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सूत्रभाष्यार्थतत्त्वविवेचनी: Sugama Sutra Bhashya Tattva Vivechani

सूत्रभाष्यार्थतत्त्वविवेचनी:  Sugama Sutra Bhashya Tattva Vivechani
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Item Code: NZK919
Author: स्वामी सच्चिदानन्देन्द्रसरस्वती (Swami Satchidanandendra Saraswati)
Publisher: Adhyatma Prakashan Karyalaya, Bangalore
Language: Sanskrit Only
Edition: 2016
Pages: 642
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details: 8.5 inch X 5.5 inch
weight of the book: 445 gms


Publisher note

The 'Sutra- Bhashyartha Tattva Vivecani now presented to the public is an original work by Sri Swami Satchidanandendra Saraswati. It is a sequel to the Sugama, the author's famous sub-commentary on the Adhyasa- Bhashya- already published by this Karyalaya, and is uniform in size and get-up with that book.

Sri Swamiji has himself explained in his Introduction the object that he has set before him in writing this new commentary on the jijnasadhikarana-Bhashya- We sincerely believe that this is the first attempt to present S'ankara's Vedanta in all its pristine purity, untarnished by later accretions due to misrepresentations of his commentators and adverse critics. Swamiji's illuminating criticisms of ancient and modern Vedantins of other schools are sure to create a living interest in Vedantic studies for both modern scholars and orthodox pandits.

The Working Committee of the Karyalaya are grateful to Sri Swamiji for having made over the right of publishing this valuable work also as usual- They have been able to bring out this first edition mostly through the financial help of generous souls. Their special thanks in "this connection are due to 1) The Vednntaoionra- Baoqha, mysore, 2) Sri P. Jaya- Vasudeva Sastry, Hubli, 3) Sri S. M. Desai, Kartoar, 4) Sri M. S. Ramanma, mysore, 5) Sri Bhishak Subbo Sastry, Sirpapura of id 6) Sri Aswaitha-Narayana Rao, Shimoga.


The first four Sutras of the S'ariraka Mimamsa of Badarayana, as understood by S'ankara, cover the whole ground-work of Vedanta, and are Therefore well-worth a careful and critical study at the hands of thinkers who wish to make a true estimate of S'ankara's teachings.

The first sutra begins with an exhortation to the earnest student to enter upon an enquiry into the nature of Brahman since the right knowledge of it alone can lead to the highest good or release 'from the bondage of mundane life. The second Sutra describes Brahman as the sole cause of the beginning, sustentation and dissolution of the universe. The third declares that Brahman is Known only through the S'astra or the Upanishads, while the fourth points out that this fact is ascertained from a study of the main purport of all the Upanishads.

The first impression that a cursory reading of askara's Bhashya leaves on an uncritical mind, is that; Badarayana's work is nothing more than system of dogmatic and speculative theology inasmuch as s'ankara not only appeals to an exegetical consideration of various Upanishad passages, but also carries on logical discussions both in the defence of the system he tries to bring out of these sacred texts and i his refutation of the opponent systems. And this impression gains additional strength after a study of the various works belonging to the two conflicting schools of S'ankara's interpreters. For Vacaspati-Misra and Prakas'atman the foremost leaders of these schools, not only hold dia metrically opposite views on important points, doctrinial as wen as exegetical, of Advaita Vedsnta, but are contradicted by representatives of their own individual school, who sometimes differ among themselves.) This leaves the critical student in great doubt as to the exact tenets held by s'ankara no less than to the method employed by him in demonstrating them.

In these circumstances, a new commentary on S'arikara's Bhashyas, especially on the Sutra Bhashya which aims at setting forth the fundamentals of Vedanta, has become an urgent desideratum for all earnest students of S'ankara.

