[Advaita-l] Advaita Siddhi series 024 - drishyatva hetu upapattih (part 3)

Venkatraghavan S agnimile at gmail.com
Mon Jan 15 05:08:41 EST 2018


We are examining the hetu of drishyatva (knowability) in the mithyAtva
anumAna. The nyAyAmritakAra had looked at six possible meanings of
knowability and in each case had identified certain defects in them. The
six alternatives were:
1) वृत्तिव्याप्यत्वं  - being revealed by a vritti (thought), or
2) फलव्याप्यत्वं वा - being revealed by consciousness reflected / delimited
by a vritti, or
3) साधारणं वा - that which is common to both, or
4) कदाचित् कथंचिच्चिविषयत्वम् वा - being the object of consciousness in
some way at some time, or
5) स्वव्यवहारे स्वातिरिक्त संविदन्तरापेक्षानियतिर्वा - the requirement, as
a rule, of another conscious entity for its own vyavahAra, or
6) अस्वप्रकाशं वा - not being self-evident.

Of these, apart from option 2 (revealed by phala), all other options were
acceptable definitions for knowability according to the siddhikAra. We had
looked at the defence of vritti vyApyatva as an acceptable definition  -
both from the standpoint of bhAmati, and the vivaraNa. A few other
variations within vritti vyApyatvam were also looked at. Now we will take
a  look at options 3 to 6.

****** Option 3 - Knowability as the object of either a vritti or
एतेन वृत्तिव्याप्यफलव्याप्ययो: साधारणं व्यवहारप्रयोजकविषयत्वरूपं
दृश्यत्वमपि हेतु:, ब्रह्मणि तुच्छे च व्यभिचारपरिहारोपायस्य उक्तत्वात् |
Therefore (as vritti vyApyatva has been proved to be an acceptable
definition of drishyatva), knowability as the objectification of a thing
that leads to worldly activity common to both revelation by vritti or by
phala is also acceptable. The means for the removal of vyabhichAra in
brahman and asat have been described already.

******** Option 4 - Knowability as some form of objectification by
यद्वा दृश्यत्वं चिद्विषयत्वम् | Alternatively, knowability is some form of
objectification by consciousness (via a vritti). The connection between
consciousness and its object can be in a few ways (this will be studied
elaborately in the pratikarma vyavasthA chapter). Some are outlined here:
1) What a pot is seen, the connection between consciousness is through the
reflection of consciousness in a vritti that takes the AkAra of the pot.
2) When the memory of the pot is recollected, the connection between the
pot and consciousness is by means of paroksha vritti, non-perceptual
3) With regards to objects beyond sensory perception, such as dharma /
adharma, the connection is by means of an inferential (non-perceptual)
4) With regards to objects of the mind such as happiness, sadness etc (ie
those that are known to the sAkshi), it is a direct connection.

 तच्च यथाकिञ्चित् चित्संबंधित्वरूपम् हेतु: | That objectification is some
form of connection with consciousness.

तच्च न चैतन्ये, अभेदे भेदनान्तरीयकस्य सम्बन्धस्य अभावात् | Such a
connection cannot exist with consciousness itself because consciousness
cannot be connected to itself. As the connection of anything is (always)
with something else, connection with oneself is not possible.

अतो न व्यभिचार: | Therefore there is no vyabhichAra with regard to Brahman.

तुच्छे च व्यभिचार: परिहरणीय: | The defect of vyabhichAra for asat has to be
remedied by pointing out that any connection with consciousness can exist
only with things that exist.

**** Option 5 - Knowability as the requirement of another consciousness for
the object's activities****
यद्वा स्वव्यवहारे स्वातिरिक्तसंविदपेक्षानियतिरूपं दृश्यत्वं हेतु: |
Alternatively, knowability as the hetu can be the requirement, as a rule,
of a conscious entity apart from itself for its own vyavahAra.

vyavahAra is classified into four categories by the vivaraNAchArya:
a) abhijnA - to know something
b) abhivadanam - to talk about it
c) arthakriya - to get some benefit from it
d) upAdAnAm - to obtain it

Each of these activities involving the object presupposes the requirement
of a consciousness different from itself.

संविच्छब्देन विषयाभिव्यक्तं वा वृत्त्यभिव्यक्तं वा शुद्धं वा
चैतन्यमात्रमभिप्रेतम् | By the word 'consciousenss', the following are
meant - either consciousness that reveals the object, or consciousness that
illumines the thought, or pure consciousness.

