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RE: Sri Vaishnava tradition

From: Krishna Kalale (kkalale1_at_san.rr.com)
Date: Wed Aug 04 1999 - 19:53:50 PDT

-----Original Message-----
From:	a c [SMTP:ac@ampsc.com]
Sent:	Wednesday, August 04, 1999 6:10 PM
To:	bhakti@lists.best.com
Subject:	Re: Sri Vaishnava tradition

Dear Sir,

>First of all, please tell us your name so we can address you properly.
>

Please call me Al if you feel uncomfortable with "Dear Sir" or
"Mr. C." as the very proper British often address each other ...

>The issue is who is described as the Ultimate Reality in the Vedas, and
>whether anything else can compare to this Highest Power.  Repeatedly,
>the shastras and our acharyas tell us that Sriman Narayana (Vishnu) is
>the Ultimate Reality, and that only Narayana, being the source of all 
bliss,
>can confer the bliss of  moksha to the aspirant.
>

I am currently reading books on basic Hinduism.  Is there anything like
"Dancing With Siva"  for westerners from a Vaishnavite perspective?

[Krishna Kalale]  there are several such books "hinduism primer" by VN 
gopala desikan which is available here in USA.  Please contact 
dileepan@utc.edu (parthasarathy dileepan) for this.


I'm dismayed you think Siva is just a second rate "tosser" ,  incapable of
conferring moksha -- what good is Siva to me if he can't do that?  I'm
dismayed the Hindu religion might not agree with itself on fundamental
issues like whether God (by any other name) is capable of granting moksha.
[Krishna Kalale]

Your confusion regarding hinduism is natural. Hinduism does not 
discriminate against foreigners.  It confuses Hindus themselves!  It is not 
a simple religion, it is a way of life.  In fact so is Buddhism with so 
many divisions within it.

Didn't the Saivites, Sankara, etc. all read the same Vedas too?   How, I
wonder, did all those brilliant pious souls miss something as important as
this?   If the Vedic tradition is so ambiguous it leads to such entirely
different conclusions (ie. Siva is or isn't equal to Visnu) then what kind
of infallible guide can it be to me?
[Krishna Kalale]
Your views on Samkara is, I am afraid mistaken.  Samkara was a Vaishnava. 
Please read his Prasthana traya bhasya - in brihadaranyaka upanisad as well 
as gita bhasya he has upheld that Antaryami ie. in dwelling lord is 
Narayana unmistakably.  Please note that books like "dancing with Siva" 
etc.  and that Hawwaian vedanta center - even though it publishes "hinduism 
today" - a news paper is only one view of Hinduism which is a collection of 
views.  ( Please see the fine print therei in *hinduism today paper*  which 
reads " as practiced by a saiva tradition belonging to tirujnana sambandar 
of south india".  This is only one of the 4 dozen views of Hinduism and the 
name of this news paper is a MISNOMER or at best improper.

Please don't think I'm complaining about you or your tradition because I'm
not.  I'm complaining about my difficulty trying to assess what is and
isn't essential and I know that's my problem not anyone else.  Just try to
imagine how this all might seem to someone encountering it for the first
time and don't loose patience -- I'm trying my best.
[Krishna Kalale]

Patience my friend,  you need to talk to someone instead of emailing on 
this net for a hundred times just to get more confused.  email is not a 
good communication method, but it is cheap.  Remember the old way, one 
should access a guru and sit down and enquire.  upadeksyanti te jnanam 
jnaninah tatva darsinaha.
P.S.
I have only limited internet access so it's hard for me to read your
archives but i have enquired about Ramanuja's commentary on the Gita from a
cheaper source than Amazon.com
[Krishna Kalale]

You can get "Ramanuja on Gita" by SS raghavachar from vivekananda vedanta 
center in Hyde park chicago for just 3-4 dollars.
I guess you need to call 1-312-555-1212 for the actual telephone number. 
 Incidentally, there is also a book sri ramanuja on gita bhasya - by 
adidevananda which is good too.  Please read

"varadaraja panchasat" by Philloziat (a westerner) for proofs of supremacy 
of vishnu over siva.  In fact most of these arguments are on an archive 
written by some folks of this bhakti list.  Please contact mani@be.com for 
archives. If you want to contact me for any further info you can email me 
at kkalale1@san.rr.com.  If you want me to call you, I may call you if you 
send your telephone, at my convenience, provided you are in US.

adiyen Krishna Kalale