[Advaita-l] Advaita Siddhi series 005 - pakshatAvacChedaka vichAra: (part 2)

Venkatraghavan S agnimile at gmail.com
Mon Sep 4 10:04:24 EDT 2017

See part 1 here:  <http://www.advaitasiddhi.com/blog/paricCheda>http://www.

There are two kinds of anumiti -
1) *pakshatA avacChedakam sAmAnadhikaraNyeNa anumiti* - Here, the
hypothesis is covering only a specific instance of the paksha and in that
instance, the sAdhya is claimed to be present. When we say the mountain is
on fire, we are not interested in proving that every mountain is on fire,
only one specific mountain.
2) *pakshatA avacchedakA avacchedena anumiti* - Here, the hypothesis is
covering every instance of the paksha, and in every instance, the sAdhya is
claimed to be existing. So for example, if the claim is all men are mortal,
our intention is to say that every man is mortal, not just one specific

Should sAmAnAdhikaraNyena anumiti be used or should avacchedakA avacchedana
anumiti be used in the vipratipatti vAkya here? To prove advaita siddhAnta,
avacchedakA avacchedana anumiti is needed. Every instance of the paksha
should be proved as mithyA. However, in a vAda, if the opponent is saying
that nothing in the paksha is mithyA, to disprove such an opponent, it is
sufficient for the advaitin to prove just one item in the paksha is mithyA
(and vice versa). In such a scenario, sAmAnyAdhikaryeNa anumiti is

1) In the case of avacchedakA avacchedena anumiti, siddha sAdhana is not a
problem. That is, when the advaitin wants to prove that everything apart
from Brahman and asat is mithyA, then calling prAtibhAsika as mithyA is not
a problem. So the vipratipatti vAkya can just have two qualifiers -
सत्त्वेन प्रतीत्यर्हं चिद्भिन्नं मिथ्या न वा.
2) In the case of sAmAnAdhikaraNyena anumiti, bAdham is not a problem, but
siddha sAdhana is a problem. That is, when the advaitin wants to prove only
certain things are mithyA, and if the pUrvapakshi happens to know that
particular thing is mithyA already,  that ends the enquiry. Therefore, in
that scenario, because the pUrvapakshi already knows that prAtibhAsika is
mithyA, the advaitin will only say ब्रह्मप्रमातिरिक्ताबाध्यत्वे सति मिथ्या
न वा.
3) However, some logicians hold that all the three visheshaNas, qualifiers,
need to be added to the vipratipatti vAkya- ब्रह्मप्रमातिरिक्ताबाध्यत्वे
सति सत्त्वेन प्रतीत्यर्हं चिद्भिन्नं मिथ्या न वा.

The siddhikAra continues:
अत्र च पक्षतावच्छेदकसामानाधिकरण्येन साद्ध्यसिद्धेरुद्देश्यत्वात् पक्षैकदेशे
साद्ध्यसिद्धावापि सिद्धसाधनतेति मते शुक्तिरूप्ये सिद्धसाधनवारणाय
ब्रह्मज्ञानेतराबाद्ध्यत्वं पक्षविशेषणम् । When pakshatA avacChedaka
sAmAnAdhikaraNya anumiti is used, ie when the aim of the debate is to prove
that a specific species within the paksha contains the sAdhya,  the charge
of siddha sAdhana accrues from the prior knowledge of some instance of that
species containing the sAdhya. To remedy this, we exclude all species
within the paksha which already contain the sAdhya. Therefore, as we want
to prove the mithyAtva of the world, we exclude instances such as the
shell-silver whose mithyAtva is already known. We do this by adding the
qualifier brahma pramA atirikta abAdhyatvam.

यदि पुनः पक्षतावच्छेदकावच्छेदेनैव साद्ध्यसिद्धेरुद्देश्याः; तदैकदेशे
साद्ध्यसिद्धावापि सिद्धसाधनाभावात् तद्वारकं विशेषणं अनुपादेयम् । however,
where avacchedakA avacchedena anumiti is used, then in that paksha, siddha
sAdhana is not a defect, as every instance of the paksha has to be
demonstrated to contain the sAdhya. Thus no qualifier needs to be added to
remove siddha sAdhana.

