advaita-siddhi - 8 (more on the arthAntara charge)
In the previous part of the series, we have seen how MadhusUdana refutes the charge of arthAntara, ie. proving something other than what he intended to. Next, MadhusUdana shows how mithyAtva can be redefined so that the opponent cannot even dream (no pun intended!) of making the charge of arthAntara. MadhusUdana alternatively defines mithyAtva as the absolute difference from sattva and the absolute difference from asattva. It must be noted that this alternative definition is not a new definition; it is entirely equivalent to the one accepted so far, ie. the absolute absence of sattva and the absolute absence of asattva. The alternate definition makes use of mutual absence or anyonya-abhAva as opposed to atyanta-abhAva in the first definition.
satpratiyogika-asatpratiyogikabhedadvayaM vA sAdhyam.h | tathAcha
ubhayAtmakatve .anyatarAtmakatve vA, tAdR^igbheda-asaMbhavena
Alternatively, (we may define) the sAdhya (the unreality of duality, mithyAtva) to be the difference that has existence as its counter- positive AND the difference that nonexistence as its counter-positive. (Simply put, mithyAtva is that which is different from existence AND different from nonexistence as well.) And there is no scope for (charging us with) arthAntara due to this because such difference from both (existence and nonexistence) or difference from one of them is not possible (according to our other opponents- the logicians led by Gangesha, the Buddhists, and the view of VAchaspati Mishra in the nyAyavArttikatAtparyaTIkA).
Explanation by BrahmAnanda and explanation of BrahmAnanda's explanation by ViTThalesha
BrahmAnanda (in his laghuchandrikA):
bhedeti AtyantikabhedetyarthaH |
By "bheda" (difference) (MadhusUdana) means "absolute difference."
ViTThalesha (in his viTThaleshopAdhyAyI):
nanu prapaJNchasya sadasadubhayarUpatAmate sadbheda-asadbhedayorapi
avachchhedakabhedena tatra sattvAt.h siddhasAdhanaM ata Aha - Atyantiketi |
Now, even as per the view that the world is both real and unreal, the difference from "sat" and difference from "asat" are present there as limiting differences. This leads to siddha-sAdhana (doshha), establishing what is already established (since such a view is already held by VAchaspati Mishra in his nyAyavArttikatAtparyaTIkA.) Therefore, (in order to refute this charge) (BrahmAnanda) says "(the difference) is absolute."
[ MadhusUdana uses the word bheda which BrahmAnanda clarifies to be not difference used loosely but absolute and complete difference. Otherwise, the opponent can say that as per the view that holds the world to be both real and unreal, a partial difference from reality and a partial difference from unreality can be said to characterize the world. And this would lead to the objection: "You are proving what has already been proved."]
"bhramavishhayIbhUta-alIkasaMsargavishishhTAdirUpeNa prapaJNcho .alIkaH
rUpAntareNa tu satya " iti nyAyapeTikAkAravAchaspatyuktapaxe ityarthaH |
(MadhusUdana says) "in (defining the world as having) the nature of both (sat and asat)." This means the view of VAchaspati Mishra in his nyAyavArtikatAtparyaTIkA according to which "As the world is the object of erroneous cognition (such as silver-in-nacre), due to being qualified by the false relation, it (the world) is false. But in its other capacity, the world is real."
"bhramavishhayIbhUta-alIkasaMsargavishishhTAdirUpeNa prapaJNcho .alIka"
iti| idaMrajatamityAdibhrameshhu satye dharmiNi satyameva hi dR^ishyaM
rajatAdikaM alIkasaMbandhena bhAsate, tatra svarUpataH satyayorapi-ida
In illusions such as "this is silver" (ie. illusion of silver in nacre), a real object such as silver appears in the real subject (but) with a false relation. In such a case, even though "this" and silver are real in themselves, due to being qualified by a false relation they are unreal.
[In the illusion, "this is silver", the "this" and silver indicate real objects of cognition. Silver in itself is a real object. So is the thing indicated by "this". The fact that I am seeing something which I call "this" is true. Also, it is true that I have seen silver before. But the mistake I make is in identifying "this" with silver when I say "this is silver." So VAchaspati Mishra holds (in his nyAya text) that in an illusion, there is a false (alIka) relation between real things that are related by such a false relation. The relata are real in themselves but as relata of the false relation, they are unreal. The false relation in the illusion "this is silver" is the relation of identity (tAdAtmya). We will see next that this view is extended to define the world as being both real and unreal.]
etanmate brahmaNi prapaJNchasya-alIkasaMbandhena bhrama iti na
bhramitavyam.h | idami rajatasyeva tatra tattatpadArthAnAM
bhramAnAdAyaiva sarvasyApi prapaJNchasya-alIkatopapatteH |
(But) this view should not be mistaken as (holding) that there is a case of illusion due to the false relation of the world with Brahman. For, just as in the case of (the illusion of) "this" and silver, the illusions of various things in the world cause the whole world to be established as unreal.
