shUnyavAda and KShaNikatva (momentariness)

Jaldhar H. Vyas jaldhar at BRAINCELLS.COM
Thu Jun 22 10:29:57 CDT 2000

On Thu, 22 Jun 2000, Ritwik Bhattacharya wrote:

> Hi,
> As a new member of the list, I am very disappointed by the way this
> thread has been handled on all sides. There seems to be an intense
> intolerance, especially on the part of the so-called "Advaitins", to
> any claims of influence on advaita from other sources. As someone said
> on one of the posts, it is quite obvious that both advaita and buddhism
> have been influenced by each other. Can we not leave it at that ?

Well as wouldbe practioners of Advaita Vedanta we surely want to know what
the scope of that influence is don't we?

Personally I think a case can be made that there could be some influence
and similarity in emphasis, tactics etc. simply because the two systems
have developed (for a certain period) in the same social/intellectual
millieu.  But the same could be said of Advaita and Vaishnavism, Advaita
and Samkhya, and Advaita and any number of other things.  I was intrigued
by Nandas theories because he has studied the subject thoroughly while I
haven't but based on what he has written so far I can't agree with some of
his conclusions.

On the subject of tolerance, our highest duty is to the truth and we
should be 100% intolerant to anything that distorts or obscures the
truth.  We should however be civil about it and everyone needs to exercise
some self-control about that.

> Some people have also said that such "dangerous" misinterpretations of
> old texts can leave the newcomer confused. To this, I can only say that
> a true seeker of the Truth is hardly likely to be concerned with such
> trivialities as who influenced who.

To refuse to learn doesn't make one a mystic it makes one ignorant. A true
seeker may be completely sincere but without knowing what he is seeking he
is never going to find it. It is a common mistake to mix the two together
so you can imagine how disastrous to ones practice it would be to not
realize that the Vedantic and Buddhist theories as to what is the nature
of Truth have about as much similarity as a dolphin and a bicycle.

> Is it not a basic tenet of Advaita
> that the Truth is only one ?

Yes but Untruth is many.  Therein lies the problem.

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar at>

bhava shankara deshikame sharaNam

Archives :
Help     : Email to listmaster at
Options  : To leave the list send a mail to
           listserv at with
           SIGNOFF ADVAITA-L in the body.

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list