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Four schools of Buddhism refuted by Vedanta-sutra
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By Suhotra Prabhu
Srila Vyasadeva, being tri-kala-jna, foresaw 5000 years ago the rise of Buddhism . Therefore in his Vedanta -sutra (second adhyaya, pada two) he encapsulated a description and a refutation of each of the four main schools of Buddhist philosophy that would flourish in India after the Buddha departed the material world .
What follows is an excerpt from a study guide to Srimad-Bhagavatam based on Vedanta -sutra . Since the Bhagavatam is Vyasadeva's own commentary on Vedanta -sutra , the verses of the Bhagavatam are philosophically linked to the sutras . This study guide therefore follows the form of Vedanta philosophy . The specific excerpt that follows is from Chapter 6 of the study guide. It deals with the the Vedantic refutations of the doctrines of the four Buddhist schools.
That which appears in CAPITALS is a summarization of Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana's Govinda-bhasya commentary on the sutras dealing with Buddhism . The sutras themselves are parenthetically indicated by their number (adhyaya, pada, sutra ). They are followed by Srimad Bhagavatam verses (Sanskrit , word meanings and translation) that explain the sutras .
WITHIN BUDDHISM, THERE ARE FOUR DOCTRINAL SCHOOLS:
1) VAIBHASIKA - DIRECT REALISM
2) SAUTRANTIKA - REPRESENTATIONALISM
(= Hinayana )
3) YOGACARA OR VIJNANAVADA - SUBJECTIVE IDEALISM
4) MADHYAMIKA OR SUNYAVADA - VOIDISM
(= Mahayana )
THE FIRST TWO SCHOOLS DIVIDE THE MATERIAL WORLD INTO TWO CATEGORIES OF PHENOMENA: PHYSICAL AND MENTAL (OR EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL). UNDER THESE CATEGORIES ARE LISTED FIVE 'SKANDHAS.' ONE SKANDHA, CALLED RUPA (INCLUDING THE ELEMENTS EARTH, WATER, FIRE, AIR AND THE FORMS THAT ARE CONSTRUCTED OF THESE), COMPRISES ALL PHYSICAL PHENOMENA. THE OTHER FOUR SKANDHAS COMPRISE MENTAL PHENOMENA. THEY ARE: VIJNANA (THE STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS THAT IS THE EGO); VEDANA (PERCEPTION OF PLEASURE AND PAIN); SANJNA (NAMES AND WORDS); AND SAMSKARA (EMOTIONAL IMPRESSIONS LIKE HATRED, LOVE, ETC.). NOTHING EXISTS BEYOND THESE CATEGORIES, ACCORDING TO THE VAIBHASIKA AND SAUTRANTIKA BUDDHISTS.
EVEN IF THE VALIDITY OF THESE CATEGORIES IS ACCEPTED, THEY STILL DO NOT ACCOUNT FOR EVERYTHING IN THE UNIVERSE, FOR THE SPIRITUAL NATURE OF THE SUPERSOUL AND THE LIVING ENTITIES IS LEFT OUT. (Vs. 2.2.18)
sva-krta-vicitra-yonisu visann iva hetutaya taratamatas cakassy anala-vat sva-krtanukrtih atha vitathasv amusv avitatham tava dhama samam viraja-dhiyo 'nuyanty abhivipanyava eka-rasam
sva - by Yourself; krta - created; vicitra - variegated; yonisu - within the species of life ; visan - entering; iva - apparently; hetutaya - as their motivation; taratamatah - according to hierarchies; cakassi - You become visible ; anala-vat - like fire; sva - Your own; krta - creation; anukrtih - imitating; atha - therefore; vitathasu - unreal; amusu - among these (various species); anitatham - not unreal; tava - Your; dhama - manifestation; samam - undifferentiated; viraja - spotless; dhiyah - whose minds ; anuyanti - understand; abhivipanyavah - those who are free from all material entanglements (pana); eka-rasam - unchanging.
Apparently entering among the variegated species of living beings You have created, You inspire them to act, manifesting Yourself according to their higher and lower positions, just as fire manifests differently according to the shape of what it burns. Therefore those of spotless intelligence, who are altogether free from material attachments, realize Your undifferentiated, unchanging Self to be the permanent reality among all these impermanent life forms.
bhayam dvitiyabhinivesatah syad isad apetasya vipaiyayo'smrtih tan-mayayato budha abhajet tam bhaktyaikayesam guru -devatatma
bhayam - fear: dvitiya - in something seeming to be other than the Lord ; abhinivesatah - because of absorption; syat - it will arise; isat - from the Supreme Lord ; apetasya - for one who has turned away; viparyayah - misidentification; asmrtih - forgetfulness; tat - of the Lord ; mayaya - by the illusory energy; atah - therefore; budhah - an intelligent person; abhajet - should worship fully; tam - Him; bhaktya - with devotion; ekaya - - unalloyed; isam - the Lord ; guru -devata -atma - one who sees his own spiritual master as his lord and very soul .
When the living entity is attracted by the material energy, which is separate from Krsna, he is overpowered by fear. Because he is separated from the Supreme Personality of Godhead by the material energy, his conception of life is reversed. In other words, instead of being the eternal servant of Krsna, he becomes Krsna's competitor. This is called viparyayo'smrtih. To nullify this mistake, one who is actually learned and advanced worships the Supreme Personality of Godhead as his spiritual master , worshipful Deity and source of life . He thus worships the Lord by the process of unalloyed devotional service.
atha baddhasya muktasya vailaksanyam vadami te viruddha-dharminos tata sthitayor eka-dharmini
atha - thus; baddhasya - of the conditioned soul ; muktasya - of the liberated Personality of Godhead; vailaksyanam - different characteristics; vadami - I will now speak; te - unto you; viruddha - opposing; dharminoh - whose two natures; tata - My dear Uddhava; sthitayoh - of the two who are situated; eka-dharmini - in the one body which manifests their different characteristics.
