Translation Series - Gita Bhashya - Introduction 1/3

Vidyasankar vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Aug 5 12:40:38 CDT 2002

>Dear Sri Vidyasankar,
>When you say "Law is to be observed" - does it refer to either of the
>at any time or both simultaneously or one followed by the other?

This is a key topic of discussion throughout the Gita commentary, so we
can take it up whenever it occurs. There is a hint about the fundamental
view taken by Shankaracharya in the introdcution itself, where the
pravR^itti dharma is given to the prajaapati-s and the nivR^itti dharma is
given to sanaka, sanandana and others.

The question of simultaneously following both paths does not arise, for
that would be akin to trying to walk in two opposite directions at once.
For most of us, it has to be pravR^itti followed by nivR^itti, but with
the clear understanding that there is no valid return to pravR^itti once
the decision is taken to follow the nivR^itti dharma.

>What is Sri Sankara refering to when he says that the "Law is described in
>the Vedas" (vedokta)?

That both the pravR^itti and nivR^itti dharma-s are described in the
Vedas. The comment is meant for those who think that only the path of
action is prescribed for all people, and that the path of renunciation is
alien to the Vedic dharma. That is not so, and Shankaracharya emphasizes
that both dharma-s are vedokta - described/prescribed in the Vedas.


More information about the Advaita-l mailing list