Bhagavadgita, cognition, Buddhism?

Martin Gansten Martin.Gansten at TEOL.LU.SE
Wed Aug 30 18:57:19 UTC 2000

>there is an expectation in saa.mkhya that the k.setra
>should specifically mention the locus of all these, which is the body.

But the body has already been equated with the k.setra (13.1), whereas
sa.mghaata etc. are listed as constituent parts (or even transformations:
vikaara) of the k.setra. From a purely text-internal perspective, then, one
would not expect sa.mghaata to be yet another synonym for 'body'.

>Also, the list of things in 13.5 would be regarded as purely material and
>non-conscious ...
>Now 13.6 steps in, to list things that are signs of life and awareness or

To be sure, mental 'organs' are regarded as material; but why should buddhi
(listed in 13.5) be thought more so than cetanaa or dh.rti (13.6) -- which
even in Sankara's view are functions of the buddhi, vijñaana or I don't follow this argument. As far as I can see, from a
Samkhya perspective, all items listed in 13.5-6 would seem to belong to the
same category, i.e., prak.rti.

>Also see yuktidiipikaa on saa.mkhyakaarikaa 29, where dh.rti is one of five
>karmayonis, which are the entities that sustain life in the body. 

I'm afraid I lack access to this commentary. Could you please list the
names of the other karmayonis?

>Seems to me that you should also take 18.34-35 into account, as both buddhi
>and dh.rti can be colored differently by sattva, rajas and tamas, which are
>after all, characteristics of prak.rti.

You are quite right; I meant 18.29-35. I was quoting from my obviously
imperfect memory!

>However, one must distinguish between dh.rti in 18.33-35 from dh.rti in
>18.43, where it is just one of the marks of the k.satriya 

Certainly, both dh.rti and (even more so) buddhi are used with different
meanings in different contexts in the Gita. That's part of the problem.


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