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Freedom through Inner Renunciation
Sankara's Philosophy in a New Light
Freedom through Inner Renunciation
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Roger Marcaurelle - Author
SUNY Series, McGill Studies in the History of Religions, A Series Devoted to International Scholarship
Price: $53.50 
Hardcover - 269 pages
Release Date: November 1999
ISBN10: 0-7914-4361-2
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-4361-3

Quantity:  
Price: $31.95 
Paperback - 269 pages
Release Date: November 1999
ISBN10: 0-7914-4362-0
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-4362-0

Quantity:  

Summary

This first full-length study of renunication in Sankara's Advaita Vedanta shows that Sankara's position has been misinterpreted by both traditional and modern commentators and brings his actual position to light.

"This is an outstanding piece of scholarship. The author shows a deep understanding of Sankara's thought." -- John M. Koller, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

This book is the first full-length study of renunciation in Sankara's Advaita Vedanta.It shows that a major misinterpretation occurred concerning Sankara's position on renunciation early within his own tradition, and has persisted amongst modern Indologists. Most interpreters of Sankara understand that he saw the monastic way of living as a sine qua non for full knowledge of the Self and spiritual freedom. But this study brings Sankara's real position to light and shows that, for him, inner renunciation of ego and doership was the only indispensable form of renunciation. Monasticism was quite useful, but not mandatory. Using Sankara's own hermeneutical principles as well as the modern philological approach, Marcaurelle shows the basic processes of interpretation and misinterpretation that can shape fundamental aspects of a spiritual tradition.

Included with the work is a discussion of particular interest given the world-wide revival of Eastern forms of meditation: a clarification of Sankara's view of the value of meditation.

“…Marcaurelle’s…treatment of the material is exhaustive, extending over the entire corpus of Sankara’s authentic writings; his analyses of individual passages are meticulous and balanced … [The study’s] focus … accounts for a satisfying density and rigor of argumentation.” — Journal of the American Oriental Society

"The most remarkable thing about the book is the author's thorough command of Advaita literature coupled with a passionate, keen, and persistent concentration on his thesis. In this he emulates Sankaracarya, the greatest of all Advaitins. The intellectual importance of the book lies in the combination of scholarly expertise and persistence that the author brings to his task." -- Karl H. Potter, University of Washington

Roger Marcaurelle is Lecturer, Department of Religious Studies, Universite du Quebec a Montreal.


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Table of Contents

Preface

Acknowledgements

Abbreviations of Works by Sankara

Part One: The Issue and the Methodology

1. Sankara and Renunciation: the Controversy

2. The Basic Types of Renunciation In Advaita Vedanta

3. Five Reference Points for Proper Interpretation

4. Two Unfounded Explanations

Part Two: Sankara and Renunciation

5. The Householder's Path toward Liberation

6. The Main Opposition between Steadfastness in Action and Steadfastness in Self-Knowledge

7. The Yoga of Action and the Means of Self-Knowledge

8. Self-Knowledge and Physical Renunciation

Part Three: Renunciation in Post-Sankara Advaita Vedanta and Hinduism

9. Post-Sankara Advaita Vedanta and Renunciation

10. Sankara and the Value of Renunciation in Hinduism

Notes

Bibliography

Index



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