Notes on Brahmasuutra-IIIa

Ravisankar S. Mayavaram miinalochanii at YAHOO.COM
Tue Aug 29 15:27:37 CDT 2000

Dear Sir,

1) Thanks for this great series. You have excellent talent of
explaining very well. I am indeed fortunate to study this with you.

2) I just went through your article once. I would prefer them being
posted in smaller segments. Otherwise it is difficult to read it on
screen and one has to print. Danger in that is it may go to shelf for
later reading and may not be read at all.

I have some questions and comments in the prelimnary part.

--- "K. Sadananda" <sada at ANVIL.NRL.NAVY.MIL> wrote:

  As with all bhaashhyam-s, every bhaashhyakaara or
> author of
> bhaashhyam claims that his interpretation is close to the meaning of
> what
> was intended by Shree Baadaraayana.  We should recognize at the
> outset that
> the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta does not depend on the validation of
> its
> concepts by Brahmasuutra-s.  It rests squarely on the mahaavaakya-s,
> the
> four aphoristic statements, one in each of the four Veda-s;
> praJNaanam
> brahma (consciousness is Brahman), tat tvam asi (that thou art), aham
> brahmaasmi ( I am Brahman)  and ayam aatma brahma (this self is
> Brahman

I was under the impression that shruti has many (apparently)
contradicting statements and brahma suutra reconciles those seeming
contradictions. This gives importance to the work and to show that
brahma suutra-s indeed is in-line with advaita-vedanta.


> only when the knowledge comes.  In support of this we have
> declarations: 'na
> anyaH panthaaH ayanaaya vidyate', 'gataasuuana gataasuumscha na
> anusochanti
> paNDitaaH' - those who have gained the knowledge do not grieve for
> those who
> have gone and for those in the process of going'.

Can you explain na anyaH panthaH vidyate ayaNaaya and the context in
which it quoted.

ayaNaaya - for moxa
na vidyate - I do not know
anya panthaH - any other path

You quote this later in the text also. Unless you give the context of
this, it does not mean that "no other path other than knowledge removes
the samsaara" as you say.

Also the paNDitaaH may not grieve for those who have died and who are
in the process of dying for a different reason. That reason  need not
be identity of atmaa and brahman.

> When does the error takes place?  If the rope is completely not seen
> when it
> is pitch dark, then no error takes place, and there is no fear of a
> snake.
> Hence it is said that 'ignorance is a bliss', as in deep sleep.  In
> total
> ignorance, there is no error.  Similarly in total knowledge also

To quote your words (from past), there may no error of misapprehension
in deep sleep, but there is an error of  non-apprehension.  So it is
not free from error.

More than that, in your other example a person may be afraid of pitch
dark, even though he does not see a snake. He can still suspect snakes,
scorpions, and what not in that pitch dark.   Even if he does not know
that such a thing like snake exists, it may be after all there and
still bite him.

Deep sleep is more blissful because it suffers from fewer errors than
jaagrata and svapna states. Hence one may not say that deep sleep is a
more ignorant state than waking one. I think the opposite is true.

Please correct me. I hope I did not offend you by these questions. Once
again thanks a lot for the series.


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