Our next meet up will be on Sunday, June 3rd, and we have an interesting speaker, Kumar Padmini, who will be talking to us on a verse from the Katha Upanishad ( the book that was translated as "A Dialogue with Death" by Eknath Easwaran..we have this book in our library). In spite of the title, the book is more about life than death :)
Na tatra suryo bhati na candra tarakam
nema vidyuto bhanti kutoyam agnihi
tameva bhantam anubhati sarvam
tasya bhasa sarvam idam vibhati
There the sun does not shine, nor do the moon and the stars. These streaks of lightning do not shine there either, (so) what to speak of this fire? That, shining, makes all others shine. By virtue of its luminosity, all these (manifestations) are illuminated.
My own understanding of this verse is that at an individual level, the self or consciousness (or life energy) resides in all of us, without which the organs of the body or the mind, cannot function. At a macro level, the same energy resides in everything, whether it is sun or moon or stars, without which they cannot function!
It may be worth noting that in vedic astrology, all these planets (and earth) are actually considered conscious beings !
Anyway, great topic and relevant...most of us consider us weak and burdened with issues...our problems are much bigger and we are always too small to handle them...we are never good enough for Mr. Mind... scaring us with this or that... ..and here is this verse telling us everything is shining only because of the Self, which is present in us as the Observer!