Sāṁkhya Karika with Nārāyaṇa Commentaries
Sāṁkhya Karika of Īśvara Kṛṣṇa with commentaries of Śrī Nārāyaṇa Tirtha (1675-1745) called Sānkhya Chandrika.
Śrī Nārāyaṇa Tirtha was born in Andhra Pradesh but in course of time he renounced the family life and went to Varanasi and was a disciple of Śrī Rama Govinda Tirtha and later for the most part of his life he settled in Tamil Nadu. Śrī Nārāyaṇa was well known as a great musician and a master of Carnatic music who has composed many devotional songs and one of his most popular musicals was the Sanskrit opera called Śrī Krishna Leela Tarangini. He was a great propounder of Nama Sankirtana ideology and a staunch Advaitist.
Śrī Nārāyaṇa Tirtha was also a great Sanskrit scholar who has written commentaries on several fundamental Hindu philosophical treatises like the Sānkhya Karika, Yoga Sutra and Sānkhya Tattva Kaumudi.
Sāṁkhya Darśana is a traditional philosophical school of India that assume the existence of two eternal principles – the Nature or Material principle (Prakṛti) and the Spiritual or Soul (Puruṣa). The fundamental treatise Sāṁkhya Kārikā is written in the IV century AD by Īśvara Kṛṣṇa. Sānkhya Karikas were not written just for nothing better to do, but with a certain purpose and motivation in mind – to Liberate living beings from three-fold suffering characteristic to living beings. It is said that all human suffering may be of three kinds: 1. intrinsic 2.extrinsic and 3. supernatural.
Sānkhya philosophy analyses all existence and distinguishes or “enumerates” everything as consisting of 25 principles given below. The Path to Liberation from suffering and pain according to Sānkhya philosophy lies in right awareness of those 25 principles and release of Soul from wrong self-identifications with forms of Nature. When we have a right understanding that a Soul is independent and for itself existing entity and Nature and forms of Nature for itself, the suffering ceases and the Soul reaches Liberation.
|1. Puruṣa (Soul)|
|2. Prakṛti (Nature) = Unmanifested and Manifested|
|A. Evolvent and Evolutes:||B. Evolutes|
|Organs of Perception||Organs of Action||Gross Elements|
5. Rudiment of sound
Kārikā means a memorial verse. Naming his work Sānkhya Kārikā Īśvara Kṛṣṇa has intended to suggest that it is a compendium of Sānkhya philosophy which formulates the essentials of Sānkhya doctrine in a concise aphorisms which would be easy to remember.
Though, due to their concise form it is often difficult for unprepared mind to understand full philosophical meaning and consequences of Sānkhya Kārikās and it is very recommended to read them with commentaries written by great minds and Liberated souls of the past, such as Sānkhya Chandrika of Śrī Nārāyaṇa.