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shrI Shankara charitam: exposition by KAnchi ParamAchArya

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Disclaimer for my Translated Materials

These selective English translations done by me from the Tamil book Deivatthin Kural (7 volumes), compiled from the upanyAsams--lectures, of KAnchi ParamAchArya by his mahAbhakta shrI RA.GaNapati and published by the VAnati Padhippakam, Chennai, are posted here with the sole intention of carrying the divine messages of the AchAryALs of the Shankara MaThams established by Sri Adi Shankara BhagavadpAda, so that we the members and readers of this Forum can understand and practice the directions contained in the messages.

As a translator, I have no commercial interests or financial considerations in spreading the messages of our Gurus, and have no claims of copyright for the translations.

I have duly quoted the source of these translations, and I hereby acknowledge the credits to the publications, authors, devotees and any other people concerned.

If anyone involved with these publications has any reservations on the implicit consents and permissions assumed in these translations for the spiritual benefit of Hindus and the mankind, the same may be brought to the notice of the Forum Administrator, for necessary changes or removal of the material presented.

'saidevo', as translator of the materials presented.

*** *** ***

An amazing accomplishment of KAnchi ParamAchArya's upanyAsams--lecturers, is his elaborate teaching of the tough, difficult and lofty philosophy of the Vedas and UpaniShads of SanAtana Dharma, in a way that the common man can understand and be inspired by it, and at the same time, enlightening and motivating those who have a deeper knowledge. With his sama-dRShTi--impartial outlook, ParamAchArya reconciles all the sectoral siddhAnta of our religion, explains the nature of the final goal of ultimate liberation of our Vedas and UpaniShads, and indicates to what extent the different siddhAnta define the path towards its accomplisthment.

ParamAchArya's upanyAsam on the life and works of shrI Adi Shankara BhagavadpAda, explaining the background and all the relevant circumstances that necessitated the advent of the avatAra of God DakShiNamUrti in human form, runs to over 800 pages in printed form, under the section titled 'shrI Shankara Charitam' in volume 5 of the book 'Deivatthin Kural'. Those who not possess the printed volumes, can read it online at the Website of KAnchi Shankara MaTham at Tamil Content : kamakoti.org: . Details of an English translation of the seven volumes of the book brought out by 'Sri Kanchi Mahaswami Peetarohana Shatabdi Mahotsav Trust' are published their Website at srikanchimahaswami100.org .

My attempt at this English translation of 'shrI Shankara Charitam' is meant mainly to express my lifelong gratitude towards our Jagadgurus of Shankara MaThams, besides my desire to share the drops of blissful experiences obtained from reading it. Although I know that I can do only selective translation, I pray to BhagavAn and the Gurus to give me their anugraham for strength and efficacy to be able to do it completely, and to the satisfaction of its readers who have read/not read the original.
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Two thousand, two thousand and five hundred years ago, the condition of our desham--country, had extremely deteriorated.

Since anAdi kAlam--eternity, the vedokta--Vedas-sanctioned, path has been prevailing in our desham. Its name is SanAtana Dharma. Since it arose in anusaraNam--conformity with, the Vedas, it can also be called the vaidika matam--Vedic Religion. Only bahu kAlam--several millennia, later, did the people of anya desham--foreign countries, gave it the name Hindu Matam, and we are using only the name they gave it. It is not even mentioned in the books that are the basis of our matam--religion, that the name for it is SanAtana Dharma or vaidika matam. Since there were no other religions and only this single matam was prevailing from eternity, there was no avashyam--necessity, to give it a name. Later, those who came from the western countries, since they had to pass the Sindhu nadI first in our BhArata desham, making Indus of the (name) Sindhu, they gave the name India to the BhArata desham that had its territory therefrom, and started calling its matam--religion, that came prAchInam--from ancient times, Hinduism, and all of us who follow it Hindus, and these names have prevailed.

In this SanAtana Dharma systematized by the Vedas, two mArgas--paths: the pravRtti mArga, and the nivRtti mArga.

• To conduct life in this lokam--world, well and in accordance with Dharma, the pravRtti mArga.

• To let go the worldly life, and on completing it (at death), to come in aikyam--unity, with ParamAtmA and get liberated from the janana-maraNam--birth and death, the nivRtti mArga.

• To live in accordance with Dharma, that is, to conduct the household life as per Vedic regulations so as to bring good to oneself and good to the jana samUham--community, and do the karmAnuShTAnams--prescribed duties, in anusaraNam--conformity, with the varNAshrama vyavastas--bounds of the occupational class system, is the pravRtti mArga.

• In this mArga, we obtain puNyam--good karma, to the extent we do our karmAnuShTAna well, and due to that puNya phala--fruits of good karma, obtain vAsam--residence, in the inba lokam--pleasure world, of svargam--heaven.

• But then that pleasure is not shAshvatam--perpetual. As we go on experiencing the pleasure, our puNya balance would become lesser and lesser. After it is exhausted, 'punarapi jananam'--back again to birth, as it is said, to be born again on this earth.

• Still, as we lived according to the Veda Dharma (in the pUrva janmam--earlier birth), this would be a good birth that obtains good facilities. If the life is led without failing in Dharma in this life too, again the svaga bhogam--heavenly enjoyment. But then as said (earlier), this bhogam--enjoyment, is not shAshvatam--eternal.

• That it is not shAshvatam is on one side. With that, even while enjoying it, this pleasure will not be one that gives us pUrNa tRpti--complete satisfaction. "Nothing further is required! Has not this state been obtained in nirantaram--perpetually? There is nothing to move away from this, even slightly. There is no further need for us."--Only when one can become such, only then, the tRpta pUrNAnandam.

However much santoSham--happiness, is there in these two, bhUlokam--world of earth, and svargam--heaven, it cannot give such fulfilment of Anandam--bliss. One cannot be in these lokas--worlds, without the various kinds of bhayam--fear, duHkham--sorrow, and the izhupaRigaL--unsettling condition, of kAma-krodhAdi--desire, anger, etc. To obtain these pleasures, one should be making incessant efforts too. That is, one should keep on struggling.

• Not only that. Will these pleasures satisfy what we are in our inner depths? Never. Except that somehow there will be a pleasant experience to the eye, ear, mouth, and other sparshAdi--tactile senses, to the manas--mind, even to the buddhi--intellect, there won't be even some slight sukhAnubhavam--comfortable experience, in these (pleasures) to the AtmA, which is resident beyond all these, and beyond our antaHkaraNa--inner organs too.

Even to us while experiencing the pleasures, from time to time when some dIrgha yojana--deep thought, comes up, it would seem, "What is this? Without obtaining any fulfilment for that something that sits inside us as sArabhUtam--excellent thing, we continue to seek at the outer level something that is asthiram--impermanent, as saukhyam--comfort, inbam--pleasure, do whatever (to have them) and seem to get satisfied with them?"

• That which gives complete inner satisfaction is only the nivRtti mArgam. Only the man who gives up karmas--labour and activity, gives up the jana samUham--community, becomes sannyAsi--ascetic, and remains sadA-sarva-kAlam--at all times, in Atma-chitana--thinking about the AtmA, doing dhyAnam--meditation, would get into the state of complete fulfilment that lets him know and experience that the AtmA is nothing but Brahmam.

Only that state which is called samAdhi and sAkShAtkAram--Self-Realization, is one that remains shAsvatam--permanent, once it is obtained. Even in normal conversation, we say, "it was brahmAnandam!", about an experience of happiness that is known to us. In vAstavam--truth, however, that 'brahmAnandam' would be known only the man who has got siddhi--personal success, in the nivRtti mArgam!

• It is not the feeling of bliss that someone experiences about something else as Brahmam. The bliss that he is the brahmam is the brahmAnandam. This one (who has got siddhi in the nivRtti mArgam) himself becomes that Anandam that is called brahmam. Only there, there is no bhayam--fear, no duHkham--sorrow, and the unsettling condition of kAmam--desire, and krodham--anger; and no incessant efforts are required.

• One should work hard before he gets the siddhi. I said struggle, and it would perforce be a great one. But once that lakShyam--target, is reached, there is no sliding down from it.

What is said as

தில்லை வெளியிலே கலந்து விட்டாலவர்
திரும்பியும் வருவாரோ?

tillai veLiyilE kala~ndu viTTAlavar
tirumbiyum varuvArO?
--SubrahmaNya BhArati

"Once they merge with the space of Thillai (Chidambaram), will they ever return?"

is only this. And what Brahma SUtram has ended, with two times instead of one, as

अनावृत्तिः शब्दाद् अनावृत्तिः शब्दाद् ॥४.४.२३॥

anAvRuttiH shabdAd anAvRuttiH shabdAd ||4.4.23||

"No return (for those liberated souls) on account of the scriptural statement (to that effect)."--svAmi ShivAnanda

only says this. The brahmasUtrakAra--author of BS, says, "This is not what I have said; it is in the shruti--Vedas." 'shabdAd' means 'from the shruti which is the shabda pramANam'.

The ChAndogya upaniShad which is the shruti shiras--crest of Vedas, also ends saying it twice in this way.

Therefore, the nitya pErinbam--permanent Heavenly Bliss, is obtained only by the nivRtti mArgam. All that is obtained in pravRtti (mArgam) is only the chiRtRinbam--earthly pleasures, which is nashvara--perishable.
Two paths, for two kinds of people
Still, in the drama that IshvAra enacts as lokam, prajAs--world and people, if it is said, "Become a sannyAsi--ascetic; go to the jungle and hold your nose (to control breathing); in addition, do the vichAraNam--inquiry, of AtmA and get soaked in it", most people are not such, as to listen to it. The tApam--burning desire, of getting to know that the reason for everything is the vastu--reality, brahmam, and then getting to know, that which is brahmam is the individual AtmA, does not arise in most people.

• The name for this tApam is mumukShutvam. The desire to get liberated is mumukShutvam. One who has that desire is the mumukShu. What I spoke about as nivRtti mArgam so far is only what is generally called the jnAna mArgam. Only the mumukShus are the adhikArins--authorized people, who has the yogyatA--fitness/ability, to traverse that path. In the population, they would be very less in number.

• The other people would always be indulging in some kAryam--task. Without external upakaraNas--instruments, and other people, there will be no kAryam. Keeping all these things and doing something or other is the svabhAvam--natural disposition, of the majority of people. About these people who are attached to their karma--action, BhagavAn has spoken of as "karma sangis"--"attached to action", (see note 01) in the GItA.

As to why these people are always at karma--action, they have verious kinds of desires; if they need to get them fulfilled, they also need to do something, toiling and tricking other people? If we sit silently, would the vastu--article, we are desirous of getting, fall in our hands on its own accord?

Except that we need to just sit silently to reach the AtmA that always remains with us as svayam chittam--Self-shining, without the need of its being obtained from outside, for any other thing that we need, we have to indulge in some action.

The very fact of saying it this way means that with every action we move further and further outward from the AtmA. (The term) 'pra-vRtti' itself means only that: "to keep going outward".

The opposite term for this is 'ni-vRtti'. What is the opposite of going outward? Is it not to return the place of habitation? 'To return' is 'ni-vRtti'; to return to the AtmA.

'To be indulging in action' for pravRtti and 'to have a full stop to action and stay silent' for nivRtti are (the derived) meanings that are in vogue.

If the majority of people would be of the nature of going outward in action, can they be compelled saying, "No, you shouldn't be going outward; simply sit quietly and do Atma vichAram--Self inquiry."? Even if it is done, when on their own accord they don't have that desire, the desire called mumukShutvam--the only desire of reaching the satya vastu after all the worldly desires are gone,--what fruits will be there?

sari--Alright, should they be left as they are? If that be the case, everyone for his durAshas--bad desires/vain expectations, would be cheating, and spoiling the life of others and thus the whole world would be disrupted? For Ishvara, this lokam--world, instead of being a rasavata nATakam--drama filled with Rasas (see note 02), would become an alangkOla kUththu--revelry of disorderliness? What can be done therefore?

• It is for this purpose that the Veda has planned as the prvRtti mArgam, the karma mArgam which prescribes actions that are dharma-mayam--filled with dharma, for one who goes in pravRtti, in accordance with his propensity; and

as nivRtti mArgam, the jnAna mArgam for one who gives up all action and wants to restrain and shrink himself in the actionless AtmA.

What is the meaning if it is said that the Veda has planned? The meaning is only that Ishvara, who is himself veda mantra svarUpam--the form of Veda mantras, planned it through the Rishis.

