Jaldhar H. Vyas
jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Mon Jun 5 21:55:03 CDT 2000
On Fri, 2 Jun 2000, T Swaminarayan wrote:
> The masters of Advaita surely do not recommend any idol worship at
> all.Any pooja means two entities,one performing the pooja and the
> other that is being worshipped by that puja! Is that not verily
> DWAITAM ?
Is worshipping an invisible God any less a sign of a Dvaita outlook?
Certainly most of the monotheistic religions (Indian and non-Indian) are
nowhere near the Advaita view. Also consider that a Bhakta will have a
very vivid picture in his mind of his Ishtadevata. For instance
Shanakaracharya has written a stotra called Shivakeshaadipaadantavarnana
strotram tha describes Shiva Bhagawan from His hair down to His feet. If
you'e going to get into such detail why not take a small extra step and
have an image or photo of God?
There are mandirs all over India whose murtis have been installed by or at
the direction of Shankaracharya and his successors. This is done for the
encouragement of true Bhakti, something which does not run counter to the
tenets of Advaita Vedanta.
As to whether true Bhakti can be done "long distance" I think the mental
outlook of the worshipper makes the difference. The computer doesn't
change the issues. It just makes it easier for wise people to do wise
things and stupid people to do stupid things.
Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
bhava shankara deshikame sharaNam
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