[Advaita-l] Shankara and DrishTi-SrishTi vAda - eka jeeva vaada

Praveen R. Bhat bhatpraveen at gmail.com
Mon May 23 08:13:44 CDT 2016

Namaste Ryan ji,

On Mon, May 23, 2016 at 3:26 PM, Ryan Armstrong <ryanarm at gmail.com> wrote:

> A question has arisen about the statement you made:
> " Else, all other questions, not restricted to creation story alone, are
> needed for
> explanation of everything seen in vyavahAra and prAtibhAsika, before one
> lands on pAramArthika tattva."
> The first question is - why is an explanation of all these questions
> necessary for the understanding of "tat"?

Any explanation is necessary considering the student, his/her background
and doubts that arise due to the same. If the student has no *ongoing*
questions related to "all this", which is the creation/ jagat, there is no
need for the creation story, which brings in the jagatkAraNam...

The reason I ask it is:
> This does not seem to be what the Father (UddAlaka) is stating.
> He points out repeatedly "sa ya eshonimaitadAtmyam idam sarvam"
> "That which is the subtle essence is the self of all this."

My reference was to the SDV creation stories which are compared with a tiny
bit of svapnavat in DSV.

So surely the explanation is of the "subtle essence", not the "all this".
Yes, so that the student is led to the right question, which is
mokShakAraka, not "all this". The entire prakriyA is to establish an
all-pervading jagatkAraNam tat as Ishvara and then telling the student that
Ishvara is you!

> The creation process describes how the "all this" came about, not the
> "subtle essence".

Because "all this" is felt as real by a student who sees this in vyavahAra
and so has more questions regarding this anAtma mithyA jagat than the
"subtle essence" which has never come about, but is eternal.

The second question is (and please pardon my impudence - I am not trying to
> gainsay what the gurava have stated) why should the emphasis be on "tvam".

Finally, what bothers anyone, is the limited being that one takes oneself
to be. Each and every situation, person and thing other than oneself is
more and more limiting. So the obvious stress is on tvam. It may be
surprising to some that Sureshvaracharya's doesn't really talk about
Ishvara at all in his Naishkarmyasiddhi but focuses on tvampada only, being
the most difficult to understand. Moreover, as I stated earlier, the
padajnAna of all three words of tattvamasi or the vAcyArtha of the same is
not mokShakAraka. Only the lakShyArtha understanding is mokShakAraka.
However, OTOH, tvam all by itself, and I stress as-understood-with-DSV, is
mokShakAraka. In other words, all three padAs are needed to be understood
with their vAcyArtha and lakShyArtha for it to be mokShakAraka using SDV,
while a single tvampada is mokShakAraka using DSV.

> If we, being ignorant, already knew the "tvam" there would be no need for
> instruction.

Had we not been ignorant, there would be no need for instruction.

> Isn't it precisely because, under avidya, the tvam is mistaken for the
> manas, deha etc and is not known as "tat" that this instruction is given.

True, but if the tvam teaching itself tells you are not any of the body,
mind, senses, but you are sacchidAndasvarUpa, everything else is svapnavat,
it covers the lakShyArtha of tattvamasi directly.

> The mahavAkya is, in my understanding, declaring the identity between the
> tat and the tvam.
> Surely both parts are equally important.

Yes, for one who has the above mentioned questions and/ or *svapnavat*
itself sounds bogus or blasphemy, all parts are not only important, but
necessary. Shruti caters to all adhikAris.

Having said that, I don't mix prakriyAs in my own sAdhana, still I would
never say that SDV or DSV, etc, has no place. Each prakriyA developed in
the tradition even after Bhagavatpadacharya definitely suits a category of
seekers. I respect all of them. One should stick to the prakriyA that works
for oneself in terms of removing each and every doubt that blocks the
self-knowledge, unless the goal itself is not mokSha!

--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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