In the new commentary now presented to the public, I have endeavoured to bring out in full relief (1) the method of adhynropa-apavada super-imposition and rescission) which reconciles all apparent contradictions with regard to the Absolute or non-dual Reality; (2) the true nature- of the so-called knowledge of Brahman, and or vedantic reasoning as distinguished from logical reasoning; (3) the functions of the Upanishad text which reveal Brahman or the Highest Reality, and {4} the immediate nature of freedom from worIdly bondage, which accrues to the enlightened soul directly after the fundamental ingorance is dispersed by Vedantic teaching. These and other truths which sankara has been at the pains of exp ounding in unmistakable terms, but have been obscured by the mis-interpretation of commentaries or m is-representation of adverse critics, have all been made to emerge in their true colours, through ,discussions introduced for the purpose or explaining and throwing new light on certain passage in the Bhashya. I hope I shall not be deemed to be hyper-critical or dis-respectful to it names in my endeavour to clear the great sankara of the charge of being a mere dogmatic thelogian or a scholastic thinker, or even a mystic appealing to some special intuition, as he been made out to be by some interpreters or critics belonging to other schools of Vedanta.

I have throughout used S'ankara's own phraseology and line of reasoning as far as possible toshow that his Bhashya presents a system of Vedantic thought backed by a hoary tradition and can stand the test of being a Consistently worked-out philosophy of life based on genuine reason and universal experience, for all times to come, against onslaughts of carping criticism, if only it is not interfered with by officious interpretation. If at least some of my readers feel that I have succeeded in this attempt to a slight extent, and are stimulated to try to improve upon my way of discovering genuine Sankarite vedanta I shall feel amply rewarded.


Publishers’ Note

The Sutra-Bhasbyartha- Tattva-Vivecani,: Part Second, now presented to the public, is like the first part, an original work in Sanskrit. It is an attempt to elucidate S'ankara-Bhashya on the second Sutra of the S'ariraka-Mimamsa. It is written on the same lines' as the first part, and is intended to be a sequel to it-

Sri Swamiji has introduced, in the course of his commentary, certain discussions regarding views held by the followers of S'ankara now divided into two main sub-schools, as well as the followers of Sri Ramanuja and Sri Madhva. While the main object is to bring out the superority of what he himself considers to be S'ankaras views, these criticisms are certainly thought-provoking and often illuminating. Looked at from this stand-point of view, therefore, there is reason to believe that the work might evoke a reaction on the part of modern scholars interested in comparative study of Vedanta no less than orthodox pandits of all the three schools prevalent in Southern India.

The Working Committee owe a deep debt of gratitude to a donor who prefers to remain anonymous, for financial help which has made the publication possible. May the great Beneficent Being by whose grace this work has seen the light, inspire the Swamiji with ennobling thoughts andcall for the response from other kindred generous souls to support the undertaking so that the remaining portion of this edifying series may see the light of day.


The reader is" requested to go through my introduction to the Vivecan on the Jijnasadhi- karana-Bhnshjo, I have explained there at some length the importance of the first four Sutras of the Sanraka-Mimmamsa as covering the whole ground-work of Vedanta as' understood by sankara. I have also pointed out the circumstances that led me to undertake a new sub-commentary on that portion of S'ankara's Bhashya, which sets forth the fundamentals of the Vedantic System.

The present work which relates to the Bhashya on the second Setra, is a sustained attempt to clarify S'ankara's real position with regard to the Vedantic idea of 'causality", much on the same lines as were adopted in the previous Adhikarara to explain the true nature of the , knowledge' of Brahman. In both cases it will be noted, S ankara uses these terms knowledge and causality in a metaphysical sense. By knowledge, he means not a concept of something discrete, but the intuition of one's own self as Brahman, resulting after the elimination of all unreal Upadhis hose characteristics are wrongly super-imposed on the Self. Similarly, Brahman is said to, be the 'cause' of the world not in the empirical. sense of an. invariable antecedent something which transforms itself into something else which is called its effect, but in the metaphysical sense of something which falsely appears as something else, while remaining intact all the same. This causal nature is ascribed to Brahman only as a device in persuance of the method of the Adhyaropa-apausda Nyaya to reveal Brahman's true nature as a metaphysical entity, One without a second, its apparent effect, the world, being really ever essentially one with it.

