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ISSN 0975-4067

Journal of Sanskrit Research Foundation

The New Trivandrum Sanskrit Series Vol.IV. Book.I & II

January-June 2012


Editors Note

xhnx nx S -b..{{{hCE xhEi H& -b.B.x +REj lx - b. .B. E +]{nlx{h -b.{.vEhx nEi +&*b.].B.i E: {xi E -B. xEh`x E ]] x Ei \VxJhbx -V.B Sree ankars Views on Vedic RitualismDr. V.Vasanthakumari Dramatic representation of Philosophy Dr. V.Vasudevan The Influence of Kalidasa in Kumaran Asans Works, Especially Chintavishtayaya Sita Dr.V.Asalatha Logic and Epistemology in Nyyadpik Dr. S. Sivakumar Yogic Remedies to Current Problems of Life Dr. S.Sureshkumar Voice of the Silenced: A re-reading of Bamas Sangati and P. Sivakamis The Grip of Change Athira Sasidharan Vidymdhavya Dr.Prajitha. P.V Review Brahmastravtti -An Opening to Traditional Wisdom - Dr.G.Narayanan Obituary Prof. Dr. M.H Sastrikal

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54 63 71 76 82


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Brahmastravtti : An Opening to Traditional Wisdom


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The long tradition of Indian philosophy has produced large number

of philosophical literature, both original ones and in the form of commentaries. The commentaries, mostly, excelled the originals. It was regular to write commentary on original texts that form the foundation. Vrtika is a text that analyses the correctness of the original and supplements added information, if any. Bhya explains the meaning of the original in independently and tkas tries to bring out the hidden ideas from the bhyas. As everyone knows the vyakarana texts are the best example to this. Ktyyana, the vrtikakra, explained the stras of Pini and added more information and explanations. Pataali the bhhyakra wrote an elaborate commentary the mahbhya on stras and Vrtika. In Vedanta philosophy all has accepted the stras of Bdaryaa as the foundation. Then the bhyas forms the real foundation of different Vedantas. Thre are vrtikas, vttis and subcommentaries on these bhyas. In advaitavedanta Surevara is vrtikakra. The Bhmati and Vivaraa schools are related to subcommentaries on nkarabhya. That is, all the works, irrespective of commentary or subcommentary or any other, have a place and importance in the hierarchy of philosophical literature. Here the book under consideration is brahmastravtti by N.S.Rmnujattcrya. The author, former Vice Chancellor of Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeeta, Tirupati, is a well known scholar in the field of Sanskrit. His contributions to Sanskrit philosophy through his books and Research articles reflects his mastery over all the sastras.

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He was conferred the prestigious French Governments Chevalier recently. Brahmastravtti follows the Srbhya of Rmnuja to explain the Brahmastras. In the Visidvaita, Sudaranasri in rutaparakik had explained the commentary of Rmnuja. Rmnuja himself wrote two short vttis- vedntasra and vedntadpa to explain the meaning of vedntastras. Still what is the use of a new vtti? One may doubt. Author has explained the need in his prastvana that though Rmnuja had showed the meaning of sutras in three texts and Sudarana further explained them in rutaprakik reader may get it difficult to understand the real sense of stras which are written in the form of anumnas. Further the method of adhikaraa sampradya makes it difficult to realise the viaya, samaya, and sagati according to which the stras were explained in the higher texts like Bhya and Bhyatka. Therefore this particular text, which is also named as akarnugua, is to reduce the difficulty in understanding the meaning of stras. This book is written in simple Sanskrit without any jargon. The method of navyanyaya is not employed. So the difficulty level is low. Brahmastra is a text that employs the old scheme of logic. The vtti explains each sutra word by word giving its grammatical as well as philosophical significance. It gives the meaning of each sutra following bhya and rutaprakik. Then it continues to explain the meaning of stra that is applicable to it. Still this text is not a replacement to bhya and rutaprakik. But it is a complement. It helps the reader to understand the arguments of Bhya and tka with more clarity. This book aims those who are engaging in public debates with other systems namely Advaita and dvaita. It could provide them insights into the real idea of the masters. The Bhya and literature affiliated to

Brahmastravtti: An Opening to wisdom

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it were passed on orally. A merit of this was the clarity in understanding, which loses when the transmission and distribution takes other forms. The method of interpretation - exegesis- varies from system to system. For a proper understanding of the system one should master the rules and tools of hermeneutics that followed by the system. Brahmastra follows adhikaraa method. There for the interpreters and commentators follows the tools for interpreting each adhikaraa, which are viaya, viaya, prvapaka, uttarapaka, and sagati. These were same, to an extent, for all Vedanta systems. There are differences about the number of the angas of adhikaraa and on the angas itself. Systems differ in the interpretation because of the difference in the approach to scripture and metaphysics and arrive at different conclusions. The Brahmasutavrtti of tatacharya explains the 156 adhikaraa and 545 sutras discussing all the five angas of adhikaraa. The text quotes visayasamayacaiva vicronirayastath; prayojana ca pacngam prcodhikaraa vidu. According to some other there are ten angas. Here the author of brahmasutravrtti explains the ten angas of adhikaraa for clarity. New books dealing with philosophy, especially viitdvaita, advaitavednta and dvaita, were coming out in Sanskrit language. But almost all of them are devoted for discussing the mutually unacceptable and controversial issues. Among them the book of Rmnujattcrya is a difference. Above all this book is useful to all who love vedanta and like to seek the real meaning of Vedanta. This book shows how the sutras are configured and teaches how to read and realise them. This approach helps the enthusiasts of other system also to understand forming of prvapaka. The editors Dr.V.Vasudevan and Dr.N.Jaganathan had done an excellent work in publishing it. Books like this could lessen the difficulty in learning and understanding of Indian philosophy by bringing out the traditional knowledge for public.