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Thread: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

  1. #11
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    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    Namaste Anirudh

    Sometimes you amaze me with good insight, this is an amazing question.

    I like what Satay said, also.

    I have difficulties when hearing about Dvaita / Advaita from others, reading something from internet Vedantists or in a book, etc.. But my dilemma is, I honestly listen to one, pretend Advaita, and it connects - makes complete sense, amazing in terms of the main points. Then I hear from a Dvaita view or realization. I feel, amazing, totally connects, the main points inspire as the other and connect as true.

    Then I stop... wait, they BOTH connected. Both true. But then some act like perhaps one counters the other. Monism, dualism, but SD, both connect as true for me, now I feel sort of "confused", but maybe that is not the word, perhaps "both work for me, so I cannot commit to one or the other, I like both so ..." ... so I pick up what I like, and in happiness read about Ramayana. Or a Tamil saint. Or Trailinga Swami.

    So then I spend a lot of time in the Ramayana and other Histories and Hinduism books, and not much Vedanta. But only because both Dvaita / Advaita clicks with me, I think both seem true and I don't know (or perhaps don't care to) predicate one over the other.

    Of course, I only mean in terms of the basics, principle points and examples of each philosophy. I do not know the details.

    Om Namah Sivaya

  2. #12
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    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    One thing I can say with my new 'experience' reading Vishishtadvaita Vedanta is that 'it is definitely not for the average reader' and that includes me. Or another way to put it, one must have true interest in Vedanta itself (and not merely an intellectual curiosity to know what is Vishishtadvaita like myself). I read through about 40 pages of introduction just to understand the difference between Iswara, Cit and Acit. Then I skipped a lot many pages (nearly a 100 pages) on 'what is knowledge' and related topics because I couldn't understand head or tail anything in it, was too boring and for every VA implication, there were atleast 10 pages dedicated to refuting the other schools of thought as Nyaya-Vaisesika, Buddhism, Charvaka and Advaita. Now I am into the 'doctrine of jiva' and after a real honest struggle, I understood that according to Vishishtadvaita, 'effort' is a special state of 'knowledge', and the knowledge itself is an attribute of the Jiva, who thus serves as the substrate for effort. Thus he (jiva) becomes the 'doer' and the 'karta' and thus also becomes the 'bhokta' or the 'enjoyer' of his deeds. And that, the results of the enjoyment (of pain or pleasure) make modifications to the attributive knowledge, because as we reiterate the point again, the effort was a special state of the attribute of knowledge and thus the jiva becomes immutable in Vishishtadvaita.

    Now I am on to reading about 'free will' next, and I can say I gleaned the above knowledge after reading really with hard focus and going back and forth between paragraphs and all I have decided is to repeat my skip this and that/read with focus that which sounds/arouses my intellectual curiosity mode to read the rest of the book.

    Will this process yield me with an understanding of Vishishtadvaita? I guess I have to re-read the book several times or go through several works from different sources to answer that.

    So finally, the conclusion is, "it is not for the average reader".
    jai hanuman gyan gun sagar jai kapis tihu lok ujagar

  3. #13
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    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    Dhanyawaada to all HDF who have shared their wisdom. From this discussion two distinct view point came to surface.

    1) These are all philosophies. By learning them we get a chance to understand the mindset of its authors, in the process we elevate our spiritual state to a higher plane

    2) To understand these philosophies one should be spiritually matured, otherwise the knowledge of these philosophies may do good to the practitioner in the initial stages but in the long run will leave him more confused or make him rigid and get stuck to a specific path.

    For a beginner say like me or Viraja ji who didn't had the patience, these philosophies wont do any good other than increasing the ability to share few passages in a discussion or in a debate.

    When the devotee or the practitioner is spiritually matured, he will not have the urge to skip pages or get connected to every thing like Shiva Fan ji feels.

