[Advaita-l] Noumenon from Phenomenon
mahesh.ursekar at gmail.com
Fri Jun 3 16:23:05 CDT 2005
One of the monumental philosophical feats of the great Sankaracharya was
arriving at the necessity of Brahman from the phenomenal world of things
without the use of the Upanishads! I read that he did this via the Gaudapada
Karika (but I may be wrong). I do not have access to his arguments and if
anyone of you learned people could point me to a book (and where I could get
it in Mumbai would be most useful), I would be highly grateful.
In my own personal deliberations, bound as I am by reason and logic, I too
attempted this task in order to reduce dependence on "mere" faith. Below is
a synopsis of my thoughts (biased Westward a little). They might seem naïve
to many of you well versed in the abstruse points of philosophy. However, if
you could spare some time and blow my arguments apart or point to better
ones, you will find me highly obliged. For what they are worth, here they
It is often said - "you become who you think you are" or "the world is what
you make of it". While these might seem like aphorisms for daily living,
they are undeniable facts. How many of us are not aware of a supremely
intelligent person languishing in a mediocre job while a relative dullard
enjoying a high post? Sure, you could attribute it to karma or luck or what
have you but if you had a chance to know each person personally, the truth,
to some degree, would be revealed - the dullard had right thinking (or
attitude) while the brains were lost in negativity.
A corollary to the above - since your thinking defines you, it is your
deepest thoughts that guide where you are and where you are going. Sure, a
desire to marry Aishwarya Rai or Brad Pitt would be held by most but it is
only a surface thought (except maybe for Salman and Jennifer! ;-) ) and
doesn't eat us day and night. In short, you are inextricably moving towards
your deepest desires.
Now, while the above may be true, you can't deny that the dullard would
most likely not be resourceful enough to reach the high position he or she
is currently at. So, how does this happen? There seems to be a need of an
external agency (the argument of Yoga?) that is propelling him or her in the
direction of his or her deepest desire. My dullard meeting someone to sign a
great business deal can't happen unless something outside was aware of both
parties thoughts and bought them together.
Ok, if we grant an external agency, the question is - why can't this
external agency be a super human who thinks very fast and is guiding the
world. That may be so, indeed. However, none of us in our current human
states can achieve this, so we could say that this agency has superhuman
powers in order to accomplish this. In short, a God.
So, would it be possible for us humans to mortally tap into this power?
Yes, but that would make life meaningless since you become one with everyone
and have no need to do anything. Which probably means that this power is
most likely beyond the mind - or not caught in the mind's trap of time,
space and causation!
Can this power then have favorites? The world does not seem to reflect this
- the rich are sometimes miserable, the poor sometimes happy, the evil
sometimes possessing power and wealth, the good sometimes fraught with
Therefore, I am convinced that there is most likely a power (call it
Brahman) beyond space, time and causation that sustains the world. However,
I am unable to find convincing arguments to stretch the power to have to the
Swapura Lakshana - Sat, cit, ananda of Brahman mentioned in the scriptures.
Can someone help?
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