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Re: dhyana

From: V. Chandrasekaran (
Date: Mon Aug 31 1998 - 01:35:39 PDT

Dear Members,
   It is an interesting question why no quotes and thoughts 
were brought forward from any Vaishnava works under the subject 
of "dhyAna". I am sure learned vaishnavas of this list will
have suitable response for this. I have read recently an article
about a book on "yOga as propounded by nAdhamuni". I think the 
famous yOgi of today viz., Sri T.K.V.Desikachar is the author of 
that book. I am sure Vaishnavas must be knowing better regarding 
nAdhamuni being a great yOgi; I read in that article that he had 
a vision of nammAzhwAr through his yOgic powers and devotion.
Has nAdhamuni delivered any ideas on this subject in his works?

  I would like to bring forward certain points with regard to
the belief that the three great advaita munis mentioned in the
original post viz., Sri Adhi Sankarar, Sri Ramakrishnar and
Sri Ramanar preached ashtanga yoga for self-realisation. Though
I am very little qualified to comment on this subject I will
bring out some facts which I have come across during my scarce
readings. Sorry if bhagavathas feel I am bringing in too many
things `anniyam' to vaishNavam.

  All these three sages approved that bhakti is the superior
margam to self-realisation. Sri Adhi Sankhara's Bhaja Govindam
and numerous slokams on various deities are examples of his 
approving one-pointed, unqualified devotion as the margam for 
liberation. Sri Ramanar says "bhakti gn~yana mAthA"; nothing 
more need be said. Sri Ramanar started his spiritual pursuit 
at his young age as a staunch Siva bhakta upon dawn of knowledge 
while reading sEkkizhAr's "periya purANam", the nUl that talks 
of the life of 63 nAyanmArgaL. Sri Ramanar explains ideal bhakti
in his Upadesa Saram. And as everyone knows Sri Ramakrishna 
was a great devotee of parAsakthi mAthA; he even went to the extent 
of beheading himself for not getting the dharsan of the Adhi sakthi.

  But as Sri Ramanar would say, it's only for the unrealised souls
that there is differentiation between various margams. For jIvan
mukthas it doesn't really matter because there is nothing to 
differentiate. They don't think about which margam they are in
since they are already at the destination.

  But nothing like melting down in pure devotion for the Lord.
The anubhavam that Thondaradi Podi Azhwar would have had when he 
sung that pasuram on Lord Ranganatha (posted by Sri Vijay Triplicane).
"AiyO! en seigEn ulagatthIrE!" is simply something that will
make one thaw down losing all senses. There are many such anubhavams
nAyanmArs went through in devotion to Lord Siva.

It's the parama Anandam and piravi payan. Swamy Thyagaraja would
  "tapamu yOga phalamu nIvE, rAmA..." - meaning the phalam of
my tapas in my earlier janmam is worshipping and enjoying you,
Hey Rama!. Blessed are they who have unshakeable devotion to 
the Lord.