[Advaita-l] vedAntins at the time of shankara

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Sun Sep 17 22:16:05 EDT 2017

On Sun, Sep 17, 2017 at 9:41 PM, Praveen R. Bhat via Advaita-l <
advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:

> ​​Namaste,
> From our own list webpage:
> http://www.advaita-vedanta.org/avhp/pre-sankara.html
> //Quote
> To be sure, there were also pre-Sankaran representatives of non-advaita
> vedAnta traditions, many of whom seem to have been *bhedAbheda-vAdins* of
> one kind or the other - proponents of a doctrine of identity-in-difference.
> Chief among them are the names of auDulomi, Asmarathya (both mentioned in
> the brahmasUtras), bhartRprapanca, brahmadatta, bhartRmitra and bodhAyana.
> //Unquote
> With that in the background, what is important​ to note though is that just
> as Bhashyakara dismisses the non-Vedanta traditions as they end in duality,
> he also dismisses some Advaita-ending schools of thought since jnAnena
> muktiH is compromised in them. samucchaya- or upAsana-prApyamuktiH is
> anityA and so, siddAntaviruddhaH.

Dear Praveen ji,

In the blog of mine that was cited in this thread, I had quoted a passage
from Shankara:

In the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad 2.1.20 bhashyam Shankaracharya makes a very
reaching statement:

// sarvopaniShatsu hi vijnAnAtmanaH paramAtmaikatva-pratyayo vidhIyata
ityavipratipattiH sarveShAmupaniShadvAdinAm. //

[That `All the Upanishads teach the idea of unity/identity of the Supreme
and the individual Atman’ is an undisputed understanding of all the
adherents of
the Upanishads.]

>From this we come to know that during / prior to Shankaracharya’s time there
were no vedAntic bhedavAdins, dualists, of any shade basing their systems on
the Upanishads.

A question might arise on the plural Shankara has used in the
`sarveShAmupaniShadvAdinAm’ [`All the adherents of the Upanishads’]. Who are
these several adherents of the VedAnta? To this we reply: In the bhAShyam on
various Upanishads/brahma sutra/Bh.GitA Shankara has dealt with several
such as BhartRuprapancha, Ashmarathya, aUDulomi etc. who are ultimately
advaitins but on certain aspects they differ with the mainstream Advaita
Vedanta as taught by GaudapAda –Shankara/Veda vyasa. They could be those who
hold the view: (1) bheda in bandha is satyam and abheda in mokSha is satyam
(BSB 2.1.14). (2) Even after attaining the Advaitic sAkShAtkAra
the jnAni/jIva is required by the shruti to perform his ordained duties
till the
fall of the body. These types have been alluded to and refuted by Shankara
the bhAShyas.

warm regards


> However, jnAnena avidyAnivRttiH and thereby advaitamuktiH is not
> compromised by any sub-commentators of bhAShya, and therefore, they are
> mere prakriyAbhedas and not tattvabhedas. This fact cannot be stressed
> enough.
> ​gurupAdukAbhyAm
> ,
> --Praveen R. Bhat
> /* येनेदं सर्वं विजानाति, तं केन विजानीयात्। Through what should one know
> That owing to which all this is known! [Br.Up. 4.5.15] */
> On Sun, Sep 17, 2017 at 9:13 PM, Praveen R. Bhat <bhatpraveen at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > Namaste Subbuji,
> >
> > ​
> > On Sun, Sep 17, 2017 at 3:19 PM, V Subrahmanian via Advaita-l <
> > advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:
> >
> >> There is a difference. Shankara has not claimed that he is refuting
> >> pre-existing Bhāṣyas on the Brahmasutra as others have done. All that he
> >> is
> >> claiming is that the monist is the only representative of the
> Upanishadic
> >> mata and all his opponents are dualists.  We find the proof of this in
> his
> >> refutation of the various schools such as the sankhya, yoga,
> vaisheshika,
> >> bauddha, jaina, pancharatra, pashupata, mimamsa, charvaka..  That gives
> us
> >> an idea that there were no Vedantic schools that Shankara was opposed
> to.
> >>
> >
> > Bhashyakara was not opposed to the final conclusion of ​Vrttikara's
> > Bhedabheda that Atman is brahman, but that upAsana is needed for the same
> > even after jnAnotpatti. This is elaborately dismissed in the bhAShya
> under
> > tattu samanvayAt, considering all possible upAsanA options.
> >
> > ​
> > ​
> > Kind rgds,
> > --Praveen R. Bhat
> > /* येनेदं सर्वं विजानाति, तं केन विजानीयात्। Through what should one know
> > That owing to which all this is known! [Br.Up. 4.5.15] */
> >
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