Reply To: Introduction to the Vedantasara of Ramanuja by M. B. Narasimha Ayyangar (1953)

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advtanmoy
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अथातो ब्रह्मजिज्ञासा

I BOW unto Visnu, who has as his body all the sentient and non-sentient beings, who is the self of all objects, who is associated with Sri and who is the ocean of bliss untainted with impurity.

वेदान्तसार

परमपुरुषप्रसादात् वेदान्तसार  उद्ध्रियते-

अथातो ब्रह्मजिज्ञासा ॥ १ ॥

अत्रायमथशब्द आनन्तर्ये वर्तते, अतःशव्द्रशिरस्कत्वात् । अतः- शब्दश्च पूर्ववृत्तस्य हेतुभावे । पूर्ववृत्तं च कर्मज्ञानमिति विज्ञायते, आरिप्सितस्य ब्रह्मज्ञानस्य वेदार्थविचारैकदेशत्वात्। अधीतवेदस्य हि पुरुषस्य, कर्मप्रतिपादनोपक्रमत्वाद्वेदामां, कर्मविचारः प्रथमं कार्य इति “अथातो घर्मजिज्ञासा” इत्युक्तम् । कर्मणां च प्रकृतिविकृतिरूपाणां धर्मार्थकामरूपपुरुषार्थसाधनतानिश्चयः “प्रभुत्वादार्त्विज्यम्” इत्यन्तेन सूत्रकलापेन संकर्मेण  कृतः ।

एवं वेदस्यार्थपरत्वे कर्मणां च तदर्थत्वे तेषां च केवलानां त्रेिवर्गफलत्वे निश्चिते सतेि, वेदैकदेशभूतवेदान्तभागे केवलकर्मणामल्पा- स्थिरफलत्वं ब्रह्मज्ञानस्य चानन्तस्थिरफलत्वमापाततो दृष्ट्वा, अनन्तरं मुमुक्षोरवधारितपरिनिष्पन्नवस्तुबोधजननशब्द्रशत्तेः पुरुषस्य ब्रह्मबुभुत्सा जायत इति ‘अथातो ब्रह्मजिज्ञासा’ इति कर्मविचारानन्तरं तत एव हेतोर्ब्रह्मविचारः कर्तव्य इत्युक्तं भवतेि ।

Vedantasara or the quintessence of Vedanta is extracted and offered to the public by the grace of the Highest Person.

1. Athto Brahma-jijnasa

Then therefore the inquiry into the Brahman.

Here the word, then is used in the sense of coming thereafter; because it is followed by the word therefore. The word, therefore, is used in the sense of causation of that which has been concluded previously. What has been concluded previously, is understood to be the knowledge of ritualistic works; because the inquiry into the Brahman, which is desired to be commenced here, happens to be a portion of the inquiry into the meaning of the Vedas. Indeed, for the person, who has completed his study of the Vedas, the first duty is to make an inquiry into the ritualistic works, as the Vedas commence to deal with them in the beginning. Hence it is stated ” Then therefore the inquiry into the Dharma ” (Mim. 1. 1. 1). Taking the topic of Dharma separately, it is determined in the series of Sutras ending with “The priestly function must be common for all the castes as all are able to do it” (Mim. 12-4-40) that the rituals of Prakrti and Vikrti kinds2 are only the means to attain the three-fold object of human pursuit viz. Dharma (i.e. ritualistic works), Artha (i.e. wealth) and Kama (i.e.gratification of desire)

The Vedas naturally imply their meaning. The ritualistic works are their meaning. It is also determined that these mere works can grant only the three-fold object of human pursuit stated above. It is roughly realised in Vedanta, which is a portion of the Vedas, that the ritualistic works give only small and transitory results and the Brahman-realization only can produce infinite and eternal results. Then, in the person, who wants to attain Moksa (i.e. final release), and who has determined.