[Advaita-l] Samnyasa and Sankara's position?

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Fri Apr 12 23:37:21 EDT 2019

Akilesh Ayyar ayyar at akilesh.com wrote:
> > On Fri, Apr 12, 2019 at 10:57 PM S Jayanarayanan via Advaita-l <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:
> > 
> > > Yes, these examples are persuasive as to Sankara's overall view. But in the
> > > Aitaraya excerpts *specifically* he seems to be saying something different.
> > > He poses no exceptions and does not soften his language. He does not say
> > > it's merely *beneficial* to take sannyasa; he says in no other station is
> > > sadhana *possible*.
> > >
> > > It's also says -- and this is very interesting -- that a jnani, whatever
> > > his ashrama was before, *always* becomes a sannyasi, because to stay a
> > > householder requires desire that is no longer present post-jnana.
> > >
> > > Again, these are very cut-and-dry, definitive statements.
> >
> >
> > Sankara does not accept Vidura and Janaka as *muktas*, only as GYAnIs;
> > as sannyAsa is a requirement for mukti (or mokSha), not GYAna.
> >
> > There is absolutely no contradiction here:
> >
> >   Vidura, Janaka: gRRihasthas and GYAnimAtras (NOT jIvanmuktas)
> >   yAGyavalkya: vidvat-sannyAsin and sthitapraGYa (jIvanmukta)
> >
> This seems hard to square with BrU 4.4.23:
> "This is the eternal glory of a knower of Brahman...He becomes sinless,
> taintless, free from doubts, and BrAhmana (knower of Brahman). This is the
> world of Brahman, O Emperor, and you have attained it--said Yajnavalkya."
> Sankara writes in commentary on this verse:
> "Such a man becomes in this state a BrAhmana...Before living in this state
> of identity with Brahman, his BraHmanahood was but figurative. This
> identity with the Self of all is the world of Brahman, the world that is
> Brahman, in a real, not figurative, sense... Janaka, thus identified with
> Brahman--helped on to this state by Yajnavalkya--replied, 'Since you have
> helped me to attain the state of Brahman, I give you, sir, the empire of
> Videha...The topic of the knowledge of Brahman is finished, together with
> its offshoots and procedure as well as renunciation. *The highest end of
> man is also completely dealt with. This much is to be attained by a man,
> this is the culmination, this is the supreme goal, this is the highest
> good. Attaining this one achieves all that has to be achieved and becomes a
> knower of Brahman. This is the teaching of the entire Vedas*."
Where in the above quoted BU passage, or Sankara's commentary thereon, does it say that
Janaka or yAGYavalkya were *muktas*? They were GYAnIs, but not jIvanmuktas - at least
not until yAGYavalkya took up vidvat-sannyAsa. 
I thought you were aware of the differences between a GYAnimAtra and the sthitapraGYa:
GYAnimAtra: BrahmaGYAna is aparokSha (Direct) and saMyak (Perfect), but asthitaM (*Unsteady*).
sthitapraGYa: BrahmaGYAna is aparokSha (Direct) and saMyak (Perfect), AND sthitaM (*Steady*).
More on this topic at:
  BrahmaGYAna and jIvanmukti - 2 (The Case of YAGYavalkya)
  (4 Nov 2006)


More information about the Advaita-l mailing list