[Advaita-l] Two prakRti-s of Brahman

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Wed Apr 25 19:29:20 CDT 2012

In the Kathopanishad bhashyam for the mantra 2.2.12: 'eko vashI
sarvabhUtAntarAtmA....' which means:

// There is one Supreme Ruler, the inmost Self of all beings, who makes His
one form manifold. Eternal happiness belongs to the wise, who perceive Him
within themselves—not to others. //

Shankara says:

//This Parameshwara who is all-pervading and Independent is One and who has
none equal to or greater than Him.  He has everything (in creation) in His
control.  How? He is the Inmost Self of everything/all beings.  This Ever
One Only Pure Consciousness (vishuddhavijnAnarUpaM) He multiplies into many
forms owing to the ashuddha upAdhis of names and forms, etc. And He 'does'
this just by remaining As He Is: svAtma sattAmAtreNa since He is endowed
with achintya shakti.  //

What is noteworthy here is a close correspondence of this bhashya with the
BG Seventh Chapter bhahsya.  There, specifying the two Higher and Lower
prakRti-s of Ishwara/Brahman, Shankara calls the former: vishuddhA.  And
the latter: ashuddhA, anarthakarI, samsArabandhanAtmikA.

Thus, remaining as He is, VishuddhA, His svarUpam, He enables the
manifestation of the world of variety by (resorting to) the ashuddhA
upAdhis. The Higher and Lower nature-s are seen to be brought out by
Shankara in the Katha bhashya too.  The term 'achintya shakti' in the
Bhashya explains how this One only Pure Consciousness that is Immutable
(nirvikArI) brings about this world of variety.  For, without this 'shakti'
no creation can come about.


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