[Advaita-l] ***UNCHECKED*** Re: [advaitin] rope has some problem in rope snake analogy :-)

Kuntimaddi Sadananda kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Tue Dec 26 23:18:11 EST 2023


Here is my understanding. 

Yes. In fact, every perception involves, cognition based on the attributes of the object as perceived by the senses (with all their limitations), and recognition based on the memory which involves comparing the objects perceived in the past with similar attributes. 

Snake is out there, similar to any other objects perceived via the mind and the senses. The seer of the snake (rope) has a firm belief that it is a snake. Hence his body also reacts - fear, increased blood pressure, etc., which are real. When he runs away from it - other physical reactions also follow. He may live with that perception throughout his life if there is no contradictory experience to prove that it was not a snake but a rope.

 If there is another convincing pramaana - such as going back with torch light and checking if it is a snake or rope, and got convinced it is a rope, the snake that he imagined based on the attributes disappears in his mind with the understanding there is no snake there. This is praatibhasika error since he alone saw. This is in contrast to sunrise and sunset or trees running in opposite direction, while watching in as running train or mirage waters, etc. Where knowledge of reality does not eliminate the perceptions.

The same applies to the perceived world which is vyaavahaarika error and will be perceived even after knowing that it is not really real but apparently real. Hence as long as body, mind, and intellect are functioning the Jnaani's body sees the world of plurality. However, his understanding is that it is mithyaa and not absolutely real. He may also understand that BMI is perceiving which is part of the Prakruti and He is akarthaa. That is his understanding. 

Hence the discussion of whether Jnaani perceives the world or not - is yes or no - hence senses do perceive as long as they are functioning, but his understanding can be different - karmani akarmayaH pasyet.- one who sees as non-doer while his body, mind and intellect are doing. 

For information only for those interested. The Indic Academy has published my book on the pratyaksha pramaana based on Vedanta Paribhasha -as 'How Do I Know'- now available online on Amazon. Dr. Aravindarao has written an introduction to the text. 

Hari Om!


Yes, even the Vedanta Paribhasha, I have heard, says that the 'illusory snake is 'produced' at that moment in the mind. We can say 'प्रतिपन्नोपाधौ विद्यमानत्वेन बुद्ध्या परिकल्पितः सर्पः' The snake is imagined 'as present in the locus, rope' at that moment.  

warm regardssubbu 

The context of my comment is, as you rightly point out, the
pratikarmavyavasthA that has been elaborately discussed by post Shankara
AchArya-s, involving artha and jnAna adhyAsa. I don't think merely that one
phrase in the bhAShya rules out the entire support structure, when there
are alternative explanations available.

The reason for the adhyasta object to be postulated to be *outside* is
because of the perceptual experience "I saw it *there*" and the pravRtti
towards (shell silver) or away from it (rope snake). Even though after the
sublation one knows that there is no object outside in reality, one does
not deny the fact that one had perceived it outside. One denies the
validity of that perception in the past because there is no corresponding
object outside in reality.

It is not like a memory where even during the recollection one is aware
that one is not perceiving a memory and one is merely recollecting what was
seen. In the adhyAsa, there are certain perceptual elements - ie there is
sensory contact with the locus of the adhyAsa (samprayoga). It is a product
of a defect in the mind (doShajanyatva) - which differentiate it from
memory, which is purely a mental construct, located in the mind.

That is why in the adhyAsa bhAShya, the bhAshyakAra uses the phrase
smRtirUpah, like a memory, to indicate that the adhyAsa shares with smRti
the characteristic of arising due to samskAra, but is not smRti itself,
because it is also doShajanya and has  samprayoga. It is also the reason he
adds the word paratra in that bhAShya (smRtirUpah paratra
pUrvadRShTAvabhAsah), to indicate that the object was seen to be elsewhere,
a particular location outside where something else was present.

On that basis I agree that it is the doSha located in the mind which acts
as a nimitta for the adhyAsa, but in my view that is not sufficient to make
the adhyAsa itself located in the mind.

Kind regards,

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