[Advaita-l] Antaryami Vishnu & anya devatas.
Jaldhar H. Vyas
jaldhar at braincells.com
Mon Nov 8 01:48:06 CST 2010
On Mon, 8 Nov 2010, krishna koundinya wrote:
> "Atman has no form. It is nitya, nirvikAri, sarvagataH. That which is
> infinite, all-pervading cannot have any form. Any form will limit the
> I am a smartha brahmin & I think I understand some of the basic tenets
> of advaita tradition. I am looking for strong vedic pramanas that
> explicitly state these that " Atman has no form or gunas". Are there
> any verses in the Vedas that state this directly ( without depending
> on inferences).??
See brhadaranyakopanishad 3.8.8 for instance:
sa hovAcha etadvai tadakSharaM gArgi brAhmaNA abhivadanti asthUlam
anantaramabAhyam na tadashnAti kiMchana na tadashnAti kashchana ||
"He said it is this Imperishable oh Gargi the knowers of Brahman is
that. It is not large not small not short not long not red-brown
colored, not oily, not shadowy, not dark, not air, not akasha, not
attached, without taste, without odor, without eyes, without ears, without
speech, without mind, not lustrous, without breath, without voice,
without measure, without interior, without exterior. It does not eat
anything and it is not eaten by anything."
 Maharshi Yajnavalkya speaking to Gargi Vachaknavi.
 Brahman which is akshara or imperishable or unchangable.
 Gargi had asked what is that pervades heaven and earth, above heaven
and below earth.
 This four-fold negation of dimension shows that brahmana is not a
 Lohita. Shankaracharya notes that this is a guna (quality) of fire.
This shows that Brahman is not a quality. dravya and guna are the two
major concepts in vaisheshika darshan and classical Indian science.
 Previously Yajnavalkya had told Gargi that the akasha (ether) pervades
the heaven and earth. Brahman pervades even the ether.
 from without taste... to here are attributes of the senses so Brahman
is shown to be beyond the comprehension of the senses.
 tejas can also mean power or heat.
> 5) With my very limited knowledge I was talking to some Madhva
> followers, they told me that " NIrguna"="Nir" + Guna",
To be grammatically correct, nis + guna
> which does not mean that without attributes or gunas, but it is
> something beyond comprehension but attributes do stay. It could have
> been stated as "Aguna" instead of nirguna.Now I am not good in sanskrit
> so I am at a loss.
If it is beyond comprehension then how do they know the gunas do stay?
Isn't incomprehensibility exactly the argument the author of the blog you
quote makes against Advaita Vedanta?
> Now I want to know is there a difference between "nirguna" & "aguna".
Not really but they seem to be making the argument that there is a
difference between not knowing the gunas and emphatically stating there
are no gunas.
> If so what is it?? and does nirguna actually means without attributes.
Yes. See shruti above.
> 6) I was also told that as an answer to Sri Madhusudana Saraswati
> swamy's "Advaita Siddhi" , Sripad Ramachandra Tirtha wrote "Tarangini"
> which refuted all the arguments in "Advaita Siddhi". I also heard of
> "advaita tatva sudha" but they maintain that it is not up to the
> standards or it is not a good refutation with some loop holes etc. How
> should we understand this?
we should read it ourselves and draw our own conclusions.
> 7) I found that Yoga Vashistha is being refuted while it is full of
> advaitic content.
> How should we take this ??
The author of that blog seems to have a problem with the idea that unreal
causes can have real effects. And he does not understand that jnana in
Advaita Vedanta is not just a greater quantity of knowledge but a shift in
scale of what constitutes knowledge. Understanding these concepts
resolves what seems like paradox at first glance.
Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at braincells.com>
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