[Advaita-l] Re: Patronage for learning

Navin Rajaram navinr at moschip.com
Wed Feb 16 08:30:01 CST 2005

Hari Om,

S Jayanarayanan wrote:

> The reason I remember the scholar whom I
>mentioned in a previous posting so well is because I saw my
>Guruji, who knows the entire KR^ishhNa Yajur Veda (including the
>chanting, meaning, along with the various karmas involved), and
>can speak and discourse fluently in Sanskrit, prostrate before a
>man half his age, just because the man was more learned in Vedic
>studies! It was a practical lesson that the tradition places far
>greater weight on wisdom and learning than on physical age.

This is a very valuable point you make. In his classic talk on the 
essence of performing "namaskaram" to someone and what is the role of a 
Jagatguru/sanyasi when receiving a namaskaram, Sri Kanchi Periawal had 
this to say.

"The "bhagya" of experiencing such a feeling of becoming light through 
namaskara was taken away from me at a very early age. When the dignity 
of a position is weighing me down, how to become light?

In my case (meaningfully he stresses on "my") I got two special "unlucky 
prizes". What are the two unlucky prizes? There is a general rule that a 
junior sannyasi should do namaskara to a sannyasi who is his senior. The 
senior and junior are not determined by age of the person. It is 
reckoned on the number of vyasa poojas performed. Every sannyasi has to 
perform vyasa pooja in ashada pournami. If supposing one person became a 
sannyasi at age 20, he would have performed 10 vyasa poojas by the time 
he reaches the age 30. If another person took sannyasa at 55 when the 
earlier person was only 25, then he would have performed five vyasa 
poojas only by the time he is 60 and the earlier person is 30. If they 
both meet at some time, the 30 year old sannyasi with more vyasa poojas 
will be the senior and the 60 year old sannyasi will do namaskara to 
him.... After I became a sannyasi, I have met a number of sannyasis with 
more vyasa poojas to their credit; even then, I did not do namaskara to 
them but the opposite happened. Reason, the title of Jagatguru! Even 
though I understand the title as meaning that the entire jagat is my 
guru, in common practice I have to act according to the law of the mutt 
which ordains that "the entire jagat is sishyavarga of the Jagatguru and 
namaskara to the sishya is not even to be thought of". Therefore, I 
could not do namaskara to sannyasis who were otherwise senior to me.

Still more unlucky, and that applies in my case only, is another 
circumstance. Other sannyasis becoming Jagatgurus would have performed 
namaskaras to their Guru who coronated them with the title. They must 
have done namaskaras in plenty. Here... (pointing to himself)...even 
that bhagya was not to be mine. You may know the story yourself. (the 
previous peetadhipathi attained mahasamadhi after nominating the 
successor but before coronating)."

Hari Om,

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list