Both these kinds of prajAs--children, have only originated from Him? It's his duty to plan a good marga--path, for them? If the majority of people are karma sangis--attached to action, only he has made them to be as such!
Where it is said as

yataH pravRuttirbhUtAnAM yena sarvamidaM tatam

in the GItA (see note 03), it is advised in spaShTam--for clear perception, that by whom all these are in vyApakam--pervaded, from that same Ishvara, the pravRtti has arisen for the jIvas. Making it more spaShTam in his bhAShyam--commentary, AchAryAL has stated that Ishvara, sitting as antaryAmin--inner regulator, inside a jIva, makes him indulge in pravRtti.

• Initially, in the adhyAyas--chapters, that start with the 'karma yogam' (in the GItA), Bhagavan was saying that the reason for the people to be karma sangis (that is, being interested in pravRtti), was only prakRti--Nature. And prakRti is only mAyA.

• Right, if it is mAyA, does it do anything on its own accord? Only Ishvara remains as one who has even that mAyA, as its yajamAna--patron. One UpaniShad says, "Know that prakRti is only mAyA. Know that the owner of that mAyA, mAyA's yajamAnan, is Mahesvara." (see note 04). BhagavAn also has said in GItA (7.14), "mama mAyA duratyayA"--"my mAyA which is impassable".

Thus it is known that only Ishvara, to have his mAyA-lIlA staged, has made the karma sangis who go outward in pravRtti, as such. If all the jIvas go in nivRtti what will happen? They would get aikyam--merged, in Ishvara's nirguNa brahma svarUpam, breaking out the mAyA. Then how can He be in santoSham--happiness, enacting his drama of prapancha lIlA?

• We see in the BhAgavatam, that as the SanakAdis (Rishis starting with Sanaka) who appeared first in the sRShTi--Creation, had gone in nivRtti, then BrahmA created as PrajApatis, ten Rishis starting with MarIchi, in order that they would beget a number of children and fill up the bhUmi--earth.

Therefore, it is known that the divya saMkalpam--Divine Will, itself is that the entire lokam--world, as jnAnis should not leave the world, making his drama stage empty and ruined.

Still, for that can he let all those who act in the drama act as they please without any discipline or order?

In order that it does not happen, Ishvara has revealed the pravRtti mArgam through the Vedas, thinking with parama kRupa--supreme compassion,

"Although these people go in pravRtti, with the small amount of svAtantrayam--freedome of the will, I have given them for my own amusement, I should not let them do it all haphazardly as they like, making the overall social life disorderly. I should not also let them as individual prajas--children, overly commit mistakes and get stuck in pApam--sin.

"Without being a drama, all of it should not go as brahmam; the drama should not be all confusion too; should not let them suffer in pApam with overly commitment of mistakes. Although it is certain that there would be no nityAnandam--eternal happiness, by karma--action, I should not let the people get immersed in afflictions even without the temporary bhoga bhoyAdi Anandam--happiness of enjoyments, obtained by doing that karma as puNya karma--meritorious acts. Individual life or samUha--societal life, whatever, I should give them a path where there is discipline, love, beauty, paraspara sahAyam--mutual assistance,--(path of) dharma to put it all in a single word."

• He gave a path where everyone would go on doing satkaryAs--good acts, in accordance with the status Ishvara has made them born in, geting shreyas--excellence, for them in this world, and making the world kShemam--prosperous, and obtain santoSham--happiness, in the svargAdi puNya lokas--heavely worlds of merit. The bhAgam--part, of this in the Vedas is named Karma KANDam. All the yajna karmAnuShTAnas--sacrficial and other rites, restraints and rigours, are those that are comprised in this.

• He gave a path as nivRtti mArgam for mokSha siddhi, in that same Vedas, through the UpaniShads that form the concluding part. It has the name JnAna KANDam. There will be much of tattvopadesham--teaching of realities, therein.

MokSham is different, Svargam is different. Only MokSham is the sthAnam--position, that gives nirantara--permanent, liberation from samsAram--worldly life. Svargam depends on the amount of puNyam, and lasts only until the time it is spent. It is a lokam--world, that only gives various kinds of indriya inbam--sensual pleasures.

01. Bhagavad GItA 3.26

न बुद्धिभेदं जनयेदज्ञानां कर्मसङिनाम् ।
जोषयेत्सर्वकर्माणि विद्वान्युक्तः समाचरन् ॥३.२६॥

na buddhibhedaM janayedaj~jAnAM karmasa~ginAm |
joShayetsarvakarmANi vidvAnyuktaH samAcharan ||3.26||

From Shankara's GItA BhAShya, translated by Swami Gambhirananda:

3.26 The enlightened man should not create disturbance in the beliefs of the ignorant, who are attached to work. Working, while himself remaining deligent [Some translate yuktah as, 'in the right manner'. S. takes it in the sense of Yoga yuktah, merged in yoga.-Tr.], he should make them do [Another reading is yojayet, meaning the same as josayet.-Tr.] all the duties.

02. rasas

The nava rasas--nine kinds of feelings/sentiments/moods that might prevail, e.g., in a stage dance like the bharata nATyam, are: shRungAraM--love, hAsyam--laughter, raudram--fury, kAruNyam--compassion, bIbhatsaM--disguest, bhayAnakam--horror/terror, vIram--heroic mood, adbhutaM--wonder. To these eight rasas, Abhinavagupta added shAntam--peace/tranquility, making it nine in all.

Two rasas were later added to the list: vAtsalya--parental love, bhakti--spiritual devotion. For more details, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rasa_(aesthetics)

03. Bhagavad GItA 18.46

यतः प्रवृत्तिर्भूतानां येन सर्वमिदं ततम् ।
स्वकर्मणा तमभ्यर्च्य सिद्धिं विन्दति मानवः ॥१८.४६॥

yataH pravRuttirbhUtAnAM yena sarvamidaM tatam |
svakarmaNA tamabhyarchya siddhiM vindati mAnavaH ||18.46||

18.46 A human being achieves success by adoring through his own duties Him from whom is the origin of creatures, and by whom is all this pervaded.
--shankara bhAShya, GambhIrAnanda

04. shvetAshvatara upaniShad 4.10

मायां तु प्रकृतिं विद्यान्मायिनं तु महेश्वरम् ।
तस्यवयवभूतैस्तु व्याप्तं सर्वमिदं जगत् ॥४.१०॥

mAyAM tu prakRutiM vidyAnmAyinaM tu maheshvaram |
tasyavayavabhUtaistu vyAptaM sarvamidaM jagat ||4.10||

IV-10: Know then that Nature is Maya, and that the great God is the Lord of Maya. The whole world is filled with beings who form His parts.
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Excellent posting yesterday and today., apart from the mammoth job separately done.
I would request you to kindly see my posting on Atman today in a new thread and also read through the relevant pages of my book on the Glory of Vishnusahasranamam.
Regards and respects,
Two kinds of fruits of the karma mArgam
A big visheSham--speciality/distinction, of the karma mArgam that Ishvara has planned for us through the Vedas is that:

I said (earlier) that very often we have a yojana--deep thought, "What is this we are doing without any rest or stop! It only seems to us that by this activity, something inside us remains without getting filled up, and it's as if we experience only a superficial alpa sukham--trivial pleasure, that is quickly exhausted?" Although such a thought arises, our habitual vAsana--impression, immediately pushes it down, without letting it grow into some good virakti--freedom from attachment, and vairAgyam--dislike/non-attachment. We are happy, falling again and again in the same pool of mud--as 'pazhaiya kuruDi'(see note 01) and feeling good about it.

If any death or a great loss comes by, only for that duration, we who always indulge in kAryam--action, perhaps because we can't do anything with this, would remain as if we have some vairAgyam. They say prasava vairAgyam--perseverence in labour, shmashAna vairAgyam--perseverence at the cremation ground. But even that gets carried away like writing on the water surface. In this way, little by little if we go on experiencing hardships, by that experience some pakvam--ripeness/maturity, would arise in us.

Even in that stage, it is such that we can't give up our karma-action. AtmA--brahmam--jnAnam thus doing dhyAna-vichArAdi--meditation and inquiry, sitting in ekAntam--solitude,--that yogyatA--fitness/ability, would not have arisen in us. Still, the thought 'would be better if that yogyatA arises someday' would have been created in the foothills (of mind).

Although the pravRtti of the mind (I use the word in the meaning 'the propensity of mind') is only in kAryams--actions, and it is not possible to let it go and do jnAna vichAram, the wish 'better if I can give up actions, better if the yogyatA for jnAna vichAram arises' would be created. People who are in this way, won't be in large number among the karma sangis--attached to action. Still, as more than the number of those who go in tIvram--ardently, as mumukShus in nivRtti, for many people, at least this thought will exist in the basis.

In uddesham--purpose, of the pravRtti mArgam, given by Ishavara through the Vedas, the anuShTAnam of the same Karma KANDam, for such people also, by doing a great upakAram--help, serves as a great upAyam--means, which gives them the yogyatA for reaching the nivRtti mArgam, at least in some future time. ParamAtmA has arranged it that way.

What he has done is that, if these shAstrokta karmas--scriptural prescriptions of acts, which are Dharma, are done, he has made them give two kinds of phalas--fruits. For the two kinds of people who do the karmas in uddesham of two kinds of lakShyas--aims, he has arranged two kinds of phalas, in order that the lakShyam of each kind is accomplished.

• One kind, those who do not think beyond the pleasures of the bhUlokam--earth, and svarga lokam--heaven. If these people do as they please for the pleasures they seek, they cause kaShTam--difficulty/trouble, to the lokam--world, as well as seek pApam--sin, for them, and become useless without even getting the nashvara--perishable, pleasures they desire; and because of this, Ishvara has given them shAstroktam--scripturally, the karma kANDam, (which is) karma mArgam expressing his concern thus:

"appA--my dear! It is only possible for you to be sadA--always, doing some kArya--work. Only I have created you in such a manner. I have given you some svAtantrayam--freedome of the will, too. I have done all this just for me to witness my sport. But then (using your freedom of will), don't make me witness a veRik kUththu--(Tamil)revelry of obsession, and think, 'My sRShTi--Creation, has become so worse!' By doing things as you please, don't make it problematic for you, troublesome for the people, and painful for me! Only the Karma KANDam is the way (for you) to avoid it becoming this worse. I have given you karmas--prescriptions for action, therein, in order to really give you the bhUloka-svargaloka saukhyams--comforts, which you like. Since your svabhAvam--natural disposition, is in action, give up doing it as you please, and start doing it thus (the karmas prescribed in the shAstras).

"In doing karmAnuShTAna in this way, there would certainly be kaShTams--difficulties/problems, shrama--toil/exertion, and tyAgams--sacrifices. But then the difficulties that would arise later when you do things as you please would be far greater than these? There, even if it would be comfortable during the small period of time of your action, the effects that follow the actions would be parama kaShTam--extremely problematic, for a long time later. Whereas here, (every act done in veda shAstra anuShTAnam and svadharma paripAlanam) although it is shramam--of exertion, during the small period of time when it is done, with many niyamas--restraints, and dravya tyAgas--giving away wealth, its fruit is such that it gives santoSham--happiness, bahu kAlam--for a long time, isn't it? Therefore, make a decision, 'Let me correct myself, and do my actions (as per karma mArgam) with obedience to Ishvara'."

Thus has Ishvara prescribed the karma mArgam through the Vedas. This is for one kind of people. People who think it is enough to live a happy life without bothering about AtmAnubhavam, IshvarAnubhavam-- experience of Self and God.
I spoke about another kind. Same kind as that which can't do Atma vichAram or go melting in Ishvara. Still, these are people who have the thought, 'Why all these kAryas, turning round and round like the bull of an oilpress? After all, what are the pleasures obtained by this? They don't give an inner fulfilment! I should get it (somehow)!'

For these people too, Ishvara has given the same svadharmAnuShTAnas of the Karma KANDam as the margam--path. Still, (there is) a difference. As described above, people who are satisfied with the bhUloka-svarga loka santoShams, go in the karma mArgam, only with the uddesham--purpose, of santoSha prApti--reaching happiness. Ishvara himself has prescribed this fruit for that mArgam.

But then didn't I speak about another kind who think 'This fruit is not for us. We have no desire in such Anandas that are nashvara--perishable. Still, we don't have the chitta pakvam--mental ripeness, but then our svabhAvam is only in doing some kAryam', for them too Ishvara has prescribed that the same shAstroka karma mArgam gives them the chitta pakvam. The same karmAnuShTanam that gives one or two santoShams and ends with that if it is done with desire for fruits, if a person goes doing it thinking, 'This is IshvarAjnA--God's orders. The AjnA that he has given through the Vedas. We do anuShTAnam of it only obeying it for that. We don't need any of the santoSha phalas acquired by it', that will give them the chitta shuddhi--mental purification.

