The Sampradaya, or tradition of interaction in personal study and dialog between teacher and student is the foundation of enabling the Upaniśad, the teachings, to function as a pramana, or means of knowledge revealing something about the self, about me, not available through any other pramana or means of knowledge available to us through which we know the world. The sampradaya is the continuing stream of teachers,who matured in the same stream, who also experienced the teachings as a pramana, a means to reveal something about the subject that can never be know in the world of objects, the stream of oral teacher student interaction in order to share knowledge only available through that sharing… Since meeting Swami Dayananda Saraswati in 1997 or so I have bathed in that stream daily, with his teachings and those he has trained, and I go to weekly local classes here in the Bay with one of his long time students… So a rive metaphor holds the lineage through time for me often, and in the teachings.
Through certain teaching methods, prakriyas, the teachers are the means unfold the meaning in the text such that the student is seeing something about their current direct experience, meaning not speculative, as the topic is always nearest.
It is me.
And do we not love to be?
The teachers hold the practices, the sadhana, the tapah, he means for the end, the self-study, svadyaya and self-knowledge, brahma vidya:
1. The Nididhyasana, Meditation,
2. Sravana, listening to the teachings of the text unfolded as pramana by the teacher.
3.and Manana or assimilation of the teachings in a personal meaningful and relevant way;
and other guidance that is formed from the student’s progression over time.
These challenges of svadya are is explored in a good introductory fashion in the East Bay Citta Chat#1, which explores the challenges in studying me, cuz who is going to do that if not me? See below for full 60 minute FREE audio class.
But if “I” am looking at “me,” who is that?
Kinda feels like a Dr. Seuss book.
Sankara was a unique teacher of the Upaniśad in both the scope, lucidity and pervasive longevity of his influence.
His methods, his bhasya, or commentary on the source texts, or śastra, go into the method of stating the premise, exploring the objections and then further unfolding that has been passed down orally for generations following him. Swami Dayananda Saraswati is in this sampradaya stream, and will usually refer to Sankara’s premises or views, or how he stated objections in most talks.
End Swami Dayananda Saraswati quote.