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Thread: Some misconceptions - Answers from VA pov

  1. #11

    Re: Some misconceptions - Answers from VA pov

    Some of the neos on this forum often cite Tulasi Das as evidence of the sameness of Shiva and Vishnu. But aside from the fact that Tulasi Das is not shruti, I have a friend initiated in the Ramanandi sampradaya who tells me that their view (including the view of Tulasi Das), is that Vishnu only is supreme, and that Shiva, though a highly-regarded deva, is not the same as Vishnu. What little I have read from Tulasi das seems to support that view.

    I agree fully that the doctrine of "all gods = the same god" is not Vedic by any stretch of the imagination. That being said, doesn't Adi Shankara equate Shiva and Vishnu with his pancopasana doctrine? I have heard it said that pancopasana might have been a later development, but am not aware of any statements by Adi Shankara one way or another on this specific issue.
    Philosoraptor

    "Wise men speak because they have something to say. Fools speak because they have to say something." - Plato

  2. #12

    Re: Some misconceptions - Answers from VA pov

    Quote Originally Posted by Sri Vaishnava View Post
    Many ithihAsAs like Tripura SamhArA and BAnAsura charitrA also contain meanings that establish the difference between shiva and vishnu. I do not care to post them here mainly because there is no scope for intelligent discussion amongst sarvamatha sammatha vAdhis.
    Please reconsider posting them here, since this is the Vishishtadvaita forum. The sarvamatha sammatha vadis will just have to accept that. I for one would be very interested in hearing more about the VA point of view regarding bAnAusra charitra.
    Philosoraptor

    "Wise men speak because they have something to say. Fools speak because they have to say something." - Plato

  3. #13
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    Re: Some misconceptions - Answers from VA pov

    Quote Originally Posted by philosoraptor View Post
    Please reconsider posting them here, since this is the Vishishtadvaita forum. The sarvamatha sammatha vadis will just have to accept that. I for one would be very interested in hearing more about the VA point of view regarding bAnAusra charitra.
    The bAnAsura charithra as a whole has extremely powerful inner meanings and encapsulates the entirety of Vishishtadvaita Vedanta in our tradition. I am reluctant to post it here because such meanings are to be revealed only to those interested, as per the divAgnya of bhagavad rAmAnuja. Secondly, there are very few here who are interested in such things, as such, making a thread of it would be useless.

    If you want, I will send it to you in private.

    The same goes for Tripura SamhArA, but I believe you already have a rough gist of it?

    That being said, doesn't Adi Shankara equate Shiva and Vishnu with his pancopasana doctrine? I have heard it said that pancopasana might have been a later development, but am not aware of any statements by Adi Shankara one way or another on this specific issue
    Adi Shankara, as well as all the advaita acharyas till Madhusudhana Saraswati, was not an advocator of panchOpAsana. He rejects Surya as the supreme brahman and Pasupati (Rudra) as well in various places (Brahma Sutra bhAshya, BrihadAranyaka upanishad bhAshya). Only Vishnu, Vasudeva and Narayana nAmAs find place in his bhAshyas. He interprets Keshava nAmA in his vishnu sahasranAma bhAshya as 'Ruler of Brahma and Rudra'. He rejects the concept that worship of anya devatas can lead to moksha in his gita bhAshya (vide: avidhi pUrvakam and related slokas). He rejects the pAshupata matham wholly in his brahma sutra bhAshya, but in the section on pAncharAtrA, he states that the worship of nArAyaNa as Parabrahman and his worship in temples, etc is fully vedic and accepted by him, although he does not accept pAncharAtrA in its totality. Hardly a position for one who favored panchOpAsana.

    His sishyas and later day advaitins like Sureshvara, Padmapada, Anandagiri, Amalananda, PrakashatmAn and Madhusudhana Saraswati have all accepted nArAyaNa only as parabrahman and rejected other devas. Take any famous polemical work of any of these gurus and you will first see a namaskAram to vishnu/vAsudevA/nArAyaNa only in the mangala sloka, as opposed to any other devata (credit goes to my friend for pointing this out more clearly).

    This whole panchOpAsaNa concept came about in the 15th century after the period of appayya dikshita, when some stotras were composed and attributed to Shankaracharya.

    But aside from the fact that Tulasi Das is not shruti, I have a friend initiated in the Ramanandi sampradaya who tells me that their view (including the view of Tulasi Das), is that Vishnu only is supreme, and that Shiva, though a highly-regarded deva, is not the same as Vishnu.
    The bolded line is all that matters. Tulasidas is neither shruti, nor does his work enjoy the same authority as Srimad vAlmiki rAmAyaNa, from which the former (Tulasidas) deviates drastically. That being said, nobody is insulting Tulasidas, whose work certainly is a masterpiece of poetry and devotion; it just isn't pramAna.
    Last edited by Sri Vaishnava; 16 May 2013 at 01:49 PM.
    [CENTER][COLOR="Black"][COLOR="Red"][COLOR="DarkRed"]No holiness rules over my freedom
    No commands from above I obey
    I seek the ruin, I shake the worlds
    Behold! I am blackest ov the black

    Ov khaos I am, the disobediant one
    Depraved son who hath dwelt in nothingness
    Upon the ninth I fell, from grace up above
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  4. Re: Some misconceptions - Answers from VA pov

    Quote Originally Posted by philosoraptor View Post
    I agree fully that the doctrine of "all gods = the same god" is not Vedic by any stretch of the imagination. That being said, doesn't Adi Shankara equate Shiva and Vishnu with his pancopasana doctrine? I have heard it said that pancopasana might have been a later development, but am not aware of any statements by Adi Shankara one way or another on this specific issue.
    Kindly visit http://narayanastra.blogspot.com for a clarification in this matter.

    Disclaimer: I posted the above link purely as an answer to philosoraptor's question about pancopasana. What I have written in that blog page may be caustic for some people here to read, as it was written in the heat of a debate. Dragging anyone to debate or to convincing them to change their firmly-held favorite belief is not my motive. However, the answer to philosoraptor's question is embedded there with textual references, and that is why I posted this link here. I specifically request those here who are ready to jump on me as "intolerant", "sectarian", etc. to note this point. They are welcome to not read. (Goes without saying that anyone with an open mind is welcome to read this and comment/respond/inquire, not here, but in the comments section of that page).
    Last edited by bhagavatafan; 21 May 2013 at 09:34 PM.

  5. Re: Some misconceptions - Answers from VA pov

    deleted (repeat post) apologies.
    Last edited by bhagavatafan; 22 May 2013 at 09:22 PM.

  6. #16

    Re: Some misconceptions - Answers from VA pov

    This is tremendously helpful, thank you bhagavatafan!

    I will go over this in more detail as time permits and perhaps request some clarifications then.
    Philosoraptor

    "Wise men speak because they have something to say. Fools speak because they have to say something." - Plato

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