Sankhya vs. Advaita Vedanta
shrao at NYX.NET
Sat Feb 13 23:27:00 CST 1999
> Namaskaar All,
> I was reading about Samkhya a couple of days ago and from a cursory
> reading (have to admit it was an online source with a bare description),
> I found a lot of similarities between the Maya as Sri Sankara has
> described the world and Prakriti, as Sage Kapila has described it. The
> same goes for Purusha vs. Brahma. Pardon my ignorance but can anyone
> describe to me the basic differences ?
The most important difference, as I see it, is that the similarities
have not been considered significant enough, and the sAN^khya doctrine
is roundly rejected in Sri Shankara's BSB:
tatra padavAkyapramANaj~nena AchAryeNa vedAntavAkyAnAM brahmAvagati-
*pUrvapaxIkR^itya nirAkrityante* | tatra sAN^khyAH pradhAnaM
triguNamachetanaM jagataH kAraNamiti manyamAnA AhuH -- yAni
vedAntavAkyAni sarvaj~nasya sarvashakterbrahmaNo jagatkAraNatvaM
darshayantItyavochastAni pradhAnakAraNapaxe.api yojayituM shayante |
sarvashaktitvaM tAvatpradhAnasyApi svavikAravishhayamupapadyate ...
(the pUrvapaxa to sUtra I-1-5)
-- where, as you can see, he opines that the view that the statements
in favor of Brahman can also be interpreted in favor of the `pradhAna'
of the sAN^khya, is rejected by the sUtrakAra as a pUrva-paxa.
A little later, in explaining the sUtra `IxaternAshabdam.h', he states:
na sAN^khyaparikampitamachetanaM pradhAnaM jagataH kAraNaM shakyaM
vedAnteshhu Ashrayitum.h | ashabdaM hi tat.h |
-- that the `pradhAna' is `ashabda' or not spoken of in the Vedas; he
further holds later on that such Shruti statements as `tadaixata bahu
syAM prajAyeyeti' (chAndoga VI-2-3), `sa IxAchakre, sa
prANamasR^ijata' (prashna u. VI-3) cannot be applied to `pradhAna'
because the latter is insentient and cannot be an experiencer and an
all-knower like Brahman: `na cha achetanasya pradhAnasya sAxitvaM
asti, tasmAd.h anupapannaM pradhAnasya sarvaj~natvam.h'.
As such, there is little reason to believe that the Brahman of Advaita
and the pradhAna of the sAN^khya are interchangeable.
"bhava shankara deshikame sharaNam"
List archives : http://listserv.tamu.edu/archives/advaita-l.html
More information about the Advaita-l mailing list