[Advaita-l] Sandhyopasana - Savita

Sunil Bhattacharjya sunil_bhattacharjya at yahoo.com
Mon Mar 16 17:11:07 CDT 2009

Dear Rameshji,


In Uttara Gita Lord Krishna says "Pratimā alpabuddhinām sarvatra samadarshinām". I think an advaitin may worship a deity in a pratima but sooner or later he realises that Brahman is everything including him and is everywhere and need not be imagined through a pratima. Nirakara can mean that there is no definable fixed akara and it need not necessarily mean  non-existence.


Sunil K. Bhattacharjya

--- On Mon, 3/16/09, Ramesh Krishnamurthy <rkmurthy at gmail.com> wrote:
From: Ramesh Krishnamurthy <rkmurthy at gmail.com>
Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Sandhyopasana - Savita
To: "A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta" <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
Date: Monday, March 16, 2009, 9:24 AM

2009/3/16 Sundaresan, Vidyasankar (GE Infra, Water)
<vidyasankar.sundaresan at ge.com>:
> The pratIka is an aid to concentrating the mind. If one has developed
> the ability to concentrate on brahman without the use of an external
> symbol, then one does not have to rely on it.

I have never been quite able to appreciate the above point, though I
have heard this from many people many times. It seems to imply that
using a pratIka, perhaps a yantra or a vigraha, is somehow inferior to
not using one. In other words, upAsanA of the nirAkAra is somehow
above upAsanA of the sakAra.

The point I am trying to make is that, at least as far as advaita is
concerned, there is ultimately no such thing as an object of upAsanA.
Within the dualistic realm however, the supposedly nirAkAra upAsya is
as much an object as a sakAra upAsya. Otherwise, one would end up
making the absurd claim that brahman is just a nirAkAra upAsya rather
than the Atman! It does not make sense therefore, to say that one is
"concentrating on brahman" just because a pratIka is not being used.
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