Swamini Svatmavidyananda Session #3 – Sri Vidyaranya Swami’s Panchadasi

Sri Vidyaranya Swami’s पञ्चदशी

Session #3 by Sri Swamini Svatmavidyananda on Feb 22nd 2016 at 5.30 AM IST

Here is the video of the recording of the session — http://livestream.com/Swaminiji/events/4830020

ॐ सहना ववतु सह नौ भुनक्तु सहवीर्यं करवावहै । तेजस्वीनावधीतामस्तु माविद्विषावहै ॥ ॐ शांतिः । शांतिः। शांतिः |

नमः श्रीशङ्करानन्दगुरुपादाम्बुजन्मने । सविलासमहामोहग्राहग्रासैककर्मणे ॥ १॥
namaḥ śrīśaṅkarānandagurupādāmbujanmane savilāsamahāmohagrāhagrāsaikakarmaṇe

अविचारकृतो बन्धो विचारेण निवर्तते ।
तस्माज्जीवपरात्मानौ सर्वदैव विचारयेत् ॥ ५॥

Negation indicates – Insufficient enquiry, Doing things other than enquiry, Absence of enquiry, wrong enquiry. Bandah – centered on the “I”.   [Refer earlier class notes for the details]

Agah – na gachchati – corels. Turagaas – turage gachchati. Khagaas – khe gachchati. These creatures do not have the problems centered on the self. They are happy being what they are. Only humans have this problem. Therefore please do enquiry. Tasmaat vichaarayet.

Ramana did “Who am I?” enquiry. His path is being wrongly interpreted though it does not negate the need for the guru or the study of the Vedanta.

The Adhikaari to do enquiry is the person who is a jignaasuhu – seeker of knowledge. According to the established rules the guru has to be approached nicely (aasaadhya).

Some consider that there are so many options including Vedanta. The brahma sutra says that the path is like the trail left behind by the bird in its flight – there is no path. It is the dismissal of the ignorance – the glory that you are – is revealed. Vedanta is the truth of yourself, it is not a philosophy.

Everyone wants to be loved. These longings are enacted in the spiritual realm also. They look for solutions based on those longings. Such people want the guru should chose them, look at them, make them feel special. The longings now are towards some spiritual experience.

There is no such thing in Vichaara. Vichaara means zero subjectivity. We should suspend the longings and do enquiry. In the 4th chapter of the mandukopanishad – in the kaarikas, Shankara’s guru Gaudapaadaacharya (author of Māṇḍukya Kārikā) dismisses these arguments. Alaata-shanti prakaranam – there is a glowing spot in the incense stick which can create various forms which vanish immediately.

Why do you want options? Vedanta is not one among many options.  The five primary means of knowledge are

  1. 5 senses – aksham aksham prati = प्रत्यक्ष – perception;
  2. Inference – anumaana;
  3. arthapaatti – one or more step inference – postulations; puppy has taken the shoes.
    De Kart said “I think; therefore I am”. Later he reversed it and said “I am; therefore I think”.
  4. Upama – comparison; like the cow
  5. Anupalabdhi – the cognition of absence; the absence of a flower in our hand;

Viveka choodamani –
अतो विचारः कर्तव्यः जिज्ञासोरात्मवस्तुनः ।
समासाद्य दयासिन्धुं गुरुं ब्रह्मविदुत्तमम् ॥१५॥

अतः आत्मवस्तुनः सिज्ञासोः दयासिन्धुं ब्रह्मवित् उत्तमं गुरुं समासाद्य (आत्मवस्तुनः) विचारः कर्तव्यः ।

Therefore enquiry should be done by the one who is desirous of knowing the self having approached the best teacher who is the knower of brahman and ocean of compassion.



Vedanta is beyond these 5 means of knowledge. Vedanta dismantles or  knocks off or dismisses the knower. Gnaana Triputi – knower, known, an object of knowledge – gnaataa, gnaanam, gneyam. When the cognition of the flower takes place, Knower is different from the known.

[The six schools of Hindu philosophy are Nyaya, Vaisheshika, Samkhya, Yoga, Mīmāṃsā and Vedanta.]

Naiyaayika-s try to derive the conclusions. There has to be systematic dismantling of what we have thought of ourselves. In Vedanta, the knower is plucked out. The knower wants to hold on as much as possible.

Shabda pramaana is the sixth means of knowledge. It is the words of Vedanta, handled properly by a guru, who has been trained by his guru. The Shabda pramaana operates upon me, while the other 5 pramaanas are operated by us.

