[Advaita-l] Sringeri and Kanchi - same incident?

Lakshmi Muthuswamy lakmuthu at yahoo.com
Mon Jun 19 11:25:31 CDT 2006

Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian <rama.balasubramanian at gmail.com> wrote: Greetings,

Mahasannidhanam himself has said that miracles can happen, but they are very rare and many seemingly paranormal occurences have rational explanations. For example, he has explicitly said that we can train ourselves to get quite a bit of information by looking at the changes in expression of various people. Normally people don't pay much attention, so they miss these things. I myself have a very skeptical attitude regarding miracles (even with regard to saints who I have high regard for),
although I do believe from shastra, and from Shankaras comments in the
suutra bhaaShya, that they might happen.

This topic on miracles can open a good discussion on the siddhis attained due to sadhana mentioned in the Yoga Sutra of patanajali in the third chapter Vibhooti pAda and also the vibhUti yoga of Bhagavad Gita.
Miracles - this word is used by an onlooker as a laymna who may not have an exposure to the saastras and may get carried away by them.

For a yogi who has been practising Ashtanga yogabhyasa will call it as siddhis attained due to abhayasa. The sAdhana pAda the second chapter mentions the Abhyasa of ashtAnga yoga and the phalam of the abhyAsa thereof in the third chapter vibhUti pAda. There are quite a few listed. There is no emphasis or mention of any particular practice to gain the siddhi . This requires years of intense training and abhyAsa in this janma under the guidance of a competent AchArya or may fructify with very little abhyAsa as a continuation of the previous janma. At the end of the chapter Sage Patanjali  also says that siddhis are a hinderance to spiritual sAdhana.  

Yoga practioners, if they have experienced any one of the siddhis mentioned, they go on a mental trip calling them as psychic experience. Spend their lives seeking these experiences again and again and may be more and more of them.  Sometimes they can go insane. Sometimes they get stuck poerforming these siddhis and lure the common man.

Among the list of siddhis understanding ones own mind and others state of mind is also a siddhi. A person who has continuosly, religiously and intensely done abhyasa for years can recognise this. This is due to tapo balam, vak and kaya and mano sudhhi. This is attainable.
A jnAni can identify these paranormal occurances, may expose if the situation warrants or may just smile and keep moving recognising it as a play of the mind.
This is mAnasam karma.

The study of Vedanta sAstra helps in understanding that the siddhis as only external and its  only a  phalam of an abhyAsa.

This is my understanding and if I am wrong I stand to be corrected.

om namo narayanaya
Lakshmi Muthuswamy

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