Suresvara's Vartika on Yajnavalkya's Dialogue with Artabhaga and Others

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Item Code: NAB444
Author: Shoun Hino, K.P. Jog
Language: English
Edition: 1999
ISBN: 9788120816411
Pages: 586
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details 8.8" X 5.8"
Weight 680 gm
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Book Description

About the Book:

Here are presented together BUBV on BU ch.3 and ch.4. 1-2 which form the core of the philosophical thought of Yajnavalka. They relate to the disputes of the sage with a number of seers. In ch.3, the sage affirms the oneness of the individual self (Jiva) and the Brahman. This is, according to him, vijnanam anandam brahma. Then, in ch.4. 1-2, the sage begins to ascertain the truth (tattva) in his proposition, examining the nature of the experiences of an individual self in the states of walking, dream and deep sleep.

BUBV 3.5 and 4.2 are, however of particular importance since they deal with the views of Bhartrprapanca on matters under discussion.

About the Book:

DR. SHOUN HINO is Professor of Gifu Pharm University (Japan). He did his MA. at Nagoya University (Japan) and Ph. D. studies at Poona University (India).

DR.K.P. Jog is a retired Professor of Vedic Sanskrit and General Editor of Sanskrit Dictionary Project of Deccan College Research Institute, Pune.


The Brhadaranyaka is the biggest and most important one among principal Upanisads and contains numerous discussions of teachers, pupils, questioners and others. It is marked by philosophical speculations not opposed to but in conformity with a vigorous performance of rituals. The Brhadranyaka reveals to us the towering personality of the great Upanisadic thinker Yajnavalkya who affirmed neil neil, i.e. indescribability of the Brahman, the ultimate Truth. It is on this basis that Sankara built up his theory of Non-dualistic Vedanta.

Consequently, the Bhasya of Sankara on this Upanisad has assumed a very great significance in Vedäntic literature. Next to his Bhãsya on the Bralunasülra— nay almost on a par with it—his Bhasya on this Upanisad is a vivid picture of the (almost aggressively) vigorous philosophical acumen of the great phi— Josopher. And this is more pronouncingly felt in his references to and the refutations of the arguments of the followers of other systems of Indian philosophy, for they were unavoidable for him while he clarified (in his way- —on the non-dualistic way) the thought of the Upanisad from which he was distant at least by a period of about 1000 years and since there had intervened between hen and the Upanisad a number of thinkers of various systems. Yet, since he had set himself to the task of commenting on the Upanisad, he inevitably became somewhat brief, leaving quite a lot of disputations unclear (for his contemporaries).

This gave his pupil Sureivara a scope for clarifying his Guru’s thought in its fullness and lie wrote the Brhadaranyakopanisadbhasyavartika. The last member of the compound—name, vartika, refers to Suresvara’s discussion of ukta, anukta and durukta portions in Sañkara’s writing. Suresvara has underlined every small detail in the varied arguments in the Bhaya on the Upanisad and clarified the same with characteristic skill. It is noticed that Suresvara is familiar with minute details of different philosophical systems Nyaya and Mimamsa in particular and therefore he has in a way shaped the Tika of Anandagiri the most read commentator of Sankara’s works thus throwing abundant light on the vigorous philosophical activity of the times which preceded his teacher Sankara and himself.

A special mention has to be made here of Suresvara’s detailed discussions of the views of Bhartrprapanca a predecessor or a senior contemporary of Sankara. It may understandable scheme of Bhartrprapanca’s philosophy on the basis of these. Anther significant contribution of Suresvara deserves special notice. His discussions about the interpretation of Vedantic passage and various means of understanding knowledge manavyavahara or Nyaya in relation to the Vedantic logic indeed deserve in depth studies for purpose of clarifying the method of Non Dualistic Vedanta.



In the Ajatasatri Brahmana viz BU 2.1. there has occurred the discussion on the definition of the Brahman and the remaining parts of BU 2, i.e. Brahmana 2-6 of it, proceeded to elucidate the nature of the manifest forms of the same; incidentally, though, the final part of that portion (SU 2.6) supplied information on the line of teachers relating to the last two chapters of the Satapoath Brahmana and the first two chapters of RU. These two chapters of BU, viz. 1 and 2, have, in keeping with the ancient tradition, enunciated in clear terms what is being dealt with in the work (uddita) and then taken up defining the Brahman (laksana) of the uddista (BU 2.1), the parfksä examination’ of the same only naturally following it. This examination has naturally taken the form of jalpa and vada (see for these terms under SUB 4.1.1 and 2) in chapters 3 and 4 of RU and is presented in the disputes between sage Yajbavalkya and several seers and the sage’s final instruction to king Janaka. It is worth noting, nevertheless, that chapter 3 and chapter 4.1 and 2 of BU appear to present one connected idea which is further elucidated in RU 4.3-6. Yet RU 4.3 and 4.4 are extremely significant, elaborate and fairly long presentations of two important aspects of the said examination and have demanded special treatment in BUBV and, consequently, in our scheme, i.e. in two separate volumes, soon to follow.

Though given in our volume 4 as an Appendix, the translation of BURV 3.1 is presented here in revised form in order that the reader can have one (conveniently) complete picture of Suresvara’s contribution.

