[Advaita-l] Vikalpa, Savikalpa, and Nirvikalpa

श्रीमल्ललितालालितः lalitaalaalitah at lalitaalaalitah.com
Tue Aug 21 07:08:51 CDT 2012

On Tue, Aug 21, 2012 at 3:41 PM, V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com>wrote:

> Is not vikalpa also, in yet another context,  'options/alternatives'?  Eg:
> एवम् उत अनेवम् इति द्वेधा विकल्प्य...For a samshaya/doubt, it is said there
> should be minimum two alternatives: 'this or that'?

A word may have many meanings according to lexicon, etc. But, the best
suited is applied according to prakaraNam.
So, yes the word vikalpa means option also. But, it only means visheShaNam
when we talk of GYAnam.

> > nirvikalpaka-GYAnam means an experience which illuminates just the thing
> > and not it's attributes.
> >
> I have heard that this is also called 'अनुव्यवसायः’.  Will you kindly
> explain this term for more clarity?

For utter clarity nirvikalpaka-GYAnam and anuvyavasAya are very different.
While the first is already defined here, let me say something about
anuvyavasAya is equivalent to sAxI-GYAnam of vedAntin-s. It is simply the
experience of experience.
For example :
The vR^itti - 'this is pot' which is generated by eyes after its contact
with a pot is called vyavasAya.
After that their arises another vR^itti in shape of "I know that this is a
pot" OR "I know the pot" OR "I'm the knower of pot" which is termed as
anuvyavasAya by tArkika-s.

 > When vedAntin-s talk about nirvikalpa or nirvikalpaka-GYAna of brahma as
> > cause of liberation, they talk about this division and not otherwise as
> is
> > popular now by the grace of neo-vedAntin-s and hindu-missionaries.
> In Savikalpa samAdhi the dhyAna-dhyAtR-dhyeya
> (meditation/meditator/meditated) difference is experienced.  In Nirvikalpa
> samadhi this difference is transcended and the 'vastu' alone shines.
> Here is a quote from the Book 'Exalting Elucidations' of Jagadguru Sri
> Abhinava Vidyatirtha Swamiji of Sringeri:
> Q:What is the characteristic of nirvikalpa samadhi?
> A: The absence of awareness of the distinction of the seer, the seen and
> the act of seeing is indeed its special characteristic.  The Atman is
> clearly perceived.  Further, supreme bliss is experienced.

If you are trying to say that AchArya is supporting the view of
neo-vedAntin-s. Then I've to say just this :
As the word nirvikalpaka means both specific-GYAnam and specific-samAdhi,
so it helped to create confusion.
I don't say that nirvikalpaka-samAdhi is never talked in vedAnta-books. It
is actually helpful means to control viparIta-bhAvanA and hence is
practiced by all.
I just mean to say that the knowledge which is termed nirvikalpaka and
means of moxa is not same as the nirvikalpaka-samAdhi or the Atman shining
in that state.
I'll also like to add that such nirvikalpaka-GYAnam of brahma actually
doesn't need nirvikalpaka-samAdhi to gain birth.

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