Wednesday, October 31, 2012

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 76 (Vol # 6) Dated 31 Oct 2012

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 76 (Vol # 6) Dated 31 Oct 2012

(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 going ahead from the middle of page No 518 of Volume 6 of the Tamil original. The readers may note that herein ‘man/he’ includes ‘woman/she’ too mostly. These e-mails are all available at updated constantly)

421.  At the end of last e-mail No. 75, we had promised that we will tell you as to where in the Vedas, it is given that in the path of Gnaana too Bhakti has an important role to play.  That is the ‘Kaivalya Upanishad’ in Krishna Yajur Veda in which in the very second sloka, at the start of his Upadesa, Brhma tells Asvalayana an aspirant, “श्रद्धा भक्ति ध्यान योगादवैहि”, meaning that ‘you may attain to Gnaana by an effort which makes use of a combination of faith, devotion, meditation and practice.  Using the same words of the Sruti, here our AachaaryaaL too has commenced his Sloka No 46 in Viveka ChudamaNi with the words, “श्रद्धा भक्ति ध्यान योगान्”.

In the Sutra Bhashyam Also

422.  Not only in ‘Viveka ChudamaNi’, has our AachaaryaaL recommended that Bhakti should be included in the approach of Gnaana Marga, but also in the very Brhma Sutra Bhashyam itself, he has said so!  The reason for my emphasizing, that he has said so in the ‘Brhma Sutra Bhashyam itself’, is that between an enormous volume of his creations namely Prasthana Thrayee, that is Bhashyam for Brhma Sutra, ten important Upanishads and Bhagawat Gita; a number of PrakaraNa Granthas such as Viveka ChudamaNi, Aparoksha Anubhuti,  Aatma Bodha:, Tattva Bodha: and so on; and Slokas and Stotras on all deities of places, temples, rivers that he visited;  there is a FAQ as to if all of them have been written by Sankara AachaaryaaL or by somebody else of that name!   So as to avoid that question, I am saying that in He has emphasized the value of Bhakti in Gnaana Marga, in his ‘Brhma Sutra Bhashyam itself’, as there can be no doubt about the fact that he wrote it!  Also, that book is like a magnum opus of his and so its authoritative value is more.
423.  In Brhma Sutra (III.2.24) the tool for Brhma Anubhava is known as ‘Samaraadhanam’.  This word has the same meaning as ‘aaraadanam or aaraadanai’ which means ‘to worship’.  So it is part of devotional procedures.  Here it is the inexorable love that the aspirant has for the Self, which is the subject, as well as the object of love!  There is a Tamil word ‘கடவுள்’ pronounced as ‘KadavuL’ for God, which brings out clearly that, he is an entity beyond the ‘Kada’ the farthest and also ‘vuL’, as the inner of the innermost! So as you reach for Him the God, you are digging deep inside also with love and that is devotion!  So, our AachaaryaaL while enlarging on the idea of ‘Samaraadhanam’, is saying that ‘भक्ति-ध्यान-प्रणिदानादि अनुष्टानं’.  ‘प्रणिदानादिmeans that by ‘Samadhi’ and ‘Samaadhaana’, to completely integrate and focus.  Normally if we are asked as to how to do Dhyaana for Brhma Anubhava we would think of bringing the whole of Antah KaraNam together and concentrate and focus in Dhyaana.  But here our AachaaryaaL, by putting Bhakti first and Dhyaana after that has exhorted us to integrate these two approaches, mutually reinforcing the two to get to the end result! 
424.  Like Aradhana, Upasana is also a word for worshipping the God in the SaguNa form only as mentioned in Veda, Saastra, PuraaNa and Itihaasaas.  So what we are referring as Karma-Bhakti-Gnaana would be mentioned by people well-versed in Saastraas as Karma-Upaasana-Gnaana only. In Brhma Sutra (IV.1.1) it is mentioned that a person after receiving the Upadesa should be repeatedly mulling over it till it is firmly imbedded in his Antah KaraNam.  Here in the main text there is no mention of Upaasana with devotion or Gnaana Saadhana using Buddhi and intellect.  Just simply it is said that we should be ruminating and deliberating on the idea.  But by reference to the context, by the message given in the Sutra-s before this and after; we can make out that it is about the Manana that the Sanyaasi has to do after receiving the Maha Vaakhya Upadesa of Gnaana Marga, (and this has been so clarified by our AachaaryaaL here, in his Bhashyam).  Then on his own in connection with this Sutra, he goes on to quote references from within the Brhma Sutra where, he relates how the path of devotion as well as knowledge goes hand in hand.
425.  The Upadesa after being heard (SravaNam) has to be repeatedly mulled, ruminated and deliberated upon till it’s meaning has been comprehended; and then to delve deeply in that meaning is Dhyaanam as we know. Similarly when the disciple is totally attentive of the Guru’s words, his every wish, nuances in meanings and implications, Guru’s physical comforts and well-being; we call it Upaasana of the Guru. So also when a citizen is so devoted to the King we call it Raja Upaasana and when a wife takes care of a husband it is known as Pati Upaasana. Thus as indicated by our AachaaryaaL, the highest of Bhakti Bhaava-s are Aatma Nivedanam, Daasya Bhavam and Maadhuryam.  Thus in the Upanishad-s learning, knowing and comprehending, have not been kept apart from Upaasana for which our AachaaryaaL has quoted and given examples.  (The first Drushtaantam (example) is at Chandokya Upanishad IV.1.4; iv.2.2. and the second example at Chandokya Upanishad III.18.1 and III.18.3.)
426.  The first example is about what I have been elaborating for some time now, that is, the target or the goal in Aatma Anusandaanam instead of being perceived only as a dry principle has to be seen as living entity and the approach to it should be full of love and prema.  The story is like this.  About a Gnaani Raigrava two swans are discussing among themselves.  One bird tells the other, “All that anybody knows anywhere is only a part of what he knows!”  Thus praising him the bird is flying off in the sky.  From this we can make out that Raigrava is a Brhma Gnaani, for even a bird to know that he knows!  What the bird says is called வாலறிவு in Tamil that is Omniscience in English.   A king by name Janasruti, sleeping in the roof top pent house happens to hear what the bird says while flying.  (You may note here that the king has a name which means, ‘Knower of the Vedas’!  So in future, do not ask ‘What is in a name?’) 
427.  That king Janasruti wishes to meet that Brhma Gnaani Raigrava.  Here comes our topic.  He goes to Raigrava to ask for the Gnaana Tattva to be given as Upadesa to himself.  Having come face to face with Raigrava, instead of asking for the Gnaana Tattva, he says, “My respectable Sir, Please give me Upadesa about the deity that you are devoted to”.  That is, the Dhyaana which in Brhma Vidya tradition is mentioned as ‘Tattva Vichaaram, Sodanam and Anusandaanam et al’, should all be done with the attitude or Bhava in a very similar way as it would be done by a servant to a master, or a disciple to a Guru or a devotee to God in SaguNa form’!  That the Upanishad is saying so, our AachaaryaaL affirms and enlightens us, to some extent going out of his way to do so!
428.  Even in places where our AachaaryaaL has to elaborately explain the nuances of words and meanings of phrases, you will never see him being verbose.  Vinobha Bhave has also commented that our AachaaryaaL never does unnecessary enlargements and beating around the bush.  Brhma Sutra itself is a compendium of terse statements.  Our AachaaryaaL’s Bhashyam-s are also brief and up to the point mostly.  So now here, if he seems to be going out of his way to make a point, we can discern that he sees it as very important, isn’t it?  But as a protector of traditional value systems, he may not have wanted to enlarge too much on the subject of ‘Bhakti in Adwaita’; there by confuse people who are not very conversant with terms and meanings, he may have wished to leave it the Gurus to explain things as and when required to their disciples.   Still, at the end of his instructions, (as given in Taitreeya Upanishad (I.xi.4.) एष आदेश:, एष उपदेश:, एतत् अनुसासनं), when he endowed us with Viveka ChudamaNi, he did openly declare that Bhakti is an important tool in the hands of the Saadhak, as I have already quoted to you about ‘moksha kaaraNa saamagryaam bhaktireva gareeyasi’ – मोक्ष कारण सामग्र्यां भक्तिरेव गरीयसी”.

