[Advaita-l] SRI SUKTAM - Meaning
michael at shepherd87.fsnet.co.uk
Mon Mar 2 04:48:19 CST 2009
I find this question of 'withholding' very significant from the teaching
point of view.
May I distinguish between oral teaching and book information here ?
In guru-pupil relationship -- as demonstrated so vividly in the Chandogya
Upanishad -- the power of questions (on both sides)to draw forth the self of
the pupil to jnanatman, indicates the effectiveness of the game of
And even in the Chandogya recorded in book form, something of the power of
this 'withholding' comes across.
Could we put it down, ultimately, to chitshakti lila ?!
'Withholding' in printed information, or in scientific caution, is, to my
mind, contingent on quite other criteria.
An intriguing question.
From: advaita-l-bounces at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
[mailto:advaita-l-bounces at lists.advaita-vedanta.org]On Behalf Of Dr D
Sent: 02 March 2009 09:23
To: z1e1b1r1a at yahoo.com; A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta
Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] SRI SUKTAM - Meaning
Dear Sri Narayan,
I think the practice of selective 'holding back' of the knowledge
by highly knowledgeable persons is not uncommon. There is the question of
adhikara siddhi, the question of intrinsic quality of guhyata, esoteric
nature, of certain vidyas. Besides there is the prerogative right of the
'giver' of knowledge. There was no rule or compulsion or a dhaarmic vidhi,
or even an achaara, practice, to give away or disseminate 'all' that one
knows to 'all' without a discrimination or discretion. One example is the
Gayatri Mantra or veda patha are considered or believed [at least, were,
in those days] to be only for certain people who had undergone an upanayana
Once a pandit or a sastrakara is convinced [ whether rightly or wrongly or
in a contestable manner] of this need to be discreet selective in the
exercise of the prerogative of the vidyaadaana, there are several options
open before him to try to execute the idea at least to the extent possible.
One of the ways resorted to in the tradition is the one under discussion.
Though the methods employed may be different and more friendly to 'current
collective intellect', the idea and the sanction of the practice
of selective dispensation of knowledge is still in vogue. The knowledge of
the specifics of the 'critical mass' involved in the chain reaction of
controlled atomic fission [ which can be employed in fusion also] is a
highly guarded issue. We have the qualifying tests, entrance exams personal
interviews even for imparting the modern day knowledge systems which are
largely [ not entirely] data or info oriented.
Also there is the angle of empowerment. There were vidyaas that could bring
name, fame, prosperity riches, raajaadarana which in turn empower an
individual socially. There were vidyaas that could 'directly' empower the
individual with occult powers to influence people, circumstances, events
etc. There were simple petty to major siddhis that generally sought after.
And there were also 'mystical' acts of both
omission and commision consciously executed by individuals who were
believed to have developed and be acting from faculties higher than [ at
least other than ] the heavily reason-oriented intellect.
And above all, there is the unique, singular apaurusheya tradition. I don't
want to go into the merit, worthiness and
vitality of upholding the apaurushaya tradition. But, those that were
convinced [rightly, wrongly or debatably] of the merit such a tradition [ or
of,perhaps,even its the indispensability ], may have felt the need to
'perpetuate' the tradition. One sure shot way, for them, to do it would be
to hold back some finer, vital aspects of 'the teaching' and earmark them
for live and discreet channels of transmission through the mukha of the
'Wrong hands' anybody, at that time and in that context, that may, if
empowered, topple our apple cart. Wrong hands is, of course a relative
term, relevant only to the
relative perceptions,,,,for what is right or wrong in the absoluteness? For
Bush and the US, Saddam and Bin Laden were the 'wrong hands' to hold the
nuclear arsenal.....not so for Iraq. They may have perceived some kind of
justified or unjustified threat to the apaurusheya tradition or may have
had some premonitions of the possibility of destruction of the
'live' aspect of our hoary culture, to be motivated to 'deliberately' hold
sarvE bhavanthu sukhinah
sarvE santhu niraamayaah
sarve bhadrANi pasyanthu
maa kaschit duhkhabhAg bhavEt.
Dr. D. Bharadwaj
drdbharadwaj at gmail.com
On Sun, Mar 1, 2009 at 8:48 PM, narayan iyer <z1e1b1r1a at yahoo.com> wrote:
> Namase Sri Bharadwaj-ji,
> > > Also many nuances and finer aspects often were held back
> > from the text by a
> > shrewd shastrkara and were dedicated to the traditional
> > parampara channels,
> > to minimize the possibility of the valuable knowledge going
> > into the wrong
> > hands. Even Panini resorted to this.
> > It is because of this consciously introduced lacunae that
> > these texts are
> > open to disparate, heterogeneous interpretations.
> > The key is only with the one that is a part of a live
> > traditional
> > parampara....and is therefore guhya.
> I too have heard similar things. But I have doubts whether nuances or
> finer aspects were deliberately held back. Now regarding valuable
> going into wrong hands, who are the presumed wrong hands? Would the
> knowledge have helped the "wrong hands" without adhikaratwa? Can you
> With regards,
> narayan iyer
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