[Advaita-l] Jagadguru Speaks: Karma Essential to Attain Jnana

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Fri May 4 16:51:26 EDT 2018

(Around the beginning of the month, a nugget of Wisdom from the Jagadguru may be posted
on the Chaturamnaya list :  http://lists.advaita-vedanta.org/cgi-bin/listinfo/chaturamnaya )
The highest grace for man is attainment of jnana (wisdom) and, through that, moksha. It is for this that jignasus strive. But some people have a doubt - if jnana alone is the means for attaining moksha, where is the need for the karmas mentioned in the Sastre Will notjnana come directly?
The answer is - not all can attain jnana at one stroke. The karma vasanas (fruits of action) of several births will be blocking it. Unless one attains chitta suddhi (purity of mind) one cannot be eligible for jnana. Performing the karma mentioned in the Sastra with dedication to lsvara alone will help one attain chitta suddhi. Hence, Sastra, which defines the rules of karma, is not without authority.
This is what Sankara Bhagavatpada says in his bhashya.
  na cha evaM karmavidhishruteH apraamaaNyaM
  pravRRityutpaadanaarthatvaat.h .
That is, blocking the previous inborn activities and promoting newer and newer occupations, it helps the approach to the antaratma (inner soul). The rules of karma apply only to those who have not attained jnana; not to one who has attained it.
  mithyAtve.api upaayasya upeyasatyatayaa
  satyatvaM evasyaat.h ...
Though superfluous for one who has attained jnana, there is definite gain for one striving for jnana.
Lord Krishna says in the Bhagavad Gita (3.20):
  karmaNaiva hi saMsiddhimAsthitA janakAdayaH .
  lokasaMgrahamevApi sampashyan.h kartumarhasi ..
It means that even jnanis, such as Janaka, performed karma for the benefit of others.
Hence, as chitta suddhi is important for jnana, we bless all to perform karma, dedicating it to lsvara, and attain chitta suddhi. 

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