[Advaita-l] yAvad adhikAram avasthitir AdhikArikANAm - 2

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at braincells.com
Thu May 13 01:33:51 CDT 2010

On Wed, 12 May 2010, V Subrahmanian wrote:

> Would it be correct to say that the Yama of the Kathopanishad is a case of a
> Jnani being given the post, 'adhikAra', of Yama to officiate there till the
> period destined for such a purpose?

Yes this is an excellent example.

> Would it be proper to conclude:
> 1. the AdhikArika PuruSha is not selected at random by Iswara but only
> someone who has the extremely great puNya coupled with Atma jnana.  Any
> Jnani is not fit to hold such positions.  He should be having the requisite
> high-end puNya too. Otherwise, I reason, a Jnani who does not have such a
> puNya as would not take him to a high heaven, swarga, cannot be placed in
> such a position of an AdhikArika purusha.  It is quite reasonable to hold
> that every Jnani need not have earned such extremely high merit, punya,
> through karma.  He could have 'totally' given himself to atma sadhana by not
> neglecting his nitya karma and attained chittashuddhi and owing to
> subsequent shravana, etc. succeeded in attaining aparoksha  jnana.

The problem with this idea is that it smacks of jnanakarmasamucchaya. 
Surely at the dawn of jnana, all jnanis are at the same step regardless of 
their previous (now destroyed) actions.

> 2. The Taittiriya Upanishad says: भीषास्माद् वातः पवते, भीषोदेति सूर्यः,
> भीषास्मादग्निः इन्द्रः च, मृत्युर्धावति पञ्चम इति ।  //Impelled by fear of
> the Supreme Brahman/Iswara do Vayu, Surya, Agni, Indra and Yama engage
> relentlessly in their allotted duties.//
> Since Yama is mentioned here and since the 'Yaavadadhikaari' adhikaraNam
> speaks of 'Aadhikaarika purushas' such as SUrya, linking the Yama of the
> Kathopanishad to this category would not be faulty,  especially considering
> that such a status is conferred upon a Jnani.

But then what does it mean that a jnani is "impelled by fear of Brahman?"

> 4. Would it be proper to say: Such positions are always given to Jnanis with
> great puNya?  Can we say all Indra-s were Jnani's?  There is one adhikaraNam
> in the sutrabhashyam 1.1.28 - 31 where Indra gives the teaching of Atma
> jnanam to someone named 'Pratardana'.

Yet in other places (e.g. Chhandogyopanishad story of Indra and Virochana) 
Indra is atleast initially, the student not the teacher.  And some of 
the puranic stories of Indras exploits do not make him look like a 
jnani at all.

The position of Indra is achieved not by jnana but by performance of 100 
ashvamedhas.  This is how Nahusha was able to usurp Indras throne as told 
in Mahabharata, Bhagavata etc.  I am reminded of the story from the 
Vishnupurana of the line of ants marching under Indras throne.  It was 
revealed to Him that once each of those ants had been Indra but after 
reaching the peak of attainment they had sunk back down to this lowly form 
due to their attachment to karma.  Perhaps some of the Indras were smarter 
than that?

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>

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