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prakRiti, mAyA, avidyA

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The following statements

from the bhAShya show that the terms prakRiti, mAyA and avidyA denote the same

phenomenon.

prakRiti is described in the

bhAShyas on the following verses of the gItA as below:

gItA, 7.4—prakRiti, My divine

power called mAyA.

 gItA, 13.20—prakRiti, the cause of

samsAra by being the cause of the body and the senses.

gItA, 4.6—prakRiti, the mAyA of viShNu consisting of the three guNas, under

whose spell the whole world exists, and deluded by which one does not know

one’s own Self, Vasudeva.

gItA, 9.7—prakRiti which

consists of the three guNas.

gItA, 13.19—prakRiti, the power of God which causes the modifications, and

which consists of the three guNas.

The above statements show that

prakRiti and mAyA are the same.

 

gItA, 9.10—prakRiti, My mAyA

consisting of the three guNas and characterized as avidyA (avidyAlakShaNA).

Gita, 13.23—Prakriti, characterized as avidyA. 

 

B.S.

2.1.14--  sarvajnasya Ishvarasya

mAyAshaktiH prakRitiH- prakriti is the power mAya of omniscient Ishvara.

The above statements show that

prakRiti, mAyA and avidyA are the same.

 

In the bhAshya on gItA, 7.14, mAyA is described as ‘that

which deludes all creatures’ (sarvabhUtamohinI).

bhAshya on kaTh. up. 1.3.12—It is indeed by being deluded

by the supreme mAyA that the whole world revolves.

In the bhAshya on gItA, 5.15 it is said that

discriminating wisdom remains covered by ignorance (ajnAnena AvRitam j~nAnam)

and so the non-discriminating people in the world become deluded thus—‘I do; I

make others do; I eat; I make others eat’.

The above statements show that both mAyA and avidyA delude

people into looking upon themselves as performers of action. This shows that

mAyA and avidyA are the same.

 

The

bhAShya on Katha,1.3.14 says—You creatures, who are sleeping in avidyA that has

no beginning, arise. Put an end to the terrible sleep of ajnAna which is the

seed of all evil.

mANDUkya kArikA, 1.16 says that the jIva is sleeping under

the influence of beginningless mAyA.

The above two statements show that avidyA and mAyA are the

same.

 

The bhAshya on mANDUkya kArikA, 1.16 says: The jIva is

under the influence of mAyA which is beginningless and which has the two facets

of non-perception of the Reality and perception of some thing else (as real)”.

Thus it is clearly stated here that mAyA veils the Reality

and projects the unreal.

Thus mAyA is described as having the powers of AvaraNa

(veiling) and vikShepa (projection) like avidyA and so they are the same.

 

mANDUkya kArikA, 3.10— In the bhAshya on this it is said—“

mAyA avidyA tayA pratyupasthApitA”. That is, conjured up by mAyA which is the

same as avidyA. Thus mAyA and avidyA are equated here.

 

mANDUkya kArikA, 3.19— The bhAshya says: “The highest

Reality is differentiated because of 

mAya, like a rope appearing diversely as a snake, a line of water, etc.

kaTha up. 1. 2. 5—The bhAshya on this says that avidyA is

like thick darkness, leading to entanglement in hundreds of fetters, forged by

cravings for sons, cattle, etc. Thus avidyA conceals the real nature of the

individual and deludes him.  

Thus it is seen that both mAyA

and avidyA are described at different places as the power that deludes all

human beings  and makes them ignorant of

their real nature. This shows that mAyA and avidyA are the same.

 

Regards,

S.N.Sastri

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Sastiji - PraNAms

 

Thanks for the exhaustive quotes. I am surprised the Swe. Up quote is missing -

maayantu prakRitim vidyaat.- Unless the quotes are restricted to only to

Bhaashyaas.

 

Hari Om!

Sadananda

 

--- On Tue, 12/1/09, S.N. Sastri <sn.sastri wrote:

 

 

 

 

The following statements from the bhAShya show that the terms prakRiti, mAyA and

avidyA denote the same phenomenon.

prakRiti is described in the bhAShyas on the following verses of the gItA as

below:

gItA, 7.4—prakRiti, My divine power called mAyA.

 gItA, 13.20—prakRiti, the cause of samsAra by being the cause of the body

and the senses.

gItA, 4.6—prakRiti, the mAyA of viShNu consisting of the three guNas, under

whose spell the whole world exists, and deluded by which one does not know

one’s own Self, Vasudeva.

gItA, 9.7—prakRiti which consists of the three guNas.

gItA, 13.19—prakRiti, the power of God which causes the modifications, and

which consists of the three guNas.

