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Two friends: Death and wisdom

This documentary tells the story about life of Adi Shankaracharya – the founder of the non-duality (Advaita Vedanta)

Shiva Guru, Shankara’s father, asks him to treat Mrithyu [death] as a friend. Mruthyu approaches Shankara as a boy and both become friends. At the time of Shankara’s initiation, he meets another boy, Pragyana [wisdom] and makes him his other friend. These two friends, “Pragyana Sharma” and “Mrithyu” grow with Shankara and stay with him.

Whenever the friends are in action, they are associated with the shlokas “…. vishvam bhuta-bhavya-bhavat prabhum” [He who has inner vision is the Lord of the past, present, future] for Pragyana Sharama. Mrithyu is associated with “akasas-patitam-toyam …” [every drop of water from the sky merges with the sea]. The movements of the friends are very carefully orchestrated ones.

Shankara’s friend Pragyana Sharma: Pragyana moves away from Shankara when he says to the chandala in Kashi, just like others, anmayada [move away]. When Shankara realizes the truth, Pragyana comes back to him again. The encounter of Pragyana with Mandana Mishra’s parrot, is enlightening. So is his deserting of Shankara’s disciples when they become envious of Sureshwara.

Shankara’s friend Mrithyu: Shankara first meets Mrithyu at the time of death of his father Siva Guru. Mruthyu was already there when Shankara reaches home from Sringeri to meet his mother. Many times, Mrithyu is angry at Shankara, as he (Shankara) laughs at Mrithyu. When Shankara is ill, Shankara laughs again, observing the paradox of Mrithyu taking care of his body, when actually he (Mrithyu) should be destroying it.

Final embrace of Shankara and his friends: In the Himalayas, Shankara has a debate with his friend Wisdom.When they embrace, Wisdom merges into Shankara. Death who was angry because, Shankara always laughs at him is also asked by Shankara to embrace him. He does after Shankara’s persuation “in spite of the fact that I laugh at you, you still have been with me. So you are my friend. So embrace me.” He embraces Shankara and that is the last when we see of (mortal) Shankara.


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