Posted by: adbhutam | April 8, 2021

‘Subrahmanya is Para Brahman’ – article in English

Namaste

Here is an article in English on the topic of ‘Subrahmanya, Skanda, is Para Brahman’. There are many texts cited in this article to substantiate the point. The article is available here for download:

Om

Pl. access the article here:

Om Tat Sat

This is regarding a supposed debate between Sri Akshobhya Tirtha (first generation disciple of Madhvacharya) and Sri Vidyaranya, the towering Advaitin.

ಶ್ರೀ ಸೋಸಲೆ-ವ್ಯಾಸರಾಯ ಮಠದ ಇಂದಿನ ಪೀಠಾಧಿಪತಿಗಳಾದ ಶ್ರೀ ವಿದ್ಯಾಶ್ರೀಶ ತೀರ್ಥರು  ‘ಅಕ್ಷೋಭ್ಯ-ವಿದ್ಯಾರಣ್ಯರ ವಾದ’ವನ್ನು ಕುರಿತು ಒಂದು ವಿಚಾರ-ಸಂಕಿರಣವನ್ನು ಏರ್ಪಡಿಸಿ, ಅದರಲ್ಲಿ ಮೂವರು ವಿದ್ವಾಂಸರಿಗೆ ಈ ವಿಷಯವನ್ನು ಕುರಿತು ತಮ್ಮ ತಮ್ಮ ವಿಚಾರಗಳನ್ನು ಮಂಡಿಸಲು ವ್ಯವಸ್ಥೆ ಮಾಡಿದ್ದರು.  ಈ ಸಂದರ್ಭದಲ್ಲಿ ಹೊರಬಂದ ಅಭಿಪ್ರಾಯಗಳನ್ನು ವಿಮರ್ಶೆ ಮಾಡಿದ್ದಾರೆ ಧಾರವಾಡದ ಶ್ರೀ ಜಿ.ಆರ್. ಪಾಟೀಲ ಅವರು ಈ ಕೆಳಗಿನ ಲೇಖನದಲ್ಲಿ:   
https://adbhutam.files.wordpress.com/2021/03/grp-on-aksh-vidya-sem-vrm-.pdf

Om Tat Sat

For the word ‘Vishnu’ occurring in the Vishnu Sahasra Nama as the very second name, Shankara gives this grammatical derivation:

वेवेष्टि व्याप्नोतीति विष्णुः विषव्याप्त्यभिधायिनो नुक्प्रत्ययान्तस्य रूपं विष्णुरिति | देशकालवस्तुपरिच्छेदशून्य इत्यर्थः –

[As it envelops, pervades, it is called ‘Vishnu’. For the root ‘viSh’ which conveys the meaning ‘pervading’, the suffix ‘nu’ is added to derive the word ‘vishnu.’ It means: That which is free of limitations due to space, time and object.]

From this we clearly understand that for Shankara the ‘Vishnu’ in this VSN is not an individual entity but the Brahman of the Vedanta which is not limited by space, time and object. The last one, object-wise limitation, can be understood thus:

A is different from B and so is B from A. This is called ‘bheda’, difference. Here, A, not being B, is ‘absent’, abhava, in B. So is with B. Thus there is anyonya abhava of A and B (in each other). This is what is meant by A limiting B and vice versa as an object. Such a difference can exist only between created things and not in Brahman. If Brahman is admitted to be different from everything ‘other’ than it such as gods, humans, animals, etc. and all inert objects, that amounts to admitting the abhava of Brahman in all these and their abhava in Brahman. This will result in Brahman not Purna; it will have to remain a-purna. Hence alone Brahman is devoid of vastu-pariccheda. Shankara cites a verse from the Mahabharata:

व्याप्य मे रोदसी पार्थ
क्रान्तिरभ्यधिका स्थिता ।
क्रमणाद्वाप्यहं पार्थ
विष्णुरित्यभिसंज्ञितः ॥ ( महाभारत, शान्ति ३४१/४२-४३)

[My reach pervades heaven and earth and also beyond it, ‘adhikaa’ (heaven and earth). Since I (have) tread (in the Trivikrama form) heaven and earth too I am known as ‘Vishnu’.] (The Trivikrama form, too, has to be understood as not devoid of the vastu-pariccheda shunya aspect.)

