[Advaita-l] BrahmaGYAna and jIvanmukti - 5 (Other References)

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Sun Feb 18 16:39:11 CST 2007

>I would like to know whether there is any difference between gyAni mAtra
>and hiraNyagrabhOpAsaka-s??  why I am asking this question is I've found
>references in sUtra bhAshya that shankara seems to  imply that these brahmA
>(hiraNyagarbha) upasaka-s as
>bramavida-s/brahmavits/saMyagdarshi/brahmajnAni...While talking about the
>result of brahmOpAsana shankara says the mode of graduated departure of the
>upAsaka-s as same as ordinary persons but he will take the path of gods
>(dEvayAna) and reaches brahmalOka to get amrutatva...Here, subsequent
>objection with respect to amrutatva (immortality)  & shankara's answer to
>that are very interesting...But first I wanted to know whether I can
>interpret jnAnimAtra as hiraNyagarbhOpAsaka??

That would be a very narrow interpretation. To begin with, we need to be 
very clear in our minds about terminology. As far as I know, Sankara 
bhagavatpAda does not use the term jnAnimAtra in his works. When 
vidyAraNyasvAmin uses the term jnAnimAtra, he refers to someone who has had 
a glimpse of the Atman, but has not understood the truth fully and is not 
established in it. They may or may not be worshippers of saguNa brahman. In 
actuality, we may find that most of them do indeed follow saguNa upAsana, 
but theoretically, there is no such constraint. We may also argue back and 
forth about whether the jnAnImAtra is actually an ajnAnI in a strict sense, 
but that is neither here nor there.

hiraNyagarbhopAsaka-s are worshippers of saguNa brahman, via a very specific 
set of vidyA-s described in the upanishads. Yes, Sankara bhagavatpAda 
extends the term samyagdarSin and brahmavit to them also, but we must note 
that he refers to this in the context of krama-mukti or liberation by 
stages, not in the context of jIvanmukti or sadyomukti.



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