Reverberations of Dharmakirti’s Philosophy

by Birgit Kellner | 2020 | 264,305 words

This page relates ‘Kshemaraja’s Response to Dharmakirti’s Critique of Initiation’ of the study on the philosophy of Dharmakirti (6th century) and his predecessor Dignaga (5th century). This collection of articles reflects philosophical currents in India, China and Tibet during their time and investigates the Buddhist theories of Pramana (“instruments of trustworthy awareness”).

Kṣemarāja’s Response to Dharmakīrti’s Critique of Initiation

(By Somadeva Vasudeva)

[Full title: A Causeless Liberation? Kṣemarāja’s Response to Dharmakīrti’s Critique of Initiation by Somadeva Vasudeva]

1. Who are Dharmakīrti’s Śaivas?

Kṣemarāja (active around 1000–1050 CE), a Kashmirian exegete of the non-dualist Śaiva Mantramārga, has supplied, as an appendix to his commentary on the Svacchandatantra, a short Prakaraṇa style tract defending the theory that Śaiva ritual initiation, or dīkṣā, is capable of bestowing final liberation. Kṣemarāja begins with a Buddhist pūrvapakṣa built on ten and a half verses of Dharmakīrti’s Pramāṇavārttika, namely the Pramāṇasiddhi 257cd–267.[1] Before proceeding to analyze Kṣemarāja’s work, it is helpful to establish the identity of Dharmakīrti’s original opponent. What kind of Śaiva views is Dharmakīrti attacking, and how do these views compare to what Kṣemarāja is defending?

As Acharya (2014) has shown, Dharmakīrti addresses the doctrines of the early dualist Śaivasiddhānta, that is, groups who accepted the authority of revealed scriptures such as the Niśvāsatattvasaṃhitā, the Kiraṇatantra, and the Svāyambhuvasūtrasaṃgraha. The Niśvāsatattvasaṃhitā, the earliest work of this school that has come down to us, is tentatively dated to around 450–550 CE. It is in this work that we see the first defense of the new doctrine that was to become the hallmark of the Śaiva Mantramārga: The claim that dīkṣā, or initiation, is sufficient cause for the end of rebirth. We are asked to believe that this is possible because Śaiva mantras have an unimaginable power (acintyavibhava)[2] capable of excising the substantial defilements that lead to incarnation. The early Śaivasiddhānta makes the claim that this excision can be empirically verified in a ritual of weighing, the tulādīkṣā, or dhaṭadīkṣā, “Initiation with the scales.”

Dharmakīrti responds to this kind of a claim in the Pramāṇasiddhi section of the Pramāṇavārttika:

PV Pramāṇasiddhi 258cd–260ab:

nālaṃ bījādisaṃsiddho vidhiḥ puṃsām ajanmane //258//
tailābhyaṅgāgnidāhāder api muktiprasaṅgataḥ /
prāg guror lāghavāt paścān na pāpaharaṇaṃ kṛtam
mā bhūd gauravam evāsya na pāpaṃ gurv amūrtitaḥ /

A ritual admitted as effective for seeds and so on is not sufficient to end rebirth for persons, because of the undesirable consequence that liberation could also [be brought about] by rubbing with sesame oil, or by burning with fire, and so on.

A removal of sin is not established by [the initiand’s] prior heavier weight and subsequent lighter weight. Let him become even weightless [after initiation]![4] [It proves nothing:] Sin has no weight because it is formless.

Dharmakīrti objects here to the Saiddhāntika claim that mantras possess the power to liberate. The intended inference is probably something like the following: “An initiatory mantra-procedure is sufficient cause for the end of rebirth. Because sin-seeds are burnt. Just as in the case of other burnt seeds.”[5] Here the reason is a type of viruddhahetu called dharmaviśeṣaviruddha. That is to say, it establishes an undesired additional property (dharmaviśeṣa) for the probandum, namely that an end of rebirth can also be achieved by other things that stop seeds from sprouting, such as heating or rubbing with oil. Both parties actually accept that mantras can bring about other effects, such as destroying the capacity of seeds to sprout and neutralizing snake-poison (perhaps the most common practical application of mantras). For Dharmakīrti, as Eltschinger (2001: 86) explains: “…les mantra possèdent, en vertu de leur propre nature (svabhāva, svarūpa), une efficacité naturelle (*bhāvaśakti) dont le mode d’opération demeure inexplicable.” For the Śaivas, the efficacy of mantras–understood as souls[6] appointed to this high office by Śiva–derives from the “virility of mantras” (mantravīrya).[7] These minor supernatural effects supposedly prove that mantras can indeed perform also their primary function of effecting liberation through initiation. Dharmakīrti’s prasaṅga then asserts that if mantras can block rebirth, then other methods used to prevent seeds from sprouting should also be capable of blocking rebirth.

Since other methods used to sterilize seeds are not capable of blocking rebirth, there is no reason to believe that mantras are capable of doing so.[8]

The notion that mantras have the power to nullify the ability of karmic seeds to sprout is also a topos of the early, dualist Śaivasiddhānta Kiraṇatantra:

The action of many existences has its seeds burnt,[9] so to speak (iva), by mantras [in initiation]. Future [action] too is blocked; [but] that by which this [body is sustained can be destroyed only] by experience. (trans. Goodall).[10]

Dharmakīrti then refutes the Śaiva claim that weighing the initiate before and after initiation, and seeing that he weighs less afterwards, demonstrates that mantras have removed his sins. Beyond the scriptural sources, the two earliest exegetes of this tradition to whose ideas we still have access are Bṛhaspati (ca. 650–750, of whose work, however, only a few fragments survive) and Sadyojyotis (ca. 675–725).[11]

Of these two, Sadyojyotis is explicit on the probative value of the initiation with the scales (tulādīkṣā, dhaṭadīkṣā):

[By initiation] on the scales, [the initiand] is purified of great sins such as brahminicide. One may know that his bonds have been destroyed through direct evidence, just as the destruction of poison [by Gāruḍa-mantras is proved by visible evidence].[12]

Very similarly, Sadyojyotis speaks of the ritual destruction of sin being “perceived” (dṛṣṭa) in his Nareśvaraparīkṣā 3.83.[13] Other scriptures, such as the Sārdhatriśatikālottara, classified the ‘evidence’ of the ritual of the scales as the fourth of a list of eight pratyayas,[14] which it understood as faith-inspiring miracles,[15] a position the Śaiva non-dualists were subsequently to develop further.