Vedanta knocks you out to remove the wrong notions like the anesthesia knocks out the patient during the operation done for removing a tumor. The shabda pramaana needs a speaker – that is in the form of a live teaching – from a guru.

When we encounter the words of the shashtra that we are the whole. We are unable to handle it due to our false notions, resistances, wrong conclusions, etc. These are handled by the teacher who has submitted to the same operation by his teacher and this paramparaa goes up until Sadashiva himself. I salute the entire lineage.

sadASiva samArambhAm. SankarAcArya madhyamAm.
asmadAcArya paryantAm.vande guru paramparAm. ||

The term Guru is used in all fields of knowledge very loosely like cooking, music, dance, etc. Guru is the one who teaches the maha vakhya. The authority issues make one become afraid of having a guru. The insecurity is the projection of the unconscious from the past onto the present situation.

We have a child and an adult in us. The child wants to be parented. The guru teaches the adult within the disciple as to how to handle the child within oneself. The unconscious and the conscious minds within me are split. The inner splits are healed by the guru and the result is oneness. Guru is an invariable part of the knowledge of Vedanta. Shraddhaavaan labhate gnaanam says Gita – that the sincere student will gain the knowledge.

Adhyaasa – is the projection of the earlier experiences – these are transferences. Let them happen. Don’t buy into that. Be in a state of neutral witnessing. Watch it and don’t get affected by it. There are two general transferences apart from those specific to each person. The first one is Shobhanaa adhyaasa – positive transference – seeing everything about the guru as a wonderful person, as a savior.  The second one is Ashobhanaa adhyaasa – negative transference. When the guru fails to give special attention to the disciple, the disciple loses the reverence. Sometimes it oscillates between positive and negative transference.

The Vedantic knowledge becomes Shabda pramaana only when it is spoken by the teacher and not when it is read by us on our own. This process of knowing is different from the other means of knowledge. While watching a flower, the cognition goes out with the help of the eyes, checks out the flower and brings the knowledge back to the mind. This is called Vrutti vyaapti. This thought about this flower is the information that the mind needs. Then there is re-cognition. This is called phala vyaapti. So in this case, there is flower-thought, flower-cognition and flower-recognition.

In case of understanding oneself, the vrutti is akhandaakaara vrutti – the vrutti of oneness. The teaching of oneness also comes in the form of a thought. It goes in and self-destructs as Vrutti or thought by itself is kshanikaa or momentary. It enables us to have the darshan of Bhagavan  as the truth of oneself. There is no phala vyaapti as I already exist and it is already known. The wrong notations are getting dismissed. It breaks down the concrete walls of false notions. “I” naturally shines.

Viveka choodamani says, http://www.vedantavichara.com/vivekachudamani-the-student.html

अतः आत्मवस्तुनः जिज्ञासोः दयासिन्धुं ब्रह्मवित् उत्तमं गुरुं समासाद्य (आत्मवस्तुनः) विचारः कर्तव्यः ।

Therefore enquiry should be done by the one who is desirous of knowing the self having approached the best teacher ….

How to approach is also mentioned there – तमाराध्य गुरुं भक्त्या प्रह्वप्रश्रयसेवनैः । भक्त्या with devotion प्रह्व-प्रश्रय-सेवनैः (प्रह्व bent with folded hands, प्रश्रय humility, सेवन being sensitive to his needs and ready to fulfill them)

Having approached the guru with reverence. tad viddhi pranipaatena pariprashnena sevayaa as the Gita says in verse 36 in chapter 4. By bending humbly and serving the Guru, one should learn. Only in Vedanta, the knower is knocked off. We are giving permission to the guru to knock us off.

Pariprashna – questioning at the proper time in the proper way – learn from the way Arjuna puts forth the question. “As though confused” without saying that “you are confusing me”. Vyaamishreneva vaakyena bhuddhim mohayasi iva me – as though you are confusing – says Arjuna in Chapter 3.

Seva is not to be confused with slavery. I look for opportunities to serve, as I want to be around to learn from you. The word Shishrusha – is Shrotum ichchaa. It is used to mean taking care in other languages. It actually means the desire to hear and learn. I make myself useful while I am hanging around.

Upadekshanti te gnaanam tattva darshinah – Definitely the guru will teach you. This guru who has studied properly from their gurus will teach you. The guru was the student to be receptive. There is no other expectation from the guru except that the student should gain the knowledge.



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