The importance of sampradaya
Jaldhar H. Vyas
jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Mon Apr 29 22:32:56 CDT 2002
On Thu, 25 Apr 2002, Ashish Chandra wrote:
> I thought Smartas were those that followed the Smritis, not necessarily
> followers of Adi Shankaracharya and his line. For example, we follow the
> smritis but I don't know if I have ever heard that we are followers of his
> tradition, even though there is much reverence for the Jyotirmath Peetha.
This is another one of those words that can have different meanings in
different contexts. Yes, in the broadest sense, a Smarta is a follower of
Smrtis. Such a definition would include all astikas even Vaishnavas
A more typical usage is to describe the sampradaya of which Shankaracharya
is the most famous exponent (but not the founder.) In many cases it
involves a formal affiliation with a math but it can include all those who
share his approach to tradition.
The third usage is to describe certain Brahman castes of Southern India
I meant the latter two definitions--those people who have a formal
allegience whether by birth or disciplehood to the smarta ideals.
Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
It's a girl! See the pictures - http://www.braincells.com/shailaja/
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