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Beyond Compare

St. Francis de Sales and Sri Vedanta Desika on Loving Surrender to God

Publication Year: 2008

Beyond Compare is a remarkable work that offers a commentary on spiritual learning for the twenty-first century rooted in two classic texts from the Hindu and Christian traditions: the Essence of the Three Auspicious Mysteries by Sri Vedanta Desika and Tr

Published by: Georgetown University Press


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Title Page, Copyright Page

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pp. xi-xiii

This book seeks to be a commentary on two works rooted in different traditions: the Essence of the Three Auspicious Mysteries by Śrī Vedānta Deśika and the Treatise on the Love of God by St. Francis de Sales. Several of the personal things that I might say in a preface are in chapter 1, specifically with respect to this book’s genesis in my earlier writing, in questions...

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1. Two Spiritual Classics and the Possibilities They Present

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pp. 1-31

Perhaps the ideal reader can be described as someone who reads like a prapanna—like someone who does prapatti, who surrenders completely, somewhat desperately, having run out of strategies and plans: surrendering to the text and its meaning after attempting and abandoning every skillful strategy by which...

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2. Thinking, Writing, Reading: Finding a Path to Loving Surrender

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pp. 32-82

The book which de Sales composed about divine love is a masterpiece admired by those capable of judging it; but it is certain that in order to know its value, one must necessarily be very devout and very learned; these are two qualities rare enough when separate, and still more rare when conjoined...

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3. Awakening: Reading and Learning on the Way to God

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pp. 83-141

Such is the devout soul in meditation. She passes from mystery to mystery, not at random, or only to solace herself in viewing the admirable beauty of those divine objects, but deliberately and of set purpose, to find out motives of love or of some heavenly affection; and having found them she draws them to her, she...

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4. Loving Surrender: Insight, Drama, and Ecstasy

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pp. 142-188

I have been wandering about this world from time without beginning, doing what does not please You, my God. From this day forward, I must do what pleases You, and I must cease what displeases You. But my hands are empty, I cannot attain You, my God; I see that You alone are the way. You must be my way! Hereafter, in the...

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5. As We Become Ourselves: On the Ethics of Loving Surrender and of Persistence in Reading

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pp. 189-212

One of the qualifications for taking refuge is grief before taking refuge. If a person has no grief before taking refuge, he will be lacking a necessary qualification for performing it since, by the principle “No cause, no effect,” his means will be ineffective. Similarly, when he reflects upon himself after taking refuge, if...


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pp. 213-247


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pp. 249-253


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pp. 255-271

E-ISBN-13: 9781589016507
E-ISBN-10: 1589016505
Print-ISBN-13: 9781589012110
Print-ISBN-10: 1589012119

Page Count: 288
Publication Year: 2008

OCLC Number: 565547646
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Beyond Compare

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Subject Headings

  • Veṅkaṭanātha, 1268-1369. Rahasyatrayasāra.
  • Śrī Vaishṇava (Sect) -- Relations -- Catholic Church.
  • Francis, de Sales, Saint, 1567-1622. Traité de l'amour de Dieu.
  • Spiritual life -- Comparative studies.
  • Viśiṣṭādvaita.
  • Love -- Religious aspects.
  • God (Christianity) -- Worship and love.
  • Catholic Church -- Relations -- Śrī Vaishṇava (Sect).
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