[Advaita-l] neha nAnAsti kiMchana

Nomadeva Sharma nomadeva at yahoo.com
Sat Jun 14 07:40:33 CDT 2003

--- S Jayanarayanan <sjayana at yahoo.com> wrote:

Dear Jayna,

Ignore my mail if somebody has answered on the same points. I apologize
for the duplicity, but after a general scan, i find that some points
have not been brought out at all.

> > There is no bhEda between one paramAtma-roopa and
> > another,
> > There is no bhEda between one guNa and other guNa of
> > parabrahman.
> > There is no bhEda between His guNa, kriya, jnAna,
> > bala, kriyA, ichchA etc
> > which is again very very consistent with other
> > upanishats.

> That interpretation leads to the nonsensical equation
> of guNa = kriya = GYAna = etc. 

While I agree that Jay N has not mentioned all the necessary concepts
to make the above set of statements intelligible, I am surprised that
you find this equation non-sensical, while you don't have any problems
in advaita interpretation of 'satyaM j~nAnaM anantaM brahma', where
Truth = knowledge = infinity = brahman? (Shankara bhAShya on Tai.U:
satyaM brahma j~nAnaM brahma anantaM brahmeti).

In any case, know that the equation proposed by saying there is no
svagatabheda is not same as what you wrote. 

I am also surprised that you are using logic to evaluate a shruti
statement on Brahman. Why don't you do similar analysis for nirguNa
brahman? Isn't it just ludicrous to hold that there can be some (bhAva)
object without any attributes at all? If you can accept shruti's words
(rather your analysis of them in such cases), why don't you do the same

> Here's how Shankara correctly interprets this verse:
> iha - here, in Brahman, nAnA - diversity, kiMchana -
> even so little, na asti - does not exist. 
> "In Brahman, there are no distinctions *whatsoever*."

Good. That's how Sri Madhva also interprets. But he goes one step ahead
to see what this diversity means and hence the conclusion. To do any
analysis in this regard, one cannot ignore shruti that ascribes lot of
qualities to the Brahman:

'parA.asya shaktirvividhaiva shrUyate svAbhAvikI j~nAna bala kriyA
cha', 'AnandaM brahmaNo vidvAn', 'yaH sarvaj~naH sarvavit.h', 'eSha
pUrNaH', 'satyakAmaH satyasaMkalpo'.

Notice that the Shvetashvatara says that the qualities of j~nAna, bala,
kriyA are 'svAbhAvikI' (intrinsic). 

So, how do you harmonize them? (Also, let me know if you need more
shruti statements that ascribe positive qualities to Vishnu, the

> Since Brahman in advaita vedAnta is the Supreme Reality, it means 
> there are no distinctions in Reality. 

No distinctions in Supreme Reality (as follows from your first
sentence) :-)

> The latter part of the same verse KU 2.1.11 speaks of
> one who sees distinctions:
> mR^ityoH sa mR^ityum gachchhati ya iha nAneva pashyati

Yes, yes. It also says that this puruSha, in whom differences should
not be seen, sits in the AtmA.

It also predicts that one will 'fall', who sees the qualities
separately or differently (evaM dharmAn.h pR^ithak.h pashyan.h). Notice
that it does _not_ say, 'evaM dharmAn.h pashyati' (which would have
helped your case), instead says 'evaM dharmAn.h pR^ithak pashyan.h'
(the 'pR^ithak is harmful for your case).

So, for saying that it is difference-less entity, but with multiple
attributes, Sri Madhvacharya uses the concept of visheSha. Not knowing
or understanding which, one will write equations such as that you
wrote. I am surprised that Jay N did not mention the concept of
visheSha as soon as he wrote what svagatabhedavivarjita means.


Do you Yahoo!?
SBC Yahoo! DSL - Now only $29.95 per month!

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list