[Advaita-l] A question on Sanskrit usage

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Thu Nov 18 11:41:14 CST 2010


The word 'vAdaH' appears to be in the masculine form.  In the Apte
Dictionary under this word no other form is given.  Under the word
'mAyAvaadaH' this meaning is given: the doctrine of illusion, a term applied
to Buddhism.

There are several other instances of this word  used in other popular
works.  For example in the Bh.Gita we have: vAdaH pravadatAm aham (10th
ch.32 verse).  There are wrods like 'pariNmavAdaH', 'vivartavAdaH' in famous
Advaitic works.

However, in the following verse, the word is used as 'mAyAvAdam' in the
neuter gender. This however goes with the word 'shAstram' which is neuter by
default.  The sentence appears to be in the nominative case all through:
asacchAstram, pracchannam bauddham.  It does not appear to be in the
objective (dviteeyA vibhakti) in which case the 'm' ending will be correct
for both masculine and neuter words.  I am curious to know how the word
'mAyAvAdam' fits in this line in its stated form.  Going by the grammar, it
aught to be 'mAyAvAdaH' and the verse should ideally read:
mAyAvAdo'asat....(with an avagraha).  Will anyone please explain the usage
here?  I have considered 'ArSha prayogaH' or 'cChAndasa prayogaH' by taking
recourse to which alone the 'm' ending for this word in the nominative be
explained.  Even here, is such a usage allowed? Are there any rules
governing this usage?

Padma Purana 6.236.7

mayavadam asac chastram pracchannam bauddham uchyate
mayaiva kalpitam devi kalau brahmana rupina

mAyAvAdamasachchAstraMprachchannaMbauddha ucyate |
mayaivakathitaMdevikalaubrAhmaNarUpiNA || Pa Pur 6.236.7 ||

[The doctrine of MAyA (illusion) is a wicked doctrine and said to be
pseudo-Buddhist. I myself, of the form of a brAhmana, proclaimed it in Kali
(age). (padma puraaNa, uttara-khaNDa, 236.7)]

Also, in the two readings above, the word 'bauddham' is differently
rendered.  I presume the latter rendering is a spelling mistake.


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