[Advaita-l] Tattvabodha of Adi Sankaracharya - 10

H S Chandramouli hschandramouli at gmail.com
Tue Mar 17 09:41:25 EDT 2020

Namaste Raghav Ji,

Reg  << 1. Can we talk of there being adhiSThAna devatAs for other entities
encountered in vyavahAra?. Such as planet earth as a whole (prithvI devatA
surely), hills and mountains (maybe himavAn or some parvata devatA?), viral
diseases such as small pox, herpes zoster, nCov-19 etc., (maybe various
female devata-s govern their arising and spreading as per the beliefs in
vogue in indian folk traditions?)>>,

There is an elaborate discussion on Devatas in BUB 3-9-1 to 3-9-18. Also
BSB 1-3-26 to 1-3-33. Following is based on my broad understanding of the

All aspects of Creation, covering adhyAtmika/adhibhautika/adhidaivika, are
governed by adhiSThAna DevatAs. Though their number is countless, they are
categorized into and considered as manifestations of thirty three entities,
namely eight Vasus, eleven Rudras, twelve  AdityAs, Indra and Prajapathi.
This number is further compressed successively to six,three,two,one and a
half, and one.

Details concerning these 33/6/3/2/1.5/1 are covered in BUB referred above.
You may like to refer to the Bhashya itself for details. The purpose of the
discussion therein is not so much from the point of view of listing their
roles, but rather from the point of view of upAsana. As you know, details
concerning Creation per se is not given any importance in the Upanishads.
Its importance is mostly from the standpoint of upAsana.

 Reg  << 2. What about devatA-s for modern "discoveries" such as the power
gravity which is such a huge cosmic determinant of the way things are in
this physical universe? Is there an adhidaivika aspect viz., a devata for
gravity? >>,

Surely yes. In fact the adhiSThAna devatA for apAna vAyu at the adhyAtmika
level is Vishvasrushta as given in Laghu Vasudeva Mananam.The Devata for
power of gravity is considered to be the same at the adhibhautika level
though I do not recollect right now where I had come across this. The
function of apAna vAyu is to " force down ".

Reg  << 3.  If we examine the case of cosmic laws that govern the energetic
functioning of all stars, then the Sun itself is just a small Star, one
among billions. So can we assert that this vedic devatA revealed as "sUrya"
is the wielder of the samaShTi power behind all stars which makes them
function using fusion etc., the way they do, not only our Sun? >>,

I think a reference to BUB I have mentioned above should clarify this.

It may be worthwhile emphasizing once again what I have stated above,
namely details concerning Creation per se is not given any importance in
the Upanishads. Its importance is mostly from the standpoint of upAsana.


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