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Advaita for the 21st Century

Tattvabodha - Part 29


Notes on Tattvabodha
तत्वबोधः
Dr. Vishnu Bapat


Dr. Bapat (72) was the co-founder of an Ayurvedic Pharmaceutical Industry and served as its Managing Director for 26 years until retirement. He is associated with several professional and spiritual bodies. He is now fully engaged in the study and practice of Vedanta.

 

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57. Residuary karma phala of wise man

किञ्च ये ज्ञानिनं स्तुवन्ति भजन्ति अर्चयन्ति तान्प्रति ज्ञानिक्रतं आगामि पुण्यं गछति ।

ये ज्ञानिनं निन्दन्ति द्विषन्ति दुःखप्रदानं कुर्वन्ति तान्प्रति ज्ञानिकृतम् सर्वमागामि क्रियमाणं यद्वाच्यं कर्म पापात्मकं तद्गछति ।

सुर्हदः पुण्यक्रत्यं दुह्रदः पापक्रत्यं ग्रह्णन्ति इति ।।

किञ्च – also ये – those ज्ञानिनम् – the wise man स्तुवन्ति – praise भजन्ति – serve अर्चयन्ति – adore तान् प्रति – towards them ज्ञानिकृतम् - done by the wise man आगामि – future पुण्यम् – the results of good action- गच्छति – goes ये – who ज्ञानिनम् – the wise man निन्दन्ति – criticize द्विषन्ति – hate दुःखप्रदानम् -कुर्वन्ति – cause pain तान् प्रति – towards them ज्ञानिक्रतम् – done by the wise man सर्व – entire आगामि – future क्रियमाणम् – actions due for performance that means agami karma यत् – which अवाच्यम् – non- mentionable, which cannot be uttered कर्म – actions पापात्मकम् – sinful तद् – that गच्चति - go सुर्हदः – friends पुण्यक्रत्यम् – meritorious दुह्रदः – the enemies पापक्रत्यम् – sinful ग्रह्णन्ति – take इति - thus

The fruits of stored and unutilized good actions done by the wise man go to those who praise, adore and worship the persons of knowledge. And the fruits of all stored and un-utilized sinful actions and non-mentionable actions go to those who criticize, hate or cause pain to the wise man.

What happens to unclaimed Punya and papa of a jnyani?

The wise man has made all preparations for his exit from the world. He has taken care of his sanchita and agami karmas by extinguishing them with the fire of knowledge. What about the balance of karmas left out if any? If they are not destroyed or apportioned, the wise man will have to take birth again. The author says here what happens to such residue karmas.

ये ज्ञानिनम् स्तुवन्ति भजन्ति अर्चयन्ति तान् प्रति ज्ञानिक्रतम् आगामि पुण्यम् गच्छति – Agami karma fruits of the good deeds done by the wise man go to them who worship him and take care of him.

ये ज्ञानिनम् निन्दन्ति द्विषन्ति दुःखप्रदानम् कुर्वन्ति तान् प्रति ज्ञानिक्रतम् सर्व आगामि क्रियमाणम् यत् अवाच्यम् कर्म पापात्मकम् तद् गच्चति – Agami karma fruits of the bad and unmentionable deeds done by the wise man go to them who criticise, hate or persecute him.

सुर्हदः पुण्यक्रत्यम् दुह्रदः पापक्रत्यम् ग्रह्णन्ति इति – In short, his friends are gifted with the fruits of his meritorious deeds and foes with sinful deeds.

 

Can karmaphala or the fruits of action be transferred from one person to another? If so it is against the law of karma which says that each one is responsible for his actions. We must remember that agami karma expressed itself into fruits mostly in the next birth. In the case of the wise since he has disassociated with his body and doer-ship the fruits of his action should go somewhere. Moreover the haters and critics of the wise man should receive punishment for their sin and his friends should receive appreciation for their good actions. For this reason the karmaphala is transferred.