The example of poison is possibly also what Dharmakīrti intended by the force of his -ādi. Poison was a stock example for the Saiddhāntikas. In the Sarvajñānottara we read:

Just as the toxicologist[16] (viṣavaidya), through the power of visualizations and seed-mantras, effects the removal of poison, so the ācārya effects a disjunction with the bonds through Śaiva [initiation] rituals.[17] Just as a suppression of poison [takes place] by the power of mantras and herbs, so there takes place a suppression of all bonds through initiation.[18]

It is uncertain whether Dharmakīrti knew scriptures such as the Niśvāsatattvasaṃhitā19 or the Rauravasūtrasaṃgraha or, whether he was merely attacking a popular idea. It is possible that he personally consulted these earliest Śaiva scriptures, though in view of their archaic language it seems unlikely that he would have rated them as credible opponents.[19]

A more plausible candidate, however, is the post-Diṅnāga Mataṅgapārameśvara, which aspires to a more śāstraic presentation and diction, and which engages in polemics. In its yoga section, in the context of the rite of weighing, the Mataṅgapārameśvara does indeed claim that dīkṣā removes pāpa, exactly the claim that Dharmakīrti attacks:

[The fire concentration (āgneyī dhāraṇā)],[20] intense with a raging conflagration of flames, deployed [through visualization] in the ritual of mounting the scales, can render a person free from defilement, [because he is now][21] possessed of a body from which sin (pāpa-) has been burnt away.[22]

Commenting on this, the tenth century Kashmirian Saiddhāntika commentator Bhaṭṭa Rāmakaṇṭha defends the idea that sin (pāpa) has mass and that the “body really becomes heavier, because sin is a function of tamas, and so has mass.” He corroborates this by citing Īśvarakṛṣṇa’s Sāṃkhyakārikā 13c, where it is said that, “the factor tamas is heavy and it conceals.”[23] The Yuktidīpikā (ca. 680–720 CE) explains this heaviness as a dullness of the internal instrument that causes downward motion of the effect (kārya). This shifts the focus away from sin to the Sāṃkhya guṇa of tamas, a material constituent of primal matter; but for Dharmakīrti this claim still would remain anyatarāsiddha.

A significant problem in assuming that Dharmakīrti knew the Mataṅgapārameśvara as we now know it, is that the Mataṅgapārameśvara’s Vidyāpāda also teaches a more developed theory of mala as opposed to the simpler idea of pāpa found in the Yogapāda.[24]

There is, however, no evidence that Dharmakīrti knew the theory of a material mala. As Goodall (2013: s.v. pāśa) notes, it may be a later development:

In a number of the earliest surviving Siddhāntatantras, “impurity” (mala) is noticeable by its absence: we find no mention of it in the Ni, in the non-eclectic recensions of the Kālottara, such as the SārK, in what survives of the RauSS or even in the SJU(G) (in which, pace Aghoraśiva, the word mala is used to refer to karman). The first surviving Siddhānta in which “impurity” figures may be the SvāSS.

It is conceivable, therefore, that Dharmakīrti knew only the Mataṅgapārameśvara’s Yoga-pāda, or, since this reference to sin (pāpa) in the Yogapāda is an archaic throwback, it is also possible that Dharmakīrti had access to the archetype. It is relevant, in this context, that the Mataṅgapārameśvara’s Yogapāda also elsewhere evidences Śaivas engaging with the Buddhist Pramāṇa tradition. Mataṅgapārameśvara Yogapāda 4.15cd–16a paraphrases Diṅnāga’s definition of pratyakṣa: anirdeśyam asaṃdigdhaṃ kalpanāpoḍhagocaram / pra-tyakṣam, “Sense-knowledge is unobjectifiable, free of doubt, and free of imagination.” If the Mataṅgapārameśvara’s Yogapāda section itself appears to be in dialogue with the Bud-dhist Pramāṇa tradition, it becomes more likely that a Buddhist response can be expected. Until a more reliable critical edition of the Mataṅgapārameśvara has been published, any chronological layering of the text remains speculative. We may conclude that it is possible that Dharmakīrti is responding to a text as late as the Mataṅgapārameśvara’s Yogapāda.

2. After Dharmakīrti

Dharmakīrti’s critique of initiation may have had a noticeable impact on the Saiddhāntikas. Acharya (2014: 14–16) notes that Dharmakīrti’s Śaivas speak of initiation removing sin (pāpa) or unseen, yet still weighty, demerit (adṛṣṭa), an idea that he traces back to the Śaivasiddhānta’s foundational scripture, the Niśvāsatattvasaṃhitā. This he contrasts with the post-Dharmakīrti Śaiva doctrine that initiation removes a defilement (mala), an imper-ceptible substance (dravya) that acts on the soul from outside.[25] Acharya has posited that this development was motivated by Buddhist criticism of the early Śaiva Mantramārga, and that Dharmakīrti provides us with a concrete example of what this criticism looked like.[26]

3. The causes of liberation

If it is initiation that removes the defilements that cause bondage, then why does not everyone seek Śaiva initiation? Is there some other factor that prompts individual to seek Śaiva initiation. Both the dualists and non-dualists held that a salvific divine contact called the descent of grace (śaktipāta) had to occur before a bound soul developed an interest in seeking initiation. In a sense this was the most significant event in the spiritual career of a Śaiva. But what, we may ask, caused the descent of grace?

Within the dualist fold two rival schools of thought emerged. One of the earliest ideas was that the descent of grace was caused by a karmic equilibrium (karmasāmya) caused by two simultaneously maturing karmas of equal strength. In the ensuing logjam, God needs intervene to maintain the regular working of karmic retribution, but any divine contact inevitably changes the individual in a profound way. A later idea, promoted by Sadyojyotis, was the theory of the maturation of defilement (malaparipāka), a kind of ripening of mala that renders it fit for removal.

