250 yr old
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Date: 1/16/2006 6:56:18 PM ( 12 y ) ... viewed 5583 times
Devraha Baba -
250+ Years Old
Vincent J. Daczynski
Longevity Miracle - Devraha Baba at 250+ Years Old.
"And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years, and he died," from Genesis 5:5. According to the Bible subsequent progeny lived for hundreds of years, with some in excess of nine hundred years. Are biblical references to a long life span allegorical or statistical facts? Today’s human with an average life span under eighty years may have difficulty comprehending how a human could live so long. But, perhaps a life span into the hundreds of years is not that far-fetched. What if sometime in the future medical science was able to eliminate most diseases, what then would cause people to die? Accidents and wars aside, how old could old age be? How long could the life span of a human be? Hundreds of years? Why not?
Much research has been done and is being done on aging and how to prevent it. Some observations and theories have evolved. One observation has been that animals with a slow metabolism tend to live longer than animals with a fast metabolism. Shrews, for example, have a fast metabolism. They live only a year or two. Turtles have a slow metabolism. The giant tortoise lives nearly 200 years. Studies done on meditators have proven that metabolism slows down during meditation; heart rate and breathing slows down. Results of a study measuring the physiological differences between subjects practicing Transcendental Meditation and just simply taking rest were reported in American Psychologist 42: 879881, 1987. The article stated that Transcendental Meditation produced a significant increase in basal skin resistance compared to eyes-closed rest, indicating profound relaxation. Deep rest and relaxation were also indicated by greater decreases in respiration rates and plasma lactate levels compared to ordinary rest. The implication is that practicing meditation may extend one's life span.
Another theory suggests that hormones play a role in the aging process. In 1989, at Veterans Administration hospitals in Milwaukee and Chicago, a study indicated that a growth hormone produced in the pituitary gland plays a critical part in aging. As one ages, production of the growth hormone declines. Injections of a synthetic version of the growth hormone were given to a small group of men aged 60 and over. There was a dramatic reversal of some signs of aging. The injections increased muscle mass, reduced excess fat, and thickened skin. But, when the injections stopped, the men's new strength decreased and signs of aging returned. Also, older people have reduced levels of estrogen, testosterone, melatonin, thymosin, and DHEA; reductions of which also have an effect on aging.
Still another theory of aging is the free-radical theory. According to this theory, free radicals, which occur during the natural course of metabolism, also act randomly and indiscriminately to damage cell components. Free radicals are chemical compounds that possess one or more unshared electrons as part of their structural configurations. To become stable they aggressively seek out another electron with which to pair. In so doing they attack molecules, such as lipids, proteins and DNA which make up the cell's membrane. Cells have an internal defense system of creating antioxidants to fight against the harmful effects of free radicals. However, their defense mechanism is insufficient to prevent the damage caused by the actions of free radicals over a cell's lifetime. This cumulative cellular damage may contribute to the aging process. Pharmacologists demonstrated that by augmenting the cell's antioxidant defenses with certain synthetic enzymes they were able to reduce the action of free radicals, and thereby lessen cellular damage that the free radicals caused. By administering synthetic enzymes to worms the pharmacologists were able to extend the average life span of worms by 44%. Using this same pharmacological intervention on humans may lengthen the human life span as well.
Caloric restriction is another approach scientists have discovered which extends longevity. Researchers studied the effects of reducing food intake by 30% to 70% on a variety of life forms, from yeast to mammals. The researchers found that they were able to increase the life span of various creatures up to 40%. Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology studied yeast and found that when the energy of a cell drops off (which occurs under conditions of caloric restriction) an enzyme called Sir2 is activated. When activated, Sir2 causes a cell's genes within its chromosomes to be silenced. This reduces the production of extrachromosomal DNA circles, or Ecs. Ecs are toxic to cells and decrease longevity in yeast; they self-replicate, accumulate, and compete with the yeast's genome for vital enzymes and other cellular materials. For this reason reducing Ecs results in extending the life span of yeast. Since Sir2 has been found in humans, the research findings on yeast appear to be applicable to the human aging process as well.
What if a person does not eat at all, but is able to switch his body metabolism into living directly off of sunshine, can he prolong his life? Recent studies made on behalf of NASA, as well as other prior scientific research studies, have proven that humans can live without food. They do not understand why or how, only that it is possible for humans to do so. One such recorded case is of Giri Bala, a woman who had not eaten for 56 years.
