[Advaita-l] vajrOli yOga & shankara bhagavatpAda

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Sat Feb 8 20:47:03 CST 2014

Here is an extract from the maadhaveeya shankara vijaya from the Sringeri
maTha website's pdf:



Ubhaya Bharati too praised Sri Shankara but then added ‘You cannot claim
completesuccess over my husband until I, his better half, have been
defeated by you. Though you are an embodiment of divinity, I have a desire
to debate with you.’
Ubhaya Bharati convinced Sri Shankara to agree to a debate. For seventeen
days a protracteddebate continued. Finding Sri Shankara invincible in Vedic
lore, philosophies and other Sastras,Ubhaya Bharati struck on the idea of
questioning him on Kama Sastra, the science and art oflove between the
sexes, knowing that Sri Shankara was a celibate from boyhood. Sri
Shankaraaccepted the challenge but requested a month’s time to resume the

[In the text of the shankaravijayam are two verses 9.70, 71 which say: When
questioned on the kAma kalA by ubhayabharathi, Shankara thought to Himself:
If I say 'I do not know' she will conclude that I am ignorant of this. If I
give the reply it would be demeaning to my sannyAsa dharma. Thinking thus
Shankara pretended to be ignorant of the kAma kalA, even though
knowledgeable of all sciences, in order to safeguard the niyama of those in
a vow, vrata. He then decided to enter the body of King Amaruka. ]

Sri Shankara and his disciples, all masters of Yogic powers, traveled along
the skies, andlocated a dead body, that of king Amaruka. Sri Shankara
discussed with his disciples about the prospect of entering the King’s
body, study the effects of the forces of love *by remaining a witness*, and
then re-enter his body which would have to be safeguarded by his disciples.

Padmapada gave his full consent but quoted a precedent of a Yogi Matsyendra
as a possible pit fall. Sri Shankara met his arguments in his own superb
manner: ‘In the case of one who has realised even here that the self is
without all contacts, and is the relationless eternally pure spirit, the
commandments and prohibitions of the Sastras have no application. All
fruits are non-existent for one who has realised the world as a mere
appearance. A true knower is free from any sense of good and evil. *So even
if I indulge in the enjoyment of sex love, no evil will result from it.*
*However in order that the world may not be misled by the action of a
Sanyasin like me, I will gain the experience of sex life through the body
of this dead Amaruka, which I am going to enliven by temporarily
identifying myself with that body.’*

Shankara then entered the body of Amaruka by yogic powers, and lived in the
palace effecting able and just administration. He also gathered the
knowledge of love. Meanwhile, the ministers of Amaruka concluding from the
remarkably superior gait of the king apprehended that some noble soul had
entered the King’s body and ordered that all uncared for dead bodies in the
kingdom be burnt. The expiry of the stipulated period was reminded by his
disciples who came as musicians to the palace. Sri Shankara withdrew his
subtle body from the body of the King.

Chapter 19 (page 19 of the pdf)
The Goddess challenged him that it is not enough if a person is omniscient
but he should also be pure. Shankara cannot be said to be pure because of
his stay at the palace of the king Amaruka.

To this challenge, the Acharya answered that from his birth he had done no
sin with this body of his, and what was done with another body will not
affect this body. *Sharada’s voice became silent accepting the explanation*
and the Acharya ascended the Throne of Omniscience, to the ovation of the
people there. The heavenly conch Shells blew, kettledrums sounded like
roaring of the oceans, and flowers rained down in praise of Sri Shankara.

This is the end of the extract I am providing here.

Also, for the particular verse which Shankara replies to Saraswati before
ascending the sarvajna peetha, there is a commentary 'DinDimA' which says:

एवमुक्तः श्रीशंकर उवाच । नेति । अहमपि न संदिहेऽम्बायास्तवा संदेहो नास्तीति
किमु वक्तव्यमित्यतिशयेन संबोधयति । हेऽम्बेति । यत्तु त्वं चाङ्गना इत्यादि
तत्र शृणु - यत्कर्म देहान्तरसंश्रयाद्विहितं तेन कर्मणा अन्योऽयं देहो न
लिप्यते । * लोकशास्रप्रसिद्धं चैतत् *। उपजातिवृत्तम् ।।

a few of my thoughts:

The Vyakhyana uses the words - Loka Prasiddham, Shaastra-Prasiddham - to
justify the answer given by Bhagavatpada.

Obviously in the previous shlokas, Goddess questions the Parishuddhata, and
the vimalatvam of the Acharya based on His experience in the body of King
Amaruka. Nowhere does She allude it to as a Papam. The very question is
posed in relation to the body.

