parA bhakti

ken knight hilken_98 at YAHOO.COM
Wed Mar 13 03:40:20 CST 2002

--- Hemant <reachhemant at ETH.NET> wrote:
Namaste Hemant,

Thank you for going back to this posting.  This is a
quote from 'Gospel of Swami Ramdas' written by his
administrator who took over his role as guide of the
ashram..Swami Satchidananda.
It really is so amazing when people oppose the
correct sense of the activity.....because we are
forced to look at things which we pass over
Because of my focus upon a particular theme I have
never queried the use of the word 'mere' in this
As you know, in India the use of English often
maintains meanings that have passed out of common
usage in the West.  I wonder if this is the case here.
We tend to use the word 'mere' colloquially as a
derogatory term...'I am a mere mortal.'
However. As a result of your comment I looked up the
word in etymological and ordinary dictionaries.
What a surprise!!!
The word means pure, absolute, unmixed. It has a
secondary meaning as 'boundary'...not secondary in the
lakshyartha sense.  Probably where our common meaning
comes from is that it also means 'simple' in the sense
of unmixed. This has probably resulted in the
derogatory meaning because we use 'simple man' as
being an unintelligent man. ( the same thing happens
with the word 'ordinary'.

I never met Papa Ramdas but have found his ashram a
place of great 'sweetness' but I do not think he would
be dismissively critical of people. So maybe he is
referring here to a 'mere jnani' as one who is
'purely' on that path, that such a one does not mix
and match a bit of karma with a taste of bhakti
flavoured by a stock of jnana.

So thank you for picking up on that one. Another
dollop of ignorance dissolve by discourse.
I have been looking through the book to find the
context of his quote but cannot find it immediately.
I will come back later if I pick up on anything
So, many thanks once again,

Ken Knight

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