reposting again

Vidyasankar vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Jul 30 12:39:06 CDT 2001

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

>The question is only, is there a direct or implied reference in
>shastra - particularly in the ten upanishads to the concept of maaya
>- Is maaya brought in as logical explanation taking advaitic
>statements- tat tvam asi or aham brahmaasmi- to explain how one
>appears to be many or is there direct shaastric pramaaNa.
> From what I gather from all the responses so far is that Shreeman
>S.M.S. Chari appears to be right in his comments that direct
>reference to it in the Upanishhat-s  in the meaning associated in
>advaitic doctrine is not there.

When the question is raised as to whether there is an implied reference,
if not a direct one, that is a matter of interpretation, no?

Take for example, the entire section of chAndogya where tat tvam asi is
taught. There are two directions described here, from the One to the many
(tad aikshata bahu syAm prajAyeya ...) and from the many to the One, via
the three forms of tejas, ap and anna (apAgAt candrAt candratvam, apAgAt
vidyuto vidyuttvam etc.). The entire description is tied together through
vAcArambhaNaM vikAro nAmadheyaM etc., which brings in the notion of nAma
and vAc. From here to nAmarUpa in Sankaracarya's texts is a very short
trip in interpretation, and from nAmarUpa to mAyA is an even shorter one.

So, we should conclude that when telling us how one appears to be many,
and how to go back to the one, the chAndogya Sruti is implying mAyA, in
the mature Advaita conception of the term. If Sruti directly referred to
it here, there would be no room for any other interpretation! There may
be a reason why this is so. The tradition of brahmavidyA leaves room for
many approaches, each suited to different kinds of adhikArin-s.


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