[Advaita-l] Shankara authenticates Shiva

Sujal Upadhyay sujal.u at gmail.com
Thu Aug 18 06:25:16 CDT 2016

*(At times, the reply button only sends mail to individual email and not to
the group. Hence resending...)*

Pranams Smt Gayatri ji,

I am not implying your position and even in your posts you have
acknowledged that Vishnu can be formless, nirguna Brahman.

Even in my opinion, I did not mention Vishnu being just 4 forms. You must
have skimmed through the article. I have mentioned some quotes from Vishnu
Purana saying that from Vishnu (paramatman / Formless Brahman), Trinity are
created. Hence Vishnu can surely be caturbhuja and Vishnu tatvam. AS per
VP, all three - Brahma, Vishnu and Rudra / Siva are not Jiva-s. They are
separately mentioned from Jiva-s and Kala.

Pl. Ref VP 1.22.23-27, VP 1.2.31-33 and VP 1.2.61-67

VP 1.2.63 says that rudra form is assumed only when janArdana decides to
destroy the universe. In my opinion, the opinion of Adi Sankara cannot
negate shastra-s. Hence all meanings are to be taken accordingly.

In Br.Up. 1.4.6,  it is explained that agni is the God of BrahmaNa-s
Brahmins) the word 'virya' is being explained as 'mouth of BrahmaNa'.
BrahmaNa chants mantra and mantra is the Ahuti (oblation) in the agni

On other instance, it is explained in 1.4.10 that the Brahma is
a-parabrahman, else omnipresence cannot be logically explained.

If there is any third opinion, please mention that too to make the list


VP 1.22.23: [That] janArdana divides itself into four parts while creating
and preserving the universe and by dividing itself in four forms destroys
the world.

*Now, the four parts are described w.r.t. guNa-s. First it starts with
creation (rajas), then sattva (preservation) and lastly tamas guNa

VP 1.22.24-25: With one part becomes *unmanifested brahmA ji*, with second
part marici, etc prajApati, [lord's] third part is kAla and fourth is all

VP 1.22.26-27 Then that puruShottama with support (getting in tune with)
sattva guNa preserves the world. *During that time, from first part [1],
viShNu [deity of preservation] form preserves the world*, with second part,
assumes the form of manu, etc and *from third assumes the form of kAla
(time)* and from forth is present in all bhUta-s (all bodies, i.e. is
present everywhere).

*Here the classification is different than earlier verses. This is because
this classification is based on guNa-s*

*[1] The literal meaning is - from first part becomes viShNu and preserves
the universe.*

*the word unmanifested brahmA ji indicates that brahmA ji was present even
during first creation of universe and later on stayed in unmanifested form.
This is also confirmed in kurma purANa.*

VP 1.22.28-29: and in the end [when time for destruction of universe has
come], that unborn bhagavAn taking AdhAra (support) of tamo guNa (tamas
guna), with one part takes rudrarUpa, with second [part] agni (fire) and
form of death, with third kAla and with fourth stays in all bodies and
worlds (omnipresence)

Studying verse VP 1.22.26-27, we can come to following conclusion:

   - puruShottama is different from viShNu, the deity of preservation.
   - viShNu as deity of preservation, is only a part of puruShottama
   - viShNu, as deity of preservation, does not have quality of assuming
   forms of manu, etc, kAla and omnipresence (ability to be present in all
   - Assuming the form of kAla, means that puruShottama can stay nirAkAra
   - viShNu takes form with the help of three guNa-s. Hence what we see is
   actually viShNu (tatva) covered with guNA-s.

An interesting thing is that, the names viShNu, nArAyanA, hari,
puruShottama, janArdana, etc are interchangeably used with chaturbhUja
viShNu, a person. This creates a lot of confusion. But from our study, we
can conclude that whenever any form is glorified as the supreme, creator,
preserver and deity of destruction and also present in all living beings,
is mahA-kAla and assumes the form of manu, etc then it is not chaturbhuja
viShNu, it is the supreme brahman, nirguNa brahman.

Some more verses supporting the claim that viShNu is different from
chaturbhuja viShNu.

VP 1.2.61 Established [in Self], the vishveshvara bhagavAn viShNu, by
endowing itself [as brahman is nirguNa and nirAkAra] with rajoguNa, assumed
the form of brahmA jI began the work of creation

VP 1.2.62 And after finishing the creation, *by endowing itself with  the
most magnificient sattvaguNA, the great bhagavAn viShNu [as viShNu, the
preserver] sustains the creation for many yuga-s yuga-yugAntara) until the
end of kalpa*

VP 1.2.63 O Maitrei (maitrai)! then, in the end of kalpa, by endowing
itself with the painful tamoguNa, assumed the form of rudra that janArdana
viShNu [different from preserver viShNu], destroys or engulfs everything.

VP 1.2.66 The same (one and only one) bhagavAn janArdana, assumes the form
(upAdhi-s, sanGYA) of brahmA for creation, viShNu for perservation and Siva
for destruction.

VP 1.2.67 [That] bhagavAn viShNu, by becoming [or acting or assuming the
form of] creator [brahmA jI] creation itself, by assuming the form of
viShNu sustains itself and by assuming the form of Siva destroys itself and
itself [which is creation and jIva-s] merges into itself.


VP 1.22.31: *brahmA*, daxa (daksha) etc prajApatigaNa, kAla *and all living
beings* - *all these are parts (vibhuti-s) of Sri hari*
*are the cause of the creation of the world.*

VP 1.22.32: he dvija ! (twice born), *viShNu*, manu, etc, kAla *and all
beings* - all these *are the cause of sustenance of the worlds* and *are
the parts (vibhuti-s) of bhagavAn viShNu*

VP 1.22.33: and *rudra*, kAla, death, etc *and all jIva-s (beings)* - all
these *f**our parts (vibhuti-s) are of SrI janArdana* and *are the cause of
destruction (pralaya) [of the worlds].*

These verses indicate that

   - brahmA, viShNu [deity of preservation] and rudra are parts (vibhuti-s)
   of the supreme lord, viShNu.
   - brahmA, viShNu [deity of preservation] and rudra are not jIva-s as
   kAla i.e. time is not a person and the word 'all jIva-s' is separated by
   the word 'and' (ca - in sanskrit). If you take 'and' as just the addition
   of last word, then all three brahmA, viShNu and rudra become jiva-s, which
   is unwise to accept.
   - *VP 1.22.33 indicates that rudra is not a jiva*, but a form or partial
   manifestation of the supreme brahman, commonly referred by the name 'viShNu'


On Thu, Aug 18, 2016 at 4:07 PM, D Gayatri <dgayatrinov10 at gmail.com> wrote:

> //1. There is one formless Nirguṇa Brahman, but Saguṇa Brahman is only
> one - Caturbhuja Viṣṇu//
> Sri Sujal, if you are trying to imply that this is my position, I want
> to add a correction. Nowhere did I mention that Vishnu is limited to
> having 4 arms. That is just one of his forms. You have misrepresented
> my position.

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