Goddess Radha's feet.
I had always wondered about the importance given to the feet of a person. We touch the feet of our parents, Gurus and elders. We meditate on the feet of God/Goddess. The famous "Paduka Sahasram" by Sri. Vedantha Desikar is all about the footwear ("padukas") of Lord Ranganatha. All the vaishnavite temples have "Vishnu Padam" (Feet of Lord Vishnu).
This subject about feet brings to my mind an incident-In 1993, (just a year before Maha Periyava's Brahmaleenam) I had been to Kanchipuram for the darshan of Maha Periyava. His Holiness was seated in an easy chair, His gaze blankly surveying the overwhelming crowd of devotees thronging the place around Him. Devotees were craning their necks over each other to catch a glimpse of Maha Periyava. The two men flanking His Holiness bent down towards Maha Periyava to whisper something in His ears. Maha Periyava listened to them intently and nodded His head ever so slightly. The two men bent down to lift His legs and placed Them on a stool in front of Him. Placed in that angle, the soles of His Feet were pointed upwards, and the naked soles of His feet were clearly visible to all of us. The devotees standing around me gasped in open wonderment and awe! They started pushing each other for a good view of Maha Periyava's feet, chanting aloud while doing so, "Paada Darshanam, Paapa Vimochanam, "Kamakshi Paadam!" I tried to hold the view of the smooth and glistening soles of His feet with my gaze, intending to store the image in my heart. It was a moment of great significance that left a deep impression in my heart!
That was the beginning of my contemplation on "feet". Due to my habit of interpreting words (lexigram or similar-sounding words), I felt there had to be an authentic theory behind the similar sounds of 'feet' and 'feat' . Feet / 'feat', thought-provoking indeed!
There is always a scientific reasoning behind every religious belief and based on this fact I had studied a little about feet reflexology and acupressure. The subjects are all about applying pressure on minute areas of the feet for healing. This pressure actually stimulates important points on the foot that transfers energy throughout the body to stimulate balance throughout the body.
Reflexology also states that the body is divided into five longitudinal zones on either side of the body totalling to ten. Every part or organ of the body is connected to the feet of the body. Ailments are diagnosed by feeling the feet and to treat the ailment, the corresponding pressure point in the foot is massaged. This also stimulates the flow of energy, blood, nutrients and nerve impulses to the corresponding zone thereby relieving the ailment in that particular zone.
Since feet contain the key points to each and every zone in the human body, the 'sole' of the foot could be described as the 'soul' of the body!
For maintaining the purity of the body temple, it is essential to keep the feet clear from bad energies that are mostly transmitted through footwear. These bad energies are absorbed by our footwear from various places outside our homes. Also the reason why we wash our feet as soon as we enter our homes!
Monks wear wooden 'padukas', probably because wood resists the invasion of negative energies! It is also understandable why we do not wear our footwear inside our homes.
A couple of months back, I fell sick with imaginary fever. The thermometer would read normal temperature, but I would still be feeling feverish. I tried various medication, but nothing worked. A reiki healer and clairvoyant who is a good friend told me that the shoes I used for treadmill were polluted with bad energies which was causing the ailment. As I threw my shoes away I gradually experienced a release from my feverish condition! Shoe is not merely footwear, bad energies are shooed away by shoes!
Our souls are in our soles - the sole reason being that, feet are not just about pedicure!