Here is a dialogue between of Paramahansa Yogananda and Giri Bala, excerpted from Yogananda's book, Autobiography of a Yogi.
"Are you never tempted to eat?"
"If I felt a craving for food, I would have to eat."
Simply yet regally she stated this axiomatic truth, one known too well by a world revolving around three meals a day!
"But you do eat something!" My tone held a note of remonstrance.
"Of course!" She smiled in swift understanding.
"Your nourishment derives from the finer energies of the air and sunlight, and from the cosmic power which recharges your body through the medulla oblongata…"
"Mother," I asked, "why don't you teach others the method of living without food?"
My ambitious hopes for the world's starving millions were quickly shattered.
"No." She shook her head. "I was strictly commanded by my guru not to divulge the secret. It is not his wish to tamper with God's drama of creation. The farmers would not thank me if I taught many people to live without eating! The luscious fruits would lie uselessly on the ground. It appears that misery, starvation, and disease are whips of our karma which ultimately drive us to seek the true meaning of life."
"Mother," I said slowly, "what is the use of your having been singled out to live without eating?"
"To prove that man is Spirit." Her face lit with wisdom. "To demonstrate that by divine advancement he can gradually learn to live by the Eternal Light and not by food."
Yogananda's book also refers to Christian saints not taking food. It states,
Among Christian Saints who lived without eating may be mentioned St. Lidwina of Schiedam, Blessed Elizabeth of Rent, St. Catherine of Siena, Dominica Lazarri, Blessed Angela of Feligno, and the 19th century Louise Lateau. St. Nicholas of Flue (Bruder Klaus, the 15th century hermit whose impassioned plea for union saved the Swiss Confederation) was an abstainer from food for twenty years.
If a person were able to draw his required energy from cosmic sources he would eliminate the toxic fallout (free radicals and Ecs) that occurs from eating food, and this would help him prolong his life span. And, if the person practiced meditation and lived a relaxed lifestyle (thus lowering his metabolism), and also practiced yoga postures (stimulating his endocrine system), his life span would surely be prolonged. Taking these three factors together, it should be possible for a person living such a lifestyle to extend his life span dramatically.
An Indian saint named Devraha Baba, who passed away in 1989, was a yogi who lived just such a lifestyle. Devraha Baba was from the spiritual heritage of the Avatar Ramanandacharya, and lived beside the Yamuna river in Mathura. He lived on a 12-foot-high wooden platform where he usually remained stark naked. He never ate food. He only drank water from the Yamuna river. He claimed he could be in two places simultaneously (a siddhi described in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras). He was observed to have stayed underwater unaided for half an hour. He always radiated love. He was a Premaswarupa, an incarnation of love. He gave darshan (spiritual blessing) to devotees who came to pay homage. Many came to visit this great illustrious saint. People came from all over India and from all walks of life. He was a favorite among India's senior politicians, and was visited by Mrs. Indira and Mr. Rajiv Gandhi. Ministers, saints, yogis, priests, rich and poor all came for Baba's darshan.
It was rumored that Devraha Baba claimed that he had lived for over 700 years. Until I can substantiate this rumor I need to consider it just a rumor. Nevertheless, I make mention of this rumor because Devraha Baba's family tree records place his age to be at least 250 years when he took mahasamadhi (relinquished his body) in 1989. If he was able to live to be 250, then it is possible that he lived for 700 years as well. Baba was called, "The Ageless Yogi." Devraha Baba gained mastery over the khecheri state of yoga whereby he was able to control his hunger and the time of his death. Dr. Rajendra Prashad, who was the first president of India, verified Devraha Baba's old age. He said that he personally attests to Devraha Baba being at least 150 years old. He said that when he was 73 years old, his father took him to see Baba, who was a very old man, and that his father already had known Baba for many years before that. An Allahabad High Court Barrister had stated that seven generations of his family had sat at the feet of Devraha Baba. Incidentally, Devraha Baba had predicted the time of his death five years in advance.
Since Giri Bala's interview with Yogananda, the world has undergone an exponential awakening in consciousness and science. The ancient teachings of the Rishis, which heretofore have been kept secret and only shared with the closest of disciples, now are readily available to everyone. As more people begin meditation practices and learn to tap their inner cosmic energies, and as medical science moves towards eradicating all diseases, it is conceivable that the human life span will be extended by decades if not by centuries.
Website Content © 2004 by Vincent J. Daczynski. All Rights Reserved.
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