Without any desire for the fruits of own gains and happiness, that is, as niShkAma--desireless/disinterested/unselfish, 'It's the way BhagavAn has assigned for the lokam to be in the rightful order. kArya kramam--methods of actions. Let us do it as such only because it is karma mArgam', if someone starts doing karmas in this way,--without considerations of selfishness, without letting the dirt of desires touch them, obeying BhagavAn's orders, 'only for his prIti--gladness/satisfaction, I do it: paramameshvara prItyartham', thus according to svadharma, if a person voluntarily starts doing ALL the karmas prescribed for him,--all the doShas--blemishes, in his chittam will gradually wear away and disppear.

After obtaining such chitta shuddi, he can give up karma--action. The svabhAvam of being always busy in action will subside. Little by little, as dhyAnam, vichAram--thus later on he can go in the nivRtti mArgam.

For the karma mArgam, thus two kinds of fruits. One is the bhUloka-svargaloka santoSha phala--fruit, obtained directly by karma. Another is the phala of chitta shuddi, obtained in due course, by giving up the fruit in IshvarArpaNam--consigning to God, and doing karma only because it is his AjnA. The chitta shuddhi does not end there. It is that which creates the yogyatA--fitness/ability, to do pravesham--secure an entrace, in the path of nivRtti mArgam which is also the jnAya yogam.

Although I said two kinds of fruits, in vAstavam--reality, if it is karma phala, it is only in the tatkAla--temporary, santoShams that karma--action, directly gives in the bhUloka-svarga lokas. Even if it is thought that this fruit is not required, because he can't keep away from karma--action, because it gives him a discipline by doing svadharmas according to their vidhi--rules, and because by this he can help the rightful order of the samUham--society, when one does karma and he gets chitta shuddhi, that chitta shuddhi did not arise as the fruit directly from those kAryas--actions.

What are the gains of cultivating a vegetable garden? Only kathrikkAi sAmbAr--brinjal sAmbAr, veNDaikkAi kaRi--okra fry, ityAdi--such things, right? One person does not want this sAmbAr and kaRi; but he has agony--something like putra shokam--loss of son, loss in business. In order that it is not felt, he cultivates a vegetable garden doing some digging and grubbing so he might let the agony be forgotten. For that, if it is asked, 'what is the fruit of cultivating a vegetable garden?' can we say, 'putra shoka nivRtti'--'escape from the loss of son'?

In this manner, one who does karma without the requirement of the karma's ihAmutra phala (see note 02) does not ascribe the chitta shuddhi obtained as the karma phala. It is what he gets as Ishvara prasAdam. The chitta shuddhi is what Ishvara does anugraham--favour: 'remaining without the requirement of the direct fruits to him, because it is our AjnA and with the purpose of social order, this man does karmAnuShTAnam so well for our prIti! For such manobhAvam--mental state, let us clear the ashuddas in his chitta.'
Even what is the direct fruit is not given by karma itself. How can the karma which is but jaDa--inanimate/lifeless, give the fruit? Although it is only Ishvara who as the phala-dAdA gives it (the fruit), making a difference in it, he shows the bhUloka-svargaloka fruits that accrue to a person through external vastus--articles, as karma's direct phala, and the chitta shuddhi that arises inside, in the antaHkaraNam, for a jIva, as his prasAdam. Therefore, there is no custom to speak about chitta shuddhi as karma phala. In GItAdi shAstras too, whenever it is mentioned as karma phala or karma phala tyAgam, it is mentioned only in this meaning. Chitta shuddhi is not karma phala; it is obtained by doing tyagam--sacrifice, of the karma phala.

'There is no yogyatA to go in jnAna mArgam. With the santoShams obtained in karma too there is no complete fulfilment'--for such people, BhagavAn says, "Since you can't give up kAryas, keep doing them. But no have desire on the fruit. Doing phala tyAgam, do anuShTAnam of the karmas for my prIti alone. By that in due course the chitta shuddhi will arise. Then you can enter the jnAna mArgam." The Karma MArgam here gets elevated as Karma Yogam. (whereas) The jnAna mArgam is always only jnAna yogam.

Yoga means being united, to unite. In the adhyAtma shAstras, the ways that help a jIva to unite in parama satyam, would have been mentioned as yoga. It is not necessary that each of these (yogas) should directly get (a jIva) into the final satya lakShyam. Enough if it is like a lane that gets to the main road. This is also a yoga. That which directly unites in the lakShyam is jnAna yogam. That which gets to that main road is karma yogam. It might take several janmas--births. Still, one day it will get there.


01. pazhaiya kuruDi
This usage is from the old Tamil proverb:

பழைய குருடி, கதவைத் திறடி.

pazhaiya kuruDi, kadavaith thiRaDi.
Hey the old blind woman, open the door.

The explanation for this proverb given in the book A Classified Collection of Tamil Proverbs by Rev.Herman Jensen (an 1897 publication) is as follows:

A saint met some blind women in a certain house, and had compassion on them, and gave them their sight, for which they were very grateful. After some time he happened to visit the house again and found the women so prond and ungrateful that they would not open the door for him though he addressed them as above to remind them of their former condition and the blessing he had given them.

" The peril past the saint mocked."

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02. ihAmutra phala

iha-amutra phala. iha--in this world, amutra--there above/in the other world, phala--fruit/gain. Thus, the fruits obtained in the bhUloka and svarga loka.
The decline of karma yoga in passage of time
pages 301-304

Right at the time sRShTi--Creation, arose, thinking, "In my sRShTi, there should be jIvas with countless manobhAvam--mental attitudes, and this prapancham--universe, should be a nATaka vinodam--dramatic amusement, for me. For this purpose, there should be some svAtantrayam--freedome of the will, for the jIvas. But then the vinodam should not become viparItam--inverted/perverse", BhagavAn revealed through the Vedas the two paths, pravRtti and nivRtti mArgams.

In ancient times, during the pUrva yugas--bygone Yugas, people took up the mArgam that was destined for them and obtained shreyas--excellence. Some people went in nivRtti; and the others engaged themselves in pravRtti. One important thing about it was that: without allowing their jIva svAtantrayam run as they pleased, the people of the pUrva yugas, all of them, were of the thought to do things only for Ishvara prIti, in obedience to Ishvara. So, their desires did not go branching off, crossing the limit. What happened by this was that, although they did karmas for bhogya phalas until a certain time (in life), thereafter their attachment in those saukhyas--comforts, diminishing, they thought about redeeming their AtmA. But they had realized that they did not have the yogyatA for jnAna niShTa--meditation. Therefore, doing phalatyAgam that would take them there, they were doing anuShTAnam of the karma mArgam as karma yogam itself. The pravRtti dharma in those ancient days was shining in a lofty state as the very karma yogam itself. Progressing in this yogam, after excellent chitta shuddhi arose, obtaining sannyAsam and going in nivRtti, people were getting the mokSham.

Since in the Dharma ShAstras nivRtti has been prescribed as vAnaprastham, and sannyAsam after the gRuhasthAshramam, as a general way of life, it is known that everyone was doing it in their life in such a manner. It is known that although up to a certain age they did karmas in kAmyam--having desires, and enjoyed the bhogas--pleasures, therafter reducing their attachments, they started it (their living) as nishkAmya yoga. KAlidAsa in his 'RaghuvaMsham' has spoken about the SUrya VaMsha RAjas only in this way. Although in their yauvanam--youth, they were such as to have attachment in the viShaya sukham--objective/sensual pleasures, they dropped their sharIram--body, on their antimam--death, only after becoming yogis (see note 01).

Even in those days, there might have been some people who could not make yoga of their karma. But then they would also have known 'although it is not possible for us, only that is the way to nitya-shreyas--permanent excellence', adoring and doing namaskAram--prostrations, to the karma yogis and jnAna yogis. They did not seek to do sthApana--uphold/establish, that only their karma mArgam (where there is no yoga) was the highest.

Later, as years rolled by, desires began to swell in the people. Thereby, doing karma in desire of their gains, for phala only, increased. Obtaining chitta shuddhi doing phala tyAgam, and then going in nivRtti--this was steadily declining. Those who did karma this way (for phala only) had written it down as a great siddhAnta: "Only this is right. Only this is the parama puruShArtha sAdhana. The sannyAsa mArgam that gave up karma is very wrong." Repudiating Ishvara, Atma sAkShAtkAram and such things, they developed the siddhAnta, "vedokta karma gives phala on its own. There is no phala-dAdA as Ishvara. No AtmAnanda mokSham without any kAryam--action. Let us go to svargam--heaven, doing the karmas prescribed in the Vedas only for their phala. Even if there is a mokSha above the svargam, how can it be said that it will be obtained by mere jnAna vichAram without any action? What we need to do until the end is only karma. If that mokSha could come thereby, let it come."

The UpaniShads which are the ending parts of the Vedas, speak about nivRtti jnAnam and sAkShatkAram--Self realization. They are called the uttara bhAgam--rear part, of the Vedas. Repudiating that which is called the jnAna kANDam, and accepting only the karma kANDam described in the pUrva bhAgam--front part, of the Vedas, the siddhAnta thus developed, has the names 'pUrva mImAMsA' and 'karma mImAMsA'. 'mImAMsa' means 'investing into good things'.

The siddhAnta developed on the basis of the jnAna kANDam which is the uttara bhAgam has the name 'uttara mImAMsA'. Still, the custom is to refer to it as 'VedAnta'. Since it is the shAstra--scripture, relating to the UpaniShads that occur at the anta--end, of each veda shAkhA==branch of Veda, the name 'VedAnta' arose for it. And the custom arose to refer to the 'pUrva mImAMsA' as (just) 'mImAMsA'. Let this subject be on one side.


01. RaghuvaMsham

शशवे अभ्यस्थ विद्यानाम् यौवने विषय एणिनाम् ।

वार्थके मुनि वृत्तीनाम् योगेन अन्ते तनु त्यजताम् ॥१.८॥

shashave abhyastha vidyAnAm yauvane viShaya eNinAm |
vArthake muni vRuttInAm yogena ante tanu tyajatAm ||1.8||

About those who in their adolescence are masterly in studies; in adulthood predisposed for material pleasures; in old-age gravitating towards saintlike activities, and at end-time yoking their minds with the Absolute and ultimately evicting their souls from their bodies to attain mokSham.
Upadeshas of the two MArgas
pages 304-307

Since the days of sRShTi--Creation, sending mahApuruShas--great men, as AchAryALs--teachers, BhagavAn used to get the upadesham--instruction/teaching, of the two dharmas known as prVRtti and nivRtti done. Since nivRtti is the final mokSha siddhi, he remained as the guru for it in DakShiNAmUrti rUpam. That is Paramashiva svarUpam. One he is chiefly (the deivam--deity) for nivRtti. ViShNu too gave upadesham of nivRtti mArgam in the rUpas--forms, HaMsAvatAra, DattAtreyIya and HayagrIva. Still, in these (avatAras), he did not show that much shakti--power, as he did in his DashAvatAram.

DakShiNAmUrti, HaMsa and HayagrIva did not give jnAnopadesham doing saMchAram--wandering about, in the lokam--world. People like the SanakAdi--four Sanaka saints, and BrahmA sought them and had upadesham. DakShiNAmUrti, instead of teaching in words, would do anugraham--favour, of it as anubhavam--experience.

Now, when we pray to the Gods, many of our prayers get fulfilled. But that Deivam does not do it becoming pratyakSham--visible. They do it in sUkShmam--through subtle planes, is it not? In that way, there are people who prayed to DakShiNAmUrti and HayagrIva for jnAnam and got, are getting that anugraham in sUkShmam.

If it is shivAlayam--Shiva's temple, knowing that there as jnAna dAdA he would be present in DakShiNAmUrti rUpam, everyone including the rustic people, would for a kShaNam--moment, closing their eyes, would pray to him, although they don't know what is jnAnam. It can't be said to this extent about HayagrIva. Thus it is (the tradition), to think only about Paramashiva for the nivRtti mArgam.

Those who did saMchAram like DattAtreyIya--the SanakAdi, were also only ViShNu's aMshAvataras; they too would do saMchAram; and these people gave upadesham of nivRtti
to many people at different times. Still, they did not go teaching their shiShya jana--disciples/pupils, planning only that upadesha kAryam as their siddhAnta.

For the pravRtti dharma, ParamAtma did not need to do so much directly by himself. Since going in jnAnam as nivRtti, giving up kAryam, giving up manas--mind, is difficult for the people, in uddesham--pupose, of it, he acted to send greater number of mahAns and also give the upadesham himself. The manuShya svabhAvam--human nature, being going in action with their mind and kAryas--tasks, for the pravRtti sAdhana done using these very things, it was sufficient to teach them by their vidyAbhyAsa guru--educational teacher, according to the shrauta, smArta shAstras.

