[Advaita-l] The Human aspect of Jnanis - 5 (Concluded)

Mahesh Ursekar mahesh.ursekar at gmail.com
Thu Jul 22 02:15:46 CDT 2010

Pranams Sri Subrahmanian:

Thanks for your enlightening post. The state of a self-realized soul is
indeed hard to explain and you have nicely brought out the many problems
associated with it.

I would like to add one more problem, which, I think, has not been covered
by your posts. When a person such as this writes a spiritual treatise - may
it be the Brahma Sutra or the Vivekachoodamani - who is the author of it? Is
it the BMI of the individual? If yes, it will not be Shruti (or revealed
text i.e. work without authorship). If not, then how does one explain why
Sankaracharya writes a Vivekachoodamani which has a different import as
compared to a work by Sri Madhavacharya? This can be also stated differently
as: if both Sankaracharya & Madhavacharya were self-realized souls, why do
they have different views on reality?

Thanks, Mahesh

On Mon, Jul 19, 2010 at 11:05 PM, V Subrahmanian
<v.subrahmanian at gmail.com>wrote:

> Namaste.
> In the earlier parts we had seen instances of manifestation of emotions
> such
> as attachment, anger and desire in  a Jnani.  Let us remind ourselves of
> what a 'Jnani' is:
> A samsari jiva is what he is because of ignorance, avidya.  Avidya is
> always
> a viShaya, object, to the viShayi, the subject Consciousness.  The jiva is
> in truth this Consciousness.  It is because this realization is not there
> in
> the jiva that he sees himself as a samsari.  When owing to scriptural
> enquiry he realizes his true nature, he is freed of this jivatva,
> samsaaritva.  However, this knowledge does not destroy the body-mind
> apparatus and the world of matter.  The body-mind apparatus that lives on
> along with the Knowledge of the Truth is what is termed a Jnani.  It is
> Jnanam, Knowledge, plus the  body-mind  that is called a Jnani.
> The word 'jivan-muktaH' means 'the one who is released from the bonds of
> samsara even while alive'.  The word 'jeev' has the meaning of
> 'prANadhaaraNe'.  That is, he who is endowed with prANa, the mark of life,
> is a jiva.  So, a jivanmukta is one with prANa.  PrANa is the one that
> enables the mind/intellect/ego to function as well as the sense and motor
> organs to operate.  This shows that the jivanmukta is very much in the
> range
> of interacting with the material world.
> With that definition of a Jnani, it becomes easy for us to appreciate that
> while Jnanam does not and cannot have any manifestation of any emotion, the
> Jnani who is the peculiar combination of Jnanam and the body-mind does
> indeed and by default, manifest emotions as it is this combination that is
> amidst the material world and its machinations.
> All the sthitaprajna lakshanas detailed in the scripture are to be seen in
> this light:  When for example, the verse :
> duHkeShu anudvignamanaaH sukheShu vigataspRhahaH
> veetaraaga-bhaya-krodhaH sthitadheer muniruchyate  2.56
> of the Bhagavadgita is encountered, we quickly see these points:
>   1. The word 'manaaH' prominently displayed in the verse teaches that the
>   Jnani, the sthitaprajna, is endowed with a mind.
>   2. He is not identifying himself with the mind, yet the mind itself is
>   not absemt.
>   3. It is this mind, the verse says, is not affected by
>   sorrow/grief/misery when difficulty arises and is not affected by elation
>   when favourable things happen.  [The Acharya's bhashya:  duHkhapraaptau
> mano
>   yasya na prakShubhitam = when misery is encountered, the mind is not
>   overwhelmed.  ]
>   4. That mind is not subject  to fear, attachment and anger.
>   5. All this means, these emotions arise, or their possibility of arising
>   is there
>   6. The mind senses them
>   7. But does not give them the power to overwhelm the person.
>   8. The mechanism involved in this exercise is:  The realization 'I am not
>   the mind/body/organs but am the unchanging Atman, the Consciousness
>   principle that enables the perception of these and the emotions. Hence I
> am
>   not affected by these vikara-s.  What is, however, affected or might be
>   affected, is the mind and I am not the mind.'
