[Advaita-l] A shaven face adds to good looks :-)

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Fri Feb 7 01:36:32 EST 2020

In the Prajapati Vidya of the Chandogyopanishat we have an instruction to
Indra and Virochana by Prajapati, as part of Atma Vidya, to look at their
faces in a large vessel of water:

तौ ह प्रजापतिरुवाच साध्वलङ्कृतौ सुवसनौ परिष्कृतौ भूत्वोदशरावेऽवेक्षेथामिति
तौ ह साध्वलङ्कृतौ सुवसनौ परिष्कृतौ भूत्वोदशरावेऽवेक्षाञ्चक्राते तौ ह
प्रजापतिरुवाच किं पश्यथ इति ॥ २ ॥

2. Prajāpati <https://www.wisdomlib.org/definition/prajapati#hinduism> said
to them, ‘After getting well-dressed and putting on fine clothes and making
yourselves neat and clean, then look into the pan of water.’ So the two of
them got well-dressed in fine clothes, and made themselves neat and clean.
Then they looked into the water. Prajāpati asked, ‘What do you see?’.

Shankara, for the word   परिष्कृतौ  ( making yourselves neat and clean)
says: clean, having paring your nails and cutting your hair...

परिष्कृतौ च्छिन्नलोमनखौ च भूत्वा

Surely, this is not a Vedantic instruction; an offshoot of this upadesha
involving what all goes to make a man presentable.  The other elements here
like well dressed in fine clothes, ..alanakaara.. go to show that it is
beautification and shaving is a part of it.

In Upanayanam and Vivaha too there is a vapanam, shaving. Of course, after
the 10th day obsequies, there is vapanam too for the kartaa-s. The element
of good appearance could be a part of this instruction too apart from


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