Ms. Aikya Param aikya at IX.NETCOM.COM
Thu Nov 14 13:09:05 CST 1996

Namaste mitraaNi!

These are odd statements.

>>The original question was whether it was possible to attain jnana and
>>continue in ones worldly life.  The answer is simple.  No.

So what are the swamis doing?  They are official renunciates. If they
are eating and travelling and teaching and accepting donations and build-
ing ashrams and publishing books, is this some new class of karma that
doesn't happen in the world but on some other plane of existence but we
see it, hear it and get annoyed with it if they are also having romantic trysts
with the ladies?

If one cannot attain brahmaGYaanam.h and continue one's worldly life, then
what are we saying about Lord Krishna and Lord Rama?  Were they both
ignorant?  Pardon me but they were both very involved in their worldly
roles as soldier/king (Krishna) and Heir Apparent and then King (Raama).

In the west we don't have a sannyaas option the way there is in India.  It's
not quite the same thing to join the ranks of the homeless as it is to join the
ranks of the sadhus in India.  Sanyaas is a lifestyle option within a social
system which also supports those who choose it.  It has clear legal and
religious definitions.

This knowledge has gone beyond those India.  It's important to look
at what is the intention, the idea behind these social forms referred to
in these texts..

Also, it may help if people remember that Shankara was writing for a bunch
of swamis often so he could make his comments in support of the lifesyle
they all had adopted.  He was perfectly clear that karma, including lifestyle,
doesn't produce the paramaatma in a person.

To be a normal. well balanced successful person anywhere doing anything
requires renunciation.  That is my observation after  thirty months
intensive study with Swami Dayananda at Sandeepany West in Piercy, CA
and now fourteen years "in the world".  It seemed to me that our ashram at
Piercy CA, funded by the hard earned money of Chinmaya Mission
members was very much in the world as well.  We bought vegetables, did the
cooking, maintained the cars the grounds and the buildings, get along with
each other or didn't get along with each other.  Seemed just like "the world" to


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