Saturday, September 13, 2008

Deivathin Kural # 76 of (Vol 2) of 27 Jan 2008.

Om Namah Sivaya.

Deivathin Kural # 76 of (Vol 2) of 27 Jan 2008.

(Note 1. We are to remind the readers that herein, 'he' as a word stands for 'she' as well. When Tamil or Sanskrit words are transliterated in English, the single vowel will indicate a short utterance and a double vowel will indicate a longer pronounciation. Words in Sanskrit script not being available, the transliteration spellings and thereby the pronounciation, especially of names may be at variance from what it should be! I offer my sincere apologies for the likely errors, as the one doing the translation. ---KTSV Sarma. Note 2. It may please be noted that the talk is dated some time in the late 1930's to early 60's.

(Continued from Deivathin Kural # 75 of (Vol 2) of 23 Jan 2008.)

27. In Sankhya the idea of God that stands apart unconnected, unrelated, is called the 'Purusha'. That which organises and runs the whole 'circus' of Maya or Prapancha, is called the 'Prakruti'. Including Prakruti, the Prapancham, is part of the 24Tatvas or Principles, says Sankhyam. Prakruti is the first Tatva, also known as Pradanam. From it comes the 'Mahat' or Macro. Next is the 'Ahankara' the 'I' or the 'Ego'. A sense of being a seperate entity or something! This becomes divided into two, Jeeva having Life and Knowledge or Awareness; and the Insentient Matter of the Body. Jeeva in the body, is further made up of Manas and the Five Gnana Indriyas and Five Karma Indriyas, (ie., Mind and five senses of awareness and five instruments of action.) On the other side of creation, in Jada Prapancham(world of insentient matter), Five Tanmatras(subtle elements) and Five Maha Boothas(of gross Space, Air, Fire, Water and Earth), come into being.

28. Jeeva's Gnana Indriyas (Gnanendriyas), are those that inform him of the outer world, (world is inclusive of this physical body). Eyes that see the world, Ears that hear, Nose that smells, Mouth that tastes, and the Nerve ends all over the skin, that recognises touch; are the five Gnanendriyas. Karmendriyas are those that enable the Jeeva to do actions. In this are included, Hands, Legs, Mouth, Genitals and Anus. Mouth is common between Gnanendriyas and Karmendriyas. Here it enbles the action of speech, verbal expression and singing. Hands are meant for all sorts of action, playing on instruments, making handy crafts, shaping the pot and so on. But the most important of them all, is 'Danam', and 'Dharmam'. 'Danam' is to give to the reciever. 'Dharmam' is to give to the poor! Legs meant for mobility. Sound, Touch, Form, Taste and Smell are the five 'Tanmatras', which are the subtle senses. These are directly related to the gross Maha Buthas of, Akasam / Sky / Space related to Sound; Vayu / Air related to Sound and Touch; Agni / Fire related to Sound, Touch and Form; Appu / Water related to Sound, Touch, Form and Taste; Prithvi / Earth related to Sound, Touch, Form, Taste and Smell. Thus Prakruti, Mahat, Ahankaram, Mind, + five Gnanendriyas + five Karmendriyas + five Tanmatras + five Maha Buthas, total 24 Tatvas.

29. All these 24 Ideas are accepted by Adwaita Vedantam too. The difference lies in the fact that, Adwaita holds that it is Easwara or Saguna Brhmam which is the connecting link between Nirguna Brhmam(the Purusha of Sankhyam) and Maya(Prakruti). Sankhyam is silent about Easwara. Adwaitam and other Vedanta Sampradayas, all accept the three Sattva, Rajo and Tamo gunas, as the three in born characteristics from which people react to situations. Some people are too full of agitation, ferociousness, restlessness, like the carnivorous Tiger or Lion, which is Rajasam. Laziness, sleepishness, procrastination and inertia, charecterise Tamasam. Sattva is the imperturbability of the herbivorous Elephant, majestic in it's memory, solidity and intelligence. Early in Gita, Sri Krishna tells Arjuna to stand firm in Atma, beyond the three gunas, (II.45), "...nisthraigunyo bhava...". This is all, as it is, accepted in Sankhyam too, that these three characteristics should be balanced in cancelling out each other! But Sankhyam does not talk about Easwara, Bakthi, Saranagati, Devotion, Gnana Vichara etc.

30. Purusha is sentient with chaitanyam. Prakruti is insentient or 'Jadam'. So, Prakruti cannot function independently. It's evolving into 24 Tatvas, as given above can happen by Purusha's 'Sannidyam', meaning the, very proximity or presence. But Purusha has nothing to do with all this. He remains a totally unconcerned, 'kevala gnana swarupi'. These are only some of the mutually contradictory statements of Sankhyam. 'Kevalam' in Sanskrit, means 'by itself or pure and unadultrated'. For this word 'Kevalam', the adjective is 'Kaivalyam', the ultimate state of Moksham in Sankhyam! How does the Jeevan is supposed to get rid of the 24 binding concepts, Sankhya does not bother to explain. (Though this word 'Kevalam' has obtained a derogatory meaning of 'only just that much and nothing more!', somehow in Tamil usage, that does not convey the real meaning as meant in Sanskrit.)

