[Advaita-l] Commentary on Ramana's Forty Verses

jaldhar at braincells.com jaldhar at braincells.com
Sun Jun 20 01:59:08 EDT 2021

On Sat, 19 Jun 2021, Akilesh Ayyar via Advaita-l wrote:

> Namaste,
> I know they eat because they don't want to die, which is exactly why "dead
> to themselves and their possessions" cannot be interpreted literally, as
> had been suggested.

Uh YOU suggested it.  You were responding to:

n Wed, 16 Jun 2021, Ven Balakrishnan via Advaita-l wrote:

> Ramanamaharishi is entirely consistent with Sankara saying a jnani will
> inevitably take up the life of a paramahamsa ascetic, since s/he has no
> desires, no fear, no attachments, not even to body-mind - like a snake
> that has shed its skin.

Nothing in that quote implies it is being taken literally.  That is a 
strawman of YOUR creation.

On Sat, 19 Jun 2021, Akilesh Ayyar via Advaita-l wrote:

> You suggest it means instead "to leave the web of social relationships and
> the karma that powers them," but that's clearly equally untrue.

There is a thing called society which is the support for people whos goals 
in life are artha, kama, and preferably dharma.  This is often referred to 
as the world.  For instance the materialistic hedonists of ancient times 
known as Charvakas are also known as Lokayatas, "worldly ones."  There are 
those who renounce this "world."  This is what we refer to as being "dead 
to the world."  You seem to be under the impression that if a word or 
phrase is not used literally it can mean whatever you want.  But in real 
life, human languages have idioms, customary usages etc. which may perhaps 
have fuzzy edges but in general are understood to have specific meanings. 
Everyone seems to understand what "dead to the world" means except you.
I wonder why?

> Ramana and
> Ramakrishna and Sankara all were very much in a web of social relations
> with the associated karma. Interacting with devotees, talking about the
> Self, being involved in ashram life... all of that is social relations.

We've been over this before.  Karma is intentional action motivated by 
desire.  Hunger, sleep etc. aren't karma because they are instinctual.  To 
know Brahman, to discuss Brahman and to pass on the knowledge of Brahman 
is not karma because it is not motivated by desire but by abidance in 
Brahman.  These are not "social relations."

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>

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