• Still, it was such in the Adi--ancient times, that only BhagavAn had to give upadesham to Vivasvan, that is SUrya, the rahasya--secret, that if these karmAnuShTAnas are done niShkAmya, it would become the yogam that could provide the chitta shuddi necessary for progressing in the nivRtti mArgam.

• SUrya in turn did upadesham to Vaivasvata Manu, the adhipati--lord/ruler, of our manvantara (see note 01), the pravRtti dharma of karma yoga (that is, one that paves the way for the nivRtti mArgam). Vaivasvata means 'son of Visvan'.

• Vaivasvata Manu in turn did upadesham to his son and the first rAjA of the SUryakula--Solar Dynasty, IkShvAku.

Thus the pravRtti dharma as karma yoga was given in upadesham through the lineage of sons for a long time and was observed as such.

• That to the Vivasvan who is SUrya he did upadesham of the karma yoga, and it reached through the lineage of sons to aneka rAjariShis--many royal sages, BhagavAn has mentioned in his GItA (beginning of the fourth chapter).

Both the yogas, karma and jnAna, are given upadesham--instructions, in the GItA. In addition, the bhakti yoga, which I have not mentioned till now, is also given upadesham.


01. manvantara

One day of BrahmA when he acts in his jAgrat--waking, state, comprises a thousand chatur yugas--four Yugas. The sRShTi--Creation, also will function during that time. When that time ends, BrahmA's night comprising another thousand chatur yugas will be born. He would sleep during that time; and the sRShTi to will shrink into him, without any fuction. This is what is called the kalpa praLayam. When the night ends and the next day of BrahmA starts, the SRShTi will be started again.

During the time of one thousand chatur yugas when sRShTi is functioning, fourteen Manus will appear and lord over the sRShTi. The ruling time of a Manu is thus known as manvantara. At the end of the time of each Manu, there will be Manvantara PraLaya. The next Manu will appear as the first prajA--citizen, and create the manuShya kulam--humanity. During the present ShvetasvarAha kalpam, we are in the manvantara of the seventh Manu who is Vaivasvata.
pages 307-310

Since the flow (of my lecture) was about pravRtti and nivRtti as doing kAryas and not doing any, the karma yoga that is kAryam, and the jnAna yoga that gives up kAryas and remains in ekAntam--solitude, doing dhyAna vichAram,--only these two were mentioned and it was left at that.

Bhakti comes as kAyam--action, and ShaDanggam--rites, involved in the pUja.

It will go up to (the stage of) actionless meditation sitting in savikalpa samAdhi, without any iha-prajna--sense about the physical world, getting captivated in BhagavAn. "Even that relation of getting captivated in him is not enough, should get merged in him without any sort of separation"--thus when bhakti reaches such a uchcha--lofty, level, that same bhakti would become jnAna.

In the jana samUham--society of people, the majority will be such that they don't take to tattva research as yoga, vedAnta, mImAMsa. To all the people including these people, as alpam--small/minute, or svalpam--very small/very minute, only bhakti is the one that sets in them as svAbhAvika--natural/peculiar/spontaneous, in some way or other. There is no talk here about the nAstikas--atheists, or the mImAMsakas who set aside Ishavara prastAvam--eulogizing God, as unnecessary.

To any person in general, the thought of bhakti, "For this world to be born and going on in this way, there should be a mahAshakti--a great power, as the reason. We should be in obedience to it", would never cease to arise.

Although they are karma sangis--attached to action, generally people will not accept the mImAMsa concept that there is no necessity for a phala dAdA as Ishvara. They would only look at him as the mahAshakta who could fulfil any of their wishes. Money, education, health, promotion whatever, although they keep doing kArya, endeavouring to get all these, they would still keep holding their bhakti towards him to the extent they know about it, with the consideration that only if his grace is there, what is wanted would be accomplished. Although people who say "This is not bhakti, only vyApAram--business," keep saying it, these people think that they are in bhakti as far as they are concerned.

Although those who know that it is the same God who grants his blessings through many devatas do parihAsam--make fun, of people who stop at doing ArAdhana--worship, to each devata for each kAmana--wish/desire, without knowing the truth, even in these (latter) people, in some corner, a real thought of bhakti to the Eka ParamAtma, is not absent altogether.

Since the kAmanas--wishes/desires, would be according to the guNas of the individuals, in the arrangement of doing upAsana--worship, to different deiva bhedas--deity distinctions, to get these (desires) fulfilled, and to set up an upAsana mArga--worship path, in accordance with their guNa, several things that are not good, also arrive in worship. Just as the karma yoga declined among the MImAMsakas, it happens that the bhakti yoga too declines to a low level. Bhagavan has spoken about this (subject) too in his GItA.

• He has spoken in the adhyAya--chapter (7), called 'jnAna vijnAna yoga' about the subjects of doing upAsana--worship, to several devatas in kAmyam--fulfilment of desires, and obtain phalas--fruits, that are nashvara--perishable; and doing upAsana of the paramAtmA who is ekam--only one, and obtain shAsvata phalas--permanent/imperishable fruits.

• Then, before closing, in the chapter (17) called 'shraddhAtraya vibhAgayoga', he describes, "People of sattva guNa satya devatas, rajo guNis yakSha-rAkShasas, and of tAmasa guNa bhUta pretas do worship to." Here, worship methods that are obscene, worship methods like the narabali--human sacrifice, that are krUra--bloddy/cruel, are also included.

I came to tell you about how bhakti--devotion, arises in different levels with different things, from the parAkAShTa--boundless, state of the nivRtti mArga, to the mahA-nIcha--very low, action of chopping at the neck and giving in sacrifice, in pravRtti.

There can only be two things as pravRtti and nivRtii in opposition to each other? Where can another come as the third? Which why the mention of only karma and jnAna, and the omission of bhakti that arises in svAbhAvikam in sakala janas--all people, and goes embracing everything from the low state of karma to the high state of jnAna.

• The jnAni who knows anubhava-pUrva--through experience, that the world is mAyA, also goes melting in bhakti: "Remaining such a ParamAtma, as atIshvara--God beyond, to mAyA, what all the things he plays (in his lIlA)!"

• There are parama bhaktas--supereme devotees, who set aside jnAnam as not at all necessary, and also set aside samsAra pravRtti in the same way, and do dhyAna--meditation, only about his mahimas--greatness/majesty/power, and experience him in sAkShAt--manifestly, in the bhAva--frame of mind, such as vAtsalyam--fatherly affection.

• There are those who stay in pravRtti and pray that only he should give them the jnAna bhikSha--alms of knowledge, and take them to nivRtti.

• Karma yogins also do bhakti upAsana--devotional worship, because, to obtain the yogyatA--fitness, which would get them into jnAna yoga, along with the chitta shuddha, the chitta aikAkriyam (singular concentration) is also required to be obtained and to hold the chittam in a single thought, only the Ishvara chintana--thinking about God, helps. In addition, doing arpaNam--submission, of the phalas of their kAryas to him, considering him as the phala dAdA, they worship him in this way.

• Without being (karma) yogins, people like us who go in action only wishing their fruits, do something which we are thinking is bhakti, praying, "I shall break coconuts, do anga-pradakShNa--rolling over, SvAmI! Please do this, do that for me."

• There are people who even more crudely, and as bIbhadsa--loathsome, indulge in madyapAna--drinking intoxicating liquors, strI-bhoga--sexually enjoying women, and up to chopping a kaDA--(Tamil)he-goat, (in sacrifice), doing it all thinking them as (acts of) bhakti.

Whatever it is, all of it in the end has to be included in either one of pravRtti and nivRtti. Which is why it was stopped mentioning only them (leaving out bhakti).

• Still, in addtion to mentioning that the Karma KANDam of the Vedas as AdhAra--support, for pravRtti dharma, their JnAna KANDam as the AdhAra for nivRtti dharma, some people would mention as the AdhAra for the bhakti worship, an UpAsanA KANDam in the same Vedas.

• In the GItA, three yogas as karma, bhakti and jnAna are clearly mentioned. Some would also say that the first six adhyAyas--chapters comprise the karma ShaDgam, the next six chapters bakti ShaDgam, and the six chapters that follow as the concluding part as jnAna ShaDgam.

The Yogas that the GItA speaks about
pages 311-313

Thus, in addition to mentioning the three yogas, for each subject that occurs as their parts in the eighteen adhyAyas--chapters, BhagavAn has given the very name yoga. Only the 'sAMkhya yoga' (chapter 2) and 'karma yoga' (ch.3) are the ones that directly (in that order) refer to the nivRtti mArga and pravRtii mArga. One adhyAya--chapter 12--has the name 'bhakti yoga'.

Apart from these, as 'dhyAna yoga' ('AtmasaMyama yoga', ch.6), 'rAjavidyA-rAjaguhya yoga' (ch.9), 'vibhUti yoga' (ch.10), 'puruShottama yoga' (ch.15)--in this manner, a total of eighteen yogas are given as heading in the GItA. 'Arjuna viShAda yoga' is the name of the first adhyaya. That is, even Arjuna's confusion of mind is called a yoga!

'Was it Only BhagavAn who gave these headings to the eighteen adhyAyas? He was only doing saMvAda--coonversation, with Arjuna? In the middle of it, wherefrom did the chapter heading come?' If such questions are asked, I know not how to reply. The belief that the GItA is what BhagavAn spoke is enough for us. If VyAsa who included it and wrote the (MahA)BhAratam had given the headings, it would be like BhagavAn doing it. VyAsa was also BhagavAn's avatAra, aMshAvatara--avatar in features.

Why did he mention viShAda, that is the confusion of mind, as yoga? Only because of that (the mental confusion) it occurred to him (Arjuna) to think about Atma sambandham--in relation to AtmA? That is why!

Until then with countless people without any confusion of mind, he had fought, won, and obtained the very name 'Vijaya'. Only now, in this KurukShetra, when looking at BhIShma the Grandfather, DroNa the AchArya--teacher, and the Kauravas sons of periyappA--father's elder brother, he got his mind confused, and thoughts such as 'What is to be obtained by winning these people and ruling the rAyjam--country? Compared with this, it is better to get alms and eat.' had arisen in him.

Of course, this is not the virakti--indifference to worldly objects, that arose after his manas--mind, ripened and became mature. One who until now without thinking whether it is hiMsa--violence, or ahiMsa--non-violence, fought the battle with anya manuShas--strangers, with parAkrama--heroism, today in the ajnAna attachment, pAsha bandha--ties of affection, 'O these are all our people', he has thought about it in an asaTTu virakti--stupid indifference. BhagavAn scolds him because, for one who has to do the dharma yuddha--war to establish dharma, he has become so stupid.

Still, only because such a confusion arose, he could think something apart from rAjya bhogam--royal indulgence, about nivRtti? Only because of it, it was sAdhyam--possible, for BhagavAn to teach him the sattya tattvam--principle of Reality?

Until then, except that BhagavAn could do for him only such kAryas--things, as giving SubhadrA in vivAha--marriage, to him, even being dishonest in the task, could he open his mouth towards him (Arjuna) as jnAnopadesham--teaching of jnAna? Therefore, since in some way the viShAda too dropped in the good, that (chapter) has got the name 'viShAda yoga'!

At the time he gave upadesha to Arjuna, BhagavAn went on naming all of it as 'yoga, yoga', which served as upAya--means, and anukUla--favourable, to get chitta shuddhi and obtain ekIbhAvam--feeling of oneness, with ParamAtma. If 'union' is the meaning of 'yoga', whatever helps to unite with ParamAtma are all only yogas? What is the meaning of saying, "For him it is the yogA kAlam, so he takes everything in scoop"? The meaning is that as per his jAtakam--horoscope, the grahas are joined, got united, in good sthAnas--positions, and everything turns out well for him.

Although there are thus several unions, yogas, which is the parama uttama--supremely lofty, yoga? Only to get united with ParamAtma, right? Only that is the Vedas' parama tAtparyam--ultimate aim/purpose/meaning.

Advaita, the nirantara yoga
Underlined English terms are the ones actually used by ParmAchArya.--sd

pages 313-315

Even in uniting thus, the uttama--most elevated, status is to unite with ParamAtma in nirantaram. For 'nirantaram' we take the meaning 'that which is shAsvatam--permanent, in kAlam--time'. That too is not incorrect. 'antaram' means 'gap'. 'nirantaram' is 'one without any gap whatsoever'. Leaving no gap (interval) in time is also right only, but kAlam is one that we add here in our abhiprAyam--opinion. 'nirantaram' means only 'without any gap whatsoever'. Being filled without any gap in space is also 'nirantaram'. Thus, if don't suppy as 'time' and 'space', for 'nirantaram' the only meaning is 'without any gap whatsoever'.