The non-dualists rejected both of these narratives and held that God was completely free in his bestowal of grace (nirapekṣa).

The history of these developments is somewhat difficult to trace in our available sources. After Sadyojyotis and Bṛhaspati there follows a long gap of more than two hundred years in our record of the Saiddhāntika theorists until their tradition was revived by later Kashmirians such as Nārāyaṇakaṇṭha and Rāmakaṇṭha, authors who have been described as scriptural fundamentalists who wished to return to the original positions of Sadyojyotis.[27] In this apparent interregnum, it appears that rival theories of the causes and processes that lead up to liberation gained currency. We have evidence that there existed other early Saiddhāntika exegetes who rejected Sadyojyotis’ interpretation of the processes that lead to initiation and thence to liberation, objecting specifically to the idea that Śiva needs to take karma into account, and espousing instead a radical karmanirapekṣavāda, as did the later non-dualist Śaivas. Abhinavagupta, for example, reports, approvingly, that a certain Aniruddha, apparently an early commentator of the Mataṅgapārameśvara, held that the descent of liberating grace was in no way dependent on karma.[28] Evidently, Bhaṭṭa Rāmakaṇṭha, keen to reestablish Sadyojyotis’ theory of the ripening of impurity (malaparipāka) as the decisive factor, would not have approved of this position. Above all, he wished to limit the operation of Śiva’s descent of grace (śaktipāta) to what he considered meritorious human beings.[29]

Liberation through Dīkṣā

Figure 1: The gradualist model
[Liberation through Dīkṣā According to Abhinavagupta’s Explanation of Mālinīvijayottara 1.42–45]

For Dharmakīrti, on the other hand, the cause of rebirth is fully explained by the influence of two kinds of conscious intention (saṃcetanā), one being false knowledge (mithyājñāna-) and the other being the craving that arises from it (tadudbhūtatarṣa-).[30]

PV Pramāṇasiddhi 2.260cd–262ab:

mithyājñānatadudbhūtatarṣasaṃcetanāvaśāt //
hīnasthānagatir janma tena[31] tacchin[32] na jāyate /
tayor eva hi sāmarthyaṃ jātau tanmātrabhavataḥ //
te cetane svayaṃ karmety[33] akhaṇḍaṃ janmakāraṇam /

Birth is to enter an inferior mode of existence,[34] under the influence of [two kinds of] conscious intention, [one instigated by][35] false knowledge and [the other instigated by] the craving that arises from it. Therefore, one who severs these two is not born [again], for they alone, by their mere presence, are sufficient [causes] for [re]birth. These two kinds of intention are of themselves motivated action, and so constitute the complete cause of [re]birth.[36]

After Dharmakīrti, or, in different Śaiva traditions not known to him, the Śaivas had developed the idea that initiation removed not pāpa, but the three substantial impurities (mala): āṇava, māyīya, kārma.[37] The non-dualists inherited this theory, but, on the authority of the Mālinīvijayottara, they re-interpreted the defilements as three forms of ignorance.[38] A standardized set of expansions for the three defilements becomes commonplace (see e.g. Netratantroddyota 16.56): [1.] āṇava = apūrṇaṃmanyatā, erroneous belief that one is incomplete, [2.] kārma = śubhāśubhādisaṃskāra, positive and negative karmic latencies, [3.] māyīya = bhinnavedyaprathā, manifestation of differentiated objects of cognition.

It is not impossible, here (see table 1), to see a parallel between Dharmakīrti’s false knowledge and the non-dualist’s erroneous belief that one is incomplete, and between Dharmakīrti’s craving that arises from false knowledge and the non-dualists positive and negative karmic tendencies. The third mala, that accounts for the differentiation of the objects of cognition, is something Dharmakīrti might have included also under mithyājñāna. It may be this closeness that leads Kṣemarāja to adopt at times a conciliatory tone, pointing out that the only difference of opinion is that the Buddhists refuse to accept that mantras have enough power to liberate.

Table 1: The causes of bondage

Early Śaivasiddhānta Dharmakīrti Later Dualist Śaivasiddhānta Śaiva Non-dualists
Innate pāpa or adṛṣṭa Two kinds of conscious intention:
1) mithyājñānasaṃcetanā
2) tṛṣṇāsaṃcetanā arising from mithyājñāna
Three substantial defilements (mala):
1) āṇava,
2) māyīya,
3) kārma
Three forms of ignorance (mala):
1) āṇava = apūrṇaṃmanyatā,
2) kārma = śubhāśubhādisaṃskāra,
3) māyīya = bhinnavedyaprathā

3. The process of liberation

What happens to the initiand after the binding defilements are nullified with Śaiva mantras? An overview of the possible processes and outcomes described in the Mālinīvijayottara is given in figure 1. At time T+0 the bound soul is affected by a descent of grace (śaktisa-mbandha). This occurs at a certain time of self-reflection (kālaviśeṣa) and is dependent on the fitness of the candidate. If the descent of grace is of the rare, extremely intense variety (tīvratīvra), souls are liberated immediately (mu1). For others, at T+1, ignorance (ajñāna) is loosened and there arises a desire to go to a Śaiva guru (yiyāsā). At T+2 the guru performs the ritual intervention of initiation using efficacious Śaiva mantras. Liberation can take place either immediately afterward, or after death (mu2, mu3).[39]

Liberation after death

Figure 2: The default case: liberation after death

This account, however, glosses over an important additional event that takes place during initiation. It is not merely a ritual of eradication (kṣapaṇa), but also a ritual of conferring (dāna). The binding defilements (paśuvāsanāḥ) are destroyed and an essential self-knowledge (jñānasadbhāvaḥ) is bestowed.[40]

It is after elaborating on this dual power of mantras that Kṣemarāja cites Pramāṇavārttika 2.258cd–259ab and charges Dharmakīrti with failing to take this aspect into account:

