[Advaita-l] Thanks [Was some questions on dharma]

Annapureddy Siddhartha Reddy annapureddy at gmail.com
Sat Oct 28 03:06:32 CDT 2006

namaskAramu Siva Senani gAru (and others too),

 To me that shows the AchArya's boldness, an attempt to speak his mind
> without being fettered by established conventions, a supreme confidence that
> his knowledge is right; and the fact that seven hundred years down the road
> those positions are not held mainstream tells another story.

Could you tell me why the tradition (advaita vEdAnta and others) supports
bhIShma in this regard. From the pros/cons presented in my previous mail,
the case seems to go against bhIShma. Also, are there any standard
traditional authorities/books on the interpretation of such moral issues in
the advaita vEdAnta tradition?

There's a good, potentially non-traditional, explanation that is
satisfactory: http://www.infinityfoundation.com/mandala/h_es/h_es_chakr_bhishma.htm

The point the author makes (leaving aside talk of "modern notions of
democracy" etc.) is that shrI kR^iShNa proposed a "new" interpretation of
dharma than was existing at the time. It seems very reasonable (at least
historically), as there seems to be a marked parallel between the kind of
dharma shrI rAma and bhIShma followed. Both stuck to their word against all
odds. Both felt themselves obliged towards duty rather than justice in the
strict sense (Just so my statement is not misconstrued, I am referring to
sIta dEvi being exiled by shrI rAma. If shrI rAma adopted a course of true
justice, He should have given sIta a fair trial, and since He was convinced
of Her innocence, He should have taken all the pains to make sure a
righteous person was not punished. And similarly with bhIShma in the case of
the episode of draupadi vastrApaharaNa.) Please let me know of your


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