[Advaita-l] 'Bhakti' in SrIvidyopAsanA

Venkata sriram P venkatasriramp at yahoo.in
Mon Mar 5 07:17:44 CST 2012

Namaste Subbuji,
the Sringeri background would never ever make this most derisive caricature which I am
extremely sorry to quote here
These are the results of certain pre-conceived notions about our beloved Sankara Bhagavatpada. 
The problem is that Sankara touched upon several subjects and each of them seems 
contrary to each other in philosphy.  For instance, if we study prasthAna-traya bhAShya,
we get a notion about sankara that he was a shuddha advaitin who would never compromise with pariNAmavAda in general and srividya tantra in particular unless we peep into Saundaryalahari. 
And many are the scholars who even denied the authorship of Saundaryalahari to Sankara considering the writing style of Sankara in upaniSad bhAshyAs. So, the hardcore vedantins took these mutually exclusive siddhAntAs in Sankara with a pinch of salt.  Similarly, the shaktas also denied the authorship of Saundaryalahari to Sankara.  
So, benefit of doubt was ascribed to Sankara so as to how he could support pariNAmavAda & vivartavAda equally.  
When i posed this question to Sannidhanam of Sringeri, His Holiness Bharati Tirtha 
said that that was the *beauty and genius* of Sankara and hence He became "Jagatguru*.
Sankara accepts the pariNAmava-vAda is only for the sake of saguNa upAsana (pariNAmaprakriyANAM saguNESu upAsanESu......as per Sankara in BSB).  
I have personally interacted the descendants of Shri Bhaskararaya Makhin who derive 
the bhAskararAyA's guru parampara from Sankara Bhagavatpada only.  Apart from 4
monastic disciples of Sankara, there were 9 householder disciples to sankara who
were asked to propagate Srividya Upasana.  They were:
1. Sundara
2. Vishnu Sarma
3. Lakshmana
4. Mallikarjuna
5. Trivikrama
6. Sridhara
7. Kapardi
8. Kesava
9. Damodara
Among them, Shri Bhaskararaya Makhin belonged to the srividya sampradaya of Vishnu
Sarma.  Among the sishya parampara of Vishnu Sarma, there was a great yogin 
by name AnandAnadanatha.  He initiated padukAnta diksha to Shiva Datta shukla whose
diksha name was Prakasanandanatha.  Prakasanandanatha initiated Bhaskararaya into
Srividya and conferred the name bhAsurAnandanAtha. 
So, the srividya lineage of Bhaskararaya can be traced back to Sankara Bhagavatpada
and it can be concluded without ambiguity that Srividya IS THE ATMA VIDYA.  
Devi Gita extolls the greatness of "TAT TVAM ASI" mahAvAkya in Devi Bhagavata Purana.
Also, as per the discussions with Shri Goda Venkateshwara Shastrigal, his opinion was that Srividya is the *essence of dahara vidya* and sriyantra is also called dahara yantra. 
This same dahara yantra alongwith siva-shakti sammELana yantra is to be found in Chidambara Kshetra in the form of "Chidambara Rahasya".  
So, the chitkaLa that shines in daharAkAsa is the sriyantra that has to be contemplated /
meditated upon.


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