[Advaita-l] About the term in 'Ishwara' in Advaita - a brief note

Rajaram Venkataramani rajaramvenk at gmail.com
Tue Apr 10 15:17:04 CDT 2012

On Tuesday, April 10, 2012, V Subrahmanian wrote:

>   - Even though Shankara uses the term 'paramAtmaa', 'paraH puruShaH' to
>   refer to para Brahman (as distinct from the Hiranyagarbha) still this
> para
>   Brahman is NOT the Ishwara (saguna/savishesha/mAyopAdhika Brahman that is
>   described in the sixth mantra of the Mandukyopanishat and subsequently
>   negated in the seventh mantra).

  - Shankara gives the reasoning, quoting another shruti: पुरुषान्न परं
>   किञ्चित् सा काष्ठा सा परा गतिः of the Kathopanishat where the
>   ParamapuruSha, paramAtmA, Para, nirguNa, nirvishesha  Brahman  is taught
> as
>   the Ultimate beyond whom there is nothing to be counted as higher. And
>   which is the Ultimate Goal.
>   - Shankara holds that this 'meditation' is on the above said para
>   Brahman (not Ishwara) that should lead to self-realization, सम्यग्दर्शनम्
>   and moksha.

Please cross refer 8.22, especially from  ya: bhaktya ... gatadhi. The
Purusha, the cause in who every thing contained, is reached through one
pointed devotion to the Self! As opposed to rejecting Ishwara as anatma
Sankara says Ishwara is the goal reached by devotion to the Self. It is not
the dualistic Ishwara. The goal that you reach is the supreme state of
Vishnu (8.21) or "Ishwaram Sthanam" (8.28). Sankara keeps the context of
who is Vishnu from the beginning of the chapter.

>   - Thus a careful study of the BSB 1.3.13 along with the BGB 8th chapter
>   verses does not prove to one that the sOpAdhika/savishesha Ishwara is the
>   same as the Para Brahman which is beyond even this.

  - It is also pertinent to note that in the Mandukyopanishad bhashya for
>   the mantra 12 what Shankara says: //The Knower of Brahman who has
> realized
>   the highest Truth hs entered into the Self b burning awa the third state
> of
>   latency and hence he is not born again, since Turiya has no latency of
>   creation.

The goal that is reached is the supreme state of Vishnu, Ishwara. If it is
not Turiya, then we should not even aim for it. First, He should do this
meditation on the Immutable and get liberated.

You seemed concerned that the term Parameshwara is missing in this
adhikaranam :) You can satisfy yourself in the next adhikaranam where
Parameshwara is equated to Paramatma.


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