[Advaita-l] Abedha

Srinath Vedagarbha svedagarbha at gmail.com
Wed Aug 12 16:39:48 EDT 2020


On Tue, Aug 11, 2020 at 5:45 PM Shrinivas Gadkari <sgadkari2001 at yahoo.com>

> Namaste Shri Srinath Vedagarbha,
> What I have summarized is my understating - and very likely it is not
> fully aligned with any standard school of thought. This is the
> understanding
> that I have arrived at based on my study and contemplation until now.
>  "identity+difference" that I am referring to:
> One can use analogy of fire and spark here.
> One can understand what fire (Ishvara) is by understanding spark (jIva),
> Whatever tattva is in Ishvara same is to be found in jIva.
> This is the similarity.
> In Ishvara, each tattva is found it its grand state, in jIva it is in an
> attenuated state.
> This is the (big) difference.

I agree with your analysis. But please note "similarity" and "identity" are
totally different things.  Jiva can be said to be "similar" to Brahman. In
fact Dvaita accepts this sAdriShya (similarity) based on some common
factors, such as both are sentients, both are jnyAna svarUpa (however much
differentiation exists in its scale) etc.

You may have to be precise in your position -- instead of saying
"identity+difference", say "similarity+difference". But again, having the
term "difference" would be superfluous as the term "similarity" already
conveys two distinct entities.

> One falls down (hell) not based on what viewpoint one subscribes to but
> based on
> what relationship one develops with Ishvara. jIva has to realize the
> supreme efforts
> that Ishvara is continually putting in for the sake of jIva-s and the
> entire creation.
> This realization should develop into gratitude and love. This is bhakti in
> its
> pure form. With this form of bhakti in heart, hell is very difficult to
> attain.

Agree, but you are talking about who develops such bhakti. How do you
explain the fact that what factors in the jIva which initiates/develops

There are two options;

1. Due to anAdi karma cycle, a specific jIva may not have any bhakti in the
current life term, but "would" develop eventually.

2. A jIva intrinsically self centered and does not care to have any bhakti
or refuge in the Lord.

Former position opens up further questions than it seeks to answer the
first question. What factor(s) from anAdi time frame which influenced the
behavior one way or the other? If you summon anAdi karama theory to explain
this, then your proposition would run into infinite regress and the answer
cannot be determined till infinite time. This is what nyAya calls anavasthA
dOSha in an argument. Also, there are any shruti pramANa indicating jIva
would acquire bhakti when it was absent to begin with.

For the later position, the question would arise -- why some jIvas are evil
by their own nature? Since we are talking about uncreated entities, the
question on their very intrinsic nature is mute. We are not talking about
acquired guNa-s but we are talking about intrinsic svabhAva. It is not that
jIva exists with "blank canvas" first and later someone/something painted
evil on it. The "sva" prefix in svabhAva indicates the self same nature.
Hence, the question on the cause of evil is mute and only can be attributed
to self same jIva. Lord is not responsible for making some jIva-s evil.
This has been explored by BG in its doctrine of jIva trividya. Dvaita
accepts this doctrine and hence you would find only vEdic school having the
idea of eternal hell. It is the only school could able to answer big
philosophical questions about the problem of evil.

Advaita took altogether a different approach and explained away  the
problem of evil by denying Lord, jIva, bhakti, evil etc wholesale as
mithya. Everyday experience of good and evil is totally remains
unexplained. Who says advaita is anubhava siddha?


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