[Advaita-l] Inter Religious Dialogue - Part 1

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Mon Nov 21 09:18:09 CST 2011

Dear Rajaram,
I will address only the comments on apaurusheyatva from your response below.
On the other points, I've already said enough about them in earlier posts.
> > RV: To call apaureshyatva a belief system is reflective of the tendency to
> reduce sanatana dharma to the level of religious beliefs of Christians,
> Muslims, Gypsies and Aborigines. Our system has been traditionally defended
> using logic.
Please keep in mind that apaurusheyatva is not universally agreed upon even
within the six Astika darSana-s. A college course and text book in comparative
religions will not have the scope to go into these kinds of details. An intensive
course in Hindu studies would be a different matter.
> RV: Then schools should not teach that Bible or Quran is a revelation. They
> should teach that religions are a big bluff because we have scientific
> evidence about the origin of the universe, life and humans.

No, they actually don't. In fact, this is a criticism of academic religious studies
from the Christian right as well, in the USA. The same university that has a 
course in religious studies also teaches science courses.
> I have shown that apaureshyatva is not dependent on our conception of the
> origin of the universe because history of when a rishi hears the mantra.
> For apaureshyatva to be true, we only need sabda brahman to exist
> eternally.

And do remember that Sabda brahman and its eternal existence are not agreed
upon universally within pUrva mImAMsA, vedAnta and vyAkaraNa. Indeed, in
advaita vedAnta, brahman is beyond Sabda and even the veda is no longer veda
in the pAramArthika reality. In the context of this list's focus, advaita vedAnta
takes the veda very seriously when the veda itself says "vaco nivartante, aprApya
manasA saha" and "vedA avedA bhavanti". And you will be hard pressed to find
the term Sabda-brahman in the mImAMsA of Sabara, kumAriLa or prabhAkara.
It is a concept originating from the grammarian tradition and is not central to
mImAMsA positions on the apaurusheyatva of the veda, nor particularly in tune
with advaita vedAnta thinking on the prAmANya of the veda.


More information about the Advaita-l mailing list