[Advaita-l] upAdAna kAraNam.h

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Sun Apr 8 14:51:42 CDT 2007

--- Siva Senani Nori <sivasenani at yahoo.com> wrote:


> If you were to conduct a survey and I were the first respondent, I
> would have no problem in understanding your translations, but would
> I use it myself? No, not yet - for two reasons. To me 'material
> cause' works well enough, as you yourself have shown in an earlier
> post.

Actually, in my earlier post giving several meanings for the word
"Material", I had only looked the *noun* form of the word, not the
*adjective* form.

Here's adjective form of "Material":


Function: adjective
Etymology: Middle English materiel, from Middle French & Late Latin;
Middle French, from Late Latin materialis, from Latin materia matter
-- more at MATTER

1 a (1) : relating to, derived from, or consisting of matter;
especially : PHYSICAL <the material world>
(2) : BODILY <material needs>
b (1) : of or relating to matter rather than form <material cause>
(2) : of or relating to the subject matter of reasoning; especially :
EMPIRICAL <material knowledge>

Note that the term "Material Cause" (where "Material" is an
adjective), is used primarily as RELATING TO MATTER.

> Secondly, I am not confident enough and would confirm as much
> as possible - unless such confirmity is against the basic tenets -
> to ensure respectability. For similar reasons I would also not use
> 'ignorance', except in informal posts.

The fact that this translation/terminology has been used in the
literature for a few decades doesn't necessarily mean that it is
accurate. Perhaps it was reasonably accurate a long time ago, but not
as of today, as proven by the fact that many in this list have been
misled by the term:

1) Bhaskar implicitly took "Material Cause" to mean something
2) Prem has conceded that he too had misunderstood the term as
referring to something physical.
3) In my reply to Bhaskar, I pointed out that he had made the mistake
of considering the composition of Ignorance to be something MATERIAL,
without realizing that he had good cause for misunderstanding the
term, and I was only adding to the confusion.

How many more people have been misled into thinking that upAdAna
kAraNam.h should be matter-composed? Is it worth misleading another
generation of students?

> Regards
> Senani


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