जपो जल्पः शिल्पं सकलमपि मुद्राविरचना
गतिः प्रादक्षिण्य-क्रमण-मशनाद्या हुति-विधिः ।
प्रणामः संवेशः सुखमखिल-मात्मार्पण-दृशा
सपर्या पर्याय-स्तव भवतु यन्मे विलसितम्
japo jalpah silpam sakalam apimudraviracana
gatih pradaksinya kramanam asanadyahutivihih
pranamas samvesas sukham akhilam atmarpanadrsa
saparya paryayas tava bhavatu yanme vilasitam
Incantations, mutterings, ritual acts, hand-gestures, gait,
Circumambulation, food-offerings, inclination, adoration by lying down;
All such enjoyments, as coming within the scope of self-surrender
And thus synonymous with worship of you: let such be what from me might shine forth.
Worship is a form of self-surrender. Such self-surrender yields joy to the person thus surrendering. Thousands of temples in this world, especially those based on ritualistic idolatry in South India, have various forms of ritualistic activities which could all be thought of as belonging to one ensemble of ritualistic actions, in the same way as Wittgenstein would bring all aspects of logical discourse together under one reference, and allude to them as "word games". Sankara wants to find a synonym which will all-inclusively cover the whole range of possible ritualistic actions that an elaborately trained Tantric priest might employ before an idol within the sanctum of a temple, under the inclusive reference of a saparyaparyaya ("synonymous with worship of you").
The synonym and antonym could then be cancelled ontologically into the joy of self-surrender, which would then be an absolute value. What shines forth from the supplicant is to be cancelled ontologically against the value-significance emanating from the idolatrous presence within the temple. When subjected to this double process, we get a reversible equation or reaction which is to be imagined as taking place between the idol and the worshipper prostrating before the idol.
The items that express self-surrender in one form or another could be as varied as the outward forms of expression of devotion. But if we should put a circle around all of them, amounting to the same joy of self-surrender vis-à-vis the Non-Self value of the idol itself - treating the former as an inclusive ensemble representing an experience of joy in the act of worship - a fully cancellable situation results.
The Self is equated with the Non-Self and vice-versa. Sankara refuses to take any notice of the individual gestures, mudras or attitudes, however varied they might be. He, as an Advaitin, is not interested in Tantrism for its own sake. He has his own correct methodology, by which he would find the synonymous counterparts capable of reduction logically, semantically or even mathematically, into terms that could cancel out into the pure value-notion represented by the Absolute. In the light of such a cancellation it is easy to see that the authorship by Sankara of a Tantric text - which has been treated as questionable even by such scholars as Woodroffe and Brown, not to mention later Tantric commentators of this text - does not present any problems to us at all. Sankara is not interested in Tantrism at the expense of Advaita. On the contrary, Tantrism is revalued and restated, as is so clearly evident in this verse, to serve the purpose and heighten the doctrine of pure Advaita Vedanta, for which Sankara has always taken a consistently uncompromising stand.
It is because many scholars, both Indian and Western, have failed to see how Sankara's proto-linguistic, non-verbose approach presented here is fully compatible with the more verbose or metalinguistic version of Vedanta found in his Bhasyas (great commentaries), that the whole suspicion about his authorship of these verses has arisen. While all the evidence taken together tends to suggest Sankara as the only possible author, punditry and pedantry at present have conspired to call into question such clear indications as presented in this verse because of their own inability to recognize the same doctrines as those of the Bhasyas, presented here in a proto-linguistic form. The difference between these two forms of expression is ignored by the large majority of pundits even to this day. The available editions of the "Saundarya Lahari" do not succeed even in giving us a bare gist of the sense of these verses, whether for genuine appreciation or at least in the name of academic or artistic dilettantism.
We have said that, as far as the authorship of Sankara is concerned, the allusion to dravida sishu (Dravidian child) in Verse 75, leaves no room for vain speculation, except when pseudo-orthodoxy enters into the picture to complicate matters beyond simple recognition. In our comments we have tried to take a simpler view without getting lost in the great forest of words, which Sankara himself takes care to warn us against in his "Vivekacudamani" (Verse 60).
When it is stated in Verse 8 that the gods become the legs of the couch of the Devi, there is evidently a challenge staring us in the face. The pictorial representations by Mogul or Rajput schools of painting, printed in the edition by Prof. Norman Brown of Harvard, do recognize that the transformation of the gods into the legs of a cot is meant seriously by Sankara, but to this day no justification of such a transformation has been suggested, at least to the knowledge of the present writer. The latter believes that only through a proto-linguistic structural approach could such a transformation be barely understood. In Verse 27 we can see how Sankara takes care to reduce Tantrism to an equation between two aspects of the Self, exactly as in the case of the mahavakyas (great dicta), which together constitute the keystone of the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta. The purpose of Sankara in this verse is patently clear, and also puts beyond all dispute the question of his authorship, which remains to this day so disputed in the world of punditry and pedantry. This is too precious and valuable a work to be lost to the disrespect of pundits and scholars.

