[Advaita-l] Ramana Maharshi - Advaitin or Neo Advaitin?

श्रीमल्ललितालालितः lalitaalaalitah at lalitaalaalitah.com
Sun Oct 2 13:09:27 CDT 2016


On Sat, Oct 1, 2016 at 11:22 AM, Praveen R. Bhat <bhatpraveen at gmail.com>

> Namaste Swamiji,
> On Fri, Sep 30, 2016 at 12:08 PM, श्रीमल्ललितालालितः <lalitaalaalitah@
> lalitaalaalitah.com> wrote:
>> Please, don't reply to this for at least 2 days. I'm trying to rAghava
>> and bhAskar, both in that time.
>  I see that you've already replied to others, so I am taking the liberty
> to respond to this mail.
​That's OK.
You know the reason to request for hold. If that is not there, you are free
to proceed.

> ​I
>>>  can give the benefit of doubt while you can doubt the benefit given.
>> ​Basically, the doubt stays. So, we are not at any conclusion. That's
fine and favourable.

> You may do that, but it's not enough for those who know that he always
>> emphasised on 'knowing AtmA', and not anything else.
>> I also know that, he also heard the same thing, which you are trying to
>> tell now, from scholars of his time. It is also known that some scholars of
>> his time, who were in his contact, tried what you are doing now.
> That is quite possible. And hypothetically considering that not only did
> they do that but even the Maharshi himself came across these Shruti
> teachings only via them, I don't see any harm in it. It may have helped him
> go beyond the tvampada, that you suspect he reached, into tat and asitvam.

​This next step which you said in last sentence is favourable. Once you
accept that he initial knowledge coming from 'shock' was not aikyaGYAna and
he may have gained that after coming in contact with shAstraGYa-s, that's
fine. Although, it still is only a possibility and a guess to prove him a
brahmaGYAnI. It doesn't help his devotees to reach conclusion.

> But, that's not enough for me.
>> There is no way to know that he actually had firm conviction of aikya as
>> something which can't be known without a pramANa, shruti.
>> I have already said that his prAtibha-GYAna(samAdhija-praGYA) can be of
>> any other nature, but he may be sometimes defining it otherwise, just
>> because he came in contact with shAstraGYa-s.
> The latter is an assumption you are making,

​The assumption was made just because all here are making assumptions that
he was a brahmaGYAnI. If I have to assume that he indeed said something
which is similar to brahmaGYAna, while he doesn't have any means to gain
the same, then the best I can do is to assume that he was confused about
his own understanding or he was defining his experiencing otherwise to
match the audience.
​If I don't have to entertain any of other's imagination, then I don't have
to imagine anything.

> If you are not yet convinced about limitation of samAdhi, you may need
>> some reading of portions of naiShkarmya-siddhiH and
>> bR^ihadAraNyaka-vArttika, vArttika-sAra and pa~nchadashI.
> I am convinced of the limitations of samAdhi. However, other than removing
> doubt in the form of one's being different from anAtma, samAdhi also helps
> in vAsanakShaya.

​If you understand limitations regarding GYAna, my case is still strong.
To add, vAsanAxaya is not result of samAdhi, it just helps them suppress.
The eradication is brought by practicing shubhavAsanA and finding faults.
​kAraNa means asAdhAraNakAraNa, whenever we talk.

My argument, ergo, was that even if one who has studied these claims the
> anubhava of whatever Ramana Maharshi claimed, another cannot prove that.
> That is, another can still entertain doubt that you do.
In case of shAstraGYA, if the person has studied mImAMsA to ascertain
validity of veda-s and then vedAnta(definitely according to
advaita-sampradAya) to ascertain the meaning as aikya, there is nothing
left to cause doubt.
pramANa doesn't expect your inclination towards it.

> The only benefit of doubt you would give is that since he studied
> shAstras, maybe he really knows.

​If study doesn't generate knowledge, then what does? Not studying and some
peculiar shock!?
We are talking of kAraNa, which itself is kAryaniyatapUrvavR^itti. If you
think knowledge can't be gained by study, then you must not study yourself
and try to get some shock which again is not in your control.​

BTW, if a person has some means, it's not a small thing to lead us to
decisions. Compare it with the case of person who claims that he has gained
results without having means. It either means that you accept that without
means the result is possible, or the means is not unique.
If first, let us start sleeping for everything is going to happen somehow.
If second, let us add that shock, etc. are means of knowledge.

I am giving the benefit of doubt that maybe Maharshi studied in earlier
> life.

​Without deciding that the person had results, you can't ascertain that he
had means even in some distant time. If you are willing to guess that he
had results and so he must have means. Then I wish best of luck for you are
showing bias, which makes you unfit for a meaningful dialogue.

> I seriously doubt that those who are supporting ramaNa, has the
>> understanding of the same.
> I can talk of myself that I do understand the importance of shAstre
> prAmANyabuddhi. There cannot be more than one pramANa for any knowledge.
> However, w.r.t., I have a question.

​I'll try to clarify that.

> In a response to someone else, you said that prAmANyabuddhi in earlier
> life does not help in this life.

Any GYAna(vR^itti) is anitya and leaves saMskAra. saMskAra-s don't work
directly for any other purpose. They can only work by generating smR^iti.
And, smR^iti is generated only after the saMskAra gets uttejaka. What that
may be in case of any person?
They differ.
For the same life, they may be some person, place, similarity, relation,
For different lives?
Either specific puNya/pApa or yoga?
In case of yoga, even for that you need to verify pramANatva of
yoga-shAstra. Remember that whatever I'm saying is for a person who doesn't
rush to follow, before ascertaining prAmANya of the shAstra which teaches
pata~njalI can't be a person who knew about relation of yoga and it's
alaukika results(tArAGYAna, etc.) through other means of pramA. So, he must
have it from either Ishvara or veda-s.
Both again need proof(for existence and validity respectively).
So, anyhow you are needing shAstra-s and their prAmANya-dhI.
I think that something similar was said by chandrashekhara-bhAratI jI, when
he was supporting shAstra-prAmANya. That was posted by someone on some
forum, it may be buried in internet somewhere.

In case of ramaNa, it is not that he remembered the prAmANya-dhI. So, this
whole thing may not apply to his case.
He was sharp enough, to grasp the separate AtmA. That's appreciable.
Most(Almost all) of us are so dumb that we easily discard such experiences.
Such experiences are so common to sAdhaka-s, who practise any type of
sAdhanA(japa, dhyAna, etc.) that I'm amazed why don't we reach the height
which he gained.
Then I remember when one of brahmachArI-s in Belur Math(Ramakrishna Math
Headquarters) asked his senior about the experience : why I feel  intense
during  japa, that I'm sitting still and separate and japa is being done
automatically. And the senior replied that : That's sAxI, and the mind is
doing japa. It was so simple, but the brahmachArI didn't understand it
completely and failed to rise to height of ramaNa.
I also remember what svAmI nishchalAnanda-sarasvatI, sha~NkarAchArya of
purI, told me : The person -  who doesn't respect his experience - falls.

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