[Advaita-l] How can prANa be Brahman?

H S Chandramouli hschandramouli at gmail.com
Fri Sep 9 11:37:04 CDT 2016

Namaste Sri Venkatraghavan Ji.

Reg  << Shankaracharya does not say that the experience of sorrow or
delusion by the mind itself is the cause of samsAra, but that the
transposition (adhyAsa) of that experienced sorrow / delusion on to oneself
by saying - I am sad, I am deluded etc - is the cause of samsAra. Therefore
the eradication of mental sorrow or the begetting of mental happiness are
not the aims of Vedanta - it is freedom from the notion that "I" am unhappy
or deluded, and learning to say the mind is unhappy / deluded when such
conditions arise in the mind. >>,

Not exactly. The solution is twofold. One is to attain jnana. Remember this
itself ensures ‘liberation from embodiment” and is considered “moksha”
irrespective of  “learning to say the mind is unhappy / deluded when such
conditions arise in the mind”. Reason being that on fall of the current
embodiment at the time of death unhappiness/delusion is no longer
experienced subsequently by the jiva. Infact this is the understanding one
gets by studies of texts or listening to any of the teachers these days.
The conclusion always reached is that after achieving jnana, “lived happily
everafterwards”. Period.

The second objective of “moksha” namely “freedom from bondage” which
actually means “living happily everafterwards in this body itself”, and any
further sAdhanAs needed to achieve the same are invariably not stressed at
all. You can correct if I am wrong. It may also be pertinent to recall
again here that this is not essential for “liberation from embodiment”.
That is assured even without these additional sAdhanAs.

Now reg  << That being the case, after the rise of jnAna, if due to
prArabdha, the mind of the jnAni experiences sorrow or delusion, he does
not transpose that sorrow or delusion on to himself.>>.

Well not exactly again. Swami Vidyaranya says that this is consistently
true only for a brief time after jnana. Subsequently it is intermittent. I
have referred to it in  my earlier post on this issue. I will avoid
repeating it again with your permission.

Reg  << On the other hand, the role that vAsanAkshaya / manonAsha plays is
in training the mind to limit the negative reaction to external
circumstances, which reaction manifests itself as sorrow / delusion>>,

manonAsha essentially refers to chitta ekAgratha meaning avoiding
manovritti modifications in accordance with external objects and  vAsanAkshaya
essentially refers to  avoiding manovritti modifications due to internal
latent mental impressions. Thus  vAsanAkshaya / manonAsha together help
avoid manovritti modifications for any reason whatsoever, internal or
external, thereby enabling the mind to be concentrated constantly without
interruption on Brahman alone. This leads to "freedom from bondage"
enabling the sAdhaka to "live happily everafterwards in this body itself".
This is a very brief explanation and I have broughtout only the main point
according to my understanding. Lot of finer issues are involved. For
detailed analysis I am afraid we need to refer to the text itself.

I hope I have covered all the points and this is of  some use at least in
clarifying the issue.


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