[Advaita-l] References in Shankara's BSB

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Thu Jan 21 00:55:52 CST 2016

Now the references to Upanishads which form the core of his commentary on
the Vedanta Sootras


He isolated the Upanishad lore from the rest of the Vedic body and narrowed
it down to ten or twelve Upanishads. Even here, he did not include the
ritualistic portion of the Vedas. This was in contrast to the
classification followed by the later Acharyas.

Paul Deuessen the German Indologist in his work” The Systems of the
Vedanta”, diligently counted the number of references made to Upanishad
texts in Sri Shankara’s Vedanta Sutra Bashya. He found, Sri Shankara, in
his Bashya, quoted Upanishad texts as many as 2,000 times. The Upanishads
from which he quoted frequently and the number of quotes were: Chandogya
(810), Brihadaranyaka (567), Taitereya (142), Manduka (129), Katha (103),
Kaushitaki (88) and Svethavatara (53).

The other Upanishads he referred to were: Prashna (39), Aithereya (22),
Jabaala (13), Ishavasya (8) and kena (5).

Besides he quoted from “Agni Rahasya” (Shathapatha Brahmana), Narayaniyam
(Taitteriya Aranyaka) and “Pingani Rahasya Brahmana” as if to suggest they
carried as much authority as the Upanishads.

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