From the above verse we get an important point: Brahman not only pervades all creation but is ‘above’, ‘beyond’ creation as well. This is stated in the Purusha Sukta: ‘अत्यतिष्ठत् दशाङ्गुलम्’ = adhikaa (It is beyond the creation by 10 inches, meaning, it is beyond creation as well). In other words, Brahman is known to be everywhere, everything in creation but also exists as transcending creation. It is this transcendental aspect of Brahman that is to be known, realized, for liberation.

Shankara has given us a very clear, unambiguous, meaning for the word ‘Vishnu’ which is very easily mistaken, restricted, to mean a deity with conch, discus, etc. and is absolutely different from all other entities. Shankara has thus conveyed that for him the term Vishnu as Brahman means Nirguna Brahman.

There itself, Shankara has given another etymology for Vishnu: विशतेर्वा नुक्प्रत्ययान्तस्य रूपं विष्णुरिति | Here it means: by ‘entering’ the entire created universe, it is called Vishnu. He cites a verse from the Vishnu Purana:

यस्माद्विष्टमिदं विश्वं यस्य शक्त्या महात्मनः ।
तस्मात्स प्रोच्यते विष्णुर्विशोर्धातोः प्रवेशनात् ॥ ३,१.४५ ॥

[Since the entire world is ‘entered’ by Its Power, It is called Vishnu upon the basis of the root ‘viSh’ meaning ‘entering’.]

In the above meaning too, the Nirguna aspect is retained and not given up since the ever pervading Vishnu cannot really ‘enter’ something different from itself. In other words, the world with all its content can’t be ‘outside’ Brahman for the latter to be able to ‘enter’ it. Shankara has at great length discussed the meaning of the word ‘pravesha’ in the Taittiriya Upanishad bhashya. An article on this topic of pravesha is available here: https://adbhutam.files.wordpress.com/2021/02/pravesha-shruti-purport.pdf

Om

Posted by: adbhutam | March 10, 2021

New Book: “108 Facets of the Inimitable Guru”

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 💥NEW BOOK (English)💥
“108 Facets of the Inimitable Guru”

This book is a lucid exposition on the 108 nāmas constituting the sacred aṣṭottara-śata-nāmāvalī of HH Jagadguru Śrī Abhinava Vidyātīrtha Mahāsvāmin, 35th Jagadguru Shankaracharya of Sringeri Sri Sharada Peetham. The nāmāvalī was composed by His successor and the 36th Jagadguru, HH Śrī Bhāratī Tīrtha Mahāsvāmin.

The book is embellished with fascinating anecdotes from HH’s life and with His edifying teachings. It has been published with the blessings of the Jagadgurus of Sringeri, HH Śrī Bhāratī Tīrtha Mahāsvāmin and HH Śrī Vidhuśekhara Bhāratī Svāmin.

On the auspicious occasion of Mahashivaratri 2021, the Centre for Brahmavidya (www.CentreForBrahmavidya.org) is pleased to offer the print & e-versions of the book.

Copies of this 304-page book priced at  ₹100 are available with:
Sri K. Parthasarathy

Whatsapp/Phone: 73583 88704
Email: contact@CentreForBrahmavidya.org

Please contact us with your Name, Address, Mobile no.,  Book title and No. of copies required. (Postage ₹25 per parcel.)

