A THOUSAND TEACHINGS THE UPADESASAHASRI OF SANKARA PDF

With this translation and an extensive introduction to Sankara's life and thought, he makes this classic of Indian philosophy accessible to a wider readership. This is the best introduction to Vedanta and to Sankara's philosophy. The Upadesaasahasri, or A Thousand Teachings consists of a metrical part and a prose part. In the metrical part, Sankara discusses the basic philosophical problems of non-dualism, at the same time refuting the teachings of other philosophical schools. In the prose part, he explains how to teach the way to self realization--to enlightenment. Sankara and the great Abhinavagupta are generally regarded as the two greatest thinkers in the long history of Indian philosophy.

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There are a number of other books on non-duality itself, which over the centuries have been attributed to Shankara, but which many scholars now believe were probably written by followers. The only text that is not a commentary on something else, and which most authorities agree was definitely written by Shri Shankara himself, is this text, known as The Thousand Teachings, or Upadesasahasri in Sanskrit.

Even this text was probably not put into its current arrangement by Shankara. It consists of a prose part, and a longer metrical section, which can be read separately. It establishes the non-dual view that our difficulties are caused by our ignorance of our own true Self, and that the means to liberation or realization, that is, to lasting happiness and true fulfilment, is knowledge of our true Self. The only effective antidote to ignorance of Self is knowledge of Self. The true nature of the Self, which is the reality in all, is revealed, according to Shankara, in the Upanishads, although the help and guidance of a qualified teacher is needed to fully understand and to attain direct realization.

Shankara analyses the difference between Self and not-Self, between absolute Reality and what is not absolutely Real, in the way that has become the foundation of the non-dual teachings ever since. He draws out the implications of this understanding in detail, leading the mind through its own efforts to the point where reliance on any limited form or process must cease. It is helpful on the path to grasp the essential difference between Self and not-self, between Absolute reality and what is not absolutely real, in the way established by Shankara, which is rationally flawless and which if followed carefully prevents us from getting lost in distractions.

The value of all non-dual teachings can be judged by how completely they remain consistent with Shankara on the essential points. This book will be of interest to academic students of non-dual philosophy. For some sincere enquirers who are practicing meditation and the related disciplines, it may be a helpful book to study carefully to gain a deeper understanding of the non-dual philosophy.

Cart Log In. Thousand Teachings of Shankara. By A J Alston translator. See in the Bookstore.

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A Thousand Teachings: The Upadesasahasri of Sankara

Sankara has usually been regarded as the greatest philosopher of India since P. Deussen praised his philosophy and compared it with those of Parmenides and Kant. It has also been pointed out that, like Meister Eckhart, he was not so much a philosopher as a theologian. Sankara was indeed a metaphysician or theologian, but, like Gotama Buddha and other great religious teachers, he was primarily concerned with the salvation of people suffering in transmigratory existence here in this present world and not with the establishment of a complete system of philosophy or theology.

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There are a number of other books on non-duality itself, which over the centuries have been attributed to Shankara, but which many scholars now believe were probably written by followers. The only text that is not a commentary on something else, and which most authorities agree was definitely written by Shri Shankara himself, is this text, known as The Thousand Teachings, or Upadesasahasri in Sanskrit. Even this text was probably not put into its current arrangement by Shankara. It consists of a prose part, and a longer metrical section, which can be read separately. It establishes the non-dual view that our difficulties are caused by our ignorance of our own true Self, and that the means to liberation or realization, that is, to lasting happiness and true fulfilment, is knowledge of our true Self. The only effective antidote to ignorance of Self is knowledge of Self.

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Upadesasahasri is divided into two parts — one is in metric verse and another is in prose. There are nineteen chapters prakarana in the verse or Metrical Part Padyabandha. The manuscript of this work indicates that the two parts prose and verse were regarded as independent works and studied or commented upon separately. Manuscript also suggests the possibility that any single chapter could be studied differently — apart from the rest.

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