Questions tagged [vedanta]

Vedanta is one of the āstika schools of Hindu philosophy, based on the Upanishads and the Brahma Sutras.

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What percentage of Hindus belong to a sect that subscribes to the Vedanta school?

Indian schools of philosophy are traditionally divided into two categories, Astika and Nastika. Astika schools accept the authority of the Vedas as divinely revealed truth (shruti), whereas Nastika ...
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Why does God allow us to suffer?

If God is a force of good then why is there so much suffering in this world? I thought I had understood the answer to this question after watching this video. Basically it says that if we ...
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Are we really God?

If we are God, then why are we, the human race, so corrupt, violent and confused? It seems that, if we all were God, we would not be so destructive and brute beings such as you see on this planet. If ...
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Dvaita vs Advaita vs Vishistadvaita vs Shuddhadvaita vs any other

I hear these terms Dvaita, Advaita, Vishistadvaita, Shuddhadvaita, and may be any other XYZdvaita, etc in most of the questions but I am not very sure what do they refer to. Are these some communities ...
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Why is Sankaracharya accused as Pracchana Bauddha (crypto-buddhist) by many Vedantins?

Let us see some of the accusations of vedantins SANKARA’S ACCUSERS Bhaskara (9th Century CE), the propounder of bhedabheda-siddhanta was one of the earliest Indian philosophers to attack Mayavada. ...
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20 votes
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Why isn't there one Absolute Reality?

This is just to elicit opinion/discussion. There is no ''answer" to it really. You can choose to close it. But it is something that I always wondered about. In the annals of Sanaatana Dharma why isn'...
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'Playing football takes us nearer to heaven rather than reading Bhagavad Gita' but how and why?

That famous line above was uttered by none other than Swami Vivekananda. I admit that I haven't gone through the complete speech yet, but I am curious to know what he meant by that. Did he mean that ...
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What are the exact interpretations of four Mahavakyas by Dvaita, Vishishtadvaita and Advaita?

Note: You can write an answer from the perspective of one or more schools, whichever you know best and also I read somewhere that some schools consider Mahavakyas as quoted out of the context, if you ...
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According to ShankarAchArya in Advaita, is the universe "unreal" or "unworthy"?

Recently I came across one of the key quote, which sums up Adi ShankarAchArya's Advaita philosophy: The Brahman of the Upanishads is the only Reality, and everything else—this world of manifoldness—...
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What are all doctrines or philosophies discussed in Brahma Sutra?

Brahma Sutras (also known as Vedanta Sutras) have very profound significance in Vedanta Darshan. They systematize and summarize the spiritual and philosophical teaching of Upanishads. It is considered ...
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How do Dvaitins and Vishistadvaitins interpret this passage of Mahabharata?

Below is the passage from Shanti Parva of Mahabharat in the chapter 320. It describes how Suka (the son of Veda Vyas) attained moksha. When Suka through his power of Yoga goes in position of attaining ...
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Which are the principle texts/scriptures of Advaita Vedanta?

I want to learn & study the Advaita Vedanta. So, which are the principle texts/scriptures of Advaita Vedanta? In other words which are the major text/scripture related to Advaita Vedanta. I know ...
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Vedanta and Vishnu correlation

Except for Adi Shankara and Bhaskara, it is seen that all the Vedanta expounders are Vaishnavas viz. Ramanuja, Madhva, Chaitanya, Nimbarka and Vallabha. Is there any correlation of Vedanta and Vishnu? ...
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Is Atma the same as the body?

What logical arguments do our scriptures advance to show that Atma is not something material like the body? How do the six astika schools of Hindu Philosophy(Mimamsa, Samkhya, Yoga, Nyaya, Vaisheshika ...
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1 answer
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What is Shakti Visishtadvaita philosophy?

Does any one know what this(Shakti Visishtadvaita) philosophy is all about? I know what are dvaita, advaita philosophies but this is new one.
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Why self realization doesn't imply omniscience?

Why one is not omniscient even after self realization as in self realization one knows he is no other than Brahm. But Brahm is omniscient as well, then why one is not omniscient even after self ...
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Does the subtle body carry the prana airs after the death of the physical vessel?

The scripture 'Vedanta Sara' states that, the subtle body houses the 5 subtle jnanendriyas, 5 subtle karmendriyas, manas, buddhi, chitta, ahamkara and also the 5 prana airs. VS-77-87: These verses ...
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15 votes
0 answers
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How did the Advaita Acharya Gaudapada meet Vyasa's son Shuka?