Svacchandoddyota 5.88, S1 149v: yat tu

nālaṃ bījādisaṃsiddho42 vidhiḥ puṃsām ajanmane /
tailābhyaṅgāgnidāhādāv43 api muktiprasaṅgataḥ // (Pramāṇa-vārttika 2.258cd–259ab)

ityuktaṃ tais tat teṣām evopahāsyatām āviṣkaroti / yataḥ sthāvarajaṅgama-kṛtrimādyātmano viṣasya44 svakāryakaraṇaśaktipraśamanaṃ45 bījavad yan mantraiḥ kriyate tatrāpy etad vaktuṃ prāptam / atha tailābhyaṅgāder bīja eva śaktinirodhakṛttvaṃ na tu viśeṣakṛttvaṃ46 mantrāṇāṃ tu47 tatrāpīty u-cyate / tarhy acintyaprabhāvatvāt teṣāṃ pāśapraśamane’pi sāmarthyaṃ kiṃ na sahyate /

But their claim: A ritual admitted as effective for seeds and so on is not sufficient to end rebirth for persons, because of the undesirable conse-quence of liberation also [being brought about] by rubbing with sesame oil, or by burning with fire, and so on, only makes them objects of derision. For, in the case of a poison of either immobile, mobile, or artificial type,[41] mantras quell its power to bring about its natural effect just as in the case of the seed, and this objection [of rubbing with oil] can [therefore] also be raised in that case.[42] However (atha), anointing with oil etc. can only obstruct a capacity of the seed, but it is not able to add anything distinct, but it is said that mantras can do so. Therefore, because they have an inconceivable power, why can you not accept that they are also capable of neutralizing the bonds.

What kind of knowledge is this special kind of gnosis that is conferred by initiation? To determine this, Abhinavagupta proceeds with an heuristic evaluation in the opening section of his Tantrasāra. Knowledge, he says, is the cause of liberation, because it is the opposite of ignorance, which is the cause of bondage. Ignorance can be of two kinds, one present in the intellect (buddhigata) and the other implicit in individuality itself (pauruṣa). The former (buddhigata) is non-ascertainment (doubt) or wrong ascertainment (error). The latter (pauruṣa) is individualized differential cognition (vikalpasvabhāva) which causes saṃsāra. This pauruṣa form of ignorance is removed by initiation. But initiation cannot take place while intellectual ignorance persists. Intellectual ignorance is removed by cultivating the discernment (adhyavasāya) of what must be cultivated and what must be rejected. Figure 2 shows these forms of knowledge and ignorance in relation to initiation and death. To this can be added the idea of the jīvanmukta who develops gnosis before death, a theory not discussed here.

4. Kṣemarāja and the Saiddhāntikas

Kṣemarāja’s own teacher Abhinavagupta had placed little value on such supernatural displays as he does not subscribe to the probative view of initiation with the scales. He went as far as claiming that such pratyaya-miracles occurring during initiation with the scales are meant to give comfort to the simple-minded (mūḍhajana).[43] While both the dualists and the non-dualists accepted that a descent of grace was a prerequisite for liberation, they differed fundamentally on its underlying cause. The non-dualists refused to admit any causal factors at all, for to do so would have compromised their doctrine of divine autonomy (svātantryavāda). Kṣemarāja therefore refutes the rival Saiddhāntika theories of a karmic equilibrium and a maturation of defilement at great length.

The Saiddhāntikas, in turn, charged the non-dualists with a similarly specific catalogue of false doctrines:[44]

1) Īśvara would act without deliberation when he punishes and rewards souls without cause or motivation.

2) Īśvara would have to create all realities at once.

3) Īśvara would have to bestow all karmic rewards to all at once.

4) Souls would lose their true form during liberation and would be reborn.

5) The scriptural statement that defilement is substantial would make no sense.

To get an overview of the structure of Kṣemarāja’s central argument we can look to his own brief summary of it that he included in his commentary to Stavacintāmaṇi of Bhaṭṭanārāyaṇa (late 9th to early 10th cent. CE).[45] This pair of hymns reposed the question of grace as a dilemma: does the individual need to pacify the mind before liberating grace can enter, or is a calm mind the result of liberating grace?

Stavacintāmaṇi 117–118:[46] I waver–

O Lord, do you enter[47] awareness[48] when it is pellucid,[49]
or does it become pellucid because you have entered?

But this is how the question can be resolved:

Your controlling presence is itself the pellucidity of awareness.
It is perfection, it is the highest level.[50]

Neither option spelled out in the first stanza is acceptable to the non-dualists, for in either case Śiva remains beholden (sāpekṣa-) to some extrinsic factors or conditions necessary to trigger the descent of grace. Bhaṭṭanārāyaṇa’s second stanza presents the non-dualists solution: He identifies the active entrance (praveśa-) by Śiva’s liberating power of grace as Śiva’s controlling presence (tvadadhiṣṭhāna-), which is then reified as nothing other than the pellucid awareness that is the essence of the liberated state. Kṣemarāja explains the cpd. as follows: “Your controlling presence is nothing other than the unveiling of your autonomous powers by suspending immersion into the concealment of your true form.”[51]

Kṣemarāja’s commentary then rehearses his main attacks against the Saiddhāntikas. If they argue that the descent of liberating grace is caused by either the ripening of impurity (malaparipāka) or by a karmic equilibrium (karmasāmya) then we need to ask: What causes either of these two phenomena?[52] If the answer is that they are controlled by Śiva’s superintending power, then they are redundant, and we should just admit that power as the autonomous agency responsible for liberating grace. If the answer is that there is no cause, then we need to ask why the descent does not take place for everyone all at once.[53] If it is said that it takes place after a specific amount of time for each person, then how is it not the same as establishing a fixed time, since bondage[54] is for everyone beginningless?[55] If the answer is that for any given soul it eventually takes place somehow, at some unspecified time, then, unless we adduce some other dissimilar and sentient cause, we have the incoherence of impurity–unequivocally insentient because its intrinsic power is that of obstruction–producing a heterogeneous, sentient, effect in the form of maturation.[56] If it is claimed that the time we are talking about acts as an auxiliary cause, then, when asked what this time might be, no answer is forthcoming.[57] If it is argued that impurity gradually transforms into a different, mature form, then, unless we adduce another dissimilar cause such as heat[58] in the case of milk transforming into yoghurt, we have the incoherence of an impossible transformation into something heterogeneous.[59]

