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The text systematizes and summarizes the philosophical and spiritual ideas in the Upanishads. Sutras were meant to assist the memory of the student who had gone through long discussions with his guru, as memory aids or clues and maximum thoughts were compressed in a few words which were unambiguous, giving the essence of the arguments on the topic.
The text reviews and critiques most major orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy as well as all heterodox Indian philosophies such as Buddhism, with the exception of Samkhya and Yoga philosophies which it holds in high regards and recurrently refers to them in all its four chapters, adding in sutras 2. The first chapter is regarded in Vedanta tradition as Samanvaya Harmony , because it distills, synchronizes and brings into a harmonious whole the seemingly diverse and conflicting passages in various Sruti texts.
The only source for the knowledge of this Brahman is the Sruti or the Upanishads. The sutras 1. The remaining sutras in Pada 1. The first chapter in sutras 1. The Pada 2. The sutras in Pada 2. The atomistic physico-theological theories of Vaisheshika and Samkhya school are the focus of the first seventeen sutras of Pada 2. The theories of other orthodox traditions are discussed in 2.
The first eight case studies in the third Pada of chapter 2 discuss whether the world has an origin or not, whether the universe is co-eternal with Brahman or is an effect of Brahman interpreted as dualistic God in theistic sub-schools of Vedanta , and whether the universe returns into Brahman periodically.
The last Pada of the second chapter extracts and summarizes the theories of human body, sensory organs, action organs and their relationship to Prana vital breath in the various Vedic Brahmanas and Upanishads. The topics discussed are diverse. Sections 3. Meditation is defined in Vedanta texts of commentary on the Sutras, states Klaus Witz, as "a continuous succession of comparable basic conceptions, beliefs, not interspersed with dissimilar ones, which proceeds according to the scriptures and relates to an object enjoined in the scriptures".
The Brahma-sutra, in Adhikaranas of third and fourth pada, states Thibaut, assert that there is no contradiction in these teachings and that "the different Upanishads have to be viewed as teaching the same matter, and therefore the ideas must be combined in one meditation". And for this very reason there is no need of the lighting of the fire and so on.
In sutras 3. The sutras, translates Thibaut, derive from the Vedic texts that there is "a prohibition of doing harm to any living creature", however, the scriptures state, "only in danger of life, in cases of highest need, food of any kind is permitted to be eaten". The last three sutras of the chapter 3 assert that a person, pursuing means to spiritual knowledge, should seek a childlike state of innocence, a psychological state that is free of anger, self-centeredness, pride and arrogance.
Fourth chapter Phala : the result : talks of the state that is achieved in final emancipation. This is the shortest chapter with 78 sutras and 38 adhikaranas. The opening sutras of chapter 4 continue the discussion of meditation as means to knowledge, with sutra 4. On the Soul's having attained the Highest light, there is manifestation of its real nature, as we infer from the word own.
The Self whose true nature has manifested itself is released; according to the promise made by scripture. The light into which the soul enters is the Self, owing to the subject-matter of the chapter. The released soul abides in non-division from the highest Self Brahman , because that is seen. The sutras in the text can be, and have been read in different ways. The text is part of the Prasthanatrayi , or the three starting points for the Vedanta school of Hindu philosophy.
The Vedas, according to Vedanta, consists of two parts, states Deussen, which show "far reaching analogy with the Old and New Testaments", a Part of Works karma-kanda which includes the benedictory mantras , sacrifices and ceremonies like the Old Testament, and a Part of Knowledge jnana-kanda which focuses on metaphysical questions about the world, creator, soul, theology, morals and virtues like the New Testament.
The prevalence of Vedanta thought is found not only in philosophical writings but also in various forms of Hindu literature, such as the epics, lyric poetry, drama and so forth. What is especially worthy of attention is that the Hindu religious sects, the common faith of the Indian populace, looked to Vedanta philosophy for the theoretical foundations for their theology.
The influence of Vedanta is prominent in the sacred literatures of Hinduism, such as the various Puranas, Samhitas, Agamas and Tantras. The majority of the traditional and conservative scholars in India today, called Pandits, are students of Vedanta, and an overwhelming number belong to the lineage of Shankara — five sixths of all Pandits, according to some authorities.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Part of a series on Hindu scriptures and texts Shruti Smriti Vedas. Other scriptures. Bhagavad Gita Agamas. Ramayana Mahabharata. Shastras and sutras. Chronology of Hindu texts. Adi Shankara's commentary: "Perception means Sruti ; for its validity it is not dependent on anything else; inference is Smriti ".
For example, Ramanuja counts sutras 2. See page li in Thibaut's Introduction. It is the cause of the evil that exists within the world. Remove ignorance and one will realize that atman is Brahman.
It is also the crucial philosophical issue within Advaita thought. Advaita need not explain why a perfect deity was motivated to create the world, nor why an all-loving God created a world with evil. Ultimately, for Advaita, there is no creation, nor any God who creates the world. The highest truth is Brahman, one without a second, the true self, atman.
However, the arguments offered by monist and theistic sub-schools of Vedanta differ, particularly those of Shankara, Madhva and Ramanuja, with the latter two also refuting the arguments of Shankara in this section. New Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. Klostermaier A Survey of Hinduism: Third Edition. State University of New York Press. Raju Structural Depths of Indian Thought. Indian philosophy. Hinduism topics. Rigveda Yajurveda Samaveda Atharvaveda. Samhita Brahmana Aranyaka. Ayurveda Dhanurveda Natya Shastra Sthapatyaveda.
Madhva, also known as Purnaprajna and Ananda Teertha . Nimbarka . Srikantha . Theistic Monism Saiva Siddhanta  . Vallabha . Shuka .
Sri Sri Jagadguru Shankaracharya Mahasamsthanam, Dakshinamanaya Sri Sharada Peetham, Sringeri
Brahma Sutra Bhashya of Shankaracharya – Translated by Swami Gambhirananda