[Advaita-l] Debunking Drishti-Srishti Vada and Eka Jiva Vada - part 1
kumaraditya22 at yahoo.com
Sun Jul 16 00:57:30 EDT 2017
Role of Ishwara in DSV and SDV
Ishwara can be loosely translated as the lord, one has a lordship, one who lords over, one who subjugates. Suppose I own a pet, then I become the lord of my pet. My pet is subservient to me. One who is powerful(shakti) lords over others, like a King. But eventually even Kings will get frail, old and die. So they are not ultimate lords. The Devatas or deities are lords when compared to humans. They can decide our fate, grant boons etc. But then again, there will be a lord among the deities as well. So the ultimate lord is one who creates, sustains and destroys.
When we speak of Vishnu or Shiva, we say they are Ishwaras because their capability is very high. The scriptures eulogise them like- their intentions are never baffled etc. There is a possibility to think that the gods are merely allegories or stories for children. But in Gita, Krishna speaks of Aho ratra, one day and night of Brahma. So this suggests that, it is not merely fanciful creation but just like there is this world, there are other worlds until Brahma loka. SDV can explain that Brahma creates the entirety of the worlds. After a span of kalpa everything will go into passive state and again creation starts. There is no inconsistency here wrt Vedantic doctrine of Brahman. In the sense, we can accommodate easily the existence of Brahma and attribute creation etc to him. This is also consistent with the concept of Ishwara where lord is highly capable.
Now we can retain only the fact that Ishwara is highly capable, is subjugator of all beings etc and discard the notion of names and forms attached to it. What we get is the 'Prajna', that is the fourth state 'Turiya' as mentioned by Gaudapada. Please note that Gaudapada stresses, 'that is the lord' etc while describing it. So we have a very consistent philosophy at hand where Ishwara transits from Saguna form to nirguna.
Concept of Ishwara in Buddhism
In Buddhism, we have to take note that, they worship devas too. Many Buddhist schools are tantric. So they worship gods like Tara etc. All schools of Buddhism accept the existence of Devas. But yet, there is no place for this concept of 'Ishwara' or 'Lordship' in Buddhism. Devas don't have any power or role in Buddhism. They are only a bit advanced in comparison to humans, just like how humans are advanced compared to animals and birds. There is no connection between para and apara forms as there is no Ishwara. Hence also it is called Nastik or nihilistic.
Fate of Ishwara in DSV
DSV follows the same path of Buddhism. There is practically no saguna brahman or ishwara. It sits in denial of every single concept. When we say perception is itself creation, there is no explanation given as to how it may be so. It claims to be speaking from the absolute position but denies any distinction between absolute and relative. So it is self-contradicting. How can we determine absolute position without a relative one. Absolute position in relation to what? The explanation given by Prakasananda for perception=creation is same as Buddhit idealism. But various such positions have been refuted by Shankara and his followers.
Is DSV esoteric or self-contradicting?
The charge that DSV can be understood only by advanced aspirants is wrong because understanding the philosophy/concepts is one thing and realising it is another. Many say Advaita is esoteric, very rare for people to accept it. But we all know Advaita is the most popular school of Indian thought even to this day. However, it is esoteric as in not many people can realise the Atman. But the philosophy itself is understood by all class of aspirants. The method of learning and mastering it is same as any other subject. But the problem with DSV is that, the philosophy itself does not add up. It is inconsistent in various ways.
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