[Advaita-l] Names such as 'Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva' are mithyopadhika - Vishnu Puranam
v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Tue Apr 23 03:30:33 EDT 2019
Names such as 'Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva' are mithyopadhika - Vishnu Puranam
In the Vishnu Sahasra Nama bhashya, Shankara cites a Vishnu Purana verse
that brings about the identity of the Atman and Brahman:
भूतात्मा चेन्द्रियात्मा च प्रधानात्मा तथा भवान् ।
आत्मा च परमात्मा च त्वमेकः पञ्चधा स्थितः ।। ५-१८-५० ।।
Sridhara Swamin comments: Bhutatma - the form of the mahabhuta-s (the
apanchikruta pancha bhutas), indriyatma - the form of the indiryas of the
jiva, pradhanatma - the form of prakriti, Atma - the jiva who is having the
first three as upadhis, and Paramatma, the Supreme Self. Brahman alone is
appearing as all these five types of 'Atman-s'.
The very next verse there is:
प्रसीद सर्व्व सर्व्वात्मन् क्षराक्षरमयेश्वर ।
ब्रह्म-विष्णु-शिव्राद्याभिः कल्पनाभिरुदीरितः ।। ५-१८-५१ ।।
O Lord who is verily the kshara and akshara (perishable and imperishable in
creation), the Self-of-All, the one called by the names such as Brahma,
Vishnu and Shiva, etc.which are mere imaginary ones.
Sridhara Swamin comments: ....कल्पनाभिः गुणोपाधिब्रह्मादिसंज्ञाभिः
[You are called by the imaginary names such as Brahmaa (Vishnu and Shiva,
etc)., that are based on gunas (such rajas, sattva and tamas).
From the above we conclude:
1. The Vishnu of the Purana and scriptures is Turiya Vishnu
2. The Trimurtis are mere names such as Brahma, Vishnu, etc.
3. They are all based on the three gunas: sattva, etc.
4. There are no real entities such as Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, and
5. The Turiya Vishnu is beyond all gunas.
6. Not even sattva is the default guna of the Turiya Vishnu (which the
uninformed take to be so)
7. The Turiya Vishnu is non-different from the Trimurtis.
8. Even Vishnu of the Trimurtis is only kalpita name/form/sattva guna
9. The Turiya Vishnu has no real default name.
Such is the nature of the Vedantinc Brahman that Shankara and Advaitins
alone can appreciate. The above idea is anathema for non-advaitins.
More information about the Advaita-l mailing list