[Advaita-l] Advaita and other philosophies

rohit ubhayaker rohit8ganesh at yahoo.co.in
Wed Apr 21 01:30:23 CDT 2004

Dear  Saadhakas ,
While  on  this  topic  of  "Advaita vs  the  other  schools" ,  I  would  like  to  make  certain  observations  especially  because it  was  mentioned  that  all  non- Advaitic  schools  decided  to  concentrate  their  energies  on  our  Darshana .

   The  Maadhva  school  claims  antiquity  from  the  time  of  Lord  Hamsa .  They  say  that  their  first  Aachaarya  among humans  was  Shri  Para Teertha  Svaami . The  appendage  "Teertha"  is  clearly  a  Dasnanaami  one . Again  one  of  the  Shankara  Digvijayas ( Shri  Aanand Giri's  version )  declares  that  while  on  Digvijaya , Shri  Hastaamlakaachaarya  converted  many  Braahmans  to  Advaitic  Vaishnavism  nearabout  Rajatapeetha  ( Udipi ).This  is  indirectly  supported  by  the  biographers  of  Shri  Madhvaachaarya . They  say  that  his  Guru  Shri  Achyutapreksha  Teertha  was  an  Advaitin .
   Until  the early  half  of  the  18th  century , the  Gaudiya  Vaishnavas  did  not  consider  themselves  to  be  a  branch  of  the Udipi  Maadhvas . They  started  this  tradition  during  an  all- Vaishnava  Sammelana  near  Jaipur  in  Raajasthaana .Until  this time  they  maintained  that Shri  Krishna  Chaitanya  Mahaaprabhu  was  a  reformer  of  the  old  Advaita  school , as  his  Guru  was  Shri  Keshava  Bhaarati , an  Advaitin devotee  of  Shri  Krishna.
   The  Gaanapatyas  centred  around  Morgaon  near  Pune are  unique  among  Vedaantins . Their  most  revered  saint  is  Shri  Ganesha  Yogeendra  Svaami , whom  they  call  an  Avataara  of  Lord  Vinaayaka  Himself . Their  uniqueness  is  due  to  the  fact  that  they  acknowledge  Bhagavaan  Shrimad  Aadi  Shankara  as  a  Guru  in  their  Paramparaa  ( which  they  claim  is  descended  from  the  Shringeri  Matha ).  They  follow  the  Advaitic  school , though  their  philosophy  is  more  like  Shrivaishnavism , with  Vishnu  being  replaced  by  Vinaayaka .However  they  are  not  fanatical , though  they  do  claim  that  Lord  Ganapati  is  the  highest . They  say  that  in  Kaliyuga , when  the  religion  of  devotion  to  Ganapati  was  about  to  disappear , Shri  Aadi  Shankara  saved  it . They  also  state  that  Shri  Shankara  visited   Morgaon and  reformed  the  worship  of  Shri  Mayooreshvara Vinaayaka  there .THIS  SEEMS  TO  BE  THE  ONLY  SCHOOL
 OF  ADVAITA  WHICH  ACKNOWLEDGES  SHRI  AADI  SHANKARA  AS  GURU. Thus  this  school  of  philosophy  is  unique.

With  love ,

Rohit  N. Ubhayaker.

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