Thus, my dear Uddhava, in the same material body we find opposing characteristics, such as great happiness and misery. That is because both the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is eternally liberated, as well as the conditioned soul are within the body . I shall now speak to you about their different characteristics.
suparnav etau sadrsau sakhayay yadrcchayaitau krta-nidau ca vrkse ekas tayoh khadati pippalannam anyo niranno 'pi balena bhuyan
suparnau - two birds; etau - these; sadrsau - similar; sakhayau - friends; yadrcchaya - by chance; etau - these two; krta - made; nidau - a nest; ca - and; vrkse - in a tree ; ekah - one; tayoh - of the two; khadati - in eating; pippala - of the tree ; annam - the fruits; anyah - the other; nirannah - not eating; api - although; balena - by strength; bhuyan - He is superior.
By chance, two birds have made a nest together in the same tree . The two birds are friends and are of a similar nature. One of them, however, is eating the fruits of the tree , whereas the other, who does not eat the fruits, is in a superior position due to His potency.
atmanam - Himself; anyam - the other; ca - also; sah - He; veda - knows; vidvan - being omniscient ; apippala-adah - not eating the fruits of the tree ; na - not; tu - but; pappala-adah - the one who is eating the fruits of the tree ; yah - who; avidyaya - with ignorance ; yuk - fulled; sah - he; tu - indeed; nitya - eternally; baddhah - conditioned; vidya -mayah - full of perfect knowledge ; yah - who; sah - he; tu - indeed; nitya - eternally; muktah - liberated.
The bird who does not eat the fruits of the tree is the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who by His omniscience perfectly understands His own position and that of the conditioned living entity, represented by the eating bird. That living entity, on the other hand, does not understand himself or the Lord . He is covered by ignorance and is thus called eternally conditioned, whereas the Personality of Godhead, being full of perfect knowledge , is eternally liberated.
deha-stho 'pi na deha-stho vidvan svapnad yathotthitah adeha-stho 'pi deha-sthah kumatih svapna-drg-yatha
deha - in the material body ; sthah - situated; api - although; na - not; deha - in the body ; sthah - situated; vidvan - an enlightened person; svapnat - from a dream ; yatha - just as; utthitah - having risen; adeha - not in the body ; sthah - situated; api - although; deha - in the body ; sthah - situated; ku-matih - a foolish person; svapna - a dream ; drk - seeing; yatha - just as.
One who is enlightened in self -realization , although living within the material body , sees himself as transcendental to the body , just as one who has arisen from a dream gives up identification with the dream body . A foolish person, however, although not identical with his material body but transcendental to it, thinks himself to be situated in the body , just as one who is dreaming sees himself as situated in an imaginary body .
OBJECTION: THE STARTING POINT OF PSYCHOPHYSICAL PHENOMENA IS NOT SPIRITUAL OR CONSCIOUS. THE STARTING POINT IS IGNORANCE (AVIDYA). IGNORANCE SETS INTO MOTION AN EVER-TURNING CAUSAL CYCLE OF TWELVE PHASES: 1) PAST IMPRESSIONS (SAMSKARAS), 2) INITIAL AWARENESS (VIJNANA), 3) THE PSYCHOPHYSICAL ORGANISM (NAMARUPA), 4) THE SIX ORGANS OF COGNITION (SADAYATANA), 5) THE CONTACT OF THE SENSES WITH THEIR OBJECTS (SPARSA), 6) PREVIOUS SENSE EXPERIENCE (VEDANA), 7) THIRST TO ENJOY (TRSNA), 8) MENTAL ATTACHMENT (UPADANA), 9) THE WILL TO BE (BHAVA), 10) BIRTH (JATI), 11) OLD AGE AND DEATH (JARAMARANA), AND 12) IGNORANCE AGAIN.
REPLY: THESE TWELVE ARE ONLY SECONDARY CAUSES. (Vs. 2.2.19)
gaty-ukty-utsargopadanam ananda-sparsa-laksanam asvada-struty-avaghranam aham sarvendriyendriyam
gati - movement of the legs (walking, running, etc.); ukti - speech ; utsarga - evacuation; upadanam - accepting with the hands; ananda - the material pleasure of the sex organs; sparsa - touch; laksanam - sight ; asvada - taste; sruti - hearing ; avaghranam - smell; aham - I am; sarva-indriya - of all the senses ; indriyam - the potency to experience their objects.
I am the functions of the five working senses - the legs, speech , anus, hands and sex organs - as well as those of the five knowledge -acquiring senses - touch, sight , taste, hearing and smell. I am also the potency by which each of the senses experiences its particular sense object.
prithivi vayur akasa apo jyotir aham mahan vikarah puruso 'vyaktam rajah sattvam tamah param aham etat prasankhyanam jnanam tattva-vinisciayah
prithivi - the subtle form of earth , aroma; vayuh - the subtle form of air, touch; akasah - the subtle form of sky, sound ; apah - the subtle form of water, taste; jyotih - the subtle form of fire, form; aham - false ego; mahan - the mahat-tattva; vikarah - the sixteen elements (earth , water, fire, air, and sky, the five working senses , the five knowledge -acquiring senses and the mind ); purusah - the living entity; avyaktam - material nature, prakrti; rajah - the mode of passion ; sattvam - the mode of goodness; tamah - the mode of ignorance ; param - the Supreme Lord ; aham - I am; etat - this; prasankhyanam - all that has been enumerated; jnanam - knowledge of the above-mentioned elements by individual symptoms; tattva-viniscayah - steady conviction, which is the fruit of knowledge .
I am form, taste, aroma, touch, and sound ; false ego; the mahat-tattva; earth , water, fire, air and sky; the living entity; material nature; the modes of goodness, passion and ignorance ; and the transcendental Lord . All these items, along with knowledge of their individual symptoms and the steady conviction that results from this knowledge , represents Me.
