[Advaita-l] Fwd: Advaita-l Digest, Vol 75, Issue 5

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Wed Oct 6 05:17:51 CDT 2010

Dear Sri Rajaram,

Supposing there is a Madhva grihastha, doing Agnihotra.  Upon taking
sannyasa, will he continue to do agnihotra?  Will he continue to have shikhA
and yajnopaveeta.? This rule is common for both Smarthas and Madhvas.  So,
even for them there is a certain giving up of sva-karma upon going to the
higher ashrama of sannyasa. Even in Smarthas, Sannyasis have certain
observations like danDa-tarpaNam, praNava japam, etc.  There are rituals
pertaining to deekshAvisarjanam (shaving the beard and head), chAturmaasyam,

//In this (doctrine) only the giving up of one's own duties is expounded.
(padma puraaNa, uttara-khaNDa, 236.8)//

To mention this to sound as if this is 'exclusive' to Advaita is what the "
Padmapurana" verse does which is what I am pointing out.
Pl.ease read further down.
On Wed, Oct 6, 2010 at 12:43 PM, Rajaram Venkataramani <
rajaramvenk at gmail.com> wrote:

> *Advaita does teach karma sannyasa, while encouraging the ignorant alone to
> perform veda karma for citta suddhi.

For the Gita verse 4.20, Shankara comments, in part, thus:

//Actions together with their accessories must be relinquished by one who
has become thus (enlightened), because they have no end to serve. This being
so, api, even though; he remains abhi-pravrttah, *engaged as before*;
karmani, in actions  -  getting out of those (actions) being impossible  -,
either with the intention of preventing people from going astray or with a
view to avoiding the censure of the wise people; sah, he; eva, really; na
karoti, does not do; kincit, anything, because he is endued with the
realization of the actionless Self.//

So, nowhere Shankara recommends the giving up of one's duty.  Even what you
see in the first sentence of the above quotation has its basis in the
Brihadaranyaka Upanishad mantra: '....putraiShaNaayaashcha,
vittaishaNaayaashcha, lokeshaNaayaascha vyutthaaya atha bhikshAcharyam
charanti'.    If for any reason the jnani is not able to leave the
grihastha/brahmacharya ashrama, even then Shankara says one should not give
up one's duties 'sva-karma'.  Even the Lord says in the 3.25 and 26 that the
Jnani remain in the midst of ajnanis and be a role-model by doing the
ashrama karmas for their benefit.  The Panchadashi too teaches very much on
these lines.  So, there is no way that Advaita teaches 'giving up of one's
duty' that will lead to 'And that is said to be religiousness by those who
have fallen from all duties.' sarvakarmaparibhraShTairvaidha
rmmatvaMtaduchyate | Pa Pur 6.236.9 ||

Thus Advaita never teaches unscripturally (1) 'giving up of one's karma'
that would lead to (2) 'karma bhraShTatva' as the interpolator thinks.
Shankaracharya and the other Acharyas in the sampradaya have very carefully
seen to these aspects, maintaining the scriptural teaching on these aspects
meticulously.  None can point an accusing finger at Advaita on this count in
particular.  So, there are at least two counts where the interpolator has
erred regarding his understanding of Advaita.

> The purpose of this citta suddhi is to develop jnana, which is
> characterized by renunciation. Sankara categorically
> says that knowledge and karma cannot be combined. According advaitins, Hari
> bhakti is also karma only though. On realization of the Self, there is no
> bhakti including so'ham, gopalaham, sivo'ham etc.

All this is definitely not true according to Advaita.  When a person
considers Gopala as the Supreme Brahman, he can definitely do the gopaloham
anusandhana with regard to the nirguna aspect of Gopala. So also with Shiva
and any other deity.  Jnanis in the sampradaya have done this eminently.
Recently i heard these words in Sw.Paramarthananda ji's lectures on

 //dvaitam mohAya bodhAt prAk. prApte bodhe manIshayA
 pUjArtham kalpitam dvaitam advaitAdapi sundaram//
The meaning is:  Dvaita deludes one before enlightenment.  Upon
enlightenment, however, the dvaitam 'created' intentionally, for the purpose
of indulging in PUjA, the resultant experience is that this kalpita dvaitam
is even more joyful than advaitam.

> So, I'm not sure why the
> padma purana verses demonstrate incorrect understanding of advaita. *
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