DEIVATHIN KURAL # 75 (Vol # 5) Dated 31 Oct 2011
DEIVATHIN KURAL # 75 (Vol # 5) Dated 31 Oct 2011
(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavaaL of Kanchi Kaamakoti Peetam, over a period of some 60 years while he was the pontiff in the earlier part of the last century. These have been published by Vanadi Padippagam, Chennai, in seven volumes of a thousand pages each as Deivathin Kural. Today we are proceeding from page No 451 of Vol 5 of the Tamil original. The readers may note that here in 'man/he' includes 'woman/she' too mostly. These e-mails are all available at http://Advaitham.blogspot.com updated constantly)
246. Can this Sankara Avatara also be of Mahavishnu? We observed that his assuming the Samhaara role of Siva was quite appropriate to Kshatriya Dharma. Similarly could it be that he also assumed the role of Gnaana Avatara? There is no doubt that Mahavishnu is also equally a Gnaana Swaroopi. Even if he undertakes a Gnaana Avatara, Siva is not likely to take objections questioning him, “Why My Dear, are you interfering in the responsibility of my department?” Happily watching it, he will also come to assist Mahavishnu. One went as a ‘Bikshaandi’, (that is a beggar Sanyaasi) to beguile the wives of the Rishis by kindling their amorous instincts once and the other joined hands and went to delude and befuddle the Rishis as Mohini Avatara! So also if Vishnu undertook upon himself to take an Avatara to remove the delusion of the common masses and enable them to see the reality also, Siva would have been more than willing to assist. Even the earlier episode ended in opening the eyes of both the Rishis and their wives to Gnaana only. There is such close co-operation between Siva and Vishnu!
247. Still the hesitancy was from Vishnu’s part as to whether he should undertake the Gnaana Upadesa role as much as he had already taken over the role of Samhaara of Siva. The credit for Gnaana Upadesa may continue to remain with Siva, he might have thought. On occasions when necessitated he has amply depicted his near oneness with Siva, in his Avataras such as, Dutta, Rishabha, Nara-NaaraayaNaa, Vyasa and so on and has undertaken the role of Gnaana Guru. Unlike the Dasa Avatara-s, these roles were somewhat subdued, instead of becoming world famous. When he came as ‘Hayagreeva’ often mentioned with the adjective ‘Gnaana Ananda mayam’, he kept it known only to those in the advanced stages of Nivrutti Marga of intense tapasya in Saadhana. With that, traditionally by custom he is invariably mentioned with his wife as ‘Lakshmi Hayagreeva’ only.
248. Generally in common parlance as they say, ‘Siva Gnaanam and Siva Yogam’, nobody says ‘Vishnu Yogam or Vishnu Gnaanam’. Vishnu is rather connected with phrases such as ‘Vishnu Maya or Mayavi (conjurer or illusionist) and play acting Leela Vinodan’. That is how he has kept himself known as. So, now when there was much threat for Dharma and Adharma had become a way of life, and there was a dire need for a fresh Avatara to come down on earth, instead of being as per the Kshatriya Dharma, it had to be cool, calm and serene purely for Gnaana Upadesa from the Siva, thought Maha Vishnu! Some time he will be one with Siva and at other times he will stand apart. The state of oneness of Vishnu and Siva alternates with separateness; depending on their involvement in worldly affairs. During Viswa Roopa Darshan, having said, “pasya me yogam aiswaram”, as being one with Easwara, in the last chapter of Gita, he talks as though they are different entities. He says “easwaraha sarva bhootaanaam hruddeshe Arjuna tishtati I bhraamayan sarva bhootaani yantra roodhaani maayaya II tameva saraNam gachcha”, meaning “Easwara indwells in everybody’s hearts. By the power of Maya he rotates us all like dolls on the giant wheel. Surrender unto him”.
249. Having spoken as though he and Easwara are one and the same, here he uses the phrase, ‘tameva saraNam gachcha’ meaning ‘surrender unto him’! He also does not let us think of them as two different entities either! In the chapter on Vibhuti Yoga, he had said, ‘I am the Aatma among all living things’. Quote – “aham aatma gudaakesa sarva bhootaasaya stitaha” – Unquote! Both the words ‘aasayam and hrudayam’ means the same thing, the heart. Where he says that Easwara is the indwelling reality in everybody’s heart, by saying that he plays around with us like dolls on a giant cart wheel, he is attributing his Maya oriented jobs to Easwara.
250. Here having told Arjuna to surrender to Easwara itself, just four slokas later completing his Upadesa says, ‘surrender unto me only’ that is, “maam ekam saraNam vraja”! If we object as to why he is repeatedly changing tunes, he will say, “I am not changing anything! When I say, ‘maam ekam’ it means that I am the only one. Then where is Siva as different from me? We are not different but one and the same thing, the one and only Paramaatma! For the sake of practicality and fun sake, we seem as though two different entities”.
