Alvin Lal: Did Raja Janak have two wives – Sunyanana and Yogini? What is the best authentic Valmiki ramayan, there seems to be so many today?

Alvin Lal: Did Raja Janak have two wives – Sunyanana and Yogini? What is the best authentic Valmiki ramayan, there seems to be so many today?
Swami Ram Swarup: My blessings to you. Uptil now I recommend authentic Valmiki Ramayana translated and commented by Paramhansa Sri Jagdishwaranand Saraswati, published by M/s. Vijya Kumar, Govind ram Hasanand, 4408 nai sadak, Delhi-110006 (India). In the said Ramayana, in chapter 1, 25th sarg, the name of Sita’s mother has been stated as Yogini. Underneath comments carry reference of Shiv Purann parvati khand 2/29 wherein the reference of above named second wife of Janak has been given. Otherwise nowhere name of any wife of King Janak or any other story pertaining to his marriage etc., has been mentioned in Valmiki Ramayana. Here I would like to comment that Puranns are not authentic.

Alvin Lal: Suppose one person only does bad karmas, violence, etc. He is a real criminal for all intent and purposes. Therefore his kriyamann karma is always bad, nothing pious. So he dies and the sanchit karma balance should dictate that he becomes dog, cat, insect, next life (because of all his bad deeds in past life). If you take the above example, then the world’s human population should decrease by one human. (being a criminal). However in the world today, Criminal activity is increasing and so is population. Why? The above current worldly situation does not seem to fit this model of sanchit, prarabhadh and kriyamann deeds and balance carried forward to next life. Population should decrease, if criminal activity increases. Please enlighten.
Swami Ram Swarup: My blessings to you. I have explained on this website also the Yajurveda mantra 40/3, “ASURYANAAM TE LOKA..” i.e., the criminal minded or bad charactered men/women get next birth in the asur yoni (devil/mean) also. Asur yoni means he will be getting human body but his deeds will be like that of a devil. Second meaning of asur yoni is — he may get downfall i.e., birth in animal, birds etc., yoni. As regards increase in population the souls get birth in human body from being elevated from animals, birds, insects etc., yoni. So population of men and women will increase but decrease of number of animals, insects including those which are unseen can’t be counted. So it seems to people that human bodies are increasing. However, the number of souls remains constant.

Lakshmi Sandeep: Can a woman do a simple havan herself at home? What are the restrictions that have to be observed?
Swami Ram Swarup: Yes please, girl/woman and men, all are entitled to do hawan in Yajshala or at home etc. There is no restriction of any kind, please. Hawan can be continued forever. It must not be discontinued. I have written a book on hawan in Hi9ndi with all ved mantras and their description named “Yaj- Karma sarvshreshth Ishwar Pooja” worth Rs. 65/- excluding postal charges which can be sent to you if you desire, on receipt of your postal address.

Anirban: Why brahmins wore ‘Janeu’ or sacred thread? Does the number of threads in the janeu has any significance?
Swami Ram Swarup: In this connection, my article on janeyu is pasted below:
Janeyu (the holy thread)

According to the true Vedic philosophy the custom to wear the Janeyu is eternal made by God. Janeyu has three threads which are indication of Raj, Tam and Satv gunas. There is a knot in the thread which indicates and reminds every time that we have taken oath to bind the said three gunas because the gunas have proud, anger, laziness, greediness and various sins.

Further the said three threads also remind us to discharge duties towards Rishirin, Pitririn and Devrin. Rishirin means we have to serve the learned Rishis to obtain knowledge both worldly and spiritual. Pitririn means after completion of brahmacharya ashram our parents entered Grihasthashram (family life being married) and gave us birth. This tradition we have to follow and we have to serve the parents also. Devrin means after completion of grihasthashram we have to enter Vanprasth ashram to learn and donate the knowledge to the society. In a Sanskrit shlok it is mentioned that the Yajopavit gives us long happy life.

Anil Lohiya: Pranam, As you said the knowledge of Vedas is attained first by listening Vedas, shastras by learned Acharya. Can it be done by listening through a audio CD / Cassette, if yes, are these available with you?
Swami Ram Swarup: My blessings to you. The beginning can be made in this way by listening to audio CDs etc., which are available here as well, please. But ultimately you should either come here or must seek a learned acharya of Vedas locally to attain Vedas’ knowledge. A list of Vedic books written by me with the blessings of Almighty God is also on this site. You may select the books for studying and gaining Vedic knowledge, if you so desire, then the same can be sent to you on receipt of your postal address.