adi shankara preached smarta dharma

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Adi Shankara Preached Smarta Dharma


Adi Shankara Preached Smarta Dharma Contents1. 1 Contents in Brief2. 2 Adi Sankara Preached Smarta Dharma3. 3 Smarta and Shanmata4. 4 Some Personal Thoughts5. 5 Adi Shankara Bhagavadpada was not a Shaiva, nor a Vaishnava, nor a Shakta6. 6 smArta - a PUrNa vaidika dharma7. 7 Did smArta dharma exist prior to Adi Sankara?8. 8 Adi Shankara's Parents were Shiva bhakta-s9. 9 Each Form of God has Distinctive Characteristics1. 9.1 One-pointedness is necessary2. 9.2 But how can attributes which are generally related to Shiva be considered as that of Vishnu, one may ask.3. 9.3 Wrong interpretation of Adi Shankara Bhagavadpada's commentary leads to erroneous conclusion10. 10 Lord Shiva and Maa Parvati is Ishvara says Adi Shankara in Kena Upanishad11. 11 Lord Shiva is Atman, Brahman and Paramatma, the supreme Self says Adi Shankara in Gita12. 12 Adi Sankara didn't translate 'ISA' as 'rudra' in his gItA bhASya on verse BG 11.1513. 13 Adi Shankara's Interpretation of Shiva and Rudra in Vishnu Sahasranama1. 13.1 Introductory verses of Vishnu Sahasranama2. 13.2 Siva-viShNu abheda in intro verses of viShNu samhasranAma3. 13.3 23 keSava4. 13.4 25 sarva5. 13.5 26 Sarva6. 13.6 27 Siva7. 13.7 38 Sambhu8. 13.8 64 ESAna9. 13.9 114 rudra10. 13.10 335 purandara11. 13.11 491 mahadevah12. 13.12 582 SAntah13. 13.13 584 SAntih14. 13.14 600 Siva14. 14 Common names and some selected names in Shiva Sahasranama1. 14.1 Shiva and Vishnu2. 14.2 Shiva and Brahma3. 14.3 Shiva and Krishna4. 14.4 Shiva and Kurukshetra5. 14.5 Shiva's Macrocosmic form (VirATa SvarUpa)6. 14.6 Some Qualities of Shiva7. 14.7 Shiva and deluge8. 14.8 Shiva is everything9. 14.9 Shiva as Brahman10. 14.10 Shiva as ParamAtmAn11. 14.11 Shiva and Linga15. 15 Adi Shankara Praises Lord Shiva as Para Brahman in Dakshinamurty Stotram16. 16 Adi Shankara Bhagavadpada on OM, Shiva and Paramatma in Mandukya Upanishad17. 17 Adi Shankara Bhagavadpada Praises Shiva (Shambho) as Ishvara and confirms non-duality with the Lord18. 18 Adi Shankara Bhagavadpada explains Namah Shivaya in Shiva PanchAkshara Mantra19. 19 Adi Shankara Bhagavadpada in Veda Sara Shiva Stavan praises Shiva as supreme20. 20 Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva appear to be different due to mAyA says Adi Shankara in mAyA panchakam21. 21 praSnottara ratna mAlikA defines who is the supreme God22. 22 Adopting of Double Standards by Rival Schools23. 23 Non-Duality of Shiva-Vishnu stated by Madhusudan Sarasvati24. 24 Non-Duality of Shiva-Vishnu in Suta SamhitA of Skanda PurANa25. 25 Ganesha is Self Born says Shiva in Linga PurANa26. 26 VinAyaka in Shankara BhASya 9.2527. 27 Maa Bhavani is supreme in Soundarya Lahiri28. 28 Shiva-Vishnu (Narasimha) abheda in Narasimha Purva Tapaniya Upanishad29. 29 Shiva-Vishnu (Narasimha) abheda in Narasimha Uttara Tapaniya Upanishad30. 30 Conclusion

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Contents in Brief

smArta dharma is an ancient dharma practiced by many people smArta dharma existed prior to Adi Sankara smArta dharma has sanction in veda-s Adi Sankara preached smArta dharma Proofs are given that support the claim of Adi Sankara preaching smArta dharma

Adi Sankara Preached Smarta Dharma

Some believe that Adi Shankara and the present advaitins are all Shaiva-s. All 5 Advaita Matha-s wear Vibhuti-s and daily perform ChandramaUleSvara PujA. Based on the commentaries on PrasthAntrayi, many believe that Adi Shankara did not preach Smarta Dharma, as the ideology is not reflected in his commentaries. To add to it, many hymms attributed to him, which praise other deities like Devi (Shakti), Ganesha, Shiva are considered of dubious authenticity. Others claim that Adi Shankara was a Vaishnava who only equated Vishnu with Brahman. Typically, Adi Shankara was Vaishnava, Shaiva, Shakta all at a time by being an advaitin. He was not exclusively devoted to any one deity and did not preached worshiping only one deity. So he was neither a Vaishnava, nor Shaiva nor a Shakta. Later on, we will find reference from his works supporting his claim.First let us understand who are smArta-s.

