[Advaita-l] Advaita and Madhyamika Buddhism

Venkatraghavan S agnimile at gmail.com
Sun Sep 18 08:46:11 CDT 2016

Namaste Praveenji,

On 18 Sep 2016 1:47 p.m., "Praveen R. Bhat" <bhatpraveen at gmail.com> wrote:
> Doesn't this sound more like our definition of सदसद्भ्याम् अनिर्वचनीया
माया than ब्रह्म?! Since you clarify that the Buddhist definition of
existence is different, still I think Madhyamika calls it a dependent

I initially thought too, but I think what they are saying is that shUnya is
anirvachanIyam - ie no statement can be made of it which is ultimately true.
They say that everything is ultimately empty, meaning nothing can be said
of anything. Which is what I perceive to be the problem of this system.

> I think the crucial difference may be in the fact that "no denial of the
self"  is a lot different from "affirmation of the self". Two Shruti
statements come to mind, one being असन्नेव स भवति and अस्तीत्येव
उपलब्धव्यः। Even for परोक्षज्ञान, affirmation/conviction that there is an
existent entity beyond time and space is necessary.

I agree. However I am not trying to compare Madhayamaka Buddhism with
Advaita. Only wondering if that school has been adequately considered and
rebutted in advaita. The issue, as I understand it, with Nagarjunas
position is that no statement can be made about anything which is
ultimately true - even Buddhist statements are not ultimately true.

That being the case nothing can be said about a system which says nothing,
perhaps explaining the minimalist treatment of mAdhyamaka in advaita.


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