[Advaita-l] svargakAmo yajeta (was Re: kAmya karmas)

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Fri Jan 13 19:54:12 CST 2006

--- Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian <rama.balasubramanian at gmail.com> wrote:

> I forgot to mention, the fact that particular rites are required for
> some particular results is not disputed by advaitins. So, one cannot
> desire lordship of the world or heaven and perform sandhyaavandanam.
> It's just not going to work, the ashvamedham or the jyotiShToma are
> what need to be performed. Otherwise we may as well throw vidhi, etc.,
> into the dustbin and do whatever we please.

I have had this doubt for sometime now, so if someone knows the resolution, or
if there's a traditional authority that has commented on it, please let me

Consider P = Person Desirous of Heaven.

"svargakAmo jyotishhTomena yajeta" is an injunction: "P SHOULD perform the
JyotishhToma sacrifice."

In other words, it is a command on P - he is obligated to perform the

Now, there is also a "nindA" (condemnation) associated with the JyotishhToma
sacrifice performed by P, as Sureshvara has pointed out in the VArtika quoted

plava hi ete priixyeti tathaa tadya iha, iti ca |
nindaashrute.h na kaamyaanaa.m kaaryataa adhyavasiiyate || 327

>From the texts which condemn (optional  rites), such as "These are transient",
"Thus he examined", "they, like those in this world", it is detemined that
optional (kaamya) rites should not be performed.

Sureshvara answers:

vidhi-nindaa-samaavesha.h na evam api upapadyate |
phala-abhisandhi-maatre tu nindaayam eva yujyate || 328

Coexistence of injunction (vidhi) and condemnation (nindaa) can never happen.
The condemning texts make sense only when they refer to the (desire for the)

Vidhi for P - "P SHOULD perform the JyotishhToma."
nindA for P - "P performing the JyotishhToma is condemned."

My question is - Why is it that for P, there is a vidhi (command) to perform
the JyotishhToma and at the same time a nindA (condemnation) associated with
its performance (i.e. vidhi and nindA are coexisting for P, which Sureshvara
says can never happen)?

In simple terms - why is there a "stigma" of sorts on a person with desire
performing the JyotishhToma purely for the sake of Heaven, which is strange
since the Veda itself commands the performance of the sacrifice for such a
desirous person?


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