vedAdhikAram and MokshAdhikAram

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Tue May 12 14:24:40 CDT 1998

On Fri, 8 May 1998, Vivek Anand Ganesan wrote:

> NamashkAr,
>    If, as ShrI Grimes had pointed out that the prescribed way in
> Advaitam is "Shruti, Yukti and Anubhava" then it seems to me that
> vedAdhikAram and MokshAdhikAram are implicitly connected.  If only
> male DvijAs are given access to Shruti, does it not follow that the
> AdvAita MArgam is open only to those people?
>    Besides, if Advaitam is philosophically an exegitical tradition and
> if the Scriptural study is restricted to only a certain class of
> people then how can Advaitam claim to be Universal?

I can think of three possible answers to this.

1.  Maybe the Advaita acharyas didn't care about universality or thought
of it in a different way to our modern conceptions.

2.  Giri mentioned this view those who cannot study the Vedas may get the
same benefit by study  of works such as the Gita which contain the essence
of the Vedas and which they are allowed to hear.

(Interesting aside here.  There was Vedantin called Bhatta Bhaskara who
was a contemporary of Shankaracharya or came just after whose thinking was
a sort of bhedabhedavada.  It didn't catch on and is now extinct
but his Gitabhashya survives and in it he denies the right of Shudras to
read even that.  Precisely because the Gita is equal to the Vedas he
argues, the same strictures apply.)

3.  What Anand wrote suggested this to me.  It could be that those who
wish to know Brahman will be born in their next lives as Brahmanas and
will achieve Moksha then.

Of these, 2. seems to me to be the best fit but all 3 sound plausible if
we look at all the evidence.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at>

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