[Advaita-l] Rope-Snake Analogy in Adhyatma Ramayana

Venkatraghavan S agnimile at gmail.com
Thu Feb 23 07:35:22 EST 2017

The presence and absence of a thing can only be known by pramANa.

So, just like we are able to know the presence of a thing and its absence
in a desha through pramANa (pot and its absence in the same place at
different times), and know the presence and absence of a thing in the same
kAla through pramANa (when the pot is present here, it is not present
elsewhere), it is through pramANa bala alone that the knowledge of the
presence and absence of a thing in the same deSha and same kAla is possible.

shruti pramANa, through neha nAnAsti kinchana is saying that the world does
not exist in all three periods of time, but such a world is available for
pratyaksha pramANa here and now. Thus, both knowledge of the presence and
absence of a thing in the same place and time is certainly possible.

If it is asked how can one pramANa reveal presence and another reveal the
same thing's absence? Well, the presence of a thing is always known through
one pramANa (pratyaksha) and the absence of a thing is always known through
another pramANA (anupalabdhi). The same pramANA can never reveal both
presence and absence, so this is not a defect.

If it is then asked, how can two pramANas contradict each other, the reply
would be: there is no contradiction in this case. All pratyaksha pramANA is
generating is jnAna of a vastu - the conclusion that there must therefore
be an object corresponding to jnAna is a mental construct. In the case of
jagat, when shruti says neha nAnAsti kinchana, it is denying the existence
of such a corresponding object - therefore the denial is of the mental
construct, not of the appearance of the thing. Hence there is no

If the question is how can pratyaksha pramANa generate the jnAna of
something that doesn't exist, we say it does happen in some cases, e.g.
shukti rajatam.

If it is argued that shukti rajatam disappears after shukti jnAna, but the
world does not after brahma jnAna, the answer is that it is possible for
the pratIti to continue even after adhishThAna jnAna, e.g. sugar tastes
bitter to a sick person - even though the person has the bAdha jnAna that
sugar is not bitter, his experience of bitterness continues until the
underlying cause for the bitterness is resolved. Similarly the world
continues to appear to the jnAni until the avidyA leSha has been resolved.


On Wed, Feb 22, 2017 at 10:30 AM, Bhaskar YR via Advaita-l <
advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:

> because Knowledge and Ignorance are mutually exclusive and doesn’t stay
> together.
> praNAms
> Hare Krishna
> Shankara too says same as above somewhere in sUtra bhAshya.  It is because
> of this mutual exclusivity it is hard to paste the lesha of avidyA to the
> paramArtha jnAni.  If the traces of avidyA are there in the jnAni, to that
> extent the vidyA has to be absent since two different things cannot occupy
> the same place at same time :-)
> Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!
> bhaskar
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