[Advaita-l] Re: Advaita-l Digest, Vol 6, Issue 3 the origin of Evil

N.Seshan seshan at aviontec.com
Fri Nov 7 04:49:06 CST 2003

Hi kartik
I would like to just clarify the point which you have quoted Ramana

1) If creation has no error, is it that the product of creation has an
innate error?
2) If Yes to (1), that the product of creation is error free at birth, then
acquires error later?
3) Ok, one way of arguing around the same could be to say that good/evil are
attributes that we construct, but if
     no such constructs are actually needed, what is the status of the
smriti texts?
4) It is ok to say the same from a stand where one is already enlightened,
but if u look from the point of view of a person who is not so, he has to
see some standard/ norm? Dont u think it is a dangerous statement for no
evil/good  in reality?
5) If error/evil are the constructs of mind alone and its thoughts or
standards, what happens to a mentally retarded person who is not possibly
able to have any such thought/social constructs? Does he come equivalent to

Pardon these possibly absurd questions, but let us set things right.
Speaking from the highest pedestal is all right, but the umpteen humans are
much below Ramana's state. At times, I do feel Ramana being quoted as
example for everything is injudicious bcos he is an exception rather than
the rule... no guru, no traditional learning, etc


 Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] The origin of evil
To: advaita-l <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
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--- "Jaldhar H. Vyas" <jaldhar at braincells.com> wrote:


> * The creator (Prajapati or Hiranyagarbha) first made a mental
> creation
>   (manasika srshti)  which was pure but failed to flourish so he made
>   woman and united with her to create all the living things through
>   intercourse.  (Maithuna srshti)  As the female was technically His
>   daughter, this was incest and because the act of creation was
> morally
>   flawed, so was the result.  Such a story is mentioned in the
> earliest
>   Vedic texts.

I think arguing that creation is flawed is essentially accepting that
the ultimate Creator Himself is flawed. Of course, Brahma the creator
is not worshipped for the sake of salvation in Hinduism, but the
"ultimate creator" is Brahman Itself. If creation by Brahman is seen as
a flaw, then there being "nothing else" to blame for this flaw, the
blame would fall on Brahman.

That's why in Christianity, typically creation is seen as perfect and
good, but Man somehow "made a mistake". It has never been
satisfactorily explained how God, a being who is incapable of error,
can create a being (Man) who is capable of error. Hume with his
"problem of evil" was attacking this fundamental notion.

Ramana Maharshi was asked, "Perhaps there was an error in creation?" to
which he replied, "There is no error in creation, the error is in us."
Another time, He said, "Creation is neither good nor bad; it is as it
is. It is the human mind which puts all sorts of constructions on it,
seeing things from its own angle and interpreting them to suit its own


PS: Shankara also handles this problem in his Brahma sUtra bhAshhya,
I'll try and post it soon.


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