[Advaita-l] Meditation Vs nitya karma

Bhaskar YR bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com
Thu Oct 16 05:50:29 CDT 2008

sAshtAnga praNAms Sri Vidyashankara prabhuji
Hare Krishna

Thanks for your clarification prabhuji.

Sri Vidya prabhuji :

One thing we must remember is that all depends on the adhikAra of the
individual. A lot also depends on which purushArtha is being emphasized.
If we are talking about dharma, then yes, japa, bhajana etc. are not
substitutes for the prescribed nitya-karmA. However, if we are talking
about moksha, then all these karma-s are only preparatory. There comes a
stage when the need to do any of these karmA-s decreases and then
completely vanishes.

bhaskar :

Yes prabhuji, I am trying to find out whether people, those who have
*adhikAra* to do prescribed karma, are willing to perform it or just giving
some lame (or vedAntic excuses like sarvaM khalu idam brahma etc.) excuses
to pass it over.  Ofcourse, our nitya karma-s are aimed to achieve all the
four purushArtha-s, that is the reason why we, in saMkalpa say, dharmArtha
kAma mOksha chaturvidha phala purushArTha siddhyarThaM etc. etc. Though
Karma is a preparatory & an aid to purify our mind for higher pursuits of
jnAna, it_is_a_must as long as we are enjoying the benefits of our
respective ashrama..Is it not prabhuji?? Yes, there comes a state where an
aspirant come out of the wrong notion that he is katru & bhoktru etc. but
that state is ultimate and we cannot take that state for granted when we
are still pursuing the path of Atma jnAna.  Kindly correct me if I said
anything wrong.

Sri Vidya prabhuji :

Neither of these is conducive to the pursuit of jnAna. For those who
have a clear goal of jnAna at heart, there is no need to pit one against
the other. The nitya-karmA at the personal level is primary, other
practices can be added as per one's choice and convenience.

bhaskar :

Yes prabhuji, we dont have much choice to say either japa/bhajan or sandhya
when we are still in an environment where duties are obligatory..one cannot
say I am not interested in my routine nitya karma-s & rituals and at the
same time celebrating his daughter's marriage or naming ceremony of his son
in a posh way :-)) When he is engaging himself actively in social
activities, enjoying all other benifits of a householder he cannot show
aversion towards his veda vihita nitya & naimittika karma-s.

Sri Vidya prabhuji :

However, I would seriously object to clubbing together japa,
nAmasankIrtana, bhajana etc. under the title of meditation. In the
vedAntic sense, dhyAna is a very different thing from japa and bhajana.

bhaskar :

Kindly elaborate how vEdAntic dhyAna is different from normal (or should I
say yOgic) dhyAna?? Further, I dont think 'japa' a sAdhana in the real
sense is something less efficacious than meditation.  IMHO, *japa* sAdhana
does have more inherent powerful efficacy than what we normally think of
it. So, I think both dhyAna & japa are equally efficacious in one's
sAdhana...Hence the term japa yOga has been used by Krisna in gIta. as you
know, in the gIta, Krishna has referred to this aspect of spiritual sAdhana
as the best among the known methods of approach to God. yajnAnaM japa
yajnOsmi (vibhUti yOga ??) So, Japa too, is regarded as the most
efficacious method of spiritual practice because it is inwardly connected
to the ultimate goal of yOga i.e. Atma jnAna. So, prabhuji I think noway we
can infer that japa sAdhana will occupy the second bench behind dhyAna in
the class of adhyAtmika sAdhana:-)) This is what I think, and this is what
gives me inspiration  to do more & more gAyatri japa in saNdhya...

Anyway prabhuji, yours is the final word on this...I await your

Your humble servant

Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!


More information about the Advaita-l mailing list