[Advaita-l] upadhi

kuntimaddi sadananda kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Sun Aug 7 07:14:32 CDT 2011

Subbuji with due respects, I have to disagree with some of statements below or at least with the meaning that they projected to me. 

--- On Sat, 8/6/11, V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com> wrote:
There is no 'real' luminosity in/for/of Brahman.  Luminosity is an object of
the organ eye.  Brahman has been taught in the Kathopanishat as 'arUpam',
without any form, thereby determining that It is not a vishaya for the eye.
'na tatra chakshurgacchati' says the Kenopanishat too.  The Mundaka too has
this kind of teaching.  Then, what is the luminosity that is being spoken of
here as being that of Brahman?  It is certainly a way to show, depict,
Brahman, saguNa, as endowed with an excess of abundance of any virtue found
in anything in creation.  In other words, there should/aught  not be
anything in creation that exceeds Brahman in anything.  When we see the Sun,
etc. we are awestruck with the luminosity there.  If we conclude that the
Sun is the best or most luminous then we have to be shown as wrong.  Our
true awe-inspirer aught to be none other than Brahman.  So in order to show
that the Sun, etc. should not be concluded to be the best/most luminous, the
scripture 'attributes' Brahman with an infinitude of luminosity.  The
Kathopanishat, for example, teaches the Yoga for realization of Brahman.  It
says that during that meditation one should make all the sense organs, the
mind and the intellect non-functional (in their normal modes).  It is then
that the true nature of Brahman gets revealed.  If Brahman were to be
endowed with physical light in abundance or in whatever quantity, this
teaching of the upanishad is to be held wrong.  For with the organ eye not
operating, how is it one to realize the luminous Brahman?  How can one
appreciate the luminosity of a powerful bulb or even the sun with closed
The absolute Brahman being defined as satyam-jnaanam-anantam, admitted from the point of a seeker since no words can reach there. Since all the discussions are within vyavahaara pointing to the seeker about the absolute nature of Brahman which cannot be described otherwise, scriptural description of even arUpam is also in the same token to dismiss any limiting adjunct form. To prevent objectification of that Brahman kena still defines as - It is eye of the eye, ear of the ear etc,  even while indicating – na tatra chakshurgacchati – and yet point out – yena chacchumshi pasyati, yena shrotram idam shrutam– tat eva brahma tvam viddhi – na idam yat idam upaasate - while dismissing the objectifyable Brahman in the upaasana stage. In that light only we need to understand the statement – tasya bhaasa sarvam idam vibhaati – while dismissing any light to see that light of consciousness. 
Light is required to see any object that is external to us. Yet we see the pitch darkness where no only light is needed to see it, and if there is a light in in fact prevents us to see the darkness. In what light I see darkness – that is the light of consciousness as part of tasya bhaasa sarvam idam, where idam-darkness is obviously included in the sarvam. In the Vedanta paribhaasha – perceptuality condition is defined where the existence of the object which is transformed as the existence as a thought in the mind is known only when the all -pervading light of consciousness that first reflected in the mind is further reflected by the thought to reveal the thought to the mind that is acting as subject to the chidaabhaasa. Perceptuality condition is stated in words as the consciousness of the subject and the existence of the object as a thought are united for one (chidaabhaasa) to become conscious of the existence of the thought and thus the object out
 there. Luminosity here is like external luminosity that makes the object seen, reflected light of consciousness that the mind illumining the object-thought. Thus every thought is known only when the light of consciousness illumines the thought that is rising in the mind. Since it is reflected light (chidaabhaasa) from the mind that falls on the thought, mind first to be  active for any objective knowledge to take place. This completes the statement – tasya bhaasaa sarva idam vibhaati  -since sarvam idam is transformed to sarvam idam thoughts which have to be illumined by the light of consciousness for them to be known. 
On the same token – kathopanishad statement also has to be understood correctly. If I make all the senses non-functional, the mind also become non-functional if memory is also is stopped, and I go to sleep. In the light of reflection, not only I need the light to see the object, interestingly, I need the object to RECOGNIZE the light that is present everywhere. If there is pure light all over and if there is no object to reflect, one cannot recognize the existence of the light- This is the crux of the statement that mind which is also an object is required for realization. As my hand reflects the light that is in space where my hand is, not only the hand is seen but the light is in that space that is now falling on the hand and getting reflected is now recognized. Similarly a thought is required to see the light of consciousness and Yet it is not the thought but the light because of which thought is seen or know or being consciousness of. Hence if no
 thought arises in the mind, please rest assured that no recognition of the consciousness can takes place – hence the statement – yena cakshuumsi pasyati –That because of which eyes can see.
I am conscious of the darkness, and also the sun or the powerful light out there only because – tasya bhaasaa sarvam idam vibhaati – is absolutely valid statement. Without the thought lighted by light of consciousness, one has cannot know there is darkness, the sun or the bright light. That is the absolute illuminator where we do not need another light to light it since that is true self-luminous entity which is stated as – jnaanam or chit swaruupam in the Tai- Up. 
I know you know all this, but implied statement of your post may give wrong message. Hence, my detailed response. 
As a note pertaining the discussion on Iswara and Brahman– upaadhi is required for realization just as thought is required to recognize the all pervading light of consciousness – just as it is not the thought (neti,neti) but it is that because of which thought is seen, in the same way it is not the upaadhi but because of which the upaadhi is functioning should be the knowledge-shift. Nirupaadhika Brahman cannot be recognized without the upaadhi also. In the case of Iswaropaasana, the realization involves appreciation of the all pervading existence-consciousness both manifesting as the beautiful creation as well as the knowledge of that creation as I am conscious of the creation. Looking at the creation, I have to see the nirupaadhika Brahman that pervades as existence of it and also as illuminating as the knowledge of it while only rejecting superficial forms and names which are required for transactional purpose. Appreciation of the creation becomes
 appreciation by the jnaani as Vibuuti of the Lord – and knows as his own vibhuuti he has understood through the sastras that he is the existence-consciousness which is unlimited. 
Yo mam pasyati sarvatra sarvan ca mayi pasyati| 
Sarva bhuutastam aatmaanam sarva bhuutani ca aatmani|
>From equivalent statements which Krishna provides both from the point of Bhakti and from the point of jnaanam
Hari Om!

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