[Advaita-l] chid-aabhaasa

Bhadraiah Mallampalli vaidix at hotmail.com
Thu Feb 26 04:17:33 CST 2009


Dear Bhattacharjya


>whether the higher entity deserves the first attention or the the lower entity


When we are dealing with multi-layered models, the higher entities look like Brahman, and the lower entities look like objects of



As you pointed out it is possible to find models that reversed the higher-lower relationship. Dhyana, Dharana and Pratyahara is a

brilliant pick. We know Patanjalil's position on this: first do yama niyama, practice asana, pranayama, do pratyahara (withdrawal

of senses), do dharana (attempt to concentrate), finally dhyana and samadhi. 


Sri Krishna's reversal makes better sense, he himself as son of Devaki was mentioned in Ch.U, so he must haved lived in or prior to

this upanishat period and he must be very well aware of Ch.U 7. 


- First pick up a model based meditation (dhyana) and gain "other routes to jnana" (vijnana) and strength (balam). (I would

translate vijnana as vi-jnana, where prefix vi means some thing different from main topic. So if you don't understand something

directly, try other routes. Jnana - Direct understanding is always the best, of course). We are following sequence of Ch.U.7. 


- Once you get strength you can bear the pressures any situation brings to you.. this is dharana. (dhara means to bear)


- Next we rise to the level of food. This is very much the regular food we grow in a farm, cook and eat. But yogis can make their

own food by simply meditating on strength (balam) trying to find its root cause within the body/mind. Regular food is only an

external cause, the real food prati-ahara is the internal cause. (can we translate pratyahara as counter-food? hopefully not over-the-counter fast food!) 


Jokes apart, Patanjali's definition is very much related to this new definition we are trying here. The attention of mind is tied up

due to vasanas, and when it is diverted from the regular vasanas enormous amount of energy is saved, and what is saved is what

is gained, and that is seen as new strength. (Again, what is explained away as vasana at moral level, is a technical term in advaita, but this term has its origin from vasus, the binding forces in veda. Vasus are those that bind every thing here, and provide residence for thoughts.)  


Finally we would reach pranayama at the end by Ch.U.7.15. Such as person is bound to have good behavior, so finally we

practice yama and niyama, as explained by Ch.U.7.15.2. That should put Patanjali on his head, in sheershasana pose literally!


Back to Shri Michael's question, whether we need limited to know about unlimited. There is no such thing as limited. It appears as

limited due to adhyasa. While some thing appears as limited we must follow rules of the higher-lower hierarchies, but we try to

get out of this adhyasa through various types of jnana. The lowest entity (name, but you can also even go down to syllable or

mora level) also has the highest knowledge to offer if we do the right kind of dharana custom designed for that object. 




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