Shri Datta Swami

Jnana Saraswati – Parabrahma Sutras


220. Ramanuja and Madhva only elaborated the second part of Shankara's teaching

ताभ्यां तस्य द्वितीयमुखं विस्तारभाषितम्।२२०।
tābhyāṁ tasya dvitīyamukhaṁ vistārabhāṣitam|220|

The second part of Shankara exposed in his prayers for the minority of theists in His time was elaborated in the commentaries of Ramanuja and Madhva.


 The present Advaitins were atheists in the previous births and sufficient time has passed in doing the worship of mediated God. The Advaitins worship the mediated God in all forms but the sincerity is not true because they believe that they and the mediated God are one and the same in the absolute plane. They feel that the difference is only in the present relative plane and that the difference is only due to ignorance. The Advaitin thinks that his ignorance about his Godliness is not yet removed fully and the ignorance of the Lord whom he worships is already removed. Except this apparent difference, the Advaitin feels that the Lord and Himself are one and same. The Advaitin feels that the moment he rises to the absolute plane, even this apparent difference between him and the Lord gets removed. Even the demon who claims that he is also God worshipped the Lord with true sincerity for a long time. After getting powers from the Lord through the boon, the demon becomes egoistic and feels that he is God since he is controlling the creation through his superpowers. The Advaitin is a worse case than even the demon because he is worshipping the Lord without true sincerity and he never worshipped the Lord with sincerity even for a little time. The Advaitin does not have any superpower granted by the Lord like the demon and cannot control anything in the world like an ordinary human being.

But his ignorance mixed with over-intelligence makes him say that he need not control the world since the world is unreal. It is again another dimension of ignorance because the world can never become unreal for him in the present relative plane and except God, none can exist in the absolute plane. To uplift such Advaitins only, Ramanuja and Madhva came down to stress the preaching of Shankara given through His composed prayers. The commentaries of Shankara were for the majority of atheists existing in His time as final goal and the same commentaries were intermediate stage for minority of theists existing in His time.

The prayers were for the same minority of theists existing in His time after passing the intermediate state. After Shankara, in due course of time, the situation is reversed and theists are in majority whereas atheists are in minority. In such a situation, Ramanuja and Madhva gave the commentaries in which the concept of Shankara presented in His prayers was stressed and elaborated. Hence, Ramanuja and Madhva have exposed the other side of Shankara which was already exposed to the minority of theists in His time. Therefore, Ramanuja and Madhva have propagated the second part of the preaching of Shankara only.

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