[Advaita-l] On rationality; was "Vedas are not apauresheya according to the Vedas ?"

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Thu Jan 24 04:04:18 CST 2013

On Thu, Jan 24, 2013 at 2:39 PM, Bhaskar YR <bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com> wrote:

> praNAms
> Hare Krishna
> Likewise, a person can approach the veda-s too by thinking that it is a
> work of perfectionist or a thorough person (like rishi like veda vyAsa,
> shuka, ramaNa, shankara bhagavatpAda etc.), who documented/worded his
> experience

I think you have missed what the HH is saying and are proposing something
that the HH has questioned!!  How did that person attain such a
perfection?  What sAdhana he followed and who prescribed that sAdhana?  If
it is AptavAkya, how did that Apta become qualified to be so?  These are
the questions the HH asks and finally arrives at the apauruSheya veda to be
the source from which all this has to descend.  There will be no infinite
regress as you think.On the other hand there will be an end to this trail
at the apauruSheya veda stage.  No one can question further: 'how and from
whom did the Veda know?' for the Veda is not a person, puruSha.  This is
the only way the topic can be understood and appreciated.

And what is to be remembered in all this is that the Veda apauruSheyatva is
not intended to be an answer to nAstika-s.  It is meant for those who are
within the sampradaya but might get questions at some stage or the other.
It can come up at the stage of one's vedanta shravana stage. It might also
help those others outside the sampradaya who might find the argument
convincing enough to take to the teaching of the Vedanta. Many youngsters
of our own sampradaya who have not applied their minds to this can very
well ask questions on this and here the apauruSheyatva will be immensely
helpful.  And the rule: 'shrutyanugRhIta tarka' is applicable here too.

Also to be noted, in this very context, is that, the 'journey' that I
mentioned is not extraneous to the Bh.Gita; it can be charted within the
Gita itself:  We see that even the Lord, while giving out the teaching of
Brahman, acknowledges the authority of the Veda rather than His own:

yadakSharam vedavido vadanti vishanti yadyatayo vItarAgAH
yadicChanto brahmacharyam charanti tat te padam sangraheNa pravakShye
8.11.  which is reminiscent of the KathopaniShat mantra:

sarve vedA yatpadamAmananti....where even the Acharya Yama does not say the
teaching is his; he points to the authority of the Veda.  Again we see in
the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad: 'tam tu aupaniShadam pRcchAmi  where the
PuruSha that is sought to be known is not anyone's imagination (like a
novelist's character) but someone who is known in and through the
Upanishads alone.  See how impersonal all these luminaries, even the Lord,
are when it comes to acknowledging the authority of the Veda which itself
is no person.  And what is more, even the Upanishad itself acknowledges the
authority of the Upanishads!!

For the 'vedAntakRt vedavideva chAham' of the Bh.Gita 15th chapter Shankara
says: 'vedAntArthasampradAyakRt' [Bhagavan Krishna is saying that He is the
originator of the teaching sampradaya of the purport of the Vedaanta
(Upanishads)] thereby preventing anyone from thinking that the Lord is the
author of the Vedanta.


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