Brajanath Das, 26 December 2015
Please accept my humble obeisances!
All glories to Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu!
All glories to Srila Prabhupada!
While reading three stages of realization I got following doubts –
What is the difference between a Brahmavadi and a Mayavadi? What is their destination?
Different stages of Yogis realizations (in Paramatma realization)?
Please help me to understand.
Amala-Purana Das, 28 December 2015
Hare Krsna Prabhuji,
Please accept my humble obeisances!
All Glories to Srila Gurudeva and Srimati Gurumata!
All Glories to Srila Prabhupada!!
Brahmavadis are those who are attracted to the impersonal Brahman but they are not offensive to the Lord’s personal form or consider the Lord’s form as material; it’s just they are either ignorant of the personal conception or they are indifferent towards personal conception i.e. not attracted towards they personal form of the Supreme Lord.
Mayavadis on the other hand are so deeply rooted in their impersonal conception that they blaspheme the transcendental form of Supreme Lord, consider it material and temporary and as a tool to go “something beyond” hence they are condemned.
Srimad Bhagavatam gives us two examples, four kumaras and Srila Sukadeva Goswami who were Brahmavadis and later became devotees.
Four Kumaras already knew about Lord Visnu. They heard about Visnu from Brahmaji and so they wanted to explore and they came to Vaikuntha. Thus, they knew about Lord Visnu, had no offensive attitude towards Visnu; it was just that they were not attracted towards Visnu. But when the fragrance of Tulsi offered on Lord’s lotus feet entered their nostrils, it agitated their impersonal conception and they became devotees.
Similarly, when Srila Sukadeva Goswami heard about Krishna from one of the disciples of Srila Vyasadeva, he became attracted and came to Vyasadeva and learned further from him.
People today in pursue of their spiritual goals can become attracted to Impersonal Brahman. This could be because of culture or natural course of spiritual evolution: one can move from form to formless i.e. from matter to spirit. In this way many people can acquire impersonal conception of the ultimate realty. Now that impersonal conception can:
– translate to offensive mentality towards personal conception
– translate to ignorance of the personal conception
– be indifferent towards personal conception (i.e. not attracted). For example, Four Kumaras
Out of above three first category is Mayavadis and other two are Brahmavadis. Brahmavadis can be elevated to the personal conception and become devotees when they associate with the devotees. So we should also not put every “Impersonal Brahaman seeker” in the category of Mayavadis. We should try to understand their conception of ultimate reality and if they are Mayavadis then we should stay away from them else we should try to inform them about the personal conception of the Absolute truth and bring them in contact with devotees.
Hope it helps
Bhakta Sunil, 29 December 2015
Please accept my humble obeisances
All Glories to Vaishnavas
In reply to your question regarding difference between Brahmavadi and Mayavadi, the following conversation should help
Conversations and Morning Walks
1975 Conversations and Morning Walks
Brahmavādī means those who are aspiring to merge into the impersonal Brahman effulgence. Māyāvādīs remain fools forever. They have no knowledge. Aviśuddha-buddhayaḥ, always impure.
Morning Walk — July 2, 1975, Denver:
Harikeśa: Śrīla Prabhupāda, what’s the difference between a Brahmavādī and a Māyāvādī?
Prabhupāda: That you already questioned. We answered.
Harikeśa: I did?
Prabhupāda: Yes. (break) …vādī means those who are aspiring to merge into the impersonal Brahman effulgence.
Harikeśa: And Māyāvādīs, they do not attain that impersonal realization?
Prabhupāda: Māyāvādīs remain fools forever.
Harikeśa: They never leave this material platform.
Prabhupāda: They do not know. They have no knowledge. Aviśuddha-buddhayaḥ (SB 10.2.32), always impure. Otherwise how they are thinking, so ‘ham: “I am same. I am God. I am moving the sun, I am…” Such rascals, they remain always in ignorance. (break) …no sense that “If I am the same, then why I have fallen down in this māyā?” They say, “It is my līlā. I have become dog. So it is my līlā. I have become hog. It is my līlā.” (laughs) This is their philosophy. Hare Kṛṣṇa. (break) Māyāvāda. They are fools, mūḍha. Māyayāpahṛta-jñānā. They are described in the Bhagavad-gītā. Māyāvādī means māyayāpahṛta-jñānā: “Their knowledge has been taken away by māyā.” Fools. Either you call them fool or call them lowest of the mankind or the most sinful, whatever way you can call, they are like that. All good qualifications. Therefore Caitanya Mahāprabhu has warned, māyāvādī-bhāṣya śunile haya sarva-nāśa: (CC Madhya 6.169) “If you hear from Māyāvādī, then your spiritual life is finished.” It’s so dangerous.
Harikeśa: The Brahmavādīs have some possibility of advancement?
Prabhupāda: Oh, yes.
Harikeśa: What is that thing that enables them to advance?
Prabhupāda: That you will know later on. First of all try to understand this. Don’t try to understand everything in a moment. That is foolishness.
Regarding second question, the following lectures should help :
Lecture on BG 4.24-34 — New York, August 12, 1966:
So anyway, either the Brahmavādī or Paramātmavādī or the bhakta, they are all tattva-vit. They are all transcendentalists. There is no difference. But as there are three classes in every sphere, so there are three classes in the transcendental field also. So here Bhagavad-gītā, the Lord recommends that jñāninas tattva-darśinaḥ (BG 4.34). You have to find out a person who is tattva-darśī, who has realized the Absolute Truth, either in Brahman conception or in Paramātmā conception or in Personality of Godhead conception because we have got different tastes. So the Paramātmā or the Supreme Absolute Truth is also manifested in three phases: Brahman, Paramātmā, Bhagavān. So anyway, either you select the impersonal Brahman conception of the Absolute Truth, either you select the localized supreme soul, Supersoul conception of the Absolute Truth, or you accept the highest, the Supreme Personality of Godhead Śrī Kṛṣṇa. Mattaḥ parataraṁ nānyat kiñcid asti dhanañjaya (BG 7.7). The Lord says that “This is the last phase of Absolute Truth, what I am, Kṛṣṇa.”
Lecture on BG 4.34 — New York, August 14, 1966:
And even in that knowledge field also… Of course, transcendental knowledge, as we have discussed already, they are viewed in different, three different angles of vision: the knowledge of Brahmavāda, or impersonal, impersonal Absolute Truth, and the knowledge of Paramātmā, the localized Supersoul, and the knowledge of Bhagavān, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead. There are different stages of development of knowledge. But the first beginning knowledge is that we must understand that “I am not this body. I am spirit soul, and my aim of life should be how to get out of this material entanglement.” That is knowledge. That is the beginning of knowledge.
Dra Varni, 04 January 2016
thank you Hare Krsna!!
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