[Advaita-l] Importance of sannyAsa for study of VedAnta (was Fwd: [advaitin] Kanchi Maha-Swamigal's Discourses on Advaita Saadhanaa (KDAS-7))

Amuthan Arunkumar R aparyap at yahoo.co.in
Tue Sep 27 07:13:23 CDT 2005

namo nArAyaNAya!

dear list members,

i have heard from very reliable sources that only
sannyAsI-s and naishThika brahmachAri-s are adhikAri-s
for brahma j~nAnam. right now, i don't have references
to support this claim, but i guess someone can help me
out with that.

back to the point; while it seems perfect to say that
sannyAsam is more a mental phenomenon than a physical
change in one's lifestyle, i'd also like to point out
that there may be a *huge* difference in the quality
of AtmavichAram done by a sannyAsin and a gR^ihasta.
theoretically speaking, there shouldn't exist any such
differences in quality since anyone who studies the
upanishad-s is *supposed* to have already fulfilled
the sAdhana chatushThayam prerequisites. But from a
practical point of view, how many gR^ihasta-s can
fulfill these prerequisites in the midst of everyday
duties, obligations etc.? i'm not writing this to
discourage anyone, but i feel that a person who has
enough prerequisites will feel more inclined to adopt
nivR^itti dharmam (i.e. sannyAsam) than continue in
pravR^itti dharmam (let us not worry about
exceptions). if we let pragmatism to be our yardstick,
then sannyAsam (*both* physical and mental) seems more
appropriate for AtmavichAram. the same arguments above
also apply to naishThika brahmacharyam (provided the
naishThika brahmachAri-s live a life of tapas,
renouncing all their likes and dislikes).

i think it is precisely for the reason that
AtmavichAram is more appropriate for a sannyAsi that
the importance of bhakti is stressed for gR^ihasta-s.
i'm definitely not of the opinion that bhakti is
inferior to AtmavichAram, but it is a definitely a
truism that the sweet and easy(??) path of bhakti is
infinitely more easy for a gR^ihasta to follow than
the highly demanding and tough path of AtmavichAram.
it is also probable that sannyAsam as a separate
ASramam like gR^ihastASramam came into existence for
reasons similar to those mentioned earlier. 

this mail is not for *smart* gR^ihasta-s :-)

vAsudevaH sarvaM,

Amuthan Arunkumar R,
Final year, B.Tech/M.Tech Dual Degree,
Dept. of Aerospace Engg., IIT Madras.

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