[Advaita-l] Are actions essentially meaningless?

श्रीमल्ललितालालितः lalitaalaalitah at lalitaalaalitah.com
Fri Dec 28 13:49:15 CST 2012


On Thu, Dec 27, 2012 at 4:03 PM, Rajaram Venkataramani <
rajaramvenk at gmail.com> wrote:

> Madhusudana talks about jnana bhumi. Do these stages map to stable and
> unstable jnana?

Whatever *shrI madhusUdana-sarasvatI* talks about *GYAna-bhUmI*, appears to
be taken from *jIvanmuktiviveka *of *shrIvidyAraNya*.

Anyway, the first three stages are of *sAdhana*, fourth stage is of
asthirapraGYA(unstable but aparoxa GYAna), and others belong to different
degrees of sthirapraGYA(stable GYAna). The fifth, sixth and seventh stages
have increasing degree of stability respectively.

So says *shrIvidyAraNya* in *jIvanmuktiviveka *:

'*सिद्धो न पश्यति*' , '*आचारमाचरति*' - इत्युभयोः परस्परविरोध - इति चेत् ।
*न *। विश्रान्तितारतम्येन व्यवस्थोपपत्तेः ।

This portion is preceded by two shloka-s. One of them from *bhAgavata *says
that GYAnI doesn't see his body. The other of sage *vashiShTha *says that
they do the needed according to the practiced AchAra.

*Q:* How is it possible to not see body and do the needed at the same time
by the same person ?

*A:* There is no contradiction. Both are possible with different degree of
niShThA(self-abidance). When in deep samAdhI, the GYAnI doesn't see the
world. While the one without samAdhI does the needed.

This again shows that GYAna may have different stages of stability and it
will cause difference in nature of GYAnI-s. So, we say that GYAnI may be
engaged in karma according to prArabdha, i.e. we may not see all signs of
GYAnI(which are popularly known) in him. But, when he gains stability of
knowledge by practicing yoga and sadvAsanA-s, he acquires all signs of
GYAnI which are mentioned in gItA, etc.

तदेव तारतम्यमभिप्रेत्य श्रूयते - *आत्मक्रीड आत्मरतिः क्रियावानेष
ब्रह्मविदां वरिष्ठः* - इति ।
अत्र चत्वारः प्रतीयन्ते - *ब्रह्मवित् *प्रथमः , *ब्रह्मविद्वरो
*द्वितीयः , *ब्रह्मविद्वरीयान्
*तृतीयो , *ब्रह्मविद्वरिष्ठः *चतुर्थः । त एते सप्तसु योगभूमिषु चतुर्थीं
योगभूमिमारभ्य क्रमेण भूमिचतुष्टयं प्राप्ता - इत्यवगन्तव्यम् ।

The same difference of degree is shown in shruti: AtmakrIDa, etc.
Here (in AtmakrIDa shruti) we see four types of GYAnI : 1. *brahmavit*, 2. *
brahmavidvara*, 3. *brahmavidvarIyAn*, 4. *brahmavidvariShTha*.

Among seven stages of yoga, these (four type of people) respectively belong
to four stages which start from the 4th stage - is to be known.

वेदान्तवाक्यात् निर्व्विकल्पको ब्रह्मात्मैक्यसाक्षात्कारः *चतुर्थी
भूमिका*फलरूपा सत्त्वापत्तिः ।

Direct knowledge of brahman which comes from vedAnta-vAkya (mahAvAkya-s)
and which doesn't focus on any quality or relation, is considered fourth
stage of yoga by *vashiShTha*. This is the stage of result(GYAna).

सोऽयं चतुर्थीं भूमिकां प्राप्तो योगी ब्रह्मविद् इत्युच्यते ।

The yogI, who has reached this fourth stage is called *brahmavid*.
He is though not a jIvanmukta (a person with stable GYAna).

*Q:* How could you say this ?

*A: *Because the next sentence says that :
पञ्चम्यादयः तिस्रो भूमयो जीवन्मुक्तेरवान्तरभेदाः ।

The three stages, starting from fifth one, are the different stages of

This shows that the person on the fourth stage is not a jIvanmukta. He is a
aparoxa-GYAnI without stability of the same.

This post hence shows that unstable and stable aparoxa-GYAna are mapped to
last four stages among the mentioned seven stages of yoga.

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