[Advaita-l] A Brief Introduction to pUrva mImAmsA - 6 (Mantras)

Yadu Moharir ymoharir at yahoo.com
Thu Oct 13 12:31:33 CDT 2005

Namaste Ravi-Ji:


This dilemma what is important must have haunted our ancestors as well.  Just because the road is not easy does not work when it comes to knowledge.  Everyone on us want to preserve our cultural heritage, but how can we preserve it if we do not understand the associated meaning or it's significance.  This is like a bad driver trying to teach everything he knows to their kids and be proudly say - I taught him everything I know!!?.


diirghattamaa while praising veda he says comments -


R^ico axare parame vyoman yasmin devaa adhi vish{}ve niSheduH .
yastanna veda kimR^icaa kariShyati ya ittad vidusta ime samaasate .. R^igveda. 1.164.39 ..


(liberal translation) Gods reside in vedic R^icaa.  But if one does not understand their meaning then what is the use of such vead for him?  One who realizes this live together with understanding.


Acharya in vivekachuDamaNI places importance on understanding the meaning as well:


arthasya nish{}chayo dR^ishhTo vichaareNa hitok{}titaH .
na s{}naanena na daanena praaNaayamashatena vaa .. 13..


Finally, it is up to us whether we wish to learn or remain contented with "partial-understanding".  In this case we have really no right to blame Maculley for giving us wrong knowledge by establishing the education system that was suitable from Britishers.


Recent discussions - "If sanyaasa is required for moxa" will always remain in the cyber achieves of academic virtual reality.


moxasya na hi vaaso.asti na graamantarameva . adnyaana hR^idayagranthinaasho moxa iti smR^ita .. shivagiitaa 13.32 .. 


Meaning - moxa is not going from one place to another (Mumbai to Delhi or vaiku.nTha) but the amputation of the glands that secrete ignorance.


If we ask the question what is the # 1 reason for a project failure in any industry, corporation or the Government, it is always communication (Not understanding what was said).  This applies to vyavahaarikaa as well as parmarthika as well.




Dr. Yadu



Ravi Parimi <rparimi at gmail.com> wrote:
On 10/12/05, Jaldhar H. Vyas wrote:
> On Wed, 12 Oct 2005, Yadu Moharir wrote:
> > Namaste Jayanarayan-Ji:
> >
> > This is disturbing to learn that most teachers do not teach the meaning
> > of mantras. No wonder we have lost the core principle "j~nana vastu"
> > from the culture.
> >
> > If we accept this, then whatever we say has no meaning. All the words
> > and the combination there of become meaningless !!?
> >
> > This takes away the fundamental reasoning for language. I believe that
> > is why yaaskaa said art.m vaacaH puShpa phalaM.
> >
> > The definition of mantra is as I recall - matraaH mananaata. or mannaata
> > traayat iti mantraH
> >
> > It is also said - "mantraarta mantracaitanya yo na jaanatoi saadhakaH |
> > shatalaksha prajaptopi tasya mantro nasidhyati ||"
> >
> > Our yogashaastra tell us - tatjapastadarthabhaavanam || samaadhipaada
> > 1.28||.
> >
> > We all desire to preserve or defend our culture, but how can we defend
> > something, if we do not know what and why we are defending?
> >
> Note the meaning being discussed is the _literal_ meaning. Acharyas do in
> fact teach that this mantra is for agnihotra, this one for vivaha etc.
> And that is a "meaning" too. Not knowing the literal meaning of mantra is
> suboptimal and one should try and learn it. However not knowing the
> correct pronounciation of a mantra is a calamity. Hence the Acharyas put
> greater emphasis on pronounciation.

I second this. Mantras, I have been told, have inner, insightful
meanings than what appears on the surface. Gaining that level of
understanding is definitely desired. For a regular student of veda, it
takes about 8-10 years only to learn correct chanting of the veda
(padam, moolam and kramam). There is further study involved in
learning the peripheral meaning of Veda that takes about 5-6 years
more. BTW, the duration mentioned above is for students who learn veda

For those who study veda on a part-time/interest basis, getting to the
outer meaning is quite a long journey. IMHO, it requires guidance of a
guru and strict perseverance of reading books, sanskrit texts etc..
The amount of knowledge gained is only proportional to the time spent
on this study..

One needs to realize that for a common man, the journey towards
understanding mantras is very long and arduous..

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