[Advaita-l] Locus of avidyaa

kuntimaddi sadananda kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Tue May 20 10:31:52 CDT 2003

--- "M. S. Ravisankar" <ravi at ambaa.org> wrote:
> - jiva or iishvara cannot be locus of aviydaa because they are caused
> by it.
> - hence, the only choice we have is brahman. *
> - This is not a problem  because avidyaa is non existent and unreal.

Ravi there are inherently problmes with either conclusion - hence there
are two schools of thought developed in advaita. 

These is a problem in taking avidya as positive quantity (bhaavaruupa)
for it to have a locus.  

Statement that Jiva has avidya involves anyonya aashraya dosha - that is
what Ramanuja criticises.  Putting locus of avidya on Brahman will not
do justice to Brahman who is ekam eva advitiiyam. 

Who has the ignorance of the rope - obviously one who sees the rope not
as rope but as a snake.  At the same time avidya has to be anaadi -
begining less since any beginning will imply the knowledge before.  

I personally feel that defining avidya as bhaava ruupa caused lot more
problems than solutions to the sticky situation.  This perhaps came
about after Shankara in response to some puurvapaksha-s.

It is bettter to leave it as 'anirvachaniiyam' since the explanation is
only for the one who see the snake as a rope and not to the one who sees
the rope as a rope.  Any explanation is ontologically in the same degree
of reality as the jiva himself. There is no point in putting locus on
Brahman either.  Jiiva himself being a false guy can have the false
beginingless avidya too since he is the one who is deluded. Someone
asked me once 'who realizes Brahman' - the correct answer is - the one
who is asking the question. 

I would rather leave it  under the category of anirvachaniiyam - like
the chicken and egg situation.  Since it is of the type of abhaava ruupa
it can be  ontologically of the same degree as the jiiva who has the

Hari OM!

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