BUDDHISTS ADHERE TO A DOCTRINE OF EVER-CHANGING EQUILIBRIUM, IN WHICH AN EFFECT IS SAID TO EXIST ONLY WHEN ITS CAUSE HAS CEASED TO EXIST (E.G. A TREE IS ONLY WHEN THE SEED IS NO LONGER). THAT EFFECT WILL CEASE TO EXIST AS SOON AS IT BECOMES THE CAUSE OF ANOTHER EFFECT. SUCH CHANGE TAKES PLACE EVERYWHERE AT EVERY MOMENT. THUS PHYSICAL AND MENTAL EXISTENCE IS BUT A STREAM OF COROLLARY EVENTS THAT FLASH BY LIKE THE FRAMES OF A MOTION PICTURE FILM. ACCORDINGLY, AVIDYA SIMPLY APPEARS AND DISAPPEARS, TO BE FOLLOWED BY THE APPEARANCE AND DISAPPEARANCE OF THE SAMSKARAS, VIJNANA, ETC., ONE AFTER ANOTHER.
BUT EVER-CHANGING EQUILIBRIUM FORBIDS ANY PERMANENT GOVERNING PRINCIPLE AROUND WHICH THE TWELVE PHASES OF CAUSATION MAY REVOLVE. THE CYCLE OF TWELVE CAUSES IS THUS LIKE A WHEEL OF TWELVE SPOKES THAT HAS NO AXLE ON WHICH TO TURN.
IF THERE IS NO FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE BEHIND THE TWELVE PHASES, WHY DO THE BUDDHISTS DESCRIBE THEM AS PROGRESSING IN A SET ORDER? (Vs. 2.2.20)
ajasya cakram tv ajayeryamanam manomayam pancadasaram asu tri-nabhi vidyuc-calam asta-nemi yad-aksam ahus tam rtam prapadye
ajasya - of the living being; cakram - the wheel (the cycle of birth and death in this material world ); tu - but; ajaya - by the external energy of the Supreme Lord ; iryamanam - going around with great force; manah-mayam - which is nothing but a mental creation depending chiefly on the mind ; pancadasa - fifteen; aram - possessing spokes; asu - very quick; tri-nabhi - having three naves (the three modes of material nature); vidyut - like electricity; calam - moving; asta-nemi - made of eight fellies (the eight external energies of the Lord - bhumir apo 'nalo vayuh, etc.); yat - who; aksam - the hub; ahuh - they say; tam - unto Him; rtam - the fact; prapadye - let us offer our respectful obeisances.
In the cycle of material activities, the material body resembles the wheel of a mental chariot. The ten senses [five for working and five for gathering knowledge ] and the five life airs within the body form the fifteen spokes of the chariot's wheel . The three modes of nature [goodness, passion and ignorance ] are its center of activities, and the eight ingredients of nature (earth , water, fire, air, sky, mind , intelligence and false ego] comprise the rim of the wheel . The external, material energy moves this wheel like electrical energy. Thus the wheel revolves very quickly around its hub or central support, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is the Supersoul and the ultimate truth . We offer our respectful obeisances unto Him.
THE SUBSTRATUM OF CAUSATION CANNOT BE NOTHINGNESS. IF IT WERE, THEN ANYTHING WOULD MANIFEST FROM ANYWHERE AT ANY TIME. POSITING NOTHINGNESS AS THE ULTIMATE SUBSTRATUM OF EVERYTHING WOULD ALSO VIOLATE EVER-CHANGING EQUILIBRIUM - FOR THEN NOTHINGNESS ITSELF WOULD BE AN UNINTERRUPTED CONSTANT. (Vs. 2.2.21)
kah - who; iha - in this world ; nu - indeed; veda - knows; bata - ah; avara - - recent; janma - whose birth; layah - and annihilation; agra - saram; who came first; yatah - from whom; udagat - arose; rsih - the learned sage, Brahma ; yam anplanets); tarhi - at that time; na - no; sat - gross matter; na - no; ca - also; asat - subtle matter; ubhayam - that which is comprised of both (namely, the material bodies ); na ca - nor; kala - of time; javah - the flow; kim api na - none at all; tatra - there; sastram - authoritative scripture ; avakrsya - withdrawing; sayita - (the Supreme Lord ) lies down; yada - when.
Everyone in this world has recently been born and will soon die. So how can anyone here know Him who existed prior to everything else and who gave rise to to the first learned sage, Brahma , and all subsequent demigods, both lesser and greater? When He lies down and withdraws everything within Himself, nothing else remains - no gross or subtle matter or bodies composed of these, no force of time or revealed scripture .
sthira-cara-jatayah syur ajayottha-nimitta-yujo vihara udiksaya yadi parasya vimukta tatah na hi paramasya kascid aparo na paras ca bhaved viyata ivapadasya tava sunya-tulam dadhatah
sthira - stationary; cara - and moving; jatayah - species of life ; syuh - become manifest; ajaya - with the material energy; uttha - awakened ; nimitta - their motivations for activity (and the subtle bodies activated by such); yujah - assuming; viharah - sport; udiksaya - by Your brief glance; yadi - if; parasya - of Him who is aloof; vimukta - O eternally liberated one; tatah - from her; na - not; hi - indeed; paramasya - for the supreme; kascit - anyone; aparah - not foreign; na - nor; parah - foreign; ca - also; bhavet - can be; viyatah - for the ethereal sky; iva - as if; apadasya - which has no perceptible qualities; tava - for You; sunya - to a void; tulam - a resemblance; dadhatah - who takes on.
O eternally liberated, transcendental Lord , Your material energy causes the various moving and nonmoving species of life to appear by activating their material desires , but only when and if You sport with her by briefly glancing at her. You, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, see no one as an intimate friend and no one as a stranger, just as the ethereal sky has no connection with perceptible qualities. In this sense You resemble a void.
THE BUDDHIST THEORY OF 'NIRODHA' (TOTAL ANNIHILATION) IS FALSE. THERE IS NO ULTIMATE ANNHILATION OF ANYTHING, BECAUSE THE SUBSTANCE (VASTU) OF ALL THINGS IS PERMANENT, THOUGH IT IS SUBJECT TO TRANSFORMATION. (Vs. 2.2.22)
idam - this; hi - all; visvam - cosmos; bhagavan - the Supreme Lord ; iva - almost the same; itarah - different from; yatah - from whom; jagat - the worlds ; sthana - exist; nirodha - annihilation; sambhavah - creation; tat hi - all about; svayam - personally; veda - know; bhavan - your good self ; tatha api - still; te - unto you; pradesa-matram - a synopsis only; bhavatah - unto you; pradarsitam - explained.