(By) "rUpAntareNa tu satyaH" (is meant): (But) by the nature of being relata of a real relation that is the object of right knowledge, things denoted by "silver", "this", etc. (and the whole world) (are real). [pramA is right or valid knowledge and bhrama is erroneous knowledge or illusion. In pramA, a real relation is cognized among real objects and so far as pramA is concerned, these objects are also real. In bhrama, a false relation appears to be existing among objects that are real in themselves. But due to the false relation, the reality of the relata of the false relation is also denied. Thus it is that the world is both real and unreal, since its objects can be relata of both real and false cognitions. This is the view of VAchaspati in his nyAyavArtikatAtparyaTIkA.]
[Next, BrahmAnanda explains what MadhusUdana means when he says "anyatarAtmakatve" ]
anyatarAtmakatve iti | bhramavishhayo .api saMsargo deshAntarastha-
tvAt.h satya iti prapaJNchaH satya eveti paxe,
As per the view (of the realists, naiyAyikas), even though the relation (of identity, for example in "this is silver") is the content of erroneous knowledge, it is real because it occurs (as the content of valid knowledge, pramA) in other places. Therefore, (all things in the world are real and) the world is real.
[The naiyAyikas led by Gangesha of the navya-nyAya school, who are realists-to-the-core insist that erroneous cognition or illusion is really due some defect (doshha). "doshho .apramAyA janakaH" says VishvanAtha in the bhAshhA-parichchheda. When there is an illusion "this is silver" with respect to nacre, the memory of silver color, the similarity of the color being seen with silver, and other defects such as improper light, poor vision, etc., cause the illusion. But when real silver is being seen, the same cognition "this is silver" becomes a valid knowledge, pramA. So the cognition "this is silver", though erroneous due to defect(s) in one place, can become valid in some other place. Hence, there is no cognition of the unreal any time. And the world is real.]
GYAnAtiriktarUpeNa-alIka eva prapaJNcho vikalpavishhaya iti paxe chetyarthaH |
And, as per the view (of the vijnAnavAdi-bauddha's), the world is only false (unreal) because it is absolutely different from consciousness and is a figment of imagination. This is the meaning.
[Among the three views presented so far, it is obvious that absolute difference from sattva is not possible in the case of VAchaspati Mishra's view in his nyAya text and the view of the vijnAnavAdi- Buddhists cannot admit an absolute difference from asattva. The naiyAyika (logician) says the world is real, but then what MadhusUdana has said is that the world is absolutely different from both the real (sattva) and the unreal (asattva). Hence, none of the three views is identical to the advaita view. This means that there can be no arthAntara in establishing that the world is absolutely different from sattva and absolutely different from asattva. BrahmAnanda next clarifies that the definition given by MadhusUdana that includes absolute difference from sattva rules out any arthAntara charge made against advaita in the following manner. "Since Vachaspati's nyAya text says that the world is both real and unreal, this is equivalent to saying that the world is different from the real and the unreal. So your definition of the world as being different from sattva and asattva is not going to prove mithyAtva at all. It is going to prove the view of Vachaspati in his nyAya text which is not the view of advaita. Hence the arthAntara." ]
anavakAsha iti | asattvAbhAvasya kevalaprapaJNche sattvasya
tadupahitaprapaJNche svIkAre sattvopahitaprapaJNchasya kevala-
prapaJNche tAdAtmyasattvAnna tatraikAntikaH sadbheda iti bhAvaH|
The purport of (Madhusudana's saying) "anavakAsha" is: (Even by) accepting the absence of asattva in the whole world which (also) depends on sattva (since the world is also said to be sat as per Vachaspati in his nyAya text), the world which thus depends on sattva and this sattva-dependent part is identified in the whole world, there is NO absolute difference from sat, (which is what our definition of sadasadanadhikaraNatva requires).
[Even though "both real and unreal" can be construed as "different from real and different from unreal", this view does not entail, for example, "absolutely different from real" which is what MadhusUdana's definition requires. So there is no arthAntara whatsoever].