[Advaita-l] Shortest Sentence in English is a Mahaa Vaakya?

Venkatraghavan S agnimile at gmail.com
Mon Mar 23 03:29:45 CDT 2015

Dear Sri Jaldhar,

>>sa gurumevAbhigachchhetsamitpANiH

What is the purpose of going to a guru with "samitpANiH"?

If sanYAsA was a necessary condition for a mumukshu sishyA to qualify to
receive brahmavidyA, then presumably the shrotriyam brahmaniShtham guru
would also necessarily be a sanyAsI, and given up agni kAryA as a result.
Of what use is samit to such a guru?

Btw, I'm not disputing the requirement for sAdhana chatushtayam or
sanyAsA's utility in perfecting those qualifications, merely querying why
samitpANih is used here. I don't think the upaniShad would use a term
superfluously in general or merely use it as a proxy to denote respect in
this particular instance.

Did Shvetaketu take up sanyAsA to qualify for the teaching, or for that
matter, UddAlaka aruNi?

On 23 Mar 2015 06:58, "Jaldhar H. Vyas via Advaita-l" <
advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:

> On Tue, 17 Mar 2015, sreenivasa murthy via Advaita-l wrote:
>  Is mahavakya upadesha has to be given only to sanyasins? Why ?
> Something which often gets lost in this discussions is that there are two
> basic kinds of sannyasis.  Those who have taken it up a spiritual
> discipline with a view to preparing to achieve jnana and those who have
> already achieved jnana and therefore are in sannyasa by default because
> there is nothing left in this samsara for them to desire.  Both of them
> will respond to the mahavakya in a different way.
>  Are not the
>> householders entitled for Atmajnana?
> As part of a brahmachari's vedadhyayana he also learns the words of the
> upanishads and as a grhastha it will be part of his svadhyaya but at this
> point it is book-knowledge.  Only by the threefold process of shravana,
> manana, and nidhidhyasana can that be turned into jnana.  By that time he
> will no longer have any use for samsara.
>  The Vedic Rishis were not sanyasins.
>> Yajnavlkya Of Bruhadaranyaka Upanishad was a gRuhasta
> And as Maitreyibrahmana shows, he settled all his vast wealth on his wives
> and left grhasthashrama.
>  and he taught
>> Brahmavidya to Janaka who was a  a King. Ajatashatru who taught
>> Brahmavidya
>> to Balaki was a king.
> Shankaracharya discusses Janaka in the bhashya on Gita 3.20.  Such people
> only engage in "play-acting" so that their subjects who lack proper
> understanding might not unthinkingly imitate the vairagya of a jnani and be
> led astray.
>  Saunaka who was a gruhasta was taught paravidya by Angiras. The very
>> first mantra of Mundaka Upanishad states : "sa brahmavidyAM
>> sarvavidyApratiShThAm jyEShThaputrAya prAha ||"
> The jyeShTaputra mentioned is atharva who is a mind-born son of brahma
> (i.e. prajApati not brahman.) and is not a grhastha.  He taught it to Angih
> who taught SatyavAha BhAradvaja who taught a~Ngirasa.  It was he who taught
> the great householder (mahAshAlin) shaunaka.
>  So  the Upanishadic tradition is that The Guru imparts Brahmavidya to a
>> shishya who approaches Guru with humility.
> What the upanishad says is that shaunaka vidhivadupasanna "approached him
> [a~Ngirasa] according to ceremony or in the proper manner."  What is that
> ceremony or manner (vidhi)?  Why sannyasa of course!  If shaunakas prior
> state had been acceptable, there would be no need for a "proper manner".
> Interestingly Shankaracharya implies that there was no standard vidhi in
> ancient times and it is shaunaka who has formalized it. Be that as it may
> shaunaka despite his wealth and power chose to give it up for the sake of
> moksha.  That is the point of that story.
>  That is the true and genuine
>> tradition. Brahmavidya is not the monopoly of sanyasins . Any man who has
>> that intense desire for mukti is entitled for Atmajnana.
> He is entitled to desire it but the upanishad goes on to say (1.2.12)
> parikShya lokAnkarmachitAnbrAhmaNo nirvedamAyannAstyakR^itaH kR^itena |
> tadviGYAnArthe sa gurumevAbhigachchhetsamitpANiH shrotriyaM brahmaniShTam
> ||
> "Having examined the worlds won by karma, let a brAhmaNa be free of desire
> and think "there is nothing eternal produced by karma" and with that in
> mind approach with samidh in hand, a guru who is learned and immersed in
> brahman."
> By "free of desire" it doesn't mean "free of most desires except an iPhone
> and a fancy car." and when it says to approach a guru who is brahmaniShTa
> "immersed in brahman" it doesn't mean "mostly immersed in brahman except
> when making a powerpoint presentation in the weekly sales meeting."!
> On Tue, 17 Mar 2015, sreenivasa murthy via Advaita-l wrote:
>  When Sri Shankara  wrote commentary to Bhagavadgita , he wrote certain
>> teachings to suit the needs of the persons of that time. The> same may not
>> hold any water in the present times.
> And what time would that be?
>  What was possible during the times of Upanishads is also possible during
>> the present times.
> Exactly.  Sannyasa is just as possible in "present times" as ever :-)
>    The social conditions, living conditions etc. have changed.
> And so?  Vedanta is asking the mumukshu to give up "social conditions" Are
> you implying this can't be done now?
>  It is absolutely necessary that the method of conveying the fundamental
>> metaphysical truths should change  to suit the needs of the present day
>> mumukshus.
> Any "fundamental truth" which is subject to the vagaries of fashion can't
> be very fundamental.  The needs of the mumukshus of today -- to withdraw
> from maya and seek satya -- are no different than they ever were so the
> method of Vedanta is also no different."
>  It is a matter of deep regret that the clinging to redundant
>> ideologies and obsolete sampradayas.
> Ha! You regret it so much you joined a group of people learning about
> Shankaracharya and his "obsolete" sampradaya.  That sampradaya which if it
> had not cling to redundant ideology, today Suleiman Murthy would be
> discussing the fine points of the koran on Islam-l.  If as you say humility
> is the entry-point to Brahmavidya, you have just disqualified yourself.
> --
> Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
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