We already have verses like = लिप्यते न स पापेन पद्मपत्रमिवाम्भसा - to
indicate that the Jnani is untouched by Papa or Punya - the Acharya being a
Jnani - Papa/Punya do not arise. This is elaborated in the Digvijaya itself
- in the ninth Sarga - 9.89 to 9.100, Bhagavatpada Himself beautifully
answers the question related to Papa/Punya - and the very same answer He
gives in the 16th sarga is also touched upon (- anyavapuH, 9.100)
[In this verse Shankara says: 'This knowing the kAma kalA practicals
through this (king's) body will not be censurable since I will be following
only the ways of shiShTa-s by resorting to another's body.]

Parakaya Pravesha, a direct result of the debate with Ubhaya Bharati, seems
to have many purposes in the Lila of Bhagavatpada,

8.134 (reason why Bhagavatpada wished to debate with Ubhaya Bharati) - To
get the acceptance of Goddess Saraswati
9.44 - 57 (fulfillment of prophecy) - desire of Ubhaya Bharat - and hence,
the debate is destined to happen (and so too the Parakaya Pravesha)
9.59 - 62 - Why no debate is needed, as per Bhagavatpada, and how
ultimately Ubhaya Bharati reasons that the debate should go on.
9.70, 71 - The exact reason for the Parakaya Pravesha by Bhagavatpada,
eventhough He already knew Kama Shastra

In addition, the parakaya pravesha also demonstrates the state of affairs
in a kingdom ruled by a Brahmajnani and also paves way for the composition
of the Lakshmi Narasimha Karavalamba Stotram.

There is nothing more to be added to this episode by way of clarification.

On Sat, Feb 8, 2014 at 10:57 AM, Sujal Upadhyay <sujal.u at gmail.com> wrote:

> Namaste,
> A little off topic, but still in line with discussion.
> If Adi Shankara was antakarana, then who controlled the antakaran?
> Rules are for bhogi-s and not yogi-s. Realized saints cannot be caged in
> boundaries of sampradAya, country, religion or any rules. to show this,
> they break the rules some time or the other e.g. performing last rites of
> his mother.
> To understand some aspects we will have to dive deep within ourselves. the
> more deep we go inside our mind and the more our consciousness is evolved,
> we understand certain things which look impossible are possible and actions
> which look like wicked (outwardly) are not wicked (inwardly). One can
> understand if one is detached from the body. Astavakra Gita says that Jnani
> can see his own body just like you see another persons body. Jnani sees his
> body like a shadow. While meditating, God can make you experience this.
> It is the attachment that makes a karma kAmya. Karma itself is jaDa. When
> one is detached, what happens? The one who sees karma in akarma and akarma
> in karma ... :)
> Even if you see something not moral like eating non-veg, I would say that
> saints have capacity to rise above negative vibrations
> Environment does not have any impact upon them
> their faith and surrender in the Lord is so strong that after they offer
> food to God, it becomes sattvik.
> SvayampAka (self cooking) with intonations of vedic mantra-s are prescribed
> and we should eat sattvik food. But does this concept apply for a sanyAsin?
> he will beg alms at any door. Now how will one know with what intention
> (bhAva) one has cooked the food? suppose the donor has used eggs or fish
> liver oil in food, which goes unnoticed, what happens?
> Rules that apply to newbies do not apply to evolved saints, then what to
> talk about realized saints and avatars.
> If we remove an a priori that I am Jiva, then many problems is solved. In
> this doubt too that is an a priori --> I am jiva, I transmigrated, ...
> There is one e.g of a saint (mostly Adi Shankara) eating non-veg when
> someone offered to him. So his disciples also ate it. then he drank wine.
> this was followed merrily by his disciples. then a Guru drank molten iron
> and asked his disciples to follow him :)
> Rules are there to rise us above, upto a certain point, then those rules do
> not apply. There are great yogi-s who have controlled natured, made alive
> dead person, became deathless ...
> Just my two cents
> OM
> Sujal
> On Sat, Feb 8, 2014 at 1:26 AM, Sunil Bhattacharjya <
> sunil_bhattacharjya at yahoo.com> wrote:
> > Dear friends,
> >
> > You have missed the most important point. Would the queens have agreed to
> > have intimacy with a Sannyashi. ? Definitely not. Shankara wanted the
> > knowledge of Kama-shastra and the only way he could have it was by
> > parakaya-pravesha. Seeing the king alive the queens thought they were
> > having intimacy with the king only and they behaved naturally and thus
> > Shankara could get the knowledge he looked for. Moreover he had the
> > expertise of the Vajroli mudra and there was no discharge of retah too.
> >
> > Regards
> > Sunil KB
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