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Thread: Brahman to ISKCON?

  1. #21
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    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    hari o
    ~~~~~~

    namast

    Quote Originally Posted by Tirisilex View Post
    I still do not understand what Brahma is. Is Brahma Spiritual reality and Maya Material reality? I'm so lost on this..
    It seems to me aligning māyā to any reality will be a challanging conversation. Yet I see why you would say it the way you have presented it.
    Māyā may be better understood as an ~experience~. Since it is one's own experience some call it reality, yet this is not so.

    Also note the spelling: brahma is used for the impersonal Spirit/ Being, pure existence itself, and the brahmā for the personal god. Yet this is nominclature, no? Brahma = Brahman = Reality. There is no-thing that is not this Brahman; yet to talk about it we seperate difference ideas out for one's contemplation and understanding.

    These ideas are a start and not the final say-so.

    praām
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  2. #22

    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    I do not understand how Brahman relates to Krishna..

  3. #23

    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tirisilex View Post
    I do not understand how Brahman relates to Krishna..
    Please read the first response to OP - carefully.

    1. "Bhagavān, or the Personality of Godhead, is the last word of the Absolute Truth. Paramātmā is the partial representation of the Personality of Godhead, and impersonal Brahman is the glowing effulgence of the Personality of Godhead, as the sun rays are to the sun-god. "

    - Shrila PrabhupAd's purport to SB 1.2.11 Ref: http://vedabase.net/


    2. bhahmANo hi pratishthA aham amrutasyAvyayasya cha
    shAshvatasya cha dharmasya sukhasyaikAntikasya cha
    - BG 14.27

    Verily I am the original foundation (prathishthhA) of [impersonal] BrahmaN and of eternal righteousness; of imperishable immortality and absolute transcendental bliss.

    And prathishthhA of impersonal Truth is BhagvAn - Shri KrushNa / VishNu, NArAyaN. He is the thhekedAr, care-taker of the Truth.


    ---

    Impersonal formless Brahman - i.e. entire existence and the white screen on which that existence lies, is the impersonal aspect and Shri KrushNa is the root, source, FOUNDATION, resting place, basis of that Brahman.

    analogy:
    KrushNa = Sun Himself
    Brahman = effulgence of the Sun.
    Last edited by smaranam; 30 May 2011 at 05:46 PM. Reason: Isha Upanishad verse 16 with purport
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

  4. #24

    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    Shrī Īśopaniṣad 16

    pūṣann ekarṣe yama sūrya prājāpatya
    vyūha raśmīn samūha
    tejo yat te rūpaḿ kalyāṇa-tamaḿ
    tat te paśyāmi yo 'sāv asau puruṣaḥ so 'ham asmi


    O my Lord, O primeval philosopher, maintainer of the universe, O regulating principle, destination of the pure devotees, well-wisher of the progenitors of mankind, please remove the effulgence of Your transcendental rays so that I can see Your form of bliss. You are the eternal Purusha (as GodHead) , like unto the sun, as am I (purusha as living entity).

    PURPORT: The sun and its rays are one and the same qualitatively. Similarly, the Lord and the living entities are one and the same in quality. The sun is one, but the molecules of the sun's rays are innumerable. The sun's rays constitute part of the sun, and the sun and its rays conjointly constitute the complete sun. Within the sun itself resides the sun-god, and similarly within the supreme spiritual planet, Goloka Vṛndāvana, from which the brahmajyoti effulgence is emanating, the Lord enjoys His eternal pastimes...
    The brahmajyoti is described in the Brahma-saḿhitā as the rays emanating from that supreme spiritual planet, Goloka Vṛndāvana, just as the sun's rays emanate from the sun globe. Until one surpasses the glare of the brahmajyoti, one cannot receive information of the land of the Lord....
    Śrī Īśopaniṣad petitions the Lord to remove the effulgent rays of the brahmajyoti so that the pure devotee can see His all-blissful transcendental form
    By realizing the impersonal brahmajyoti, one experiences the auspicious aspect of the Supreme, and by realizing the Paramātmā, or all-pervading feature of the Supreme, one experiences an even more auspicious enlightenment. But by meeting the Personality of Godhead Himself face to face, the devotee experiences the most auspicious feature of the Supreme. Since He is addressed as the primeval philosopher and maintainer and well-wisher of the universe, the Supreme Truth cannot be impersonal. This is the verdict of Śrī Īśopaniṣad. The word pūṣan ("maintainer") is especially significant, for although the Lord maintains all beings, He specifically maintains His devotees. After surpassing the impersonal brahmajyoti and seeing the personal aspect of the Lord and His most auspicious eternal form, the devotee realizes the Absolute Truth in full....

