Vaidya N. Sundaram sundaram at ECN.PURDUE.EDU
Tue Aug 11 11:34:31 CDT 1998

> 11)
>  chittasya shuddhaye karma na tu vastuupalabdhaye .
>  vastusiddhirvichaareNa na ki.nchitkarmakoTibhiH
>  Karma is intended for purification of the mind, not for understanding
> the nature of an object. Knowledge can be obtained only by reflection;
> not even a little bit of it can be known by performing even a crore of
> karma's.

 [ ... ]

>  Similarly, the srutis clearly say that sacrifices and other karmas are
> inferior and are like weak boats . To consider them as superior is to get
> further entangled.

 This is a part of the discussion of HH on verse 11 of the
vivekachUdAmani. I could not fully understand the reference to the "weak
boat" at that time. Now, by His grace, I have come across a
meaning/discussion of the PraNavam AUM. It greatly clarifies the
reference. The following is from the Siva Purana. Ch 17. ver. 2 - 8

 The symbol AUM means an excellent boat to cross the ocean of worldy
exixtence. Pra = of the Prakrti i.e., the world evolved out of it. Navam -
nAvAm varam - an excellent boat.

 Or Pranava may mean: "that which leads to new knowledge". After
annihilating all actions it gives the persons who repeat the mantra or
worship, a fresh knowledge of the pure soul.


 There is a great deal said about the primordial relevance/significance/
importance of the PraNavam. I have come across a few in the Siva PuraNa,
once where Siva Himself explains it to Vishnu and Brahma after their
fight, and a second time when Suta Brahmam is explaining it to the
Brahmins he is telling the Siva PuraNa to. I will try and post some of it
in later posts.
 I also request members to find time to discuss the relevance or other
interpretations of AUM in this forum. I am also especially interested the
method of intonation: is it to be said aloud, or meditated upon etc.

bhava shankara desikame sharaNam.

                      Vaidya N. Sundaram
 The place, time, objects and their knower etc., projected in a dream
during sleep are all mithyA (an illusion/false). So too, here. in the
waking state, the world that is seen is a projection by one's own
ignorance. Likewise, this body, the senses, the breath, the ego etc.,
are all unreal. Therefore, That thou art, the peaceful, defectless,
supreme, non-dual Brahman.  -- Adi Shankara in VivekacUdAmani.

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