The Supreme Lord , Personality of Godhead, is Himself this cosmos, and still He is aloof from it. From Him only has this cosmic manifestation emanated, in Him it rests, and unto Him it enters after annihilation. Your good self knows all about this. I have given only a synopsis.
visva - of the whole universe ; udbhava - of the creation; sthana - of the maintenance; nirodha - of the annihilation; karma - these activities; te - of You (O dear Lord ); hi - indeed; akartuh - aloof; angikrtam - still accepted by the Vedic literature; api - although; apavrtah - untouched by all these activities; yuktam - befitting; na - not; citram - wonderful; tvayi - in You; karya-karane - the original cause of all effects; sarva-atmani - in all respects; vyatirikte - set apart; ca - also; vastutah - the original substance.
O Lord , although You are completely detached from the creation, maintenance and annihilation (...). We do not wonder at this, for Your inconceivable energies perfectly qualify You to be the cause of all causes. You are the active principle in everything, although You are separate from everything. Thus we can realize that everything is happening because of Your inconceivable energy.
THE BUDDHISTS DEFINE LIBERATION AS THE TOTAL ANNIHILATION OF THE CAUSAL CYCLE OF TWELVE PHASES. THEY SPEAK OF 'PRATISANKHYA- NIRODHA,' A FORM OF ANNIHILATION IN WHICH CONSCIOUS WILL TAKES PART, AND 'APRATISANKHYA-NIRODHA,' WHICH OCCURS WITHOUT CONSCIOUS EFFORT. IF LIBERATION IS TO BE ACHIEVED BY THE FIRST NIRODHA, THEN WHAT IS THE USE OF THE SECOND CONCEPTION OF NIRODHA? AND IF LIBERATION IS TO BE ACHIEVED BY THE SECOND NIRODHA, WHAT IS THE USE OF THE DISCIPLINARY AND MEDITATIONAL EFFORTS PRACTICED BY BUDDHISTS TO GET RELEASE FROM THE CAUSAL CYCLE? (Vs. 2.2.23)
nirodho 'syanusayanam atmanah saha saktibhih muktir hitvanyatha rupam sva-rupena vyavasthitih
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nirodhah - the winding up of the cosmic manifestation; asya - of His; anusayanam - the lying down of the purusa incarnation Maha-Visnu in mystic slumber; atmanah - of the living entities; saha - along with; saktibhih - with the energies; muktih - liberation ; hitva - giving up; anyatha - otherwise; rupam - form; sva-rupena - in constitutional form; vyavasthitih - permanent situation.
The merging of the living entity, along with his conditional living tendency, with the changeable gross and subtle material bodies .
adhoksaja - with the Supreme Personality of Godhead, who is beyond the reach of the materialistic mind or experimental knowledge ; alambham - being constantly in contact; iha - in this material world ; asubha - atmanah - whose mind is materially contaminated; saririnah - of a living entity who has accepted a material body ; samsrti - of material existence; cakra - the cycle; satanam - completely stopping; tat - that; brahma -nirvana - connected with the Supreme Brahman , the Absolute Truth ; sukham - transcendental happiness ; viduh - understand; budhah - those who are spiritually advanced; tatah - therefore; bhajadhvam - engage in devotional service; hrdaye - within the core of the heart ; hrt-isvaram - to the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Supersoul within the heart .
The real problem of life is the repetition of birth and death , which is like a wheel rolling repeatedly up and down. This wheel , however, completely stops when one is in touch with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In other words, by the transcen completely liberated from material existence. All learned men know this. Therefore, my dear friends, O sons of the asuras , immediately begin meditating upon and worshiping the Supersoul within everyone's heart .
THE BUDDHISTS DEFINE AKASA (ETHEREAL SPACE) AS A STATE OF NIRODHA. BUT AKASA IS AN ELEMENT OF CREATION. (Vs. 2.2.24)
tamasac ca vikurvanad bhagavad-virya -coditat sabda-matram abhut tasman nabhah srotram tu sabdagam
tamasat - from egoism in ignorance ; ca - and; vikurvanat - undergoing transformation; bhagavat -virya - by the energy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; coditat - impelled; sabda-matram - the subtle element sound ; abhut - was manifested; tasmat - from that; nabhah - ether; srotram - the sense of hearing ; tu - then; sabda-gam - which catches sound .
bhutanam chidra-datrtvam bahir antaram eva ca pranendriyatma-dhisnyatvam nabhaso vrtti-laksanam
bhutanam - of all living entities; chidra-datrtvam - the accommodation of room; bahih - external; antaram - internal; eva - also; ca - and; prana - of the vital air; indriya - the senses ; atma - and the mind ; dhisnyatvam - being the field of activities; nabhasah - of the ethereal element; vrtti - activities; laksanam - characteristics.
The activities and characteristics of the ethereal element can be observed as accommodation for the room for the external and internal existences of all living entities, namely the field of activities of the vital air, the senses and the mind .
THE THEORY OF EVER-CHANGING EQUILIBRIUM IS REFUTED BY THE FACT OF MEMORY. MEMORY DEMONSTRATES CONSCIOUSNESS AS THE CONSTANT FACTOR BEHIND THE CHANGING APPEARANCES OF MATTER. (Vs. 2.2.25)
samsayo 'tha viparyaso niscayah smrtir eva ca svapa ity ucyate buddher laksanam vrttitah prthak
samsayah - doubt ; atha - then; viparyasah - misapprehension; niscayah - correct apprehension; smrtih - memory ; eva - also; ca - and; svapah - sleep ; iti - thus; ucyate - are said; buddheh - of intelligence; laksanam - characteristics; vrttitah - by their functions; prthak - different.
yatha gandhasya bhumes ca na bhavo vyatirekatah apam rasasya ca yatha tatha buddheh parasya ca
yatha - as; gandhasya - of aroma; bhumeh - of earth ; ca - and; na - no; bhavah - existence; vyatirekatah - separate; apam - of water; rasasya - of taste; ca - and; yatha - as; tatha - so; buddheh - of intelligence; parasya - of consciousness , spirit ; ca - and.
desatah kalato yo 'sav avasthatah svato 'nyatah aviluptavabodhatma sa yujyetajaya katham
desatah - circumstantial; kalatah - by the influence of time; yah - one who; asau - the living entity; avasthatah - by situation; svatah - by dream ; anyatah - by others; avilupta - extinct; avabodha - consciousness ; atma - pure self ; sah - he; yujyeta - engaged; ajaya - with nescience; katham - how is it so.
