[Advaita-l] Shankara and DrishTi-SrishTi vAda - eka jeeva vaada

Anand Hudli anandhudli at hotmail.com
Thu Jun 16 12:03:03 CDT 2016

This will be my last e-mail in this dialog with Shri Chandramouli. This
dialog has entered the realm of unreasonableness  and preconceived bias and
I think I should stop.

The phenomena of snake-rope,
silver-nacre, a mirage, and the dream world have been explained by
different schools of thought in different ways. All of them are not agreed
that they represent prAtibhAsika satya. So many well defined and well
established terms like  mithya, prAtibhAsikasatya, anirvachanIya etc were
already available to PrakAshananda to explain the status of the world had
he deemed it fit instead of using the examples of snake-rope,
silver-nacre, a mirage, and the dream world.But he does not use any of them
even once in his work. On the otherhand, it is he who has preferred to use
the word “tuccha” instead of those terms in several places in his work.It
is not that I am saying so. Evidently he does not intend  those examples as
representative of  prAtibhAsikasatya.   As you yourself say, << It is
better to hear
the words straight from the horse's mouth rather than rely on other people
quoting what is supposed to have been said by PrakAshAnanda.>>. Why should
we use the term prAtibhAsikasatya which he has so conspicuously avoided
instead of the term tuccha which he has preferred to use ??
end of quote

If you do a search for प्रातिभासिक  or व्यावहारिक followed by सत्य or
 सत्त्व or सत्ता  on the advaita sharada website  considering all of
Shankara's Prasthanatraya BhAShyas, ( http://advaitasharada.sringeri.net/),
you will find that there are zero hits. Now, that should tell us something.
What does it tell us? That these terms were coined by later advaitins to
explain concepts such as rajjusarpa and shukti-rajata that are used in the
Shankara BhAShyas themselves. For example, you will find Shankara saying in
BSB 2.1.4, Kathaka Upanishad Bhashya,  Mandukya Bhashya, etc.  - न हि
रज्जुसर्पेण दष्टो म्रियते ; नापि मृगतृष्णिकाम्भसा पानावगाहनादिप्रयोजनं
क्रियत इति , स्वात्मयाथात्म्यज्ञानेन मरीच्युदकरज्जुसर्पगगनमलानीव
मरीचिरज्जुगगनस्वरूपदर्शनेनैव स्वस्थः प्रशान्तः कृतकृत्यो भवति यतः,
तस्यापरमार्थरूपमविद्याकृतं रज्जुसर्पादिसममुक्तं पादत्रयलक्षणं
बीजाङ्कुरस्थानीयम्, रज्जुसर्पविवेकसमकाल इव रज्ज्वां सर्पनिवृत्तिफले सति
रज्ज्वधिगमस्य, न हि रजतसर्पपुरुषमृगतृष्णिकादिविकल्पाः
शुक्तिकारज्जुस्थाणूषरादिव्यतिरेकेण अवस्त्वास्पदाः शक्याः कल्पयितुम् ,
प्राणादिविकल्पस्यावस्तुत्वाच्छुक्तिकादिष्विव रजतादेः , etc. Shankara says
clearly in Mandukya Bhashya on Karika 18, यथा अयं प्रपञ्चो मायारज्जुसर्पवत्,
that the world  is like an illusory snake on rope.

It is only the later advaita works such as the Vedanta Paribhasha which
introduced the terms like VyAvahArika, PrAtibhAsika, etc. for convenience.
So we cannot expect earlier authors like PrakAshAnanda to use the same
terms. We have to understand them through the common examples mentioned,
like the snake-rope, silver-nacre, man-pillar, mirage-desert, etc. The
Vedanta Paribhasha which is standard Advaitic text for all beginners in
Advaita identifies these examples of snake-rope, silver-nacre, etc as
PratibhAsika satya and that should be sufficient for us to infer what
PrakAshAnanda means when he uses the same examples. And as far as advaitins
are concerned, there is universal agreement about what the terms
prAtibhAsika and vyAvaharika satya, snake-rope, silver-nacre mean. There is
no need to bring in non-advaita schools into the discussion, because it is
beyond the scope of the present discussion on PrakAshAnanda, who has been
singled out from other advaitins.

It is also wrong to keep insisting as you have done that PrakAshanda says
the world is tuccha without giving specific references from his own text
and without mentioning the context.

Let me end with a direct quote from PrakAshAnanda's VSM.
न च त्रिविधसत्त्वाभ्युपगमविरोधः सर्वस्य द्वैतस्य प्रातीतिकसत्त्वमपरित्यज्य
तैर्भ्रान्तसन्तोषमात्रस्य कृतत्वात् प्रातीतिकत्वेऽपि प्रपञ्चस्य
भ्रान्तबुद्धिसिद्धौ आन्तरवैषम्यमाश्रित्य व्यावहारिकसत्त्वाभिधानाविरोधात्
(Page 28, VSM with English translation by Venis).
Note the use of the words  "प्रातीतिकसत्त्व" and "व्यावहारिकसत्त्व" in
describing the world of duality. PrakAshAnanda has correctly identified the
world as prAtibhAsika sattva(satya), only he prefers the word
"prAtItikasattva". As Venis, the translator says, the vyAvahArika satya
(practical reality) was introduced to "satisfy the deluded vulgar." In
essence, the (waking) world is only prAtibhAsika or prAtItika, like the
dream world.


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