FREE download of the e-book:
https://www.centreforbrahmavidya.org/acharyas/sri-abhinava-vidyatheertha-mahaswamiji/108-facets-of-the-inimitable-guru.html


Happy Mahashivaratri!🙏

Here is a Shanti Mantra that Advaitins chant as part of their daily study of Vedanta:
This one is from the Shvetashvatara Upanishad:
यो ब्रह्माणं विदधाति पूर्वं
यो वै वेदांश्च प्रहिणोति तस्मै ।
तं ह देवं आत्मबुद्धिप्रकाशं
मुमुक्षुर्वै शरणमहं प्रपद्ये ॥ १८ ॥ 6.18

Meaning of the mantra:
I, the aspirant after liberation, take refuge under the Paramatma who created the Chaturmukha Brahma and blessed him with the Vedic knowledge, who impels the inner organs of all beings.
This mantra is part of the Shanti mantras Advaitins chant before and after their daily Vedantic study. In this mantra, the one who blesses the four-faced Brahma, is Rudra.  This would be clear to anyone who studies the Shvetashvatara Upanishat. 
The following mantras, from this Upanishad, say the same as the above mantra:
यो देवानां प्रभवश्चोद्भवश्च
विश्वाधिपो रुद्रो महर्षिः ।
हिरण्यगर्भं जनयामास पूर्वं
स नो बुद्ध्या शुभया संयुनक्तु ॥ ४ ॥ 3.4
यो देवानां प्रभवश्चोद्भवश्च
विश्वाधिपो रुद्रो महर्षिः ।
हिरण्यगर्भं पश्यत जायमानं
स नो बुद्ध्या शुभया संयुनक्तु ॥ १२ ॥ 4.12

Brahma being created is the purport of the above mantras. 
In this link is the full reading of the text of this Upanishad:
https://advaitasharada.sringeri.net/display/moola/svt
Shankara has cited this Upanishad and the above first stated mantra several times in his Brahma Sutra Bhashya. 
Veda Vyasa has summarized/rephrased the entire Shvetashvatara Upanishad in this Chapter of the 7th Section of the Shiva Maha Purana:

https://sa.wikisource.org/s/hyj

One who studies both the above provided texts in the two links above would realize that the Shiva Purana eminently reflects the Shvetashvataropanishad. 

रुद्दुःखं दुःखहेतुर्वा तद्रावयति नः प्रभुः ॥ 36ab
रुद्र इत्युच्यते सद्भिः शिवः परमकारणम् ॥ 36cdShankara, in his commentary to the Vishnu Sahasra Nama, for the name ‘Rudra’, has cited the above verse from the Shiva Purana.  The verse says Rudra is the Supreme Cause of the creation. 

न तस्य कश्चित् पतिरस्ति लोके
न चेशिता नैव च तस्य लिङ्गम् ।
स कारणं करणाधिपाधिपो
न चास्य कश्चिज्जनिता न चाधिपः ॥ ९ ॥ 6.9
The above verse from the Upanishad says: There is no Lord in the world (for Rudra), No Ruler for Rudra, there is no indicatory mark, linga, for Shiva. He is the Cause, the Lord of the jivas (who are lords of the sense/motor organs). There is no progenitor or boss for Rudra. 
One who is familiar with the Sri Rudram of the Yajur Veda would quickly notice the several mantras almost all of them verbatim cited in the Shvetashvatara Upanishad. 

एको हि रुद्रो न द्वितीयाय तस्थु –
र्य इमांल्लोकानीशत ईशनीभिः ।
प्रत्यङ् जनास्तिष्ठति सञ्चुकोचान्तकाले
संसृज्य विश्वा भुवनानि गोपाः ॥ २ ॥ 3.2.
The above mantra says Rudra is the Cause of creation. Rudra is One without a second. [It may be noted that Sri Ramanuja, finding this Upanishad and the above mantra in particular, detrimental to his philosophy, has made an attempt to ‘convert’ the Rudra to Vishnu in his Vedartha Sangraha. However, for Advaitins, since the Upanishadic Brahman is not a finite individual, vyakti, who is different from other individuals, gods or humans or any other, but the all-pervading tattva, there is no need to enter into such gymnastics.]    
It may also be noted that no Vaidika has labeled the Shvetashvatara Upanishad a ‘taamasic’ Upanishad. 
One can read the English  translation of the Shve. Upanishad here: 

https://www.shankaracharya.org/svetasvatara_upanishad.php
Om Tat Sat

Posted by: adbhutam | February 22, 2021

Can the ‘real’ pose an obstacle in knowing the Real?