Kṣemarāja then makes the Saiddhāntika approximate the non-dualist position:

If you [dualist Saiddhāntikas] say: “This [transformation] will happen just in the same way as it does in the theory of [you] proponents of autonomous descent grace, for whom the variety of experiences due to karma, and also liberation, occur at a particular time, and for whom the relation of cause and effect relates māyā, time etc. in the universe which has god as the only agent,”[60] then an instance of the principle of tenuous connection is at hand.[61]

For Kṣemarāja the attempted rapprochement is unworkable, for the Saiddhāntikas do not accept the identity of Śiva (the liberator) and the bound soul (the one to liberated):

Because in the non-dualist’s theory, the lord himself, freely assuming the appearance of contraction, just as he appears as the various principles, so he also appears as [their] relation of cause and effect, that is to say as their fixed order, and also as the diversity of the respective experiences determined by karma which thus appear to be temporally sequentialized, but in all of this there is no individually [independent] reality for any of these temporal moments or karmas etc. Since [Śiva] projects in this way both the diversity of experience, as also, out of his autonomy, the diversity of [liberating] grace, there is no other here who is being punished or favored, and so this theory is faultless.[62]

Kṣemarāja subverts the charge of divine bias by explaining that in a non-dualist system there exists no ‘other’ who is more or less favored or punished.[63] A significant factor in this perspective, is that causation in the world of transmigration is itself nothing but an apparent phenomenon manifested by Śiva out of his free will. Abhinavagupta therefore distinguishes the causal relationship into two types: an absolute, or non-artificial causal relation (pāramārthikaḥ), and an artificial causal relation (kalpitaḥ). In the absolute causal relation Śiva is the only existing cause and agent. This is so because true agency (kartṛtva) can only be grounded in autonomy (svātantrya). The artificial causal relation of everyday experience is merely an appearance, amounting to no more than a belief in personal agency, as discussed in Vasudeva (2012–2014: 213–215). Even in the standard example of a potter who makes pots, Abhinavagupta claims that Śiva is the actual, underlying agent. In the sense that all artificial causation is merely apparent anyway, liberation is not really caused by any of the factors adduced by the Saiddhāntikas. Or rather, it is caused by the same absolute cause as everything else, Śiva’s will.

References and abbreviations

Acharya 2014 D. Acharya, On the Śaiva Concept of Innate Impurity (mala) and the Function of the Rite of Initiation. Journal of Indian Philosophy 42 (2014) 9–25.

Ajaḍapramātṛsiddhi Ajaḍapramātṛsiddhi: Siddhitrayī and Pratyabhijñā-kārikā-vṛtti of Rajanaka Utpala Deva, ed. M.K. Shāstrī. Srinagar 1921.

Bodhicaryāvatārapañjikā Bodhicaryāvatārapañjikā: Bodhicaryāvatāra of Śāntideva with the Commentary Pañjikā of Prajñākaramati, ed. Vaidya, P.L. Darbhanga 1960.

Eltschinger 2001 V. Eltschinger, Dharmakīrti sur les mantra et la perception du supra-sensible. Wien 2001.

Franco 1997 Eli Franco, Dharmakīrti on compassion and rebirth. Vienna 1997.

Goodall 2013 Tāntrikābhidhānakośa III. Ṭ–PH. Dictionnaire des termes techniques de la littérature hindoue tantrique. A Dictionary of Technical Terms from Hindu Tantric Literature. Wörterbuch zur Terminologie hinduistischer Tantren. Fondé sous la direction de Hélène Brunner, Gerhard Oberhammer et André Padoux. Direction éditoriale du troisième volume: Dominic Goodall et Marion Rastelli. Vienna 2013. Kataoka 2010 Kei Kataoka, A Critical Edition of Bhaṭṭa Jayanta’s Nyāyamañjarī: Jayanta’s View on jāti and apoha. Institute of Oriental Culture Bulletin 158 (2010) 168 (113)–220 (61).

Ked See Svacchandoddyota.

Kiraṇatantra Kiraṇatantra: Bhaṭṭa Rāmakaṇṭhas Commentary on the Kiraṇatantra,Vol. 1, Chapters 1–6, critical edition and annotated translation by Dominic Goodall. Pondicherry 1998.

Kiraṇavṛtti See Kiraṇatantra.

Mālinīvijayottara Mālinīvijayottara: Sri Mālinīvijayottara Tantram, ed. Madhusūdan Kaul Shāstrī. Srinagar 1922.

Manoramāṭīkā See Tantrarāja.

Mataṅgapārameśvara Mataṅgapārameśvara: Mataṅgapārameśvara, Kriyāpāda, Yoga-pāda, and Caryāpāda, with the commentary (-vṛtti) of Bhaṭṭa Rāmakaṇṭha on Kri-yāpāda 1.1–11.13, ed. N.R. Bhatt. Pondicherry 1982.

Mataṅgapārameśvaravṛtti See Mataṅgapārameśvara.

Nareśvaraparīkṣā Nareśvaraparīkṣā: Nareśvaraparīkṣā of Sadyojyotis with the commen-tary (-prakāśikā) of Bhaṭṭa Rāmakaṇṭha, ed. Madhusūdan Kaul Shāstrī. Srinagar 1926.

Netratantroddyota Netratantroddyota: The Netra Tantram, with Commentary by Kshema-rāja, 2 vols., ed. M.K. Shāstrī. Bombay 1926 & 1939.

Netroddyota See Netratantroddyota.

Niśvāsatattvasaṃhitā Niśvāsatattvasaṃhitā: The Niśvāsatattvasaṃhitā. The Earliest Sur-viving Śaiva Tantra, Volume 1, A Critical Edition & Annotated Translation of the Mūlasūtra, Uttarasūtra & Nayasūtra, edited by Dominic Goodall, in collaboration with Alexis Sanderson & Harunaga Isaacson, with contributions of Nirajan Kafle, Diwakar Acharya & others. Pondicherry 2015.

