'Temple Construction Incomplete, Event Against Shastras': All 4 Shankaracharyas To Skip Ram Temple Consecration Ceremony On Jan 22?

'Temple Construction Incomplete, Event Against Shastras': All 4 Shankaracharyas To Skip Ram Temple Consecration Ceremony On Jan 22?

In the video, Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati, the 46th Shankaracharya of the Jyotir Mutt, emphasised that the choice made by the four shankaracharyas should not be interpreted as being "anti-Modi."

Tejas JoshiUpdated: Thursday, January 11, 2024, 06:02 PM IST
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Days after the decision of the pontiff of Puri's Govardhan Mutt to abstain from participating in the consecration ceremony of the idol at Ayodhya's Ram temple on January 22, the counterpart from Uttarakhand's Jyotir Mutt, Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati, has declared that none of the four prominent shankarcharyas, or religious leaders, will be present at the event.

Not 'anti-Modi' but can't participate in 'anti-shastras' ceremony': Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati

This stems from the fact that the ceremony is taking place in violation of the "shastras," sacred Hindu scriptures, particularly given the incomplete status of the temple construction. The statement was conveyed in a video shared on his official X handle, formerly known as Twitter, on Tuesday.

In the video, Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati, the 46th Shankaracharya of the Jyotir Mutt, emphasised that the choice made by the four shankaracharyas should not be interpreted as being "anti-Modi." Instead, the decision was made to align with the principles of the sacred scriptures (shastras) rather than adopting an "anti-shastras" stance.

"What is the reason for not going? Not because of any aversion or hatred, but because it’s shankaracharyas’ duty to follow shastra-vidhi (rituals of the shastras) and ensure that they are followed. And here, shastra-vidhi is being ignored. The biggest problem is that the pran pratishtha (consecration) is being done when the temple is still incomplete. “And if we say this, we are called ‘anti-Modi’. What is anti-Modi here?" he said.

Shankaracharya of Govardhana Peeth has already declined invitation

Few days back, Swami Nischalananda Saraswati, the Shankaracharya of Govardhana Peeth in Puri -- declared his intent to abstain from the Prana Prathishta (installation) function.

Expressing dissatisfaction with the proceedings, the prominent Hindu seer voiced his concerns, stating that he is averse to the involvement of political figures in the sacred event. The Shankaracharya firmly believes that PM Modi should not partake in the physical installation of the Ram idol. In his view, the responsibility of consecrating the idol lies with priests and sadhus, not politicians. "Why are so many politicians expected to be present?" he questioned, justifying his decision to abstain from the ceremony.

2 Shankaracharyas debunk fake news, say no opposition to temple consecration

Meanwhile, two of the Shankaracharyas of Dwarka & Sringeri mutt have called the reports of them opposing the consecration ceremony to be held in Ayodhya on January 22 as 'fake'.

In separate statements released on Thursday, the two Shankaracharyas said that they have neither made any comments in relation to the Ram Temple, nor have they opposed the January 22 ceremony. They instead welcomed the event and called it a "culmination of 500 years of struggle".

However, they did not confirm if they would be attending the January 22 event.

Shankaracharya, their mutts and Advait Vedanta

The title "Shankaracharya" refers to the head or pontiff of a mutt or matha (monastic organisation) established by Adi Shankaracharya, a renowned philosopher and theologian in Hinduism. Adi Shankaracharya, who lived in the 8th century, is credited with reviving and consolidating the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta, a prominent school of thought in Hindu philosophy.

The four principal Shankaracharya mathas (mutts) in India are associated with the cardinal directions:

Govardhan Mutt (Puri, Odisha): This matha is in the eastern part of India.

Sharada Peetham (Dwarka, Gujarat): Located in the western part of India.

Jyotir Mutt (Badrikashrama, Uttarakhand): Situated in the northern part of India.

Sringeri Sharada Peetham (Sringeri, Karnataka): Located in the southern part of India.

Each Shankaracharya is the spiritual leader of one of these mathas. They play a crucial role in preserving and promoting Advaita Vedanta, which is a non-dualistic school of Vedanta philosophy. Advaita Vedanta teaches that the ultimate reality (Brahman) is devoid of attributes and distinctions and that the individual soul (Atman) is identical to Brahman.

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