 

ऐक्य ज्ञान फलम्

4. Benefit of the knowledge of essential identity

58. The Bliss of identity with Brahman

ब्रह्मानन्द फलम्

तथा चात्मवित्संसारं तीर्त्वा ब्रह्मानन्दमिहैव प्राप्नोति तरति शोकं आत्मवित्’इति श्रुतेः ।

तनुं त्यजतु वा काश्यां श्वपचस्य ग्रहेऽथवा ।

ज्ञानसम्प्राप्तिसमये मुक्तोऽसौ विगताशयः इति स्मृतेःश्च ।

तथा – thus च – and आत्मवित् – the knower of the self, wise man संसारम् – the samsara of prarabdha, sanchita and agami karma bondage तीर्त्वा – having crossed ब्रह्मानन्दम् - the supreme bliss, infinite Ananda इह – here एव alone प्राप्नोति – gains तरति – crosses शोकम् – sorrow इति – thus श्रुतेः – the Shruti says तनुम् – body त्यजतु – may it be discarded वा – or काश्याम् – in Kashi श्वपचस्य – of a dog eater’s ग्रहे - house अथवा – or ज्ञानसम्प्राप्तिसमये – at the time of attaining knowledge मुक्तः – liberated असौ – he विगताशयः – free from results of action इति – thus स्मृतेः – Smruti as well

Thus the knower of the self attains the bliss of Brahman, having crossed this miserable worldliness in this life itself. The Shruti affirms that, the knower of the self transcends sorrow. It is immaterial if the realized man casts off his body either in holy Kashi or in the house of a dog-eater since he has destroyed all desires of action.

तथा च आत्मवित् संसारम् तीर्त्वा ब्रह्मानन्दम् इह एव प्राप्नोति -Thus the knower of the self crosses over the miserable samsara and attains absolute bliss in this very life. संसार is the world of objects or the earth. Samsara means ever changing, unstable.

संसरति इति सम्सारम्. Entire realm or time, space and objects are called samsara. The life in the world is full of trials and tribulations, agony and felony, short-lived happiness, our endeavour to acquire it and efforts to hold it. These are all limitations. But God is supreme bliss where there is no tinge of limitation, fear and grief. He is infinite. He is supreme bliss Brahmananda.

इह एव प्राप्नोति - This infinite unlimited bliss is not a promise of haven. The Acharya says the bliss would be available right now in this world. This is called Jivanmukti.

आत्मवित् शोकम् तरति इति श्रुतेः –The Vedas declare that the knower of Brahman transcends all grief. Brahmananda has no tinge of grief. In that case a question arises: does a knower of table become table? Certainly No. Knower of Brahman is one who has subjectively realized the nature of Brahman. Brahman is not an object to be known. It is the very subject of the seeker.

आत्मवित् तनुम् त्यजतु काश्याम् वा श्वपचस्य ग्रहे – Let the knower of Brahman cast off his body either in the holy city of Kashi or in the house of a dog eater, it makes no difference for him because he is already liberated at the time of his death. Does a man who casts off his body in the city of Kashi automatically become Brahman? Or does a man who dies in the home of a low cast become a sinner? These statements are exaggerations and have no support from Vedanta which is a universal scripture.

आत्मवित् आत्मैव भवति, ब्रह्मवित् ब्रह्मैव भवति, the knower of Brahman or truth becomes Brahman or truth himself. Extending this argument, can we say the knower of a tree becomes the tree? This is not possible. The knower of an object does not become the object. In the first place Brahman is not an object but he is the very subject of study. Secondly there is no becoming Brahman. When the blinding ignorance is removed, the wise man realizes that he is of the very nature of supreme bliss and it is therefore said he becomes Brahman.

असौ ज्ञानसम्प्राप्तिसमये मुक्तः, विगताशयः इति स्म्रतेः – even at the time of getting knowledge he has become liberated and what to talk of after death? The place of death cannot affect him because he is free from all desires.

A wise man is already liberated when he is enlightened. He becomes free from all attachments say Smruti.

 

।। इति तत्वबोधप्रकरणं समाप्तम् ।।

Thus ends the prakarana called Tattvabodha

 

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To be continued with an Overview of the text...

 

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