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Re: Do we need to ask Him?

From: Krishna Kalale (
Date: Mon Dec 02 1996 - 18:32:44 PST

As a follow up of Mani's view,

I just want to add another UPANISHADIC need for acceptance from all our
acharyas that- prapatti has to have a predominant jnana element :

Upanisadic texts clearly state that "jnanat mokshaha" - Moksha can be
attained through jnana alone. Na anyaha pantha vidyate ayanaya - no other
method exists. "tam eva viditva atimrityumeti" - knowing him alone, one can
attain moksha.  

This requirement forces the need for prapatti to be of the nature of jnana.
The issue goes one step further, since the general acceptance is that
prapatti is "sakrit kartavya" act. ie. to be done once only.  This being the
case the karma aspect of prapatti becomes evident as a natural overflow of
the "surrender" jnana and more importantly, due to the need for such an act
to be completed by the help of an "ACHARYA".  

For this reason, Sri Vedanta Desika, does state in RTS, that prapatti is of
the nature of jnana, which should be done once via an acharya, employing
either uktinishta or acharyanishta, and is only a vyaja.

Otherwise, one can start assuming that, by reading the bhasya on "charama
sloka", one can obtain the knowledge of the sambandha jnana between God and
us and understand that there is no other means.  In this process, the need
for an Acharya, is mitigated, but for the fact that such an interpretation
came from such an Acharya.  I personally do not understand how one can club
the need for an acharya, with a "puritan" view that sambandha jnana of God
will suffice, for Moksha.  I am really trying to understand different view
points here, since I know very little regarding different views and
counterviews pertaining to prapatti.

This becomes a close parallel to the traditional, Visistadvaita-Advaita
controversy of - need for upasanatmaka knowledge of brahman, instead of just
"vakyartha jnana" ie. or the understanding of words "tatvamasi" alone. I
dont fully understand this controversy either, since advaitic view is so
diverse in this matter. Note, that upasanatmaka knowledge needs karma as an
anga while, vakyartha jnana does not need it.


At 12:12 PM 12/2/96 -0800, you wrote:
>Dileepan wrote:
>> No doubt His grace is the prime cause for salvation, but not begging for it
>> (mOksham) seems a little, I am sorry to say, haughty to me. 
>I tend to agree. And I think Mohan may have unknowingly
>implied something about the position of ManavaaLa MaamunigaL
>which is not the case.  Whether or not one considers prapatti
>an act in the Vedic sense, prapatti is considered by all
>acharyas as an act in the colloquial sense.
>I was recently listening to a discourse on the dvaya mantram
>by Kanchi Sri P.B. Annangarachariar Swami, who, as many of you
>know, was a dedicated follower of MaamunigaL (as well as a
>student and rasika of Swami Desikan's works).  He elaborates
>on the meaning of the word ``prapadye'' (I surrender) in the
>first sentence of the dvaya mantram.  This is quite clearly
>a ``taking refuge'' with the assumption that the Lord will
>save the individual.  Sri PBA Swami goes on to say that one
>should do this whenever possible with mind, word, and body --
>prostrate before the Lord, say the mantram, and believe in
>the mantram.  Each of these is a good thing and should be done.
>However, the principal element in the surrender is the
>mAnasika, i.e., mental element.  I don't think Swami Desikan
>would disagree with this at all, as mahA-viSvAsa (extreme faith)
>is the most important element of his exposition of self-surrender.
>The distinction lies in whether even this mental surrender
>is technically an act.  I do not want to engage in a debate
>over this issue, as it is pointless for us at our level to
>talk about something so purely technical.  Suffice it to say
>that saraNAgati is something that should be done as one's
>acharya guides us.  The Lord will take care of the rest.
Krishna Kalale
619-658-5612 (phone)
619-658-2115 (fax)