[Advaita-l] nirvisesha brahman

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Thu Aug 25 20:45:55 CDT 2011

On Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 7:37 PM, Rajaram Venkataramani <
rajaramvenk at gmail.com> wrote:

> The term nirguna brahman and saguna brahman are used repeatedly in sastras.
> I have heard that the term nirvisesha brahman is also used in the
> upanishads. Can someone please point me to that and shankaracharya's
> commentary to that?

To my knowledge the term 'nirvisheSham' is not found in any of the popular
Upanishads (for which there are commentaries by Shankaracharya, etc.).  Yet,
in the shAnkarabhAShyam we do find the term used in the sense of
'निरस्तसर्वोपाधि’ (one bereft of all upAdhis).

Of course the word finds occurrence in the srImadbhAgavatam.  One popular
place is the Devaki's stuti just upon the birth of Lord Krishna.  Here the
words 'nirguNam' and 'nirvisheSham'  also 'sattAmAtram' occur.  (10.3.24)

Madhva has quoted a Buddhist verse in his Tattvodyota to substantiate his
contention that Advaita is no different from Buddhism:

निर्विशेषं स्वयंभातं निर्लेपमजरामरम् ।
शून्यं तत्त्वमविज्ञेयं मनोवाचामगोचरम् ॥ ३

While commenting on the above I have shown that the term 'avisheShaH' is
found in an Upanishad which is cited (without the name of the upanishad) by
Sri Paramashivendra Saraswati in his 'vedAntanAmaratnasahasram'.  This word
means no different from the word 'nirvisheSham'.

> If possible, I would like to know how Ramanuja and
> Madhwa comment on the term nirvisesha.

I am unaware of the above.  Maybe the Madhva school has a meaning to give
for the above term in the Bhagavatam cited above.


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