THE SAUTRANTIKAS ATTEMPT TO EXPLAIN THE PERSISTENCE OF MEMORY BY THEIR DOCTRINE OF REPRESENTATIONALISM. THEY SAY THAT EXTERNAL OBJECTS ARE NOT PERCEIVED AS SUCH. BUT THEY INFLUENCE CONSCIOUSNESS TO REPRESENT THE OBJECTS THROUGH INTERNAL FORMS (IDEAS) THAT ARE CREATED FROM CONSCIOUSNESS ITSELF. THOUGH EXTERNAL OBJECTS VANISH FROM MOMENT TO MOMENT IN THE STREAM OF EVER-CHANGING EQUILIBRIUM, THEY CONTINUE TO EXIST AS IDEAS OR MEMORIES.
IT IS NOT LOGICAL TO POSIT THE PERSISTENCE OF THE NAME, FORM ETC. OF AN EPHEMERAL EXTERNAL OBJECT IN AN INTERNAL REPRESENTATION, BECAUSE THE SUBSTANCE OF CONSCIOUSNESS IS ALSO EPHEMERAL ACCORDING TO BUDDHIST PHILOSOPHY.
IN FACT THERE IS AN INTERNAL REALITY TO ALL EPHEMERAL THINGS, THOUGH THE SAUTRANTIKA DOCTRINE DOES NOT PROPOUND IT. (Vs. 2.2.26)
dharmah-projjhita-kaitavo 'tra paramo nirmatsaranam satam vedyam vastavam atra vastu sivadam tapa-trayonmulanam srimad-bhagavate maha-muni-krte kim va parair isvarah sadyo hrdy avarudhyate 'tra krtibhih susrusubhis tat-ksanat
dharmah - religiosity; projjhita - completely rejected; kaitavah - covered by fruitive intention; atra - herein; paramah - the highest; nirmatsaranam - of the one-hundred-percent pure in heart ; satam - devotees; vedyam - understandable; vastavam - factual; atra - herein; vastu - substance; sivadam - well-being; tapa-traya - threefold miseries; unmulanam - causing uprooting of; srimat - beautiful; bhagavate - the Bhagavata Purana; maha-muni - the great sage (Vyasadeva); krte - having compiled; kim - what is; va - the need; paraih - others; isvarah - the Supreme Lord ; sadyah - at once; hrdi - within the heart ; avarudhyate - become compact; atra - herein; krtibhih - by the pious men; susrusubhih - by culture; tat-ksanat - without delay.
Completely rejecting all religious activities which are materially motivated, this Bhagavata Purana propounds the highest truth , which is understandable by those devotees who are fully pure in heart . The highest truth is reality distinguished from illusion for the welfare of all. Such truth uproots the threefold miseries. This beautiful Bhagavatam, compiled by the great sage Vyasadeva [in his maturity], is sufficient in itself for God realization . What is the need of any other scripture ? As soon as one attentively and submissively hears the message of Bhagavatam, by this culture of knowledge the Supreme Lord is established within his heart .
prakrter evam atmanam avivicyabudhah puman tattvena sparsa-sammudhah samsaram pratipadyate
prakrteh - from material nature; evam - in this way; atmanam - the self ; avivicya - failing to distinguish; abudhah - the unintelligent; puman - person; tattvena - because of thinking (material things) to be real; sparsa - by material contact; sammudhah - completely bewildered; samsaram - the cycle of material existence; pratipadyate - attains.
An unintelligent man, failing to distinguish himself from material nature, thinks nature to be real. By contact with it he becomes completely bewildered and enters into the cycle of material existence.
so 'yam dipo 'rcisam yadvat srotasam tad idam jalam so 'yam puman iti nrnam mrsa gir dhir mrsayusam
sah - this; ayam - the same; dipah - light ; arcisam - of the radiation of a lamp; yadvat - just as; srotasam - of the currents flowing in a river ; tat - that; idam - the same; jalam - water; sah - this; ayam - the same; puman - person; iti - thus; nrnam - of men; mrsa - false; gih - statement; dhih - thought ; mrsa - ayusam - of those who are wasting their life .
Although the illumination of a lamp consists of innumerable rays of light undergoing constant creation, transformation and destruction, a person with illusory intelligence who sees the light for a moment will speak falsely, saying, "This is the light of the lamp." As one observes a flowing river , ever-new water passes by and goes far away, yet a foolish person, observing one point in the river , falsely states, "This is the water of the river ." Similarly, although the material body of a human being is constantly undergoing transformation, those who are simply wasting their lives falsely think and say that each particular stage of the body is the person's real identity.
[The Buddhist concept of ever-changing equilibrium, or conditioned coproduction, Sanskrit "pratitya samutpada", Pali "paticcha samuppada", is refuted in SB 11.22.46-51. It is also refuted by pratyaksa and anumana in the form of OBE and NDE.
Buddhists often tell the story-parable of Zhuangzi and the butterfly. How do we know that we are not dreaming now? Srila Baladeva Vidyabhusana says that there is clear difference between the wakeful state and the dreaming state. Our wakeful perception persists day after day, but dreams do not persist. Somebody can say that this experience of life that we are having is a dream but people do not awaken from wakefulness, they awaken from dreams only.]
