[Advaita-l] Grace of God

Siva Senani Nori sivasenani at yahoo.com
Wed Jun 27 00:30:43 CDT 2007

sarvebhyo namaH

In the course of a private exchange, Sri Prem had brought up the issue of "grace of God" and has made some observations and posed some questions, which I thought can be much better answered by some members of the list. With the hope that both Sri Prem's observations and the ensuing discussion would be of general list, I am posting Sri Prem's message to the list.


----- Forwarded Message ----
From: prem d p <prem_d_p at yahoo.co.in>
To: Siva Senani Nori <sivasenani at yahoo.com>
Sent: Sunday, June 24, 2007 11:19:44 PM
Subject: Re: sruti

dear sri sivasenani,
thank you for your response. on the subject of 'grace of God' i think there is lot
more to discuss and it might turn out to be crucial for our understanding of 
moksha itself.
as you have pointed out the subject is intimately related to the problem of free
will. freedom and will themselves are deep topics. i see that you personally 
take the position that focus on self-will is sufficient and a pre-occupation with
'grace of God' is not then so important.
i was first led into a lot of confusion by the analogy of dream and phenomenal world and the apparent lack of any nexus between it and brahman. i was 
puzzled by the paradox of 'purposelessness' and the existence of 
'urge for jnana' or 'moksha'. mumukshutva was like a link existing between the
dream state and the waking state, a link which was apparent to the dreamer. 
what compounded the problem was the fact that the subject in the dream is 
obviously not the same as the subject of the waking state though the individual 
enlivens both.
then it dawned on me that perhaps 'puposelessness' and 'mumukshutva' are 
opposing currents/directions within maya and directionality was the essential 
nature of prakriti or maya.
i have reconciled all of the above by trying to reflect on the meaning of the 
words 'freedom' and 'will'. it occurs to me that in duality 'freedom' has to be 
spoken of always in relation to 'will'. and the will of the jada may be considerd
as the familiar natural law.
we know that in the phenomenal world there is no perfect free will possible for 
the limited entity, as its perceptions and will is moulded by the phenomenality 
around it. it thinks and wills in terms of the percepts & concepts. but being 
beset by limitations in the exercize of will, the limited entity embarks on the 
quest for that perfect freedom. this quest is the direction of mumukshutva. 
'grace of God' is often spoken of as that turn of events culminating in this right 
direction. ie. an apparent impossibility of free will turning miraculously yet 
inexorably towards freedom.
what do you think?

Siva Senani Nori <sivasenani at yahoo.com> wrote:
----- Original Message ----
From: prem d p <prem_d_p at yahoo.co.in>
To: sivasenani at yahoo.com
Sent: Sunday, June 17, 2007 10:24:46 PM
Subject: sruti

btw a related question........what is 'grace of God'?

Dear Sri Prem
My first instinct was to reply that there is nothing called daivam (related to God, and pretty much meaning bhagavatkripA, grace of God), only paurusham (related to purusha) is, as is said in the yogavAsishTham. At least in practice, I do not depend on BhagavtkripA, and try to work at getting the desired result.
The correct view, I think, is that bhagavatkripA is indeed what it is normally understood to be, resulting in such things as rains, good luck etc. Only it is as ephemeral as the rest of the world, and hence not worthy as a final goal. After all, we have Sankaracharya himself praying "mama dehi karAvalambam" - or asking for the grace of God.


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