[Advaita-l] RE: Sankaracharya
M. S. Ravisankar
ravi at ambaa.org
Mon Apr 19 16:52:51 CDT 2004
Here are my 2c on this matter.
- By far most agree with the the original and ancient status of shringeri
and a lot disagree with kAnchi's position. This includes unbiased saints,
such as Paramahansa Yogananda (he also met kAnchi paramAcharya during his
visit in 1935 in Calcutta). Hence, I think the responsibility of coming out
of with a clear evidence is on kAnchi maTha.
- As a devotee, it is not your obligation to take up the debate of proving
kAnchi's status. The teachings of kAnchi maTha are quite in line with
shankara and all you need do is follow it. At least that is how I see it.
One thing I learnt over a period of time is to be utilitarian even in this
realm and not to be encumbered by needless wranglings. This applies to other
matters such as Sankara vs Ramanuja.
- Whose obligation it is? It is the obligation of AchArya-s and they should
resolve at their level. Only then this matter will die down.
- Date of shankara and status of the maTha-s are indeed legitimate questions
and if one is academically interested and pursuing this matter it is fine.
If that is not your goal, and your goal is spiritual progress, then it is
better to leave this to the top. I am not even saying you have to accept
one of them. You can simply choose to accept that you do not know.
- If someone asks me about a) date of shankara b) the works he composed
etc., I will tell them I do not know for certain. We know for sure some
works are genuine and some are being debated. In any case we should apply
Valluvar (tamil saint)'s words (epporuL yaar yaar vaay) that we should study
carefully and conclude irrespective of who said it.
- I know that there are consequences, for instance kAnchi was never a
original maTha and a upa-maTha of shringeri, then someone up the line must
have fabricated this lie. It is bad and shameful. But as a devotee is it
shameful to me? No. It is not me who lied. As long as I am clear in what I
accept by faith and what I assume, then I suffer no damage.
My family is also affiliated to kAnchi maTha and I am quite indebted to
paramAcharya as well as the current acharya-s. Even though I respect them, I
see no reason to agree with them on all matters. Even though I do not have
any opinion on this matter (status of kAnchi maTha) now, I grew up with the
idea that kAnchi was/is a upa-maTha. Only in 2001 I decided not have any
specific opinion on this matter and say that I do not know.
I apologize in advance if I hurt yours or anybody else's feeling. I wrote
this simple because I do not want you to lose your peace of mind on a matter
such as this. I also feel that Vidyasankar has been quite objective in his
discussion [now and in the past](hence I disagree with what you have written
As administrator of this list I think we should ban this discussion (we have
gone over this at least three + times). Since our list is not moderated, we
have no way to enforce such a ban.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Ravishankar Venkatraman [mailto:sunlike at hotmail.com]
> Sent: Saturday, April 17, 2004 1:21 PM
> To: advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
> Subject: RE: [Advaita-l] RE: Sankaracharya
> Vidyasankar Sundaresan wrote:
> >examining concrete evidence. Well, there are inscriptions in
> Tanjavur, of
> >grants given in the mid-1700's to Brahmana scholars who were
> co-students of
> >Sadasiva Brahmendra. Now, one may believe that
> I wish that the same enthusiasm and frankness is applied to all the
> arguments made, instead of conveniently choosing selective ones. Such a
> convenient usage of interpretation and presenting the evidence
> has made this
> situation very dogmatic...
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