[Advaita-l] Logic and shastra

Sanjay Srivastava sksrivastava68 at gmail.com
Wed Oct 19 09:06:38 CDT 2005

Sri Mahesh Ursekar wrote:

> All I
> am trying to say is if advaita claims that "Brahman is all there is" then
> what is the justification for this? Becuase it's in the book and I take
> based on faith? Not something that is agreeable to me.

Namste Mahesh-ji. Who am I to demand that myteries of reality should
conform to what is agreeable to me? Does Ishvara have an obligation to
create the universe in a fashion that I find agreeable?

"Brahman is all there is" comes through veda. Veda is considered
pramANa because, it is apauresheya. So far, so good. Your question
comes to how do we prove that vedas are apauresheya? Among the
vedantin achAryas, only bhagvAn madhwa has tried to establish the
apaurusheyatvam of vedas based on reasoning. Others have accepted it
as an axiom. If you want to go into the details of bhagvAn madhwas
logic for vedas apaurusheyatvam, you may ask a dvaitin or visit
dvaita.org. Personally, I am not convinced by his logic, though I
cannot find any fault with him.

At the end of the day, it boils down to faith. There are systems that
claim to solve the mysteries of reality on logic and reasoning alone.
If you have an angle on that front, go ahead and use them, and good

> My whole point in relation to science and shastras is that can we infer that
> consciousness is the reality that talked of in the shastras through a
> scientific approach.

and then..

>  I know that science is far from answering the basic question: "What is
> consciousness?" Infact people like Roger Penrose have claimed that a new
> physics is need to describe the phenomenon of consiousness.

The points above are based on a basic fallacy that the "consciousness"
that scientists are talking about is the same as "consciousness",
shAstra is talking about. They are not the same. Whatever a scientist
is talking about or can talk about is "consciousness" in third person
frame of reference. Note that whenever you are talking about
"consciousness", it can only be in third person frame of reference.

What shAstra is "talking about" is consciousness in first person frame
of reference. In fact the phrase "talking about" is misleading because
you can never "talk about " consciousness in first person. The moment
you start talking about it, the reference has already changed from
first person to third person. It is for this reason alone that shAstra
has to adopt a unique methodology to "talk about" something that
infact can never be "talked about".

What Penrose or any other scientist is trying to prove or disprove
about "consciousnes" is irrelevant to advaita. They are discussing two
different animals.


More information about the Advaita-l mailing list