[Advaita-l] Pratyaksha is more powerful than Sruti and Smruti?

Siva Senani Nori sivasenani at yahoo.com
Mon Aug 17 11:39:00 CDT 2015

First, the meaning of मातृदेवो भव may be clarified. It does not mean that mother is a god: it means "be (भव) a person to whom mother is a god (मातृदेवः)". In other words,  mother (father,  teacher and guest) should be treated as if they were gods - i.e. they are not gods. 

Second, there is a pratyakshadeva: Sun. He is also called pratyakshanaaraayaNa.

Third, pitRkArya is like a debt. Devapuja is a nimitta karma, something done on an occasion. If a nimittakarma is done, one gets puNyam, otherwise there is no harm. If a debt is not repaid one gets paapam. Therefore, a karma which repays debts gets a higher preference. It may also be noted that the nitya karma related to gods - sandhyavandanam, tanDulahoma and brahmayajna is done before SrAddha. 

Finally this may be distinguished from the practice of Vaishnavas who postpone a SrAddha falling on ekAdaSI but will not break their upavAsa. In Telugu we have a saying that Vaishnavas are karmabhrashTas (since they uphold ekAdaSI-vrata and postpone Sraaddha) and that Smaartas are vratabhrashTas (since they break ekAdaSIvrata, but perform Sraaddha). 
For Smaartas, vratas have a lower preference compared to Karmas.

N. Siva Senani 
      From: Venkatesh Murthy via Advaita-l <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
 To: A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> 
 Sent: Monday, 17 August 2015 10:52 AM
 Subject: [Advaita-l] Pratyaksha is more powerful than Sruti and Smruti?

I am trying answer a difficult question. Kindly help me.

In our Sastras they say Pitrus are Pratyaksha Devatas reference
'Maatrudevo Bhava Pitrudevo Bhava' and so on. Our Pitrus are visible
Gods. They are seen with Pratyaksha Pramaana. The Gods like Brahma,
Vishnu, Maheshwara are not Pratyaksha but known in the Sastra like
Purana, Veda and so on.

But what happens when there is a contradiction? My friend's father
expired on Ganesha festival day. When his yearly Sraddha comes on
Ganesha festival my friend has to do Vaarshika Sraddha only. There is
no Ganesha festival for him and his family. This means Pratyaksha
Pitru Devata is more important than Apratyaksha Devata like Ganapati.

Dvaitis can say this is showing Pratyaksha is more powerful than other
Pramaanas like Sruti and Purana. This is the Dvaiti's pet theory. If
Adaviti is saying Sruti or Smruti Purana is more powerful the Ganesha
festival must be celebrated on yearly Sraddha day. But only Sraddha is
performed and Ganesha festival is not celebrated.

How to answer this?


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