[Advaita-l] BrahmaGYAna and jIvanmukti - 5 (Other References)

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Fri Feb 23 21:23:55 CST 2007

--- Vidyasankar Sundaresan <svidyasankar at hotmail.com> wrote:

> When talking of residual vAsanA-s and their removal after the rise
> of jnAna, 
> and what Sankara bhagavatpAda says about it, there are two things
> we must 
> bear clearly in mind. This is a very complicated topic that I have
> struggled 
> to understand over the years, so the following is the best general 
> explanation I can write up at this time, for whatever it is worth.
> 1. There is one position that is called prasaMkhyAna vAda, which
> says that 
> the jnAna obtained through SravaNa is never enough to result in
> liberation. 
> Therefore, meditation on brahman needs to be done and this will
> generate 
> fresh jnAna, which results in liberation. The proponents of this
> view 
> further say that this meditation is enjoined as a fresh action that
> needs to 
> be accomplished by one who has known brahman through hearing the
> vedAnta 
> sentences. In technical terms, this is called an apUrva vidhi.
> maNDana miSra is said to propound this theory in his brahmasiddhi,
> but 
> Sankara bhagavatpAda and sureSvarAcArya are quite opposed to this
> argument. 
> Firstly, the content of the jnAna of brahman is not something new
> nor other 
> than the jnAna taught in the upanishad-s and heard through SravaNa.
> Secondly, if meditation is a fresh action that is enjoined, the
> results of 
> that action will also be temporary, as results of all action. It
> can never 
> be the eternal knowledge of brahman. vAcaspati misra is said to
> attempted an 
> accommodation of maNDana's views with Sankara's views in the
> bhAmatI.
> Not having studied brahmasiddhi and bhAmatI in any depth, I am not
> sure to 
> what extent these authors can be tied in with the above positions.
> While I 
> have learned not to rely upon other scholars when it comes to
> making these 
> kinds of judgements, I have sufficient confidence in Swami
> Saccidanandendra 
> Saraswati's critical scholarship to think, for now, that maNDana
> and 
> vAcaspati do support a prasaMkhyAna argument.

Thanks for the detailed explanation. However, I don't think that SSS
has singled out the Bhamati as having been influenced by Mandana. SSS
thinks the Panchapadika also to be following Mandana, which is
probably a mistaken opinion.

There are two positions:

1) Effort after Sravana is required of everyone.
2) Effort after Sravana is required only of the person who lacks
perfect qualifications.

I'm not sure that SSS distinguishes between the two positions. If he
has, I'd like to see some definite evidence for it.

Here's a quote from "The Method of the Vedanta" where SSS claims that
the Panchapadika follows Mandana (page 156):

"Here, in contradiction to his own express teaching, he accepts, in
the manner of Mandana, the idea that immediate apprehension can arise
from repeated affirmation. WHY HE DOES SO IS UNCLEAR {emphases mine}.
And the author of the Panchapadika follows Mandana in other points of
his teaching, as when he says: 'Similarly, we see the continuation of
fear arising from the erroneous notion of a snake even in the case of
a rope that has been correctly known as such, when that correct
knowledge is forgotten'."


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