Advaita-siddhi

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By Swami Harshananda

Advaita-siddhi literally means ‘fulfillment of Advaita’.

This work is the most celebrated work of Madhusūdana Sarasvatī (16th cent. A. D.) and was written in response to Nyāyāmrta by Vyāsa Tīrtha, a pontiff of the Mādhva school (15th-16th cent. A. D.).

The point of dispute between the two works is the definition of what is true (satya) and what is false (mithyā). Any object is considered satya (true, real) only as long as it is not bādhita (contradicted or negated) by subsequent experience. All the criticisms of Nyāyāmrta against the five definitions of falsity given by the previous writers on Advaita, have been addressed in Advaitasiddhi. The book also discusses and supports many of the conflicting theories regarding the unity or plurality of the selves, unity or plurality of avidyā, Brahman or the jīva as the locus of avidyā and many more. Thereby it implied that any of the theories can be resorted to explanation of the indeterminable false world since the main interest of the advaitin is the one absolute Brahman.

The different theories of Advaita can be adopted by the different aspirants according to their fitness (adhikāra). The work has three Sanskrit commentaries of which Laghucandrikā of Brahmānanda Sarasvatī is popular among the scholars.

References

  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore