The Transformative Process of Destruction

Ancient India shares a lot of wisdom behind the concept of Destruction. Constant Destruction is the reason behind Creation. More than complete annihilation, destruction is rather a transformative process. One form changes to another and so the perception of the changed form is destroyed. Yet, in line with the conservation of matter and energy, nothing is destroyed forever. Nature and Time acts on things and concepts to change them from one form to another.


(Image Credit: Stefan)

Film and Concept of Samsara

The Trimurti of Creation (Brahma), Sustenance (Vishnu) and Destruction (Maheshwara) are not separate entities. They are manifestations of the same integrated whole. When we look at the principles behind the cycle of creation and destruction, the idea of integration becomes clear. Imagine a film that is being played. Technically we know it is a group of frames that move before our eyes that trick us into believing we are seeing a continuous representation of life itself. The frames that have moved before are “destroyed” and frames that are to come are “created”.

Consider the idea of film with more depth in line with the discussion of Samsara. If the past frames are not moved out, the future frames cannot come in view. Only with Destruction, do we have any space for Creation. In between the phase of Creation and Destruction, there is a momentary illusion of “Life” or Sustenance where a particular frame is lit up to bring it to view. It is this short span of Life that we hold on very dearly which forms root of all our experience.

Look at our life journey so far. The Childhood in us was destroyed to pave way for our Teens. Our Teens died to create Youth and Youth dies to form Old Age. Eventually this very body itself dies to transform into something else. If lucky, we may come back with a Human Experience and go through this cycle again. Something in us is dying every moment and something is created every moment. We are constantly transforming every moment. A conscious effort to transform our body and mind to a higher plane of evolution will make our life experience more fulfilling.

Why Destruction?

We have heard that God is merciful. Why should there be the Destructive Tandava of Shiva in that case? Many among us live without direction and quest for wisdom. We get delighted with our little successes and depressed over our failures without trying to understand the underlying current behind these occurrences. The transformative process to awaken us to the deeper truth behind life will destroy many illusions that we held on to very strongly in life. To an external audience, this looks like death of certain behaviours and tendencies. For instance, we see people leaving the chase for possessions and positions for meditation and silence. That is death of one kind.

Any building, bridge or dam of superior strength and infrastructural excellence will start to crumble over the years. We take down such old structures to rebuild them or repair them in the interest of public safety. Destruction work in the same line. After an age, our bodies are not capable of working with the same vigour of youth. We cannot carry on for long periods. Destruction is vital in that case. However, destruction is not annihilation. It is rather a transformation from one kind to another.  

Material Wisdom behind Transformation

Once we realise the wisdom behind destruction, we wake up to a higher truth. We realise nothing is destroyed, but only transformed. Look at scientific innovations under this light. We claim we have “invented” automobiles, electronic equipment, building styles and so many things. We refuse to accept that we are only tools of Nature.

Drill down to the minutest components of our Material inventions. We can see that these are elements and compounds found in nature. iPhones and Computers will not have formed without Silicon. Automobiles will not work without fossil fuel. Even Solar Energy needs Sun. So, we are still totally dependent on Nature. We are only rearranging elements available in Nature and transforming them for our needs. So, here arises a question. Is there anything “Artificial” at all?

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