[Advaita-l] Ritual Purity, Svadhyaya, and Commute

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at braincells.com
Thu Sep 8 23:53:16 CDT 2016

On Thu, 8 Sep 2016, Shashi via Advaita-l wrote:

> Hello All,
> I have a question about ritual purity
> and Svadhyaya.
> I recently got a translation of
> Sri Madhusudana Sarasvati's
> Gudartha Dipika which I am excited to study.
> However my commute to work is a good two hours in total on the train.
> I thought I could
> study on the train -
> this is when I have the most
> time that until now I typically spend
> the least effectively
> but I doubt whether that's a
> pure enough environment to
> study.
> What are your thoughts
> on Svadhyaya conducted
> outside a sanctified place
> like a puja room or temple.
> and inside a place like a train?
> If it's ok, what does one need
> to do to be ritually pure enough
> to study it there?

adhyayana of Veda (including upanishads) should not be done outside of a 
shuddha environment.  Some allow Silent recollection of already learnt 
material or Gayatri japa.  I used to do japa on the train but then I 
decided that quality is better than quantity so better to do it at home 
even if less in number.  Shastras I still study on the train. 
Translations should be quite alright.  The main consideration is more 
about if one can concentrate with the noise, crowds etc. rather than 
shuddhi.  Still, it is a better use of your time than reading some rubbish 
novel, playing games on the phone etc.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>

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