Monday, March 17, 2008

Brahma Sutra; Shankara Bhashya 3



You are telling me you want to enquire into Brahman.
Please tell me, Sir, Is this Brahman known or unknown?
Suppose we say it is unknown. Like gagabubu. Now please tell me how you are going to enquire into it. Even if foolhardily persist in such an enquiry, how will you how will you perceive it. Even if you perceive it how will you recognize it to be Brahman.
So unknown object like Brahman can never be enquired into.
Ok, now suppose you say it is known, then why waste both our time? If it is known, the let it be. Why all this mimamsa, all this words and analysis, and such. Even if it is known and you want to know it better then what has Shastra got to do with this?
Either way, Sir, your enquiry is useless.

Also, a subject matter like you are talking about, about identity between jiva and Brahman, simply does not exist – there is no vishayam here – there is no object here.
Why?
It is everyone’s common experience that he is a doer/enjoyer, a karta-bhokta.
No one has any doubt in his mind that when he talks, he is indeed a talker, when he writes that he is indeed a writer. And the Shruti says, Brahman is akarta, saakshi, etc.
How can doer and non-doer BOTH be the same entity?
I am solidly comprised of matter, of properties, of Gunas. And Shruti says Brahman is Nirguna.
I see mountains I cannot even imagine I could ever climb, I see the moon, stars and galaxies in a benumbing stretch of time and space - i couldnt be more insignifcant, and you say I am jagatkAranam Brahman?

So you are dealing with two things that could not be MORE opposed. viruddha dharmatvAt.

What you are postulating is similar to someone saying heat and cold are the same – there is no difference between them – I cannot accept this even as a hypotesis. So please, Sir, let us not begin this kind of ridiculous enquiry.

Lastly Sir, even if for a moment I grant you that there might be a subject such as what you are talking about, there is no prayojanam for this knowledge – there is no benefit of such a knowledge. Why? How can any knowledge directly produce any result? Suppose I have knowledge about how to make a aeroplane. Will a aeroplane get made simply like that? Suppose I have knowledge of engineering? Will I get any wealth without putting this to use?
Also, a bondage that is real does not go away simply by some form of knowledge. Imagine you have iron chains that are clasped onto your hands and feet – now by simply imagining that “I am free” will these chains go away. Some other “upaya”, some other means must be there for you to get free – you have to “do” something.

In this world, there is real hunger, real pain, real death, real sorrow, - it is pratyaksha – it is obvious to me and to everyone else on the planet. At an individual level I have physical and emotional pain. At the level of society there is dharma and adharma, there is punya-pApa, there is very real karma-phala which the VEdas themselves talk about. Just touch fire and you will know how real it is. - in fact a tiny mosquito-bite itself is enough.
And you say by knowledge - by an analysis of words in a text, all this will be rendered invalid, all THIS will be sublated! How can this be possible Sir? - please be reasonable. Knowledge can certainly be a useful entity, can be a help to you - sahakAri - I will grant you that.
For example one school of thought says, Satyam Jnanam, etc are kalyana gunas - divine qualities of Bhagwan – you have to know these qualities to do upasana or meditation.
Another school will say even by knowing “I am Brahman” is not enough. One has to put this knowledge to use – i.e. one has to meditate on this knowledge and then in the “white heat of meditation” one will be able to see that indeed my innermost self is Brahman.
So knowledge they say is like a cookbook – one then has to use this knowledge to make the meal. Or it is a instruction manual, one has to use this knowledge to then meditate or focus the mind. Or it is a roadmap – one then has to travel that route to reach the Atma.
In all of these instances, due to all of these reasons, we can see that merely jijnasa, mere knowledge of jiva being Brahman does not have any use; does not bear any fruit - phala asambhavAt.
Hence why undertake a detailed enquiry into this? You say “Atma is Brahman” – OK – let it be so it is already a siddha vishaya – like saying God is Great – how can such a knowledge ever negate anything? jNAnamAtrAt nivrtti ayOgAt - why enquire into shAstra to gain some knowledge which has no prayojanam – no utility . Let us look instead look into what other means may be there for me to gain everlasting happiness.

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