[Advaita-l] Omniscience, etc. only due to upAdhi

Bhaskar YR bhaskar.yr at in.abb.com
Tue Jan 7 03:55:49 CST 2014

praNAms Sri Subbu prabhuji
Hare Krishna

Just sharing my thoughts on one of your old mails :

> >  but Ishwara is NOT different from brahman and if we are ready to 
> Ishwara is sarvajna, I am not able to understand why not brahman?? Does
> parabrahman is inferior to Ishwara since he is lacking these 

Whether we like it or not, the mAnDUkya places Turiya (seventh mantra
nAntaH prajnam..prapanchopashamam..) 'above' Ishwara (sixth mantra:
sarveshwara, sarvajna, antaryAmi...).  Pl. read the bhAShya there.

>  I failed to see which bhAshya vAkya here that gives us the impression 
that there is something 'above' and 'below' Ishwara.  Yes, it is said that 
prAjna (please note which is upAdhi rahita ) in sushupti is sarveshwara, 
sarvajna.  Here this sarvajnatva attributed to jeeva's sushupti sthAna 
without the help of any upAdhi.   As you know absence of vishesha darshana 
(like in jAgrat & svapna) is due to ekeebhUta of these karaNa-s in Atman. 
tad etasmin kAle ekeebhutaM, AtmanaH pareNa parishvanjAt ....tena na 
pruthaktvena vyavasthitAni karaNAni vishayAscha, 'tadabhAvAt' 
visheshadarshanaM nAsti.  Here point to be noted is despite there is an 
absence of vishesha darshanaM, despite the fact that in this state is 
without upAdhi-s (sarvOpAdhivinirmukta)  prAjna has been called as 
vishesha jnAna rahita prajnAna ghana who is also sarveshwara, sarvajna 
(esha sarvEshwara, esha sarvajna, eshOntarmi esha yOniH sarvasya 
prabhAvApyayau hi bhUtAnAm. So, IMHO, it would rather supports that Atman 
is sarvajna without any aid of upAdhi.  And now the turiya which you think 
is 'above' Ishwara and not Ishwara but brahman!!  Here we should 
understand turiya is not a separate state aloof from the first three 
pAda-s.  Though vaishvAnara Atman sees the world in jAgrat, 
recalls/recollects as taijasa, remains sarveshwara in prAjnAvasthA all 
turiya is inherently vyApaka in all these three states.  sOyamAtma 
chatushpAt (Man-2) does not mean it is like a forth leg of a cow (gOpAda) 
it is its forth pAda which pervades & completes the other three pAda-s as 
well..Turiya is his svarUpa which is nAntaH prajna ( not taijasa) etc. but 
there can exist nothing apart from this turiya.  So, in short, turiya is 
vishva, tejasa, prAjna but vishva tejasa & prAjna are not turiya.  This is 
what krishna says in geeta : matshAni sarva bhUtAni, na cha matshAni 

> OTOH, I would say,  brahman's potence (shakti) which is inherent like
> existence and jnAnaM will be active through upAdhi in srushti kriya.
> Hence, we call the parabrahman itself as sOpAdhika brahman or saguNa
> brahman to denote chetanatva behind srushti.  If we argue parabrahman is
> minus sarvashaktitvaM and sarvajnatvaM we are restricting the parabrahma
> tattva and implying that parabrahman would get sarvashaktitvaM and
> sarvajnatvaM from jadOpAdhi then become Ishwara!!.

It is exactly this Shankara has stated in the IkShatyadhikaraNa:  without
that shakti Brahman can do nothing. 

>  and that shakti is not a borrowed one from mAyOpAdhi it is inherent in 
IT and ananya from IT,  gets projected only through the medium like 

Therefore this shakti is admitted as subordinate. 

>  mAya is brahmAdheena not his inherent power.  See ArambhaNAdhikaraNa 
sUtra bhAshya 2-1-18 and geeta bhAshya on guNatraya vibhAga yOga for 

Satyam Jnanam anantam Anandam are not subordinates; they are
the very svarUpa of brahman.

>  yes, this very svarUpa of brahman shows that brahman will always be 
endowed with shakti & jnAna and get the prefix 'sarva' whenever 'creation' 
taken into account. 

