[Advaita-l] Modern science and Vedanta.

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Thu Jul 21 12:13:01 CDT 2011

On Thu, Jul 21, 2011 at 6:17 PM, Br. Pranipata Chaitanya <
pranipata at hotmail.com> wrote:

> When madhusUdanaji says 'tat shabda ananvayAt'; why 'tat' is changed to
>> 'tatra' in your prediction.
>> >The objection of MS is for the missing 'tasmin kAle' or simply 'tatra' in
>> >the verse.
> I just wanted to know how you arrive at above conclusion.  The translation
> of gambhIrAnandaji for the sentence ' yatra kAle iti tu vyAkhyAnam asAdhu
> tat shabda ananvayAt' reads - 'The explanation of yatra as 'at the time
> when' is inappropriate since the word tat, that, stands isconnected'.
>  --which implies a word 'tat' in the verse is not explained (not included in
> the vyAkhyAna) and not some thing is not brought in like 'tatra kAle'.

My method is this:  (since) There is no 'tat-shabda' in that verse the yatra
(yat-shabda) when (if) taken to specify a kAla/time/period, remains open
like when we open a bracket we cannot leave it without closing it.  This is
the objection of MS.  He is not faulting the verse; he is faulting the
vyAkhyAna that considers, given there is only one yatra (excluding the yatra
cha in the second line) of verse 20, the opening yatra shabda to mean yasmin
kAle.  It is like opening a sentence with yasmin kAle and leaving it without
saying tasmin kAle at the end.  Shankara has no problem with this because He
assumes a tatra.  He only leaves it unmentioned.  He has on other occasions
explicitly said '...iti sheShaH'.  Anandagiri fills that gap by asking us to
assume/supply a tatra/tasmin kAle.  Let me also clarify that MS is not
objecting to 'not bringing in tasmin kAle / tat'.  His only objection is to
the way the yatra is opened when there is no corresponding word in the
verse.  'ananvayAt' means 'tat-shabdaH (yatra iti yat-shabdasya) anvetum

//You will also observe that 'yasmin avasthA visheShe' is not corelated by
'tasmin avasthA visheShe' by madhusUdanaji and hence such objection will
become untenable.//

This is exactly MS's plus point.  He has commented for the verse in such a
way which stays clear of the problem of the absence of the tat-shabda.  For
him it is simply a state of mind that is congenial for the arising of the
aparoksha anubhava.  So in his method there is no apekShA of a corresponding
tat shabda.  That is the reason why he is faulting the other vyAkhyAna which
evidently begs a tat shabda and which Anandagiri promptly supplies.

Having said this, let me present another observation of mine:

It is common knowledge that the Bh.Gita has a number of verses/ideas
'lifted' from the KathopaniShat.  Here is a couple of mantras from there
which correspond to the set of verses of the Gita that we are considering:

यदा पञ्चावतिष्ठन्ते ज्ञानानि मनसा सह ।
बुद्धिश्च न विचेष्टते तामाहुः परमां गतिम् ॥(*Katha Upanishad*, 10th Mantra,
Canto 6)

*When the five sense-organs of knowledge remain steady along with the manas,
and the buddhi does not act—that is the supreme state, say (the sages).*

यत्रोपरमते चित्तं निरुद्धं योगसेवया।
यत्र चैवात्मनाऽऽत्मानं पश्यन्नात्मनि तुष्यति।।6.20।।

[This is the chittavRtti nirodha of the Bh.Gita that corresponds to the
exercise/upAya for Atmopalabdhi taught in the K.up.]

//6.20 At the time when the mind restrained through the practice of Yoga
gets withdrawn, and just when by seeing the Self by the self one remains
contented in the Self alone.//
तां योगमिति मन्यन्ते स्थिरामिन्द्रियधारणाम् ।
अप्रमत्तस्तदा भवति योगो हि प्रभवाप्ययौ ॥

(*Katha Upanishad*, 11th Mantra, Canto 6)

*They (the sages) consider that as yoga—the steady control of the
sense-organs; the yogī must then be vigilant; for can be acquired and lost.*

तं विद्याद् दुःखसंयोगवियोगं *योगसज्ञितम्* ।

स निश्चयेन योक्तव्यो योगोऽनिर्विण्णचेतसा ॥ BG 6.22

Let that be known as the state called yoga—a state of disunion from (all)
union with sorrow. This yoga should be practiced with determination, *...*
*So, one can easily see the one to one correspondence between the K.up. and
the BG verses on the description of yoga, the goal and that it is what is
called/termed 'yoga' and that it has to be practiced without giving room for

Now comes the beauty of beauties:  Shankaracharya's commentary for the K.Up.
mantra(s): (I am highlighting just one or two sentences required for my
purpose here; one can read the entire bhashyam for these two mantras to have
a clearer idea)

**यदा यस्मिन्काले* स्वविषयेभ्यो निवर्तितानि आत्मन्येव ....अवतिष्ठन्ते...(for
the first quoted mantra)

There is a तदा in the second quoted mantra:
*तदा तस्मिन्काले *यदैव प्रवृत्तयोगो भवति इति सामर्थ्यादवगम्यते ।

So, we see that Shankara has closely followed the Up. mantra and the bhashya
He has written there while commenting on the BG verses.  He assumes a tadA
in the BG verse which is explicitly found in the Up.mantra. So, He is
immaculately exonerated from the objection MS has raised.

There is good news for MS too.  In the bhashya for the above Up.mantras
Shankara says: तामीदृशीं *तदवस्थां* योगं इति मन्यन्ते वियोगमेव सन्तम् ।
सर्वानर्थसंयोगवियोगलक्षणा हीय*मवस्था *योगिनः। एतस्यां *ह्यवस्थायां

In MS's commentary we have already seen that he takes it as
'avasthAvisheSha' which corresponds to/follows the Up.mantra and Shankara's

In conclusion, we find that Shankara has not at all erred.  MS too has not
deviated from the moola mantra and the BG verse tAtparya.  In fact one can
say that the kAla aspect is embedded in MS's commentary too even as we see
the 'avasthA' aspect even explicitly stated by Shankara.  Yet MS has voiced
that objection which he need not have.

Other viewpoints are welcome.



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