Forwarded message: Jivanmukti as per Advaita-Vedanta FAQ

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Thu Mar 9 10:44:17 CST 2000

On Fri, 3 Mar 2000, Jaldhar H. Vyas wrote:

> As per Vidyasankar's Advaita-Vedanta FAQ, Jivanmukti has been stated as :
> Advaita holds that realization of brahman is possible on this earth itself.
> The highly evolved seeker, who approaches vedAntic study with a pure mind,
> and a strong tendency of mumukshutva, is fit to really experience brahman.
> One who has actually realized brahman, is a jIvanmukta - he is liberated
> while still living.
> Is this the view held by Sringeri shankaracharya as well.

Yes.  He is the spiritual descendant of Swami Vidyaranya who adorned the
pitha of Srngeri during the 14th century.

> Because as per
> Jivanmukti Viveka of Sri Vidyaranya, Knower of Brahman need not be
> Jivanmukta. To become a Jivanmukta, he has to work towards Manonaasha,
> Vasanaakshaya. For this he may take Vidvat Sannyasa. He also quotes
> Yajnavalkya as an example, where he says Yajnavalkya had knew(realized)
> Brahman during the debate. But he took Sannyasa to work towards Jivanmukti.

At this point Yajnavalkya has already become a jnani but there is
still the remnant of the effect of former karma.  It is like if you drive
really fast and then hit the brakes.  The car still moves forward a bit
before halting because of its prior momentum.  This is why even for one
who has realized Brahman there is still the matter of manonasha and

> And also, as per Bhagavadgita(I don't remember the verse), if one leaves the
> body by concentrating between the eyebrows etc; then he gets liberated. And
> I suppose only a Knower of Brahman, like say Swami Vivekananda, can do such
> an act during death. But if one is already Jivanmukta, all these acts during
> death seem superfluous.

I don't think Krishna Bhagawan is implying that that is the only way to
get moksha but it may be one possible way.  As you say for a Jivanmukta it
would be superfluous.  But regardless of the method, as per Advaita
Vedanta, moksha can only come through jnana.

> And also if we look at many saints, there definitely seems to two groups,
> saints like Sri Ramakrishna, Ramana Maharishi, Swami Chandrasekhara Bharati
> etc are a class apart ..... being Jivanmuktas. But others realised souls
> have definitely known something ...can call it Brahman ??  And also if we go
> thru' some lectures of Sri Chandrasekhara Bharati's disciple, Sri Abhinava
> Vidyathirtha, he says "he had Nirvikalpa Samadhi when he was 15  or 20
> years"(I don;'t remember). But definitely he did not become a Jivanmukta,
> then.

Karma cannot in anyway cause jnana.  But it helps in a roundabout way by
destroying the obstacles that prevent jnana.  The effects of karma may not
be just due to actions performed in this life but in prior lives.  If
there seems to discrepencies like you mention in the lives of saints it is
because of this prarabdha karma.

> Can some learned member of the group clarify this doubt. Or am I
> misinterpreting
> realization of Brahman with Knowing of Brahman ??

Once Brahman is known, moksha is inevitable but does not necessarily
immediately follow for the reason mentioned above.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at>

bhava shankara deshikame sharaNam

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