Ninth International Congress of Vedanta

Vidyasankar Sundaresan vidya at CCO.CALTECH.EDU
Fri Jan 31 22:40:16 CST 1997

A small correction:

>     Department of Philosophy, Miami University, Oxford, OH 45056, USA
>             Conference Director: Prof. S. S. Rama Rao Pappu
>               Office: (513) 523 2439; Home: (513) 523 2944
>                           FAX: (513) 529 4731
>                 EMAIL: RRPAPPU at MIAVX1. ACS.MUOHIO.EDU

>From ADVAITA-L at TAMU.EDU Sat Feb  1 12:31:21 1997
Message-Id: <SAT.1.FEB.1997.123121.0500.ADVAITAL at TAMU.EDU>
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 12:31:21 -0500
Reply-To: "Advaita (non-duality) with reverence" <ADVAITA-L at TAMU.EDU>
To: "Advaita (non-duality) with reverence" <ADVAITA-L at TAMU.EDU>
From: Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian <rbalasub at ECN.PURDUE.EDU>
Subject: Ekajiiva vaada
Comments: To: Advaita List <advaita-l at>
Content-Type: text

Anand wrote:

[ ... ]

>    academic discussions and books on philosophy. So I feel this point can
>    be hardly overemphasized. This is the approach of the Vedas/Vedaanta.
>    This approach is for the benefit of aspirants, and certainly not to
>    mislead them.

[ ... ]

I think this point is very important and has been well put by giving the example
of arjuna from the BG. The sUta sa.nhitA also says "all the paths, vedanta, the
various Agama-s, shaiva, vaishnava etc even the buddhists and that of arhats has
been given by the Lord maheshvara himself. He is supremely compassionate, so
how can he be a deceiver? Like leading a cow by giving grass, the Lord leads
them to the supreme, by giving what is suitable for them. Yet of all paths the
vedAnta is the best since it leads directly to Him" (paraphrased from a
translation which I read). This point, as you mention, is missed by lot of

>    Coming back to the various vaadas, both sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi and
>    dR^ishhTi-sR^ishhTi are sublated in the final paaramaartha state.
>    In this case, it is perhaps more sensible to accept the one which
>    appeals to commonsense of the vyaavahaarika level. According to the

Correct! I don't know if I made it clear in my original post, but I am not
"against" sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi or any thing like that. It so happens I am more
comfortable with the other vAda, since the explanation of the most important
upanishhad, i.e., the mANDUkya seems more natural to me from this point of
view. Not that the other vAda is un-acceptable, many upanishhad-s including the
pai.ngala upanishhad follow this technique. Also the reasoning process in this
seems more straightforward to me. This is also in part because this was what I
was taught by my father in the very beginning itself.

>    dR^ishhTi-sR^ishhTi vaada, there is only a single jiiva, trying to
>    attain liberation. All other jiivas, Ishvara, Guru and Shruti are all
>    objects imagined by this jiiva. The jiiva must listen to an imaginary
>    Guru's instruction, and follow imaginary scriptures. So the jiiva
>    must cheer itself on toward the final goal of emancipation. This theory
>    looks so absurd from the commonsense viewpoint that it can only be
>    practised by advanced students, as HH Abhinava Vidyatirtha implies.

The example given by sureshvarAchArya and also by HH abhinava vidyAtIrtha
mahAsvAmigaL is that the unreal can lead to a comprehension of the real. An
analogy would be a frightening event in the dream can cause one to wake up,
though the frightening event itself is unreal. Similarly the shruti causes the
jIva to wake up from the sleep of mAyA. There are also various other analogies,
which I'll skip here.


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