PV Edma Pramāṇavārttika: Dharmakīrti’s Pramāṇavārttika with a Commentary by Mano-rathanandin, ed. R. Sāṅkṛtyāyana. Journal of the Bihar and Orissa Reseach Society: New Series 24–26 (1938) 349–84.

PV Edmi Pramāṇavārttika: Pramāṇavārttika-Kārikā of Dharmakīrti. Sanskrit and Tibetan, ed. Yūsho Miyasaka. Acta Indologica 2 (1971/72).

PV Edpra Pramāṇavārttika: Pramāṇavārtikabhāshyam or Vārtikālaṅkāraḥ of Prajñāka-ragupta: Being a Commentary on Dharmakīrtis Pramāṇavārtikam, ed. R. Sāṅkṛ-tyāyana. Patna 1953.

Rauravasūtrasaṃgraha Rauravasūtrasaṃgraha: Surviving Chapters are published as the Vidyāpāda of the Rauravāgama In: Rauravāgama, Vol. I, ed. N.R. Bhatt. Pondicherry 1961.

S1 Svacchandatantroddyota, Śrīnagar acc. no. 1054-II. Śāradā. 411 folios.

Sāṃkhyakārikā See Yuktidīpikā.

Sanderson 1992 A. Sanderson, The Doctrine of the Mālinīvijayottaratantra. In: Ritual and Speculation in Early Tantrism. Studies in Honour of André Padoux, ed. T. Goudriaan. Albany 1992, 281–312.

Sanderson 2006 A. Sanderson, The Date of Sadyojyotis and Brhaspati. Cracow Indologi-cal Studies 8 (2006) 39–91.

Sanderson 2007 A. Sanderson, The Śaiva Exegesis of Kashmir. In: Tantric Studies in Memory of Hélène Brunner, ed. Dominic Goodall & André Pardoux. Pondichéry 2007, 231-442.

Sārdhatriśatikālottara Sārdhatriśatikālottarāgama: Sārdhatriśatikālottarāgama avec le commentaire de Bhaṭṭa Rāmakaṇṭha, ed. N.R. Bhatt. Pondicherry 1979.

Sarvajñānottara Sarvajñānottaratantra, NAK MS 1-1672. NGMPP Reel No. A 43/12. Palm-leaf, early Nepalese script. Described by Śāstri (1905: lxxiv–lxxv and 85–86). Also GOML MS D 5550 and IFP T. Nos. 334, 760, paper transcripts in Devanāgarī. The verse and chapter numeration used is that of Goodall’s edition in progress.

Śivasūtravārttika Śivasūtravārttika: Śivasūtravārttika of Varadarāja, also called Kṛṣṇa-dāsa, ed. Madhusudan Kaul. Srinagar 1925.

Stavacintāmaṇi Stavacintāmaṇi: Stavacintāmaṇi of Bhaṭṭa Nārāyaṇa with the commentary (-vivṛti) of Kṣemarāja, ed. Mukunda Rāma Śāstrī. Srinagar 1918.

Stavacintāmaṇi J1 Stavacintāmaṇi, Jammu ORL1329. Śāradā on paper. Contains marginal glosses drawn from Kṣemarāja’s commentary.

Stavacintāmaṇi R1 Stavacintāmaṇi, Raghunath Temple MS. 9632. Śāradā on paper. Con-tains marginal glosses drawn from Kṣemarāja’s commentary.

Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti: See Stavacintāmaṇi.

Svacchandoddyota Svacchandoddyota: The Svacchanda Tantram, with Commentary by Kshemarāja, 6 vols., ed. M.K. Shāstrī. Bombay 1921–1935.

Svāyambhuvasūtrasaṃgraha Svāyambhuvasūtrasaṃgraha: Svāyambhuvasūtrasaṃgraha, ed. Veṅkaṭasubrahmaṇyaśāstrī. Mysore 1937.

TĀK III Tāntrikābhidhānakośa: See Goodall 2013.

Tantrāloka Tantrāloka: Tantrāloka of Abhinavagupta with the Commentary (-viveka) of Rājānaka Jayaratha, ed. M.K. Śāstrī. Bombay/Srinagar 1918–1938.

Tantrālokaviveka See Tantrāloka.

Tantrarāja Tantrarājatantra: Tantrarājatantra with Manoramāṭīkā, ed. L. Sastri. Calcutta 1929.

Tattvasaṃgraha Tattvasaṃgraha: Le Tattvasaṃgraha “Compendium des Essences” de Sadyojyoti, ed. Pierre-Sylvain Filliozat. Bulletin de l’EFEO 77 (1988) 101–163.

Vasudeva 2004 Somadeva Vasudeva, The Yoga of the Mālinīvijayottaratantra. Pondicherry 2004.

Vasudeva 2012–2014 Somadeva Vasudeva, The Unconscious Experiencer: Bhoktṛtva in the Pramātṛbheda of the Trika. Journal of Indological Studies 24 (2012–2014) 203–230.

Vedamuthu 2006 Ebenezer R. Vedamuthu, Other Fermented and Culture-Containing Milks. In: Manufacturing Yogurt and Fermented Milks, ed. Ramesh C. Chandan. Ames, Iowa 2006, 295–308.

Yuktidīpikā Yuktidīpikā: Yuktidīpikā: the most significant commentary on the Sāṃkhyakā-rikā, critically edited by Albrecht Wezler and Shujun Motegi. Stuttgart 1998.

Footnotes and references:


PV Pramāṇasiddhi, 257cd–267 (Edmi).


For the Śaivas mantras are souls appointed by the cause deity Śiva to enable various effects. Mataṅga-pārameśvaravṛtti of Rāmakaṇṭha to Vidyāpāda 7.40cd–42ab: …śabdātiriktā ātmaviśeṣā eva mantrāḥ syuḥ…, “Mantras are specific souls, different from sounds.” Similarly, Mataṅgapārameśvara Vidyāpāda 7.42cd–43: vācyavācakabhedo’yaṃ suprasiddho mahāmune / mokṣārthaṃ suniyuktānāṃ vācyānāṃ kāraṇecchayā / niyuktā vācakatvena varṇāḥ śāstre śivodaye, “O great sage, this dichotomy of denoted and denoter is well-known. In Śaiva scripture, [certain] phonemes have, by the will of the cause-deity (Śiva = kāraṇa-), been prescribed as denoters of commissioned mantra[-souls], for the purpose of liberation.” Scil., both the mantra souls that are the vācyas, and the phonemes used that are the vācakas (sometimes also: śabdas), are considered to be mantras.