    Thus there is a gulf of difference between the living entity (ātmā) and the controlling Lord (Paramātmā), the soul and the Supersoul. Paramātmā is the controller, and the ātmā is the controlled; therefore they are in different categories. Because the Paramātmā fully cooperates with the ātmā, He is known as the constant companion of the living being.

    The all-pervading feature of the Lord — which exists in all circumstances of waking and sleeping as well as in potential states and from which the jīva-śakti (living force) is generated as both conditioned and liberated souls — is known as Brahman. Since the Lord is the origin of both Paramātmā and Brahman, He is the origin of all living entities and all else that exists. One who knows this engages himself at once in the devotional service of the Lord.


    praNAm
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

  5. #25

    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tirisilex View Post
    I do not understand how Brahman relates to Krishna..
    yes, you seem to be asking the RELATIONSHIP between them rather than the singular or absolute status (or otherwise) type statements. you are asking this in the context of ISKCON theology which is a progressive (due to Shreela Bhaktivinoda Tha[a]kur) expressdion of Chaitanyaite devotionalism.

    Two books by AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupa[a]da (the founding acharaya of ISKCON) are critical to obtain an insight into the ISKCON position on this:
    1) The Golden Avatar, Teachings of Lord Chaitanya
    2) The Nectar of Devotion, the Complete Science of Bhakti Yoga.

    In these books you will find various statements on the RELATIONSHIP between Brahman and Krishna, Brahman realisation and Bhagavan realisation and so on. For example some of the positions MAY be summarised as:

    a. Krishna (Bhagavan), Paramatman and Brahman are different expressions/perspectives of the Divine Being of which Krishna is the superior focus for the devotee.
    b. One needs to be Brahman realised to a be on the pure platform of devotional service but the bona fide guided beginner practice of devotional service can, itself, spontaneously or naturally lead to the pure platform (where the Brahman realisation is incidental, rather than critical)
    c. Brahman and Brahmajyoti (the effulgence of Brahman) are equated as the same thing despite the fact that the books are replete with the analogy of the sun and the sunlight being both different and the same.
    d. The light emanating from Krishna is equated with the Brahmajyoti but to an extent that Brahmajyoti monopolises the conception of Brahman (interestly while the sunlight does not monopolise the conception of the sun).
    e. "Attachment" to Brahman can impede devotional service.

    I have yet to come across any ISKCON devotees who have managed to overcome some of the direct and implied contradictions in these (and other) positions in their understanding of Gaudiya theology/philosophy that comprehends ontology of Brahman and Krishna and their relationship.

    (Personally speaking, I do not feel there is a contradiction with the postions in a. or b.)

  6. #26

    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    Quote Originally Posted by sarangi dasi View Post
    c. Brahman and Brahmajyoti (the effulgence of Brahman) are equated as the same thing despite the fact that the books are replete with the analogy of the sun and the sunlight being both different and the same.
    Hare KrushNa , Sarangiji,

    The sun and sunlight are simultaneously same and different, because sun is ParaBrahman', the pratishThA, basis of sunlight i.e. brahman (BrahmANohi pratishThA aham - BG 14). On the other hand, what is conventionally called Brahman IS the BrahmaJyoti, the energy, effulgence, radiance of KrushNa.


    d. The light emanating from Krishna is equated with the Brahmajyoti but to an extent that Brahmajyoti monopolises the conception of Brahman (interestly while the sunlight does not monopolise the conception of the sun).
    Again, the sunlight is not supposed to monopolise the conception of sun because the sun is ParaBrahman Parameshwar BhagvAn, not just Brahman.

    e. "Attachment" to Brahman can impede devotional service.
    As long as Brahman is understood as the potent aspect, subtle energy of the KrushNa, BhagvAn, ParaBrahman, Parameshwar, then this statement is very easy to understand.
    Attachment to Brahman means the conventional attachment to nirguN nirAkAr avyakta, and hence to kaivalya-moksha. It is attachment to this state of kaivalya-moksha that is an impedement to devotional service. Studying this aspect of the Divine automatically brings this moksha attachment, at least in ordinary jivas.

