Advaita : Some Basic Explanations - 13 (The last)

hbdave hbd at DDIT.ERNET.IN
Fri Mar 22 01:02:50 CST 2002

D.V.N.Sarma wrote:

> On 20 Mar 2002, at 17:21,  hbdave wrote:
> >
> > Coming to posting by Shri D.V.N. Sharma, where he wrote :
> > > > As I have already pointed out according to Sankara
> > > > kUTastha is mAyA.
> > >
> >
> > Maya is Kutastha and not other way round. The refered
> > passage by Shankaracharya is as follows :
> >
> > [Giita : XV-16]
> > {\skt  dvaavimau puru.sau loke k.sara"scaak.sara eva ca |}
> > {\skt  k.sara.h bhuutaani kuu.tastho .a k.sara ucyate ||}
> >
> > Shankar commentary :
> > {\skt bhagavata.h maayaa"sakti.h k.saraakhyasya puru.sasya utpattibiijam
> > |
> > kuu.tastha.h raa"si.h eva sthita.h athavaa kuu.ta maayaa
> > va~ncanaa jihmataa ku.tilataa iti paryaayaa
> > sthita.h kuu.tastha.h |}
> >
> > The Mayashakti of the brahman is the  origin of the Purusha called
> > Kshara.
> > Kutastha means one which is staying steady as anvil or Kuta means Maya,
> > deception, hiding, wikedness, etc. One who stays with many such form of
> > Maya is Kutastha.
> >
> > There was a king who liked to observe his kingdom in guize of a beggar.
> > When his minister saw him on the road, he said "this beggar is the
> > king."
> > He would not say "This king is beggar", because then it has a different
> > meaning.
> >
> > Thus Maya is Kutastha and not the other way round. As shown above
> > Adi Shankara did not say that Kutastha is Maya.
> >
> Wonderful! I do not know what you are trying to achieve.

I have very little  left to achieve  [I have reached the level of my
inefficiency -
as Peterson would have said :-)],
but, here I am trying to clarify the confusion that statement can create.

> But all said and done Sankara does say koo.tastha is maayaa.

That is your derivation and NOT actual words of Acharya.

> Gita says "koo.tasthoekshara ucyatae"
> This means "koo.tastha is said to be akshara or indestructible."

This is baadhasaamaanyaadhikara.nyam
Just as all the attributes of the beggar are not to be conveyed to
the king in the sentence "this beggar is the king", in saying
this Kutastha is said to be akshara, all attributes that you
apply to akshara are not necessarily applicable to Kutastha.

> Then Sankara says
> apara.h purusha.h ak.sara.h tadvipareetoe bhagavata.h
> maayaa"sakti.h k.saraakhyasya puru.sasya utpattibiijam
> anaekasamsaarijamtukaamakarmaadisamskaaraasraya.h
> ak.sara.h ucyatae.
> The other, in opposition to the previous (k.sara,
> is ak.sara (indestructible), is Lord's  maaya"sakti, and  is the
> seed of origination of k.sara and also is the shelter
> for the samskaaraas (imprints) of the desires and actions of
> the many worldly beings. That is called ak.sara
> If koo.tastha is ak.sara and ak.sara is maayaa then koo.tastha
> is maayaa.

This is your derivation. What is the meaning of the word "is"
in your above equation?

> I request you to peruse the many subcommentaries on
> Sankarabhaashya, e.g., goodhaarthadeepika of madhusoodana
> sarswati etc.

Thanks, but one need to consult subcommentaries, sub-subcommentaries
etc only if one is not clear in his mind. No disrespect meant to swamiji.

> regards,
> Sarma.


There are three major points here :

(1)    We should realize that the vocabulary of Advaita Vedanta became
stabilized only after Adi Shankara.
Depending  upon the Shastra he was commenting upon, Acharya has used words
rather flexibly. The sub-commentaries etc. are trying to explain  uktam,
and duruktam in his commentary.
Also the words used in texts like Giita are to be specially interpreted to
make them
match with more recent usage.

Those who have studied these extensive literature of sub-commentaries, tika,
should avoid confusion created by pointing out the variations in vocabulary.
should try to discuss in terms of a standardized nomenclature, as far as
possible, as
a consideration to new-comers to the field.

(2)  There are 3 places (as far as I know) where the word "kutastha" is used
in Giita
[VI-8, XII-3 and XV-16]  Acharya has explain them as :

VI-6 : kutastha - {\skt aprakampya.h} - steadt, non-varying;
XII-3 : kutastha - as characterization of {\skt ak.saram} - {\skt acintyam
                {\skt tasmin kuu.te sthita.m kuu.tastha.m tadadhyak.satayaa
                {\skt athavaa raa"si.h iva sthita.m}
XV-16 : we are discussing this use.

Thus it is seen that elsewhere in Giita also, Acharya has NOT called
Kutastha as Maya, but has said, as one of the meaning, that Kutastha
is adhyaksha - controller - of Maya.
The same meaning has to be taken for XV-16.

(3)    Shankara's commentary refers to akshara only. The link between
Kutastha and akshara is by {\skt badhasaamaanaadhikara.nyam}
{\skt kuu.tastha ak.sara.h ucyate} thus the attributes of Mayashakti
apply to akshara and not to Kutastha. Kutasth is adhyaksha of Maya.

Best to all.
-- Himanshu

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: </archives/advaita-l/attachments/20020322/f7c769ae/attachment.html>

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list