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

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Mon Apr 15 15:04:13 EDT 2019

On Wed, Apr 10, 2019 at 8:18 AM V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com>

> On Tue, Apr 9, 2019 at 6:36 PM Akilesh Ayyar via Advaita-l <
> advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:
>> Namaste Bhaskarji,
>> May I ask how you would interpret the Aitareya introduction excerpts that
>> I
>> posted? I would be quite interested to know. Particularly these quotes:
>> *Not so... the constant habit of resorting to any particular house of
>> one's
>> own is prompted by desire. When there is no clinging to any particular
>> house of one's own, there follows begging alone, as a matter of course...*
>> and
>> *From the fact that a fresh injunction of renunciation, despite its
>> emergence as a matter of course (as in the case of a man of illumination),
>> is met with [footnote: In Br. Up. III v. I. etc. -- 'Knowing this very
>> Self, the Brahmanas renounce...and lead a mendicant life."] ,it becomes
>> evident that it is obligatory for the man of illumination.
> The shruti passage quoted above has been interpreted differently by two
> authorities:
> In the Jivanmukti viveka, Sri Vidyaranya takes this passage as authority
> for vidvat sannyasa.  In the gloss to the Brihadaranyaka Bhashya for this
> passage, Sri Anandagiri says 'this is a reference to paroksha jnana.'  I
> had pointed out this remark by Anandagiri ( I think in two places) to
> renowned scholars some years back. Members here may please verify the above
> and give their opinion.

The bhashya for the specific part of Br.Up.3.5.1 is:

तद्बलेन हि व्युत्थानम् , ‘एतं वै तमात्मानं विदित्वा’ (बृ. उ. ३ । ५ । १)
विशेषवचनात् । तस्मात् त्रिभ्योऽप्येतेभ्यः अनात्मलोकप्राप्तिसाधनेभ्यः
एषणाविषयेभ्यो व्युत्थाय —

For the above, Sri Anandagiri says:  इतश्च ब्रह्मविद्या
दैवाद्वित्ताद्बहिरेवेत्याह - तद्बलेनेति |  प्रागेव वेदनं सिद्धं चेत्किं
पुनर्व्युत्थानेनेत्याशङ्क्य   प्रयोजकज्ञानं तत्प्रयोजकमुद्देश्यं तु
तत्त्वसाक्षात्करणमिति विवक्षित्वा आह - तस्मादिति | प्रयोजकज्ञानं
पञ्चम्यर्थः | व्युत्थाय भिक्षाचर्यं चरन्तीत्यर्थः |

The meaning of the above gloss is: For this reason too, Brahmavidyaa is
outside the realm of daiva vitta (upasana). If knowledge is firm/attained
already (before itself), what is the purpose/use of renouncing? To this
question / doubt / objection, the Bhashyakara replies -
[therefore/thereafter] this knowledge that they have at present is
something that will result in a yet to be attained result (prayojaka
jnaanam). That result (prayojyam/uddeshyam) that is intended to be attained
is: tattva saakshaatkaaram. With this purport in mind the Bhashyakaara says
tasmaat, thereafter/thence.  prayojaka jnaanam is the subject matter of
this panchami word 'tasmaat'.

From the gloss of Anandagiri it is clear that the 'Knowing' is not the
direct realization of the Self but something, a knowledge that is yet to
result in direct realization. That pre-realization knowledge is the one
that triggers the renouncing of the means to attain this and other worldly


>> And monasticism
>> is obligatory even for the unillumined soul that hankers after
>> emancipation. ... Besides, such means for the realization of the Self as
>> physical and mental control etc. are incompatible with other stages of
>> life."*
>> It seems that Sankara is saying that both jnanis and seekers -- the jnanis
>> because they lack desire and it will be automatic; the second because
>> physical/mental control are not otherwise possible -- must undertake
>> sannyasa. No?
>> On Tue, Apr 9, 2019 at 8:11 AM Bhaskar YR via Advaita-l <
>> advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:

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