IF ALL EXISTENCE IS SIMPLY AN EVER-CHANGING EQUILIBRIUM, THEN THERE COULD BE NO STEADY MOTIVATION TO ATTAIN ANYTHING. A PERSON, HIS DESIRE AND HIS GOAL WOULD BE BUT UNIQUE EVENTS THAT EXIST ONLY FOR A MOMENT, TO BE REPLACED BY A DIFFERENT PERSON, DESIRE AND GOAL IN THE NEXT MOMENT. AS THERE IS NO PERMANENT SUBSTRATUM TO DETERMINE THE ORDER OF EVENTS, RESULTS WOULD APPEAR WITHOUT A REAL CAUSE. THUS IT WOULD BE USELESS TO DIRECT ONE'S EFFORTS TO ATTAIN A RESULT. SIMPLY BY HIS EXISTENCE IN A FORTUITOUS INSTANT OF TIME, A PERSON WHO DOES NOTHING WOULD ATTAIN HIS DESIRED GOAL. YET BUDDHISTS DIRECT THEMSELVES TO THE FUTURE GOAL OF LIBERATION.
THE EXPLANATION OF CAUSE AND EFFECT OF THE VAIBHASIKA AND SAUTRANTIKA DOCTRINES IS CONTRADICTORY. (Vs. 2.2.27)
ekas tvam eva sad asad dvayam advayam ca svarnam krtakrtam iveha na vastu-bhedah ajnanatas tvayi janair vihito vikalpo yasmad guna-vyatikaro nirupadhikasya
ekah - the only one; tvam - Your Lordship; eva - indeed; sat - which is existing, as the effect; asat - which is nonexistent, as the cause; dvayam - both of them; advayam - without duality; ca - and; svarnam - gold; krta - manufactured into different forms; akrtam - the original source of gold (the gold mine); iva - like; iha - in this world ; na - not; vastu-bhedah - difference in the substance; ajnanatah - only because of ignorance ; tvayi - unto You; janaih - by the general mass of people; vihitah - it should be done; vikalpah - differentiation; yasmat - because of; guna-vyatikarah - free from the differences created by the material modes of nature; nirupadhikasya - without any material designation.
My dear Lord , Your Lordship alone is the cause and the effect. Therefore, although You appear to be two, You are the absolute one. As there is no difference between the gold of a golden ornament and the gold in a mine, there is no difference between cause and effect; both of them are the same. Only because of ignorance do people concoct differences and dualities. You are free from material contamination, and since the entire cosmos is caused by You and cannot exist without You, it is an effect of Your transcendental qualities. Thus the conception that Brahman is true and the world false cannot be maintained.
THE YOGACARA OR VIJNANAVADA DOCTRINE IS SUBJECTIVE IDEALISM. ACCORDINGLY, THERE IS NO OBJECTIVE REALITY (I.E. THE EXTERNAL WORLD DOES NOT EXIST). THERE ARE ONLY SUBJECTIVE IDEAS (I.E. THE THOUGHTS ABOUT THE WORLD CONCEIVED BY THE SUBJECT OR INDIVIDUAL). PERCEPTIONS OF THE MATERIAL WORLD ARISE FROM THESE IDEAS AND THEREFORE HAVE NO EXISTENCE APART FROM THOUGHT. IDEAS ARISE FROM DESIRE. THUS 'REALITY' IS ONLY A STATE OF MIND.
BUT IN FACT PERCEPTION CONSISTS OF THREE FACTORS: THE PERCEIVER (ADHYATMA), THE THING PERCEIVED (ADHIBHUTA) AND THE PERCEPTION (ADHIDAIVA). (Vs. 2.2.28)
mamanga maya guna-mayy anekadha vikalpa-buddhis ca gunair vidhatte vaikarikas tri-vidho 'dhyatmam ekam athadhidaivam adhibhutam anyat
mama - My; anga - My dear Uddhava; maya - material energy; guna-mayi - consisting of the three modes; anekadha - manifold; vikalpa - different manifestations; buddhih - and perceptions of these differences; ca - and; gunaih - by the modes; vidhatte - establishes; vaikarakah - the full-blown manifestation of transformations; tri-vidhah - having three aspects; adhyatmam - called adhyatma; ekam - one; atha - and; adhidaivam - adhidaiva; adhibhutam - adhibhuta; anyat - another.
My dear Uddhava, My material energy, comprising three modes and acting through them, manifests the varieties of creation along with varieties of consciousness for perceiving them. The manifest result of material transformation is understood in three aspects: adyatmic, adhidaivic and adhibhautic.
drg rupam arkam vapur atra randhre parasparam sidhyati yah svatah khe atma yad esam aparo ya adyah svayanubhutyakhila- siddha -siddhih
drk - the function of sight (as adhyatma); rupam - visible form (as adhibhuta); arkam - of the sun; vapuh - the partial image (as adhidaiva); atra - in this; randhre - aperture (of the eyeball); parasparam - mutually; sidyati - cause the manifestation of each other; yah - which; svatah - by its own power ; khe - in the sky; atma - the Supersoul; yat - which; esam - of these (three features); aparah - separate; yah - who; adyah - the original cause; svaya - by His own; anubhutya - transcendental experience; akhila - of all; siddha - manifest phenomena ; siddhih - the source of manifestation.
Sight , visible form and the reflected image of the sun within the aperture of the eye all work together to reveal one another. But the original sun standing in the sky is self -manifested. Similarly, the Supreme Soul , the original cause of all entities, who is thus separate from all of them, acts by the illumination of His own transcendental experience as the ultimate source of manifestation of all mutually manifesting objects.
evam tva-adi sravanadi caksur jihvadi nasadi ca citta -yuktam
evam - in the same way; tvak-adi - the skin, the sensation of touch and the demigod of the wind, Vayu; sravana-adi - the ears, the sensation of sound and the demigods of the directions ; caksuh - the eyes (described in the previous verse); jihva-adi - the tongue, the sensation of taste and the god of water, Varuna; nasa-adi - the nose, the sensation of smell and the Asvini-kumaras; ca - also, citta -yuktam - along with consciousness (implying not only conditioned consciousness together with the object of that consciousness and the presiding Deity Vasudeva, but also the mind together with the object of thought and the moon-god Candra, intelligence with the object of intelligence and Lord Brahma , and false ego together with the identification of false ego and Lord Rudra).
