Advaita Vedanta is one of the most important and widely studied schools of thought in Hindu religion and the Vivekacudamani is one of the most important texts in the Advaita tradition and the most popular philosophical work ascribed to the great Indian philosopher, Sankara. Sankara (c.650-700) is considered to be a giant among giants and probably the most venerated philosopher in India's long history. The Vivekacudamani is in the form of a dialogue between a preceptor (guru) and a pupil (sisya) expounding the quintessence of Advaita in which the pupil humbly approaches the preceptor and, having served the teacher selflessly, implores to be rescued from worldly existence (samsara). The guru promises to teach the way to liberation (moksa) which culminates in the ecstatic experience of one's own Self. This book presents an accessible translation of the entire text and also includes Upanisadic cross-referencing to most of its 580 verses, extensive notes, a lengthy Introduction, list of variant readings, an extensive bibliography, and an index to the verses. All those interested in Indian religion and philosophy, Hindu studies, or Sanskrit, will find this readable English translation of an Indian philosophical classic invaluable.
Table of Contents
Contents: Preface; An introduction to the life and thought of sankara: Approaches to the study of Sankara; Determining the dates of Sankara; The life of Sankara; The works of Sankara; The Vivekacudamani; The philosophy of Sankara; What is Advaita Vedanta?; The legacy of Sankara; The crown jewel of discrimination: (translation and notes); Variant readings; Bibliography; Indexes.
John Grimes is a professor at Kodaikanal International School, Kodaikanal, South India.
A very welcome addition to the available Vivekacudamani translations: earlier translations have none of the flow and fluidity of expression presented here. John Grimes' style is very engaging and difficult Advaitic concepts are expressed with ease and in a diction easy to follow. Students of HIndu religious and philosophical thought and those engaged in comparative religious and philosophical problems will find great interest in this work. T.S.Rukmani, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada A very good, comprehensive overview of Sankara and his philosophy. This excellent summary and survey will be very useful in classes studying Sankara, Sanskrti, Vedanta, or Indian philosophy more generally. Grimes makes the text come alive and make sense in the 21st century. Penetrating and inviting. Boyd H.Wilson, Hope College, Michigan, USA '... this is an important contribution to scholarship about Samkara and a reliable translation that rightly surpasses previous translations of this important text...' Hindu Studies