கண்ணன் காட்டும் ஞானமேயான பக்தி
Devotion & Gnaanam Are Synonyms as Shown by Sri Krishna

429.  Instead of saying that Bhakti is an important tool in the path of Gnaana, Sri Krishna has gone further higher to prove the point that the highest level of Bhakti is Gnaana and the highest level of Gnaana is Bhakti.  (The readers may remember the introduction to Baja Govindam as sung by M.S.Subbulakshmi by Raja Gopala Aachaariyaar the last Governor General of India, when he says that, “At the end levels Bhakti is Gnaanam and Gnaanam is Bhakti”!)  Sri Krishna, in the Bhagawat Gita (Chapter VII.16.), classifies the devotees in to four types namely, ‘आर्तो जिज्ञासु अर्थार्थी ज्ञानी’.  Amongst them the ‘आर्तो are the down trodden sufferers, ‘जिज्ञासु’ are those desirous of obtaining Gnaana, ‘अर्थार्थी’ are those wishing to get material and last are the ‘ज्ञानी’ who are the Gnaani-s.  Though the order he has listed them is not as per their level of spiritual progress, possibly he has serialised them more to suit the rhyme and rhythm of poetry, placing the ‘Jignaasu’ earlier than ‘Arthaarthi’.  We are not much concerned with that.  But, the point to notice is that, the highest Bhakta is a Gnaani!  So that nobody may misinterpret this to mean that the Gnaani is still member of duality, he has put a full stop to his statement after saying in the very next sloka that he is ‘एकभक्तिर्’ followed by the next one ‘ज्ञानी त्वात्मैव’, that he is verily myself!
430.  Later in the 12 Chapter, (Slokas 14 to 20) in Bhakti Yoga, as he expounds on Dwaita Upaasana, he showers encomiums of praise on the devotee that he is very close to him saying स मे प्रिय:, repeatedly.  So it is clear that in the earlier Seventh Chapter the Gnaani mentioned is very much from the path of Adwaita Gnaana, since he is not just very dear to me only, but verily myself!

(To be continued.)




Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home