Prajñākaragupta: atha tailābhyaṅgasya tāvanmātram eva sāmarthyaṃ evaṃ sati dīkṣāyām api samānaṃ tathā / Manorathanandin: dīkṣāyāḥ prāg guroḥ paścāl lāghavād dīkṣayā na pāpaharaṇam asya dīkṣita-sya kiṃ tu gauravam evāsya kṛtaṃ sat mā bhūd iti kasmān na kalpyate / lāghavaṃ hi gauravavirodhi dṛśyamānaṃ tadabhāvam eva gamayen na pāpabhāvaṃ / pāpam eva gurv iti cen na pāpaṃ gurv amūrtito mūrtatvābhāvāt /


For this translation see Acharya 2014.


Subject: [dīkṣā-/mantra-]vidhiḥ, property to be proven: alam ajanmane, reason: dagdhapāpa[bīja]tvāt, example: dagdhabījavat.


Mataṅgapārameśvaravṛtti of Rāmakaṇṭha to Vidyāpāda 7.40cd–42ab: śabdātiriktā ātmaviśeṣā eva mantrāḥ syuḥ, “Mantras are specific souls, different from sounds.”


For an authoritative, early, Saiddhāntika exposition of mantravīrya see Mataṅgapārameśvara Caryāpāda 5.13cd–16 with Rāmakaṇṭha’s commentary. The history of the concept of mantravīrya has not yet been written. Kṣemarāja and his non-dualist co-religionists have settled on defining mantravīrya as pūrṇā-haṃtāvimarśa an awareness of the plenary self. See Śivasūtravārttika 1.20: mantravīryam iti proktaṃ pūrṇāhaṃtāvimarśanam, also Tantrālokaviveka 5.137: mantrayati svābhedena viśvaṃ parāmṛśatīti mantraḥ, paraḥ pramātā. For pūrṇāhaṃtāvimarśana, see Utpaladeva’s Ajaḍapramātṛsiddhi 22: yā saṃvidaḥ svātmamātraviśrāntiḥ sa eva pūrṇāhaṃtāvimarśasvabhāvo’haṃbhāvo’rthavyavasthāpako gīyate. On pūrṇāhaṃtā see Kṣemarāja’s Netroddyota 7.16 avataraṇikā: ahaṃ bhūtvā dehādipramātṛtā-praśamanena pūrṇāhaṃtām āviśyety arthaḥ.


Dharmakīrti criticises the Saiddhāntika’s extension of the observable blocking of the power to sprout in ordinary seeds, to invisible, karmic ‘seeds’ as unwarranted. If the two cases were really completely congruent, then actions such as burning etc. should also have congruent effects. Pakṣa: [Dīkṣā-/mantra-]vidhiḥ, sādhya: pāpaharaṇakṛt, hetu: prāg guror lāghavāt paścāt. Here, the idea that sin or karma has weight is anyatarāsiddha; it is only accepted by the Saiddhāntika.


For the compound dagdhabījam see Svāyambhuvasūtrasaṃgraha 3.15a and Rauravasūtrasaṃgraha 4.51c.


Kiraṇatantra 6.19: anekabhavikaṃ karma dagdhabījam ivāṇubhiḥ / bhaviṣyad api saṃruddhaṃ yene-daṃ tad dhi bhogataḥ //


For the dates of these authors see Sanderson 2006.


Tattvasaṃgraha of Sadyojyotis 38: śuddhiṃ vrajati tulāyāṃ dīkṣāto brahmahatyato mukhyāt / pratya-yato jānīyād bandhanavigamaṃ viṣakṣayavat //


Nareśvaraparīkṣā 3.83: śubhayā kriyayā vede kṣayaḥ pāpasya coditaḥ / dṛṣṭaś ca tatkṣayaḥ śaive kriyayaiva tulādinā. Rāmakaṇṭha, ad loc., is perhaps also more cautious, as he calls this claim a “supporting argument” (yukti) and not a “proof:” ihāpi dhaṭadīkṣāyām evaṃvidhā yuktir asty eveti na niryuktikaḥ kriyayā karmasaṃkṣayo gadita iti.


According to Sārdhatriśatikālottara 21 these are: [1.] burning without fire, [2.] killing and reviving trees, [3.] stunning, [4.] removing the major sins, proven by weighing on a scale, [5.] neutralizing poison, [6.] rendering infertile, [7.] removing possession, [8.] quelling a fever.


See the entry to pratyaya 2 in TĀK III.


This is how Aghoraśiva interprets the verse (yathā viṣavaidyo mantrasāmarthyena dhyānādinā ca karmaṇā viṣaharaṇaṃ karoti). It would also be quite natural to take the ācārya as the subject. While Aghoraśiva might not approve of the idea that an ācārya should engage in low status activities such as curing snake-bite, it is plausible that this is the intention of the Sarvajñānottara. ayam abhiprāyaḥ / prāyaścittakarmaṇā duṣkṛtebhyo mokṣaśravaṇād anaikāntikam etat / tataś ca yathā viṣavaidyo ma-ntrasāmarthyena dhyānādinā ca karmaṇā viṣaharaṇaṃ karoti tathācāryo’pi śivaśaktyupabṛṃhitena dīkṣākhyena karmaṇā malādipāśaviśleṣaṃ karotīty avirodhaḥ.


