Info on Swami Saccidanandendra

Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian rbalasub at ECN.PURDUE.EDU
Tue Dec 3 15:26:52 CST 1996

Vidya wrote:

> It seems to me that he accepts only the commentaries on the prasthAna
> trayI and upadeSasAhasrI to be Sankara's own compositions. This is pretty
> much the same opinion taken by Ingalls, Hacker and others. As we have
> already discussed earlier on this list, the reasons for accepting
> upadeSasAhasrI as a genuine work of Sankara's and rejecting something like
> the vivekacUDAmaNi are not very satisfactory.

It is interesting to note that Jnanottama in his commentary on Sureshvara's
Naishkarmya Siddhi, says that Shankara has written other prakaraNa granthas
also! Now, Jnanottama is said to have lived in the middle of the 10th century.
Still, that's a 150-200 years from Shankara and his words may not satisfy
all Indologists.

> However, the Swami's contention that one has to go back to Sankara's works
> to understand advaita vedAnta is well taken. As he points out, the

Definitely true. The whole problem occurs because one is trying to explain the
nature of avidya. Shankara himself deftly avoids this and Sureshvara is also
not keen on explaining this in his Naishkarmya Siddhi.

Perhaps, the arguments like that of Gaudapada (in II) may not satisfy every
one and that is why Padmapada et al try to give some account of the nature of

As for the Swami's contention that advaita has been hijacked by the logicians
and the Yoga school, I don't know if that is a really bad thing. After all
taking good points from other schools is not bad. Gaudapada himself has set the
trend :-).


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