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Re: Discussion of grace

From: Krishna Kalale (
Date: Sun May 18 1997 - 20:56:31 PDT

At 12:04 PM 5/16/97 -0700, Mani Varadarajan wrote:
>Let me hasten to state at the outset that I did not
>mean to imply that S.M. Srinivasa Chari thinks that
>the effort involved behind SaraNaagati "wins" moksha.
>However, from reading his words, it is easy to be 
>left with that impression, as also with the impression
>that the "thengalai" interpretation leaves God as
>partial and arbitrary in His graciousness.
>I am not comfortable with this characterization of 
>either understanding of prapatti; many modern writers 
>are not careful enough with their words, leaving readers 
>with the wrong impression of the original philosophers' ideas.

I would definitely not put Sri SMS CHari into this category of writers.  I
feel that he puts in hundreds of hours to correct and re-evaluate what he
has written. I know it first hand, since I really spent so much time to
enter in "the Philosophy of Brahmasutras - a comparitive evaluation
according to Samkara, Ramanuja and Madhva".  

Further, I dont think many people realize how hard it is to come up with a
book and write exactly what one thinks on the subject.

>For example, I have an English translation of Srimad Rahasya 
>Traya Saaram wherein the translator repeatedly uses the phrase 
>"winning God's grace."  In Swami Desika's original words, there is
>no hint of "winning"; Desika uses the word "hetu", but never
>is there even a hint of "winning" or "earning" grace. We 
>are best advised to be as careful when we discuss this topic

I feel that one should not give deep importance to semantics. If one starts
doing that, see what happens; let's take Sri Ramanuja's words in Sribhasya.
 In the context of explaining "yam eva esha vrunute teneha labyah....", he
states " Tad vaseekaranam tat sharanagatireva" - by the way the only
statement in Sri bhasya which talks about "prapatti".

The actual translation of this is : "to overpower or control Lord, one has
to surrender to him".  Watch the word "vaseekaranam" this is like to keep
Lord in control or over power him, literally.  

One could take offence at Sri Ramanuja's words and state that this amounts
to manipulating God and why is such a language used? etc.

I am sure and so are all of you that Sri Ramanuja did not mean it in a
wrong way. This is again semantics and language issue. 

This being the case, one should try to get the bottomline and view point of
an author instead of nitpicking on words. Let us contemplate well on deep
truths rather than these superficial issues.   Furthermore, to be honest,
even in laukika life language, one uses, even while speaking, generally
cannot transmit the same amount of information intended by a person.

Many things are beyond words.  Some are beyond mind too.

Adiyen Krishna Kalale

Krishna Kalale
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