The above statements show that prakRiti and mAyA are the same.

 

gItA, 9.10—prakRiti, My mAyA consisting of the three guNas and characterized

as avidyA (avidyAlakShaNA) .

Gita, 13.23—Prakriti, characterized as avidyA. 

B.S. 2.1.14--  sarvajnasya Ishvarasya mAyAshaktiH prakRitiH- prakriti is the

power mAya of omniscient Ishvara.

The above statements show that prakRiti, mAyA and avidyA are the same.

 

In the bhAshya on gItA, 7.14, mAyA is described as ‘that which deludes all

creatures’ (sarvabhUtamohinI) .

bhAshya on kaTh. up. 1.3.12—It is indeed by being deluded by the supreme mAyA

that the whole world revolves.

In the bhAshya on gItA, 5.15 it is said that discriminating wisdom remains

covered by ignorance (ajnAnena AvRitam j~nAnam) and so the non-discriminating

people in the world become deluded thus—‘I do; I make others do; I eat; I

make others eat’.

The above statements show that both mAyA and avidyA delude people into looking

upon themselves as performers of action. This shows that mAyA and avidyA are the

same.

 

The bhAShya on Katha,1.3.14 says—You creatures, who are sleeping in avidyA

that has no beginning, arise. Put an end to the terrible sleep of ajnAna which

is the seed of all evil.

mANDUkya kArikA, 1.16 says that the jIva is sleeping under the influence of

beginningless mAyA.

The above two statements show that avidyA and mAyA are the same.

 

The bhAshya on mANDUkya kArikA, 1.16 says: The jIva is under the influence of

mAyA which is beginningless and which has the two facets of non-perception of

the Reality and perception of some thing else (as real)â€.

Thus it is clearly stated here that mAyA veils the Reality and projects the

unreal.

Thus mAyA is described as having the powers of AvaraNa (veiling) and vikShepa

(projection) like avidyA and so they are the same.

 

mANDUkya kArikA, 3.10— In the bhAshya on this it is said—“ mAyA avidyA

tayA pratyupasthApitA†. That is, conjured up by mAyA which is the same as

avidyA. Thus mAyA and avidyA are equated here.

 

mANDUkya kArikA, 3.19— The bhAshya says: “The highest Reality is

differentiated because of  mAya, like a rope appearing diversely as a snake, a

line of water, etc.

kaTha up. 1. 2. 5—The bhAshya on this says that avidyA is like thick darkness,

leading to entanglement in hundreds of fetters, forged by cravings for sons,

cattle, etc. Thus avidyA conceals the real nature of the individual and deludes

him.  

Thus it is seen that both mAyA and avidyA are described at different places as

the power that deludes all human beings  and makes them ignorant of their real

nature. This shows that mAyA and avidyA are the same.

 

Regards,

S.N.Sastri

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Dear Sada-ji,

I agree that the Sv quote should have been included.

Regards,

S.N.Sastri

 

advaitin , kuntimaddi sadananda <kuntimaddisada

wrote:

>

> Sastiji - PraNAms

>

> Thanks for the exhaustive quotes. I am surprised the Swe. Up quote is missing

- maayantu prakRitim vidyaat.- Unless the quotes are restricted to only to

Bhaashyaas.

>

> Hari Om!

> Sadananda

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praNAms Respected Sri Sastri prabhuji

Hare Krishna

 

I think two more bhAshya vAkya-s also

you could have quoted in support of mAya = avidyA.

 

(a) avidyAtmikA hi beeja shaktihi

avyaktashabda nirdeshya (sUtra 1.4.3)

 

and another more vivid one in IshAvAsya's

12th maNtra :

 

(b) tasyA anyA asaMbhutihi prakrutiH

kAraNaM avidyA, avyAkrutAkhyA.....

 

Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!

bhaskar

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SrI SAstri-ji,

sAshTAnga danDa praNAmaH!

 

Let me add my two cents to your exhaustive list,

 

Brahma sUtra bhAshya. 1.3.19.

