vijaykartik_2004 at yahoo.com
Mon Apr 12 09:05:28 CDT 2004
Parallel traditions still have to reflect historical facts in essence.
Anything that is in total contradiction to well-accepted and age-old understanding of history cannot be reckoned as tradition.It is obviously nice to say that all the eminent saints belonged to its lineage so that the public image of the Mutt is benefited. However such claims of tradition have to bear some semblance of credibility.
Just to quote an example:
The Kanchi Mutt claims that:
- Vidya Theertha was one of the Acharyas of the Kanchi Mutt in the 13th century!!
- Vedanta Desika was a disciple of Vidya Theertha at Kanchi!!
It is well-known that Vidya Theertha adorned the Sringeri Peetam. Even Madhva literature recognize Vidya Theertha as the Sringeri Acharya who engaged in debate with the Madhva saint.
The Vaishanava bhaktas of Vedanta Desika would be shocked to read such worng references about the guru of their revered Desika. It is strange why Desika has not referred to this guru of his in any of the numerous works he authored.
Such claims are just the product of wild imagination.They cannot be called tradition. Just because the unsuspecting public would believe anything that is claimed, Mutts cannot distort history.
Ravishankar Venkatraman <sunlike at hotmail.com> wrote:
>From: "Jaldhar H. Vyas"
>Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Sankaracharya
>Date: Fri, 9 Apr 2004 01:31:21 -0400 (EDT)
>On Thu, 8 Apr 2004, Ravishankar Venkatraman wrote:
> > Unfortunately this tradition is from Sri Sadasiva Brahmendra Saraswathy
> > Swamigal (acknowledged to be the biggest mystic in several centuries by
> > Sankaracharyas and other yogis). This is at least 400 years old.
>Personally I do think that Kanchis' claim to be one of the original even
>the central Math established by Adya Shankaracharya is not tenable.
>However you are right that the lineage of sannyasis whose names end in
>*indra Saraswati is older. There is literary evidence for atleast 400
>years as you mentioned.
Jaldhar, I do see your point here. What is being brought to light by kanchi
mutt is what they have had as a tradition. The Guru Parampara which mentions
all the Acharya's names by Sri Sadasiva Brahmendra is one of the key
documents for extrapolating the dates to 2500BC, with a list of Acharyas.
Sri Sadasiva Brahmendra Saraswathy was not an Acharya of the mutt as he was
married for a short period of time. He lists all the previous acharyas upto
His guru (Sri Paramasivendra Saraswathy), in Guru Ratna malika stotram,
with their names, place and the date of mukthi. Under a financially
difficult period in 18th and 19th centuries, with the Kanchi Acharyas having
meagre resources to do Sri. Chandramoulishwara puja, I doubt whether they
were worried about having to spend their money on information systems to
prove their validity in future.
Now when someone observes how Kanchi mutt can come up in such a detail adout
the Acharyas' names, places and the tithi etc. is certainly a valid
question. But this is THE TRADITION, with the information being passed down
from Sri. Sadasive Brahmendra. We really cannot do much here.
If you read the book "Adi Sankara: His Life and Times", Sri.
Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Swamigal concludes his view of the
Bhagavathpada's life, primarily based on Siva Rahasyam, with additional
justification from Sankara Vijayas. His Holiness view is also traditional in
that way. The copies of Siva Rahasyam, which were used by His Holiness were
obtained from Maharaja of Kashi library. They were not from Kanchi mutt
I am bound to think that a parallel tradition, having a link between Kanchi
mutt and Sri. Bhagavathpada should have existed in the past, but became
weak over centuries. When the British started rewriting Indian History, Sri
Sankara's life became a controversy,for the first time people started
comparing the available hagiographies.
We see that in many temples, we have a tradition from sthala puranas, which
may not be found in the regular 18 puranas. Sometimes they contradict each
other, still we do go to the temple, and the all merciful God is still kind
to us, irrespective of what you think is correct. This is something like
>By the way, I also don't agree with the Dwarka maths figures either (which
>incidently contradict some of their own earlier publications which
>acknowledge the 788-820 AD date) so this is not just a matter of party
>politics for me.
I understand the predicament. On one hand, they find the Sringeri mutt
matching up with 7th Century AD, but with their list of 70 Acharyas they
cannot fit into this period.
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