(Vivekacudamani, Verse 60: "A net of words is a great forest where the fancy wanders; therefore the reality of the Self is to be strenuously learned from the knower of that reality." ED)






Physical and metaphysical adoration are cancelled when treated as one-one ensembles.


Japo jalpah - mutterings and incantations
Silpam sakalam api - ritual acts
Mudra viracana - hand gestures
Gatih - gait
Pradakshinya kramanam asana adyahuti vidhih - circumambulation, burnt ritualistic food offerings
Pranamaha samveshaha - inclinations, prostration
Sukham akhilam - all such preferences
Atma arpana drsha - treated as coming within the scope of self-surrender
Saparya paryayaha tava bhavatu - let them be synonymous with worship for You
Yanme vilasitam - what from me might shine forth.
Circumambulation (from Latin circum around + ambulātus to walk) is the act of moving around a sacred object or idol.




All of the acts of Puja (ritualistic worship) are here enumerated.

Sankara says: "do not treat these as separate items, but as all coming from the Self as a form of self-surrender; let this Puja be brought under the aegis of "Self-Puja"; the whole of this shining thing, let it be related to the Numerator Non-Self".

This is an equation of Self and Non-Self.
"Let this all be one master-worship".





Whatever you do as Karma (action) is to be put together and seen as worship of the Devi.

(The ritualism of the tradition of the Vedas is classified traditionally under Karma Kanda - the domain of action - as opposed to Jnana Kanda - the domain of wisdom, which is Vedanta. ED)

It is an equation between Self and Non-Self.

In the usual temple there are various acts, signs, pujas etc.
Take all of these and treat them as a synonymous of worship. The priest can do as he likes - they have no meaning in themselves.
They must be cancelled with their own Numerator.


Put a circle around all the possible rituals of temple worship and equate that totality with its Numerator.

There are various aspects of ritual; they are to be considered as all being the same.
(The Guru speaks about the pundits, they will not see properly because of their vested interest in ritualism.)

There are here listed six or seven actions which a priest will do in an orthodox Devi temple; bells, flowers, camphor etc. are involved.
Treat all of this, circled in its totality, as a Denominator aspect of the noumenal - it means adoration of the Devi.

Do not tell the priest that he is wrong, tell him that you understand it all:
"Of course I believe it all - it is a protolanguage"


(In the terminology of Nataraja Guru, the term "protolanguage" is used differently from its usual definition in linguistics: the structural methodology used throughout his works is protolanguage. The Cartesian co-ordinates are protolinguistic in essence; so also are the longitudes and latitudes of maps. Symbols are protolinguistic; signs are metalinguistic. Alphabets belong to metalanguage and geometrical elements such as angles, points, lines or concentric circles can be used protolinguistically. ED)

Treat it as one bundle of adoration - mark it down in your account book as adoration of the Devi.

The conventional man will be bothered about the details of the ritual and say "Oh, he left out the fifth motion in the ritual".
- never mind, it just means adoration of the Devi.

All intelligent people can underline this and accept it.


Action is a Denominator; cancel it out with the light of intelligence which is the Numerator aspect of the Absolute.


Another version:

- Incantations, mutterings
- Gesture (acts) and all
- Making of finger signals
- Ambulation (movement)
- Clockwise circumambulation
- Obligatory rituals such as (what has to do with) eating.
(By way of fire-sacrifice offering.)
- Prostrations and lying prone (six (?) limbs offered to the Devi by lying prostrate.)
- Joy, everything (which is experienced in worship)
- Viewed in the context of self-surrender (to the Devi or Non-Self)
- As synonymous to worship ( they have only linguistic status,
and are synonymous to worship)
- To You let this become ("You" means all wise readers)
- That which manifests from me (by way of my behaviour or attitude)

Let all wise men understand this puja, not ridicule the man who
does it: he is trying to adore something.