When it is said 'to united with ParamAtma in nirantaram' the meaning is to unite so that there is no gap between him and the jIvAtman. To be united is only to become as One. Until becoming as One, at least some gap will continue to remain. Even if there is a small gap, it would only mean that he is there, we are here, thus (both are in) in bheda--with distinction, remaining separated. So long as it is such, there will remain the bhayam--fear, 'will this gap become larger?' Therefore, without any gap altogether, getting aikyam--unity, with him in 'nir-antaram', should become Him. Called 'jIva-brahma abheda yoga', this is what the shruti-shiras (UpaniShad which is the end of the Veda) gives as the parama uttama yoga--supremely elevated yoga.

• It is mentioned in the TaittIryopaniShad's Brahmavalli part (also known as Anandavalli), "If there is antaram, that is, even a minute gap, minute difference, the fear this union would end at some point of time, would continue to be there." (see note 01).

• One who is mumukShu, only when he remains firm in Brahmam, only then gets his abhaya pratiShTha--fearless esetablishment, it is mentioned thus before that (previous quarter of the verse). (This is) Advaitam. Advaitam is jIvAtma thus uniting with Braham without any distinction as two, and becoming that same Brahmam. (see note 01).

Only to teach this uttama yoga of jIva-brahma abheda, did BhagavAn teach his GItA. But then to him (Arjuna) who was a kShatriya--of ruler class, a karma vIra--hero of deeds, if the nivRtti mArga suitable for this is given immediately, he would not be able to absorb and follow it, so, teaching karma yoga in mukhyam--chiefly, and then teaching many other yogas, in the end he very well explained nivRtti as 'mokSha sannyAsa yoga' (chapter 18).

But then since Arjuna could come to jnAna niShta--meditation for jnAna, only after doing anuShTAnam--observance, of karma yoga, if he did sharaNAgati--surrender, dedicating all his kAryas--tasks, to him (BhagavAn) who is the phala-dhAtA, he ended with the abhaya vAk--words of protection, that he would release Arjuna from sakala pApam--all sins. He finished, stroking Arjuna with parama kAruNyam--supreme compassion, and comforting him with the words, "mA shuchaH"--"dont grieve". (see note 02).


01. TaittIrya upaniShad 2.7.1

"For, whenever the aspirant creates the slightest difference in It, he is smitten with fear."

earlier part of the same verse

"For whenever an aspirant gets fearlessly established in this un-perceivable, bodiless, inexpressible, and un-supporting Brahman, he reaches the state of fearlessness."

02. Bhagavad GItA 18.66

सर्वधर्मान्परित्यज्य मामेकं शरणं व्रज ।

अहं त्वा सर्वपापेभ्यो मोक्ष्ययिष्यामि मा शुचः ॥१८.६६॥

sarvadharmAnparityajya mAmekaM sharaNaM vraja |
ahaM tvA sarvapApebhyo mokShyayiShyAmi mA shuchaH ||18.66||

18.66 Abandoning all forms of rites and duties, take refuge in Me alone. I sahll free you from all sins. (Therefore) do not grieve.
--English Translation of Sri Sankaracharya's Sanskrit Commentary--Swami Gambhirananda

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The punaruddhAraNam--revival that KaNNan--KRShNa brought about
pages 315-320

The yoga that he taught to SUrya, which was later passed down in teaching in the lineage of the IkShvAku dynasty, in kAlakram--order of time/due course, crumbled, BhagavAn told Arjuna and said, "I have come only to give it a new lease of life by teaching it to you, who is my bhakta--devotee, and sakha--friend", and did his GItopadesham. On the pretext of teaching Arjuna, he taught it to the entire loka--world.

इमं विवस्वते योगं प्रोक्तवानहमव्ययम् ।
विवस्वान्मनवे प्राह मनुरिक्ष्वाकवेऽब्रवीत् ॥ ४.१ ॥

एवं परम्पराप्राप्तमिमं राजर्षयो विदुः ।
स कालेनेह महता योगो नष्टः परन्तप ॥ ४.२ ॥

स एवायं मया तेऽद्य योगः प्रोक्तः पुरातनः ।
भक्तोऽसि मे सखा चेति रहस्यं ह्येतदुत्तमम् ॥ ४.३ ॥

imaM vivasvate yogaM proktavAnahamavyayam |
vivasvAnmanave prAha manurikShvAkave&bravIt || 4.1 ||

evaM paramparAprAptamimaM rAjarShayo viduH |
sa kAleneha mahatA yogo naShTaH parantapa || 4.2 ||

sa evAyaM mayA te&dya yogaH proktaH purAtanaH |
bhakto&si me sakhA cheti rahasyaM hyetaduttamam || 4.3 ||

4.1 (The Blessed Lord said --) I imparted this imperishable Yoga to Vivasvan, Vivasvan taught this to Manu, and Manu transmitted this to Iksavaku.

4.2 The king-sages knew this (yoga) which was received thus in regular succession. That Yoga, O destroyer of foes, in now lost owing to a long lapse of time.

4.3 That ancient Yoga itself, which is this, has been taught to you by Me today, considering that you are My devotee and friend, For, this (Yoga) is a profound secret.
--shankara bhAShya, GambhIrAnanda

ParamAchArya's explanation:

"I taught this imperishable yoga to SUrya. SUryan taught Manu. Manu taught IkShvAku.

"Thus the RAjarishis who came in the vaMsha parampara--lineage of successors, had known it. O destroyer of foes (Arjuna)! In the long passage of time, that yoga became naShTa--withered, in this world.

"You are a bhakta--devotee, to me; also remain as a friend! Only that purAtana--ancient, yoga was explained to you today by me. Isn't this a uttama rahasyaM--a profound secret?"

The yoga BhagavAn refers to here is the Karma Yoga. Only that (yoga), after the RAjarishis--royal sages, did paripAlam--fostered it, bahukAlam--for a long time, had become chaitilyam--dilapidated, during KRShNa's time, so he says that he givee its upadesham again to Arjuna who belongs to the RAjakulam--royam family, and does its punaruddhAraNam--revival. It would appear so if we look at the GItA's immediate context.

But then in the beginning of the previous adhyAya--chapter,--just as he mentioned here about teaching the Karma Yoga in Adi--the beginning of time, to Surya--he has also mentioned that he taught both the JnAna Yoga and the Karma Yoga to the sannyasins called SAMkhyas and the niShkAmya karma mArgis called Yogis.

लोकेऽस्मिन् द्विविधा निष्ठा पुरा प्रोक्ता मयानघ ।
ज्ञानयोगेन साङ्ख्यानां कर्मयोगेन योगिनाम् ॥ ३.३ ॥

loke&smin dvividhA niShThA purA proktA mayAnagha |
j~jAnayogena saa~gkhyAnAM karmayogena yoginAm || 3.3 ||

3.3 The Blessed Lord said -- O unblemished one, two kinds of steadfastness in this world were spoken of by Me in the days of yore-through the Yoga of Knowledge for the men of realization; through the Yoga of Action for the yogis.
--shankara bhAShya, GambhIrAnanda

Therefore it becomes clear that to do punaruddhAraNam--revival, of not only the Karma Yoga for those in the pravRtti, but also the JnAna Yoga for those in the nivRtti, did KRShNa take avatar. When he said these two yogas, it only means 'all the yogas'! Whatever (yoga), that should only come under one of the two, pravRtti and nivRtti?

Even the RAjarishis he mentioned as the descendents of the IkShvAku vaMsham, when they taught the pravRtti dharma, polishing it as Karma Yoga, they could not have stopped abruptly there, without teaching something about the nivRtti dharma, that is JnAna Yoga where it (Karma Yoga) led to. Let their samAchAram--practice, be whatever. BhagavAn certainly did uddhAraNam--foster, of both pvavRtti and nivRtti, giving them new life. In the GItA he has gone teaching about sakala--all yogas only? Still, inasmuch as his upadesha starts at the SAMkhya Yoga meant only for the JnAnis, and ends at the MokSha SannyAsa Yoga, it is known (with certainty) that he establishes only the nivRtti dharma of getting advaita siddhi by jnAnam, as his parama lakShyam--supreme aim/object.

• If BhagavAn has praised the Karma Yoga giving it emphasis in many places to the extent of some people thinking that GItA teaches only Karma Yoga, the reason is only that the direct shiShya Arjuna, who received GItopadesham from him, was adhikArin--entitled to, only Karma Yoga.

Thus, to put in order the two mArgas pravRtti and nivRtti, and establish the jnAna moKSha as the end, and do saMsthApana--regulation of, the vaidika dharma, that the KRShNAvatara took place. In his GItAbhAShya upodghAtaH--preface, AchAryAL has thus made it clear.

Although KRShNa ParamAtma spoke in vyakta--apparently, about only the Karma Yoga that had become naShTa--withered, during his time, during that time in fact all the yogas, all the mArgas, had become impaired, it is thus known from his GItA. Although they had not damaged altogether as it happened in Kali, even in the DvApara Yuga when he took avatAra touching this (Kali) Yuga, it is known that in general there was some destruction in all the mArgas--paths.

• He chides in one place that one who poses externally as having mastered the indryAs--senses, which do the karma--actions, but internally only thinks about the earthly pleasures which are indrya viShaya--within the scope of senses, as mere mithyAchAra, that is a deceiver, hypocrite (see note 01).

This is in nivRtti. That is, this shows that even in those days there were vAi vedAntis--(Tamil) lip Vedantins, who had appeared to have gone in jnAna mArga but actually slipped from that ideal.

• Before this, in the very second adhyAya where he starts his upadesha, he has chided the MImAMsakas (see note 02).

He calls them 'veda vAdaratAs', who without taking the tattvArta--principle, that is the sAra--essence, of the Vedas, analyzing and debating those vAkyas--sentences, only grammatically, and feeling elated about it.

Only by explaining the meaning thus, the MImAMsakas do nirNaya--determine, that the very prayojana--purpose, of the Vedas is in directing the manuShya--man, in karma--actions, and not in going as a sannyAsin in jnAna vichAram, giving up the karma.

He chides these people who do karma only for fulfilment of desires as kAmAtma. He does khaNDanam of--refutes, them as the 'svargaparA', who seek only the world of revelry called Devaloka, instead of seeking the nityAnda--permanent bliss, called MokSha. As they get their bhoga--enjoyment, and aishvarya--wealth, only in this way, they do prasanggam--propaganda, of these vistAra--elaborate, rites in pramAda--madness, and vashIkara--subjugation, whereas in vAstavam--reality, those rites only push (people) into the whirl of birth (he refutes them thus).

He uses the phrase 'puShpitAM vAchaM' to indicate that like doing puShpAlangkAram--decoration with flowers, these people win, doing adornment in words. In English too, they say flowery language. He calls these people 'avipashchita'--unwise/ignorant. This shows that even Karma Yoga had become impoverished during KRShNa's time. 'Yoga that had become naShTa--withered, in later times', as BhagavAn put it.

I mentioned earlier about the wrong paths that appeared in the bhakti mArga too. I mentioned about the rajo-tamo guNa people, in rAjasam and tAmasikam, worshipping everything, up to the YakSha RAkShasas and bhUta pretas.

Only to remove the decay that had thus occurred in all the mArgas, and do punaruddhAraNam--revival, of them, did KRShNAvatAram take place.

You would be knowing what KRShNa said about his avatar, as only for dharma saMsthApana--regulation, of dharma. I began (my lecture) saying that dharma is what is classified as pravRtti dharma and nivRtti dharma. Until the pravRtti mArga was not such as to develop for nivRtti as niShkAmya yoga, KRShNa ParamAtma was not prepared to give it the name 'dharma'. Howevermuch Veda karmAnuShtAnam is done, if it is done for karma phala, there is no prayojana--use; doing sacrifice of the phala, and obtaining the chitta pakvam--mental maturity, to undertake the nivRtti mArgam for nitya saukhyam--permanent welfare, was the prayojana--purpose,--only this was his abhiprAya--opinion. He told as his abhiprAya too, only what is in the VedAnta.

That is what AchAryAL too made prakAsha--shining, polishing it well. Only if the pravRtti is made Karma Yoga, by that Karma Yoga chitta shuddhi, and after obtaining chitta shuddhi, the attachment in karma having gone, the rise of interest in jnAna vichAram and then going in nivRtti, will set in.

If the mImAMsa of doing karma throughout the Ayus--lifetime, for only phala--fruits, is accepted, then where is the nivRtti mArgam? In this way, during the days of KRShNa, chiefly for the nivRtti dharma the hAni--damage/loss occurred, and he took avatAra to do sthApana--regulation/preservation, of both.


