[Advaita-l] Vikalpa, Savikalpa, and Nirvikalpa

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Wed Sep 5 14:14:40 CDT 2012

> > for those manda & madhyama adhikAri-s like me, there is a prescription 
> to do archana, upAsana dhyAna etc. is it not prabhuji?? Yes, I do agree 
> alongwith these chitta shdhyarthaM sAdhana, we do involve in sAkshAt 
> sAdhana-s like shravaNAdi, just like any other serious sAdhaka without 
> giving much consideration to our state of mind. 

Dear Bhaskar, 
Precisely therein lies the problem for most of us - not giving much consideration
to our state of mind!
> I am curious to know what you and others who seem have major objections to
> any talk of nirvikalpa samAdhi have in mind when you distinguish the 
> SAstra
> janita paramArtha jnAna of a jnAni from the SAstra janita jnAna that you 
> and I
> have. What distinguishes the jnAna of a jnAnI from what yours and mine? 
> > the difference I could foresee is the difference among an academic 
> scholar, a shrotreeya and the brahmanishTa. An academic scholar is 
> interested only in showing his scholarship, a sincere shrotreeya tries to 
> establish himself in this jnAna and to become brahmanishTa and the 
> brahmanishTa is the epitome of this jnAna. 

SravaNa makes one a Srotriya. What is the route for a Srotriya to become a
> Is there something magical about the jnAnI's antaHkaraNa that can 
> distinguish it from
> your and my antaHkaraNa-s? Is there something mysterious about the antaH-
> karaNa of the jnAnI that allows SAstra to generate paramArtha jnAna in it 
> while
> failing to generate paramArtha jnAna in yours and mine? 
> > jnAni's jnAna is anubhavAtmaka jnAna ( and this anubhava cannot be said 
> that it has to be invariably obtained only in supernatural state like 
> samAdhi) and my jnAna is kevala vrutti rUpa jnAna. 
> > prabhuji, as you know, brahma jnAna is not something mystical to say it 
> is avasthAteeta or vyavahArAteeta jnAna. 

Again, we come to the crux of the issue. What is this anubhava that is brahma jnAna?
In what avasthA does the anubhava take place? And why does bhagavatpAda call such
anubhava the avasAna of jnAna? Clearly, it is not just the experience of jAgrat, svapna
and sushupti (or rather, the memory of sushupti) nor merely an aggregate of anubhava-s
in these states. Surely, given that there is a prior state of ajnAna for one who finds it
necessary to embark upon a quest for jnAna, the anubhava has to have happened at 
some point of time in his or her life, right? What state would one call that? Why not
make use of the ready made word attested in the brahmasUtra, namely samAdhi?
You can drop the adjective nirvikalpa, if that makes you too uncomfortable!
> > I dont see any problem in this stand prabhuji. (perhaps due to my 
> manda buddhi I am not seeing any logical inconsistency here), Yes, I am 
> ajnAni, who is still identifying myself with BMI, naturally, I need a 
> upadesha from the guru, who I believe is paramArtha jnAni through his BMI 
> I expect this upadesha from him. But that does not mean jnAni's 
> association with BMI is everlasted till his physical death. shankara 
> clarifies this by saying dehavAniva lakshyate, but he is brahman only and 
> ashareeri and sashareeratvaM is kevala avidyAkalpita. My question/doubt 
> is very simple prabhuji, whether jnAnAnubhava what we are talking here is 
> can happen only in the 'absence' of antaHkaraNa like in samAdhi or bAdhita 
> jnAna of tAdAtmya buddhi. 
I am not talking of physical death of a person acclaimed as a jnAnI. I am not talking
of an ajnAnI's need for upadeSa from a guru who is a jnAnI. Rather, I am talking of
the same person who used to be an ajnAnI in the past and is now a jnAnI. What 
happens to/in the antaHkaraNa of that person at the moment jnAna arises and/or
during the rest of the natural life for that person who is a brahmanishTha?

As for your question about whether jnAnAnubhava can happen only in samAdhi or
not, I have two answers. One, it is not for an ajnAnI to speculate about when and
how jnAnAnubhava happens, so I can only cite the testimony of SAstra and upadeSa.
Two, where the jnAnI stands in the realization neha nAnAsti kiMcana, not merely as
a paroksha piece of knowledge but as one's own realization, such jnAnAnubhava IS
itself samAdhi. That it cannot be otherwise is a foregone conclusion. 
What is meant by bAdhita jnAna of tAdAtmya buddhi? I know very well that the sun
does not "rise in the east" but I still can go about my life habitually using that phrase.
This "rising-in-the-east"-ness of the sun is bAdhita jnAna too. Is brahmajnAna also
only like that? Is that what is intended by the word anubhava for a jnAnI?

> > IMHO, those who are seeing the trouble in mandatory requirement of 
> nirvikalpa samAdhi anubhava arguing the stand that demands the samAdhi 
> anubhava for about 2-3 hours in a mind inert mysterious state. If this 

I wonder who are those people who say that this is mandatory. If you can cite some
source, that would greatly help. I rather think you are mistakenly assigning a demand
value and taking as mandatory what is only a descriptive narrative of a 2-3 hour (or
weeks on end) experience of nirvikalpa samAdhi that happened to one or the other
guru hailed as a jnAnI.
Best regards,

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list