In the Upanishads an ‘Adhyatma Yoga’ is taught to get the direct realization of Brahman: 

तं दुर्दर्शं गूढमनुप्रविष्टं गुहाहितं गह्वरेष्ठं पुराणम् ।
अध्यात्मयोगाधिगमेन देवं मत्वा धीरो हर्षशोकौ जहाति ॥ १२ ॥  Kathopanishat.1.2.12
That which is seated secretly in the cave of our intellect, is to be known through the adhyatma yoga and become liberated. 
The method of this Yoga is also taught there:

यच्छेद्वाङ्मनसी प्राज्ञस्तद्यच्छेज्ज्ञान आत्मनि ।
ज्ञानमात्मनि महति नियच्छेत्तद्यच्छेच्छान्त आत्मनि ॥ १३ ॥  1.3.13
The sense/motor organs have to be resolved in the manas, this in turn in the buddhi, this to be merged in the Hiranyagarbha tattva and that in the Pure Consciousness, the Truth. 
However, this is not an easy thing to achieve, says this Upanishad:

पराञ्चि खानि व्यतृणत्स्वयम्भूस्तस्मात्पराङ् पश्यति नान्तरात्मन् ।
कश्चिद्धीरः प्रत्यगात्मानमैक्षदावृत्तचक्षुरमृतत्वमिच्छन् ॥ १ ॥ 2.4.1
The Creator has damned the sense/motor organs to be outward turned.  Hence one is always busy with the outside world and does not get to know his true nature. Some rare one, determined to achieve the goal, puts all efforts to restrain his outward turned nature and directs the power to realize the Truth. And succeeds.  

That the world is not to be contacted during this exercise is taught in the Bh.Gita: 

स्पर्शान्कृत्वा बहिर्बाह्यांश्चक्षुश्चैवान्तरे भ्रुवोः ।
प्राणापानौ समौ कृत्वा नासाभ्यन्तरचारिणौ ॥ २७ ॥  5.27
The sound, touch, etc. world perception is to be given up and one is to be inward turned. 

शनैः शनैरुपरमेद्बुद्ध्या धृतिगृहीतया ।
आत्मसंस्थं मनः कृत्वा न किञ्चिदपि चिन्तयेत् ॥ २५ ॥ 6.25
The mind is to be resolved in the Atman and nothing else is to be thought of.
Thus, for a direct realization of the Truth, the world-perception is taught to be an obstacle.  

The question arises: Brahman is the Real entity. If the world too is admitted to be real, how and why does a real be an obstacle to realize the Real? It is clear that a real world is a contradiction to the knowledge of the Real Brahman. 

The remedy/answer is: The inevitable division, categorization, of real into two different ones: One is primarily real and the other, secondarily. With the help of various adjectives one will have to say: eternal real and fleeting real,  independent real and dependent real, Immutable and the mutable real, etc. The terminology in Advaita for this is: Paramarthika and Vyavaharika satya (mithya). This is the only way to get over the problem of real being an obstacle for realizing the real.   
There is no way other than admitting a two-fold Real for all schools. Shankara has stated this in the Brihadaranyaka Bhashya 3.5.1:

