[Advaita-l] Shankara and Kriya Yoga

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Thu Jun 6 05:31:16 CDT 2013

On Thu, Jun 6, 2013 at 2:26 PM, Bhaskar YR <bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com> wrote:

> praNAms Sri Rajaram prabhuji
> Hare Krishna>  I dont want to debate on this issue on behalf of kriya yOga
> followers...But I am interested to know which shruti pramANa you would
> give to prove the fact that HH received the yOga instruction from shiva in
> dream!!??

First, no shruti can 'prove' an event that takes place in the world at a
particular time and place.  But 'na hi dRShTe anupapannam nAma' is the rule
here that Shankara applies.  After waking from the dream if the person
finds validation for the dream instruction, then there is no doubt for him
about the instruction.  There are cases when a person receives
mantropadesham in dream and then later verifies it in the waking from that
same Acharya  and even gets clarification.

Shankara has cited the chandogya shruti in the case of dream indications
becoming true even though dreams themselves are held to be false.  He says
this in the ArambhaNAdhikaraNam:

//Scripture also (in the passage, 'If a man who is engaged in some
sacrifice undertaken for some special wish sees in his dream a woman, he is
to infer therefrom success in his work') (Chandogya Up. 5.2.9) declares
that by the unreal phantom of a dream a real result such as prosperity may
be obtained. And, again, another scriptural passage, after having declared
that from the observation of certain unfavourable omens a man is to
conclude that he will not live long, continues 'if somebody sees in his
dream a black man with black teeth and that man kills him,' intimating
thereby that by the unreal dream-phantom a real fact, viz. death, is
notified.--It is, moreover, known from the experience of persons who
carefully observe positive and negative instances that such and such dreams
are auspicious omens, others the reverse. And (to quote another example
that something true can result from or be known through something untrue)
we see that the knowledge of the real sounds A. &c. is reached by means of
the unreal written letters.//

Shankara says all this to support the siddhAnta that the veda which
although belongs to the vyAvahArika can bring about liberation that is

>  If it is not possible but accepted as truth based on guru vAkya
> I dont know why kriya yOga followers should not do that same way and
> declare the bAbAji is the kriya yOga guru of shankarAchArya!!??

It is not merely guruvAkya but supported by shAstra.

For Rajaram's observation:
//Even an apta vakya is less true if it contradicts shruti.  If it is
outside the purview of shruti and also pratyaksha and anumana, it is only
an object of sraddha and useless for anything other than upasana.//

here is a quote relevant from that very book which records the dream
instructions of the Sringeri Acharya:  p.62 where the chapter titled 'haTha
yoga' ends:


'svapnanidrAlambanam vA' Yoga sutra 1.38

[Alternatively the mind reaches the state of steadiness by having as its
object of focus a perception had in dream or sleep.]

Explaining this, Vachaspati has said in the gloss TattvavaishAradI that //a
person may see in a dream an exquisite, well-decorated image of Shiva in a
forest.  After waking up, the concerned person can recall that image and
meditate upon it.//

Rarely, a person may have a dream in which he receives initiation from God
or the Guru into a mantra.  In the Mahabharata [in ch.80 and 81 of the
drona parva] there is an account of a dream in which Arjuna received
instructions from Shiva.  Having vowed to slay Jayadratha by sunset the
next day, Arjuna was worried about how he could achieve success.  When he
fell asleep, he had a dream in which Krishna came to him and led him on an
aerial journey to the summit of the kailasa mountain.  There, they beheld
Shiva and eulogised Him.  In response to Arjuna's prayer, the Lord directed
them to fetch His bow, pinAka, and His pAsupata astra from the celestial
lake.  When the did so, a brahmacharin emerged from Shiva's side and taught
Arjuna how to discharge the pasupata arrow.  The Lord also taught Arjuna
the mantras for invoking the weapon.  Arjuna's memory of the instructions
about the use of the pasupata that he had received much earlier from Shiva
was thereby restored.  On waking up, he was in a position to invoke with
mantras and employ the irresistible pasupata, if needed.

A dream in which one sees the Guru or God is good and can be viewed as a
sign of divine grace.  However, one ought not to indiscriminately assume
that whatever instruction one has received in the dream is indeed the
directive of the Guru or God and blindly carry it out.  For instance, it
would be a grave error for one to harm another because of having dreamt of
being commanded to do so.  One should not implement what is contrary to
one's dharma nor give weight to a teaching that is discordant with the
actual position of the scriptures and one's Sadguru.

Rare are the dreams in which one is actually blessed with the instructions
of God or the Sadguru.  A sceptic who hears of a dream of this kind would,
perhaps, dismiss it as a fabrication of the narrator or seek to explain it
in some other way such as that the apparently new information acquired is
actually based on knowledge unwittingly gained earlier.  The extraordinary
nature of such dreams and the appropriateness and worth of the guidance
received through them are, generally unmistakable to the one who has them.


> Let us say the statements of Krishna, Sringeri Periyava and Babaji are
> equally unverfiable and only an object of sraddha. If Krishna's statement
> is determined as true, it serves the core purpose of directing the mind
> towards sarvajna nitya ishwara. If Sringeri Periyava's statement is
> determined to be true, it directs the mind towards sarvajna nitya ishwara
> again. If Babaji's statement is determined to be true, it directs the mind
> towards Babaji, who is at best a jAti smara jIva or a chiranjeevi.
> >  One could easily sense the subjective attachment to one particular
> personality or institution.  For that matter if bAbAji's statement is
> determined to be true, it does not directs the mind towards bAbAji, it
> directs the mind towards Ishwara / god only...through dhyAna & adhyAtmika
> jeevana one can bring god into life is the basic teaching of kriya yOgin-s
> I believe..
> One who has determined the value of discrimination between eternal and
> non-eternal will not give in to such a distraction.
> >  I agree with you...but sorry to say that my mind is still struggling to
> capture the knack of determination, hence there is lot of distraction.
> Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!
> bhaskar
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