31. Of course, the end task for all Jeevas as per other Siddhantas, is also to get rid of all binding attachments, by Karma & or Bakthi & or Surrender & or Gnana Vichara. But Sankhya does not tell you how! It contains more discussion about the 24 Tatvas, which are anyhow to be got rid of, eventually. There is one more major flaw. Purusha (Atma), is the actionless, dutyless, pure, kevala gnana. Prakruti is the 'gnanaless' jadam! How does this inanimate, insentient Jadam, evolve into such varied gross and subtle Tattvas, is a mystery, not explained at all by Sankhyam! You ask them, "How can this be that, when you first say the Purusha is Sentient but actionless, and Prakruti is dynamic but Insentient; and then by the 'Saannidyam' of the first principle alone, the second principle becomes suddenly capable of all this metamorphosis?". Their answer is on the following lines. "Magnet is just there. By it's very being does it not make the iron particles dance? Magnet just has to be there. By it's 'Kevalam' presence Purusha will cause the Prakruti to do all that!" Please bear with me, if I compare this statement, 'to a blind man carrying an immobile man who can see, on his shoulders'. One cannot see, but can walk. Other cannot walk, but can see. That is how, the blind Prakruti has to carry the Purusha of Chaitanya! The explanation falls much short of being satisfactory, giving rise to enormous number of unanswered Questions!

32. Adwaitam at this very point answers to possible doubts most sufficiently. At the absolute condition beyond the mental constructs of Time and Space, is Nirguna Brhmam, untouched by changes, unencumbered by duties and responsibilities. At the relative level, is the Saguna Brhmam, with all the dynamic responsibilities and capabilities, with the necessary instant knwledge and reporting system, capable of not only reacting but proacting! There is one more major incongruity in Sankhyam. It does not say anywhere, that all Jeevatma are one and the same Purusha. It seems many and divergent! Sankhyam comes from the root word, 'Sankya' meaning, counting / census. It suffers from the same problem as do most Statistical data, being capable of varying interpretations!

33. Kapila Maharishi has written the Sutra for Sankhyam. Easwara Krishnar has done the Karikai. Vignana Bikshu has written the Bhashyam. In Bhagawat Gita, Sri Krishna has given much prominence to Sankhya Siddhantam. But when He talks of the two paths of Sankhyam and Yogam, they seem to refer to Gnana and Karma paths respectively. Starting from the point where, Sankhyam just leaves by telling that the Purusha should be seperated from the Prakruti, without telling how; Raja Yoga teaches exactly how to delink from all the 24 Tattvas. This is what is much popular in the Western countries now-a-days, in the name of Patanjali's Rajayoga, with or without taking the name of Patanjali. But Adi Sankara's method is to do so, in a practical way, first by attaining to Chitta Suddhi through all the performance of one's duties, accepting the overall suzerainity of Easwara, through devotional practices, progressively aiming to get to 'Mano Nigraha' tending towards 'Atma Anubhuthi'. I do not want you to go away with the view that I am just too critical of Sankhyam. Though Sankhyam and Yogam are not part of the 14 or 18 Vidya Sthanas, they are very much part of our Sastras. Though Meemamsai does not accept Easwara, it is one of the movements that is within the ambit of what is the Vaidik way of life. So is Sankhyam.

34. Buddhism for it's Ahimsa and the need to overcome Greed and Desire; Nyayam and Meemamsai, that countered the influence and spread of Buddhism; and Sankhyam for its acceptance of Vedas; were all accepted by Adi Sankara; to the extent that they contained acceptable concepts, but were also disputed and countered for the portions that were objectionable. It is interesting to note that, the acceptable concepts in each one of these varied philosophies were those, directly originating in the Vedas only, Such as, the state of 'Nirvana', as in Buddhism; 'Kevalam Gnana Swarupa of the Purusha' as in Sankhyam; 'Prakruti' in the place of Maya with its 24 Tattvas; the Karma Anushtanam, as in Meemamsam; were all accepted. He was critical of each one of them for not progressing further but getting stuck enroute!

Meemamsai and Adi Sankara.

35. That Udayanar and other Nayyayikas criticised Buddhism, for excluding any reference to Easwara or God, had the concurrence of Adi Sankara. Similarly, that Buddhism did not have Vaidik Karma Anushtanas and so was criticised by Kumarila Bhattar and other Meemamsakars, also had the approval of Adi Sankara. Because, Adi Sankara sincerely believed that for Social order and individual 'Chitta Suddhi', Karma Anushtana is essential. But since Meemamsakars were of the view that, 'Easwara as a Phala Dhata is unnecessary, progressing to Gnana through Karma is irrelevant and to leave all Karma and take Sannyasa, is being irresposible; were all objectionable to Acharyal.

36. Kumarila Bhattar and Mandana Mishra, were two important Meemamsakas. Amongst them, Adi Sankara defeated Kumarila Bhatta, in his last few minutes of existance, in arguments. (Refer to Para 19, of Deivathin Kural # 138 of 16 Jan 2007.) Then, Adi Sankara went to Mandana Mishra, won him over in debate and made him one of his four main Sishyas! That Adi Sankara, criticised Meemamsai, which was one of the 14 basic pillars on which the edifice of Vedik Religion was standing, does not mean that He totally disapproved of it. You have to do the Karma Anushtana, but not without devotion to Easwara. By sacrificing all the effects of Karma Anushtana (including even obtaining of Heavens), to Easwara, is the way to get Chitta Suddhi. For this you have to move away from thinking of Karma Phala, as an end in itself, but as a means to an end. For that Devotion to Easwara, the Phala Dhata, is essential! Then, to stop short of the, 'Atmaikya Anubuti' is a blunder, since, any amount of material and worldly benefits will only rekindle the fire of insatiable hunger for more, leading to, Baja Govindam song's, "...punarapi jananam, punarapi maranam, punarapi janani jatare sayanam, iha samsare bahu dustare krupaya pare pahi murare...". That He did not object to Karma, is very clear by His Sopana Panchakam, which He sang just before giving up His mortal coil, "...vedo nityam adheeyataam taduditam karmasu: anushteeyatam...".

(Meemamsai continues for three more e-mails.)




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