Spiritual Evaluation

Malolan Cadambi malolan at IASTATE.EDU
Thu Nov 29 13:46:26 CST 2001

>but I am sure you also know there are nitya mukta-s even in
>Dvaita and VishishhTaadvaita schools. Starting from Lakshmi to
>GaruDa, Narada, Vishvak Seena etc. are Jiiva-s yet nityamukta-s.   In
>Dvaita school too - they give importance to Lakshmi, and then to
>Hanuman and then the rest.

Sriman Sadananda Swamin, There is a classification on souls in
Visisthadvaita. From what adiyen has read and heard from vidwans, is this:

The Vadagalai School views lakshmi to have the following attributes:

(i)She is the means for attaining salvation as much as the Lord Himself and
also has the role of a mediator ( Purushakara)
(ii) She is infinite in nature (Vibhu) like the Lord Himself
(iii) She is also Paramatma as much as the Lord Himself.

However, the Thengalai school has divergent views on the same. In Sum,
Laksmi cannot be view as a jIvatma in the strictest sense. She also cannot
be held as jIvan-muktha in the same sense.

The question naturally arises; How can lakshmi be a paramAtma when Vishnu
himself is the paramAtma? Surely there are no two paramAtmas!?

K.S.Narayanachar explains that Laksmi and Vishnu are like light and
luminosity. The concept of the dwandwa is to be applied here. Lakshmi has
the role of a mediator (purushakara) which is also the role of the purusha
sriman Naarayana who is the paramAtma.

Garuda, Hanuman and Vishvaksena

They are viewed as nitya-sooris. Also they *are* not jiivatmas in the
strictest sense.Nithya Soori means enlightened souls or eternally released
souls , who never had any bondage of samsArA.They are omniscient and thus
are endowed with perfect knowledge.

>There is a hierarchy  in the jiiva-s.All are embodied in some form.

Yes. In the Visisthadvaita School of Vedanta, there is a hierarchy of
souls. All jiivas are essentialy the same, but it is essentially the
amounts of the trigunas which causes the hierarchy.

The souls are grouped as:

1.) Baddha Jiivas: From Microorganisms to Brahma and all the devatas are
Baddha jiivatmaas.

(2) MukthAs , who through the successful pursuit of Bhakthi Yoga or
performance of Prapathti at the feet of SadaachaAryan are released form
their bondages and serve the Lord at His Parama Padham .These are Muktha

(3) NithyAs or Nithya Jeevans or Nithya Sooris are those , who are
eternally free from samsAric bondages.They never had any bondages unlike
the Muktha Jeevans,who overcame their bondages thru Bhakthi YogA or
prapathti YogA.

I posted the above so that Bhaktas can get a deeper understanding of the
hierarchy of souls in the Visisthadvaita School.


Adiyen Ramanuja Daasan,

Malolan Cadambi

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