[Advaita-l] Bhasma dharanam by Vaidikas - Sarva Mata Sangraha

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Sun Feb 11 02:35:20 EST 2018

Bhasma dharanam by Vaidikas - Sarva Mata Sangraha

In the work Sarva Mata Sangraha the author, an advaitin, cites a verse in
the context of the Charvaka darshanam:


तथाच तद्वचनम्-
"अग्निहोत्रं त्रयो वेदास्त्रिपुण्ड्रं भस्मगुण्ठनम् ।
बुद्धिपौरुषहीनानां जीविकेति बृहस्पतिः ॥
[ Agnihotra, the three Vedas, Tripundra, Bhasma dhAraNam - these are the
means for livelihood by those who are devoid of intellect and industry. So
says Brihaspati.]

त्रयो वेदस्य कर्तारो मुनिभण्डनिशाचराः ।
स्वर्गः कर्तृक्रियाद्रव्यनाशेऽपि यदि यज्वनाम् ॥

भवेद् दावाग्निदग्धानां फलं स्याद् भूरिभूरुहाम् ।
प्रत्यक्षादिप्रमासिद्धविरुद्धार्थाभिधायिनः ॥
वेदान्ता यदि शास्त्राणि बौद्धैः किमपराध्यते" ।
इत्यादि ॥

[The above are verses, again caricaturing Veda and everything Vaidika.]

A variation of the first cited verse is found in many other sources:

'*अग्निहोत्रं त्रयो वेदास्त्रिपुण्ड्रं* भस्मधारणम् । बुद्धिपौरुषहीनानां
जीविकेति बृहस्पतिः ॥

Another variation of this verse, as cited in the Sarva Darshana Sangraha
and Krishna Misra's Prabodha Chandrodaya (which work is placed in the 5CE,
pre-Shankara, by some scholars):

 *अग्निहोत्रं त्रयो* वेदात्रिदण्डं भस्मगुण्ठनम्। बुद्धिपौरुषहीनानां जीविका

The verse about Tripundra/Bhasma dhaaraNam is proof of vaidikas of very
ancient times following this practice. This is an external evidence over
and above the innumerable passages for the bhasma dhaarana vidhi in the
Upanishads such as the Brihajjaabaala, puranas such as Shiva purana, Devi
Bhagavatam, etc. The vedic injunction : धिग्भस्मरहितं फालम्  is having its
Tamil counterpart:    நீறில்லா நெற்றி  பாழ் :

In fact even the Mani Manjari, a work of Narayana Pandita of the Madhva
following, believed by them to be a contemporary of Madhva, has stated that
the 'Advaitins persecuted the Vaishnavas by forcibly removing their
lAnchanam, marks, and applying the one's of the oppressors. Also, the
vaishnavas were advised by their leaders to pretend to appear like their

मायिनां लाञ्छनं धार्यं कार्यं तन्नमनादिकम् |

The MM makes another remark about the ‘lāñcchanam’ in this same chapter.
The Guru of the vaiṣṇava monks advises them, consoling them, that they
better put on the marks of the māyāvādins and behave like them outwardly by
prostrating to them, etc. but contemplate on Hari who is residing in them
and also study their doctrine.

See the full article here:


Om Tat Sat

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