Aurobindo on Shankara (was Re: Jaldhar Vyas on Veda)

Sankaran Kartik Jayanarayanan kartik at ECE.UTEXAS.EDU
Wed Apr 3 12:22:12 CST 2002

On Wed, 3 Apr 2002, Hemant wrote:

> Namaskara,
>          I reside in Sri Aurobindo Ashram. I would be grateful to learn from Sri Vyas something more about the following.
> a) Why Sri Aurobindo's interpretation of the Veda is unreliable.

Because Aurobindo does not consider Shankara's interpretation as reliable.
This is a mailing list where Shankara's views on the Veda supersede all
other views on the subject.

Extracts from
begin quote--------------

Sri Aurobindo on Integral Yoga and Other Paths (Letter One)

I do not agree with the view that the world is an illusion, mithya...

The Shankara knowledge is, as your Guru pointed out, only one side of
the Truth... This other side was developed by the Shakta Tantriks. The two
together, the Vedantic and the Tantric truth unified, can arrive at the
integral knowledge.

But philosophically this is what your Guru's teaching comes to and it is
obviously a completer truth and a wider knowledge than that given by the
Shankara formula...
end quote--------------

So Shankara's philosophy was less than complete, and the tAntriks had
"progressed ahead" of him?!? Aurobindo does not stop there, obviously he
thought that Shankara's philosophy was also wrong on many points:
begin quote--------------

Sri Aurobindo on Integral Yoga and Other Paths (Letter Three)
If that is Shankara's philosophy, it is to me unacceptable and incredible,
however brilliantly ingenious it may be and however boldly and incisively
reasoned; it does not satisfy my reason and it does not agree with my
experience. I don't know exactly what is meant by this yuktiv\=ada. If it
is meant that it is merely for the sake of arguing down opponents, then
this part of the philosophy has no fundamental validity; Shankara's theory
destroys itself.
end quote--------------

> b) What is this top downwards approach of modernists.
>           Some hints I have gathered about Sri Vyas's mindset but if he could clarify a bit more I shall be obliged.
>avacetanAya brahmaNe namah,


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