Shruti and logic
narayana at HD1.VSNL.NET.IN
Sun Mar 3 19:55:34 CST 2002
On 28 Feb 2002, at 03:38, Anand Hudli wrote:
> On Mon, 25 Feb 2002 23:04:04 +0530, D.V.N.Sarma <narayana at HD1.VSNL.NET.IN>
> > >From gauDapAda kArika, SankarA's introductory commentary
> >to Chapter 3 i.e., advaita prakaraNa.
> > >
> > >advaitaM kim AgamamAtrENa pratipattavyam AhOsvit tarkENApi
> >ityata aha - SakyatE tarkEnApi j~nAtuM; tatkathamityadvaita-
> >prakaraNam ArabhyatE....
> >Swami NikhilAnanda's translation.
> >Now it is asked whether nonduality can be established only by
> >scriptural evidence or whether it can be proved by reasoning as well.
> >It is said in reply that it is possible to establish nonduality by
> >reasoning as well. How is it possible? This is shown in this chapter
> >of Advaita.
> naishha doshhaH. There is no problem here, as Sureshvara says.
> The key to resolving your doubt is in what you have yourself quoted.
> The Self can be inferred by analyis of, for example, the three states
> of waking, dream, and sleep. But such inference can only lead to an
> *indirect* understanding. Sureshvara aptly adds "liN^gavyavadhAnena
> tatpratipatteH" - because (you ) establish (the Self) by
> inference using the liN^ga or hetu as an intervention. The term
> liN^ga is a technical term in nyAya. Please refer to my posting -
> "Brief review of nyAya concepts and terms" as part of the
> To explain, suppose you infer the existence of fire on a mountain
> by observing smoke on the mountain. Here your inference is based on
> the rule "where there is smoke there is fire." However, your inference
> of fire on the mountain is not equivalent to actually observing fire
> on the mountain. To actually see the fire, you may have to climb the
> mountain. This is the direct experience of witnessing the fire,
> different from inference of fire.
> Besides, there is another important point about inference and direct
> revelation of the Self by the shruti. You can present a logical argument
> to infer the nondual Self and post it on a website, for example. Anyone
> who is open to logical discussion can read it and understand such
> nonduality, albeit indirectly. There is no other qualification required
> for such an understanding.
> On the other hand, if you have to realize the Self directly, it has to
> be through the shruti only. You must have the necessary qualifications
> - the sAdhana chatusshTaya - *and* you must approach a Guru.
> JnAnottama's commentary on the naiShkarmya siddhi nicely summarizes
> this difference between inference and shruti:
> "liN^gajanitaviGYAnasya vyavahitatayA paroxatayA
> vastugrAhakatvAdaparoxatayA grahaNAya vAkyameva apexata
> iti samAdhatte"
> Since the realization of the entity (Self) resulting from the
> intervention of knowledge produced by inference is indirect,
> direct realization depends *only* on the vAkya (of the shruti).
> (Sureshvara) thus resolves the issue raised by the opponent.
I would like to point out that in the order in which pramANAs
are mentioned in logic anumAna (inference) is the second
and Agama (scripture) is the third. This indicates the order of their
What we are dealing with here is shruti mediated perception.
So it is the perception of the nonduality of atman that is
responsible for liberation. Everybody that hears nondual
shrutis does not automatically percieve the nonduality of atman.
It is only those who are ripe for it. This ripening is due to the
experiences the person undergoes. Thus we see that even for
people who accept shruti as pramANa it is not effective for
Secondly, for those people who do not accept hindu shruti
should we say that nonduality of atman is not valid or
this perception is not possible? I do not think that we can assert
any such thing. For them the perception of nonduality of atman
must be by some other means than the hindu shrutis.
That pramANa which caters to wider audience is superior to the
one that caters to a limited audience.
More information about the Advaita-l mailing list