[Advaita-l] Knowledge, renunciation and varNASrama rules

Bhaskar YR bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com
Thu Aug 19 01:09:36 CDT 2010

praNAms Sri praveen prabhuji
Hare Krishna

Thanks for the clarification that Acharya doesn't say it one way or the
other explicitly anywhere. 

>  Yes, this is as far as my knowledge goes...but I am not sure..But for 
the question:  Is the saNyAsatva must for the mumukshu to attain jnAna?? 
The answer is saNyAsa is necessary (agatya) but it is not 'anivArya'.  It 
is said in the Itareya bhAshya that vAma deva has attained this jnAna in 
his mother's womb by the virtue of his 'pUrva janma sAdhana'.  Anyway, 
there is no 'idamitthaM' answer to the question whether saNyAsa is 
compulsory to attain brahma jnAna. 

I'm curious to know which persons are historical examples 
pre-Shankaracharya/Gaudapadacharya period who have taken to formal 

>  Sorry prabhuji could not understand this question !!

The qualities acquired via sAdhana cAtuShTaya are seen in the case of
Nachiketa, etc, to be eligible for Vedanta teaching, not moksha to be 

>  Again I am not able to follow your line of thinking here...Do you mean 
to say after fulfilling the requirements of sAdhana chatushtaya one can 
start vedAnta chintana (brahma jignAsa) & as a result he can acquire jnAna 
(vedAnta vAkya janita jnAna) but for the mOksha one has to take formal 

So is it fair to say that after the teaching giving rise to brahmajnAna, 
we do not know whether they continued their lives as earlier or took to 

>  to attain mOksha??  again it goes back to unresolved issue here in this 
list :-)) IMHO, there is no interval between brahmajnAna and mOksha prApti 
to say that one can, in any ashrama, start doing vedAnta chitana and 
attain brahma jnAna but to get mOksha one has to become saNyAsi!!

I'd like to know if you know or believe its one way or the other about 
such example figures. In most 
cases, I understand the story ends with the teaching and the adhikAri 
realizing his true Self.

>  Yes, and there is no special mention of their journey through saNyAsa 
Ashrama 'after' brahma jnAna 'but' to attain mOksha..I dont think 
yamadharma rAja (mrutyudeva)after giving the jnAna of 'death',  has 
specifically asked nachiketa to take saNyAsa for the attainment of mOksha. 
 avidyA nivrutti itself mOksha and mOksha is NOT a future event after 
jnAna prApti...Shankara's sUtra bhAshya  on tattusamanvayAt is useful in 
this regard.

I mentioned brAhmaNa or dvija earlier, as in those who were eligible for 
agni kArya. And the idea behind such mention was that brahmaj~nAna, to my 
limited knowledge, is rare in case of a non-saMnyAsi, 

>  In that case for any dvija (including kshatriya & vaishya) without 
saNyAsa there is no mOksha!! But shankara says there is no adhikAra to 
take saNyAsa for kshatriya & vaishya but note they are not denied the 
mOksha or Atma jnAna.  Ofcourse I do agree for the non-saNyAsins brahma 
jnana is 'dusAdhyaM'but noway it is 'asAdhyaM'...Because we have the 
standing example of janaka who is kshatriya but not a saNyAsi.

so much so, that I remember that Bhagavatpada does mention that karma & 
jn~Ana cannot go hand-in-hand. I submit I'm not qualified enough to quote 
where in prasthAna trayA this occurs; you may agree if you recall.

> yes shankara refutes the jnAna-karma samucchaya vAda. 

So, my understanding is that except in rare cases of dvijA attaining 
brahmajn~Ana, others have to renounce for brahmajn~Ana. 

>  Yes, that would be an appropriate stand and this stand would not 
straightaway snatch away the 'mOksha' opportunity from the non-saNyAsi 
dvija-s :-)) 

Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!

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