> While attributing sarvajnatvaM, sarvashaktitvaM etc. to Brahman we see
> these as taTasthalakShaNa and not svarUpalakShaNa.  'Inherent' means
> svarUpa.
> >  Yes, brahman's svarUpa is omnipotence, omniscience no matter whether
> 'omni' is there or not !!  And this inherent shaktitva will be displayed
> through upAdhi in srushtikriya (creation) and karma phala distribution
> etc. ekO devaH sarva bhUteshu gUdAH...kevalO nirhuNascha
> ....shvetAshvatara. Just like consciousness is the nature (svarUpa /
> svabhAva) of brahman shakti, knowledge etc. are the nature of brahman.

The first casualty of the above thinking is the teaching of 'tat tvam asi,
aham brahmAsmi' etc.  The jIva can never identify itself with omniscience,
etc.  This is the basis for bhAga-tyAga lakShaNA in understanding the

>  jeeva never thinks that he is sarveshwara, sarvashakta when he is in 
sushupti!! does he?? After the dawn of svarUpa jnAna, jnAni would realize 
that before the jnAna there was a source which was doing srushti, sthiti 
etc. but NOW that source is nothing but Atman.  prAk sadAtmavijnAnAt 
svAtmanOnyasyAt sataH praNAdernAmAntasya utpatti pralayau abhUtaM, sadAtma 
vijnAne tu sati idAneeM sva Atmata eva saMvruttaU, tathA sarvOpyanyO 
vyavahAraH Atmana eva vidushaH says shankara in chAdOgya.  So, jnAni does 
not do the creation etc. because he knows the limitation of his upAdhi-s 
and that of Ishwara and leave this job to Ishwara only and he knows that 
what is there in Ishwara and what is there with him is ONE and the SAME. 

> jnAna, shakti, Ishitavya etc. are the nature (inherent) of para brahman
> and parabrahman's these inherent nature is not borrowed one from upAdhi
> when he becomes Ishwara (sOpAdhika).  To distinguish the difference
> between shakti and shaktimAn, jnAna and jnAnavAn etc, the upAdhi-s have
> been introduced and it does not anyway mean after getting upAdhi
> brahman/Ishwara  would get the power  of sarvajnatvaM and 

Ishwara is anAdi.  So omniscience, etc. are upAdhis that exist in Ishwara.
Without these upAdhis is the nature of Turiya.

>  Yes, upAdhi rahita turiya's nature is not devoid of jnAnaM and 
anantatvaM and upAdhi sahita Ishwara is the creator with his sarveshwara 
and sarvashakti gUna saMpannata.  Just like sUrya has the prakAsha as his 
nature so brahman without the aid of any external source has the svabhAva 
of sarvajnatva and with this nature only he 'first' thinks let me become 
'many'.  So, jnAna of 'many' (sarva) is inherent in eka eva Atma says 
Itareya shruti and shankara continues to say how this eka Atma become many 
or created many without the help of any 'karaNa' (upAdhi). 

If there is no creation, there won't be Ishwara Himself!!

>  It is as good as saying if there is no ring there wont be any gold !! 
No Ishwara means no creation, but saying no creation means no Ishwara is 
like saying no mumukshu means no brahma :-)) 

> Hence, IMO, shakti, jnAna, consciounsness etc. are svarUpa lakshaNa ( 
> tatastha lakshaNa which is temporary)  of parabrahman which would get
> projected through upAdhi in srushti and with upAdhi (sOpAdhika) the same
> parabrahman is called saguNa, sOpAdhika, kArya brahma.

Yes. It is the same rope that appears as snake.  Only that, while getting
to know the rope one would not insist that snakehood is also inherent in

>  we are talking about the tAdAtmya saMbandha of rope and snake...we dont 
see the pot or chair in place of rope we see something which has the 
sameepa lakshaNa of rope like snake, or crack on the floor or garland. The 
kArya jagat has this sAdrushya with kAraNa brahman.  and kAraNa does not 
create altogether a new one which is not there already in kAraNa is it 
not??  sarvAtma bhAva or Atmaikatva jnAna or samyak jnAna of the jnAni 
would see this sAmAnya behind all these vishesha-s. 

Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!

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