[Advaita-l] mithyaa / anirvachaniiya and asattva

Naresh Cuntoor nareshpc at gmail.com
Sun Mar 17 15:06:29 CDT 2013

as putrahInA means a woman and putraH means son, so there is no repetition

Surely you agree that putrahInA (vandhyaa) is not a synonym for woman.
It only means a woman who cannot have a biological offspring.
So the problem is in equating putrahInA or vandhyaa with 'woman' without
further qualification;
similarly in equating andha with puruSha without any qualification
(sightless person, not just person).

> either useful or useless. This much regarding difference of visheShya part.
> Talking of visheShNAMshsa, putrahInA means ​​putrAbhAvaH and this is
> certainly not the meaning of word putraH.
> So, I don't see any repetition.

At no point did I say that there is repetition is in just "putrahInA" (or

> However, what you conceive as repetition comes only after we add another
> word to the word vandhyAputraH to make a sentence. But, that must have same
> meaning to cause it. So, vandhyAputraH sutarahitAjAtaH is a repetition and

No, the repetition occurs much earlier -- when you say putrahInAyAH putraH
(=putrahInAputraH = vandhyAputraH). In the vigraha, the first part
putrahInAyaH has already stated that you referring to a woman who does not
have a son. Then the uttarapada adds putraH. So the tautology is in pUrva
and uttarapadas. (I had hoped that the example of vAgdInavachanam would be
clearer in reflecting the tautology).

I used the more correct term 'tautology' instead of repetition to avoid
giving the impression that I am talking about dvirukti of the mandaM mandam
kind. I have no quibble with the ghaTo ghaTaH etc. point that was made.

Just to clarify - the point of this was not to question the asattva of
vandhyAputraH, but to say that the asattva is tautological without any
logical contradictions in the picture. In mathematical speak, one could say
that this is a trivial example of asattva. Trivial examples do not really
give a full understanding of the underlying principle. To give a crude
musical analogy, it is like saying Raga X has the swara 'pa'. This hardly
gives insight into the raaga itself because many ragas have pa. Similarly
in trying to understand the distinction between mithyaa and asattva through
examples, one would find trivial examples less illuminating.


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