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

Bhaskar YR bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com
Tue Feb 28 06:40:24 EST 2017

praNAms Sri Venkatraghavan prabhuji
Hare Krishna

I am assuming that you are addressing by concerns about simultaneous existence of jnAnAjnAna on the same vishaya in a same person.  And choosing the recourse in pramANa to prove that it can be possible.  If your below mail  is not intended for that purpose, then you may kindly ignore my observations on your post, since we have already done and dusted this pramANa vichAra in jagan mithyatva discussion itself and agreed to disagree :-)  

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

>  Yes, agreed prabhuji.

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.

>  Yes, so far I think you are talking about the 'bala' of pratyaksha pramANa.  Fine, I am with you prabhuji.  

shruti pramANa, through neha nAnAsti kinchana is saying that the world does not exist in all three periods of time, 

>  where does the shruti exquisitely denies the existence of world in all the three periods of time??  On the other hand, shruti showing this jagat and telling us, idam sarvaM yadayAtmA, sarvaM khalvidaM brahma, brahmaivedaM vishvaM, satyanchAnrutancha satyamabhavat, yadidaM kiMcha etc.  So, shruti which tells that brahman is nirvishesha, nirvikAra, neha nAnAsti kiMchana etc. telling us that there exists nothing here apart from brahman.  And bhAshyakAra to reiterate this point clarifies, like cause, effect too trishu kAleshu existing since there is no independent existence possible for the jagat apart from brahman.  So shruti pramANa says what you are looking at kArya as jagat is nothing but kAraNa and jagat on its own (which is not possible anyway) is like gandharva nagari samatvAt, svapna nagari samatvaat,  mareechyudaka etc. Sri SSS somewhere says : kAryavannu ondu svatantra vastuvendu nodidAga adakke yaavude reetiya astitvavilla...aadare ade karyavannu adara kaaraNada drushti yinda nodidaaga 'adu' (jagattu) brahmavallade berenu all..( when the kArya has been see as an independent there is no existence for it whatsoever, but when that SAME kArya has been witnessed as its kAraNa, that kArya is nothing but brahman.  No need to mention that Sri SSS's statement is based on bhAshyakAra's clarification : sarvaM cha nAmarUpAdi sadAtmanaiva satyaM vikArajAtaM 'svatastu' anrutameva.  

but such a world is available for pratyaksha pramANa here and now. 

>  Yes and that which established by pratyaksha pramANa cannot be overridden by another pramANA i.e. shabda pramANa.  And one particular pramANa does not have the capacity to prove / disprove the prama which has been well established by another pramANa.  For the shAstra pramANa vishaya is brahmaikatvaM which should not come in the way of the pratyaksha pramANa AdhArita vishaya.  The scope of these two pramANA-s are entirely different one cannot supersede the other.  And one pramANa should/does not go against other pramANa na cha pramANaM pramANAtareNa virudhyate!!  How and why??  pramANAntarA vishayaM eva hi pramANAntaraM jnApayati.  So, it is illogical practice to use one pramANA to disprove the vishaya of another pramANa.  

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. 

>  this is at the best vijnAna vAda IMO.  If this jagat is mere mental construct of an individual then we are violating the 'vedAnta maryAda'.  And more over it is otherway of saying :  nirvikAra brahman is the adhishtAnaM for the jeeva's mental construct 'jagat'.  There is no sAdrushya between 'kalpita jneya' and adhishtAnaM here.  If that is the case, I would have constructed rajata on rajju and sarpa on shukti :-) 

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 contradiction.

>  what exactly is the mental construct here??  The mental construct here is asarvatvaM, abrahmatvaM of jagat / nAma this is called avidyA kalpita drushti.  The dawn of jnana would reveal the fact that that which has been wrongly looked at as asarvaM, apUrNaM, abrahmaM is nothing but pUrNaM, sarvaM and brahma mayaM.  Holding this samyaK drushti or paripUrNa drushti only shruti makes the declarations like : sarvaM khalvidaM brahma, right, left, top, bottom everwhere brahman only..bhAshyakAra clarifies this further : kAryAkArOpi ( note the emphasis here on kAryAkAra) kAraNasya Atmabhuta eva anAtmabhUtasya anArabhyatvAt.  kAryAkAra is the brahma Shakti it is not mere mundane mental construct of the conditioned jeeva.  

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 something does not exist, why I only get the (wrong) knowledge of rajata why I don’t get the (wrong) knowledge of sarpa in place of shukti??  Why I don’t see the rajataM in place of rajju??  After all both (wrong) knowledges of rajata and sarpa my own mental construction only without depending on anything existing outside i.e. shukti and rajju....If the shukti and rajju themselves mere construction of mind, that mind have all the right to construct sarpa in place of shukti, rajata in place of rajju without bothering about sAdrushyaM...is it not??  

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.

>  I am afraid this is wrong example.  Sugar is bitter to the avidyAvanta (sick person) due to his absence of real knowledge of 'sugar' whereas sugar is sweet for the vidyAvanta ( a healthy person) who knows the real nature of sugar i.e. sweet.  How a jnAni sees the world?? Is he going to see this jagat is mithya and as a brahman I am satya and am the sAkshi who is witnessing this mithyA jagat??  Na, for the paramArtha jnAni there is nothing called 'anAtma' vastu, if at all he sees anything apart from HIM (even to the extent of tip of hair vAlAgramapi) he is avidyAvanta only not paramArtha jnAni.    Yattu sarvAtmabhAvAt arvAk vAlAgramAtramapi anyatvena drushyate nAhamasmeeti tadavasthA avidyA...jnAni is anna, annaada, shlokakarta as well...he does not look at the things like anna etc. as mithyA it is satya only on par with annAda and shlOkakarta.  

>  And it is not avidyA lesha due to which he continues to see jagat OTOH he continues to see jagat as brahman on account of his 'paripUrNa' vidyA / paramArtha jnana.

As I said above, we have discussed these same old topics numerous times earlier...if your intention is not to re-kindle this issue you are welcome to ignore my 'socalled' clarification from MY perspective :-)

Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!

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