[INDOLOGY] jIvanmukti

Aleksandar Uskokov uskokov at uchicago.edu
Wed Nov 1 03:20:11 UTC 2017

Dear Patrick,

Sankara (who does not use the term jivan-mukti except once in the
Bhagavad-gita-bhasya, but "if it walks like a duck ...") under
Brhad-aranyaka 1.4.7 justifies the need for nididhyasana the third Vedantic
process, when the Self had been known (and, eo ipso, liberation attained)
by the application of sravana and manana the first two processes, with the
consideration that the karma that had started bearing fruits trumps
knowledge of the Self. Thus even the knower of the Self needs restrain
(niyama) to guard against the functions of the body, mind, and senses. It
must follow, theoretically, that there is a danger, however slight, that
the state of liberation could be lost, or perhaps that final liberation
could be delayed through relapse in identification.

It is probably worthwhile to remember that jivan-mukti did not mean the
same thing to everyone (and not to forget its aspect of freedom from the
requirement to perform one's duties). Thus Bhaskara, who argued vehemently
against jivan-mukti as Advaitins understood it under Brahma-Sutra 3.4.26-7,
claiming that liberation in life was not possible, nevertheless affirmed
explicitly a form of jivan-mukti under BS 4.1.14, that is, freedom from the
psychological torments such as passion and aversion (śarīra-pāte tu viduṣo
muktir avaśyaṁ-bhāvinīti | dvidhā-muktir jīvad-avasthāyāṁ rāga-dveśa-mohaiḥ
tad-aṅgaiś ca madādibhir vimuktiḥ | pātottara-kālam ātyantikīti). Since
final liberation happens only after death, provided one maintained perfect
meditation on Brahman and the performance of one's ritual till death, it
must also follow that this kind of jivan-mukti could theoretically be lost
as well, by slacking in meditation and ritual.

All best

On Tue, Oct 31, 2017 at 7:39 PM, patrick mccartney via INDOLOGY <
indology at list.indology.info> wrote:

> Dear Friends,
> Is there any mention that, once the state of *jīvanmukti* is attained,
> can it be undone or reversed? Or, is it a theoretically permanent
> disposition?
> Thanks.
> All the best,
> Patrick McCartney, PhD
> JSPS Fellow - Kyoto University
> Visiting Fellow - Australian National University
> Skype - psdmccartney
> Phone + Whatsapp:  +61 414 954 748 <+61%20414%20954%20748>
> Twitter - @psdmccartney
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