karma and upAsana (was Re: Shiva sutras)

Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian balasr at YAHOO.COM
Wed Jul 31 11:53:48 CDT 2002

--- "Jaldhar H. Vyas" <jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM> wrote:

> That is an upasana or meditation which despite being
> located in an
> upanishad is part of the karmakanda and thus any
> tradition about its' use
> would be restricted to those qualified for it.  What
> did Swami
> Nikhilananda say?


Karma is not the same as upAsana. The ishA upanishhad
specifically distinguishes both. It admonishes
practice of karma alone or upAsana alone. Please see
sha.nkaras commentary on that. Proper practice of
karma + upAsana will lead to brahma loka, as per the
IshA and also the brahma sUtras.

In many ways upAsana is midway between karma and
GYAna. It is similar to GYAna in the sense that it is
mental, but it depends on the will of the performer,
unlike GYAna. On the other hand, it differs from karma
in being mental, but is similar to it in the sense of
being dependent on the will of the performer. Please
see sha.nkara's comments in the beginning of the
chhAndogya bhAsshya. Anand Hudli has posted this
extract on the list before.

Some upAsana-s are restricted to certain people,
example the gAyatrI upAsana. Some upAsana-s like
chanting meditating on Gods, chanting pa.nchAxarI,
shrI vidyA, etc are not restricted to any group.


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