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2nd follow-up on "PPS"

From: M K Sudarshan (sudarsan_at_batelco.com.bh)
Date: Thu Feb 13 1997 - 00:57:43 PST

Dear friends,

One other question on the 'PPS' posts variously raised by some
'bhAgavatOttamA-s' was as follows:
   
  **In spite of reaching the 'prasadana-parva' and embracing the 'padukA-s'
in a spirit of true "prappati", Bharatha nevertheless had to return to the
Ayodhya-  palace and to all the things of the world which hitherto elicited
nothing but his utter revulsion and contempt ("virakthi"). 

  **So how does Bharatha reconcile in his mind to the fact that even after
'prappati', he still has to willy-nilly "transact daily business" with a
world he basically loathes ? 

  **How does the act of "prappati" magically and instantly change the
fundamental nature of all those feelings of deep revulsion an aspirant
previously harboured for the material world ? 

  **Is it really possible to transform the nature of such intense feelings
of "virakthi" overnight into one of "philosophical resignation" as Bharatha
seemed to have done on his return to Ayodhya from Chitrakoota ? 

Another related question, dear 'bhAgavatOttamA-s', was as follows:

  **It was observed (in one of my posts) : "Bharatha amply demonstrated his
revulsion for the power and pelf that goes with the office of the King of
Ayodhya; he spurned the job with all its attendent perquisites of opulence
and ostentation; he was willing to denounce his mother, father and even his
guru; he did not have a moment's thought for his own spouse; the majesty of
the Court of the Ishvaku Empire meant nothing to him; palace treasury, royal
guards, hunting trips, banquets and balls, carriages, splendid horses, court
jesters and poets, retinues of loyal courtiers ...(meant nothing to him).."

    Now after returning to Ayodhya and performing the
"paduka-pattAbhishEkam", Bharatha is perforce enjoined by the position he
holds as Proxy Head-of-State to enjoy the perquisites and power accompanying
the same office. Palace-protocol too would have forced him on certain
ceremonious occasions to indulge in the very same pomp and luxuries of
Royalty he rejected before his visit to Lord Rama at Chitrakoota !!

    Now how does one reconcile all this ?

Indeed, shouldn't we ask, how one can explain the anamalous situation after
"prappati" when, after rejecting all sources of the "material enjoyment" of
the world, the "prappana" is once more forced into accepting the same set of
"material" circumstances that prevailed in his life prior to performing
"prappatti"? 

                   *****************************************

The above are all very, very pertinent and searching questions that arise
from a serious study of Swami Desikan's "paramapada-sOpAnam", dear
'bhAgavatOttamA-s'. It is good we discuss these things threadbare if we are
to gather some insight into their concept.

The answers to the above questions are not directly, I believe, given by
Swami Desikan himself in the "PPS". If they are, then, they are couched in
the language of high philosophy which perhaps will require a proper
"AchArya" (personal mentor) to explain adequately to us.

But even without such "AchAryA-upadEsam", we can always do the next best thing. 

We can glean some tentative answers by referring to other great SriVaishnava
'AchAryA-s' of the past who have addressed those very questions raised above.

The great Sri.Parashara Bhattar has given us some semblance of answers to
the sort of questions raised above.

Bhattar, as we all know, was an 'AchArya' who had exceptional ability to
offer answers to knotty questions through very simple day-to-day analogies
that anybody could understand.

I shall share some of Sri.Parashara Bhattar's explanations on "virakthi" and
the "post-prappathi" period in the next post.

sudarshan