[Advaita-l] Re: brahma satyaM, jaganmithyA

Annapureddy Siddhartha Reddy annapureddy at gmail.com
Mon Aug 28 16:39:00 CDT 2006

praNAM Sastriji,
       Thanks a lot for correcting and clarifying my understanding. Thanks
also for pointing to the sidhdAnta lEsha saMgraha.

praNAM Venkatramanji,
        Let me try and answer your questions here:

> 1. Is this not the very statement that provided a handle for Shri
> Ramanuja's
> attack on advaita? I understand bhavarupa as meaning a positive entity. So
> if Maya is a bhavarupa, Brahman's swarupa as advitIyam is vitiated and
> questions such as locus of maya arise. Are not the different
> post-shankaran
> theories in defence against arguments such as these?

All advaitins are agreed that from a pAramArthika perspective, brahma (the
Self) is the only entity. When we assert that mAyA has a bhAva rUpa, it is
only from a vyAvahArika perspective that we say so. Logically also, the
tenets of advaita vEdAnta could be defended if we stick to the three axioms:
-- brahma satyaM
-- jaganmithyA
-- jIvO brahmaiva nAparaH

Btw, by stating that mAyA is "dependent" on Ishvara, what is meant is that
the substrate of mAyA is nothing but brahma.

2. I am told that Shankara himself in his expositions on advaita avoided the
> above pitfalls. If he did so by remaining silent on them as some seem to
> suggest, that does not appear to be a strategy that Shankara would have
> employed. What was Shankara's own theory on Maya and Avidya?

You might want to refer to "The Method of Vedanta" by svAmi
sachchidAnandEndra sarasvati for a huge analysis of the various authors of
that age. AFAIK, shaN^kara asserted the above three axioms solely on the
strength of the upaniShat.h vAkyas, and did not indulge in dialectical
arguments to defend his position.



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