“ Yes Vedanta unfolds the profound Knowledge of the Seers, known as Vedanta, and the Sanskrit Language to all willing students… ”
Vedanta is a tradition sourced in Vedas of India — revealing the depth of non-dual teachings within the three major texts: Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita and Brahma Sutras. Further elaborated by texts like: Adi Shankara's Vivekachudamani, Tattva Bodha, Aparokshanubhuti − and Vidyaranya's Panchadasi.
Yes Vedanta's purpose is to systematically unfold the methodology of these texts, so the student can actually arrive to the same understanding, vision or realization of the absolute reality as oneself — right here and now.
What is Vedanta?
Vedanta is not a philosophy. Not a school of thought. Not a system of beliefs which can be negated from different angles. Not a set of contentions.
It remains independent of your thoughts about it. Just how one's existence remains independent of whether one verbally acknowledge one's existence or not.
Vedanta is a systematic and structured means of knowledge which establishes absolute clarity of the whole reality as yourself. Means of knowledge means, that by which one accomplishes the ultimate end (moksha / self-realization).
More specifically, the methodology reveals the ever-present truth about yourself (jīva), universe (jagat) and Existence-Consciousness (Īśvara/Brahman). Showing you that you are that very truth right now (tat tvam asi).
Until then, ignorance causes one to seek “THE reality” as though it's separate from oneself. This motivates one to apply countless actions in hopes to discover something bigger. Which results in frustration for many because it doesn't bring about permanent contentment, but temporary reliefs.
It's like a wooden chair doing different meditation techniques for years – hoping to discover the wood which it considers the ultimate Reality. In truth, the chair is always only the wood.
Similarly, a sincere seeker of truth will never become the sought – because the seeker is actually the sought right now. It's a matter of discovering how this is so. And this is what Vedanta serves to resolve once and for all.
Learn more about Yes Vedanta, and Ācārya (teacher) Andre.
Vedānta comprises of three primary texts, known as the triple canon (prasthāna trayī). They form the foundation of Vedānta:
Upaniṣads (Śruti / Heard)
There are ten principal Upanishads which include:
- Bṛhadāraṇyaka (Brihadaranyaka)
- Chandogya (Chāndogya)
- Isha (Īṣa)
- Katha (Kaṭhopaniṣad)
- Prashna (Praśna)
- Mandukya (Māṇḍūkya-Upaniṣad)
- Mundaka (Muṇḍaka)
- Taittiriya (Taittirīya)
Bhagavad Gita (Smṛti / Remembered)
Bhagavad Gita is the essence of the Upanishads that teaches how to realize the highest – while living in the world. It consists of 700 verses across 18 chapters and is part of the Indian epic Mahabharata.
If the Upaniṣads (highest truths) be represented by cows, then Gītā would be the milk of the cows (essence of the truths) extracted by Kṛṣṇa (supreme inner Self; Ātman) for the benefit of Arjuna (individual ignorant self believing is apart from the Whole) – who is unsure of the right path in midst of the battle of Kurukṣetra (struggle of life).
Brahma Sutras (Nyāya or Logic)
Brahma Sutras (Vedanta Sutras) is the philosophical treatise of Vedanta that systematically lays out the philosophy of the Upanishads. It consists of 555 aphorisms across 4 chapters. It should be studied along with the commentary of Shankaracharya for a deep and comprehensive understanding of Advaita (Non-Dual) Vedanta.
There are many commentaries (prakarana grantha) written by some of the greatest Vedanta philosophers, like Adi Shankara and Swami Vidyaranya. Both contributed to clarifying many verses and principles from Main Texts above. They include:
- Advaita Makaranda
- Aparokshanubhuti (Aparokṣānubhūtiḥ)
- Atma Bodha
- Panchadasi (Pañcadaśī)
- Tattva Bodha
- Vedanta Dindima
Few more Vedantic classics:
Om Tat Sat
– Bhagavad Gita 17.23