Similarly, the sense organs, namely the skin, ears, eyes , tongue, and nose - as well as the functions of the subtle body , namely conditioned consciousness , mind , intelligence and false ego - can all be analyzed in terms of the threefold distinction of sense , object of perception and presiding deity .
atmaparijnana-mayo vivado hy astiti nastiti bhidartha-nistah vyartho 'pi naivoparameta pumsam mattah paravrtta-dhiyam sva-lokat
atma - of the Supreme Soul ; aparijnana-mayah - based on lack of full knowledge ; vivadah - speculative argument; hi - indeed; asti - (this world ) is real; iti - thus saying; na asti - it is not real; iti - thus saying; bhida - material differences; artha-nistah - having as its focus of discussion ; vyartha - worthless; api - although; na - does not; eva - certainly; uparameta - cease; pumsam - for persons; mattah - from Me; paravrtta - who have turned; dhiyam - their attention; sva-lokat - who are nondifferent from them.
The speculative argument of philosopers - "This world is real," "No, it is not real" - is based upon incomplete knowledge of the Supreme Soul and is simply aimed at understanding material dualities. Although such argument is useless, persons who have turned their attention away from Me, their own true Self , are unable to give it up.
YOGACARA BUDDHISTS ARGUE THAT THE PERCEIVABLE WORLD EXISTS IN THE SAME WAY AS A DREAM DOES. BUT A DREAM CONSISTS OF MEMORIES OF WAKEFUL PERCEPTIONS. WAKEFUL PERCEPTIONS PERSIST DAY AFTER DAY, BUT DREAMS, BEING MERE MENTAL IMAGES, DO NOT PERSIST. DREAM IMAGES MAY CHANGE ABRUPTLY. WHEN A PERSON WAKES FROM A DREAM, HE KNOWS IT TO BE UNREAL. BUT PEOPLE DO NOT 'AWAKEN' FROM WAKEFUL PERCEPTIONS IN THE SAME WAY THAT THEY AWAKEN FROM SLEEP. DREAMS AND WAKEFULNESS ARE THEREFORE TWO DIFFERENT STATES OF MATERIAL CONSCIOUSNESS.
STILL, THE VEDIC VERSION IS THAT THE WAKEFUL STATE OF MATERIAL CONSCIOUSNESS IS ALSO A DREAM. BUT IT IS A DREAM CREATED BY THE SUPREME LORD, AS TOO ARE THE DREAMS OF SLEEP. DREAMS, WHETHER IN SLEEP OR THE WAKEFUL STATE, ARE NOT INDEPENDENTLY CREATED BY THE MINDS OF LIVING ENTITIES. (Vs. 2.2.29)
adrstam drstavan nanksed bhutam svapnavad anyatha bhutam bhavad bhavisyac ca suptam sarva-raho-rahah
adrstam - future happiness ; drsta-vat - like direct experience; nankset - becomes vanquished; bhutam - the material existence; svapnavat - like a dream ; anyatha - otherwise; bhutam - which happened in the past; bhavat - present; bhavisyat - future; ca - also; suptam - a dream ; sarva - of all; rahah-rahah - the secret conclusion.
Everything happening within time, which consists of past, present and future, is merely a dream . That is the secret understanding in all Vedic literature.
yatha susuptah puruso visvam pasyati catmani atmanam eka-desa-stham manyate svapna utthitah
evam jagaranadini jiva-sthanani catmanah maya -matrani vijnaya tad-drastaram param smaret
yatha - just as; susuptah - sleeping ; purusah - a person; visvam - the whole universe ; pasyati - perceives; ca - also; atmani - in himself; atmanam - himself; eka-desa-stham - lying down in one place; manyate - he considers; svapne - in the dreaming condition; utthitah - waking up; evam - in this way; jagarana-adini - the states of wakefulness and so on; jiva-sthanani - the living entity's different conditions of existence; ca - also; atmanah - of the Supreme Personality of Godhead; maya -matrani - the exhibitions of the illusory potency; vijnaya - knowing; tat - of them; drastaram - the creator or seer of all such conditions; param - the Supreme; smaret - one should always remember.
When a person is in deep sleep , he dreams and sees in himself many other objects, such as great mountains and rivers or perhaps even the entire universe , although they are far away. Sometimes when one awakens from a dream he sees that he is in a human form, lying in his bed in one place. Then he sees himself, in terms of various conditions, as belonging to a particular nationality, family and so on. All the conditions of deep sleep , dreaming and wakefulness are but energies of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. One should always remember the original creator of these conditions, the Supreme Lord , who is unaffected by them.
jagrat svapnah susuptam va gunato buddhi-vrttayah tasam vilaksano jivah saksitvena viniscitah
jagrat - being awake; svapnah - dreaming; su-suptam - deep sleep ; ca - also; gunatah - caused by the modes of nature; buddhi - of intelligence; vrttayah - the functions; tasam - from such functions; vilaksanah - possessing different characteristics; jivah - the living entity; saksitvena - with the characteristic of being a witness; viniscitah - is ascertained.
Waking, sleeping , and deep sleep are the three functions of the intelligence and are caused by the modes of material nature. The living entity within the body is ascertained to possess characteristics different from these three states and thus remains as a witness to them.
yarhi samsrti-bandho 'yam atma guna-vrtti-dah mayi turye sthito jahyat tyagas tad guna-cetasam
yarhi - whereas; samsrti - of material intelligence or material existence; bandhah - bondage; ayam - this is; atmanah - of the soul ; guna - in the modes of nature; vrtti-dah - that which gives occupations; mayi - in Me; turye - in the fourth element (beyond wakefulness, dreaming and deep sleep ); sthitah - being situated; jahyat - one should give up; tyagah - renunciation ; tat - at that time; gunah - of the material sense objects; cetasam - and of the material mind .
The spirit soul is trapped in the bondage of material intelligence, which awards him constant engagement in the illusory modes of nature. But I am the fourth stage of consciousness , beyond wakefulness, dreaming and deep sleep . Becoming situated in Me, the soul should give up the bondage of material consciousness . At that time, the living entity will automatically renounce the material sense objects and the material mind .