01. mithyAchAra: GItA

कर्मेन्द्रियाणि संयम्य य आस्ते मनसा स्मरन् ।
इन्द्रियार्थान्विमूढात्मा मिथ्याचारः स उच्यते ॥ ३.६ ॥

karmendriyANi saMyamya ya Aste manasA smaran |
indriyArthAnvimUDhAtmA mithyAchAraH sa uchyate || 3.6 ||

3.6 One, who after withdrawing the organs of action, sits mentally recollecting the objects of the senses, that one, of deluded mind, is called a hypocrite.
--shankara bhAShya, GambhIrAnanda

01. vedavAdaratA: GItA

51;ामिमां पुष्पितां वाचं प्रवदन्त्यविपश्चितः ।
वेदवादरताः पार्थ नान्यदस्तीति वादिनः ॥ २.४२ ॥

कामात्मानः स्वर्गपरा जन्मकर्मफलप्रदाम् ।
क्रियाविशेषबहुलां भोगैश्वर्यगतिं प्रति ॥ २.४३ ॥

yAmimAM puShpitAM vAchaM pravadantyavipashchitaH |
vedavAdaratAH pArtha nAnyadastIti vAdinaH || 2.42 ||

kAmAtmAnaH svargaparA janmakarmaphalapradAm |
kriyAvisheShabahulAM bhogaishvaryagatiM prati || 2.43 ||

2.42-2.43 O son of Prtha, those undiscerning people who utter this flowery talk--which promises birth as a result of rites and duties, and is full of various special rites meant for the attainment of enjoyment and affluence--,they remain engrossed in the utterances of the Vedas and declare that nothing else exists; their minds are full of desires and they have heaven as the goal.

KRShNa and Shankara
pages 320-322

What is the subject taken (for discussion)? We came to listen to the story of BhagavadpAdAL; without beginning with where and to whom he was born as the son, it started with pravRtti and nivRtti, and has now stopped at KRShNAvatAram instead of ShankarAvatAram?--it might seem so.

The avashyam--necessity, for the ShankarAvatAram arose, only after the circumstances that prevailed in the KRShNAvatAra kAlam--time of KRShNa's avatar, reached a critical stage. Only in accordance with the vAkku--(Tamil) promise/assurance, that he gave in KRShNAvataram, this man's avatAra was to happen.

• Without KRShNa, there is no AchAryAL. He was the one who spread it all over the world as 'bhaja govindam, bhaja govindam'.

• There is a belief that the very Alaya mUrti--temple deity, who was the kula deivam--family deity, in the place where Shankara was born, was only KRShNa.

• If it has ensued today that if we say 'jagadguru' it is only our AchAryAL, the one who had received that virudhu--title, before him is only KRShNa ParamAtma. There is this very stotram (that extols him) as "kRShNam vande jagadgurum" ('kRShNAShTakam' by Shankara).

• For the GItA that Jagadguru has taught, this Jagadguru has written an explanatory commentary.

Above all these things, at a time when dharma had become so much kShINa--diminished/withered, and adharma swelled gaining control, our AchAryAL's avatAra took place, and even today we listen to his charitram--life, and feel happy, one who had given the assuruance that in such a circumstance such an avatAra must necessarily arise, is only KRShNa ParamAtma. Everyone would be knowing, the vAkku he had given:

dharmasaMsthApanArthAya sambhavAmi yuge yuge || 4.8 ||--GItA

What he said before this as the previous shloka:

yadA yadA hi dharmasya glAnirbhavati bhArata |
abhyutthAnam-adharmasya tadAtmAnaM sRujAmyaham || 4.7 ||

That is, he gave that assurance to us, satyam paNNi--(Tamil) swearing with a gesture of promise: "Whenever there arises hAni--dimunition, for dharma, and a swelling rise for adharma, at those times I shall make an avatAra of myself and come."

Only to save that assurance, shrI ShankarAvatAram took place later. For all such reasons, it is only appropriate to mention that avatAra first and then talk about this avatAra.

Let the llstening to the avatAra kathA--story, be on one side. One should know what for did this avatar take place, isn't it? Which is why all that talk about pravRtti-nivRtti, and karma-jnAna-bhakti. Both the avatAras came about only to do jIrNoddhAra--repair what is ruined, of those ways. Even more than the time of KRShNa ParamAtma, at a time when these ways had gone far ruined, did AchAryAL's avatAra take place, and did punaruddhAraNam--revival, that was mahat--great/huge.

pUrvakAla avatAras--Avatars of Ancient Times
pages 322-325

Even before the KRShNAvatAra, from Matsya to RAmA, seven avatars had taken place. As the eight avatar BalarAma was KRShNa's samakAla--contemporary, I stopped with RAmA. Those avatars were not the ones, that took place to give upadesha--teaching, of pravRtti-nivRtti. Although they might have given some upadesha, it was not the mukhya--chief, goal of that AvatAra. Because in those times the circumstance was not such as to have BhagavAn himself take avatar for upadesham.

• Just as the Karma Yoga was going on well continuously through SUrya--Manu--IkShvAku and then their vaMsha--descendents, as BhagavAn said (in his GItA),

• the JnAna Yoga and Bhakti Yoga too were going on continuously in those times, in an order, through the jnAna-parampara--tradition of JnAna, and bhakti-parampara--tradition of devotion, represented by their guru-shiShya--teacher-disciple.

People in general were going in the right path.

As to why the avatars took place in those times, it was only to destroy the clans of Asuras and RAkShasas, when they came to power and tormented the people. After this saMhAra-kRtyam--act of destruction, was over, people would be going in the good path as before, in nirbhaya--fearlessly. Without any necessity of sAkShAt Ishvara himself doing upadesha by taking birth, it was going on through mahAns--sages. People according to the mental disposition of each, were going in whatever yoga (that suited them), in pravRtti or nivRtti.

In order to make the greatness of jnAnam known, although BhagavAn did give upadesha from time to time through his avatars Datta and HaMsa, it was not necessarity for him to take up his Ishvara-shakti--God's power, in visheShaM--specially, for this purpose. Only if something becomes very chaitilyam--dilapidated, was there the need to spend much shakti--strength, to lift it and make it stand upright as before? This is why they (our ancestors) distinctly classified

• the avatars required for the asura-rAkShasa saMhAram--destruction of the Asuras and RAkShasas, as BhagavAn's sAkShAt-shaktimat--with visible divine power, DashAvatAras--ten avatars;

• and the avatars he took for upadesham, such as the SanakAdiya, Nara-NArAyaNa, Kapila, Datta, VyAsa as aMshAvatAras--avatars with a share of divine power.

• There is a count of twenty-four avatars. In that will be included the DashAvatAra and these jnAnopadesha avatars; in addition, those of Dhanvantari, Mohini, etc. will also come under (this count).

What happened after RAmAvatAra and before KRShNAvatAra was that, the Asura-RAkShasas, instead of remaining as they were, excessively did Avesha--enter/take possession, of several rAjAs--kings, who were in manuShya-rUpam--human form.

• KaMsa, JarAsaMdha and the Kauravas were born in the very manuShya-jAti--human species. Still, they were of the asura-guNa--Asuric temperament.

• ParashurAma too started with the saMhAram--destruction, of a rAja-kuTumbam--royal household, going madonmatta--intoxicated with passion. But then later he went on destroying even those kings who were not such (madonmatta), and finally got defeated in the hands of RAmA--thus the story goes differently.

It was only during KRShNa's time were the Asuras committing atrocities in the form of many kings. In addition, as original Asuras, there were NarakAsura, BahAsura, and BANAsura.

In this way, some original Asuras, and Asuras in human form as kings who were in much greater number than these, during KRShNa's time were doing hAni--harm/damage to the lokam--world, and the Dharma mArgas.

But then the general public who were in far greater numbers than these (Asuras and Asuric kings) did not in general go off the dharma paths. As mentioned (a while ago), although there were people in the jana-samUham--community, who were those who did only vaRaTTu--(Tamil) meaningless/ill-advised karmas, those who followed krUra upAsana--bloddy/cruel worship, and those who did hypocrisy--pretended, as possessing jnAna without actually attaining it, more than them in large numbers were the people, who went only in the right paths.

Even then, considering that the worst might spread as disease, KRShNa ParamAtma, keeping Arjuna in focus, did upadesham of the pravRtti and nivRtti dharma, polishing them very well.

Still, it can't be said that he took avatar only for this (purpose). Having many other uddesham--purpose, only, did he take avatar as a pUrNAvatAra--complete avatar, with full Ishvara-shakti--divine power. The bhUmi--earth, suffered by the adhikrama--invasion, of the Asuras who were disguised as kings. Goddess BhUmAdevI went to BrahmA and complained. He in turn took her and the Deva-samUham--Deva community, to MahAviShNu and appealed to him. Only listening to that, MahAviShNu did KRShNAvatAra--thus it is narrated in the BhAgavatam.

To relieve the earth of its burden of the Asuras in the form of kings by destroying them, to do upadesham of good ways, and along with these two (purposes), to do and show exhaustively all that is possible as a deivam--God, and manuShya--man,--in this way only he came with pUraNa-shakti--complete power, in that avatAram.

• From stealing butter then get spanked by the cowherd women, and then doing rAsakrIDA--rasa dance/sport, with those very women;

• big acts such as the Govardhana-uddhAraNam--holding up the Govardhana hill on a finger, vishvarUpa-darshanam--giving darshan of his universal, all-pervasive form;

• small acts such going as a messenger, and driving a chariot;

• doing anugraha--divine favours, to people like the PANDavas, DraupadI, and Kuchela, so much as to make us wonder if bhakta-vAtsalyam--parental love towards devotees, can go to ways and levels;

thus he did whatever many things, in such great number. Upadesha was a mukhya kArya--chief task, in what he did, but it was not his full task. While he sported in the bhUlokam--world of earth, in the nara-veSha--guise of man, only after three-fourths of his lifetime had gone by, did he open his mouth as jnAnAchArya--teacher of knowledge, for giTopadesham--teaching of GItA.

Later, before finishing his naralIlA and returning to paramapadam--highest state, he did another upadesha to a parama-bhakta called Uddhava svAmi. It has the name 'Uddhava GItA'. For the upadesha done to Arjuna, based on the one who did upadesha, the name 'Bhagavad GItA' came into vogue. For the upadesha done as the last act in the avatar, however, the name 'Uddhava GItA' came into vogue, based on one who listened to it.

Kali Yuga: in the beginning and later
pages 325-327

Kali Yuga was born a short time before KRShNa took up his paramapada-ArohaNam--ascension to his highest abode. Nevertheless, without letting the world fall into the worst immediately, what BhagavAn had done, were giving a helping hand, propping up, saving and lifting (the world from falling). In a way to make the anuShTAnam of the less powerful people of the Kali Yuga possible, VedaVyAsa BhagavAn who was an aMshAvatAra,

• classified the Vedas (into four collections). By them, by their very karma-kANDa, and jnAna-kANDa vidhis--injunctions, he secured the pravRtti-nivRtti mArgas from being crushed and struck off.

• In addition, collecting in essence, the adhyAtma tattvas--principles of the Self, which across all the upaniShads remained spread, unfolded, and scattered, he gave it to the world as 'Brahma SUtra', like threading maNis--beads of gems, in a sUtra--string, and thus did visheSha upakAra--special assistance, for the jnAna mArgam--nivRtti dharma.

• For the Anmika mEmbADu--(Tamil)spiritual development, of sarvajana--all the people, he gave the eighteen purANas in anugraham--divine favour, and gave pOshAkku--(Tamil)nourishment/sustenance, to the Bhakti mArga too.

By all these (efforts), even after Kali was born, for two thousand, two thousand and five hundred years, people were mostly going in the right path.

There is a definite computation (of time) that Kali (Yuga) was born in 3102 BCE. Since in the saMkalpam--ritual vow/declaration, done in the vaidika karma--Vedic rite, pratidinam--daily,

• from which year (vayas--age) in BrahmA's Ayus--lifetime,
• which kalpa in that (age), which manvantara in that kalpa,
• which year in which Yuga of the chaturyuga--four Yuga, cycle in that manvantara,
• until which ayanam--solstice, Rtu--season, mAsam--month, pakSham--fortnight, tithi--(lunar) day in that year,

as that day is mentioned up-to-date, it is known without any scope for doubt as to when the Kali Yuga began. It was in this time (of Kali Yuga) that the lokam--world, was going to some extent in the right path only, for nearly two thousand years, that is, until 2500 years before today (see note 01).

Even then, since in BhagavAn's sport, it was constituted to give adhikAram--power to rule, to Kali PuruSha, in (the name of) Yuga Dharma, later, his cheShTa--mischievous behaviour, started increaing.

