In the Padma Purana Lord Siva says to his wife Durga, mayavadam asac-chastram pracchanam bauddham ucyate / mayaiva vihitam devi kalau brahmana-murtina. “My dear devi, in the age of Kali, I take the form of a brahmana and explain the Vedas through false scriptures in an athiestic way, similar to Buddhist philosophy.” In the name of Vedic principles, people were unnecessarily performing animal sacrifice for the pleasure of the tongue. Buddha descended and rejected the Vedas, urging people to follow Him instead. In this way Krsna in the form of Buddha stopped the unnecessary slaughter of animals. However, since no one was now following the Vedas, Siva took the form of Sankaracarya descended and preached “Follow the Vedas, but the Vedas say brahma satyam jagan mithya.” Sankaracarya was born in the year 608 of the Sakabda Era in the month of Vaisakha, on the third day of the waxing moon, in a place in South India known as Kaladi. His father’s nmame was Sivaguru, and he lost his father at an early age. When Sankaracarya was only eight years old, he completely his study of all scriptures and took sannyasa from Govinda, who was residing on the banks of the Narmada. Before he could take sannyasa, he was having difficulty because his parents would not allow it due to his tender age. He went to the deity of Krsna and prayed, “Please let me take sannyasa.” At certain important points, Sankara actually prayed to Krsna, as he was actually a devotee. Because Lord Siva was the greates Vaisnava, he was lamenting at every moment that he had to teach this Mayavadi philosophy. After accepting sannyasa, Sankaracarya stayed with his spiritual master for some days. He then took his permission to go to Varanasi and from there went to badarikasrama where he stayed until his twelfth year. While there, he wrote a commentary on Brahma-sutra, as well as ten Upanisads and Bhagavad-gita. He also wrote Sanat-sujatiya and Nrsimha-tapini. Amnong his many disciples, his four chief disciples are Padmapada, Suresvara, Hastamalaka and Trotaka. After departin from Varanasi, Sankaracarya went to Prayaga, where he met a great learned scholar called Kumarila Bhatta. Sankaracarya wanted to discuss the authority of the scriptures, but Kumarila Bhatta, being on his deathbed, sent him to his disciple Mandana, in the city of Mahismati. It was there that Sankaracarya defeated Mandana Misra in a discussion of the sastras. This person was the leader of all the karma-khandis in India at that time. This is about 600 years after Christ in India. So Sankara was preaching in India, defeating all other philosophers of his time. Predominant in India at the time were the karma-khandis and the buddhists also. So he was meeting them in debate, and defeating all of them. So he met the leader of the karma-khandis, Mandana Misra, and Sankara was always displaying his mystic powers. Mandana had a wife named Sarasvati, or Ubhaya-bharati, who served as a mediator between Sankaracarya and her husband. She was said to possess the intelligence of goddess Sarasvati, she was a very wise woman. After many days of debate, the judge decided that Sankara had won the debate, has defeated my husband. So Sankara was about to leave, when the wife said, “But you know, the wife is the better. You’ve defeated him, but you haven’t defeated me yet. So now I want to talk about the arts of love, the arts of sexual love.” So then Sankara said, “I’m a brahmacari, I don’t know anything about that.” And she said, “Well if you cannot discuss with me on this point, you will have been considered to be beaten by me, and all your great fame will be diminished.” So he said, “All right, you give me one month, and then we’ll talk.” “Very good,” the woman said. So then he went with his followers to a lonely place, and he went into meditation, and he left his body. So he was travelling around in his astral body when he saw one palace, so he entered that palace and discovered one king who was on his death bed. The king was leaving his body, and just when he left his body Sankara entered the body. So the people who were standing around were first lamenting, “O the king is dead,” but then the king began to stir. “Oh the king is alive!” So for one month Sankara stayed within this king’s body, and of course in those ancient times kings had many wives, and also many concubines or girlfriends whom they stayed with. So in that one month’s time, he learnt all about the sensual arts, and there is an interesting adventure. The enemies of Sankaracarya, (he had many enemies because he was such a great debater) somehow understood, because he had disappeared, and they had been wondering “Where has he gone, we have not seen him.” Somehow they could understand what he had done, just by logic. “Search everywhere,” they concluded, “because his body must be lying somewhere in trance, and when we find that body we’ll burn it, and he’ll be finished, because he won’t have any body to come back to.” So they wanted to make him a ghost by taking away his gross body. He was in the midst of his palace, and his enemies were searching, and they were coming near the place where his body was lying in trance. Some of his disciples also saw his enemies coming, so one of them ran to the palace. So the king was on his throne, talking to the ministers, and this disciple of Sankaracarya’s came running into the palace. “Master, Master! They are coming to burn your body!” Everyone saw the king just drop dead to the ground. “What is this?” And then Sankara entered his own body again. After attaining this experience, he wanted to discuss erotic principles with Ubhaya-bharati, but without hearing his discussion, she blessed him and assured the continuous existence of the Srngeri-matha. She then took leave of material life. Afterwards, Mandana Misra took the order of sannyasa from
Sankaracarya and became known as Suresvara. snake sheltering frog
When his mother was leaving her body, he came to see her, as that was the condition on which he took sannyasa. When his mother was leaving her body, he had to come back and perform the funeral. So when she waas dying he received news and returned, and she asked him, “So now I am leaving my body. Please tell me what I should do now to perfect my life.” First of all he began to preach his mayavadi darshan, impersonal philosophy. And she said, “I don’t understand what you’re talking about. Give me something that will actually be of benefit to me.” So Sankaracarya then said, “Worship Krsna.” So she did, and she went back to Godhead. Sankaracarya defeated many scholars throughout India and converted them to his Mayavada philosophy. He left the material body at the age of thirty-three.
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