Vidyasankar Sundaresan vidya at CCO.CALTECH.EDU
Sat Jun 21 17:48:56 CDT 1997

> What's the difference between Jeevan Muktha and rest of the persons.

One who has experienced Brahman himself is called a Jivanmukta - liberated
while still embodied. All karmas are considered to have been burnt by the
Brahman knowledge, although the body continues till the momentum of the
prArabdha karma (karma that has already begun taking fruit) runs out.

As for the rest, the ignorance (avidyA) leads to desires (kAma), which
manifests as action (karma), so that more and more karma is being
accumulated by the person. So long as the karmas have not been burnt up,
the cycle of rebirth and redeath continues.

> Does Jeevan Muktha experience Sorrow.

By definition, no.

> If a Jeevan Muktha experienced a physical pain in his body , how come he
> identify himself with Brahman. (That is, while experiencing physical
> pain he identify himself with his physical body.)

A Jivanmukta is indifferent to physical/mental pain and pleasure. The body
might experience pain, but the Jivanmukta remains unaffected by it. Read
Vivekachudamani and Jivanmuktiviveka for elaborate descriptions of the
qualities by which a Jivanmukta can be identified. If one identifies with
the pain at unpleasant things or feels pleasure at pleasant things, that
is a sure sign both to oneself and to others, that one is not yet a

> What's the difference between Jeevan Muktha and Vidhega Muktha.

Videhamukti refers to the physical death of the Jivanmukta. The moment of
death releases the prANas from the gross body. In the case of human beings
who are ignorant, the prANas are said to accompany the subtle body to
eventually take up a new body. However, in the case of the Jivanmukta, the
prANas are said to attain an equilibrium here itself. They do not go out
to experience another birth.

By courtesy, all sannyAsins are said to have attained videhamukti when the
physical death occurs. That is why the body of the sannyAsin is buried,
not cremated, as is normal practice in all originally Indian traditions.
However, irrespective of the mode of disposal of the corpse, advaita says
that if there is residual prArabdha karma, or if ignorance of the
ever-established Brahman has not been removed in this lifetime, there is
assuredly another birth.


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