[Advaita-l] Fw: Pramanas - Sruvit vs. Anubhava (was re: Some rebellious remarks on Sri SSS)
Siva Senani Nori
sivasenani at yahoo.com
Fri Apr 27 01:52:46 CDT 2007
You had asked:
"dont you think shankara himself clarified his position with regard to
this?? In the sUtra bhAshya shankara clearly says shruti is NOT the only
pramANa in brahma jignAsa but shruti etc. intuition etc (anubhavavasAnatvAt
bhUtavastuvishayatvaccha etc....). are the valid pramANa. Ofcourse in the
dharma jignAsa shaastra is the ONLY pramANa..."
I think bhagavatpAda has definitely made it clear that Sruti is not the only pramANa, but intuition and inference are also pramANas. The point is different. According to Sri Ramakrishnan's paper, SSS considers anubhava the "kingpin" among pramANas. I will not follow the tradition of literary crticism of analysing the word "kingpin", but it is reasonable to conclude that SSS attaches the highest level of importance to anubhava. The position of the bhagavatpAda is actually different with Sruti occupying the highest level of authority.
The hierarchy among pramANas is not pedantic, though to my knowledge an explicit hierarchy has not been stated in the basic texts. Some people like Sri Guy Werlings and Sri Aditya Varun Chaddha, giving lesser or no importance to Sruti, arrive at conclusions quite different from orthodox positions. Where Sri Werlings would call it "religion" if something propounded by Sruti, say Brahman, is not experienced, Sri Chaddha is comfortable if something called "Chunky" takes the place of Brahman, with absolutely no reference to Sruti.
I get the impression that SSS's conclusion are not dramatically removed form orthodox positions, but the assumption that anubhava is the kingpin among pramANas must lead to that. Hence, my request on how SSS reconciles the kingpin status of anubhava with the principle that Sruti reveals something not experienced.
In other words, to put it bluntly and without any scope for mis-understanding, since SSS indeed considers anubhava to be the kingpin among pramANas, there being only three pramANas (or at best six), it follows that anubhava is a better pramANa than Sruti. Such a position is at odds with the teachings of the Acharyas since Sri Sankara himself unambiguously states that one does not declare the existence of Brahman just because one is forever experiencing Brahman, but does so on the strength of Sruti.
Since the above is the only instance where SankarAchArya explicitly states that he experiences Brahman, I hope you do not need the references.
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