[Advaita-l] RE: Ramesh - Namaste

Krishnamurthy Ramakrishna puttakrishna at verizon.net
Tue Jan 9 12:20:35 CST 2007

Sri Ramesh Badisa wrote on 1/08/07

Namaste. Your yesterday's article in advaita vedanta list was very
interesting. I will be grateful to you if you could let me know the
'references' for your following statement:


You have said, " The scriptures say that, if the seeker comes to an
understanding that the Guru is unable to help him in the realization of
Atman, he should at once reject that Guru and seek the help of a competent



Ramesh B Badisa


 KR  - 1/09/07

PraNAms Ramesh ji

Thank you for the question. The most often quoted source is Shankara
bhagavatpAda's gIta bhAshya for Verse 13-2, "kshEtrajnyam chApi mAm viddhi..
". The bhAshya says

"...AtmahA svayam mUDhah anyAn cha vyAmOhayati shAstrArtha-sampradAya
rahittvAt  shrutihAnim ashrutakalpanAm cha kurvan | tasmAt asampradAyavit
sarvashAstravidapi mUrkhavadEva upEkShaNIyah||"

. Such a guru, ignorant of Atma sampradAya, has himself committed "Atma-hana
- suicide of the self", he himself is a mUDha or ignorant and will allure
gullible students. Therefore, though he is knowledgeable of shAstra, void of
sampradAya or tradition, he should be rejected as a fool.

What is Atma sampradAya? vEdAnta sampradAya is that tradition by which the
duality of the jagat (world) we experience is used as an instructional tool
(adhyArOpa) and negate or reject (apavAda) its reality using the shAstra
pramANa and related logic (this is something similar in concept to the
proofs of geometry theorems - like converse theorems - wherein the
stipulation is challenged; then developing a proof of the challenge, the
challenger ends up with an absurd result - Reductio ad absurdum - and
withdraws the challenge). To be able to instruct properly the tradition of
adhyArOpa and apavAda (which we will review later), the guru himself must be
a realized person - that is has known the self. The underlying message is
that only a realized person can guide the student, and not a guru who has
shAstra pAnditya or book knowledge (a panDita is one who only has shruti
knowledge). Such a guru must be rejected and the mumukShu must seek a guru
seated in the self or Brahman.

The following mantra from munDaka upanishat (1.2.13) drives home this point

"tasmai  sa vidvAnupasannAya samyak prashAnta chittAya shamAnvitAya

yEnAkSharam puruSham vEda satyam prOvAcha tAm tatvatO brahmavidyAm " - the
vidvAn must teach the qualified student who has approached him, the
brahmavidya, that he himself has experienced by knowing the akShara satya

" sa guruh paramakripayA adhyArOpa-apavAda-nyAyEna Enamupadishai " - That
guru, with intense compassion and grace, will teach brahmavidya to the
student via the logic of adhyArOpa and apavAda.

Another source quoted is from MahabhArata - shanti parva (577), in which
bhagavAn vEdavyAsa has said

"gurOh apyavaliptasya kAryA-karyam ajAnatah utpatha pratipannasya parityAgO
vidhiyatE" - A person who is arrogant, engaged in activities lacking the
discrimination of the right and wrong kArya (activity), he should be
rejected, though he is a guru.

(I could not find this verse in my edition - a 32 volume publication of
mahAbhArata in kannada from the bhArata darshana publication, karnAtaka. If
someone can locate this verse ain some other publication and post it in this
list, that would complete the sources for this topic.)

K. Ramakrishna.

Hari OM

shAntih shAntih shAntih

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