The most prominent thinker of the Advaita Vedanta school is Adi Shankaracharaya, but he wasn't the founder of Advaita; Adi Shankaracharaya's guru Govinda and Govinda's guru Gaudapada were also ...
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1 answer
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How was the Madhu Vidya passed down before Dadhichi?

As I discuss in this question, by far the most popular school of Hindu philosophy is the Vedanta school, which bases its tenets on the doctrines laid out in the Brahma Sutras, a work by the sage Vyasa ...
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14 votes
3 answers
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What is the means of attaining Moksha according to the different Astika schools?

There are two kinds of schools of Indian philosophy, Astika and Nastika. Astikas accept the authority of the Vedas, whereas Nastikas reject the authority of the Vedas. The Astika schools are part ...
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What are Vivartavada and Ajatavada?

In some text relating to advaita I've found two Vada(वाद) i.e doctrine/thesis: Vivartavada (विवर्तवाद) Ajatavada (अजातवाद) I also found some mention Advaita Vedanta as Vivartavada. So, I want to ...
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Does Ramanujacharya believe that inhabitants of Brahmaloka attain Moksha when they die?

As I discuss in the this question, by far the most popular school of Hindu philosophy is the Vedanta school, which bases its tenets on the doctrines laid out in the Brahma Sutras, a work by the sage ...
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14 votes
1 answer
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How does the soul returns in the dead body when a dead person is revived using Amrita?

There are many references in our scriptures when deads are revived to life using Amrita and Mrita Sanjeevani Vidya.. A common accepted vedic doctrine is that soul (along with manomaya, vijnamaya and ...
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14 votes
1 answer
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Who is commentator Pishacha on Brahma Sutras?

Narayana Panditacharya gave a list of 21 commentators on the Brahma Sutras who preceded Madhvacharya. Here is the screenshot of 21 commentators: I want to know who is this commentator Pishacha? The ...
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13 votes
4 answers
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What is the validity of Authoritativeness of vedas?

Pramana is defined as that which is the means of valid knowledge ( Prama) In general three Pramanas are accepted by all vedantins. Prtyaksha ( Perception) Anumana ( Inference ) Sabda ( Verbal ...
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Which Upanishads are quoted in sage Vyasa's Brahma Sutras?

As I discuss in this answer, each of the four Vedas consists of four portions: Samhitas, the core part of the Vedas which consist of verses heard from the gods; Brahmanas, which provide instructions ...
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Was Ubhaya Bharati right in asking a question related to Kama Sutra?

I would like to split question into two parts: 1) Ubhaya Bharati was appointed the judge between Adi Shankaracharya and Mandana Mishra. After Mandana accepts defeat from Shankaracharya, why was ...
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What is the mystery of Hari Sankara Stotra composed by Adi Shankara?

Shankara Digvijaya states that when Adi Shankara reached temple of Hari Shankara then he composed such verses with ambiguous meaning which could praise for both Shiva and Vishnu at the same time. It ...
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13 votes
2 answers
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On what basis are 4 mahavakyas chosen?

There are many upanishadic statements. I want to know why these four only are considered mahavakyas? Prajnanam Brahma (प्रज्ञानम् ब्रह्म) Aham Brahma Asmi (अहम् ब्रह्म अस्मि) Tat Tvam Asi (...
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12 votes
3 answers
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K.S. Bhagavan's critique of Adi Shankara

An Indian writer named K.S. Bhagavan published in 1982 a book entitled Shankaracharya and Reactionary Philosophy = ಶಂಕರಾಚಾರ್ಯ ಮತ್ತು ಪ್ರತಿಗಾಮಿತನ. I heard that Bhagavan criticized Adi Shankara in ...
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12 votes
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Do scriptures give a method to recognize a truly self-realized person/jivanmukta? [duplicate]

Some schools accept the concept of self-realization or jivanmukta. Advaita, for example, is one such school. Not all schools accept this concept, so this question is limited in scope to only those ...
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12 votes
3 answers
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Is Bhagavad Gita text Shruti or Smriti?

We know that Hindu Scriptures are classified as: Shruti: "Which is heard", divine origin, authored by God. Smriti: "Which is remembered", attributed to an author, derivative work. Now I am confused: ...
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12 votes
4 answers
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What is Advaita?

(Using the "body" and "hand" instead of "Brahman" and "Atman") Ramanuja says, "the hand is the same as the body but the hand is not the body itself". Madhu says, "the hand is not the body and the ...
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How do non-vedanta darshanas deal with shruti statements about Brahman?

