[Advaita-l] Advaita and other philosophies

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at braincells.com
Thu May 6 18:23:29 CDT 2004

On Wed, 21 Apr 2004, rohit ubhayaker wrote:

>     The Gaanapatyas centred around
>    Morgaon near Pune are unique among Vedaantins . Their most revered
>    saint is Shri Ganesha Yogeendra Svaami , whom they call an Avataara
>    of Lord Vinaayaka Himself . Their uniqueness is due to the fact that
>    they acknowledge Bhagavaan Shrimad Aadi Shankara as a Guru in their
>    Paramparaa ( which they claim is descended from the Shringeri Matha
>    ).  They follow the Advaitic school , though their philosophy is more
>    like Shrivaishnavism , with Vishnu being replaced by Vinaayaka
>    .However they are not fanatical , though they do claim that Lord
>    Ganapati is the highest . They say that in Kaliyuga , when the
>    religion of devotion to Ganapati was about to disappear , Shri Aadi
>    Shankara saved it . They also state that Shri Shankara visited
>    Morgaon and reformed the worship of Shri Mayooreshvara Vinaayaka
>  this school of philosophy is unique.

Actually there is one more.  The Udasins are the followers of Shrichand
the son of  Guru Nanak the founder of the Sikh religion.  While they
revere Guru Granth Sahib as their holy book they also consider
Shankaracharya their acharya and follow the tenets of Advaita Vedanta.
Formerly this sect was as numerous as the keshdharis (the turbanned people
we usually associate with the name Sikh) and had control of most of the
prominent Gurudwaras.  But two things happened.  During the 19th century,
the khalsa movement amongst the Sikhs moved to sharply define their
religion away from its Hindu roots and in some court battles the Udasins
lost their control of Sikh shrines.  Then in 1947 during the tragedy of
partition they lost a lot of their remaining property in Sindh and
Pakistani Punjab.  But they still survive and have produced some prominent
scholar saints.  For instance the book Vichara Sagara which was lauded by
such luminaries as Swami Chandrashekharendra Saraswati and Shri Ramana was
written by an Udasin named Swami Nischaladas.

Rohit you are in Mumbai right?  Do you know of the existence of a
Sadhubela Math?  My readings indicate it was one of the leading Udasin
Maths and was transplanted there from Sindh after Indias independence.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
It's a girl! See the pictures - http://www.braincells.com/shailaja/

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