[Advaita-l] Creation by Brahman - only a nimitta - Vishnu Purana - Sridhara Swamin

Kalyan kalyan_kg at yahoo.com
Sat Feb 3 11:51:30 EST 2018


There is nothing in this world which affects something else just by its mere presence. (Before giving examples of sun and snow or master and servant, please think about them. They are not counter examples).

There needs to be interaction between 2 entities A and B for one to cause an effect on the other.

This is a well known issue in Western philosophy (the interaction problem) due to which Cartesian dualism runs into problems.

So also, Brahman also by its mere presence cannot cause anything to happen. Moreover, Shankara argues in BSB that Brahman is also the instrumental cause (potter-pot). Hence it would be contrary to say that brahman affects everything passively. If this is true, a mechanism of interaction needs to be proposed and explained.


On Mon, 1/29/18, V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com> wrote:

 Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Creation by Brahman - only a nimitta - Vishnu Purana - Sridhara Swamin
 To: "Kalyan" <kalyan_kg at yahoo.com>, "A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta" <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
 Date: Monday, January 29, 2018, 5:37 PM
 On Mon,
 Jan 29, 2018 at 7:03 PM, Kalyan via Advaita-l <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedan
 ta.org> wrote:
 This is certainly strange. In BSB, Shankara spends
 considerable time arguing that brahman is also the material
 Now all you are saying is that a dependant (on brahman)
 pradhAna is the material cause whereas for sAmkhya, pradhAna
 is independent. (If that is the only difference, wonder why
 so many polemics against the sAmkhyas). This looks like a
 position that of Madhwa/dvaita would be very comfortable
 I expected this kind of
 understanding of the term nimitta  in the post.  What is
 intended by the term 'nimitta maatram' is the
 participation of Brahman is only passive. [ A parallel is
 the term 'sAkShimAtram' in the antaryami brahmana
 3.7.3 bhashyam  देवताकार्यकरणस्य
 हि नियमेन
 स्याताम्  Sridhara Swamin too uses the term
 'sannidhimaatra' .   The objection was: If
 Brahman, in association with rajoguna, is the creator, then
 the effects of rajas, namely activity, misery, etc. will
 apply to Brahman. In reply thereof it is stated that the
 participation of Brahman is only nimittamaatram, by mere
 presence as the consciousness.  This nimitta is not the
 same as 'nimitta kaaranam.'  
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