Vedanta schools extensively deal with the concept of brahman. What do non-vedanta schools like nyaya-vaishesika, samkhya-yoga etc say about shruti statements about Brahman? How do they reconcile ...
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6 answers
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Does Geeta have gender and caste discrimination verses?

In Geeta, Chapter 9 verses 32 and 33 have implications related to the superiority of particular varna and gender over the others. The verse states that "EVEN Women and Shudra can attain God". Does ...
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2 answers
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How many people have written commentaries on Brahma Sutras?

Is there a mention of commentaries on the Brahma Sutras before Adi Shankaracharya? How many commentaries on these works have survived? Please provide list from the existing commentaries as well as ...
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4 answers
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Are shudras allowed to take up sanyasa?

Vedantins consider Sanyasa the path of liberation and most of their acharyas have taken up sanyasa in order to attain jnana. If so then are shudras also allowed to take up sanyasa for the pursuit of ...
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11 votes
1 answer
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Reference request for Swami Vivekananda's quote on life coming from the moon

Swami Vivekananda makes a passing remark in one of his lectures (Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, V2 p90) of the following: By the by, it may interest some of you to know that there are ...
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11 votes
1 answer
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Did Adi Shankaracharya support animal sacrifice?

I had always assumed that the Advaitin philosopher Adi Shankaracharya opposed animal sacrifice in Vedic Yagnas (fire-rituals). Here is what this blog post says, for instance: In the 7th century A....
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11 votes
1 answer
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Have any Swaminarayan commentaries on the Brahma Sutras been translated into English?

Vishnu is said to have taught the principles of Vaishnavism to four disciples: Lakshmi, Brahma, Shiva and Sanatkumara. And in turn they started the four main Sampradayas or traditions of Vaishnavism: ...
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11 votes
1 answer
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Who is the Bhashyakara who pretended to criticize Pancharatra?

As I discuss in this answer, one of the early movements that was important to the development of Vaishnavism was the ancient Pancharatra movement, whose sacred texts consisted of detailed procedures ...
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11 votes
0 answers
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What are the 14 layers of the mind

I had read somewhere that in the vedas the awareness can be divided into four categories, i.e chitta (consciousness/conscience), manas (heart/want/desire), aham (ego) and buddhi (intelligence). Each ...
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5 answers
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I want scripture-based explanation for "God is Everywhere"

Most dominant philosophy in Hinduism is that God is everywhere and in everything. I want to understand this in more detail. As per science we know that around us there are two distinct things: Space-...
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10 votes
4 answers
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Question for Advaitins: If I am Brahman, then why do I (who is already Brahman) need to find out that I am Brahman? Who is this “I”?

I am Brahman. I need to find out that I am Brahman. But who is this “I”? “I” refers to Brahman. So, Brahman needs to find out that It (Brahman) is Brahman. This makes no sense.
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Why does Sankhya consider Prakriti as the root cause?

Are there any arguments provided by Sankhya school to hold Prakriti (Mula Prakriti or Pradhana), and not other things like atoms or consciousness, as the root cause of the universe? Maybe somewhere in ...
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3 answers
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Why Arjuna did not attain moksha/mukti despite the upadesha of GeetA?

GeetA is considered to be the "moksha shAstra" mainly by the vedantins and they have also conferred it the title or Gitopanishad. It also forms the core of Vedanta as it is the part of the prasthana ...
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How do Dvaitins interpret this verse of Brihadaranyaka Upanishad?

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad is a part of the Shukla Yajur Veda. The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad contains this verse (1.4.10): ब्रह्म वा इदमग्र आसीत्, तदात्मानमेवावेत् ‘अहं ब्रह्मास्मि’ इति । तस्मात् ...
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10 votes
2 answers
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What is the Advaita argument for why causes can't have real existence?

The Khandana Khanda Khadya is a work by the 12th century Advaitin philosopher Shri Harsha which seeks to demonstrate that all supposed means of knowledge are invalid. As I discuss in this question, ...
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10 votes
2 answers
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What is the Vishishtadvaitin equivalent to "Brahma Satyam Jagat Mithya Jeevo Brahmaiva Naparah"?

The philosophy of Advaita Vedanta was summed up by Adi-Shankara in a single verse: Brahma Satyam Jagat Mithya, Jivo Brahmaiva Naparah English Translation: Brahman is the only Truth, the world is ...
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10 votes
1 answer
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When did Rama tell Hanuman the Muktika Upanishad?

I've read the Wikipedia article on Muktika Upanishad which contains the list of 108 Upanishads. There it is written that: The canon is part of a dialogue between Rama and Hanuman. Rama proposes to ...
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