[Advaita-l] Animal sacrifice

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at braincells.com
Mon Jan 9 14:24:33 CST 2006

On Mon, 9 Jan 2006, Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian wrote:

> On 1/7/06, Sanjay Srivastava <sksrivastava68 at gmail.com> wrote:
>> No. Only nitya and naimittik karmas are compulsory. Others such as
>> animal sacrifice yajna are for gaining some special results such as
>> going to heaven or getting a son etc. Only they have to perform these
>> sacrifices who are looking for such special goals.
>> An advaitin has to get over the need of animal sacrifices just like
>> other kAmya karmas. This is a part of developing requisite sAdhana
>> chatushTaya. However this avoidance has nothing to do with something
>> intrinsically wrong with animal sacrifice since animal sacrifice is at
>> par with other kAmya karmas sanctioned by vedas. Rather it is due to
>> the intrinsic nature of all kAmya karmas since all kAmya karmas
>> strengthen bondage
> What you state above has been stated as a puurva-paxa by Sankara and
> refuted in his bR^ihad bhaaShya.
> He states the entire veda has the subject matter as brahman. The
> karma-kANDa largely teaches it indirectly (rites and meditation) and
> hence is for mind purification *if done without any desire in mind*.
> The upaniShads are about meditation (e.g, about vyAhR^itis) which
> indirectly teach brahman, and direct j~naana (neti neti, etc).
> Both kANDas have only brahman as content, though in a different way.

This doesn't sound right to me (atleast in relationship to kamya karmas.) 
Where in the brhadaranyakopanishadbhashya are you refering to?

> Sureshvara, in his vaartika, explicitly mentions the theory that
> kaamaya karmas should be given up and refutes it. They should actually
> be done without desire.

Are you referring to what he calls kamavilayavada?  That's different.  The 
proponents of that theory want to enjoy karma for the express purpose of 
giving it up later because, they think, the more you give up, the greater 
the effect of its' renunciation.  This is wrong because jnana cannot 
depend on doing any amount of karma.

> It may seem like a contradiction even with the
> name kaamya, but the point is that results accrue *only* if done with
> that desire in mind. This is where advaita differs quite a bit from
> other schools.
> The desire is what is to be given up, not the karma.

But kama by its very definition involves desire.  You only perform kamya 
karmas if you desire some result.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>

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