[Advaita-l] Why should I believe in Adwaita vedanta over any other Philosophy?

Umashankar V urshankar at gmail.com
Tue Oct 26 13:07:36 CDT 2010

Dear Praveen ji,

Great response!  my response in-line...

On Tue, Oct 26, 2010 at 9:57 AM, Praveen R. Bhat <bhatpraveen at gmail.com>wrote:

> Hari OM, Umashankar ji,
> On Tue, Oct 19, 2010 at 6:14 PM, Umashankar V <urshankar at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > The problem is that of reference of what is absolute and what is not. In
> all
> > philososphies , except Charuvaka and buddhistic literature, there is
> > acknowledgement of existence of The Lord.
> Factually, not even all the six systems of orthodox Indian
> philosophies talk of God, let alone Buddhism or Jainism.
> Can you please answer this - was Veda, pramana for the six systems? Is
there any pramana in the Veda for niriswara vada? It is wrong to claim that
any one of the six systems including saankhya, denied Ishwara.

If you think any of the six systems denied Ishwara, please give me the Veda

> > The Lord is The Self in Advaita. The Lord is the Supreme Lord in
> non-advaita
> > philosophies where in some maintain that a human can never be or become
> the
> > Lord and that he can only be aspiring in devotion to The Lord and do
> service
> > unto Him.
> >
> Bhagavatpada, therefore, doesn't accept that such a servant separate
> from That is free.

One must take time to choose the Guru
> > (given today's circumstances of having to see god-men everywhere with
> > excellent spiritual lingo but not essentiually spiritual stature..) ,
> there
> > are genuine acharyas and Gurus available for the seeker and they need not
> be
> > in ochre robe or in the garb of an announced ascetic.
> Bhagavatpada Shankaracharya mandates the Guru to be shrotriya, even if
> not brahmaniShTA since the latter is a qualification that an aj~nAni

shiShya cannot recognize.

Kindly quote the authority

> The former is a must
> within the tradition. In the strictest of the traditions,

What do you mean by strictest tradition, what is Samskrit equivalent to this
term? and who said that there is the strictest tradition, stricter tradition
and strict tradition? Are these these three traditions within the shrotriya
tradition? Where is the Veda pramana for ochre robes??

the Guru
> will have to be necessarily a saMnyAsin. On a related note, I just
> returned from Rishikesh and had the good fortune to visit an
> ashram where prasthAna trayA, prakaraNa granthAs, etc, are taught in
> the sampradAyik manner. There, even the student has to be a naiShTika
> brahmacAri to study and is also required to
> wear ochre!
Sir, the same acharya has told in His Bhajagovindam that there are even
folks who wear ochre robes 'udara nimittam'.. Gurupurnima is supposed to be
Vyasa purnima because Sri Vyasa Maharshi was Adi Guru and he was not a
sanyasi but a grhasta and was not known to wear ochre robes. Does your
strictest tradition eliminate Sri veda Vyasa? I know, this is what they
teach out there in Rshikesh, its a pity..

Once a seeker
> > identifies a Guru, one must TOTALLY surrender to the Guru and then from
> > there onwards, the spiritual journey is fully the Guru's responsibility,
> not
> > his... Hence the importance to choosing the right Guru, a genuine one.
>  Here
> > too, the choice is made by the soul and not the ego-prone mind.
> I don't think soul chooses anything. The Atman is ever-free and
> without any action. By saying that the soul chooses, its like saying
> that the soul acts, which is not true, being sAkshi mAtra.

> > This will ensure, that one has reached the right path of progress and
> will
> > eventually reach The Lord or The Self as the Lord deems fit!...
> >
> > *The point of whether advaita or non-advaitic philosophies are better has
> NO
> > PLACE whatsoever in a true, genuine seeker's mind.  A true seeker should
> > seek a Guru , his faith and prarabda will lead him, not his mental
> > decisions.*
> How will a true seeker seek a Guru if he has no opinion on advaita or
> non-advaita philosophies? One has to know if the Guru is a shrotriya
> as per advaitic tradition. Else he will not know a Guru
> in the first place.

Sir, I beg to differ. Sri Bhagavatpada himself offered pranams to the
chandala and said he is indeed guru who taught him a very important import
of advaita. Did Sri Bhagavatpada violate his own norms that he laid down?

Many have attained Self Realization by the grace of Bhagavan Sri Ramana, by
no standards of tradition can one lose such a Guru if one does get the
bhagyam to be enveloped by His grace. Will you advise the contrary? Is
Bhagavan Ramana not a Guru?  What about the 24 gurus mentioned by Sri
Dattatreya? Do you acknowlede Dattatreya the Shrotriya, sir?

> >
> > If this question is still there, then the seeking is not spiritual but
> > rather superficially mental for academic and self-aggrandising pursuits
> > driven by the ego. There can be no two thoughts about it.
> Its just one side of the coin. The j~nAna mArga, especially as sown by
> Bhagavatpada Shankara, needs a deep study of prasthAna trayA and
> prakaraNa granthAs, so one can resolve the
> dvandva that a thinking mind has. Such study appears to be academic
> but need not be so. Only if one has the shravaNa in some life can one
> do proper manana. As Bhagavan Ramana says
> the mind seeking itself is like a thief acting as police and this is a
> pitfall that is avoided by right manana led by shAstra j~nAna. The
> shAstra vAsana can drop only then, else its just the mind
> fooling one as to leading on to spiritual seeking, but actually
> wanting to survive its own nAsha.

Bhagavan Ramana has not advised anybody to read prastAna trya. He did not
conduct classes, issue certificates or put any preposterous conditions for
mukti. He did not, nor did he pack off any of his disciples to these schools
or training centres run by the know-alls.  He did not even acknowledge this
kind of institutionalized guru-sishya mechanism. How many muktas have come
out of those groups that apotheosized reading of prastAna trya? Are you
aware of how many people got mukti by the Grace of Sri Bhagavan Ramana? Are
you not aware of the story of Veda khyata ? I can personally show you
atleast 25 people who took to PrastAna Trya promoters seriously, spent their
lifetime for it and not yet sure of their mukti. Reading PrastAna Trya is
neither necessary condition nor a sufficient condition for mukti. If this
statement is wrong, Sri Ramana is wrong.

> > A person in duality , in maya, can never PROVE non-duality with dual
> devices
> > at disposal wihtin this world.
> Hence the need for a traditional Guru who uses the very tools of this
> duality to prove the non-duality. This is akin to the dream lion which
> can not only wake one into the reality of the world, but
> also make him sweat and tremble in fear.

Who is the Lion in your analogy? How does a Shrotriya use the lion and how
are others doomed to fail in using the lion? Where is the clue?


sadAshiva samArambhAM shankarAcArya madhyamAM asmadAcArya paryantAM
> vande guru paramparAm.h. Glory to the tradition.
> shrIgurupAdukArpaNamastu,
> --Praveen R. Bhat
> /* Through what should one know That owing to which all this is known!
> [Br.Up. 4.5.15] */
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