Ontology of Ramanuja

Martin Gansten mgansten at SBBS.SE
Tue Feb 2 20:42:56 UTC 1999


Thank you. I am trying to get hold of Gupta's book.

>In short, the world as acit has reality apart from consciousnesses because
>the  ultimate cause of materiality is Brahman, which is also the ultimate
>cause of consciousness (cit). Both cit and acit are produced from the same
>ultimate cause, while each operates within the causal dynamics of its own

The reason I asked if this was your own opinion is that I find it a little
difficult to reconcile with passages like the following (from the
Vedarthasamgraha, §17b, as translated by van Buitenen):

"The individual soul is itself ensouled by Brahman, for the soul is a
modification of Brahman because it constitutes His body, as appears from
another sruti: '...whose body is the soul' etc. The *non-spiritual entities*
in the generic structures of a god, a man etc. *are modifications of this
same individual soul* -- which is a modification of Brahman himself --
because they constitute the soul's body. Consequently all these entities are
ultimately ensouled by Brahman."

Here, acit appears to be a modification of Brahman only mediately, by virtue
of being a modification of the jiva (cit) which in turn is an immediate
modification of Brahman. This model appears to me to have ramifications
quite different from those of a model where cit and acit both evolve
immediately from Brahman and exist independently of each other.

Best regards,
Martin Gansten

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