[Advaita-l] Puri Shankaracharya's talk at NIAS, IISc, Bangalore.

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Fri Dec 29 07:33:33 EST 2017

Here is an English rendering of the Puri ShankarAcharya's address on the
topic of 'shakti' in Hindi:

" In a tree, one can see three forms of Shakti. One form of Shakti, so to
say, creates the leaves; another nurtures and protects it; while another
makes it fall from the tree, in other words destroy it. These forms of
Shakti are called Utpaadini, Paalini and Samhaarini Shakti respectively. In
Saankhya, Utpaadini Shakti is associated with Rajo guna, Paalini Shakti is
associated with Sattva Guna and Samhaarini Shakti is associated with Tamo

It is necessary that Shakti is controlled by a ‘Niyaamaka’. This Niyaamaka
must necessarily be chetanavaan and not Jada, as only a conscious being can
properly control Shakti. So, there exist three entities: Kaarya of Shakti,
Shakti and Shakti’s niyaamaka; in other words, matter, energy and maker.
Energy is the source of matter and he who controls this energy, as per the
Vedaanta Darshana, is Paramaatma.

In our life, we observe that behind any Kriya, there is Iccha and behind
any Iccha, there is Jnaana. Buddhi’s association with the Jnaanendriya
gives rise to Jnaana Shakti; Mana’s association with Jnaanendriya gives
rise to Iccha Shakti and Praana’s association with Karmendriya gives rise
to Kriya Shakti. We – the niyaamakaas of these three shaktis – are Chetan
indeed and not Jada. Similarly, as per the Shewtaashwatar Upanishad,
Paramaatma – the niyaamaka and source of all shaktis – has three Shaktis
under him, namely, Jnaana Shakti, Iccha Shakti and Kriya Shakti.

Based on the variations in the Kaarya, presence of varied forms of Shakti
is inferred in the Kaarana. Shakti can only be inferred. She is
Kaaryaanumeya – ie she can be inferred from her kaarya. It is possible to
have pratyaksh jnana of both kaarya and Shaktimaan. But, Shakti can only be
inferred and never perceived directly. Consider the example of fire.
Burning is the kaarya of fire. Both fire and the burning action of fire can
be experienced directly; their pratyaksha jnana is possible. But, the
Daahaka Shakti in the fire can only be inferred and never experienced
directly. Thus, Shakti is kaaryaanumeya. This is as per our Vaidika

There are instances where Shakti gets restrained. For example, when we burn
a piece of wood, the daahaka and prakaasha Shakti of agni are manifested.
When water is boiled by burning wood, only the dhaaka Shakti is manifested
in water and not prakaasha Shakti. When chandrakaanta mani is placed next
to this fire, only praakaasha Shakti is manifested in it and not daahaka
Shakti. On the depletion of fuel, the fire itself ceases to exit. But
Energy can neither be created nor destroyed – this is the satkaarya vaada
of Saankhyaas. So, under certain circumstances, certain aspects of Shakti
get restrainted. Under certain other circumstances, entire Shakti herself
is restrained and only her source – Shaktimaan remains. This can be
observed in our life. In Jaagrut avastha, there is Shakti and her sthoola
kaarya ; in swapna , there exists Shakti with her sookshma kaarya ; in
Sushupti , there exists Shaktimaan and Shakti devoid of any kaarya; and in
Nirvikalpa Samaadhi , there exists only the Shaktimaan. Similarly, during
Pralaya, all the kaarya dissolves into Shakti and Shakti herself unites
with her substratum ie Maheshwara.

By contemplating in this manner, we can understand the vijnaana of
Paramaatma. "

I thank my friend for the above rendering.


On 16 Dec 2017 12:09, "V Subrahmanian" <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com> wrote:

> : https://youtu.be/etyXXHr9Ojk
> 👆Puri Shankaracharya's talk at NIAS, IISc, Bangalore.

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