[Advaita-l] Re The stance of the upadeshasaahasrii on Ignorance, Deep Sleep

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Thu Jun 6 09:01:10 CDT 2013


> pAramArthika siddhAnta drushti ( that is without superimposing the avidyA 
> (jnAnAbhAva rUpa) to the jeeva in sushupti) some amazing and unbelievable 
> declarations come from both shruti and shankara. ONe of the foremost 
> example for this is where shankara says ajnAna hetu in sushupti is 
> 'ekatva' not mUlAvidyA nor agrahaNAtmaka avidyA. tatra ajnAna hetuM 
> ekatvameva tadajnAnahetuH !!?? If the sushupti is really full of avidyA, 
> why shankara says here ajnAna hetu is ekatva?? Hence, there is various 
> view points through which we have to approach sushupti to understand its 
> importance in entirety. 

For want of time, I will not post a lengthy analysis of these issues. In any case, 
they will keep recurring on this list, for they have not been resolved for a long
time. Here is a short summary of something very basic that I feel is being
overlooked by many disputants on this topic.


sushupti => ekatva => ajnAna hetu. Yes, granted that Sankara says this. But is
this statement being understood right? Why should ekatva lead to ajnAna?
Will ekatva necessarily lead to ajnAna? Is such ajnAna the same as adhyAsa? 
But then, we have all just agreed that no adhyAsa takes place in sushupti,
for where there is no itara, there can be no itaretara adhyAsa.


Moreover, we are all agreed that there is no adhyAsa in mukti, for there is no
itara here as well (neha nAnAsti kiMcana). Now, is there a possibility that ekatva
in the mukti state could also be an ajnAna-hetu? Could ekatva/sarvAtmatva in
the state of mukti itself lead to another cycle of ajnAna = avidyA? Logically speaking,
if the ekatva in sushupti can be a hetu for ajnAna, in whatever sense we take 
such causality (hetutva), and if there is nothing else in sushupti to explain this,
then it should follow that ekatva in mukti will also be a hetu for ajnAna to
resurface. If this cannot or will not happen, then it follows that ekatva in mukti
has to be of a nature that is distinctly different from ekatva in sushupti. What
is it that distinguishes ekatva in mukti from ekatva in sushupti?


The only way to say, within our vyavahAra, that ekatva in mukti will not be an
ajnAna hetu unlike in the sushupti state, is to acknowledge that in sushupti,
there is a seed form of avidyA, a bIja, that persists, but not so in mukti. Once
this is granted as a necessity, then it makes sense to discuss further. Whether
this seed is mUlAvidyA, or is it only tulAvidyA, or can it be called something
that constitutes a kAraNa-SarIra, or is it analogous to avidyA-leSa, are all
questions that arise later. To me, it seems that there can be various answers,
depending on what one's assumptions are and what model one adopts to
talk of the jIva (avaccheda/AbhAsa/pratibimba/aMSa ...).


I will leave it at this.


Best regards,




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