    Although I am unable to connect with soteriology view point of Shiv Somashekar ji, I fully agree with him that the ordinary man need not have know this to fulfill his day to day spiritual needs.

    I am no way concluding that these philosophies are not necessary. They are absolutely necessary. But why it is necessary?

    The inherent inquisitive nature of human to understand himself or to find answers to the very basic but complex question "who am i" can be answered by understanding these philosophies. But as people come in different shapes and size for some till they reach a particular stage knowing these philosophies will not do any good.

    I can relate this with Maslow's need hierarchy. When you reach or about to reach the zenith of that pyramid, you ll be naturally inclined towards these philosophies.

    So I opine that we can not discard this. Like Satay ji has rightly mentioned one of the motivating factor to learn would be take it as a personal challenge.

    Once again, I thank every one who has shared the wisdom. Between yesterday and today with the help of your replies I am in a better frame of mind to appreciate these gems our forefathers have given us. Also I understood, doubts cropped into me because I am not yet ready for this.



    N.B. My sincere apologies if my statements have disturbed any one.
    Anirudh...

  4. #14

    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    ~~~~~
    Last edited by smaranam; 14 March 2013 at 04:36 AM.
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

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    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    Namaste Smaranam ji,

    I treat Shreeman Naaraayan as my friend. He is always with me.

    I don't think I am possessive about him. I know for sure that he wont leave me come what may. I ll be possessive only if i have a doubt that he ll leave me. Also I don't understand the part of selfish and selfless love. I just love my friend, no matter he showers pain or pleasantries.

    Quite recently underwent one more life threatening episode. Pain that I endured can not be explained. Yet I thanked him for having given me the grit to face it.

    He has made me to realize that the pain I had to undergo are the fruits of my own karma. And he has given enough strength to accept it without cribbing. But I do tirelessly fight for justice if i am convinced that some one has cheated or abused me. It ll be eccentric to note, but I offered my pain and tear drops to him while I was enduring the tough time.

    So to conceptualize your views, I have to read your reply at least few more times. I ll write back to you in a couple of days.
    Anirudh...

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    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    Namaste Smaranam

    If you don't mind me asking, because I have been thinking so for some time, is that avatar of yours a devotee of the Lord? What an amazingly wonderful little one that is! That one is BLESSED, there is no question about it.

    Thank you for your wise thoughts.

    Namaste Anirudh

    Whatever you want, is yours. It is obvious now. Look at what Smaranam said. You can be the next Smaranam. Narayana has been with you for a long time, this is very obvious now. Good luck on your path with admiration for how intelligent you are. India has given us all, so much. Westerners such as myself are very grateful.

    Om Namah Sivaya

  7. #17

    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    ~~~~~
    Last edited by smaranam; 14 March 2013 at 04:36 AM.
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

  8. #18
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    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    Namaste,

    Satay is right. For day-2-day life, philosophies do not matter much. if you have a goal in life i.e. if you are mumukshu, then you will automatically attracted to one path. Some like to worship God with Das bhava (hanuman), some with sakha bhava (govAliyAs, sudama), some with with prem bhava (radha), some simply worship like Vibhishana (which may automatically fall under any one bhava mostly das bhava). Some like ot meditate on brahman (formless God). Mandulya karika talks that Atman is Brahman and OM is Brahman (if I am correct).

    Unless you wish to do PhD, there is no need to study all paths and beliefs.

    You may have missed the party, but even learned members of HDF, will keep fighting over supremacy and to prove something. There is nothing to prove. Truth is beyond proof. All we have to do is realize. Rama was, is and will be there. We just have to know him, have his darshan. So is the case with atman.

    Contrasting statements made by saints of different paths will give you more confusion and clarity. Better just be a small guy, a maun bhakta like Hanuman, who submerged his version of Ramayana, so that valmiki's version is well acknowledged.

    For day-2-day like simple family customs or simple worship of God, doing pooja, observing varata, fasting, etc do not need one to follow a path / belief system. But if you want moksha, then things change. Normal perspective of this world has to be changed, be it any path.

