[Advaita-l] My Questions and My Mails
aparyap at yahoo.co.in
Mon Mar 20 07:49:58 CST 2006
dear shrI Siva Senani Nori,
--- Siva Senani Nori <sivasenani_at_yahoo.com> wrote:
> application of those to a given situation. In the
> case of vedAnta, then, the
> proper course to follow would be the upanishats,
> brahmasUtras, and then finally
> the gItA.
i strongly disagree with the above view.
traditionally, the study of the upaniShad-s is only
for the 'mature'. the standards by which this maturity
is measured are so high that most of us would be
nowhere close to that. most of us would fall under the
category of 'moustached babies' - as svAmi vivekAnanda
puts it! the upaniShad-s are not meant for kids. i'm
not saying that upaniShad-s should not be studied, but
it is *necessary* to first develop at least some basic
disciplines before that.
it is easy to imagine ourself to have the requisite
maturity, but more often than not, this is not the
truth. and it is almost impossible to achieve the
required maturity overnight.
there is another problem in reading the upaniShad-s
directly. typically, the upaniShad-s boldly proclaim
the truth, but never bother to 'prove' or 'establish'
them. this is not a fault of the upaniShad-s, but only
adds to their greatness. most of these truths are so
revolting that it is very difficult for 'freshies' and
for those who do not have self control to accept the
statements of upaniShad-s as something that is of
utmost importance to their lives. even for those
familiar with vedAnta, it takes the greatest effort to
live a 'vedAntic' life.
back to the topic at hand, the most important and
pressing need for one aspiring to know the truth is to
learn to deal with the ups and downs of day-to-day
life in a harmonious way that would ease his progress
towards the truth. this is best learnt under a proper
mentor if available. the next best option is to read
the lives of mahAtmA-s and see if we can learn
something from them.
we would get endlessly lost if we start with the
upaniShad-s. the statements in the upaniShad-s are
stuff that need to be intuitively understood and this
requires a great deal of maturity. thus, it is not a
very good idea to start with the upaniShad-s. the aim
should be aquire sAdhana chatuShTaya sampatti.
whatever leads to that is fine.
(btw, even in science, no one teaches quantum
mechanics to a tenth grader. starting rigorously from
the basics doesn't work in science as well. one first
learns a simple theory and this is refined as one goes
deeper into the subject until finally one gains enough
background to address it's abstract and rigorous
foundations. thus, asking a beginner to start from the
upaniShad-s is only as useful as advising one who
wants to learn physics to start from string theory.
this simply doesn't work.)
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