[Advaita-l] How can one claim to know Brahman?

K Kathirasan NCS kkathir at ncs.com.sg
Sun Mar 20 20:46:09 CST 2005

Namaste Maheshji,

If you have the time, try to get hold of the book 'Introduction to Vedanta' by Swami Dayananda Saraswati. Although it may seem like an Introductory book, it is not. It handles all the subtleties of Advaita Vedanta in a clear manner. 

There is a lot of Truth in what Jaldharji is trying to convey. Try your best to get hold of this book. 

-----Original Message-----
From: advaita-l-bounces at lists.advaita-vedanta.org [mailto:advaita-l-bounces at lists.advaita-vedanta.org] On Behalf Of Mahesh Ursekar
Sent: Saturday, March 19, 2005 12:36 AM
To: advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] How can one claim to know Brahman?


All your points are well taken and I would agree to most of them. But the purpose of my mail was different. In my opinion, Brahman is not knowledge to be acquired (like we would do physics or chemistry) but knowledge to be lived. As Jaldhar has oft pointed out that we are all Brahman but have forgotten it, I can only say that we can remember this original state only when we live like the Master's did and not by understanding their subtle theories about why Brahman is Advaitic only or Vishistha Advaitic or Dwaitic! That makes you a pundit and not a Master!

Regards, Mahesh

On Fri, 18 Mar 2005 08:12:47 -0800, praveen.r.bhat at exgate.tek.com <praveen.r.bhat at exgate.tek.com> wrote:
> praNAm all,
> Forgive my jumping into the context...
> Maheshji wrote:
> > It is easy to sit in a comfortable study reading about loftly 
> > thoughts and flights of genius but how these ideas can be bought 
> > into our lives can only be learnt at the feet of the Masters and by 
> > reading about their lives. And for that very reason Sri 
> > Sankaracharya is not the best example. A genius no doubt but only 
> > his ideas are well established.
> May I humbly object to this statement? Its vague to say that *only* 
> his ideas are well established. If I say that I'm unable to capture 
> the essence as written by Shankara, is it not my understanding that is 
> at fault, in the same way that no matter how much ever a *master* 
> teaches, there's no guarantee that I'll understand? I'll try to relate 
> something that I read in Swami Venkatesananda's book... he says that 
> when someone talks/writes (source/guru), its *conveying*, but one can 
> *communicate* only when the other (disciple) raises himself to the 
> level of the source.
> Maheshji wrote:
> > His biography, other than a few facts, is shrouded in mystery. Which 
> > is probably apt since the whole purpose of his life was to settle 
> > the storm of confusion that prevailed in India in those times by 
> > stellar debate and argumentation.
> How could it have been the *whole* purpose of his life? It may have 
> been
> *one* of the purposes, since we do have his works for our aid!
> Maheshji wrote:
> > The danger in that is that
> > if one takes to the study his works, one could become a proverbial 
> > pundita but be nowhere closer to the real knowledge of Brahman!
> Perhaps... but only based on one's own limitations! In a similar 
> argument, no master can probably take all to liberation, else all 
> disciples of known masters would have been liberated (and its a good 
> guess that they're not).
> jai bajrangabali,
> --praveeN
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