The Vedanta-Sutras with the Commentary by Sankaracarya eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 748 pages of information about The Vedanta-Sutras with the Commentary by Sankaracarya.



1.  That which is inferred (by the Sa@nkhyas, viz. the pradhana) cannot be the cause (of the world), on account of the orderly arrangement (of the world) being impossible (on that hypothesis).

Although it is the object of this system to define the true meaning of the Vedanta-texts and not, like the science of Logic, to establish or refute some tenet by mere ratiocination, still it is incumbent on thorough students of the Vedanta to refute the Sa@nkhya and other systems which are obstacles in the way of perfect knowledge.  For this purpose a new chapter is begun. (Nor must it be said that the refutation of the other systems ought to have preceded the establishment of the Vedanta position; for) as the determination of the sense of the Vedanta-passages directly subserves perfect knowledge, we have at first, by means of such a determination, established our own position, since this is a task more important than the refutation of the views entertained by others.

Here an opponent might come forward and say that we are indeed entitled to establish our own position, so as to define perfect knowledge which is the means of release to those desirous of it, but that no use is apparent of a refutation of other opinions, a proceeding productive of nothing but hate and anger.—­There is a use, we reply.  For there is some danger of men of inferior intelligence looking upon the Sa@nkhya and similar systems as requisite for perfect knowledge, because those systems have a weighty appearance, have been adopted by authoritative persons, and profess to lead to perfect knowledge.  Such people might therefore think that those systems with their abstruse arguments were propounded by omniscient sages, and might on that account have faith in them.  For this reason we must endeavour to demonstrate their intrinsic worthlessness.

But, it might be said, the Sa@nkhya and similar systems have already been impugned in several Sutras of the first adhyaya (I, 1, 5, 18; I, 4, 28); why, then, controvert them again?—­The task—­we reply—­which we are now about to undertake differs from what we have already accomplished.  As the Sa@nkhyas and other philosophers also quote, in order to establish their own positions, the Vedanta-passages and interpret them in such a manner as to make them agree with their own systems, we have hitherto endeavoured to show that their interpretations are altogether fallacious.  Now, however, we are going to refute their arguments in an independent manner, without any reference to the Vedanta-texts.

Project Gutenberg
The Vedanta-Sutras with the Commentary by Sankaracarya from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
Follow Us on Facebook