[Advaita-l] Re: The current advaita-dvaita debate

Ram Chandran rchandran at cox.net
Tue Jun 24 07:12:14 CDT 2003


I totally agree with the sentiments expressed by Sri Shrisha Rao and Sri Anand Hudlin on the subject topic. After participating in various Internet list discussions over the past 10 years, I observed that email discussions are not suitable for debating the Vedantic schools of thought. It is time we should recognize the limitations of Internet discussion forums.  Starting from the days of AltHindu Bitnet discussions, such debates did not provide the correct perspective of the Vedantic thoughts of Acharyas. 

>From the Vedic times, we maintain a 'oral tradition' and debates were always conducted in the presence of learned and recognized scholars with open mind and infallible intellect. It is time to open our eyes and ears and remember the debate that took place long time back between Sankaracharya and Mandana Misra. The referee for their debate was Mandana Misra's wife Bharathi (considered reincarnation of Goddess Saraswati). The debate was not decided on the basis of the intellectual abilities of these two great masters. Instead, the debaters were garlanded with two identical flower garlands. These two great intellects had the humility to bow down to faith in the miracle of whether their respective garlands withered away or not. The debate continued for several weeks. Sankaracharya was declared the winner by the adjudicator, the wife of his opponent! Unfortunately, our ego driven intellect will not agree to conduct the debates and accept the result even they do not represent our viewpoint.  The advaita-dvaita discussions should be mostly attributable to the constraints of Internet discussions which require dedicated scholars with infinite patience who take time to read, understand and articulate their viewpoints without injecting emotions. 

Let conclude this post by endorsing Shrisha Rao's suggestion that  we should focus  more on propagating spirituality and morality in the society than discussing which school of Vedantic thought is right.

Warmest regards,

Ram Chandran

>From: Shrisha Rao <shrirao1 at mchsi.com>
>As such, without taking anything away from the basic validity of scholarly 
>and decorous Vedantic debate, it ought to be remembered that such debate is 
>only a small thing in the larger context, and should not be allowed to 
>interfere with the larger tasks of preserving and propagating morality in 
>society, and of securing for Vaidika studies the respect that they deserve. 
>  Otherwise, one's actions are liable to savor of uselessness and 
>ignorance, like re-arranging deck chairs on the Titanic.

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