[Advaita-l] Why brahma jnAna is capable of sarva nivritti

Venkatraghavan S agnimile at gmail.com
Wed Mar 29 09:01:18 EDT 2017

Namaste Sri Venkatesh Murthy ji,

I am not sure if that is a dvaitin position. I have heard SvAmi
ParamArthAnanda mention that this is the position of vishishTAdvaitins.
Someone more familiar will have to comment on that.

The focus of the example in advaita siddhi is not on whether dream objects
are satya or not. If you note, the dream person observes dream silver where
dream shell should have been. There, the dream silver is bhrama not because
it is seen in a dream, but because seeing silver where shell is present is
bhrama, whether when dreaming, or when awake.

The scope of the example is in seeing if simultaneous nivritti of bhrama,
bhrama viShaya, bhrama draShTA and draShTA's doSha is possible, which
happens on waking up. It is possible because the adhishThAna of all the
dream objects is the person who sees the dream.

If the objection is because dream objects are real, no nivritti is possible
for them - that goes against common experience. No one wakes up from a
dream where he wins a treasure believing he has won a real treasure.

The reality of any object is determined by the validity of the cognition
with which that object is known. All cognitions are intrinsically valid
until proven otherwise. When the cognition is later falsified, the object
that was known by the wrong cognition is determined to be unreal. In the
case of dream objects, upon waking up, there is knowledge that there are no
external objects corresponding to what was perceived. People dream of
traveling to strange worlds, seeing monsters etc, for which there are no
corresponding objects or events in the waking world. Thus, what was
perceived cannot be externally real objects.

Therefore, even if we assumed God created dream objects, they would have to
be as thoughts within the dreamer's mind. How can the reality of thought be
denied? According to advaita, only that whose existence cannot be denied in
all three periods of time is real. Things that have finite existence, are

Thought by its very nature, has fleeting existence. Thus, it did not exist
before it arises and after it resolves. It can't therefore be the
advaitin's sat.

If it is argued that while it does not have traikAlika abAdhita sat,
thought must have temporary existence - that is, it must exist after its
birth and before its resolution - we would resort to Gaudapada's आदौ अन्ते
च यन्नास्ति वर्तमानेऽपि तत्तथा - that which did not exist in the past and
will not exist in the future cannot be said to exist in the present either.

The hetu is the same as the one used to prove the mithyAtva of objects,
drishyatvAt. Thoughts are known and thus are mithyA.


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