Smarta and Shanmata

smArta-s are the ones who follow Smriti-s. Smriti-s are called as notes from memory. What is being recalled from memory? They are Veda-s. Great Rishi-s who had mastered Veda-s noted down from their memory 18 Smriti-s. People following injunctions of Smriti-s are called SmArta-s. People following directly veda-s are called Shrauta-s. Smriti-s deal with moral and ethical conduct, have some rules that are to be followed for peaceful and harmonious living. Since Smriti-s are derived from Shruti-s (veda-s), they are considered as second in authority. Since they comply veda-s, and are derived from them, SmArta-s too abide by Veda-s. Hence any pramAna (evidence of proof) found in either Smriti-s or Shruti-s, cannot be discarded or overlooked. smArta-s daily perform Panchayatna Puja. Panchyatna puja or panch dev puja includes worship of Ganesh, Shiva, Shakti, Vishnu and Surya.Some are of opinion that this system of worship is being practiced before the time of Adi Shankara. Adi Shankara may not be the originator of this system, but he was definitely it's preacher. Adi Shankara was a Jagadguru. Adi Shankara added the sixth deity Skanda to the five to unite people all over India. Worshipping 6 deities is called as Shanmata.In Panch Dev Puja, each deity has a variant of Gayatri mantrasanctionedby Vedas says Kanchi Paramacharya. We find many variants of Gayatri mantra in Maha Narayana Upanishad. We have Atharvashirsha-s of all 5 deities, which are a part of Atharva veda. In Atharvashirsha-s each deity is eulogized as supreme. Panchdev Atharvashirsha Sangrah published by Gita Press in Sanskrit-Hindi is available here

We have Purusha Suktam, Sri Suktam, Sri Rudram and many other hymms dedicated to different deities.SmArtas were all Advaitins according to Kanchi Paramacharya. Advaita has a place for all forms of God and for all vedic philosophies. Adi Shankara has accepted all upto a point and then asked us to rise above it, as it is not the final destination. It is said that Adi Shankara did not create any new sampradAya. Hence calling his philosophy and Shankara's Advaita would not be correct. The reason for Advaita and SmArta being ancient could be found out from certain facts.

Some Personal Thoughts

SmArta-s regard Veda-s as supreme authority. Since Ishvara has created ours and many other worlds, we have to humbly respect his creation. To govern his creation, has given authority and power to certain devatA-s. Lord hasthe supreme Lord has revealed us veda-s, which are his breath andhas asked us to worship devatA-s and offer oblations to them in a way and form that are acceptable to them.It is our duty to respect devatA-s who are a superior race than us, humans. While performing vedic yagna-s, we have to invoke Agni deva (Fire Lord), who then will take our oblations to all other devatA-s and the Trinity. It is customary to invoke first Lord GaNesha before starting any yagna to remove the obstacles. If we argue that Lord Krishna or Lord Shiva is the Lord of all and nothing is beyond his capacity to grant us what we need and there is nothing that he cannot give, so I will only and only worship by beloved Lord. If I argue in this way, then even though I am technically right, we have to respect the creation of Lord and have to work in a way that he wants us to work. Devata-s help us maintain ecosystem. It is by their grace that we get suitable climate, suitable rain and seasons. We have not reached inner purity to an extend that our Guru thinks us fit for karma-sanyAsa. Hence we have to keep following veda-s and worship devatA-s and offer our oblations to them. Some say it is a sin to worship anya-devatA. I would not agree with this. Agreeing would mean an insult to our beloved Lord, as everything works according to his will. After gaining inner purity, upanishads asks us to renounce kAmya karma i.e. renounce agni meaning vedic rights.

We should not forget that Gita is a Moksha SAStra and not dharma SAStra. Hence Gita also asks us to renounce all karma-s and duties and surrender to the Lord. But this upadesha is given in chapter 18, which is Moksha SanyAs YOga (BG 18.66). As the name suggests and from the commentary of our AchArya, we know that one has to renounce vedic rites. We also have torenouncedharma (righteousness,meritoriousdeeds) and a-dharma (wrong deeds, sinful deeds). Bhagavan in BG 7.3 says -Among thousands of men, one perchance strives for perfection; even among those successful strivers, only one perchance knows Me in essence (tatva).Hence we can conclude that only a few have such inner purity to renounce vedic rites and become sanyAsin-s, rest all have to perform vedic rites and follow dharma.

Let us now continue to understand who Adi Shankara was.

Following are the words of Kanchi Paramacharya in the sections - Adi Shankara Bhagavadpada was not a Shaiva / Vaishnava

Adi Shankara Bhagavadpada was not a Shaiva, nor a Vaishnava, nor a Shakta

Kanchi Paramacharya has given us the explanation of Advaita and SmArta Dharma. Please visit the below link for more details

Sankara SampradAyam

though the entire writeup is very useful, articles related to our topic are found on pages Page 13 and 14smArta - a PUrNa vaidika dharma

To continue the above discussion, only a SmArta dharma or sampradAya is pUrNa vEdic dharma, as it does not denigrate any other deites to claim the supremacy of the chosen deity.

Please find some notes in brief. Original content is found on the same source, i.e. Shankara SAmpradAya, page 14

This is one of cardinal principles of the vEdic religion known as smArthA matham. While denigrating the other deity, if one's dEvathA is claimed to be 'the' dEvathA, then it can not be considered to have the acceptance of vEdA. Going by this test, only we - the sm