नामरूपोपाधिदृष्टिरेव च भवति स्वाभाविकी, तदा सर्वोऽयं वस्त्वन्तरास्तित्वव्यवहारः । अस्ति चायं भेदकृतो मिथ्याव्यवहारः, येषां ब्रह्मतत्त्वादन्यत्वेन वस्तु विद्यते, येषां च नास्ति ; परमार्थवादिभिस्तु श्रुत्यनुसारेण निरूप्यमाणे वस्तुनि — किं तत्त्वतोऽस्ति वस्तु किं वा नास्तीति, ब्रह्मैकमेवाद्वितीयं सर्वसंव्यवहारशून्यमिति निर्धार्यते ; तेन न कश्चिद्विरोधः । न हि परमार्थावधारणनिष्ठायां वस्त्वन्तरास्तित्वं प्रतिपद्यामहे — ‘एकमेवाद्वितीयम्’ (छा. उ. ६ । २ । १) ‘अनन्तरमबाह्यम्’ (बृ. उ. २ । ५ । १९), (बृ. उ. ३ । ८ । ८) इति श्रुतेः ; न च नामरूपव्यवहारकाले तु अविवेकिनां क्रियाकारकफलादिसंव्यवहारो नास्तीति प्रतिषिध्यते । तस्मात् ज्ञानाज्ञाने अपेक्ष्य सर्वः संव्यवहारः शास्त्रीयो लौकिकश्च ; अतो न काचन विरोधशङ्का ।  सर्ववादिनामप्यपरिहार्यः परमार्थसंव्यवहारकृतो व्यवहारः ॥

[ For all proponents, the division as to Paramarthika and Vyavaharika is inevitable.] 
One may not like the term mithya but when it is clear that one aught not to think of the world during the exercise for realizing the Truth, one comes to the conclusion that the world has no place in Brahman, the Real. For the one who is in the process, the world is not there. If one considers it to exist, the Upanishad/Gita says ‘there is no realization of the Truth.’  One has to, by default, realize that Brahman which is bereft of, devoid of, the world. In other words, one has to realize that Brahman has no relation whatsoever with the world. However, even though Brahman, in truth, is totally unrelated to the world, we forcefully, ignorantly, superimpose it on Brahman.  This is what we get to know from the message of the Upanishad and the Bh.Gita. 

Om  

With regard to the eligibility to study the Veda, all the traditional schools are in agreement. The Smritis cited by them too are the same. Even Vallabha and Nimbarka agree with the earlier Three Acharyas. Here is a short article in English consisting of the Bhashyas, English translation and an image from Gautama Dharma Sutra:

Click to access eligibility-to-the-study-of-the-veda.pdf

Om Tat Sat

In this article pages from the books of many scholars of Dvaita and Advaita are included. Even a pre-Shankara Buddhist book is cited:

The English version of the article is not yet prepared. 
‘ಅದ್ವೈತ ಪ್ರಚ್ಛನ್ನ ಬೌದ್ಧವೆ?’
ಈ ವಿಷಯ ಕುರಿತಾದ ಒಂದು ಲೇಖನ ಇಲ್ಲಿದೆ: 
https://adbhutam.files.wordpress.com/2021/01/advaita-bauddha-discussion.pdf

ಇದರಲ್ಲಿ ವಿದ್ವಾಂಸರಾದ ಶ್ರೀ ನಾಗಸಂಪಿಗೆ ಆಚಾರ್ಯರು, ಡಾ.ಬಿ.ಎನ್.ಕೆ.ಶರ್ಮಾ, ಪೋಲಗಂ ರಾಮ ಶಾಸ್ತ್ರಿ ಮುಂತಾದ ಅನೇಕರ ಗ್ರಂಥಗಳಿಂದ ವಿಷಯ ಕೊಡಲಾಗಿದೆ.  ಶಂಕರಪೂರ್ವ ಬೌದ್ಧ ಗ್ರಂಥವೂ ಸೇರಿದೆ.

Om Tat Sat

Here is an article in Kannada on the Advaitin’s response to some views of the well known scholar Late Sri Bannanje Govindacharya in a video interview. The article can be access here:

Om Tat Sat

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