[Advaita-l] Vikalpa, Savikalpa, and Nirvikalpa

kuntimaddi sadananda kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Fri Aug 24 19:46:35 CDT 2012

Jnaanam at the intellectual level which we all understand as Shree Vidyashankar pointed out is paroksha jnaanam and what Shree Vidyaranya calls as pratibandhaka jnaanam or an objectified knowledge. Swami Paramarthanandaji gives an example of overhead tank being full and tap is open but no water is coming, implying that there is some obstruction in the free flow of water. Similarly understanding as understanding as a thought is different from understanding as understanding as a fact, as JK puts it.
Jnaanam and jnaananishTa thus differ since the abidance in the knowledge is not there even though one has understood by the shravana and manana - hence scriptures understanding this as very common problem - prescribes nidhidhyaasana.
 Nidhidhyaasana is not a means for knowledge but a means to remove the obstacles that prevent complete recognition of the fact that I am nitya mukta swaruupaH or in Krishna's term - aatmani eva aatmanaa tushTaH - full recognition that I am full and happy as I am and therefore do not depend on anything  the world for my happiness. This in fact is the litmus test for anybody to know whether they are jivanmukta or not. No one is looking for existence or consciousness but everybody is looking for happiness. aham brahmaasmi involves I am full and complete by myself – understanding as a fact implies that I do not depend on whatsoever for my happiness – This is the only litmus test for a jnaani – Hence Krishna’s declaration – aatmani eve aatmanaa tuShTaH – is sthitaprajna.
Obstacles for internalization of jnaanam come from, as Vidyashankar pointed out, are due to inadequate preparation of the mind – or incomplete chitta suddhi – or lack of the four-fold qualifications. Nidhidhyaasana – need not be samaadhi that involves similar to yoga methods but it is recognition or remembrance of the teaching constantly in all transactions. This is beautifully accounted in the sloka – brahma arpanam brahma haviH… brahma karama samaadhinaa. That sloka obviously meant for gruhastha (since agnihotra is involved) and seeing, karthaa, karmaa, kaarya, kaaraka, phala of the yagna – and by extension in any action that a jnaani is involved where all the five (karthaa etc.) are involved – recognition each of them is Brahman only by constant remembering (smaraNa) of the teaching tat tvam asi –is Krishna calls it as samaadhi – brahma karma samaadhinaa. The other nidhidhyaasana that involves arresting all other thoughts and
 constant flow of thoughts deliberately on the self – what Vidyaranya in pacadashi Ch.1 Sloka 54 calls as –yekataanatvam – using yogic terminology. The deliberate flow of thoughts (prayatna involved) slowly leads to aprayanta thought flow where one abides in that knowledge which he calls as Samadhi as nidhidhyaasanam – this depends on the individual training – but the effect of this not gaining knowledge but removal of pratibandhaas only or internalizing knowledge gained by shravana and mananam. 
The adhikaaritva bhedas that Shree Vidhyashankar mentioned applies to the degree of purity of the mind in understanding of the mahaavaakyaas, whether intellectually or factually. How long it takes to internalize the knowledge depends on the how pure the mind is. For some it may take the whole life itself. This is what also implies – tyaagenaike amRitatvamaanasuH – where one has to give the wrong notions that essentially involve– happiness is out there. One has to impartially judge oneself (not the others) how far I depend on anything other than myself for my happiness. 
sarvam paravasham duHkham sarvam aatma vasham sukham|
yetat vidyaat samaasena lakshaaNm sukhaduhkhayoH||
says ManusmRiti. Any dependence on other than oneself is bondage and complete dependence on oneself for one’s happiness is liberation. This in essence is the definition for bondage and liberation. 

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