इतरविशेषणद्वयं तु तुच्छे ब्रह्मणि च बाधवारणायादरणीयमेव । the other two
qualifiers must be added to remove bAdha in the case of asat (tucCha) and

प्रत्येकं वा विप्रतिपत्तिः वियन्मिथ्या न वा, पृथिवी मिथ्या न वा इति । Now
(in some debates) we may wish to restrict the debate to prove some
particular objects as mithyA, such as the sky is mithyA, earth is mithyA
etc. A vipratipatti vAkya covering those specific pakshas can be used in
such instances. This is called *pratyeka vipratipatti*, specific
introductory sentences.

However, where pratyeka vipratipatti is used, it leads to another defect
called *sandigdha anaikAntikatA *or* sandigdha vyabhichAra.* What is this?

To explain, let us say for example, we want to prove that a specific
object, such as a pot is mithyA, using the hetu of drishyatvam
(knowability). The opponent may argue that knowability exists not just for
the pot, but also for other objects, like a piece of cloth. However,  as
this debate is just about a pot, it has not been determined whether the
cloth is mithyA or not. Therefore, as far as the cloth is concerned, the
hetu, knowability is present, but the sAdhya, mithyAtva is doubtful. This
could potentially be a vyabhichAra
<http://www.advaitasiddhi.com/blog/nyaya-basics-an-aide-memoire> (where the
hetu is present, but the sAdhya is not). There is a doubt whether
vyabhichAra is present or not. A similar doubt exists for the subject of
the debate, the pot. This doubtful vyabhichAra is a defect called sandigdha
vyabhichAra or sandigdha anaikAntikatA. anaikAntikatA is a synonym for
vyabhichAra. This doubt is a defect as it hinders the generation of certain

To summarise, sandigdha vyabhichAra occurs if there is a doubt regarding
either (or both) a) the hetu being present, or b) sAdhya being absent.

The advaitin wants to prove space is mithyA. He says AkAsha: mithyA,
drishyatvAt, shukti rUpyavat. The opponent shows that hetu of drishyatvam
is present in other objects, and because we are not debating the mithyAtva
of those objects, it is unclear whether those objects are mithyA or not.
Therefore, the sAdhya is doubtful, but the hetu is present. Hence there is
the sandigdha anaikAntikatA defect.

To this, the siddhikAra says:
एवं वियदादेः प्रत्येकंपक्षत्वे अपि न घटादौ संदिग्धानैकान्तिकता ।  Not so.
This defect called sandigdhAnaikAntikatA (or sandigdha vyabhichAra), a
doubtful vyabhichAra in the case of pots etc is not present when the
argument is specifically restricted to the space being mithyA. Why?

पक्षसमत्वात् घटादेः because all other objects such as the  pot etc belong
to the same class as the paksha of this debate.

The siddhikAra by using just these two words is making quite a powerful
argument. If sandigdha vyabhichAra is necessarily present whenever the
sAdhya is in doubt, then it can be argued to be present in all inference.
For example, in the inference of fire in the mountain, when the smoke is
seen, the presence of the hetu is established, but before the inference
arises, there is a doubt whether the mountain is on fire or not. If it is
already known that the sAdhya is present in the paksha, then there is no
requirement for inference at all. Therefore, a doubt regarding the presence
of the sAdhya is true for all inference, as a consequence, every inference
can be said to be afflicted with the sandigdha vyabhichAra defect.

To remedy this, the tattvachintAmaNikAra, GangeSa upAdhyAya, had said न हि
पक्षे पक्षसमे वा व्यभिचारः. One cannot argue that there is vyabhichAra in a
paksha due to vyabhichAra being present in another instance similar to the

Taking this as his basis, the siddhikAra says that if space is the paksha,
a sandigdha vyabhichAra defect will not arise if the opponent proves that
it exists in another instance like a pot, because the pot and space are
similar pakshas.

