offering punishments as the violations continue to rise. I see a pattern emerging that requires a speedy correction. A reign of terror is let loose by some bad souls and it has been observed that the guidelines are manipulated to create chaos and confusion in the minds of the earth souls. Those who are pure also get in the cog mire of malice and get stained. This is a gross violation of the basic principals of life and very much demand a correction. This, my fellow heaven souls, is the reason why this meeting is called to order to find a lasting solution.

At the outset we have to debate the performance of the earth souls, which has been reported as dismal. We have concluded that this could be corrected in two ways. One where the whole earth species is annihilated and a new one created. This would be an unscheduled and early end of “Kalyug” and the beginning of another “yug” that would stand on the principals of purity. Second alternative is to give another chance to the earth souls to correct themselves and their behavior so that all of them live in perfect harmony.

Now we need not effort much to take a recourse to the first option. The earth will be destroyed by MAHESH in a manner befitting the present incumbents. The whole earth species will be annihilated including the wicked humans. BRAHMA will then create a whole new world that will initially be inhabited by pure souls from amongst you who are presently living here in the heavens. We may have to send all of you first to start a whole new world and you will be recalled after the human species is once again established afresh. We shall take a look at the design and form of the other species and evolve these in such a manner that a coexistence is ensured.

The second option of reform is a bit tricky in the sense that we have to send an emissary from here in the guise of a god man who will try change the mindset of the earth souls and if successful spare the destruction of the species altogether. The only difficulty here is that the earth souls will consider this god figure as kind of a new religion and start the sectarian wars all over again. We have had this experience already in the last millennia when we sent several gods on purifying missions and ended up with the crises of manifold faiths springing up as a result. The human mind is getting into intricate maladies with new concepts taking over. Scientific knowledge is being put to an uncomfortable use with the discovery of new means of warfare. Tools of war are routinely created and tested upon each other. The uninvolved earth souls do not register a protest. We would definitely have heard and made amends and punished the guilty. The humans have made progress in the field of medicine but they manipulate the heavenly designs by even permitting marriage of two souls of the same sex. They forget this is a mental imbalance requiring a correction rather than it being a moral right. The laws of nature relating to the field of procreation are grossly violated. We have warned them with the creation of diseases like AIDS but sexual malpractices are rampant all across the globe. They try create souls in the laboratory which by nature is a function governed by our ideology and concept of the balancing of species. The humans are becoming more indifferent in comparison to animals that have blissfully maintained the laws.

In short we have to take a decision today as to what form of punishment is practical. Your vote in this regard will greatly help us in reaching a safe conclusion. So at the close of your meal you will please leave your vote at the exit gates and we shall be amply rewarded with your decision. BRAHMA, VISHNU and MAHESH bless you all and promise that your wishes will be respected. Today’s meeting stands concluded.

The sun started its journey again through the skies and the soft rising rays touched the feet of the trinity Gods, BRAHMA, VISHNU and MAHESH. They just concluded the count of the votes and with a sigh of relief looked at the dispensation given by the celestial gods to the earth souls once again. The decision was unanimous that the earth souls be given one more chance in righting their wrongs in all the fields of their life. However, it was clear that sending a representative from the heavens as a savior is necessary so that the human race is once again reminded of its obligations towards the whole species including the earth itself, which also needs protection against destruction ordained by man. Humans will have to learn to respect the earth and its environment. It is only hoped that the earth souls do not treat this heavenly intervention as a personal faith of some other religion being born.

B. L. Dhar was born and educated at Srinagar. Did Master's degree in Mathematics. Took up appointment with the Civil Aviation Sector of the G.O.I. as a gazzetted officer and later joined the PSU, Airports Authority of India (AAI) from where he retired as General Manager in 2000.

At present residing at Delhi with frequent visits to the US and Europe where his kith and kin reside. Has interest in writing.

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Mr. Dhar has given a splended description of the Trinity on which Hindu cosmos and mythology rest.
Added By pushkar ganjoo
I have a small point which the author used in his article, that man is made in the image of God. This is an abrahamic injunction not Hindu. We worship Hanumaan which is not a man but man-monkey or whatever. We see God's image in all creations. For the abrahmics apart from man nothing else has a soul. For us soul is present in all life and through reincarnation should progresses to man's birth.
Added By Anil Bhanot