THE YOGACARA DOCTRINE FALSELY CLAIMS THAT THE PERCEPTIONS OF THE MIND ARISE FROM MATERIAL DESIRE. IN FACT THE REVERSE IS TRUE - MATERIAL DESIRE ARISES FROM THE PERCEPTIONS OF THE MIND, I.E. THE CONTEMPLATION OF EXTERNAL SENSE OBJECTS. (Vs. 2.2.31)
manah karma -mayam nrnam indriyaih pancabhir yutam lokal lokam prayaty anya atma tad anuvartate
sri-bhagavan uvaca - the Supreme Personality of Godhead said; manah - the mind ; karma -mayam - shaped by fruitive work; nrnam - of persons; indriyaih - along with the senses ; pancabhih - five; yutam - conjoined; lokat - from one world ; lokan - to another world ; prayati - travels; anyah - separate; atma - the soul ; tat - that mind ; anuvartate - follows.
Lord Krsna said: The material mind of men is shaped by the reactions of fruitive work. Along with the five senses , it travels from one material body to another. The spirit soul , although different from this mind , follows it.
dhyayat - meditating ; manah - the mind ; anu - regularly; visayan - on the sense objects; drstan - seen; va - or; anusrutan - heard from Vedic authority; atha - subsequently; udyat - rising; sidat - dissolving; karma -tantram - bound up to the reactions of fruitive work; smrtih - remembrance; tat anu - after that; samyati - is destroyed.
The mind , bound to the reactions of fruitive work, always meditates on the objects of the senses , both those that are seen in this world and those that are heard about from Vedic authority. Consequently, the mind appears to come into being and to suffer annihilation along with its objects of perception , and thus its ability to distinguish past and future is lost.
arthe hy avidyamane 'pi samsrtir na nivartate dhyayato visayan asya svapne 'narthagamo yatha
arthe - real cause; hi - certainly; avidyamane - not existing; api - although; samsrtih - the material existential condition; na - not; nivartate - does cease; dhyayatah - contemplating; visayan - objects of the senses ; asya - of the living entity; svapne - in a dream ; anartha - of disadvantages; agamah - arrival; yatha - like.
Actually a living entity is transcendental to material existence, but because of his mentality of lording it over material nature, his material existential condition does not cease, and just as in a dream , he is affected by all sorts of disadvantages.
LIKE OTHER DOCTRINES OF BUDDHISM, VIJNANAVADA ADHERES TO THE NOTION OF EVER-CHANGING EQUILIBRIUM. THERE IS THEREFORE NO PERMANENT SUBSTRATUM UPON WHICH DESIRES CAN BE MAINTAINED.
tvam iise jagatas tasthusas ca pranena mukhyena patih prajanam cittasya cittair mana -indriyanam patir mahan bhuta-gunasayesah
tvam - you; iise - actually control; jagatah - of the moving being; tasthusah - of the being that is dull or stationed in one place; ca - and; pranena - by the living force; mukhyena - the origin of all activities; patih - master ; prajanam - of all living entities; cittasya - of the mind ; cittaih - by the consciousness ; manah - of the mind ; indriyanam - and of the two kinds of senses (acting and knowledge -gathering); patih - the master ; mahan - great; bhuta - of the material elements; guna - and the qualities of the material elements; asaya - of desires ; iah - the supreme master .
Your Lordship, being the origin of the life of this material world , is the master and controller of the living entities, both moving and stationary, and you inspire their consciousness . You maintain the mind and the acting and knowledge -acquiring senses , and therefore you are the great controller of all the material elements and their qualities, and you are the controller of all desires .
THE MADHYAMIKA DOCTRINE IS SUNYAVADA OR VOIDISM. IT CLAIMS THAT EXISTENCE ITSELF IS A CONTRADICTION, FOR ACCORDING TO THE BUDDHIST THEORY OF EVER-CHANGING EQUILIBRIUM, ALL THINGS THAT NOW EXIST AROSE FROM THE DESTRUCTION OF OTHER THINGS, JUST AS TREES AROSE FROM NOW-DESTROYED SEEDS. THUS EXISTENCE DOES NOT ARISE FROM ANOTHER EXISTENCE. VOIDISM ARGUES THAT EXISTENCE DOES NOT ARISE OUT OF NONEXISTENCE (ABHAVA) EITHER, JUST AS A TREE CANNOT ARISE FROM A ROASTED SEED. IT FURTHER CLAIMS THAT EXISTENCE DOES NOT ARISE FROM ITSELF, FOR THAT VIEW WOULD SUPPORT THE DOCTRINE OF ATMA (PERMANENT IDENTITY), WHICH THE BUDDHA REJECTED. NOR DOES EXISTENCE ARISE IN ANY OTHER WAY THAT MIGHT BE CONSIDERED. THEREFORE THERE IS NO CREATION. IF THERE IS NO CREATION, THEN THERE IS NO DESTRUCTION. CREATION, DESTRUCTION, CAUSE, EFFECT, BEING AND NON-BEING ARE ALL UNREAL. THE ONLY REALITY IS SUNYA, VOID. VOID REQUIRES NO EXPLANATION OF ORIGIN, FOR IT IS SELF-EXISTENT AND SELF-PROVED.
BUT IN FACT THE VOID THEORY DISPROVES ITSELF, FOR IF ALL THE MEANS OF KNOWLEDGE AND ARGUMENT ARE UNREAL, THEN THE VOID THEORY CANNOT BE ESTABLISHED. (Vs. 2.2.32)
abadhito 'pi hy abhaso yatha vastutaya smrtah durghatatvad aindriyakam tadvad artha-vikalpitam
abadhitah - rejected; api - although; hi - certainly; abhasah - a reflection; yatha - as; vastutaya - a form of reality ; smrtah - accepted; durghatatvat - because of being very difficult to prove the reality ; aindriyakam - knowledge derived from the senses ; tadvat - similarly; artha - reality ; vikalpitam - speculated or doubtful.
Although one may consider the reflection of the sun from a mirror to be false, it has its factual existence. Accordingly, to prove by speculative knowledge that there is no reality would be extremely difficult.