2500 years before today

ParamAchArya has thus mentioned Shankara's avatAra kAlam--time of avatar, in the opinion that it happened 2500 years ago. Details in his exposition titled "shrI Shankara's kAla nirNayam--ascertainment of shrI Shankara's age".

The great danger of Kali: disguise of allurement
pages 327-329

As to what is the mukhya--chief great danger in this Yuga, it is that a dangererous vastu--article/subject/concept, without being visible as such, coming in the disguise as a very good one and alluring (the people). Only when the danger in something is known as danger, can we safeguard ourselves from it? And if we are dhIra--intelligent and brave, we can also have a fight with and keep it in under control?

• In the pUrva Yugas, when the Asuras appeared as apAya hetu--cause of destruction, their krUra rUpam--cruel form, and the cruel acts they did explicitly--when these were known to the people, they tried to keep away (from the Asuras). Still, when these Asuras fell on them snatching (things and lives), the people prayed to BhagavAn with the thought "we can't have a fight with these forces". BhagavAn too took avatAra and did saMhAram--annihilation of the Asuras. Just as when a thorn stings (the flesh), its removal restores immediate wholesomeness (to the affected part) thereafter, the jana samUham--community (I include the deva samUham--Devas community too), became normal and was going in the right path.

• Even in KRShNAvatAra, it was possible to differentiate the people such as KaMsa, sishupAla, JarAsaMdha, and Duryodhana as duShTas--bad, who caused danger to dharma.

It was thus in the pUrva Yugas that different duShTa groups did hiMsa--injury, and after BhagavAn took avatar and annihilated it, the lokam--world became normal. And there were mahAns--sages in great numbers, who preached the righteous path. After the duShTas were destroyed, they would start their work in nirbhayam--free from danger. There was no necessity for the BhagavatavatAra himself, either by doing upadesham to the people or showing it by living, to establish the pravRtti-nivRtti mArgas. Still, if the avatars did take place but did not do duShTa-nigraham--suppress evil, the duShTas would have completely destroyed these two mArgas. In this rIti--manner, the avatars did rakShaNam--protection, of the Veda Dharma.

In those times, the evil did not come in the disguise of good and brought the sarva janas--all the people, under their control by alluring them. The evils (on the other hand), instead of looking vazhIkaraNa--bewitching, and acting with priyam--love, remained to be known as evil in spaShTam--clear perception, and tried to bring the people under their control. Therefore, knowing it well as bad, the people could remain resolved not to submit.

In Kali (Yuga), the group of Asuras and the RAkShasa jAti do have not a separate existence. That is, as such outside the manuShya jAti--human race. Understand it, no? Only inside the brains of the manuShyas--humans, have the Asuras and RAkShasas entered! In this Yuga, the adharma shakti--evil power, instead of remaining outside in bautikam--as living beings, and attacking people, have entered their buddhi as evil chitta-vRttis--mental modifications!

Founders of new religions
pages 329-331

Many people came, inciting and stirring up this (adharma shakti in mind), to push the people deep into evil. These people also did not seem as krUra Asuras. They appeared in a way that everyone believed them as only thinking about the people's hitam--welfare, teaching them the satyam--truth, and living only to safeguard their AtmA. Some of them were also seen having good education, knowledge, debating skills, and high shIlam--moral conduct, in personal life. In vAstavam--actually, their purpose might have been good. Even in what they taught, there was no absence of some good aMshas--aspects.

• Still, when looked at in totality, what everyone of them said and taught, was in virodha--opposition to the Veda mArgam, which systematized in pUrNam--completely, the pravRtti-nivRtti dharmas for the genuine AtmAbhivRddhi--spiritual welfare, of the people.

Although their teachings looked good superficially, if one gets inside it, they were such as to do no sahAyam--help, to both the iham--this world, and param--the other world. Even though it was such, one should not speak low of the respect of those who taught this way. We need not also be in doubt of their good purpose. Some people among them would even have been such as having received a great personal anubhavam--experience.

• Still, in their teaching it to the others, they made these other people leave the Veda mArgam that was the royal path for all the iha-para kShemas--welfare, and go in lanes, holes and wild tracts. Thus, at that time, people had fallen in the dark jungle of ajnAnam--ignorance. It is described thus: "ajnAnandar-gahana-patitAn" (this verse will be explained in full later). 'gahanam' means a dense and dark forest.

Thus, many people started appearing at that time, making the common people leave the Veda Dharma.

As to who those people were, they were the ones who founded many (new) matas--religions, and siddhAntas--doctrines; or those who made the abhiprAyas--opinions, that had already sprouted just a little somewhere but had gone covered with earth, now flourish and grow into big siddhAntas, by manuring them.

• Whoever they were, they were the ones who made siddhAntas, which were in virodham--opposition, to the Veda Mata--Vedic Religion, that was SanAtana Dharma--Universal/Eternal Dharma, founded by the Rishis on Ishvara PreraNa--God's directions.

Among these people, who came as the mUla-puruShas--founders of matas--religions and siddhAnta pravartaka--promotors of new doctrines, there are two classes.

• One class did not oppose the Vedas altogether, and did not say that their doctrine was made in refutation of the Vedas. Whereas in vAstavam--reality, their doctrine, unlike the Vedas classifying as pravRtti-nivRtti and then linking them as one after the other, was such as to take only one (of the two mArgas), or only a few aspects of the one (mArga) they took, and conclude it as the final.

• The other class were those who created new religions, in total and explicit refutation of the Vedas. The religions Bauddha, Jaina and ChArvAka are of this kind. Just as it was named Bauddha and Jaina, with reference to their mata-sthApakas Buddha and Jina, to speak of the ChArvAka too (using the name of its sthApaka), it should be called BArhaspatam. Since it was a matam--religion, established by BRhaspati, (it was) BArhaspatam.

hi saidevo,
charvakas called as barhaspthyam...sage vatsyana is the founder
of charvaka,,,acoording to charvaka....we can call them as
materialstic or naasthika matam....a beautiful quote ...
acoording to charvaka.....


according to them live and enjoy....there is no moksha...
only simple death itself is moksha......but very reality in this modern world.....even there are many charvakas are available nowadays...
may be many in this forum tooo...

Bauddha, ShramaNa religions and the Hindu religion
pages 331-335

That I now criticize the Bauddha and Jaina matas--religions in my speech might make you feel sorry. Because you would have read highly about Buddha and Jaina in our history books. It is saMdeham--doubtful, if about any other mata puruShas--religious greats, so much is spoken about with such highness in the pATha pustakas--school text books.

In what they say as GAndhIyam and the principles of progress in tatkAlam--present time, since the Bauddha, Jaina religions have given a place (in their doctrines) to ahiMsA--not-injuring,

and giving all the rights equally to sakala janas--all the people, without any varNAshrama-bheda--class distinctions,

they are given such heights (in the school text books).

And since there is himsA--injury, in yajnam--fire sacrifices, and the people are classified according to their birth and given various adhikAras--authority/eligibility, has the lesser abhiprAyam--opinion, risen towards the Hindu Matam.

But then, only with careful attention to things such as that

• for the jana samudAyam--society of people, to grow and progress properly, various types of kAryas--actions/work, need to be done, and that

• people are of different kinds in deha-rIti--bodily, and mano-rIti--mentally,

and deciding that

• the same type of dharma should not be prescribed
• the same type of anuShThAnas--observances/practices, and works should not be given

to all the people, the varNa-vibhAgam--class distinctions ('caste divisions' as referred to in practice), has been worked out in our Matam--religion,

• to facilitate everyone (of all the classes) to progress upward (spiritually). This is a social order.

In order that all the works and services required for the jana samudAyam are done in thalaimuRai-kramam--the course of generations, without any competitions or shortfall, they apportioned the kAryas--actions, in this order.

In the same way, for the individual man to have orderly progress in life,

• to facilitate his going up stage after stage in pakvam--maturity, through brahmacharyam, gArhasthyam, vAnaprastham and saMnyAsam--bachelorhood, householdership, hermitic life, and asceticism,

the Ashrama-vibhAgam--division of life stages, was done.

If lofty dharmas such as ahiMsA are prescribed as compulsive anuShThAna--observance, for sakala--everyone, it would only be that no one would be able to observe it.

• Therefore, if a class is marked as the ideal among the people, and only for that class of people it (a lofty dharma) is prescribed as a must, they would preserve it with alertness and a feeling of pride;

• and the others too will surely follow it, at least to some extent, with the thought 'we should also try out, in accordance with this ideal';

it is with this idea that the dharmas were classified.

If we look at it in pratyakSham--as visible reality, today

• only in the Bauddha deshas--Buddhist countries, even the bhikShus--Buddha sages, do take mAMsa bhojanam--meat as food.

• Even in those places, as sanyam--army, yuddham--war, in the rAjAngga-rIti--manner of the government, and murder and robbery in the tani-manuShya-rIti--manner of individual man, do aggessive incidents continue to happen.

• Even in our country, except Ashoka, those who were Bauddha, Jaina kings did not remain without indulging in wars. Still, only at the samayas--times, when they remained in a dilemma, feeling guilty that this was not suitable for their religious doctrine, were there no powerful empires and the people from anya desha--foreign countries, have invaded (our land). Later, even they (those Bauddha, Jaina kings) had to fight in wars. That is, they were constrained to go against their religion.

Thus in the religions where it was prescribed that 'all dharmas are for all people',

• there was not even a facility as in our religion which classified the dharmas, so at least one specific class could live their dharma in firmness, and, motivated by their example, the others to go in that dharma to some extent,

• it has happened that all the people are equal only in giving up their dharma and thus come into a great doSha--religious deficienty, that all of them disregarded their mata-vidhis--religious regulations.

To show that in the Vaidika Matam--religion of the Vedas, the precepts of dharmas and kAryas being classified in adhikAra bheda--eligibility differences, has given Atma-shreyas--spiritual welfare, not just to some single jAti--caste, but to sakala--everyone, it is enough to mention only one thing:

• Only in this one religion have the mahAns and jnAnis born in great numbers in sakala jAtis--all castes, in every caste (practically), and the honour from the whole world celebrating only our country as the Land of saints has come to us.

• Only in our country, as mahonnata kalAchAram--the greatest civilization, where the social life has been stable and sustained for several thousands of years,

‣ and as classified in our Religion, it was made possible for the many vargas--classes, in our samUham--society, to do their work properly, so that the entire society could progress regularly in kaTTukkOppu--(Tamil) cohesive solidarity,

‣ while all the great societal traditions such as the Babylonian civilization, Egyptian civilization, and Greek civilization, which in the Adi-kAlam--ancient times, were in their aggressive glory (koDikaTTippaRa~ndha) had all gone vanishing without a trace,

‣ if this Hindu civilization alone, in spite of receiving countless attacks from without and within, is still remaining with jIvan--life, in defiance,

to give this (civilization) thus a shakti in special, what is there in it which is not there in the other civilizations?

If this subject is done Alochanam of--considered, Ara amara--(Tamil) in leisurely settlement of thoughts, in naDunilai--(Tamil) impartiality, the kAraNam--reason, would be known as the varnAshrama vibhAgam--occupational classification, which is present only in this civilization.

That is, only this arrangement has, on the one side

• giving poShaNa--nourishment, to tani-manuSha-Atma-abhivRtti--individual man's spiritual development, has made these many mahAns--sages, to appear (in this civilization/country);

• If one class is reserved for the ideal stage, isn't it natural that a number of mahAns appear in that class, and people from other classes follow them doing prayatna--persevering efforts, and (many of them) attain a similar state?

• Although it is the people from a single class, the jnAnam, bhakti, shAntam and anbu--knowledge, devotion, tranquillity and love they attained, without stopping as the belonging to that class only, radiates throughout the samUham--society, and paves for mahAns to appear in all the classes.

and on the other side,

• only this varnAshrama-vibhAgam has secured the great jana samudAyam--population of this desham--country, as a great tradition and civilization where the jIvashakti--life force, has been sustained (throughout the ages).

himsA--injury, in the yajnas
pages 335-337

If the Vedas have given the yajna karmas wherein it appears that there is the aMsha--share, of himsA--injury, to that specific varNa which is formed specially for a sAttvika--virtuous life, will it be one without any nyAya--justice/fairness?

• The ShAstram--scripture says that by yajna-bali--sacrifice in fire rituals, certain deva shaktis--divine powers, get prIti--satisfaction, and do good for the lokam--world;

• and the sacrified animal too attains satgati--a good passage.

If it is asked that this be proved, if we ask back such persons, "Why don't you prove that this is not so?", what would they do?

