Jnana and Bhakti

ken knight hilken_98 at YAHOO.COM
Fri Jan 25 03:59:37 CST 2002

--- Ravisankar Mayavaram <miinalochanii at YAHOO.COM>
> 1) advaita-vedAnta teaches two distinct paths:
> pravRtti and nivRtii
> maarga.
> 2) These two cannot be mixed and matched, and they
> are designed for
> different adhikaari-s.
> 3) nivRtii marga is j~nAna maarga and it comprises
> of shravaNa, manana
> and nidhidhyAsana.
> 4) adhikaari for nivRtti maarga is a sannyaasin.
> 5) Renunciation starts with external renunciation
> and through abhyAsa
> it leads to true inner renunciation.
> 6) It is a 20 century myth that only inner
> renunciation matters. It is
> false. Inner renunciation will come as a result of
> taking sannyAsa. Let
> us save janaka for better purposes.
> 7) For those who do not qualify for nivRtti maarga,
> there is pravRtii
> maarga.
> 8) PravRtti marga is based on karma and upaasana.
> 9) Done with the spirit of phala tyaaga to iishvara,
>  this will lead to
> chitta shuddhi and prepare the saadhaka for
> renunciation.
> 10)karma and jnAna are antagonistic to each other
> and cannot be
> practised simultaneously.
> 11) mukti is through jnAna only.
> 12) For mukti, jnAna is antaranga: internal or
> essential aid.
> 13) For mukti, karma and upAsana are at best
> bahiranga or external aid
> which is preparatory in nature.
> 14) bhakti depending on how it is defined can either
> fall into karma
> side or jnAna side.
> 15) bhakti with distinct bheda buddhi is upAsana and
>  it is a
> bahiranga. It is on karma maarga side.
> 16) bhakti if defined as nididhyAsana, that is a
> constant contemplation
> of  Atman (or God with underlying notion of identity
> abedha buddhi)
> falls on the jnAna side.
> -------------
> Key idea is pravRtti and nivRtti marga-s are for
> DIFFERENT adhikari-s
> well indicated in
> shankara bhaashya of iishaavasyopanishad.
> This is my understanding. I just wrote from the top
> of my head.  Please
> correct/comment; and forgive my ignorance. TIA.

Namaste Ravi,
Thank you so much for the clarity of the above and I
apologise for leaving it all there while replying but
it is too good to erase.  We can each lose our
ignorance by really hearing and reflecting on each of
your above points. Whatever I am going to write next
is not there to oppose you but to help each of us to
unravel our own knots.
Advaita by its very name transcends difference.
Beginning with 'Only that which has a boundary can be
divided' we can rest on/in the pathless path which is
advaita. Naturally a pathless path can have no
boundaries. As soon as we accept the word 'path' then
we will begin to divide and imagine separate paths.
That is valid but only from the point of duality.

Jumping to your last few points above:
Kaivalya Upanishad Verses 1 and 2 state:
'O Bhagavan, teach me the highest science of Reality,
cultivated always by the good people, which is ever a
hidden secret for man, a knowledge by which a wise
man, discarding all sins, can reach the Highest
To him the Grandsire ( Brahma) replied,'Know this by
means of faith devotion and meditation. (

Swami Chidmayananda writes in his commentary on this
'Devotion is love directed towards a higher ideal
whereby the devotee gains an unfoldment, experiences
an upliftment and thus comes to outshine his own
capabilities. This is essentially a function of the
heart: the Temple of Love is ever in the human heart.'
In relation to this you may also like to consider this
week's Gita Satsang ..8vs.11-15..on which Shankara
comments on the 'confining the mind within the heart.'

The way of knowledge, true vij~naana will transcend
mind, I would think, and a true use of 'neti,
neti'...inner renunciation, ( a 20th century
idea?).... will prevent the  claiming of knowledge
which will soon be covered and as a shadow of real
knowledge there will appear mere mental gymnastics.

The following is a quote from Sri Anandamayee from her
audiences in 1948:

'It happens that aspirants are driven in the direction
they are meant to go, although at first they are not
conscious of this, or even if they be, they are unable
to resist.
Suppose some people go to bathe in the sea and make up
their minds to swim ahead of everyone else;
consequently they will have to look back.  But for him
whose one and only goal is the Ocean Itself, no one
has remained for whose sake he looks back or is
concerned; and then, what is to be, will be.  Give
yourself up to the wave, and you will be absorbed by
the current; having dived into the sea, you do not
return anymore. The Eternal Himself is the wave that
floods the shore so that you may be carried away.
Those who can surrender themselves to this aim will be
accepted by Him.  But if your attention remains
directed to the shore you cannot proceed...after
bathing you will return home. If your aim is the
Supreme, the Ultimate, you will be led on by the
movement of your true nature.  There are waves that
carry away and waves that pull back.  Those who can
give themselves up will be taken by Him.  In the guise
of the wave He holds out His hands and calls come,
Come, COME.'

In my understanding only, the 'devotion' of that verse
in the Kaivalya Upanishad is the single-mindedness
giving birth to true renunciation that enables the
bather to plunge into the ocean and keep directed
towards that single aim.  Jnana, lower knowledge is
that which enables one to swim but the true knowledge,
the higher knowledge, is the unspoken call in the OM
in cOMe. It is the jnana sown in the womb of bhakti
that becomes parabhakti as suggested by Papa Ramdas in
my previous posting.

I am sorry if this is a bit of a jumble but these
words come as a first response to your inspiring

Om sri ram jai jai ram
Ken Knight

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