By Eliot Deutsch, J. A. B. van Buitenen
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Extra resources for A Source Book of Advaita Vedanta
Knowledge of Brahman does not subserve rite; it is independent. II ( 18-20). This is shown by the praurfijikas ("hermits") for whom knowledge is prescribed, not ritual. III (21-22). Certain vidyiis are not mere glorifications but actual injunctions. IV (23-24). On the other hand certain legends are not subservient to ritual, but glorify the injunctions involved. V (25). Thus ascetics need no ritual, only knowledge. VI (26-27). Yet ritual action encourages the rise of a uidya in one's mind. VII (28-31).
XV, 16--20) A man obtains perfection by being devoted to his own proper action. Hear then how one who is intent on his own action finds perfection. By worshiping him, from whom all beings arise and bv whom all this is JJervaded, through his own proper action, a man attain; perfection. Better is one's own dharma, though imperfect, than the dharma of another, well performed. One does not incur sin when doing the action prescribed by one's own nature. One should not abandon his natural-born action, 0 Arjuna, even if it be faulty, for all undertakings are clouded with faults as fire by smoke.
If no records were kept, the more original teaching would be lost, apart from incidental survivals in quotations; if records were retained, the lesser prestige of them might well discourage later scholars from spending the time or the money on the transcription of these records, let alone on the commenting of them, and they would equally be lost. The limitation of the number of students of any one teacher made the continuity of a tradition as uncertain and arbitrary as the continuity of a family.
A Source Book of Advaita Vedanta by Eliot Deutsch, J. A. B. van Buitenen