 

Eka Eva paramESvaraH kUTasthanityO vijnAnadhAtur avidyayA mAyayA mAyA

vivat anEkadhA vibhavyatE, nAnyO vijnAna dhAturasti iti.

 

Only one highest Lord ever unchanging, whose substance is cognition,

and who, by means of avidyA, manifests himself in various ways, just

as a Magician appears in different shapes by means of his magical power.

 

Brahma sUtra bhAshya. 1.4.3.(I believe, this reference can clear all the

confusion)

 

The existence of such a causal potentiality renders it moreover

possible that the released souls should not enter on new courses of

existence, as it is destroyed by perfect knowledge. For that causal

potentiality is of the nature of *Nescience*; it is rightly denoted by

the term 'undeveloped;' it has the highest Lord for its substratum; it

is of the nature of an illusion; it is a universal sleep in which are

lying the transmigrating souls destitute for the time of the

consciousness of their individual character. This undeveloped

principle is sometimes denoted by the term AkAsa, ether; so, for

instance, in the passage, " In that Imperishable then, O gArgI, the

ether is woven like warp and woof " (Bri. Up. III, 8, 11). Sometimes,

again, it is denoted by the term akshara, the Imperishable; so, for

instance (Mu.Up.II.1.2), " Higher, than the high Imperishable. "

Sometimes it is spoken of as MAyA, illusion; so, for instance (Sve.Up.IV.10),

" Know then Prakriti is mAyA, and the great Lord he who is affected with mAyA. "

For mAyA is properly called undeveloped or

non-manifested since it cannot be defined either as that which is or

that which is not.

 

==========================

 

advaitin , " S.N. Sastri " <sn.sastri wrote:

>

> The following statements from the bhAShya show that the terms prakRiti, mAyA

> and avidyA denote the same phenomenon.

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Dear Sampat-ji,

Nice to hear from you after such a long time.

Thanks for the additional quotes.

Best wishes,

S.N.Sastri

 

advaitin , " paramahamsa " <paramahamsavivekananda

wrote:

>

> SrI SAstri-ji,

> sAshTAnga danDa praNAmaH!

>

> Let me add my two cents to your exhaustive list,

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Hari

OM~

Sri

Sampath ji,

 Maya – Avidya distinction

is clearly explained by Anandagiri in his Nyaya Nirnaya [i.iv.3] where he says ‘Maya

avidyayor bhedhAt - Isvarasya Maya-asrayatvam; jivAnAm avidyA-asrayata iti’,

clearly Isvara Sakti is identified with Maya and the Jiva bhija Sakti is

Nescience. The unity again I insist is only with their essential generic ‘Anirvacaniyatva’

and they are not synonymous in any other sense. Elsewhere, Sankara makes a

normative formulation for speculating upon the concept of identity; where he

says ‘The identity of a thing cannot be established merely from the similarity

of the order of treatment’ – ‘krama mAtra sAmAnyAt samAna artha pratipatti na’

iti. In this sense your cited reference reveals ‘krama mAtra sAmAnyaM’ ie., similarity-in

mere order of treatment which is not identity. I strongly advocate that

Advaitins contend Maya and Avidya being similar but not idenitical.

 With Narayana Smrti,-- Devanathan.JGraduate Student,Centre for the Study of Religion,

Jackman Humanities Building,170 St. George Street, floor 3,Toronto, Ontario M5R 2M8.Residence:607-3400 Keele St.Toronto, ONM3J 1L7Phone - 416-543-4585

