[Advaita-l] svAmI satchidAnandEndra sarasvatI (SSS)

Annapureddy Siddhartha Reddy annapureddy at gmail.com
Fri Feb 2 04:05:24 CST 2007

praNAm.h shrI Jayanarayanan,
       You mentioned that SSS does not admit of gradations in establishment
of AtmaGYAna. Could you provide some quotes from the works of SSS regarding

Below, I will provide some quotes which show that SSS did recognize
differences in establishment of AtmaGYAna. There is no difference in the
different grades of brahmaniShThas in that there would be no rebirth for any
of them. But from an empirical viewpoint, they still need to counteract the
pUrva vAsanas, and some amount of discipline is required for that (which is
exactly what svAmI vidyAraNya's point is in JMV).

The quotes are all from "The Method of Vedanta", A.J.Alston's translation of
SSS's "vEdAnta prakriya pratyAbhiGYA".

Pg. 144, ch. 3, sec. 55, last paragraph of SSS notes
On the other hand inner and outer control and the rest, along with absence
of pride and other qualities (prescribed at Gita XIII.7), are mere
auxiliaries, and there is no set limit to their observation. They are
intended for carrying knowledge to perfection, and whatever has that for its
purpose is itself an aspect of being established in knowledge (GYAna
niShTha). Hence, when we speak of resort to the means of knowledge coming to
an end when knowledge is acquired, it does not mean that these auxiliaries
also come to an end.

Pg. 159, ch. 3, sec. 59, quote 15
SSS refers to BSB 4.1.15

Pg. 160, ch.3, sec. 59, quote 16
SSS refers to Br.Bh. 1.4.10

Pg. 145, ch. 3, sec. 55, quote 10:
The duty laid down for his order (**wandering monk**) is in fact
establishment in (firm adherence to) a steadfast absorption in the Absolute,
fortified by inner and outer control and other such disciplines.

Pg. 152, ch. 3, sec. 57, quote 2:
In Sri Sankara's Brahma Sutra commentary it is said that even the
enlightened person, insofar as he conforms in life to the empirical
standpoint, may appear to be overpowered by vision of difference, and that
the life of contemplative sagehood is prescribed to counteract this. The
quotation in the previous sentence (omitted above) 'having known the Self'
shows that it is the truly enlightened person who is in question.


And as regards the paJNchapAdika, you reasoning was essentially, H.H.
supports JMV which supports paJNchapAdika, and since H.H. is jIvanmukta,
paJNchapAdika is authoritative (by the above chain of "supports").

The point is that jIvanmukti is no guarantee of shrOtriyatva, and AFAIK, SSS
claims that prior advaitins have erred in their interpretation of the vEda
(and not necessarily that they were not jIvanmuktas). In other words, again
AFAIK, SSS makes the case that mUlAvidyA is a deux ex machina for a
consistent interpretation of the vEda. And even assuming that SSS did
consider H.H. a jIvanmukta (I am not sure if he does/does not), unless H.H.
explicitly affirmed such a mUlAvidyA in his own perception (clearly not the
normal sensory perception, but probably some kind of meditative perception),
SSS's objections still stand.

To paraphrase the argument, mUlAvidyA is either perceptible or not. If not
perceptible, it's at best a theoretical tool which might as well be done
away with (per SSS). If it's perceptible (through meditation presumably),
then that would seriously challenge SSS's claims. Could someone maybe point
out if any jIvanmukta made any such claims about the perceptibility of


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