    Aum
    Only God Is Truth, Everything Else Is Illusion - Ramakrishna
    Total Surrender of Ego to SELF is Real Bhakti - Ramana Maharshi

    Silence is the study of the scruptures. Meditation is the continuous thinking of Brahman which is to be meditated upon. The complete negation of both by knowledge is the vision of truth – sadAcAra-14 of Adi SankarAcArya

    namah SivAya vishnurUpAya viShNave SivarUpiNe, MBh, vanaparva, 3.39.76

    Sanskrit Dict | MW Dict | Gita Super Site | Hindu Dharma

  9. #19

    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    Quote Originally Posted by ShivaFan View Post
    If you don't mind me asking, because I have been thinking so for some time, is that avatar of yours a devotee of the Lord? What an amazingly wonderful little one that is! That one is BLESSED, there is no question about it.
    praNAm Shiva Fan (notice i do not add ji although i would very much like to as you are older, - simply because your id is a common noun - so is smaranam, Eastern Mind, WebImpulse etc. It is a rule i consistently follow)

    That little one - is actually a picture from the internet - and perhaps i need her parents' permission to make her my avatar picture. Her mother writes a blog and posts her pictures there.
    She is surprisingly just the little KAnhAli as i would like - just the kind of picture i was searching for.

    I am sure she is a devotee, and definitely BLESSED. Her mother has dressed her up as a gopi, taught her to pray, make garlands ...

    Perhaps i should not put her picture here, najar lag jayegi. Might remove it shortly.

    _/\_

    Hare KRshNa
    Last edited by smaranam; 01 March 2013 at 04:47 AM.
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

  10. #20

    Re: Why Should I learn Dvaita / Advaita / Vishitadvaita / etc

    Quote Originally Posted by Anirudh View Post
    Namaste,

    I know Raamaayana and Mahaabhaaratha. Thanks to DoorDarshan and Raajaji. I am learning Bhagavath Geetha (Gita Press) every day. Of late downloaded Hindi translations of both the epics which has the original Sanskrit text as well and started reading in my free time. Going by my available free time, I will be fully occupied with these scriptures at least for next two years.

    I was introduced to Advaita through a HDF friend. Out of curiosity learnt the mere basics of Dvaita, Advaita, Vishitadvaita etc etc through internet articles.

    With my basic knowledge I cannot make a concluding statement but I don't see any need to be even aware of these philosophies.

    I make my living by writing software programs, but never bothered to know beyond my specialized area. I never felt handicapped by not knowing machine language.

    Bhagavath Geetha is addressing all my spiritual questions. I know Shiva followers may not get connected to the epics or Geetha but still they will have Shiva specific scriptures.

    So my question to the learned members of HDF is, why should any one learn these philosophies. What is the advantage of knowing these philosophies.

    I might sound arrogant or ignorant, but I am puzzled with this question. Will these philosophies give me what Bhagavath Geetha cannot offer.
    these philosophies will became important when you start ask, "why am I born in this world?, If Lord Brahma created the universe then who did create Lord Brahma, what is my relation between God and me?, why am I a conscious being and the object is inert when all in universe including me and the object come from the same Brahman?...etc" (questions about ontological and epistemological thing)


    you can choose the philosophy and learn it and if you find the philosophy you have choosen make all of your doubts vanish then it is great.

    these philosophies are means of knowledge to know who you really are.
    only when you want to know who you really are then these philosophies are important. and the ultimate goal of these philosophies is liberation from samsara by dispelling the ignorance.

    Dvaitin and Advaitin have their own commentary on Bhagavad Gita, feel free to learn them, but usually someone will follow to choose Dvaita or Advaita or etc base on their inclination (influenced by the past life deeds)

    even you learn these or don't learn these, the world still rotate, the sun still shining, only your understanding about the reality will be different, the rest is still the same.

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