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Maya – Avidya distinction is clearly explained by Anandagiriin his Nyaya Nirnaya [i.iv.3] where he says ‘Maya avidyayor bhedhAt -Isvarasya Maya-asrayatvam; jivAnAm avidyA-asrayata iti’, clearly IsvaraSakti is identified with Maya and the Jiva bhija Sakti is Nescience. Theunity again I insist is only with their essential generic ‘Anirvacaniyatva’and they are not synonymous in any other sense. praNAms Sri Devanathan prabhujiHare KrishnaThanks for taking this issue on hand. As you haverightly mentioned avidyA is jeeva daurbalya and it has an end ( 'end' inthe sense, it is realization of non-existence of avidyA at any point oftime). However, from the empirical standpoint there are dealingssuch as vidyA and avidyA. And this duality not only restricted toexternal things but also about the true nature of the self. So, inthis jagat, vidyAvidyA vyavahAra is called as mAya, which in the 'realsense' that which is not really there but appears as if it is there!! Inthis sense we have to understand avidyA as mAya or vice verse whereverthere is seeming identity in bhAshya vAkya-s. Since mAya is avidyAkruta, sometimes mAyA also called as avidyA & avidyA as mAya insecondary sense coz. vidyA and avidyA are regarded as a function of themind and are included in the world of nAma & rUpa i.e. mAyA. It isin this spirit only shankAra calls prakruti or avyaktA as avidyA in sUtra1.4.3. When there is svarUpAjnAna (avidyA) then only thereappears multifarious jagat in the form mAyA. So, here shankara callsavyakta or prakruti as avidyA in a secondary sense since mAya is kevalaavidyAkalpita. It is just like calling a 'bag' as 'clothes', sincethat bag is full of clothes. So, IMHO, avyAktA is avidyA in 1.4.3 is tobe understood that the ignorance (avidyA) is not manifested (avyakta) forthe common man though there is an influence of avidyA in each & everydealing...He does not know that he is in the clutches of the ignorance & he thinks that he is the ONLY smartest person available under thesky :-)) For him, the anAdi avidyA is 'avyakta'...This is what shankaratoo explains in the above sUtra : yada tu jeeva mahAn & the subsequentsentences :-))Hari Hari Hari Bol!!!bhaskar

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Namaste Learned Members,

 

The topic of 'avidyA' in Advaita has been widely discussed and studied

by a cross-section of interested persons.  In this connection a paper

produced by Dr. Martha Doherty is presented to the members of this

list for academic purposes. The pdf file of 33 pages is being uploaded

to the following temporary location.  Members may study the document

to get to know the various viewpoints on the topic.

 

http://download.yousendit.com/Z01QMWZObThVbThLSkE9PQ

 

Note: The above link will expire in 6 more days.

 

Regards

Ramakrishna

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Dear Sri Sastri ji and other learned members,

 

Namaste.

 

 

> Thus it is seen that both mAyA and avidyA are described at different places as

> the power that deludes all human beings  and makes them ignorant of their real

> nature. This shows that mAyA and avidyA are the same.

 

In your post the above lines were found. In this connection I like to

discuss the doubt which I get.

 

Having the same effects, does it mean that the causes are also same?

Maya and avidya have the same effect on all the beings. Does it mean

that they are synonymous? or identical?? Please clarify.

 

With regards,

Sundaram.

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Dear Sundaram-ji,

This is a strange question. Conclusions in Vedanta are not based on such

analogies. If you study the place of mAyA and avidyA in advaita vedAnta such a

question will not arise. What I have said is not from my own imagination. It is

the view of some advaita AchAryas.

Best wishes,

S.N.Sastri

 

advaitin , Sundaram Seshadri <seshadri.sundaram

wrote:

>

> Dear Sri Sastri ji and other learned members,

>

> Namaste.

>

>

> > Thus it is seen that both mAyA and avidyA are described at different places

as

> > the power that deludes all human beings  and makes them ignorant of their

real > nature. This shows that mAyA and avidyA are the same.

>

> In your post the above lines were found. In this connection I like to

> discuss the doubt which I get.

>

> Having the same effects, does it mean that the causes are also same?

> Maya and avidya have the same effect on all the beings. Does it mean

> that they are synonymous? or identical?? Please clarify.

>

> With regards,

> Sundaram.

>

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NamasteHere is a response by someone from the order of Satchidanandendra Swamiji to Dr Marthaji's paper. Was interesting to read his/her response as well. Here is the link: http://www.scribd.com/doc/6771914/MarthaDoherty-Review

Kathirasan 2009/12/10 Ramakrishna Upadrasta <uramakrishna

 

 

 

 

 

Namaste Learned Members,

 

The topic of 'avidyA' in Advaita has been widely discussed and studied

by a cross-section of interested persons.  In this connection a paper

produced by Dr. Martha Doherty is presented to the members of this

list for academic purposes. The pdf file of 33 pages is being uploaded

to the following temporary location.  Members may study the document

to get to know the various viewpoints on the topic.

 

http://download.yousendit.com/Z01QMWZObThVbThLSkE9PQ

 

Note: The above link will expire in 6 more days.

 

Regards

Ramakrishna

 

 

 

 

-- Kathirasan

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