[Advaita-l] RE: On the parakAyapraveSa legend about Sankara

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Mon Apr 2 20:58:31 CDT 2007

>   i believe that with or without parakaya pravesa legend, glory of 
>   remains ever effulgent and more importantly for us his Word remains the 

Let me clarify. No one has said that WITHOUT the legends recounted in the 
digvijaya texts, the glory of Sankara becomes LESS effulgent. It goes 
without saying that the legends are peripheral to everything and do not 
affect anything materially.

On the other hand, some say that WITH the legends recounted in these texts, 
the glory of Sankara does become LESS effulgent. They have gone on to raise 
questions about the author(s) of these texts, claiming that

1. either the author deliberately maligns Sankara,
2. or he is stupid enough to include legends derogratory to Sankara, even 
though the original intention may have been to glorify him.

I dispute both of the above, with respect to the mAdhavIya Sankaravijaya 
text, for a variety of reasons. I also dispute the assumption that others 
among us find no problem with these legends merely because of a blind 
adherence to one or the other tradition within advaita vedAnta.

>   i would be very grateful, Vidyasankarji,  if you could throw a little 
>bit of light
>   on the process or mechanism of parakaya pravesa. Given that we have for 
>   vehicle the sthula, sukshma, and karana sarira, what is it that enters 
>   para-kaya? Also in the legend is it clear if the prana had left the body 
>of the
>   'dead' king?

The legend hinges upon the narrative that the king had just died.

There is hardly any source material that lays down the internal processes 
involved in this. One can rule out the sthUla SarIra of one person entering 
or merging into that of another. The yogasUtra says, "bandha kAraNa 
SaithilyAt parakAyapraveSaH" - the gist is that because of the wearing down 
of the cause of bondage, the Yogi can enter another body at will. Every jIva 
eventually enters other bodies, after the death of one body, but the Yogi is 
said to be able to control the transference at any time. One would have to 
infer that just as the sUkshma SarIra is the vehicle of taking on other 
bodies postmortem, even in the case of yogic parakAya praveSa, it is the 
sUkshma SarIra that enables it.

Best regards,

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