sada at ANVIL.NRL.NAVY.MIL
Thu Nov 14 07:22:11 CST 1996
>If that is true, then one can make a strong case that Shankara is
>saying "Unless you're already realized, you need to do karma yoga".
Frankly I did not follow the discussion on the Karma and Jyana and
sanyaasa . My comments can be just some stray thoughts, not necessorily any
follow up on the thread.
Just a clarification after seeing Ken Stuart quate:
What I can do is karma - action. I cannot do karma yoga. karma yoga
involves not just doing but involves some knowing. Hence Krishna actually
calls this as Budhhi yoga in Ch. II. It is the attitude in the mind born of
some knowledge turns karma - any karma - into yoga. Here knowledge of the
Lord, at least to some extent is required. To quate Bhagavaan Ramana, from
Upadesha saara -
chittasodhakam mukti sadhakam||
"Action without self-centered or without selfishness performed and offered
to the Lord will purify the mind and becomes a helful means for moksha". To
develope an attitude of devotion and love towards eeswara ( without love
there is no true offering!), one need to know who that eeswara, the Lord
is. Otherwise the offering becomes mechanical process and not with an
attitude of surrenderence in the mind.
Thus Karma yoga helps to purify the mind. "Chittasya Suddaye karma natu
vastuupa labhyate" - Bhagavaan Shankara's offen quated statement from
VivekachuuDaamani - "Action can only lead to purification of the mind not
for realization". I am quating an identical statements from Shankara and
Ramana to show that there is absoletely no difference in their teachings.
Likewise one cannot do meditation. Meditaion is not an action. One can do
contemplation not meditation. One can be in meditation. It is a noun
rather than verb.
JNana yoga as understood as vichaara or inquiry is action at the thought level.
JNanam is the knowledg of the truth (as appled to vedanta) involves (a)
vRitti JNana, same as indirect knowledge, or (b) swaruupa JNaana, same as
viJNaana, or direct knowledge with experience or realization.
Krishna provides in Ch. III - 17-19, who is really exempt from doing any
action. Every one has to participate in the wheel of action with yagna
spirit (self dedicated action with complete surrender for the benefit of
the society) - only one who is exempt is the one who is stitapraJNa - since
he is satisfied in himself by himself. (aatmanyevaatmanaa tushTaH) - there
is nothing for him to gain by action nor there is anything for him to loose
by not doing. - Yet even to those Krishna says - showing his own life as
an example - should act for the benefit of the society, otherwise he may
setup a wrong example for the unwise to follow.
In truth, ofcourse, whatever is done though the body, mind and intellect of
such a JNaani, is done only for the benefit of the society. Eswara himself
will be acting through those equipments as needed for a given environment.
Lives of Bhagavaan Shankara, Vivekananda, Ramana, Nisargadatta, and of
all great yogies are direct examples.
Likewise sanyaasa is mental too. Giving up the attachments at the mental
level not necessorily at the physical level. External sanyaasa will be
helpful - but not necessory. Since a common Hindu has greater reverence to
the sanyaasa ashrama -It can become another ego trip for sanyaasis if
he/she does not watch. Strict discipline has been laid down for those who
are entering this ashrama. But again all this for the purification of the
As some one quated Bhagavaan Ramana - if one thinks he is sanyaasi - he has
not realized! -
True sanyasa occurs only once! That is the sanyaasa of the ego! That
happens with the realization of the truth. Without that sanyaasa no
realization! Then he/she is no more a sanyaasi either!
- All others are helpful but not necessory - including the physically
taking sanyasa! Remember many of the sages of the yore are grahastaas yet
they are true sanyaasies since ego has been surrendered in the realization
of the truth.
Naval Research Laboratory
Washington D.C. 20375
What you have is His gift to you and what you do with what you have is your
gift to Him: Swami Chinmayananda
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