[Advaita-l] Apoureshyatva - Faith or Logic?

Sunil Bhattacharjya sunil_bhattacharjya at yahoo.com
Sun Jul 1 21:45:21 CDT 2012

The traditional view is that Jaimini lived towards the end of the Dwapara Yuga and the Dwapara yuga ended on 3102 BCE with the passing away of Lord Krishna, ie., about 5,000 years ago.

 From: "rajaramvenk at gmail.com" <rajaramvenk at gmail.com>
To: Sunil Bhattacharjya <sunil_bhattacharjya at yahoo.com>; A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> 
Sent: Sunday, July 1, 2012 12:39 PM
Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Apoureshyatva - Faith or Logic?
That is okay. But we have to take a position on the date of origin of the opinion that Vedas are paureshya. I have no problem in with the traditional view point that Jaimini lived around 25 BCE. That would mean that the paureshya view is equally old because Jaimini refutes it. Paureshya view might have orally existed for a long time along side the apaureshya view but the literary evidence for it is no earlier than 8 BCE. 

In any case, what is important is the force of the argument in favour of apaureshyatvam not just its antiquity. There are oral traditions among native Americans, Africans, Iranians and early Europeans. Unlike other beliefs, in vaidhika marga it is not faith in a personality that is central as it depends on sabda pramana which is apaureshya. 
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From: Sunil Bhattacharjya <sunil_bhattacharjya at yahoo.com>
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Date: Sun, 1 Jul 2012 11:45:50 
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Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Apoureshyatva - Faith or Logic?

Dear Shri Rajaram,

I prefer to stand by the truth and not to bend. I do not think it proper for anybody to go by wrong literary evidences, which points to the timeframe of 2 - 5 BCE. 

Sunil KB

From: Rajaram Venkataramani <rajaramvenk at gmail.com>
To: Sunil Bhattacharjya <sunil_bhattacharjya at yahoo.com>; A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> 
Sent: Sunday, July 1, 2012 11:10
Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Apoureshyatva - Faith or Logic?

Dear Sri Sunil, 
For the purpose of establishing Veda Apaureshyatvam, it is only important to consider their arguments put forward by Jaimini and his commentators. We know from the commentaries very clearly that he was taking a position against the arguments of Buddhists, Jainas, Vaiseshikas and Naiyayikas. Even without the commentary we or the researchers can map the opponent views to a particular school of thought. Let us take the opponent view in vedan ca eke sannikarsham puru vakhya (JMS 1.1.27) meaning "And One hold that Vedas are modern having derived name from human". This view was held by Buddhists but it is not important who this party was. What is important in my view is how Jaimini and his commentators show the fallacy of that opinion. That is because that logic is valuable even today. 
My interest in history from the point of this
 paper is only to point out when the idea of paureshyatvam came in to existence. According to Kalavai Venkat, the first group to argue that Vedas are of human or divine origin were Ajivikas around 8 BCE (Rf. AL Basham). He would even argue that Panini ( 5 to 8 BCE) also says that Vedic language evolved and hence Panini's view is that Vedas are paureshya. I tend to question that because because Jaimini shows awareness of the argument of modification (Rf. JMS 1.1.10 prakrtivikrtyasecha And on account of original and modified forms). But we know for certain that the idea of paureshyatvam was put forward by Buddhists and Jainas. We also Kanada puts forth that view and so does Gautama. Their preceptors might have held that view for a long time before them. But we dont have any literary evidence to support that. So, the conclusion is that VedApaureshyatvam is an ancient opinion that came under attack in the last
2500 - 2800 years. 
I am a samavedin and am aware of the view expressed by you below. It is even hypothetically possible that Badarayana and Jaimini existed long before Mahavira. I have heard the traditional opinion is that they lived some 5000 years ago. It is quite possible that Jaimini was referring to the general objections to apaureshyatvam in his sutras. Andd our views are clouded by the later historical developments such as rise of Buddhism and Jainism. We may be reading too much in to why both Bhatta and Prabhakara schools refer to these schools in their commentaries on JMS. But we have to go by literary evidence if we want to write logically, which points to the timeframe of 2 - 5 BCE. 
As I mentioned multiple times now, when they lived is less relevant to evaluate the logical validity and decisiveness of mimamsa arguments in establishing apaureshyatvam. It is not unimportant but their theory of sabda is more
 important for us to accept vedas as pramanas and apaureshya. I hope we can move on from here. 
In case you did not notice it in my earlier post, there  thesis submitted to Calcutta University by one Sri Vacaspati in 1967 on "Self Validating knowledge in Mimamsa".  From the title and description of it, it addresses why the Vedas are a pramana. Is it possible for you to get a copy in case you live in Calcutta? 
Best Regards
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