post-Sankara teachers in advaita - prakAshAnanda

Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian rbalasub at ECN.PURDUE.EDU
Thu Jul 3 14:09:27 CDT 1997

DSV: dR^ishhTi-sR^ishhTi vAda
SDV: sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi vAda

Vidyasankar wrote:

>In the 16th century, prakASAnanda sarasvatI's vedAntasiddhAnta-muktAvalI, and
>siddhAntadIpa, a commentary on this work by nAnA dIkshita, represent a move
>away from the established bhAmatI and vivaraNa sub-schools. These two authors

And back to the original line of thinking expounded by shrI gauDapAda and the
mANDUkya upanishhad I would add. Though other advaitins have consistently
supported this methodology as I mentioned once before. Both bhAmati and
vivaraNa do not fall in line with shrI gauDapAda's methodology and represent a
move away from this work.

>argue for the dr.shTi-sr.shTi vAda, but their views did not become very

Here are some extracts from the book "shrI daxiNAmUrti stotram: A study based
on the mAnasollAsa and the tattva sudhA", by Sri Subbaramiya, a disciple of H.H.
abhinava vidyAtIrtha mahAsvAmigaL. I have enclosed by comments inside square
brackets i.e., [ .. ] at various places. Points I have wished to emphasize are
within two asterisks.

>From the shrImukham by H.H:

We shower our nArAyaNasmaraNapUrvaka blessings on our very dear disciple shrI

[ ... ]

In order to bless seekers of tender disposition, the bhAshyakAra shrI
sha.nkarabhagavatpAdAchArya has gifted many a prakaraNagrantha. **Of these, shrI
daxiNAmUrtistotram.h shines forth as supreme, indicating as it does the full
import of the entire shAstra. It is indeed because of this that seekers would
be able to comprehend effortlessly the full meaning **.

Fortunate indeed are you who have rendered yourself worthy of the benign grace
of our AchAryapAda, studied, in obedience to His command, the vedAntashAstra-s
according to sampradAyA under eminent vidvAn-s and have secured the plenary
experience as well. You have authored a magnum opus after a  deep study of
vedAntashAstra, in order to make known clearly to all people, the full import
of the vedAntashAstra, indicated in this shrIdaxiNAmUrtistotram.h. This work
has been written in English, a world language, with the intention of making it
universally accessible and useful. ** By a deep study and thorough reflection
of this work, one will be able to gain precise knowledge of the
advaitatattva **.

2.1 dR^ishhTi-sR^ishhTi vAda (pp. 59-60)

With this avowed object of showing that the universe is non-different from the
self, the Hymn begins the instruction

[ ... ]

This is directly opposed to the so called common sense view that the universe
is outside of oneself. Here, as in many other situations there is a reversal
of the commonly accepted notions as a result of enquiry - vichAreNa viparyeti
(pa.nchadashI-II-66) as shrI vidyAraNyacharaNa puts it. The disciple is well
able to take the teaching in this form. Also for him sakR^idupadesha along
with the sUchanA - hint - regarding the type of vichAra intended - is enough
to enable him to grasp the situation. ** Unlike the usual run of investigators,
for example the nAnAjIvavAdin-s or the sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi vAdin-s, those who
are unable to shake off easily the notion of many jIva-s inhabiting the world,
the disciple for whom the present instruction is offered is a vyutpanna who can
take the mukhyavedAntasiddhAnta viz. the eka jIvavAda **.

4.6.1 sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi vAda (pp. 201-202)

In the light of this, prakriyA, that endows the waking state with parlance
reality (vyAvahArikasattA) and the dream state with apparent reality
(prAtibhAsikasattA) must therefore be closely scrutinized. This prakriyA is
spoken of as the sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi vAda which supposes that what has been
created is perceived. Thus it accepts aGYAnasattA i.e., existence pertaining
to a thing independent of one's knowledge of it. ** This view cannot be
entertained **

[ ... ]

4.6.2 Place of Ishvara

Further the view entertained by the sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi vAdin that the world
is created by a universal consciousness called Ishvara defined as the
universal spirit that operates with the power of mAyA is also not free from

[ quotes from various works against SDV ]

As has been amply demonstrated, the kAryakAraNaprakriyA and also the sR^ishhTi
prakriyA adhered to in this vAda [SDV] have no meaning whatsoever and have to
be given up. The purport of the shruti is not and cannot be in delineating
sR^ishhTi and that in a sequential manner - kramasR^ishhTi [i.e., the author
says yugapatsR^ishhTi alone is acceptable ]. Primarily, it is to secure for
the disciple the brahmAtmaikya GYAna by layachintana, i.e., dissolution of the
effect in its material cause at every step. This procedure is adopted by the
shruti in accordance with the principle enunciated by Sri Bhagavan in the gItA
(III-26) na buddhibhedaM janayedaGYAnAM karmasa.nginAM | (Let no wise man cause
unsetllement in the minds of the ignorant attached to action) ** is meant for
the mandAdhikArI [disciple of lesser calibre] who sticks to the notions such as
plurality of jIva-s, distinction between the waking and dream states,
pramANa-s, karma, kAryakAraNaprakriyA, sR^ishhTi, the pariNAmaprakriyA in
relation to mAyA, distinction between the illusory and the real in the waking
state, aGYAnasatta etc **.

4.11 dR^ishhTisamasamayasR^ishhTi (pp 211-212)

[ ... ]

In contrast to the SDV, this viewpoint is referred to as the DSV. Any object,
be it the entire world,  must be deemed to arise co-terminously with the
cognition pertaining to it - dR^ishhTisamasamayasR^ishhTi. ** This prakriyA
liberates one from the plethora of assumptions indulged in to accommodate the
mandAdhikArI **.

[ quotes from shruti, etc in proof ]

4.14.11 Dream analogy resolves every doubt (pp 257)

It is thus seen that ** the best way of understanding DSV is on the dream
analogy ** which resolves every possible doubt that might arise therein

[ ... ]


Hence, DSV is _quite influential in the living advaitic tradition_, as it
walways has been. It is however not popular with the Western academics who have
no idea about the DSV and the way it is utilized in the traditional advaitic
maTha-s. I urge all who are interested in _practicing_ advaita to take a look
at this book (2 Volumes, ~1200 pages). It was written by the author because H.H
specifically asked him to. The vedAntasiddhAntamuktAvali and the TIkA thereof
are also quoted in the book. I haven't read the vedAntasiddhAntamuktAvali
myself, however the quotes given by the author seem to follow shrI gauDapAda
very closely. Anyway, the book will certainly help clearing the cobwebs
created by western academia (and  sadly these days, Indian academics also).
Worse still are writers who pay lip service to advaita and write complete
drivel in their books, like Aghehananda Bharati. In the past few months I have
been appalled at the amount of mis-information spread by such non-practicing
advaitins about advaita. Anyway, enough of my rants about literature from
non-practicing advaitins.


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