Giri gmadras at ENGR.UCDAVIS.EDU
Wed Aug 20 13:24:14 CDT 1997

On Wed, 20 Aug 1997, Jaldhar H. Vyas wrote:

> On Sat, 16 Aug 1997, Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian wrote:
> >
> > Jaldhar, I have read many works of shrI sha.nkara and shrI sureshvara
> > and know quite well that GYAna and karma cannot be combined. All I said
> > was in a few and rare cases GYAna may be obtained without going through
> > the physical Ashrama of sannyAsa. shrI sha.nkara very clearly says so in
> > his BG bhAshhya and also in the BSB. References were provided and please
> > do look it up. Read the orginal sanskrit itself. It's the same shrI
> > sha.nkara you are also quoting. You have said nothing about those
> > quotes, except that shrI sha.nkara is not the pope.
> >
> The question at hand was whether a _householder_ could be a sannyasi.  I'm
> saying they cannot.  You're saying that physical sannyasa is not
> neccessary exactly 100% of the time.  These views are not incompatible.
> So what's the arguing about?

        The argument is simple. You say that anyone who is not in the
sannyaasa ashrama (external sannyas) can not be a jnani. I have quoted
Shankara from BGB, Ramana Maharshi and Rama has recently even quoted the
HH of Sringeri saying that it is *possible* that a person not going
through the sannyasa ashrama may be a jnani (like Janaka). But it is
extremely rare and should not be used as an _excuse_ to continue in the
life of a householder.

        Basically, the argument is this : Do you think it is at all
possible that a householder/king etc. can be a jnani ? The answer is yes,
it is possible, not probable, according to Shankara. Of course, you can
differ from Shankara, but you can not claim that only your view is the
advaita vedantic tradition.

        And don't complain that I haven't read His works in sanskrit. You can
even find few of my translations of Shankara's works in
Of course, my knowledge of sanskrit is rudimentary, but I can understand
enough to judge whether the translation is satisfactory or not.

AUM shaantiH

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