Another truth that has been made abundantly clear in the Bhashya on the second Sutra is that Brahman's being the sole cause of the world's birth, sustentation and dissolution is not provable by logical inference (Anumsna-Pramanam ), but can be realized only through intuition arising out of the Sruti-teaching supported by Vedic reasoning as distinguished from the pramama known as inference.

One more teaching of s'ankara's that has been clarified here is that the so-called creation of the world by Brahman is no more than the differentiation into various names and forms from their undifferentiated condition, and that these names and forms - whether differentiated or not - are only superimpositions of Avidya on Brahman which never affect its true nature as the Absolute, free from all characteristics. Relative to the world of names and forms and the individual souls in it, Brahman is called svara the Overlord, omniscient and omnipotent, and when Brahman is recommended in the S'rutis to be meditated upon as endowed with certain properties to modifications pertaining to those self-same names and forms, it is known as Saguea (Qualified), Apara (Lower) as contrasted with Brahman in itself which is Nirguna (free from all attributes), and Para (Higher). It is, however, to be remembered that Brahman is in no way rendered inferior by being thus spoken of as svara or Apara or Saguna-Brahma. Accordingly S'ankara draws our attention to this fact, time and again by using the terms Para-Brahman, I s'vara , Parames'vara, and Paramatman indiscriminately for each of those aspects of Brahman when the context leaves no doubt as to which of them is meant.

As in the case of the previous Adhikarana, I have tried to impress on the reader the significance of these and other doctrines not only in the body of the present sub-commentary but also in the Appendix which is devoted to the discussion of five. different topics relevant to the subject- matter of the Sutra in hand. I am well aware that some of the disuussions raised in the Appendices and even in the body of the sub-commentary on the Sutras, may not be easily intelligible to the beginner who would naturally prefer to get at the general drift of S'ankara’s teaching rather than be lost in the maze of controversy, but the very aimof the present work as its name indicates is to present the special features of S'ankara's Bhashya after sifting them from extraneous teachings liable to be mistaken for S'ankara's owing to misinterpretations of his foIlolowers or misinterpretations of hostile schools. As to how far I have been successful in the attempt, the critical reader alone has to be the judge.

The Adhyatma Prakasha Karyalaya IS to be congratulated on its prompt execution of neatly printing the work. For the many error that have survived in proof-correction, my inadvertance and failing eye-sight are as much responsible as the composing staff.

I have as usual completely entrusted the work to the Chairman" Adhyatma Prakasha Karyalaya, Holenarsipur, for purposes of publishing- and giving it a wide publicity.


Publisher' Note

We are greatly rejoiced that we have been able to place this part of the Sutra-Bhashyartha- Tattva- Vivecani at long last.

There is very little to add to what we wrote in our Note to the second part of the Series except that we have ventured to undertake its publication just to complete the series, while we are fully aware of the limited sale that original Sanskrit works on Vedanta especially of the, nature of the present publication, command in these days. At the same time we know that there are critical students of S'ankara's works who have been eagerly looking forward to the appearance of this instalment which contains perhaps the most interesting and important portion of S'ankara's Bhashya on many a point of which Swamiji's new commentary sheds abundant light as was expected.


I am thankful to Bhagavan Narayana whose grace has spared me to complete this series of commentaries on Sri S'arikara's Bhashya on the Vedanta Sutras.

The present portion of my commentary relates to the Bhashya on the third and the fourth Sutras. The importance of the Bhashya on these Sutras, lies in its clarification of the concept of Sastra Pramanya in particular. The Upanishads otherwise known by the name of Vedantas, are rightly considered by all orthodox interpreters as Vedas. Difference of opinion prevails, however, with regard to how this part of the Vedas, is to be regarded as a pramana or valid means of knowledge with regard to Brahman, whose knowledge is taken to be a means of Summum Bonum. All schools of Vedanta, ancient or modern, advaitic or non-advaitic, are of the unanimous opinion that the Vedas can be regarded as pramana only if they reveal truths beyond the ken of other pramanas like perception or inference, for if they merely expatiate upon what is known by perception or some other pramanas, the very appellation of pramsna-would be a misnomer. But Vedantins of s'ankara's tradition and alone in holding the Upanishads as Pram. cause they reveal an existent entity, Brahma. Atman, which does not come within the scope perception or even the texts of Karmakanda.

