[Advaita-l] GYAnimAtra and the sthitapraGYa (was Re: FW: Avidya, Jnanis and SSS' views)

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Tue May 18 10:33:01 CDT 2010

--- On Mon, 5/17/10, V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com> wrote:

> Namaste Karthik,
> You have brought a very important question pertaining to
> the JMV to the
> fore.  It needs clarification so that no confusion
> remains in an aspirant.
> Let me re-present the portion from the JMV
> (vAsnAkshayaprakaraNam) that was
> already presented:
> //इदानीन्तनास्तु
> प्रायेण अकृतोपास्तय
> एव औत्सुक्यमात्रात्
> सहसा विद्यायां
> प्रवर्तन्ते ।
> वासनाक्ष्य-मनोनाशौ च
> तात्कालिकौ
> सम्पादयन्ति । तावता
> श्रवणमनननिध्यासनानि
> निष्पाद्यन्ते । 
> तैश्च
> दृढाभ्यस्तैरज्ञान-संशय-विपर्ययनिरासात्
> *तत्त्वज्ञानं
> सम्यगुदेति *। 
> उदितस्य
> ज्ञानस्य
> बाधकप्रमाणाभावात्
> निवृत्ताया
> अविद्यायाः
> पुनरुत्पत्तिकारणाभाच्च
> *नास्ति
> तस्य शैथिल्यम्* । 
> *वासनाक्ष्य-मनोनाशौ तु
> दृढाभ्यासाभावात्
> भोगप्रदेन
> प्रारब्धेन तदा तदा
> बाध्यमानत्वाच्च
> सवातप्रदेशदीपवत्सहसा
> निवर्तते *।
> Nowadays men rush in quest of Jnana,  out of sheer
> curiosity, in most cases
> even without going through the preliminary stage of
> upasana.  *They even
> reach the stage of obliteration of vasana and the
> dissolution of the mind
> for the time being*, and in consequence, study,
> contemplation and
> assimilation (of the VEdanta) are also fully accomplished
> by repeated
> application to these three; ignorance, doubt and false
> perception are
> demolished; *and real Jnana is achieved*.  In the
> absence of a more powerful
> means to counteract it and of any cause which can
> resuscitate the ignorance
> dispelled by it, *the resultatnt Jnana does not
> fade.*  *But then the
> obliteration of vasana and the dissolution of the mind are
> easily
> extinguished*, like a lamp exposed to the breeze, for want
> of steady
> application and in consequence of being influenced, from
> time to time, by
> the fruit-bearing previous karma.//
> You can clearly see here that the three obstacles : ajnAna,
> samshaya and
> viparyaya, have been 'demolished' and avidya has been
> dispelled and the
> resultant Jnana does not fade. 

There is only one difference between the akR^itopAsti mentioned above and the case of rAghava/shuka mentioned in the fourth chapter of the JMV - there is no "cause" for the utpatti of saMshaya and viparyaya in the former's case. I will agree with you on this much.

However, I still disagree that this particular akR^itopAsti has already attained mokSha in the strict sense of the word! I've already provided several reasons, here are a few of the important reasons again, none of which you have answered so far:

1) There are several verses in the JMV that categorically deny mokSha to one who has not yet undergone vAsanAkShaya, as for instance:

  tatra vAsanAkshayaprakAram Aha vasishhThaH -
  bandho hi vAsanAbandho mokShaH syAd vAsanAkshayaH .
  vAsanAstvaM parityajya mokShArthitvam api tyaja .. [LYV 18.20]

  "About the destruction of vAsanAs, VasishhTha said thus -
  'Bondage is truly the bonds of vAsanAs and mokSha is getting rid
  of them. Giving up all vAsanAs, give up even the desire for mokSha.'"

It is clear from the above that mokSha = vAsanAkShaya.

2) It is not the case, as you seem to maintain, that Videhamukti-alternative (one is not free of the suffering of the present body, but only those of future bodies) is used as the true meaning of Videhamukti throughout the JMV. There are many instances where Videhamukti refers only to Videhamukti-original (one is free after the dissolution of the present body), as for example (page 273, end of chapter 3):

  arUpastu manonAsho yo mayokto raghudvaha .
  videhamuktAvevAsau vidyate nishhkalAtmakaH .. [LYV 28.26]

  "O descendent of the Raghus, the dissolution of the mind
  without form, which has been described by me, happens in the case
  of the Videhamukti only wherein remains no trace of the mind".

It is impossible to maintain that the above reference to Videhamukti is to Videha-mukti-alternative, due to the reference to manonAsha. In fact, the whole set of verses leading upto this one also refer only to Videha-mukti-original, as the context obviously speaks of manonAsha throughout these verses. Moreover, this occurs towards the end of Chapter 3, after the discussions on YAGYavalkya etc. are over, so it is almost as if VidyAraNya has "once again reverted to his non-cherished view of Videha-mukti-original as in the first chapter"!

Now, the way I would interpret VidyAraNya speaking of his "cherished view" of Videha-mukti-alternative is this:

VidyAraNya has defined Videha-mukti as Videha-mukti-original in the first chapter and in the later chapters also refers to it the same way. This is the "real" meaning of the term "Videhamukti" for most advaitins, and it is so for VidyAraNya as well. The reason he defines "Videha-mukti-alternative" is only because he is in effect telling the opponent, "Please let us not quibble on the meaning of this special usage of the term 'Videha-mukti(-alternative)', as I personally like this tangential meaning of the term". That's all!

3) VidyAraNya writes (page 87, ibid):

  mumukShoH purushhasya jIvanmuktirvidehamuktishcheti
  prayojanadvayam . ata eva "vimuktashcha vimuchyata"
  [KU 2.2.1] iti shrUyate .

  "The person who is seeking liberation (mumukShu) needs both
  jIvanmukti and Videhamukti. For this the shruti has it thus:
  'First liberated from ignorance while still alive, is again
  freed on disembodiment." [KU 2.2.1]

The above reference to a mumukShu being keen on both jIvanmukti and Videhamukti cannot be interpreted with Videhamukti-alternative ALONE.

4) The term "mukta" without qualifications occurs more than once in the LYV, as quoted by VidyAraNya (page 176, ibid):

  hRRidayAt samparityajya sarvameva mahAmatiH .
  yastishhThati gatavyagraH sa muktaH parameshvaraH .. [LYV 18.26]
  samAdhim atha karmANi mA karotu karotu vA .
  hRRidayenAstasarvAsho mukta evottamAshayaH .. [LYV 18.27]
  naishhkarmyeNa na tasyArthastasyAtho.asti na karmabhiH .
  na samAdhAnajapyAbhyAM yasya nirvAsanaM manaH .. [LYV 18.28]

  "He, the man of vase intelligence, who does away with all (desires)
  from the mind and remains devoid of agitation, is liberated (sa muktaH),
  and he is the supreme lord."
  "He, the great soul, whose heart is free from all expectations, and who
  is noble-minded, is indeed free whether he performs or performs not
  concentration (samAdhi) or rituals."
  "He, whose mind is desireless (nirvAsanaM manaH), has no concern
  with the performance of or refraining from acts, nor is he in need
  of concentration (samAdhi) or muttered prayer (japa)."

In the set of above verses taken together, note that the person who is referred to as "muktaH" is one with "nirvAsanam manaH" - one with no vAsanAs.


> Best regards,
> subrahmanian.v



More information about the Advaita-l mailing list