Theory of knowledge

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Thu Sep 10 15:31:05 CDT 1998

On Thu, 10 Sep 1998, Ravisankar S. Mayavaram wrote:

> There different techniques of meditation. Most of them aim at
> making the mind one-pointed and still the thoughts.

About this stilling of thoughts:  I have a question which I will  pose in
a seperate post.

>  When one
> succeeds in going to deep states of meditation, intense bliss of
> deep sleep will be felt. Unlike deep sleep one will be aware of
> it.  If one sleeps during meditation, then he is not really
> meditating. He has failed in meditating correctly.  If one feels
> sleepy, it is better to sleep well and then start the meditation.
> Meditation has great value. It importance in stressed in
> patanjali's yoga sUtra, there is a vivaraNa on vyAsa bhAShya
> attributed to shrI shankara.

Yoga and Vedanta have gotten thoroughly mixed during the centuries but
there are philosophical differences.  In the Brahmasutrabhashya
Shankaracharya criticizes Sankhya-Yoga theories in many places.  Because
he is so strongly against the idea of karma playing any part in moksha,
and he considers meditation a type of karma.

It is precisely for this reason, I don't think the vivarana attributed to
Shankaracharya is genuine.  But of course I have no way to prove that.

> Even doing gAyatri japam is a form
> on meditation. I do not know how you concluded on worthlessness
> of meditation.

I didn't say it is worthless.  Some people make wild and exaggerated
claims for meditation but like Bhakti, Upasana if done with the
proper attitude purifies and prepares one for Jnana.  I don't think it is
vital from the Vedantic point of view though.  The example of Gayatri japa
is a good one.  It gives just as much benefit as yogic practices because
it is also meditation.  I think Nanda was referring to the latter kind of
meditation not japa though.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at>

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