Failing to realize that the Absolute Atman who is no object, cannot be objectified by any pramana, the ancient Vedantins could not grasp the idea that Atman cannot be made subservient to any injunction. Many of them held that all vedas teach some karma or things subservient to some injunction such as meditation. Even today all Vedantins hold that Brahman or the Highest God, has to be meditated upon as enjoined in the vedas, and that the Highest Good or Moksha is to be experienced in a special Heaven.

An importantd octrine of Sarikara-Vedanta, that the Vedanta texts fall into two classes, one set of them enjoining Upasanas or meditations which performed yield fruits to be enjoyed in this life or lead to joys to be experienced in the other world. The second set of texts, however, teach The nature of Brahman which is the Self of all beings. The syntactical construction of these texts, is such that they do not lead the enquirers to any action after. understanding the meaning of the sentence. The right knowledge bf the meaning of the text, leads to the immediate intuition of Brahman as the Self of the whole universe as well as of the enquirer. When this intuition dawns, one would realize that Brahman or Atman is the All, the One without a second and therefore there is nothing else remaining to be known or done. This is what is called Sadyomukti in S'ankara-Vedanta. In Sadyo-mukti where one's self is identified with the All, there are no pramanas (means of knowledge), nothing to be known, nor is there any knowledge distinct from either of these. Since the Vedanta-s'astra teaches this fact, it is called a Pramana, in that sense.

Another teaching convincingly brought to the forefront in the Sutra, is that the seemingly injunctive texts about Sravana (study of texts), Manana (reflection) and Nididhynsana (contemplation), are meant only to turn the seekers' mind inward unlike the genuine injunctions of Karmas or Upasanas. Some of the subcommentators, and the Bhashyakaras of other schools of Vedanta following the lead of these Post-s'ankaras, have misrepresented S'ankara as implying that for Jnana, S'ravana and other means are injunctions of some sort. I have made a sustained attempt in these pages to show that verbs in the imperative mood in the context of jnana, are intended only to recommend introspection and make the inquirer ready to study the import of the texts teaching the true nature of Atman.

A fourth teaching of Vedanta which follows As a corollary of the nature of Samanvaya taught here, demands a passing mention. I have already referred to this in connection with sastra- pamanya, but it bears a repetition to call the attention of the student of Vedanta. No word or sentence actually teaches Brahman as an object of knowledge, or meditation and Brahman can never be taught as an object expressible in words. the function of the texts) is only to negate all distincts so as to reveal the Atman as He is.

The method of adhyaropapavada is used throughout Vedanta in teaching the nature of Reality. This Method is so important that it deserves to be studied in all its bearings upon vedantic teaching in a separate treatise. But the reader's attention is specially invited to the Sanskrit Appendix to the present work, explaining How this method has been applied to all the first four Sutras and the Bhashya thereon. s'ankara's arguments would lose their force for one who failed to understand the modus operandi of this traditional method.

I have not said anything here upon the criticisms to be found both in the body of the book as well as in the Appendix touching the post-S'ankara advaitins again and again. The reader is requested to make a careful study of the various interpretations of s'ankara, which have gained currency nowadays in the name of S'ankara. Unless one has succeeded in trying to get out of the morass created by these confusing post- S'ankara writings, one can never hope to get at the genuine teaching of the Sutra-Bhashya, I have to apologize for the misprints, errors of expression and thought that may be found in the book. My failing eye-sight and health combined with my unavoidable absence from the station in connection with pressing work elsewhere, have all contributed to these no less than my inherent lack of proficiency. The publishers will gladly receive any criticisms and make corrections in a second edition, if the work is destined at all to have one.

I have hereby completely made over all the rights of the work to the authorities of the Adhyatma Prakasha Karyalaya, Holenarsipur, as I have done in the case of my previous works.

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