[Advaita-l] FW: Pitupaksha questions

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Thu Sep 29 14:13:36 CDT 2011

> Date: Wed, 28 Sep 2011 03:47:36 -0700
> From: srikanta.narayanaswami at yahoo.com
> To: advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
> Subject: [Advaita-l] Pitupaksha questions-Reply.
> Sri Vidyashankar,First of all,Nachiketas didnot go to Naraka where Yamadharmaraja rules because his father didnot give enough gfts to the priests.

Please read the very beginning of the kaThopanishat. Naciketas first questions his father about
the quality of ritual gifts being given (old, non-productive cattle). Only then does he go to Yama. 
> 2)You are wrongly quoting me in the choice of Purohits.You have just picked up sentences without seeing the context.
No, I am absolutely going by what you wrote in your earlier mails. Again, your experience with
the priests at your mother's funeral rites is, I think, unfortunate. I, on the other hand, have seen
nothing but very high quality of SraddhA, expertise and behavior on the part of purohita-s and
dAna recipients whom I have come across. In any case, lack of dedication, expertise etc. or an
abundance of these qualities on the part of one or even a hundred or thousand purohita-s are
quite independent of the philosophical positions involved here. I object to (a) your denigration
of all mImAMsaka-s as "parasites" or commercially minded, and (b) your blanket statements
regarding karmA and jnAna that do not properly take adhikAra into account.
> 4)while it is the duty of the advaita list is to highlight Advaita siddhanta,I find there is more emphasis on only karma
>and the rituals,which will not take us further.So,there should be more space for discussing the topics on Jnana.
That again is a very different problem of perception. While I wouldn't say that every list member
here is focused only on jnAna, I think the list discussions by and large serve the purpose for the
existence of this list. In any case, if you have concerns about this, the answer lies not in the kind
of attack that you have done on vaidika karmA, its performance and its ritual specialists. What
most of your respondents have found unacceptable in your posts is your rejection of vaidika karmA
even within its own proper sphere of applicability. I think you will find that no one finds any fault
with the statement that moksha is not a result of any karmA. However, dharma is a separate
purushArtha from moksha and that is what you don't seem to account for.

> 5)My discussions on SriShankaraBhagawath pada and the importance of studying and assimilating the books by Sri shankara Bhagawathpada stems from the reply of some of the list subscribers who stick to their point of view irrespective of me pointing out on the contrary.These list members seem to stick to their views even if it is brounght to their notice the Sri Shankara's upadesha on these relevant points.They seem to stick to only the Karma siddhantha which is not any where found in the Bhagawath pada's bhashyas.
If you read carefully through the most recent responses to you from, say Sri Praveen Bhat or 
Sri Krunal Makwana, to name just a couple of these list members, it is very clear that they do
NOT stick to karma siddhAnta, but they do not think that you correctly represent Sri Sankara
bhagavatpAda's views on the matter either. And it so happens that a number of others see it
the same way, but then, the opportunity to exchange views is what this list's purpose is. I don't
think any of us here should have any illusions that others always have to change their views
based on what we write. But we should always be open to the notion that we are perhaps
wrong about some things and be open to the possibility of being corrected. If it happens, well
and good, but such an event should be based on the inherent strengths of the arguments and
views presented, not on who is saying something and in what manner. 

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