251. So thus, when we see them as two different entities, it is Easwara who grants Gnaana mainly. As we say, ‘for this and this go to so and so God’, like for health we should approach the Sun, for Gnaana we are to go to Easwara only; ‘aarogyam baaskaraat – ichchet gnaana – daataa maheswaraha’. It is Gnaana which gives eternal Moksham. When in the end he told us, ‘surrender only unto me’, he left it saying that he will relieve us of all our sins. But before that when he said, ‘surrender unto Easwara’, he also said that, ‘by his grace you will attain to total clarity, peaceful and eternal status of oneness with existence’. That status is the Moksham through Gnaanam, is the meaning of the statement, “tat prasaadaat paraam shaantim sthaanam praapsyasi shaasvatam”. Having shown himself to be Easwara and depicted Samhaara (that normally is the job of Rudra) as his own, in the end talking about DakshiNa Murthy’s work of granting Gnaana Moksha as ‘his job’ as though he is different slightly. Now when 72 irreligious religions were predominant, he must have thought that this job should preferably be done by the one meant to do this. But his statement, ‘sambhavaami yuge yuge’, makes it look that after all is said and done Mahavishnu and Siva are one and the same!
252. “To take an Avatara for Gnaana one does not have to be dressed with all these paraphernalia of Kireetam, Kundalam, Koustubham and Peetaambaram, (that is crown, ear rings, garland and yellow silken clothes, that is normally adorn Vishnu’s visage), as though running a Kings’ court. It would be preferable to be simply dressed sitting under a banyan tree, closing one’s eyes in dhyana would be more suitable. After all, I have taken so many Avataras while Siva is sitting unconcerned, because of which there is an adage, ‘to be sitting quietly like Siva’! Let him do whatever has to be done. If required I shall go to his assistance as a disciple of his.” That must have been Vishnu’s analysis of the situation. True to it, out of the four important disciples of Sankara Avatara, our AachaaryaaL, Padmapaada is said to be Mahavishnu’s Amsa in Sankara Vijayam books.
253. Paramasiva has names such as, ‘Easaana, Sadasiva, and Easwara’ and many more. In the Sruti (Vedas) itself it is said, “For all Vidyas the deity is Easaana, for all living things he is the Easwara. Let him be good and beneficial to me”, as given in Maha NaaraayaNa Upanishad. The Upanishad finishes by saying ‘that Sadasiva is to be understood and inhered as the inalienable inner self in all of us living beings’. That is the reality to be absorbed deep in our selves. That very phrase has been re-used here in Bhagawat Gita when Krishna says in 61st Sloka of the 18th chapter “Easwara: sarva bhootaanaam”. Since he is the Head of all Vidyas (teachers, lecturers, and professors of all sorts of education), it is in the rightness of things for him be the Avatara as the Upadesa Guru. In various Tantra and Mantra Saastraas and special devotional procedures for Japa, Tapa and Upakyaanaas too, it will be found that Parama Siva is the Upadesa Guru and AmbaaL is the recipient disciple.
254. Out of all these Vidyas the topmost, the foremost is the Adwaita Vidya. That vidya is not just a book or mantra. It is the end experience not with the five senses, mind or body; but by the inner awareness of the self! That is the truest experience of oneself in the being. Experience of incomparable uniqueness is specifically pointed out as the Sivam. Like the Maha Vaakya ‘aham brhma asmi’, which means, ‘I am Brhmam’ while meditating, there is another ‘sivoham’, which means, ‘I am Siva’ on which you can meditate! In Maandookhya Upanishad it clearly says, ‘sivam adwaitam’. So, it is absolutely correct that the Aachaarya Purusha for Adwaita Vedantam is an Avatara of Siva. A Guru should be an all knowing ‘Sarvagna’. Parama Siva has been described thus in the Sanskrit dictionary cum encyclopaedia Amara kosa as “krusaanureta sarvagyo doorjatir neela lohita:”
255. It is alright, what other books say about Parama Siva as an Aachaarya for Aatma Gnaana of Adwaitam. What did our AachaaryaaL say about this? His words have special value, isn’t it? What has he said in answer to questions such as, ‘Who is the Guru and who gives Gnaana?’ He has raised these questions and answered them in ‘Prasna Uttara Maalika’. There is one question there on who is called a Jagat Guru, ‘ko hi jagat guru ukta:’? The moment we say ‘Jagat Guru’, we think of Sankara AachaaryaL only. Earlier than him, the one who got that title is Krishna Bhagawan. There is an Ashtakam on him with eight slokas, all of them finishing with ‘krishnam vande jagat gurum’!
256. Here having asked the question as to who is said to be the Jagat Guru, what answer does our AachaaryaaL give? He says, “Sambhu:” which means the same as Sankara. Re-emphasising this is the next question and answer. “Gnaanam Kuta:?” ‘Gnaana is obtained from whom?’ Answer – “Sivaadeva”, which is ‘Sivaad eva’, meaning ‘from Siva only’. I hope it is clear that the Avatara for Gnaana had to be from Siva. To sum up, by the decision of Paramaatma, as there had been a number of Avataras by his one form as Mahavishnu, now there had to be one from Parameswara, his other form!
(To be continued.)
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