[Advaita-l] Meet on Advaita Vedanta

subhanu saxena subhanu at hotmail.com
Thu May 30 14:22:41 CDT 2013

Thanks Bhaskar for your comments, to which  a few brief responses:

Bhaskar:   knowledge can occur to the yOgya adhikAri not only from shruti but also from any texts

Response:  Shankara and Suresvara pretty emphatic on this I am afraid with regards their tradition., where srutivakyAdeva kaivalyam. Pls see BUBV 1.4.857-867 and NS where the results of viveka and anumana yield only indirect knowledge 

Bhaskar :jnAna prApti through svAnubhava...Hence, there are statements like a 
paramArtha jnAni has to do sAdhana to maintain his jnAna (vijnAya prajnAm 
kurveeta etc.) 

Response: key principle: Suresvara is uncompromising in stating that only that jnana which destroys ignorance at that moment once and for all is worthy of the name jnana: sakrid jatam na ched hanti jnanam eva na tad bhavet. I have given in much earlier posts Suresvara's clarification of BUB 1.4.7 on vijnaya prajnam kurvita and the true context of comments re "steadying knowledge" which puts his views on jnana and jnana-nishtha in context. Pls see BUBV 1.4.921-940. You are probably also aware that Ramana Maharshi himself has stated in at least 3 of his talks found in the book of his dialogues that what we ascribe to a jnani's prarabdha from an empirical point of view is from the standpoint of an ignorant bystander. 

Bhaskar: yOga of patanjaLi (ashtAnga yOga) has a significant role to 
play in advaita sAkshAtkAra  ( asamprajnAta samAdhi in patanjali yOga sUtra terminology) is the 
practical experience to realize that ekatva of advaita parabrahman.  

Response: We all know the references in BSB II.15 and BUB that discuss the value of yoga. However as stated above ultimate knowledge in Shankara's tradition is from Sruti alone. Please see BUBV 1.4.848-852 where the necessity of the injunction for chitta-vritti-nirodha is refuted. I will the make the obvious point to all that samadhi states can confirm the deep sleep experience but as long as the seeker keeps viewing themselves as coming in and out of such a state they are still within the clutches of avidya. 

Bhaskar: why should we restrict our studies to the works of ONLY vartikAkArA and his works?

Response: I carefully phrased my sentence to not mean this so I suggest you read it again. I have also studied Vivaranam, Bhamati, Ista Siddhi, Citsukha, Ratnaprabha and more. However to study SHANKARA's tradition an earnest student should kind of ground themselves in a study of the original Bhashyas no? It would be like reading a film review and judging the film based on that without seeing the original film. My comment about Suresvara has never been an ONLY but has always been an AND. It is a pity in my view that we have from his writings over 13000 verses of pure gems on advaita, yet beyond Naishkarmya Siddhi he is hardly read or studied. As we say in German das ist echt Schade.



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