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RE: [Fwd: About Bhagavadgeetha and kainkaryam.]

From: Krishna Kalale (
Date: Wed Apr 21 1999 - 08:05:31 PDT

BN Suresh wrote :
sri Raamanuja tiruvadigale sarnam

  Respected members,
                                          I have two questions which i
would like to share with all of you,

   1. According to Ramanuja's Gita bhashya, an aspirant of moksha has to
realise his own self or have an experience
        of atmaavalokana through the process of either karma yoga or
jnana yoga before  he  starts bhakti yoga in the
        real sense .
                             Now my question is, " What is it that
factor that  shifts the attention of an aspirant
            having the experience of his own pure self towards God or
Isvara, so that he starts bhakti yoga
        leading to para bhakti and so on, since the jnana, aananda(joy)
inherent in the self might  itself
         satisfy the self which has realised itself ".

******* Krishna Kalale :

I am happy to note that your questions are well thought out.  Note that 
jiva is similar in svarupa to paramatma and also ensouled by paramatma. 
 Kaivalya or just self realization is also a stage in the process of 
paramatma realization.  self is unmistakably ensouled by paramatma - ie. 
supported, controlled, and does exist for the sole purpose of pleasing 
paramatma (adhara, niyamaka, seshi).  Initially just like how when a person 
from far is approaching a mountain, in the beginning he sees a small hump; 
then a large mountain, then details of trees, rocks etc on the mountain, 
when a person's maturity of perception increases, he sees atman as 
different from matter, realizes that the class of souls as distinct and 
have unique properties by self realization, then realizes similarity of 
different souls and similarity of God and soul.

 why did God come here?... Note that even karmayoga or jnana yoga is 
impossible without the help of GOD.  For that matter even sense control is 
impossible without trust in GOD and in a way surrender to GOD!  - note the 
verse in II chapter - "tani sarvani samyamya yukta asita matparah vase hi 
yasyendriyani tasya prajna pratistita" - which means - " to get out of 
cyclic dependency -  " success in sense control is dependent on sight of 
self and sight of self occurs only when senses are controlled" -  One has 
to meditate on Lord Krishna.  Yamunacharya in gitartha samgraha says tribir 
anyonya sangamaha -  karma yoga, jnana yoga and bhaktiyoga, each of them 
have an element of the other two!

That means that an aspirant does karmayoga and jnana yoga only after 
learning the techniques by teachers and scripture - sruti vipratipanna te 
yada stasyati nischala - chapter II.  even before and while doing karmayoga 
or jnanayoga, one is aware of GOD through srutis and God.

AFter attaining experience of similarity of souls and GOD, the aspirant 
slowly finds out the unmistakable relation of GOD ensouling jiva jiva being 
dependent on GOD.  Note that if jiva just realizes the similarity of souls 
(which include GOD, as another soul), then it will be just realization of a 
limited aspect of truth.  He then obviously think that why did he get into 
matter if he were similar to GOD? atmapyanishah sukha duhka hetoh - this is 
verse of from svetasvetara - even atma or self is not the boss, since self 
got bound in matter.  If it were the ruler, it would not have let itself be 
bound in matter. Hence self realization cannot give complete satisfaction.

note in 3rd chapter, even while doing karmayoga, one does realize that this 
karmayoga is to please GOD.  to achieve success in karmayoga, one has to 
rely on GOD's help.  THis makes the aspirant realize his dependency on GOD. 
 Then he goes further and gets interested in meditating on GOD, seeing the 
limitations of self.  One could definitely get overwhelmed by the pristine 
self.  But However,  Vedanta Desika contends that GOD who is all merciful 
usually push such "self realised souls" to further levels by his mercy 
taking a ruse of some devotion in that individual.  Eventually he will 
proceed to GOD realization.  Note the verse from 5th chapter in the end, 
 "suhridam sarva bhutanam jnantva mam santim ricchati" - states "an 
aspirant attains peace after knowing the friend of all - Lord Krishna". 
This indicates that he is not completely peaceful in just self realization 
and he attains peace only after knowing GOD.  This inkling of interest in 
GOD matures into - yoginam api sarvesam madgatena antaratmana sraddhavan 
bhajate mam sa me yukta tamo matah - chapter 6 last verse.  ie. the yogi 
who meditates on vasudeva is of the highest order compared to "self 
realization" type of yogis.  Then the meditation of vasudeva opens up new 
avenues to the aspirant and sees GOD as the immanent and transcendent all 
powerful entity as explained in further chapters 7,8,.9 etc

   2.   At many places in books related to Visistaadvaitha, i have come
across sentences like " The real nature
         of the jivatman is to do kainkaryam to Narayana" and "The jiva
exists solely for the pleasure of the Lord".
            Now what exactly do the two statements mean, taking the
ontological definitions of jiva and isvara in
         Visistaadvaita vedanta into consideration.

Krishna Kalale ***********************

It means that " jiva " or jada are not independent entities.  THeir very 
existence is dependent on GOD;  hence jiva and jada though eternal, their 
nature, functions, properties etc are all willed by GOD for the purpose of 
satisfying HIS plans or pleasures.  Only limitations of knowledge is making 
this jiva go after matter or self .  If knowledge of jiva becomes pure and 
infinite due to the mercy of lord,  then it realizes that jiva does not 
have anything else other than  pleasing GOD serving HIM whole heartedly 
with absolutely no selfish or any other agenda.

It is interesting that these questions strangely have been asked while 
adiyen is dealing with these very issues in the bi-weekly bhagavadgita 
tele-conference classes.


krishna Kalale