तथाहि पक्षे साध्यसंदेहस्यानुगुणत्वात् further, the nature of the paksha is
such that a doubt whether the sAdhya is present or not will always be
present (before the anumAna dispels the doubt).

Ok, when can this sandigdha vyabhichAra defect arise then?

पक्षभिन्न एव तस्य दूषणत्वं वाच्यं । only if this vyabhichAra is proven in a
completely different paksha, can this defect arise

अतएवोक्तं 'साध्याभावनिश्चयवति हेतुसंदेहे एव संदिग्धानैकान्तिकता' इति
Therefore it has been said by Gangesha upAdhyAya, "When there is certainty
about sAdhya's absence, but doubt over the hetu, only then can sandighdha
vyabhichAra defect arise".

The implication of this statement by the chintAmaNikAra is that when the
reverse holds, that is, when there is doubt about the sAdhya's absence but
certainty about the heat's presence, the defect of sandigdha vyabhichAra
will *not* arise.

Earlier we had said that the sandigdha vyabhichAra can arise if either a)
there is doubt about the hetu being present, but certainty about the sAdhya
being absent or b) there is doubt the sAdhya being absent, but certainty
about the hetu being present. Now, we are refining it to say that this can
only arise in the case of the former, and not the latter.

Another question arises. The opponent asks "You said that space is  the
paksha, and pot is paksha samam, a similar class to the paksha. Why is the
pot paksha samam, and not paksha itself? The definition of paksha is
sandgidha sAdhyavAn paksha: - that in which the presence of sAdhya is
doubtful is called paksha. A pot meets this definition".

To this the siddhikAra says: In this instance, I am interested in proving
sAdhya in the space only, not the pot. That is why space was termed paksha,
and pot as paksha samam. However, there is no problem in calling the pot
paksha too.

पक्षत्वं तु साध्यसंदेहत्वं साध्यगोचरसाधकमानाभाववत्वं वा - paksha can be
defined in two ways - one as sAdhya sandehatvam and the other as sAdhya
gochara siddhi abhAva (sAdhakamAna = siddhi). In the former definition, we
define paksha as where the presence of sAdhya is in doubt and in the second
definition we define paksha  as where where certainty about the sAdhya's
presence is absent.

एतच्च घदादिसाधारणम् । This is present in pots etc too.  अत एव तत्रापि
संदिग्धानैकान्तिकत्वं न दोषः।  Thus there also the defect of doubtful
vyabhichAra is not present.

पक्षसमत्वोक्तिस्तु प्रतिज्ञाविषयत्वाभावमात्रेण । Even though the pot is
also paksha, we are calling it pakshasamam and not paksha because the
object of the pratijnA, the hypothesis in this inference is space, and not
the pot.

नच तर्हि प्रतिज्ञाविषयत्वमेव पक्षत्वं; स्वार्थानुमाने तदाभावात् ।  We
cannot define the paksha as the object of a hypothesis in an inference,
because a hypothesis is absent in a svArthAnumAna - where one infers
something for oneself. We had previously seen the difference between
svArthAnumAna and parArthAnumAna here
<http://www.advaitasiddhi.com/blog/nyaya-basics-an-aide-memoire>. There is
no need for verbal expression for svArthAnumAnam. For parArthAnumAnam, we
need to employ the pancha avayava vAkya (the sentence of the five parts, as
outlined in the link) to cause inference to occur in another person. In the
case of svArthAnumAna also, we need a paksha. However there is no pratijnA
or hypothesis. If we define paksha as object of a hypothesis, it will not
cover the case of svArthAnumAna. Thus a definition of paksha would not
cover all cases where the paksha is required.

एवं विप्रतिपत्तौ प्राचां प्रयोगाः | The ancient advaita writers
(AnandabodhAchArya is being referred to here) have thus used three kinds of
anumAna to prove the mithyAtva of vyAvahArika objects.

विमतं मिथ्या दृश्यत्वात् , जडत्वात् , परिच्छिन्नत्वात् , शुक्तिरूप्यवदिति |
Thus the anumAna that is used is "vimatam is mithyA" and three reasons are
given for this  - because of knowability, inertness and finitude, like the
illusive silver seen instead of a shell. What is vimatam?

