Sankara SampradhAyam - 6

Dr. S.R.Marur smarur at EASI.SOFT.NET
Fri Aug 20 00:55:21 CDT 1999

[*vEdic*] karmAs advocated by pUrva mimAmsa, the principle of Ishvara
established by nyAyA and dhyAna-vichAra practised by Bhuddhism which
negated both karma and Ishvara, exist as different phases/parts of
AchAryAl's advaita. However, when these schools of thought focussed
only on a particular phase/level of [*spiritual evolution*] and got
stuck at that phase itself,  AchAryAl  gave His school of thought
which accomodated each one of them at its suitable level.

As other siddhAnthAs stopped at a particular level, He argued with
them too.

VaidhIka karmAs, no doubt, are acceptable to AchAryAl. The stand
of pUrva mimAmsakAs that neither bhAkthi nor gyAnA is required,
however, was not acceptable to Him. He advised, "The karmAs you do
can not yield fruits by themselves. Karma is a jada vasthu. Therefore,
the person who bestows the 'phala' for the karmas is only IshvarA.
It is He who has ordained so many karmas through vEdAs, inorder to
carry out the activities of this lOkA. The fruit of any karma done,
therefore, should be offered to Him only. We have to engage in karmas,
which are given to us, to be carried out, for the welfare of the
whole world and offer the fruits thereof back to Him. Only we when do
that, more than the direct fruit of the karma, due to the renouncing
of the karma-phala, we will get the greatest fruit of all - chitha
shuddhi [*purity of mind*].

Similarly, He argued with NaiyAyikAs, "It is not sufficient to
establish the existence of Ishvara by logic alone. That logic has to
result in direct experience. The direct experience of Ishvara has to
lead to the realisation, in the end, that there exists nothing that
He is not. The culmination of bhakthi, at its zenith, is the advaitic
realisation that even we don't exist as a different one from Him" and
established advaita.

If we engage always in the vichAra/dhyAna such as, "Who are we? What
is the Truth ? What is dhukhA ? etc" overcoming the pulls and
pressures of attachments, then we may also get the clarity/revelation
such as the one BhuddhA had got. There is also a view point which
says, "BhuddhA has not mentioned about Ishvara directly. Though he
hasn't defined nirvAna exactly, he hasn't objected to Ishvara
explicitly either. Therefore, it could be possible that he could've
obtained the advaitic gyAna; only that he couldn't express it in words
properly". Even then, is it possible for every one to engage in dhyAna
and vichAra ? Does one not require to have pre-requisite [*spiritual*]
maturity ? Yes, it is required. That is why vEdic dharmA has
prescribed karma and bhakthi as a prelude (to gyAna). Only after
obtaining purity (shuddhi) and one-pointedness (IkAkriyam) of the mind
through karma and bhakthi respectively, one can engage in gyAna
vichAra about the truth.

The vEdAs and smrithis have classified the vEdic karmas based on the
maturity of varieties of jivAs and also for the welfare of the world
and prescribed them as varna-dharma and Ashrama-dharma. Based on the
adhikAri bhEdham - when such and such a section [*of the society*]
engages only in such and such a vocation, not only they'll obtain
srEyas but also contribute to the welfare of the world - various
karmAs and upAsana mArgams have been classified and prescribed by

As Bhuddhism overlooked all these factors, rejected the vEdhOktha
karma, upAsanA etc and prescribed dhyAna-vichAra for all without
taking the 'adhikAri bhEdham' into consideration, the activities
of the lOka would be disturbed; except for a rare one or two
like BhuddhA, as others may not get enlightenment [*by such an
approach*] AchAryAl condemned even Bhuddhism. As mentioned earlier,
the condemnation of Bhuddhism, carried out in a massive scale earlier
by both Kumarila Bhatta and UdayanAchArya was completed by AchAryAl!

                                    .... to be continued



Translated from,
HH Sri Chandhra sEkharEndhra Saraswathi Swamiji, 'Sankara
SampradhAyam'. Deivathin Kural (in Tamil), Vol. II, Second
Edition, ed. rA. Ganapathi, Vanathi padhippagam, Chennai,
pp: 119-157 (1980).

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