Not Gaudapada, but Buddha!

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Wed Feb 18 12:59:02 CST 1998

On Fri, 6 Feb 1998, Chandran, Nanda (NBC) wrote:

> By nastika, I meant Buddha, not Gaudapada. For quite a few author are of the
> opinion that Gaudapada felt that Buddha was only expounding the philosophy
> of the Upanishads. And if it's Buddha that Gaudapada is saluting, then would
> Buddha be the first Advaitic teacher?
> Interestingly, even Ramana Maharishi felt that the Compassionate One's
> followers misinterpreted him.
> S Radhakrishnan is of the same opinion. And

This line of thinking is an old one.  Buddha is considered one of the
avatars of Vishnu Bhagavan.  So the story goes, the Asuras had overpowered
the Devas by becoming even more Dharmic then they were.  So in the form of
the Buddha Vishnu Bhagavan taught them heresy.  Unfortunately, this heresy
accidently leaked out into the world of men where it was misinterpreted.

Nowadays there are people who with an odd desire to bring Hinduism and
Buddhism together who make the same argument but this is not exactly
flattering to Buddhists is it?

> the reference to Narayana in Gaudapada's salutations are made mostly by
> Hindu monks belonging to one orthodox tradition or the other, who don't want
> the Buddhist influence to show.

If they suspected that his work showed Buddhist influence and they were
that keen to suppress it, why didn't they just let it die along with the
rest of Indian Buddhism?

> I think it's sad that we who strive for the TRUTH, for the sake of orthodox
> tradition, should not acknowledge and try to understand the greatness of the
> teachings of probably, the singular greatest philosopher Bharath has
> produced. Again it'll only be our loss!

Vidyashankar has already answered this well.  You are attempting to inject
modern notions into a completely different situation.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at>

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