Consciousness that illumines vritti  - To know a pot, there is a
requirement for a consciousness illuminating the vritti that has the AkAra
of the pot.
Consciousness that reveals the object - To remove the veil of ignorance
(avdiyA AvaraNa) from an object, there is the requirement for a
consciousness that is manifest in the form of the object
Pure consciousness - to know one's own mental states such as happiness,
sadness etc., there is the expectation of the witness, the sAkshi.

तथाच घटादौ नित्यातीन्द्रिये साक्षिभास्ये च सर्वोऽपि व्यवहारात्
स्वातिरिक्तसंवित्सापेक्ष इति नासिद्धि: | In (the case of the perception of)
a pot, or for objects that are forever beyond sensory perception, or for
objects directly illumined by consciousness, that is, the occurrence of any
activity with respect to such objects requires a consciousness apart from
those objects themselves. Therefore, no vyavahAra is left out, and asiddhi,
or the inapplicability of mithyAtva to any aspect of the paksha is ruled

व्यवहारश्च स्फुरणाभिवदनादिसाधारण: | vyavahAra refers to the knowledge of
something as existing, talking about it to others, etc. The four kinds of
vyavahAra were spoken of earlier.

तत्र ब्रह्मण: स्फुरणरूपे व्यवहारे नित्यसिद्धे स्वातिरिक्तसंविदपेक्षा
नास्तीति नियतिपदेन व्यभिचारवारणम् | As the knowledge of the existence of
Brahman is eternally known, there is no requirement for another
consciousness to know it - Thus by the use of the word 'niyati' = rule,
there is no vyabhichAra.

स्वगोचरयावद्व्यवहारे स्वातिरिक्तसंविदपेक्षायां पर्यवसानात् | Therefore, for
all vyavahAras involving a thing other than itself, there is the
requirement for a consciousness apart from it.

***********Option 6 - Knowability as not being self-evident *********

अत एवास्वप्रकाशत्वरूपं दृश्यत्वमपि हेतु: | Therefore, knowability as the
hetu can mean not being self-evident
स्वप्रकाशत्वं हि स्वापरोक्षत्वे स्वातिरिक्तानपेक्षत्वम् | where being
self-evident means not requiring anything else to directly know it.
'यत्साक्षादपरोक्षाद्ब्रह्म' इति श्रुते: | There is no vyabhichAra with
respect to Brahman as the shruti says: "Brahman, which is directly known
(by itself)".
तथाचान्यानधीनापरोक्षत्वं पर्यवस्यति | Here, the meaning of aparokshatvam,
or being directly known, is not being dependent on anything else for
knowing it.
तन्निरूपितभेदवत्त्वं हेतु: | Difference from such an aparokshatvam is the
hetu of knowability.
तच्च नित्यपरोक्षे अन्याधीनापरोक्षे च घटादावस्तीति नासिद्धि: | Therefore, as
such a knowability exists for objects such as pots, etc - ie they are ever
mediate (ie different from oneself) and require another consciousness for
their perception - the inapplicability of the sAdhya to any element of the
paksha, or asiddhi, is absent.

The pUrvapakshi may argue that even if a real difference does not exist
within Brahman, an imagined difference may exist. Such a difference is
mithyA, but requires Brahman for its cognisance (ie it is not
self-luminous). As such an imagined difference is part of Brahman, there is
vyabhichAra within Brahman. To this the siddhikAra says:

न च ब्रह्मणोऽपि ब्रह्मप्रतियोगिककाल्पनिकभेदवत्त्वात्तत्र व्यभिचार:,
अकल्पितभेदस्य क्वाप्यसिद्धत्वादिति वाच्यम् ; Do not argue thus: "There
could be an imagined difference which has Brahman as its counterpositive.
This leads to vyabhichAra. For unless imagined, there can be no difference
in Brahman." The pUrvapakshi is arguing that the jIva knows Brahman through
the akhaNDAkAra vritti, therefore Brahman is not self-luminous. Such an
argument is untenable because:

तद्भेदस्यान्यानधीनापरोक्षत्वरूपधर्मानिरूपितत्वात् |
जीवत्वेश्वरत्वादिरूपस्यान्यधर्मस्य तन्निरूपकत्वात् | Such differences are
not due to the presence or absence of self-evidence, but because of other
attributes. Attributes such as jIvatva, Ishvaratva etc are the causes of
the imagined differences within Brahman - which are themselves imagined.

