[Advaita-l] Do not bring Sankhya into Suddha Sankara Advaita

Venkatesh Murthy vmurthy36 at gmail.com
Fri May 17 00:20:40 CDT 2013

On Wed, May 15, 2013 at 5:37 PM, V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com>wrote:

> Let us note that even the Veda,   Veda Vyasa and Adi Shankara cannot
> explain Advaita without 'two' factors.  We say 'two' in quotes because the
> 'other', prakRti, is mithyA, being paratantra, that is something having
> only a dependent existence/reality, like a rope-snake,  and therefore not
> countable as the second to the advitIya PuruSha.
Holenarsipur Swamiji is saying there is no where in Sankara Bhashya any
scope for a OBJECTIVE Avidya like the Teekaakaaras are saying. The Avidyaa
is only Adhyaasa that is Misconception in the mind of human beings. This
Misconception Avidyaa is natural and a basic instinct for human beings.
Every man has the basic instinct 'Adhyaasa'. He thinks I am body and this
thing is mine. Ahamidam and Mamedam. A man with Misconception will imagine
so many things. He will imagine Ishwara and his Maya Sakti also. He can
imagine the  Avyakta Beeja Sakti also because Sastra is saying that. The
Sastra is also because of Adhyaasa only.The Beeja Sakti Avastha is also
there because it is imagined by Misconception. It is Avidyaa Kalpitaa only.
If someone says the Beeja Sakti Avastha is Moola Avidyaa it is not correct
because that is imagined by Adhyaasa that is Avidyaa. How can it be Moola

'It is a natural human procedure' Naisargiko Ayam Loka Vyavahaaraha means
that the nature of the human mind is such that in their unreflecting
condition men instinctively behave in a manner quite opposed to reason'.

Very important words in Adhyaasa Bhaashya are 'Mithyaa Jnaana Nimittaha
Satyaanrute Mithuneekrutya Ahamidam Mamedamiti Naisargiko Ayam Loka

In page 14 Sankara Vedanta Meemamsa Bhashya Swamiji has said -

'Owing to a Misconception' Mithya Jnana Nimitta is for explaining why the
procedure is 'natural' or Naisargika. Misconceptions unlike right knowledge
are quite natural to mankind. Right knowledge, on the other hand, is
adventitious for it flashes only to only those whose mind is saturated with
Sastric knowledge. Human mind by virtue of its natural inclination is
liable to mix up both the real Self and the unreal not Self and
instinctively thinks in the form 'I am this' 'This is mine'. Here the word
'I' refers to the real Self whereas 'this' corresponds to the not Self such
as the body. Man rarely suspects that this 'me' includes the real as well
as the not self, body etc. And this is mine refers to everything that is
other than the Self including the mind, senses and the body etc'.

The gist of the above quote is: But this primordial state is held by us to
> be subject to the supreme Lord, but not as an independent thing. [This is
> the crucial difference between sAnkhya and Vedanta where in the former this
> Shakti is independent in its activity while in vedanta it is only dependent
> on the Purusha/Brahman/Atman.] Continues Shankara: That state (the
> bIjashakti avasthA) has to be admitted because it serves a purpose.
> Without that latent state, the creatorship of Ishwara cannot have any
> meaning, inasmuch as Ishwara cannot act without His power of Maya, and
> without that latent state the absence of birth for the freed sould cannot
> be explained.  Why? Because liberation comes when the potential power of
> Maya is burnt away by knowledge.  That potential power, constituted by
> avidyA is mentioned by the word 'avyaktam'.  ...
Liberation comes when the Misconception Adhyaasa is removed. The potential
power is also imagined only because of Adhyaasa.

> Shankara goes on to give a number of shruti passages for the 'existence' of
> the power.  One can see several verses in the Bh.Gita too to this effect,
> one sample being:
> Here Veda Vyasa, the Lord, says that 'two' - prakRti and puruSha are anAdi
> and all the transformations have come up due to prakRti.
> True. But even the Anaadi Prakruti is Avidyaa Kalpitaa imagined.

> Thus the vedanta shAstra happily accepts 'two' for the
> prapancha/samsAra/bandha-mokSha vyavasthA.  Without the 'two' it is
> impossible for anyone, even for Sri SSS, to explain this.  His blaming the
> commentators is only because he has himself not understood the Vedanta
> method of explaining samsara, etc.  One can clearly see from the above
> presentation that Sri SSS's pointing to 'virodha' to the Bhashya from the
> commentators is ill-founded and from even the bhashya vAkyams one can prove
> his theories wrong.  I recently pointed out to the case of a scholar
> viewing Sri SSS's book saying this very thing that I have said above.

How it is wrong I would like to know.

> This vAkyam from the bhashyam cited above calls the lie of Sri SSS's
> statement above:  //Why? Because liberation comes when the potential power
> of Maya is burnt away by knowledge.  That potential power, constituted by
> avidyA is mentioned by the word 'avyaktam'.  ...//
> Here Shankara is admitting a bAdha for the avidyA by vidyA.  It is
> vidyAvirodhi that is avidyA.  Anything that is set right by knowledge has
> to be mithyA.  Here the power of Maya is burnt by knowledge.  Therefore
> that power and its kAryam has to be mithyA.  Thus there is nothing wrong in
> parsing the compound word 'mithyAjnAnam' as 'mithyA cha tadajnAnam cha' as
> Shankara is very clearly saying in the above cited passage.  In fact the
> very first sutra, brahma jijnAsA, was founded on this principle: since
> Atma-vit, the knower of Atman, goes beyond shoka, it is concluded that
> shoka is mithyAjnAnakAryam (because it needs 'knowledge of Atman' for its
> removal).
Liberation is from burning Adhyaasa. Because when Adhyaasa that is Avidyaa
is burned the Avidyaa Kalpita Maayaa Sakti is also burned. Maaya Sakti is
imagined because of Adhyaasa.If Adhyaasa is not there what can he imagine?
All the imaginations are burned.

> regards
> subrahmanian.v
> >
> > 'Moreover that the Avidya Shakti which is taken here to be what is meant
> by
> > the Mithyajnana - be it an invention of the author of the Tika himself or
> > borrowed from some foreign tradition and adapted here to propound his
> > theory is altogether opposed to the spirit of the Bhashya, is also seen
> > from the circumstance that this sub commentator attempts to prove the
> > feasibility of its acceptance on the authority of the Pramana Arthapatti
> > (presumption)'.
> >
> > 'For Sankara here expressly declares that all Pramanas or means to valid
> > knowledge in empirical life are based on Adhyasa itself. This is also
> > obvious from the fact that this writer identifies his 'Avidya Sakti' with
> > 'Maya' in direct opposition to the teaching of the Bhashya'.
> >
> > [[ All Pramanas like Pratyaksha are based on Adhyasa. If you are seeing
> > something you are seeing because there is Adhyasa of Body Mind and Sense
> > Organs on Atma. Same for other Pramanas. ]]
> >
> >
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