[Advaita-l] Re: Vivekachudamani vs Bhashyas

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Wed Aug 20 13:24:04 CDT 2003

> > Sankaracarya says about maintaining a steady remembrance of
> > Atma-vijnAna in
> > bRhad-bhAshya 1.4.7 is the process of perfecting brahmajnAna.
>Shankara merely gives it a passing glance. The works of later advaitins
>are needed to fill in the details.

It is more than a passing glance, in my opinion, because he consistently 
labels some upanishadic statements as niyama vidhi-s, across different 
upanishad commentaries. It seems to me that the force with which Sankara 
argues against original injunctions (apUrva vidhi) in vedAnta causes most 
scholars to ignore this fact, as also to ignore what he sees as the content 
of the niyama vidhi. I also think this because he takes care to introduce 
the parisaMkhyAna meditation in a prose chapter of upadeSasAhasrI, and gives 
numerous details in gItAbhAShya, which are not mentioned in the gItA itself. 
So he does not leave questions of method unaddressed.

>"Doctrinal variations" needs clarification. For the record: I never
>ever claimed that the VC was espousing doctrines opposed to
>Shankara-BhAshhyas, and I even explained this carefully.

Yes, I acknowledge this and also point out that in an earlier mail, I agreed 
that the usage of vAsanA in VC does seem post-Sankaran. However, what I have 
been addressing in the series of posts in the past few days is the broader 
issue of how one determines Sankara's authorship. It has been my finding so 
far that the upanishad commentaries contain many hidden surprises that 
should be carefully studied, before one makes a firm conclusion about any 
prakaraNa text. Till such time as a comprehensive study of all the important 
bhAShyas is done, I, personally, prefer to withhold judgment. And it is 
precisely for this reason that I think that a lot of the opinions about 
authorship of various prakaraNa texts seem to be prejudiced conclusions 
based on insufficient data.


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