[Advaita-l] Why Yoga is not a Pramana ??

Sundaram, Vaidya (MED) Vaidya.Sundaram at med.ge.com
Mon Jun 30 15:36:38 CDT 2003

Namaskaram Sada-ji 
 - let me expose my ignorance in the hope I will be corrected. My note
is a little long since I am trying to understand some of the nuances.
Kindly bear with me.

I recognize first of all the following statement of yours, and yes, I
understand it the same way too:

> Upasana and karma yoga etc are all only for 
> the purification  of the mind - for prerequisite 
> qualifications for the  shruti 
> statement  to work directly.  

Having said that, I am not sure I understand the nuances of the
> Aproskhaanubhuuti implies direct and immediate.
> Tat tvam asi - that involves bhaagatyaga lakshaNa - involves immediate
> knowledge - just as in soyam devadattaH - this is that Devadatta
> -statement. Provided if one knows who is that Devadatta and seeing
> Devadatta and when teacher says he is that Devadatta - there is no
> further karma or upaasana required to recognize that fact.

Take the statement "this is that Devadatta" - As you mentioned, the
person must already know of (or qualities of) Devadatta. The statement
"this is that Devadatta" results in the extra correlation made that the
one who was previously qualified as such and such, for example, 6 ft
tall, loud voice, well built etc etc., is this person he now beholds
(with his eye or senses?) - this requires that the person already knows
(atleast some) attributes of Devadatta to now make the correlation
between the already known and now revealed Devadatta. And in this
statement, the thing pointed to, namely Devadatta, is rather clear. Am I
right up to here? 

Now, proceeding on, in the case of "tat tvam asi" pointing to the
already known Brahman, the analogy is that it will immediately bring all
correlations into place. However, and here is my confusion/ignorance -
the thing pointed to is nothing but one's own Self. Being self evident,
it should not have needed pointing to in the first place. The fact that
it needs pointing to means that the perception or vision or what ever we
wish to call it is turned or directed elsewhere, in an outward direction
if you will, for want of a better description. So, the Vedas can keep
saying "tat tvam asi, tat tvam asi" any number of times. As long as the
"perception" is not ready to see it, it does not matter. The realization
is direct and immediate only **after** realization - until that, it is
impossible to either confirm or deny. 

 It is somewhat like the 3D Stereograms. It's just a mass of gibberish
on the screen until the brain figures out the hidden image. (for
example, visit the following site for a good set of examples -
http://www.softsource.com/softsource/stereo.html) - the description can
say, the gibberish is really a helicopter, has so many rotors, tilted at
such an angle etc. But, as long as the image is not seen, it is never
understood. So, saying this is that helicopter after one sees it is
meaningless because all descriptions become self evident. Just
presenting the "gibberish" image and saying just look will suffice. Once
seen, no pointing to is needed. After the hidden image is seem, there is
no mistaking it. It was always there. The instruction book which said
hold your eyes 5 to 6 inches away, and unfocus your eyes etc etc. are
just aids. Not the means.

 So also (as I understand) with realization of the self. The perception
is not ready to understand and see beyond the gibberish of samsara. The
role of the Vedas (in my understanding, and I am NOT trivializing it),
is to tell us, look beyond the gibberish. And if one does not still see,
then we have to read the instructions of the Vedas, in the form of karma
to be performed, and then perception becomes automatic. Such a
perception is automatic once the pre-requisites are met. It is immediate
and direct only after the individual is ready. Not prior. 

 Am I right here? 

> What you implied is if the student does not have the prerequisite
> qualifications - then he needs to purify the mind

 Sada-ji. I think all our discussions are necessarily in the realm of
the individual who does NOT have the pre-requisite qualifications. If
the qualifications are there, the knowledge of the Self, being evident
on its own, is full and complete. One need not even discuss this as a
separate case in my opinion. 

Kindly correct any mistakes.

bhava shankara desikame sharaNam

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