[Advaita-l] Re: yoga and vedanta
bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com
bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com
Fri Jul 29 02:26:16 CDT 2005
praNAms Sri Ramakrishna Balasubramanian prabhuji
I hope this discussion taking place in the spirit of objective analysation
of the available information without getting into subjective attachment to
any particular tradition/school/AchArya. With that objective in my mind,
I'd like to share my thoughts with the profound scholars of this august
The point is that right at the beginning of the pa.ncapaadikaa, there
is a verse comparing sha.nkara to shiva. By a "via negativa" approach,
sha.nkara is equated to shiva. shiva has bhuuta ga.nas around him,
while sha.nkara has ascetic disciples, shiva has a black mark on his
throat, while sha.nkara has none, etc. The purpose is clear, basically
equating sha.nkara to dakshiNaamuurti. Now the interesting point is
that the description of sha.nkara is clearly as if the person
composing the verse was right at the spot witnessing the scene of
sha.nkara teaching his disciples. I believe I have posted this verse
on the list before. Also note that the sub-commentary on only the
first four suutras are available now.
Thanks for the information prabhuji. But IMHO this is not a valid pramANa
to prove the author of paNchapAdika is the direct desciple of shankara.
Any author with poetic insticts can compose any no. of verses in praise of
our parama AchArya shankara in the form of sadguru vaNdana. For example
author of mAdhavIya shankara vijaya & other biographers of shankara, though
written even after centuries of shankara, accounted the episodes *as if*
they are the eye witness of those incidents!! Sri SS in his bhajans book
*adhyAtma gItAvaLi* composed many poems glorifying the magnanimity of
shankara & his digvijaya, it does not help us to say that SS is the direct
desciple of shankara. Moreover, since the author of paNchapAdika *equating*
shankara bhagavadpAda with shiva bhagavan, according to your understanding,
we have to infer & conclude that author must have seen shiva also
physically centered with bhUta gaNa to *compare* with shankara with
Kindly dont think I am arguing with you prabhuji...just these are all the
thoughts come to my mind.
Kindly also let me know, whether author of paNchapAdika anywhere
acknowledged that he is the direct desciple of shankara like surEshwavara
did in vArtika & NS. Further, as per SS, even prakAshAtma yati while
writing his vivaraNa commentary has not raised this point & said that the
author of paNchapAdika is indeed the direct desciple of shankara
bhagavadpAda. If the answer is no to the above question, then we are forced
to say that it is only a traditional belief & there is no concrete evidence
to categorically declare that paNchapAdika is the work of direct desciple
Now let us think why any author would compose a verse like this unless
sha.nkara was his guru?
Ofcourse prabhuji, for all spiritual aspirants in jnAna path shankara is
Of course according to the person who has written the biography of Swami
Satchidanandendra claims Padmapaada was a charlatan trying to gain
legitimacy for his thories (actually he more or less states that Padmapaada
was a rogue).
This is really news to me prabhuji!! Kindly give the details of that
biography prabhuji. Sofar I've read one book in kannada called *sadguru
charitre* written by Sri H.S. Lakshmi Narasimha Murthy, direct desciple of
SS...but nowhere I've come across personal attacks like this (claiming
padmapAda was a charlaton/rogue etc.) . I request the members those who
have studied karyalaya publications to enlighten me about this.
Surely Padmapaada could not have fooled every author who lived within
100-200 years of
sha.nkara? On the other hand almost every author right after sha.nkara
(within 100-200 years) accept Padmapaada as a genuine exponent of
sha.nkara. And surely not every one in the 1200 years were fools?
To answer the above questions prabhuji first we have ascertain the author
of paNchapAdika is it not...SS believes that still it is an open issue.
As Anand rightly pointed out, the schools being addressed by the
authors can change some of the argumentation and style. But the
central theme brahma-aatma-ekatva and jnaandeva kaivalyam is the
common theme of pretty much every advaitic author after sha.nkara.
Even at shankara's time there were no dualistic schools & all vaidika
saMpradAyavida-s were unanimously agreeing the concept of
jIva-brahmaikatva...shankara himself says this in sUtra & bruhadAraNyaka
bhAshya...inspite of nonduality prevalent at his time, shankara has spent
time in writing commentaries on prasthAna traya why?? coz. the methodology
adopted by others to teach this yEkatva jnAna was not according to the
sampradAya...in introduction to gIta bhAshya shankara explicitly says this.
We can see that the points being addressed by sureshvara have already
started changing from sha.nkara. sha.nkara brushed off the question of
the aashraya of avidyaa in his upadeshasaahasrii. But the question has
occupied quite a bit of sureshvaras naishhkarmya siddhi. SS who
charges that later authors like Padmapaada and sarvjnaatman were
preoccupied with this question of aashraya, while sha.nkara was not is
quite hard-pressed to explain sureshvara. He consoles himself by
saying that sureshvara just wants to point out that brahman is the
substratum of everything. But surely sureshvara could have done that
without this multi-page discussion of the aashraya of avidyaa?!
prabhuji this point can be discussed in much more detail when your much
awaited article on SS Vs other commentators comes up. I can say there is
really handful of information available from bhAshya & vArtika to negate
the theory of bhAva rUpa avidyA & avidyA upAdAna kAraNatva.
Humble praNAms onceagain,
Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!
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