As before, we have derived great help from Anandagiri’s Sastraprakasika (SP) and AnandapUrna’s Nyayakalpalatika (NKL). We express our special thanks to Prof. K. Macida (JLCAA), Prof. 3. Takashima (ILCAA) and Mr. N, Okaguchi. Prof. Macida offered us his own Devanagri printing software called Catur. Prof. Takashima Provided us with various programmes which made it possible to shape a book from the manuscript. And Mr. Okaguchi designed Devanagri Font.



Chapter 3 and 4 of BU are known as the Kanda of Yajfiavalkya inasmuch as they contain the arguments of that sage iii answer to various queries made by different seers in relation to matters known to them by tradition—even scriptural tradition which is extensively recorded in chapters 1 and 2, i.e. the Madhukãna of BU. It is felt necessary by añkara to explain away the apparent repetition of the contents of the Madhukanda in Yajnavalkya’s Kanda. He has slated his view succinctly thus:

upapattipradhanatvad atikrantena madhukandena samanarthatve pi sati na punaruktata madhukandam hy agamapradhanma agamopapattin hy atmaikyapraksanya pravrtte saknutha karatala bilvam iva darasaytum srotavyo mantavya iti hy uktam tasmad agamarthasyaiva parikasapuravakm nirdharanya yajnavalkiyam kandom upapattipradhanma arabhayate!

‘Though there is the same subject treated in these two Kãndas, let this not be supposed to be repetition. For, the Madhukända gives prominence to the statement of scriptural contents; whereas the statements from scriptures together with suitable (or, proper) reasoning in the Yajnavalkyakanda should go to reveal the uniqueness (or. singleness) of the Atman as clearly as a Bilva fruit kept on the palm of a hand. It was earlier stated ‘The Atman should he heard about, thought over .... And, therefore, in order to ascertain (he thought in the scriptural statements, this Kanda of Yajnavalkya proceeds to examine the same with proper reasoning,’ (free rendering).

It is for this reason that, unlike in our earlier volumes of the Vartika, we present in this volume the contents of the various Brahmanas in somewhat greater details. Also, since the first two Brahmanas of the fourth chapter go to form with the third chapter one unified thought, we present these also here in this volume.

There is in these summaries experienced some difficulty in dividing the verses in accordance with the Kanikas of the Brahmanas. Therefore, there are references made to the Kandikas in brackets, even when the units of verses relating to their topics continue beyond the beginning of the Kandikas.

In the verses 1-12, (here is exposition of the contents in the first two Kandikas. In verses 1-2, Suresvara states, in brief, the relation of the Munikanda (chapters 3 and 4 of BU) to the preceding Kanda, viz, the Madhukända (chapters 1 and 2 of BU). That is to say, alter there have been earlier certain enunciations of the doctrines in chapters 1 and 2, there is now, in chapters 3 and 4, an exposition of the same in the manner of jalpa ‘(in philosophical) dispute’. Verses 3-11 explain why this Kända (viz, the Munikanda) is described in BUB as upapattipradhana ‘having principally logical exposition (of the matters enunciated earlier)’. Verses 12-15 point out incidentally that, despite the exposition 0f the examples such as of (the beating of) the drums, this Kanda is more significant (than the earlier Kanda), owing to prominence being given to the statements of various reasons together with the prima facie views about the already stated doctrines and ‘the answers/refutation’ of them. Verses 16-23 explain the thought in BUB nantidgithe ... at comparatively greater length -—this is done with a view to bringing out the cohesive or convincing arguments of the two Kandas. Now, with reference to the third Kandika, verses 24-26 state in brief the thought in the words sa niuktih sa yuklih as stated in BUB.

The fourth Kandika is taken up for discussion in verse 27 onwards. To begin with, verses 27-30 explain Kalat mrtyoh atimuktih, Then, verses 31-34 explain (he BUB phrase )‘yajamanasya caksuh. In verses 35-39, Suresvara explains ayam pranah sa vayuh the fifth brahmanartvija mamasa candrena of the Madhyandina recension in verses 40-41 surevara discards Bhartyprapanca view that the words akrama and arambana in the sixth Kandika refer to body movements and in verse 42 states the view of BUB adopted by himself. Verses 43-46 refer to ity atimoksh and point out that this portion of BU relating to japa or upasana has oneness of thought with the upansana of the udgitha in BU 1.3 verses 47-48 explain sampadupasana. Verses 51-52 refer to the seventh Kandika and explain BUB yat kim cedam. Verses 53-59 explain the contents of the eighth and ninth Kandikas with further details of the sampads.




Srimukham by Sri Jagadguru Shankaracharya vii
Foreword by Prof. Hajime Nakamura ix
Preface xi
Abbreviations xv
Introduction xvii
Translation and Annotation  
BUBV 3.1 1
BUBV 3.2 23
BUBV 3.3 79
BUBV 3.4 133
BUBV 3.5 193
BUBV 3.6 261
BUBV 3.7 271
BUBV 3.8 289
BUBV 3.9 343
BUBV 4.1 407
BUBV 4.2 421
Select Glossary 457
Bibliography 461
Half Verse Index 463

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