Antiquity of Advaita Vedanta

nanda chandran vpcnk at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Jun 26 11:27:33 CDT 2000

Anand writes :

>It very diligently avoids
>being at the two extremes of positing an absolute reality and
>advocating nihilism.

But do not confuse this as an ontological position. The middle way is only
an epistemological reading. According to the MAdhyamakas, "is" and "is not"
are only *categories of the intellect*, which is why they shy away from both
extremes - for reality is beyond the intellect.

>The principle of pratItya-samutpAda reigns
>supreme in this system.

Only at the phenomenal level where everything is shUnya. But as NAgArjuna
teaches in the last chapter of the MMK, the twelve linked chain of causation
- pratItya samutpAda - itself is shUnya, because it is not ultimately
intelligible. That's why he says the Buddha in reality never taught any
dharma! For truth is silence.

>It sure changed my previously held
>(misinformed) opinion of mAdhyamika as mere nihilism.

Be prepared to change it again.

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