[Advaita-l] Vastuparicchinnatvam and Anyonyābhāva

Venkatraghavan S agnimile at gmail.com
Sun Feb 18 05:53:00 EST 2018

Namaste Subbuji,
Just a short note on the reason why naiyyAyikas define anyonyAbhAva as

Normally, we think that abhAva (absence) and pratiyogi (counterprositive)
are viruddha, mutually exclusive. For example, when a pot is present, we
cannot say that it is also absent there. However, this is not always true,
according to the naiyyAyika. According to him, even though the pot is
present on the ground, it is possible for the pot's absence with a
different sambandha to be present. To explain, the pot is in contact
(samyoga sambandha) with the ground. Similarly, the pot has an inherence
relationship (samavAya sambandha) with clay, its material cause. However,
the pot and the ground don't have samavAya sambandha. Thus even though the
pot is present on the ground, it is absent with samavAya sambandha, allowing
the logician to say भूतले समवायसंबन्धेन घटो नास्ति.

As a result,  navyanaiyyAyikas have refined this to say that viruddhatva
does not exist between abhAva and its pratiyogi, but between abhAva and the
pratiyogi's sambandha. The pratiyogi's sambandha which has viruddhatva to
the abhAva is termed pratiyogitA avacChedaka sambandha. That is, if such a
sambandha is present between the pratiyogi anuyogi pair, the pratiyogi
cannot have abhAva.

Coming to anyonyAbhAva /bheda - difference between two objects can only be
absent if the objects are the same, ie they have tAdAtmya. Therefore
tAdAtmya is the pratiyogitA avacChedaka sambandha for anyonyAbhAva. As a
consequence, anyonyAbhAva is defined as तादात्म्य अवच्छिन्न
प्रतियोगिताकाभाव: अन्योन्याभाव:. anyonyAbhAva is that which will be absent
if there is identity.


On Sat, Feb 17, 2018 at 5:39 PM, V Subrahmanian via Advaita-l <
advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:

> Vastuparicchinnatvam and Anyonyābhāva
> In the following talk on Ghaṭabhāṣyam (07), the Swamiji gives a short
> account of the four types of Abhaava and one of them is Anyonyābhāva:
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-VMhAGREaY&t=2318s
> (Listen from 1.07 onward)
> He says it is तादात्म्यसम्बन्धावच्छिन्नप्रतियोगिताकाभावः  And goes on to
> give the analogy of 'a cow is not a horse and vice versa'. On hearing this
> I recalled what Shankara Bhagavatpada has said for Vastuparicchinnatvam in
> the Taittiriya bhashya explaining the term 'Anantam', using the same
> analogy as the Swamiji has used:
> तथा वस्तुतः । कथं पुनर्वस्तुत आनन्त्यम् ? सर्वानन्यत्वात् । भिन्नं हि वस्तु
> वस्त्वन्तरस्य अन्तो भवति, वस्त्वन्तरबुद्धिर्हि
> प्रसक्ताद्वस्त्वन्तरान्निवर्तते । यतो यस्य बुद्धेर्निवृत्तिः, स तस्यान्तः
>> तद्यथा गोत्वबुद्धिरश्वत्वान्निवर्तत इत्यश्वत्वान्तं गोत्वमित्यन्तवदेव भवति
>> स चान्तो भिन्नेषु वस्तुषु दृष्टः । नैवं ब्रह्मणो भेदः । अतो
> वस्तुतोऽप्यानन्त्यम्
> [And Brahman is also infinite, object-wise as well. How is this
> established? Since Brahman is non-different from everything. An object that
> is different limits another object (different from it). A perception of one
> object will recede from another object that has become relevant. That
> object from whom an already existing object-perception is thwarted, then
> the latter is limited by the former.  For example, a cow-perception is
> thwarted by a horse-perception and hence the cow-perception is limited by
> the horse-perception. Such a limitation is seen in differentiated objects.
> No such difference exists for Brahman. Hence Brahman is infinite, anantam,
> even on the ground of objects.]
> Thus the concept of vastuparicchedatvam, being not different from mutual
> non-existence, anyonyaabhaava, is present in the nyaya dharshana.  The
> Vedanta uses this, vyatirekamukhena, to establish the anantatvam of Brahman
> by denying any difference whatsoever with Brahman as a factor.  Hence alone
> in Vedanta there is no absolute difference between two individuals, whether
> they be jivas of the category of humans or animals or devata-s and inert
> objects too. All pancha bheda-s that are accepted by non-advaitic schools
> are denied in Vedanta:
> jiva-jiva bheda, jiva-Ishwara bheda, jiva-jaDa bheda, jaDa-jaDa bheda and
> jaDa-Ishwara bheda. In order to accommodate vyavahara, a mithya-bheda is
> admitted where the abheda is not lost really.  Even among gods, if say,
> Vishnu is different from Brahma, then they both limit each other and are
> rendered finite and limited by time and also will have to be held to be
> born and liable to destruction. That is why they are not seen as different
> from each other, one only addressed by different names, as Sureshwaracharya
> has taught. Shankara has demonstrated this in the Mundaka Upanishad bhashya
> while denying the travel of a jiva to any abode of Brahman for moksha. It
> is also pertinent to note that the explanation Shankara gives in the
> Taittiriya bhashya cited above is in the vyavaharika level itself, where
> two different objects limit each other.  The cow-horse pair is the case he
> takes up for demonstrating this.
> regards
> subbu
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