buddha and his teachings
vpcnk at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Aug 17 18:02:00 CDT 1998
Isn't there any integrity left at all?
Everyone is quite aware what Shankara's role in rejuvenating Sanatana
Dharma was. But it definitely wasn't quite the same case with Gaudapada.
He was the first expounder of Advaita Vedanta - period. But any one who
has read his karika on the Mandukya Upanishad and also Madhyamaka works
of Nagarjuna or Chandrakirti and the Yogacara works of Asanga and
Vasubandhu, will be able to say where Gaudapada draws his inspiration
from. When one takes the trouble of tracing the chronological
development of Indian thought with an unprejudiced mind, it'll be pretty
obvious. History shows us that quite a few of the astika philosophers
took to Buddhism. Some of them stuck to it, but others came back into
the Vedic fold, enhancing it with their newfound knowledge. And if one
can accept Kumarilla as one who came back to the Vedic fold, why not
Gaudapada? Oops, I forgot - because Shankara said so!
And with some two bit knowledge about Buddhism let's not make absurd
statements about the Compassionate One's teachings or his followers,
whatever Kumarilla might have said. Kumarilla also states that the
Bouddha schools are to be considered as authoritative sources for
knowledge - so is this acceptable? And the great Advaitin Sri Harsha
himself advocates the use of Madhyamaka logic to depose of opponents!
Since this list deals with discussing Advaita Vedanta, even as taught by
Shankara, we should understand that there are two aspects to it : 1.
Advaita as a practice and 2. Advaita as a philosophy. With the latter
I'm unable to understand as to how discussions on Bouddha philosophy can
be avoided? Unless ofcourse we ignore the entire Bouddha darshana and
assume Gaudapada too shared our ignorance and after a millineum after
the Gita and the Vedanta Sutras, in a lightning flash of intuition, like
magic, came up with mayavada!
And this running scared is definitely funny, since it was Advaita
Vedanta which triumphed over Buddhism!
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