[Advaita-l] Mandana Misra's Advaita

Sunil Bhattacharjya sunil_bhattacharjya at yahoo.com
Tue Jun 18 16:32:24 CDT 2013


Kindly pardon me for digressing a bit. I have just read the Mathmnaya-Setu-Mahanushasanaqm published by the Dwarka Math, where it says that Vishwarupa or Sureshvaracharya was the first mathadhipati of the Dwarka pith, Pratardana or Toatakacharya was the first mathadhipati of the Joshi Math, Prithwidhara or Hastamalaka was the first mathadhiapti of the Sringeri Math and Sanandana or Padmapada was the first mathadhipati of the Govardhana Math. If this is accepted  then Mandana Mishra could have been a different person altogether.

Sunil KB

 From: V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com>
To: A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> 
Sent: Tuesday, June 18, 2013 3:44 AM
Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Mandana Misra's Advaita

On Tue, Jun 18, 2013 at 11:33 AM, Bhaskar YR <bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com> wrote:

> avidyA (of the
> Brahmasiddhi) is the same as what Shankara has stated, that is, the one
> which is of the nature of adhyAsa and which is jnAnanivartya
> praNAms Sri Subbu prabhuji
> Hare Krishna
> Thanks for clarifying this.  Though I donot know what exactly the position
> of brahmasiddhi, shankara used the term avidyA keeping the  'adhyAsa' or
> mithyAjnAna in mind.  Shankara is quite clear in explaining this in his
> adhyAsa bhAshya where he says : the avidyA which is of the nature of
> adhyAsa being responsible or the cause for the undesirable problem of the
> empirical transaction of the type 'ahaMkAra' mamakAra, which is clearly
> perceptible to everyone.  Unfortunately no where in the adhyAsa bhAshya he
> talked about the phenomenon called jnAna virOdhi, bhAva rUpa, mUlAvidyA
> (which is not jnAnAbhAva)  which is the material cause for adhyAsa.

In the adhyAsa bhAShya itself there are statements that mean that
adhyAsa/avidyA is removed by jnanam/vidyA.  For instance, the very last
sentence: 'asya anartha-hetoH prahANAya, AtmaikatvavidyA-pratipattaye sarvE
vEdAntAH Arabhyante.'  So, according to Shankara the purpose of the
upanishads is to teach that knowledge of the unity of the Self and through
that the removal of the cause of all calamity.  Thus knowledge, vidyA, is
the remover of avidyA which is the cause of anartha.

Again, in the latter half of the adhyasa bhashya we have 'prAk cha
tathAbhUta-Atma-vijnAnAt shAstram avidyAvadviShayam na ativartate'.
'before attaining that knowledge of the Self as described just before
(vedAnta vedyam ashanAyAdyatItam...the Self that is known only through the
upanishads characterized by freedom from hunger, etc. brAhmaNa jAti,
etc...) Here too we have the avidyAdRShTi and the vidyA that removes that.

Apart from the adhyAsa bhAShya references, we have a very direct reference
to the jnAnanivartyatva of avidyA in the mandukya kaarikAbhaShya 1.2  that
we have seen several times over recently:  jnAna-dAhya-bIjAbhAve
jnAnArthakyaprasangaH ['If we do not admit of a seed (ignorance) that is
not burnt by knowledge, the upanishadic teaching of knowledge will be
without any purpose to seve']  Here the jnAnanivartyatva of ajnAna/avidyA
is very clear.

In the Bh.G 5.16 jnAnena tu tadajnAnam yEShAm nAshitamAtmanaH.. Shankara
says: ajnAnam AtmaviShayeNa vivekajnAnEna nAshitam bhavati...[ ajnAna is
destroyed by Self-knowledge]

The above is only a sample.

> PS :  BTW, I read somewhere that even mandana mishra too talks about the
> advaitins who propagate the theory of avidyOpadAnakAraNa !!  Do you have
> any reference from this brahmasiddhi prabhuji??

That avidyopAdAnakAraNa is also available in shAnkara's bhashya for the
13th chapter last verse:  for the term 'bhUtaprakRti' shankara writes:
bhUtAnAm prakRtiH avidyAlakShaNA avyaktAkhyA...tasyAH abhAvagamanam.  Now,
if this avyakta is an abhAva vastu, one cannot use the word 'tasyAH'.
'prakRtiH means kAraNam. There cannot be an abhAvagamanam of abhAvaH.  Even
if we say 'unknownness'  ends, still only what 'is' alone can come to an
end.  From this bhashya sentence itself we can understand that a certain
'sattA' is accorded to it when alone will it be possible to negate it. That
is the way in which the term 'bhAvarUpatva' with relation to avidyA is to
be understood.

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