The group of objects that constitute the paksha, the subject of the
vipratipatti vAkya, or alternatively, the words used in the vipratipatti
vAkya are referred to in shorthand as vimatam.

नावयवेष्वाग्रहः There is a variation amongst different philosophers in  the
number of avayava vAkyas
<http://www.advaitasiddhi.com/blog/nyaya-basics-an-aide-memoire> (pratijnA,
hetu etc.) required for inference. naiyyAyikas say five avayava vAkyas are
required, mImAmsakas require 3 avayava vAkyas. The siddhikAra says that he
is not too concerned over the exact number needed. However many are
required for the other person to understand, we will use that many avayavas.

Now two alternatives will be proposed for the *pakshatA avacChedakam* (ie
the visheShaNas or the factors required to be present in the paksha).

अत्र स्वनियामकनियतया विप्रतिपत्तया लघुभूतया पक्षतावच्छेदो न विरुद्ध: Here,
the doubt generated by the vipratipatti vAkya -
ब्रह्मप्रमातिरिक्ताबाध्यत्वे सति सत्त्वेन प्रतीत्यर्हं चिद्भिन्नं मिथ्या न
वा which can be described in shorthand as विमतं मिथ्या न वा, is the
pakshatA avacChedakam. Thus the first suggestion is that sandeha
viShayatvam is pakshatA avacChedakam.

If the doubt is the pakshatAvacChedakam, this raises a question. A doubt is
ultimately a thought. A thought, by its nature is very brief. The
naiyyAyika says that thoughts last for two kshaNas, moments. Therefore, if
the doubt lasts only for two moments, and that is the pakshatA
avacChedakam, how can enquiry occur after those two moments?

समयबन्धादीना व्यवधानात् तस्य अनुमानकाल असत्त्वे अपि उपलक्षणतया
पक्षतावच्छेदकत्वं Even though doubt is time bound, and despite the fact
that it has ceased to exist at the time of anumAna, it can serve as the
pakshatAvacChedakam as an upalakshaNa.

In shAstra, three mechanisms are posited to uniquely identify an object
from a group.
1) *visheShaNa* - as an adjective that cannot be separated by from the
object. When we want someone to fetch a particular pot from a group of
pots, we say "bring the black pot". The blackness is a unique adjective
that separates the pot that we want from the rest. That blackness and the
pot cannot be separated, so when the pot that we want is brought, its
blackness comes along with it. Such an identifier is called visheShaNa.

2) *upAdhi* - as an adjective that does not belong to the object, but there
is an association with the object which allows the adjective to identify
the object uniquely. When we want someone to bring a particular person from
the next room, we say "bring the person who is seated on the chair". When
the person is brought, the chair does not come along with him, however, it
serves as a basis to uniquely identify a person from a group. Such an
identifier is called upAdhi.

3) *upalakshaNa* - as an adjective that used to be associated with the
object, but is no longer so. When we want to identify a friend's house to
another friend, we sometimes say "do you remember the house that we went
past that had the crow sitting on it? That is X's house". Now, when the
identification happens, the crow has probably flown away, but that
association of the crow with that house was noted in the past, and serves
as a useful identifier. Such an identifier is called upalakshaNa.

The siddhikAra says that the doubt, which has ceased to exist after the two
moments, similarly serves as a pakshatAvacChedakam as an upalakshaNa.

यद्वा विप्रतिपत्तिविषयता अवच्छेदकमेव पक्षतावच्छेदकं | Alternatively, the
three qualifiers ब्रह्मप्रमातिरिक्ताबाध्यत्वे सति सत्त्वेन प्रतीत्यर्हं
चिद्भिन्नं, the subject of the vipratipatti vAkya, can be the pakshatA

प्राचाम् प्रयोगेष्वपि विमतमिति पदं
| Thus the ancient advaitins essentially used the word vimatam as a
shorthand for all the three visheshaNas that were mentioned earlier.


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