    Clearly, in this state of kaivalya, there is no contemplation on devotional service ... to .... whom ? since there is no one around, not even the jiva herself. This cannot be a progressive post-Chaitanya idea, as Lord Chaitanya Himself forbade this attachment for devotees : " _________ _________ sunile sarvanash"


    If the intention is to understand what appears as contradictions, it can be done, by the Lord's Merciful Grace, although there will always be the achintya (inconceivable). I am not qualified to untie the knots, but only stay at the Lotus Feet of Giridhar-MohanA, His devotees and Acharyas and only hope that this added input will help some.


    praNAm
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

  7. #27

    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    The all-pervading feature of the Lord — which exists in all circumstances of waking and sleeping as well as in potential states and from which the jīva-śakti (living force) is generated as both conditioned and liberated souls — is known as Brahman.
    - Bhaktivedanta Swami PrabhupAd, Purport to Ishopanishad 16
    Hare KrushNa
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

  8. #28

    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    Quote Originally Posted by anirvan View Post
    They want to say that Personal form is first and brahman(sunrays) part is second.so 1st is origin of second. which is completely wrong and against the very ethos of advita.

    Its like butter in milk. Brahman is the milk. Butter is Bhagaban(whichever name you may call him like krishna/Ram/Siva).

    So in Brahmananda anubhuti,one experience both componenets......the all pervading akhana-sachidananda tattva plus Bhagaban tattva ,but not like personal bhagaban of bhaktas. so they taste butter,but mixed with milk.

    But a bhakta who enter LEELA ,serve and experience Personal Bhagaban,its more pure,more loving and more rasa-yukta.so its like tasting butter directly.
    but Bhakta of such qualities definitely also miss the other parts of milk.so they miss swaroop-ananda and they can"t be as liberal and broad as advitin.

    this is the reason,pure bhakti-margi appears fundamentalist,but it shows their un-diluted love for divine only.so we can view this as positive things.

    This is the difference between Nitya and leela.
    Namaskar Anirvan !

    Excellent post.
    The Brahm / God of the Vedas is nirgun, nirakar. The milk.
    So we accept the formless and the forms without doing the God positioning.
    Form is easier to meditate upon for humans that have easier relation to forms.
    Kind regards,

    Yogkriya

  9. #29

    Re: Brahman to ISKCON?

    Namaste,

    We don't have to debate over the medium of language and words, but we have to live with two major conclusions of the Vedas. This post is not some personal ego-endeavour, but only for the record, and FYI. Then i'll be gone.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yogkriya View Post
    The Brahm / God of the Vedas is nirgun, nirakar. The milk
    This is only one school of thought so let me put here the other view also:

    The word nirguN has to have a clear definition - beyond and untouched by the three material guNas, but possessing infinite spiritual transcendental qualities. NirAkAr is only a word. His rUpa is achintya, incomprehensible AkAr, incomprehensible to the embodied because it is spiritual, not material.

    BG 11.54 bhaktyā tv ananyayā śakya
    aham evaḿ-vidho 'rjuna
    jñātuḿ draṣṭuḿ ca tattvena
    praveṣṭuḿ ca parantapa


    Śrīmad Bhāgavatam 1.2.11 Learned transcendentalists who know the Absolute Truth call this nondual substance Brahman, Paramātmā or Bhagavān.

    The Upanishad and Brahma-sUtra bhAsya from other schools (Shri-Ramanuj, Brahma-Madhav, Rudra-Vishnuswami , Kumar-Nimbarka) - show that God of the Vedas is a Person with achintya rUpa, not ultimately nirakar, the milk.

    Another source:
    Atma and Bramha in Upanishads - Encyclopedia of Authentic Hinduism
    FORMS OF GOD AND THEIR DIVINE ABODES

    --------

    Shrimad Bhagvatam, the crown-jewel of all purANs, explains the transcendental qualities, lilas, and names of Parameshwar. It was written by the same VedVyas - not with an intention to add a fairy-tale extension to Upanishads and Bramha-sUtras, but to bring out the true purpose and essence of the Vedas.


    God has a form, but it is not a form like ours. His form is sac-cid-ananda, but ours is just the opposite. God's form is sat, eternally existing, while man's form is asat, temporary. God's form is cit, full of knowledge, but ours is acit, full of ignorance. And His form is full of ananda, bliss, but ours is full of nirananda, misery. It is only because we cannot conceive of a form so different from ours that sometimes it is said God is nirakara, without form.

    God's form is transcendental. That means His body is not material but spiritual. His form is of a different nature than that to which we are accustomed. In the Vedas it is said that God sees but that He has no eyes or eyes everywhere. This means that God's eyes are unlike ours--they are spiritual, not material. We can see only so far, whereas God can see everything because He has eyes everywhere. His eyes, His form, His hands and legs are of a different nature than ours.”
    om namo bhagavate vAsudevAya
    praNAm
    Last edited by smaranam; 04 July 2011 at 03:55 PM. Reason: FORMS OF GOD AND THEIR ABODES
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

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