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Adi Shankaracharya:

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Why in news?

Recently, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled a 12-foot statue of Adi Shankar Acharya at Kedarnath (Uttrakhand), where the acharya is believed to have attained samadhi at the age of 32 in the ninth century.

Key points:

About Adi Shankar Acharya:

  • He was born 11th May 788 AD, at Kaladi near Kochi, Kerala.
  • He was a devotee of Shiva.
  • Took Samadhi at the age of 33, at Kedar tirth.
  • Adi Shankara is generally identified as the author of 116 works — among them the celebrated commentaries (bhashyas) on 10 Upanishads,

 The Brahmasutra and the Gita, and poetic works including:

Vivekachudamani,

 Maneesha Panchakam

 Saundaryalahiri.

  • Adi Shankara composed texts like Shankarasmrithi, which seeks to establish the social supremacy of Nambuthiri Brahmins.
  • He Propounded the Doctrine of Advaita (Monism)
  • He was influenced by Mahayana Buddhism and hence he came to be called as crypto Bhuddist.

Advaita:

  • Dvaita means duality, and Advaita means nonduality. In simple terms, Advaita means absence of the duality between subject and object. In our wakeful consciousness we experience duality, but in deep sleep only nonduality.
  • Advaita School believes that Brahman is the one and only reality and everything else is a mere appearance, projection, formation or illusion.
  • The school also believes that Atman, the individual self, has no separate existence of its own.

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