[Advaita-l] Fw: Gayatri question - How do you answer this question.?

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at braincells.com
Fri Mar 8 03:01:28 EST 2019

On Thu, 7 Mar 2019, Divya Meedin wrote:

> The scriptures say that Karma Yoga can grant Chitta Shuddhi and put one 
> firmly on the path to enlightenment, one needn't look any further.

In the Mahabharata, there is the story of Dharmavyadha.  As a Shudra 
hunter, he was also an anadhikari for Veda but that does not prevent 
Shankaracharya from giving him as an example of a jnani.

The akhyana actually begins with a different story.  There was a Brahmana 
named Kaushika who was very learned but also bad-tempered.  For instance, 
once he was meditating under a tree when a bird in the branches evacuated 
on him.  He merely looked at it and because of the power of his tapas it 
instantly fell to the ground dead.

Later he went to the nearby village to ask for bhiksha.  At one house, a 
young lady answered him, and learning of his request she excused herself 
and returned to the kitchen.  Some time passed and she did not return so 
Kaushika began getting angrier and angrier.  When she finally returned he 
cursed the unfortunate housewife with full force.  But to his surprise 
nothing happened.  The lady smiled and said "Respected sir, I am sorry for 
keeping you waiting but first I had to feed my husband, in-laws, and 
children.  This is my dharma and because I have tried to practice it 
carefully I was protected from your curse because despite your great 
knowledge you made it while you were consumed by krodha which is a 
violation of your dharma."  On hearing this Kaushika was ashamed and he 
begged the lady to instruct him on sadachara.  She demurred but told him 
to visit Dharmavyadha.

The moral of the story should be clear.  It is the practice of ones 
svadharma which is key.  For some that involves recitation of Gayatri, for 
others it does not.  Which one results in greater benefit depends on the 
fidelity to svadharma nothing else.

That's all I have to say on this topic except one correction. I wrote:

>       Neither does it occur in any of the well-known dharmashastra
>       nibandhas
>       such as chaturvargachintamani, nirnayasindhu,
>       parasharamadhaviyam etc.

But then I wrote:

>       The popular Nirnayasindhu does mention

which is contradictory.  In the first passage I meant Dharmasindhu.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>

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