This is the highest point to which culture can attain.
Let it have this meaning and no other, to all wise men.
"That which by itself has shone from me - take it as one total monomark, cancelling out with the Numerator factor."
This all in adoration of the Absolute.


Culture cannot go any farther than in this verse.
When examined critically, in the light of Philosophy, this verse still stands.

The Devi is saying: "That which has emanated as light out of me - this is the Denominator".
The understanding is the Numerator.

These have been beautifully brought together.
This is also an equation between the Self and the Non-Self. "This dry world of convention is a dead world of Pharisees! Who wants that?"

(This with regard to pundits who interpret these verses conventionally. "I hate that" - the Guru.)


"Beware of 1) Those who talk too much. 2) Those who put religious marks all over their bodies. 3) Women who peek out of their saris." - Ramakrishna.


Not that he has done this act consciously:
"When I stand in worship of the Absolute, treat my actions as the only language I am capable of using to adore the Absolute".

This verse treats worship as integration of the Self with the Non-Self.
Sankara treats the whole of ritual, puts a circle around it and treats it as the Non-Self of the Devi; as Her counterpart.



The intention is to establish a link or equation between the Self and the Non-Self - the aim of all prayer.
The equation is reversible and cancellable, leaving only the Absolute.
A man does ritual worship of many kinds, with many actions
- it is all to establish the link between the Self and the Non-Self.



Another version:

- Incantations, mutterings
- Acts of worship and all
- Hand gestures
- Circumambulant ways
- Such as eating, all obligatory ritualistic offering
- Salutation
- Lying down
- Pleasurable experiences
- All
- Under the aspect of self-surrender
- As the equivalent of the worship of You
- Let it be
- Whatsoever emanates from me (shines forth from me)


I am an Advaitic philosopher and I treat this list of actions as a whole, as a synonym for self-surrender.


The Devi says: "Put a circle around what emanates, then equate that with me";
An equation and a cancellation are involved here.

What I do and what I am are dialectical counterparts to be cancelled out.
Numerator should become Denominator and vice-versa.
They are interchangeable.



Subject and object are a reversible equation and the object is an ensemble.
("In the universe there is Krishna, in Krishna there is the universe", as the Gita states.)
Also a comparison is made between the micro- and macrocosm.
It resembles Planck's quantum mechanics, also implosion and explosion, entropy and negentropy.
Show the logarithmic relationship between the image in the microscope and in the telescope.
c.f. conversation with Maitreyi and the Hermetic secret.
(Maitreyi was a female Vedic philosopher from ancient India. She was the second wife of famous sage and philosopher, Yajnavalkya, the first being Katyaayanee. Maitreyi was well-versed in Vedas and associated scriptures and was called brahmavadini or "an expounder of the Veda" by people of her time. About ten hymns in Rig Veda are accredited to Maitreyi. ED)

(Above are some illustrations of Hermetic mysteries. We must confess that the reference is not clear to us. ED)
A conversation between father and son: "I love my father, I love my son."
There is between them a love with a capital L.
Cause and effect become the same.


VERSES 26, 27 and 28 are to be taken together.

VERSE 26: Surviving evil by double assertion. He survives without double negation.

VERSE 27: the equation of Self with Non-Self. This is a neutral position or matrix - use the crystal here, to show equalization.

VERSE 28:  double negation - "Not, not" is more affirmative than a mere "Yes".

Begin with Verse 27 as in notes on previous page, then go to Verse 28

Double Negation - show a man in a well kicking his feet in the water and saving himself.
Let it be Eros: show the milk ocean churning and the drinking of poison.


These are sets or ensembles - see Cantor.
There is one-one correspondence.

Physical and metaphysical adoration are cancelled out, when treated as one-one sets.
There is one-one correspondence between acts of worship and cybernetic language.
Actions concentrate the mind and establish bipolarity between subject and object - achieving homeostasis.


Waving lights is a figure-eight = cancellation.
"From me..", "with you.." - cancellation of the Self with the
Ritual is intentionality