[Advaita-l] Supreme Brahman - the Ruler in Advaita?

Swami Sarvabhutananda swami.sarvabhutananda at gmail.com
Wed Apr 10 03:41:25 CDT 2013

MithyA is accounted for Sadasat cognizable creation and Brahma as absolute
On Apr 10, 2013 3:40 AM, "Rajaram Venkataramani" <rajaramvenk at gmail.com>

> Dear Friends,
> We had discussions on whether Ishwara is Turiya based on Gaudapada  as well
> as BhG 8th and 15th chapters.  When I first read Sankara bhashya, it was
> clear to me that he did not differentiate between Brahman and Ishwara. It
> became much clearer when I read Madhsudana Saraswati. However, the popular
> opinion on this forum seems to be that Ishwara is mithya (a-brahman) in
> Advaita. We have to examine and understand truths rather than blindly go
> with an opinion based on its popularity alone because we have a duty to
> understand what Gaudapada, Sankara, Madhusudana etc. had to say. For
> example, one of the famous swamijis quoted often on this forum talks about
> gopis as bhaktas - not atma jnanis - who will attain brahma-loka. I
> discussed offline with a scholar and pointed out that such an opinion
> contradicts what Madhusudana Saraswati says in Gudarthadipika 18.66 and
> 7.17. Even great scholars can make mistakes and sometimes quite fundamental
> ones especially when they get in to simplifiied pedagogy.
> In BhG 15th Chapter, Sankara explicitly talks about nirupadhika brahman as
> Ishanashila or Narayana. The following should make it very clear.
> Madhsudana says in BhG 15.7, "Of what nature is He? He is immutable, free
> from all kinds of transformations; He is the isvarah, the ruler of all,
> Narayana. He who is the supreme Purusha is called the transcendental Self.
> This follows from the Shruti, 'He is the Supreme Purusha (Ch. 8.12.3)"  He
> continues in BhG 15.8, "He is refered to in the Vedas "He is the Supreme
> Person (Ch.8.12.3)" and in poetical works "Hari alone is known as the
> Supreme Person".  The glory of Narayana, the supreme Purusha, whose body is
> made of existence -  knowledge - bliss, who out of compassion, acting like
> a human being taught to Partha supreme realities and His own Godhood,
> indeed baffles comparison." .... In BhG 15.19 "O you who are conversant
> with good works, worship again and again the Light which is by nature
> Consciousness and Bliss, which has the colour of a rain cloud, which is the
> quintessence of the Vedic utterances, which is the necklace of the women of
> Vraja, which is the other shore of the sea of the world to the wise and
> which repeatedly incarnates to remove the burden on earth!". ... In Bh
> 15.20, "I do not know any reality othern Krsna whose hands are adorned with
> a flute, whose lustre is like that of a new rain cloud, who wears a yellow
> cloth, whose lips are reddish like the bimba fruit, whose face is beautiful
> likee the full moon and whose eyes are likee lotusses. The mind that is
> ever engaged in the state of constant bliss removes all mental
> modifications and by eradicating the sorrows consequent on repeated births
> and deaths it attains at once reality transcending cause and effect. I am
> that supreme auspicious one in whome get identified the followers of Siva,
> Surya, Ganesa, Vishnu and Sakti. Those fools go to hell who cannot tolerate
> the wonderful glory of Krishna which is ascertained through valid means of
> knowledge as well"
> In BhG 8.3, Madhusudana says "By the word brahman here is meant the
> unconditioned brahman alone, not the conditioned. .... 'Under the mighty
> rule of this Immutable, O Gargi, the sun and moon are held in position (Br.
> Up. 3.8.9)'. .. 'There is no other witness but This'. ... 'By this
> Immutable, O Gargi, is the akasa pervaded'. *That which is free from all
> limiting adjuncts, which is the ruler of eveything, the support of the
> entire phenomenal world up to the unmanifested akasa, which is the knower
> in the aggregate of body and organs and is the absolute Consciousness is
> what is meant by brahman here. ... the characteristics or ruling over and
> supporting the entire gamut of insentient things becomes justifiable with
> regard to That alone" *
> **
> Clearly, there is no room for any difference between Brahman and Ishwara.
> This Ishwara or akshara is different from akshara Om or pranava as
> clarified by Madhusuda. However, this akshara is the same as Lord Vishnu.
> In BhG 8.4 Madhsudana says, "Adhiyajnah ... is the God called Vishnu, who
> identifies Himself with all sacrifices as it is statef in the Sruti,
> 'Sacrifice is indeed Vishnu' (Tai Sam. 1.7.4). And that Vishnu, who exists
> in sacrifice is aham eva who am Vasudeva, not any one other than Myself.
> ... The adhiyajna has ot be understood as absolutely non-different from the
> supreme Brahman".
> Best Regards
> Rajaram Venkataramani
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