>   9.  It is such viveka that enables the 'person' to remain as the witness
>   and detach himself from the witnessed.
>   10. It is such a person that gets the appendage: sthitadheeH.  It is not
>   that there are no emotions or reactions and therefore he is a
> sthitadheeH.
>   This can happen in deep sleep and even for a dead body.  It is only in
> the
>   wake of emotions arising, their potential being very well there, their
>   causative stimulants being very much present, that the scope for
>   sthitaprajnatvam is appreciated.
>   11. For the jivanmukta, sthitaprajna, prArabdha is very much there but
>   only the effect of prarabhda, the affectation, is not there.  What does
> this
>   mean?  It means that the 'person' there knows that prArabdha can and does
>   affect the body-mind apparatus but the Atman is totally detached from
> this.
>   It is only the Atman is not affected by prarabdha.  It is  this
> phenomenon
>   that is popularly expressed as: the 'jivanmukta is not affected by
>   prarabdha.'  This expression is often misunderstood to mean: there is no
>   prarabdha at all for the jivanmukta / some Advaitic texts deny prarabdha
> for
>   a Jnani, and so on.  The correct understanding is:  When a Jnani is
>   admitted, there is no way prarabdha can be wished away.  The two 'Jnani
> and
>   prarabdha' go together.  It is only the two 'Atman /Jnanam and prarabdha'
>   that are antithetical and therefore do not go together.
>   12. The 'dheeH', buddhi, intellect, is 'sthitaH', unmoved, only when the
>   possibility of movement is there and despite that it is not moved.
>   13. This means:  The 'person' does not give room for the feeling: 'I am
>   affected'.  It is this disidentification from the mind/body and
>   identification with the Atman alone constitutes 'sthairya of prajna'.
>  This
>   is what is meant by 'the Jnani is not moved / affected'.  It is only the
>   Jnanam / Atman that is not affected.  The mind does sense the
> affectation.
>   14. How intensely the mind entertains the affectation, however, depends
>   on the samskara, the paripakva, the training the mind has.  Mind 'A'
> might
>   quickly expel the affectation and mind 'B' might not be able to do so
> that
>   quickly.  This is what is the basis of differentiating, theoretically,
> one
>   Jnani from another, capacity-wise.
>   15. It is not the Jnanam that is different between them; it is
>   essentially the mind that is different between them.
>   16. It is like jnani, jivanmukta A living for 80 years and Jnani B living
>   for only 30 years.  Jnanam in both is the same; only the body is
> different.
>      Thus, the above verse of the Gita is to be understood in the manner
> shown.  When seen thus, we are able to appreciate the fact that there are
> emotions that arise, in whatever intensity, being vasana-prarabdha
> dependent, and become known to the 'person'.  This is inevitable as long as
> the person is awake and in the midst of vyavahara.  There might be some
> repitiion of ideas in the above list; yet they are  not out of place.
> Reverting to the emotions, here are some more instances of the Jnani having
> the capacity to be a father/family man (refer post : // The Human aspect of
> Jnanis -4 // )  -
>   1. Sage Yajnavalkya was a Jnani who is a preeminent Acharya of
>   Brahmavidya in the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad.  His two wives were:
>   Kaatyaayini and Maitreyi.
>   2. King Janaka is a famed householder
>   3. Varuna was the Jnani-father of Bhrugu who was instructed into
>   Brahmavidya in the Taittiriya Upanishad
>   4. Sage Uddalaka was the Jnani-father of Shvetaketu in the Chandogya
>   Upanishad
>   5. Some Upanishads declare the fruit of Brahmavidya as (also) -  'In his
>   , this Jnani's, lineage, kula, there will be no one who is not a Jnani'
>   [nAsya kule abrahmavit bhavati']  This shows that the Jnani will  be /
> can
>   be a father.
>   6. Shankaracharya treats of these personalities of the Upanishads as
>   'real' and not imaginary.  There is ample evidence for this treatment by
> the
>   Acharya in His bhashya-s.
> (Concluded)
> Om Tat Sat
> subbu
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