एवंचावेद्यत्वे सत्यपरोक्षव्यवहारयोग्यत्वाभावरूपं दृश्यत्वमपि हेतु: | In the
same way, knowability can also be defined as the absence of
self-luminosity, where self-luminosity is the characteristic of being not
knowable as an object, but which happens to be suitable for direct

न च फलव्याप्यत्वाभावविशिष्टं यदपरोक्षव्यवहारयोग्यत्वम् तस्य
ब्रह्मणीवाविद्यान्तःकरणादौ शुक्तिरूप्यादौ च सत्त्वेन असिद्धिसाधनवैकल्ये इति
वाच्यम् ;
Do not argue thus - "Brahman is not revealed by phala (consciousness
reflected in thought), but is capable of being directly perceived.
Similarly, ignorance (avidyA), the mind (antahkaraNam), shell-silver
(shuktirUpyam) etc. also are not revealed by phala, but are capable of
being directly perceived. Therefore there is asiddhi and sAdhana vaikalya. "

The pUrvapakshi is arguing that the definition of self luminosity is the
absence of revelation by phala, while being suitable for direct perception.
avidyA is not known by phala, but by the sAkshi. It is directly perceived.
Similarly the mind and shell-silver. Therefore, the definition of
self-luminosity applies to all of them. The absence of self-luminosity is
mithyA. Therefore these are not mithyA. There are two problems with this -
First, something that ought to be mithyA is not, and therefore asiddhi is
present. Second, the very example for mithyAtva, shell-silver, is not
mithyA. Thus there is sAdhana vaikalya.

Such an argument is not correct, because that is not the definition of
self-luminosity. The term अपरोक्षव्यवहारयोग्यत्वं needs to be understood
अज्ञाननिवर्तकवृत्तिविषयत्वयोग्यत्वस्य अपरोक्षव्यवहारयोग्यत्वपदेन
विवक्षितत्वात् | The intended meaning of the term "being suitable for
direct perception", is the capability of something to be an object of a
vritti that removes ignorance.

To explain: The shell-silver was created at the time of its perception,
therefore it is not the object of a vritti that removes shell-ignorance.
The vritti that removes shell-ignorance is the knowledge of the shell. The
object of such a vritti is shell, not shell-ignorance. Similarly the vritti
that removes avidyA and antahkaraNam is the akhaNDAkAra vritti, which we
earlier said had only Brahman as the object, not avidyA (उपाध्यविषयकत्वे

तस्य चाविद्यादौ शुक्तिरूप्यादौ चासत्त्वान्नासिद्धिसाधनवैकल्ये | As
ignorance, the mind and shell-silver are all not suitable for direct
perception (ie they are not objects of a vritti that removes ignorance),
sAdhana vaikalyam and asiddhi are not present.

यथाच घटादे: फलव्यायत्वं तथाग्रे वक्ष्याम: | The manner in which the objects
of the world such as pots, etc. are revealed by the phala will be discussed
at a later stage (in the pratikarma vyavasthA chapter).

Finally, the siddhikAra considers the ontology of avidyA nivritti as
postulated by AnandabodhAchArya. According to him, avidyA nivritti is not
sat, because if it was, then it would be indestructible. If it is asat, it
would not be known. It cannot be sadasat as that would be a logical
impossibility. It cannot be sadasat vilakshaNa, because avidyA is sadasat
vilakshaNa. So how can avidyA nivritti be sadasat vilakshaNa? Therefore,
Anandabodha proposes that avidyA nivritti be classified into a special
fifth category.

The siddhikAra considers this possibility.

अविद्यानिवृत्ते पञ्चमप्रकारत्वाभ्युपगमपक्षे तत्र
व्यभिचारवारणायाज्ञानकालवृत्तित्वं हेतुविशेषणं देयम् | If avidyA nivritti is
taken as the fifth category, there would be vyabhichAra. The hetu of non
self-luminosity would be present, but the sAdhya of mithyAtva would not (as
avidyA nivritti is in a category different from mithyA). To remove this,
the qualifier, "existing contemporaneously with ignorance" should be added
to the definition.

तेनैव तुच्छेऽपि न व्यभिचार: | By doing so, asat also is automatically
excluded, because asat does not exist at any time, let alone
contemporaneously with ignorance.

एवमेव सर्वेषु हेतुषु व्यभिचारपरिहाराय यतनीयम् | The remedy of any
vyabhichAra for any other hetu should be done in a similar manner.

सद्विविक्तत्वमात्रे तु साध्ये तुच्छे पञ्चमप्रकाराविद्यानिवृत्तौ च न
व्यभिचारगन्धोऽपीति सर्वमवदातम् ||  Therefore, when taking the sAdhya to be
that which is different from the real, there is no trace of vyabhichAra in
either the case of asat and avidyA nivritti as a fifth category.

This concludes the discussion on the hetu of drishyatvam, or knowability.


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