[Advaita-l] अनिर्वचनीयख्यातिः (सदसद्विलक्षणत्वम्) in the श्रीमद्भागवतम् Part 2 (2) - Concluded

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Sat Mar 12 04:40:11 CST 2011

(Continued from Part 1)

The verse

देहं मनोमात्रमिमं* *गृहीत्वा *ममाहमित्य*न्धधियो मनुष्याः |
*एषोऽहमन्योऽयमिति** **भ्रमेण* दुरन्तपारे तमसि भ्रमन्ति ||

quoted above is also a fine study in the understanding of the adhyAsa
bhAShya  (AB) of Shankaracharya. The word ममाहमित्यन्धधियो is reminiscent of
the words: ’अहमिदं ममेदं इति नैसर्गिकोऽयं लोकव्यवहारः’  of the AB.  Shankara
demonstrates how the fundamental adhyAsa translates into the thinking of the
samsAri in ignorance: He is always, inseparably as it were, endowed with the
thinking 'I am so-and-so' and 'these are mine'.  Sri PurandaradAsa in
his famous
song: ಇನ್ನು ದಯೆ ಬಾರದೆ ದಾಸನ ಮೇಲೆ ’innu daya bAradey dAsana mEle' uses these
two terms: ’nAnu-nannadu emba narakadoLage biddu..' ('having fallen in the
hell characterized by 'I' and 'mine'...').

The term: *एषोऽहमन्योऽयमिति** **भ्रमेण*.. is also interesting.  This can be
taken as the Bhagavatam's refutation of the 'jiva-jiva' / 'jiva-Ishwara'
bheda since it calls it a 'bhrama'. In the BrihadAraNyaka Upanishad
*अन्योऽसौ*, अन्योऽहं इति न स वेद (He who knows he is different and the deity
is different, does not really know; he is indeed cattle for the Deva-s)
(1.4.10) This sentence occurs in the context of the teaching of 'अहम्
ब्रह्मास्मि', Aham Brahmasmi. *...*

The Briharadranyaka Upanishad 2.4.14 teaches:
यत्र हि द्वैतमिव भवति तदितर इतरं पश्यति…..[Where there is duality as it
were, one sees something else as different from oneself….]

The Bhaagavatam echoes the above statement of the Upanishad.  By teaching
that the vision of difference is 'भ्रम’, the BhAgavatam makes it clear that
भेददृष्टिः is born of ignorance.

 It also specifies that knowledge, vidyA, is 'आत्मनि भिदाबाधः’ (विद्या
आत्मनि भिदाबाधः ...11.14.40), the sublation/destruction of difference
constitutes knowledge.

नेह नानास्ति किञ्चन मृत्योः स मृत्युमाप्नोति य इह नानेव पश्यति (There is not
a wee bit of duality/multiplicity here.. Whoever sees duality as it
weregoes from death to death. Br.Up. 4.4.19 and Kathopanishad 2.1.11)
By using
the particle इव ‘as it were’, the Upanishad says in unmistakable terms that
*dvaita is only an appearance*, not the reality. However, the dualistic
schools have found it a great discomfiture to handle this ‘इव” particle and
give some completely irrelevant, artificial, out-of-context meaning to avoid
the straightforward Non-dualistic purport.


In the foregoing the phenomenon of the world being categorized in the nature
'अनिर्वचनीयत्वम्’ being सदसद्विलक्षणम् was presented with various verses
from the srImadbhAgavatam.  The anvaya and vyatireka methods of defining
what is 'mithyA' was also seen:

   - सत् चेत् न बाध्येत, असत् चेत् न प्रतीयेत (if it is existent, it would
   not get sublated upon the knowing of the substratum.  On the other hand, if
   it is non-existent, like a hare's horn, it would not have become an object
   of experience, knowing.)This constitutes the व्यतिरेकमुखेन मिथ्यात्वकथनम्
   . In other words, what is not sublatable, बाध्यमानत्वम्, and what is not
   experienceable, प्रतीयमानत्वम्, cannot constitute mithyAtvam.  If
   something is sublatable yet being experienceable  it will qualify to be
   designated as mithyA. प्रतीयमानत्वे सति बाध्यमानत्वम् मिथ्यात्वम्. The
   hare's horn/sky-flower, etc. will never come into this category.
   - Then what is mithyAtvam? The answer to this question is available in
   the bhAgavatam verse we saw above: मनोमात्रत्वम्. Having no real
   existence other than being only a mental idea is what qualifies to be
   mithyA.  This is the अन्वयमुखेन मिथ्यात्वकथनम्.  Clearly, this being
   मनोमात्रम् is the BhAgavatam’s way of admitting the category of
   सदसद्विलक्षणम्.  The absolutely non-existent sky-flower, hare's horn,
   etc. will never qualify to be मनोमात्रम् and thereby fit to be called
   - Most importantly what the bhAgavatam has done is to prove the category
   of 'mithyaa' the way the Advaita system has done: that which is distinct
   from both 'sat' and 'asat'.
   - It will be impossible for anyone to disprove the above.
   - Like several verses of the BhAgavatam, especially the uddhavagItA
   portion, even the above verse containing the word 'मनोमात्रम्’ has
   several parallels in the GaudapAdakArikA.  The verses 3.29, 30, 31 and 32
   are particularly noteworthy.  Even here, verse 31 reads thus along with the
   bhAShya: *मनोदृश्यमिदं* *द्वैतं* यत्किञ्चित् चराचरम् । मनसो ह्यमनीभावे *
   द्वैतं* नैवोपलभ्यते ॥ 31 ॥  — रज्जुसर्पवद्विकल्पनारूपं द्वैतरूपेण मन
   एवेत्युक्तम्। तत्र किं प्रमाणमिति, अन्वयव्यतिरेकलक्षणमनुमानमाह। कथम् ?
   तेन हि मनसा विकल्प्यमानेन दृश्यं मनोदृश्यम् इदं *द्वैतं* सर्वं मन इति
   प्रतिज्ञा, तद्भावे भावात् तदभावे चाभावात्। मनसो हि अमनीभावे निरुद्धे
   विवेकदर्शनाभ्यासवैराग्याभ्यां रज्जवामिव सर्पे लयं गते वा सुषुप्ते *द्वैतं
   * नैवोपलभ्यत इति अभावात्सिद्धं द्वैतस्यासत्त्वमित्यर्थः । [ 3.31: All the
   multiple objects, comprising the movable and the immovable, are perceived by
   the mind alone. For duality is never perceived when the mind ceases to act]
   'This duality, as a whole, that is perceived by the mind, is nothing but the
   mind (note the word मनोमात्रम् in the bhAgavatam verse), which is itself
   imagined (on the Self)' - this is the pratijnA, proposition.  For duality
   endures so long as the mind does (anvaya), and disappears with the
   disappearance of the mind (vyatireka). For, when the mind ceases to be the
   mind, when, like the illusory snake disappearing in the rope, the mind's
   activity stops through the practice of discriminating insight and
   detachment, or when the mind gets absorbed in the state of deep sleep,
   duality is not perceived.  From this non-existence is proved the unreality
   of duality.  This is the purport.


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