[Advaita-l] Maya and Sunrise Example

kuntimaddi sadananda kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Sat Jan 25 07:55:03 CST 2014

Suresh - PraNAs

These examples are given to make us understand the adhyaasa or errors  in perception. There are two types of adhyaasa. 1. sa upaadhika and 2. nirupaadika.

The rope/snake and mirage water examples - both are given to illustrate the problem. In the case of rope/snake - the error is praatibhaasika where I seen it as snake while others do not or may not see the snake. snake is projected because of saadrisyam or similarities in terms of attributes. The attributes the senses gather depends on the capacity of the senses and also the associated environmental conditions (light or darkness or semi-darkness) etc. Hence the attributes are either incomplete or inaccurate for my mind to recognize what I see as an object. I project the snake from memory where there is a rope based on the partial attributes. This is subject error of the object perceived. This comes under Jiiva sRiShTi

In the case of miraj water or even sun-rise, there is objective error of the object perceived - the error is vyaavaahaarika. Here the error is not due to incorrect sense perception but due to laws of nature that are beyond the individual control. Hence everybody sees the mirage waters or sun-rise and sun-set. In addition even after shastra says there is no sunrise and sunset, and it is clearly understood, still we see and enjoy the sunrise and sunset. That is the knowledge of the fact does not eliminate the appearances. The same is seeing all the trees moving in opposite direction when only when the train is moving forward. These come under Iswara sRiShTi. 

Both adhyaasas are relevant in advaita. One is the objective error and the other is subjective error.

When I understand that it is rope, then there is no more snake vision. Similarly when I understand that I am Brahman, then there is no samsara or emotional problems due to attachments. Jiiva sRishTi due to likes and dislikes are eliminated. They will not come back just as snake will not come back where the rope is.

On the other hand adhyaasa due to the Iswara sRiShTi  will still be there ever though I understood that it is not real - just as the sun-rise. A jnaani still sees the world of plurality that is different from his local BMI. Yes he understands the plurality is only appearance but not real just as the sun rise or mirage waters or trees running backwards Hence the world is recognized by a jnaani as mithyaa neither real nor unreal since it is experienced - just like sun-rise and sun set. 

Hence both adhyaasas or errors in perception are applicable to understand the truth underlying perceptions.

Hope this helps
Hari Om!

On Sat, 1/25/14, Suresh <mayavaadi at yahoo.com> wrote:

 Subject: [Advaita-l] Maya and Sunrise Example
 To: "Advaita" <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
 Date: Saturday, January 25, 2014, 7:51 AM
 Most people explain maya using the snake-rope example (or
 silver, mirage etc.), but wouldn't the sunrise example be
 better? Rope-snake example leads to the problem: there is an
 error in perception, which is later on corrected. In sunrise
 example, there is no error in perception. According to
 perception - which is never corrected - sun rises, period. 
 Point is, the event called sunrise is false, yet we perceive
 it 100 times out of 100 .... establishing that even if
 perception isn't faulty, it still gives us wrong knowledge.
 Also that if something is perceived, it doesn't necessarily
 have to be true. Sunrise (jagat) is clearly perceived, yet
 it is false. Earth's movement (Brahman) is not perceived,
 yet it is true. 
 So wouldn't the sunrise example be better in explaining
 maya, ignorance, and all the rest? 
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