In article <email@example.com>,
Vidyasankar Sundaresan <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
>As all Vaishnavas accept each other, as per Vijay's claim, then they
>should also accept Sankara's school. Of course, when it comes to a pinch,
Why? Sankara's school is not Vaisnva, as tehy mainly follow his
non-Vaisnav teachings. I have only seen it argued that Sankara
was a "closet Vaisnava", not that his school is Vaisnava.
>In article <email@example.com> firstname.lastname@example.org (Vijay
>Sadananda Pai) writes:
>> 1) Both accept the supremacy of Lord Vishnu
>So does Sankara.
His school does not. But he refers to the Gita as the essence
of all the Upanishads, and in his Gita-bhasya he shows the
awe and reverence of the devas to Vasudeva.
>> 2) Neither accepts the quantitative equality of jiva and Paramatma
>Nor does Sankara as such. All the criticism of the rivals is based on a
>fundamental misunderstanding of Sankara's explanation. The explanation of
>"tat tvam asi" the fundamental mahavakya, is clear on how the two are
>different as seen in themselves, but are in essence not different from one
>another in moksha. The very important qualification here, "moksha" is lost
>sight of in all these criticisms. I can dwell on Sankara's explanation in
>detail in a later post, if need be.
Vaisnavas accept distinctions of quantity even at moksa.
>> 4) Both accept the material world as real, but temporary
>What is temporary is not The Real. which can only be the eternal. So
>Sankara's conclusion does follow after all.
Only if you forget about the Visnu Purana statement about the Lord's
apara-prakrti, which is the material energy.
BG Chapter 17 describes the demoniac mentatlity as disbelief in
the world actually having a controller. If it has a controller
how can it be unreal?
>> 5) Both accept distinctions between matter and matter,
>> matter and jiva, jiva and jiva, matter and Paramatma,
>> and jiva and Paramatma.
>So does Sankara.
Vaisnavas accept disctinctions even at the point of moksa; there
is no question of bhakti (the perfection of brahma-bhuta)
unless there is a difference between the jiva and paramatma.
Refer to BG 18.54.
>> 8) Both consider scriptural evidence superior to evidence
>> gained by sensory observation or by argument
>So does Sankara. However, not even scripture can say that which is
>contradictory to reason. Thus that which is thrown up has to come down,
>even if someone quotes something that is claimed to be scripture against
>it. Scripture has little to do with that which can easily be obtained by
>sensory observation and logical processes. It's only purpose is to tell
>you that which cannot be touched by logic. Inspite of your claim, all your
>philosophical criticisms against advaita are based on nothing but
>argumentation. For scriptural evidence, you concoct a few verses and claim
>that it is found in the Padma Purana. In any case, Puranic evidence is
>sublated by the Upanishadic basis of advaita.
Refer to my post on the Upanishadic statement "aham brahmasmi". It is
not inherently advaitic.
>> 11) Both sampradayas chant the holy name of the Lord,
>> though their mantras are different
>So does the advaita samopradaya. Except that the advaita sampradaya is not
>sectarian so the Sri Rudram and Chamakam, (which have greater claim to be
>Vedic literature, by the way) are also chanted by advaita sannyasis, in
>addition to the Vishnu sahasranama.
Why does the Sri Rudram have greater Vedic standing than Vishnu mantras?
Even if you do refuse to accept smrti, the mantra "Om namo narayanaya"
appears in the Vedas and it says very clearly that one who recites this
mantra will literally have the Lord coming out of the page.
>> -- Vijay
>What really distinguishes them from non-Vaishnava groups is the sectarian
>putting down of Siva with respect to Vishnu. Some Vaishnavas are more
>interested in putting down Siva, rather than singing the praises of
Then they are false Vaisnavas. The Bhagavata describes Lord Siva
as one of the 12 mahajanas, and thus he deserves great respect
as the foremost leader of the Vaisnavas. There is a small temple
of Lord Siva at the Jagannath Puri temple complex, there are
temples of Gopisvara and Nandisvara in Vrindavan. The temple of
Hamsa-vahan Mahadev in Bengal had its renovations funded by
an ISKCON charity organization.
But of course none of these temples are riddled with advaita,
so I suppose they won't satisfy you anyway.