[Advaita-l] Is Brahman understood as vyakti by Dvaitins?

Srinath Vedagarbha svedagarbha at gmail.com
Fri Mar 1 14:28:46 EST 2019

Sri. Sadananda-ji

On Thu, Feb 14, 2019 at 8:43 PM kuntimaddi sadananda <
kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com> wrote:

> Srinathji - PraNAms
> Enjoyed reading your post,  presenting Dwaitin perspective.

Thank you so much for reading and appreciating.

> There are bheda vakyaas as well as abheda vaakyas in the shruti -

The words 'dvaita' and 'advaita' are originally from upanishats. So, the
meanings of these words are to be understood in the same way as those
upanishats have used them. 'advaita' or 'adviteeya' is used to indicate
Parabrahman. 'dvaita' is used to indicate this world, or 'bhEdavajjagat'.

Every Vedaanta school of thought, tries to explain Parabrahman, this world,
the relationship between the two, etc etc.. So, it is inappropriate to call
any one school as advaita or dvaita. To translate them as monistic and
dualistic and go with the popular notion that Madhva taught dvaita or
duality is erroneous.

Madhva's one and only aim is to understand Brahman strictly in the capacity
of Its being presented by Veda. So it is not correct to think that he
rebelled against a position that may be called
Advaita and supported a position that may be called Dvaita. He did neither.
He had no interest in any idea that falls outside Veda. If you study
Madhva's works, you will come across passages such as

"anyathA pratyayO dvaitam ....harihi advaitaha" - (MahAbhArata tAtparya
nirNaya) ( dvaita is wrong knowledge. .... Parabrahman is advaita).

"ekam tu shubhamuddishTam ashubham dvaitamuchyate" - (BhAgavatha tAtparya)
( One is the sign of Good ; evil is taken to be dvaita ).

"paramArtha apEkshayA advaitam" ( Brahman is advaita in the sense that It
is the Highest )

One may ask, in spite of the above, then how come Acharya Shankara's school
gets the name advaita? and Acharya Madhva's school gets the name dvaita?

In the interest of safeguarding the Truth i.e., Brahman as the Highest,
AchArya Madhva shows that to speak of the non-duality of Brahman and
individual self which is named "advaita" by others, is non-vEdic and it is
at the very outset of thinking to negate Brahman Itself.  In illustrating
this point, Acharya Madhva uses the term 'dvaita' strictly in the sense that
Brahman as the Highest is distinguished from the world. Thus, the use of
the term "dvaita" is only a polemic interest. But to take this fact as the
proof for dualism or pluralism is a mistake committed against the language

One ought rather to see that the negation of the non-duality helps the
formation of the concept of Brahman as the Highest. Unless Brahman as
Brahman is distinguished from all that It is not, It can not be recognized
to be the highest. Unless it is recognized to be the highest, there can not
be a serious attempt to study It, abandoning at the same time interest in
things that fall short of It.

So, the fact of refuting non-duality in the name of dvaita, does not
necessarily imply that he is opposed to the upanishadic term "advaita"
itself and he supported dvaita against Veda.

A serious student of shAstra should keep all this in mind, while studying
school of Madhva.


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