Antiquity of Advaita Vedanta (was Re: An Open Letter to All)

nanda chandran vpcnk at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Jun 12 18:07:20 CDT 2000

This is with respect to the ongoing discussion between Vidhya and me
regarding the Advaita and the MAdhyamaka traditions. We've been at it for
several weeks now and no clear conclusion seems to be coming out of it.
We're shooting off points to prove whichever theory we support. So I've not
replied to the last post of Vidhya, which contains some genuine arguments
which *could* bring a positive conclusion to this issue.

But again, I just do not wan't to write a reply to it and again set off
another round of discussion. So instead of this, I thought I could present a
full fledged article on the MAdhyamaka and its relation to Advaita. But this
is not a short paper (but it is not very long either) and would minimum
require to be posted in five parts of say 50 lines each. In that I would
cover the following :

1. the conditions which led to the rise of the MAdhyamaka,
2. the MAdhyamaka dialectic,
3. nirvAna as per the MAdhyamaka with reference to the MahAyAna SUtras, 4.
Some objections against shUnyatA answered and
5. Advaita - prachanna bauddham?

Infact I've typed most of it out over the weekend. And it would be a good
educational thing for those not familiar with what Vidhya and I have been
discussing. But I thought I'd better ask the permission of the list owners
before I started posting.

Ironically after all these discussions I've come to the conclusion that the
end of Advaita and the MAdhyamaka are *not* the same (but my analysis is
different from what Vidhya is advocating). I'd actually nursed this doubt
for sometime and had even written something on this on the Indology list.
But all these discussions helped my clarify my understanding. So if the list
owners allow, I'll post the article.
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