VIVEKACUDAMANI of Sri Sankaracarya (Shankaracharya) (Sanskrit Text with Transliteration, Translation and Index)

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  Publisher's Note   Sri Shankaracharya established the profound validity of the holistic perspective of Advaita by his brilliant commentaries on the Prasthana Traya - the Upanishads, the Brahma Sutras and the Gita. But since these are scholarly and technical and a little hard for the ordinary aspirant to digest, he gave us, in his infinite compassion, a series of Prakarana Granthas or treatises wherein the Truth is presented in a very lucid form without, however, an...


Publisher's Note


Sri Shankaracharya established the profound validity of the holistic perspective of Advaita by his brilliant commentaries on the Prasthana Traya - the Upanishads, the Brahma Sutras and the Gita. But since these are scholarly and technical and a little hard for the ordinary aspirant to digest, he gave us, in his infinite compassion, a series of Prakarana Granthas or treatises wherein the Truth is presented in a very lucid form without, however, any dilution. In this genre the pride of place goes to Vivekachudamani, the Crest Jewel of Discrimination. In 580 mellifluous verses that are a joy to chant, the Acharya narrates a sustained dialogue between a Guru and a Sishya on the human predicament, the nature of Ultimate Reality and the means of attaining freedom from the trammels of Samsara. To study the Chudamani is indeed to feel wafted to realms of marvelous peace and certainty.

There are a few good English translations of this classic available, but the uniqueness of the volume we are presenting to our readers is that it echoes the personal experiences of that rara avis, a Jivanmukta. Swami Turiyananda, a direct monastic disciple of Sri Ramakrishna, was noted as much for his simplicity and austerity as for his deep scholarship and intuitive wisdom. A supremely practical Vedantin, he lived what he taught. He spoke not as a scribe but as one with authority. We are indebted to pravrajika Brahmaprana of the Sarada Convent, Santa Barbara for making the class notes of the great Swami's talks available to the larger reading public in the East and the West. She is to be particularly thanked for editing what happens to be the only English translation of a Vedantic text by a direct disciple of that Prophet of Harmony. Sri Ramakrishna.


Editor's Preface


Ida Anwell (Ujjvala), a pioneer American devotee who met Swami Vivekananda in the West and later became the disciple of Swami Turiyananda, was a witness to the early Ramakrishna-Vedanta movement in America. In fact, she took down in shorthand thirteen of Swami Vivekananda's lectures (which were later published in the Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda) and was asked by Swami Turiyananda to keep notes, carefully transcribed in her own handwriting, would make available to us one of the very few translations of a scripture by a direct disciple of Sri Ramakrishna?

Swami Turiyananda's translation of the Vivekacudamani is freestyle, but follows in paragraph-form Shankara's verse-by-verse format. It appears that, at times, Swami Turiyananda would splice several verses together into one "gist" verse, whereas at other times he would skip a verse altogether. But, by and large, ida Ansell's notes show us that Swami Turiyananda presented and translated most of Shankara's verses.

As it is a well-known fact that the Swami chanted regularly before his American ashrama students, and in order to make available Swami Turiyananda's translation to a wider audience, it seemed fitting to preface each English verse with its corresponding, numbered, transliterated Sanskrit verse. This format will enable students of the Vivekacudamani to locate particular verses more easily and to follow Swami Turiyananda's translation, if need be, along with the more literal and extensive translations of Swamis Madhavananda and Prabhavananda and others.

For the convenience of the reader, Swami Prabhavananda's translation of the verses that Swami Turiyananda had omitted has been inserted and every instance is preceded by an asteric mark.

In order to preserve Swami Turiyananda's original meaning of the text, only such changes have been made in punctuation, spelling, syntax, and word choice as are in accord with contemporary modern English usage. It is clear in reading Swami Turiyananda's presentation, that his translation borders on a commentary. Throughout this translation – commentary, there are instances where the Swami's particular word choice demonstrates his capacity to reveal an original interpretation and unique angle to Shankara's scriptural classic. The questions that Swami Turiyananda himself raised in his class, and were subsequently noted down by Ujjvala, have been culled out and utilized as topic headings in the Vivekacudamani in italics.

This edition of the Vivekacudamani gives a glimpse into how Swami Turiyananda transmitted the spiritual tradition of India to the American devotees at Shanti Ashrama at the turn of the century. Shanti Ashrama continues to be a unique place of pilgrimage where devotees gather to meditate and to remember Swami Turiyananda and his contribution to Vedanta in America.






1. Invocation 1
2. Greatness of Abiding in Brahman 1
3. Mean of Knowledge 4
4. Who is competent? 7
5. The Four-fold Sadhana 8
6. Hallmarks of the Guru 13
7. Method of Instruction 18
8. Disciple's Question 21
9. Congratulating the Disciple 22
10. Importance of Self-effort 22
11. Greatness of Self-knowledge 24
12. Need for Self-experience 26
13. Attachment to Body denounced 35
14. Gross Body 37
15. The Ten Indriyas 39
16. The Five Pranas 40
17. Subtle Body 41
18. The Ego 44
19. Nature of Love 45
20. Maya 46
21. Rajo Guna 47
22. Tamo Guna 48
23. Sattva Guna 51
24. Causal Body 52
25. The Non-Self 53
26. The Self 54
27. Super-imposition 59
28. The Tree of Samsara 63
29. Nature of Bondage 64
30. Discrimination between Self and non-self 65
31. The Material Sheath 68
32. The Vital Sheath 73
33. The Mental Sheath 74
34. The Knowledge Sheath 83
35. The Non-attachment of the self 86
36. The Path to Liberation 87
37. The Blissful Sheath 93
38. Nature of the Self 96
39. Everything is Brahman 102
40. Nature of Brahman 107
41. The Mahavakya 109
42. Meditation on Brahman 113
43. Removal of Impressions 122
44. Removal of Super-imposition 127
45. Meaning of "I" 133
46. Denunciation of Egoism 135
47. Denunciation of Inadvertence 145
48. Removal of Reflection 148
49. Method of Abiding in Brahman 153
50. Nature of Substratum 158
51. Samadhi 160
52. Dispassion 170
53. Method of Meditation 173
54. Perceiving 175
55. No Diversity 182
56. Mode of Contemplating the Self 186
57. Ignoring the seen 189
58. Fruit of Self-knowledge 191
59. Hallmark of Jivan-mukta 194
60. Nature of Prarabdha 201
61. Denial of Multiplicity 209
62. Experience of the Self 211
63. Attaining Self-awakening 215
64. Benediction 233
65. The Four-fold Criteria 257
66. In Praise of the Text 258
  Index 261


Sample Pages

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Item Code: IDD940 Author: Trans. By. Swami Turiyananda Cover: Paperback Edition: 2010 Publisher: Sri Ramakrishna Math ISBN: 9788171204052 Language: Sanskrit Text with Transliteration, Translation and Index Size: 7.1" X 4.8" Pages: 286 Other Details: Weight of the Book 205 gms
Price: $14.00
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