Monday, March 06, 2006

Vedanta Tattva - Introduction


Salutations to all.

This is a forum which dedicates itself to the Truth underlying the illusory world & propounded in the Upanishads which are called as Vedanta denoting "end of knowledge" as well as the "last portion of Vedas".

As Sankara says in the Katha Upanishad introductory commentary, the word UPANISHAD denotes the knowledge of the ultimate reality of Adviteeya Brahman. The word Upanishad is derived from the root verb "SAD" which has three meanings (as given by Sankara):

1. Visharana - That which removes ignorance
2. Gathi - That which leads to the ultimate reality of Brahman
3. Avasaadana - That which reduces or negates the latent tendencies of the mind (vaasanaas).

As per Max Muller and other western philosophers, Upanishad is derived from "SAD" meaning "TO SIT". Upa means "NEAR" and Ni means "below". Thus Upanishad is the truth that is acquired by sitting near the Guru and under the feet of the Guru through the grace of the Guru.

Since we are all trying to follow the traditional followers so that straying away from the reality never happens, it is better to take the definition given by Sankaracharya.

Thus as per Sankara, Upanishads denotes the knowledge about the reality. Thus there can be a doubt as to how can "books" given knowledge about the reality. Hence the books are not to be called Upanishads. But Sankara answers this objection by saying that even though Upanishad refers to knowledge but still since it is through the books or works that we get knowledge, hence these works or scriptures are also called Upanishads.

Vedanta is ultimate in that it is a SUBJECTIVE SCIENCE. Anything objective is subject to change and is impermanent. This truth about the objective world is even accepted by science and every moment experienced by each one of us.

The Subject of Consciousness alone is eternal and independent. All other entities are dependent on Consciousness for their existence. Any dependent entity is only an illusion in the independent entity. This Subject of Consciousness is termed in Vedanta as Brahman and Atman. This Brahman is not different from oneself but it is one's own very nature of Consciousness. This is what Chandogya Upanishad emphasizes through the Mahavakya TAT TVAM ASI or THAT THOU ART.

Let us all strive to realize this ultimate reality of our own very nature of Brahman thereby getting rid of ignorance, which is the cause of all sorrows and sufferings in the world, and rejoice in the eternal bliss inherent in the Self.

The following are the blogs available in different topics on Vedanta:

Motto and Basics of Vedanta --

Upadesa Saram of Ramana Maharshi --
Analysis of Mahavakyas --
Analysis of Jeeva as per various systems --
Laghu Vakya Vritti --
Gita Bhakthi Yoga (Gita Chapter 12) --
Vakya Vritti --
Soundarya Lahari --
Srimad Bhagavatham --
Panchadasi Chapter ONE --
Mayavada Darpanam --
An Analysis of Shoonyavaada and Mayavaada --
Atma Bodha --
Bhaja Govindam --
Narada Bhakti Sutras --
Teachings of Mahatmas & their Biographies --
Vedanta Quiz --
Tattva Bodha --
Gita Purushottama Yoga (Chapter 15) --
Vedantaparibhasha --
Guru Gita --http://

Salutations to all.