In a ShAstram that arose solely in uddesham--purpose, of loka-kShemam--worldly welfare, and in a ShAstram that the world celebrates as teaching the loftiest positions in tattvArtha--spiritual principles, and AtmAnubhavam--spiritual experience, will there be prescribed unnecessarily thus--to do Ahuti--oblation, in agni--fire, a prANi--animal?

If in the name of yAga--oblation, had the brAhmAnas done prANi-vadha--killing animals, in large numbers and eaten them, it is certainly a fault. Still, except that some rAjA like BimbisAra for the Adambaram--fanfare of it, would have done it employing the brAhmaNas, in any yajna there is no avashyam--necessity, for this many prAni-bali--animal-sacrifice.

In evidence that it is a fault doing slaughter of animals in large numbers, there is an upAkhyAnam--incident, in BhAgavatam. A king named PrAcIna Barhis was there. He conducted yAgas--sacrifices large numbers of pashus--goats. NArada came down to stop it and impart him the right knowledge. One who came down, what he did was that, he showed the king a scene that was to take place in the svargam--heaven. In that scene is a large group of goats. Every goat has strong horns with sharp, iron caps. Instead of being sAdhu--well-disposed, those goats are ugra--fierce, like the tiger and lion, whetting their horn-caps and getting ready to tear down at something.

"aiaiyo--an exclamation of fear, why are these animals doing thus in viparItam--perversely? What are they in mustIpu--so prepared and ready, to tear down?" asked PrAcIna Barhis.

To that NArada said, "unakkAkat-thANDA--hey for you only, are these animals waiting! These are only the goats you gave in yajna-bali--slaughtered in sacrifice, beyond any kaNakku-vazhakku--count and tradition. It is only vAstavam--real, that they have attained svarga-prApti--reaching the heaven. Even then, since your doing excessive jIva-hati--killing living beings, is a pApam--sin, they are waiting as to when you would arrive there so they could tear down your bowels." This is the BhAgavata-kathA.

What the brAhmaNas ate was just a kunRimaNi--seed of the creeper crab's eys, and that for the respect as yajna-prasAdam--divine gift of sacrifice--not to fill up their stomach (with it)*.

I came to talk about the tatkAla--current, thinking and celebrating the Bauddha and Jaina religions as higher to Hinduism, for the principles of samatvam--equality, and ahimsA--non-injury.

Note: *For more details on yajna, check this speech by ParamAchArya:
Is Sacrificial Killing Justified?
Is Sacrificial Killing Justified? from the Chapter "The Vedas", in Hindu Dharma : kamakoti.org:

Not for criticism of other religions, but that there should be no criticism of own religion!
pages 337-340

I have not at all come here to criticise those religions. No religion need to be criticised for the sake of it. If in every matam--religion, for many centuries, there have been different janakkUTTam--(Tamil) crowd of people, they should have been that way, only by seeing some niRaivu--satisfaction/gladness/fullness, in those religions?

Whatever the religion,--by teaching such things as one should not go selfish, should reduce desires, should be kind, should be truthful in conduct,--reveal something above the worldly pleasures exprienced by this body?

As mahAns--great people, in all religions, with shIlaM--good conduct, prema--love, tyAgam--sacrifice, and an own experience obtained according to their principles and their anuShTAnam--rigours, have many people arrived. And philosophers who are men of knowledge, going with dIrgham--depth, in tattva-chodanam--Self-inquiry, have been there in matams like Bauddham, MImAMsA, NyAya, and SAMkhya. In the books of NAgArjuna (a Bauddha), I have myself an interest.

But then if (following) any religion is not wrong, the question is that if only our religion can be said to be so (wrong to follow). Without going in the manner of fad--craze, as 'ours' in svaya abhimAnam--personal high opinion, even if it is viewed in nishpakShapAtam--impartially, as I showed now (above):

• More than in any other religion, only in this religion, throughout countless generations, more number of mahAns, that is, great people who obtained svAnubhUti--Self experience, by this matAnuShTanam--rigours of this religion, have appeared.

• It is known that more than any other religion, only this religion has preserved with jIvashakti--power of living, a matchless nAgarika samudAyam--civilization of people, for a very long time.

• How can we remain without saying it that only this religion of ours, without having it as a single, identical arrangement for everyone, for people of different kinds, in ways that suit them, kAryam--actions, AchAram--life discipline, and an iShTa-mUrti--personal god, have been given place to,

so an excellent path has been paved for the jIva at all levels, for obtaining the highest possible anubhavams--experiences, for that level, and then moving with saukhyam--comfort, from one level to the next higher, until the parama satyam--supremely real, state, where ultimately the jIvAtman becomes the paramAtman, is reached?

• If all the religions are to be praised that they cause to obtain something above the sAdhAraNa laukika anubhavams--ordinary worldly experiences,

even higher than what they cause to obtain, only our religion makes it possible to obtain the ultimate niRaivu--(Tamil) satisfaction, of uttomottama jIva-brahma-aikyam--most superior, soul-God-unity,

so for that fulfilment, it is only right to praise/celebrate this religion above all others?

• When there are such unique distinctions, and when the other religions seek to criticise this religion, without understanding either the great (ultimate) satisfaction of the parama-tAtparyam--supreme object (of Self-Realization), or the sampradAyas--tradition, that give a satisfaction from time to time and are located in the middle stage of the path to the ultimate,

can we just keep quiet that all religions are high but only our religion which is higher than them should remain receiving khaNDanam--criticism/opposition, from them all?

• In a religion that gives it as its final teaching that there is no difference between the JIvan and Brahman, if there is this much varNAshrama vidhyAsam--differences, without thoroughly researching the reasons for it, when the others criticise our religion as one that creates distinctions between humans, should we just keep quiet without researching the truths behind it and explaining them to the others?

• Buddha was a great man, Jina (MahAvIra) was a great man; but then even they did not refrain from criticising our Vaidika matam, thinking 'there is good in everything; let us go in samarasam--compromise/reconciliation; why should we do khaNDanam of the Vaidika matam' (right)?

If that be such, and when we know the reason very well that their criticising this religion is not correct, it is only right that we should take the efforts we can, to criticise their criticism?

• In the foreign countries where there is no right Adi-mata-siddhAntam--original religious principles, as suitable to the pakva-sthiti--maturity status, kalAchAram--culture, of the people of those countries, and as one that does upakAram--assistance/favour, for their some inner satisfaction, (the religions) Bauddham (Buddhism), Christianity and Islam are there. Let us not have any AkShepaNam--objection, to them at all.

But when we have a religion that gives a path for people in all stages and leads everyone to the level of supreme satisfaction, if those religions come here to invade us, how could it be that we should not object it?

• We are sitting here to listen to AchAryAL's story. The whole world celebrates him as a great man. Even those who have abhiprAya-bheda--difference of opinion, with him, praise him as a mahA-buddhimAn--great man of intelligence and wisdom, a tyAgin--selfless man, who worked incessantly with dedication that he had a 'mission' for the people, and in many other dinusu--(Tamil) ways.

What did such a man do as his chief work? Only that he did kaNDanam--criticism, of the other matams that prevailed during his time and made SanAtana Dharma shine again with jIvan--life? Only for that purpose did that avatAra take place? If this is the case, how can it be that I should do upanyAsam--speech, about AchAryAL without criticising the other religions in any way?

• There is nothing wrong in criticising, showing the right reasons. It would be wrong only if it is done in vitaNDA-vAdam--frivolous controversy. If we have fair and justified reasons and points, we too should seek to criticise the others. In the same way, they too should do it.

(In doing kaNDanam,) The mistake lies in one of two modes.

‣ One, to do vitaNDA, without showing correct reasons.
‣ Another, to seek to criticise with dveSham--hatred/repugnance/enmity, in our mind.

Even with those who have different abhiprAyam--opinion, without any sort of dveSham, we should criticise only the abhiprAyams, with prema--love. We should conduct ourselves with the manobhAvam--mental frame, 'It appears such to their buddhi. Let us tell them what occurs to us; and also listen to what occurs to them. Then let us both analyse and consider both the views'.

The samarasam--feelings of reconciliation, should be there ONLY in this prema--love, and NOT in the principles. If in principles we keep quiet that way (in samarasam), it would only end in the others climbing and sitting on our head and make us 'EmAnda chONagiris'--betrayed fools. The propriety is in fighting for the principles that appear satyam--true, to us.
pages 340-343

Doing AkShepaNa of--reviling, the Veda Dharmam which remains as one that includes sakala siddhAnta--all principles and doctrines, or taking only one aMsham--part, from it and maintaining that as the pUrNa dharmam--complete path, that some people of knowledge and discipline spread it as (different) siddhAntas in the Kali (Yuga) is mentioned in our shAstra-purANas as the kRtrimam--falsified action, done by the Kali PuruSha. This action is explained as what-is-not-good coming in disguise as what-is-good, alluring the people to follow the aMshas--parts, anuShTAnas--rigours, principles and lifestyle in veda-vRtta--contrary to the Vedas.

• If it be difficult to talk about people like Buddha and Jina as those who gave an alternative path with full knowledge and heart, only to prevent the people from taking the right path, let it not be spoken in that way at all. So far as they are concerned, so far as the people who attained a state similar to theirs are concerned, it need not be said that what they taught are what-is-not-good.

• For people who, like these great men, can control their senses and sit in tapas--meditation, remaining in complete ahiMsa, love, and discipline with the firm determination 'let this sharIram--body, go; I should not get up without attaining lakShya-siddhi--accomplishment of the goal',

the Vedas and the vaidika-anuShTAnas are really not necessary at all. That Veda itself has mentioned this.

"For one who has become a jnAni, a father is no more a father, a mother is no more a mother, worlds are no more worlds, the Devas no more gods, (and) the Vedas no more Vedas."

It is there in an UpaniShad, which are the shruti-shiras (crown of Vedas) (BRhadAraNyaka Upanishad, 4.3.22).

• But then even among such UpaniShads, in the ChAndogya upaniShad that gives 'tat tvam asi' as the most superior jnAna-lakShayam--goal of knowledge, in its concluding verse (8.15.1), where it is described as to who attains a sthAnam--position, in which there is no return to this world,

it is mentioned that he gets that eligibility/position, only by doing the Veda adhyayana-anuShTanas--study and practice of Vedas, according to the prescribed rule, living a family life, and by firmly holding his indriyas--senses, without any chalanam--movement, and observing ahiMsa--non-injury at all places except where it occurs in the Veda karmas.

In other words, our Matam--religion, has not prescribed the dharmas meant for a Buddha or a Jina to everyone.

• The very greatness of our Dharma lies in giving varied sets of dharma in stage after stage from the foundation level, in order that a man can in the end become a jnAni.

• What is even greater, it is mentioned in our Matam that the jnAni too should set an example by living a common spiritual life, so that he can take into his fold even the person at the fundamental level, and guide everyone by holding the hand, right from the position everyone is in situated life.

Specifically, in the GItA, BhagavAn has emphasized it well (see note 01).

• Thus in our Matam, as proper to practical life, and suitable in mano-tattva-rIti--psychological limits, when it is taught that even a jnAni should as a guide to the people set an example of their own dharma,

in direct contradiction to this,

if a man creates a siddhAnta that the jnAni's dharma should be prescribed for even the sAmAnya janas--ordinary people, however great the person is in his individual life, since by that siddhAntam people's Atma-kSeham--spiritual welfare gets ruined, so it uddesham--purpose, of this result, it is only necessary to do nirAkaraNam--repudiation, of it (that siddhAntam)?


01. Bhagavad GItA

na buddhibhedaM janayedaj~jAnAM karmasa~ginAm |
joShayetsarvakarmANi vidvAnyuktaH samAcharan ||3.26||

From Shankara's GItA BhAShya, translated by Swami Gambhirananda:

3.26 The enlightened man should not create disturbance in the beliefs of the ignorant, who are attached to work. Working, while himself remaining deligent [Some translate yuktah as, 'in the right manner'. S. takes it in the sense of Yoga yuktah, merged in yoga.-Tr.], he should make them do [Another reading is yojayet, meaning the same as josayet.-Tr.] all the duties.


tasmAchchhAstraM pramANaM te kAryAkArya vyavasthitau |
GYAtvA shAstra vidhAnoktaM karma kartumihArhasi ||16.24||

From Shankara's GItA BhAShya, translated by Swami Gambhirananda:

16.24 Therefore, the scripture is your authority as regards the determination of what is to be done and what is not to be done. After understanding (your) duty as presented by scriptural injunction, you ought to perform (your duty) here.

In his lecture 'GItA's injunction' under the Section 'AchAram' in part 3 of the 'Deivatthin Kural', ParamAchArya says: "Those who seek to reform too need the GItA, but they simply go hiding such things in it. Or they go a step further and say that these are all interpolations!"--sd
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