[Advaita-l] Discussion on pratitya-samutpada and Adwaita

Ananta Bhagwat ananta14 at yahoo.com
Sat Apr 26 13:49:22 CDT 2008

Re Advaita, pratItya-samutpAda, Fuzzy Logic, FA, process philosophy etc.

1/ Finite Automata (FA) is not fuzzy-logic though it can be both determinate and indeterminate. It is a labeled directed graph in which nodes are called states and edges are called transitions. The next state of FA is generally determined by the previous state(s) and inputs (conditions) available to the previous state(s). It is a mathematical tool that has been used by (computer) language designers for writing parsers. (Ref Text like Aho and Ullman - The Theory of Parsing, Language, and Compiling). The pratItyasamutpAda has similar framework. This framework is quite rich and most of the  (if not all) perceivable-conceivable phenomenon can be expressed in this framework including physical and virtual processes.

2/ Fuzzy logic has not only two (Yes, No) type of states but multiple (often infinite) states in between. (Ref Text like Klir and Folger - Prentice Hall). We can say that mAyA doctrine is a doctrine of fuzzy logic; in that sense mAyA is sadasatvilakshaNa. Yes, the versatile syAdavAda of Jainism (what is sometimes known as saptabhangi or anekAntavAda) also comes close to fuzzy logic.

3/ Advaita and Buddhism (particularly yogAcAra and mAdhyamaka) has some similarities of techniques and concepts. I believe all of them can find their roots in upanishads, or at least in traditions which were prevalent during the vedic period (800BC-500BC). I feel, both upanishad-s and Buddha rejected excessive ritualism of brAhmaNa-s (The liturgical part of veda-s) in their own ways.

4/ advaita is neither pure science nor pure metaphysics nor pure philosophy. It offers unique epistemological, ontological, and ethical (spiritual) unity. One should not read too much science in advaita, other wise the balance of this unity is disturbed.


----- Original Message ----
From: "srikanta at nie.ac.in" <srikanta at nie.ac.in>
To: advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
Sent: Saturday, April 26, 2008 1:53:51 PM
Subject: [Advaita-l] Discussion on pratitya-samutpada and Adwaita

In his discussion on the above topic,Sri.Ananta Bhagawat writes that
pratitya-samutpada is closer to modern science because of renewed interest
in finite automata.Perhaps,he is referring to the "fuzzy logic" of the
neural networks and computers.Infact the Anekantavada or the "sapta bhangi
naya"of Jainism is closer to Fuzzy logic of finite automata.Fuzzy logic
allows different levels of logic as against the binary logic of Boolean
algebra.The anekantavada or saptabhanginaya states that an object can be
defined in 7 ways:"it is,it is not, it is both is and it is not,it is but
it is not is not,it is not it,but is not,it is not it is not"(asti,nasti
asti ca nasti,nasti nasti,nasti ca asti etc.).It can be defined as  a type
of fuzzy logic in modern day fuzzy logic(refer Zadeh on fuzzy logic).But,
in pratitya-samutpada of madhyamaka Buddhism,every thing is defined as
sunya(it is defined as nullity).it was first proposed by Nagarjuna in the
4 th century.Mahayana Buddhism came into vogue after the council of
Buddhism in Kanishka's time.There are two prominent schools in
Buddhism;vaibhashika and Sautrantika.Asanga and his step brother
Vasubandhu developed the Yogachara school of Buddhism.Later, the
madhyamaka school was founded by Nagarjuna.After Nagarjuna,Yogachara
school of Vasubandhu was developed by Dignaga and Dharmakirti.It was
called Vijnanavada of Buddhism.It is this school which is taken for
examination by Acharya Gaudapada in his Mandukyopanishad karikas.
In pratitya-samutpada(theory of dependent co-origination) every thing is
dependently arisen."sarve nissvabhavah",every thing is without self
nature."Sarve nairatmyam,sarvam duhkam,nirvanam shantam"so says Buddha.In
his book,"vaidalyaprakarana",Nagarjuna clearly defines what is
pratitya-samutpada.But,in Adwaita,Maya is anirvacaniya(inexplicable),or is
called 'durghata',"aghatita ghatitam ghatayati",It is said to be not,yet
it is,but it is different from these two'it is sadasadvilakshna.

Regards,Bhava shankara Desika me Sharanam.              N.Srikanta.

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