Sarvajñānottara Vidyāpāda 8: viṣāpahāraṃ kurute dhyānabījabalair yathā / kurute pāśaviśleṣaṃ tathācāryaḥ śivādhvaraiḥ //


Sarvajñānottara Vidyāpāda 9: mantrauṣadhabalair yadvat sannirodho viṣasya tu / tathā hi sarvapāśā-nāṃ sannirodhas tu dīkṣayā //


Rauravasūtrasaṃgraha 8: 3: yathā sūryodayaṃ prāpya tamaḥ kṣipraṃ vinaśyati / evaṃ dīkṣāṃ samā-sādya dharmādharmair vimucyate // “As darkness gets instantly destroyed after having reached the time of sunrise, in the same way one is freed from merits and demerits as soon as he receives initiation.” (Trans. Acharya 2014: 16.)


The fire concentration is one of the four (or five) dhāraṇās common in Saiddhāntika ṣaḍaṅgayoga, see Vasudeva 2004: 297–299.


Read as a hetugarbhaviśeṣaṇa.


Mataṅgapārameśvara Yogapāda 2.48–9ab: tulārohavidhāne ca prayogārthe balotkaṭā / vegavadbhiḥ karālāsrair mayūkhaiḥ saṃprayojitā // karoti vigatakleśaṃ dagdhapāpatanuṃ naram /


Sāṃkhyakārikā 13c: guru varaṇakaṃ tamaḥ. Yuktidīpikā ad loc.: tatra gurutvaṃ kāryasyādhogamahetur dharmaḥ, karaṇasya vṛttimandatā / varaṇam api kāryagataṃ ca dravyāntaratirodhānam / karaṇagatā cāśuddhiḥ prakāśapratidvand[ ]bhūtā /


Especially in chapter 6, the Puṃpāśeśvaraprakaraṇa.


See Sanderson 1992: 285.


“The Śaiva Mantramārga believed that all accumulated sin is removed by the rite of initiation, and also that this rite alone can remove it. But already in an early phase of the development of Śaiva ideology, the Pāśupata-Śaiva belief that initiation removes sin, permanently or otherwise, was met with strong criticism from the Buddhists, and they had to readjust their theory. For this, the Śaivas apparently resorted to those Vedic texts from which their Pāśupata predecessors had adapted and adopted the rite of initiation and related ideas. In these texts sin was depicted as innate impurity.” (Acharya 2014: 23)


“Bhaṭṭa Rāmakaṇṭha presents his exegesis in a fundamentalist spirit as a return to the original position set out in an earlier time by the founding fathers of his tradition with the purpose of rescuing it from the contamination it had suffered from attempts to assimilate its scriptures to alien perspectives, at one extreme to that of orthodox Brahmanism and at the other to that of the Śākta Śaivas.” (Sanderson 2007: 427-428)


Tantrāloka 13.293cd–295ab: śrīmatāpy Aniruddhena śaktim unmīlinīṃ vibhoḥ // vyācakṣāṇena mātaṅge varṇitā nirapekṣatā / sthāvarānte’pi devasya svarūponmīlanātmikā // śaktiḥ patantī sāpekṣā na kvāpīti suvistarāt. “The venerable Aniruddha too has taught that [Śiva’s liberating power] is autonomous when commenting on the Lord’s ‘power that awakens’ in the Tantra of Mataṅga [the Mataṅgapārameśvara, Vidyāpāda 4.44], explaining at great length that when the power of the Lord descends it is beholden to nothing, being an unfolding of the nature of the self that can take place even in the extreme case of immobile life-forms.” (Trans. Sanderson 2006: 81-82 n. 54)


Kiraṇavṛtti on Vidyāpāda 6.11cd–12.


For a discussion of Dharmakīrti’s proof of rebirth see Franco 1997.


tena] Edmi Edpra, tatas Edma.


tacchin] Edma Edpra, tac chin Edmi (understand as: te (du.) chinattīti tacchid).


karmety] Edmi Edma, karmāty° Edpra.


A gati is a rebirth destination, see Franco 1997: 69.


Manorathanandin: tadudbhūtas tarṣo mithyājñānaprabhavā tṛṣṇā / tābhyāṃ saṃprayukte cetane tadva-śād yā hīnasthānagatis taj janmety uktaṃ.


See also the discussion of this passage in Bodhicaryāvatārapañjikā 9: nanu ca satyadarśanād avidyādi prahīyate, tatprahāṇāt saṃskārādiprahāṇakrameṇa tṛṣṇāpi prahīyate / tṛṣṇāviparyāsamatī ca punarbhavotpattinimitte / tataś ca tayor abhāvāt tuṣarahitasya bījasyeva karmaṇaḥ sadbhāve’pi na kiṃcid vihanyate iti / taduktam–mithyājñānatadudbhūtatarṣasaṃcetanāvaśāt / hīnasthānagatir janma tyaktvā caitan na jāyate // iti / The reading of 261b is quite different: “Having given up this (most naturally etad here refers to janma, though logically we would expect a reference to ajñāna and tṛṣṇā) one is not born again.”


See Vasudeva 2004: 164–166, and the respective entries in the Tāntrikābhidhānakośa for definitions of these.


See Mālinīvijayottara 1.24ab.


Abhinavagupta interprets this passage slightly differently in his Tantrāloka.


Kṣemarāja in Svacchandoddyota 5.88, p. 76: dīyate jñānasadbhāvaḥ kṣīyante paśuvāsanāḥ / dānakṣa-paṇasaṃyuktā dīkṣā tenaeha kīrtitā.


The three sources of poison are toxic plants, venomous animals, and artificial or processed derivatives of these such as camphor. See Manoramāṭīkā to Tantrarāja 3.37.


The proposed inference is: [1. pakṣa:] A mantra-procedure [2. sādhya:] is sufficient to quell poison, [3. hetu:] because it suppresses the innate power to produce the normal effect. [4. dṛṣṭānta:] just as in notes case of a seed.” ([1] mantravidhiḥ [2] viṣapraśamanakṛt, [3] svakāryakaraṇaśaktinirodhakṛttvāt, [4] bījavat. Here the reason should be again dharmaviśeṣaviruddha, yet Dharmakīrti does not disavow the medical use of mantras. As we see Kṣemarāja adduces a different hetu: acintyaprabhāvatvāt, “because they have inconceivable power.” This alludes to a famous list (maṇimantrauṣadha-) of non-ordinary substances that can cancel the innate capacities of things. For example there exists a non-ordinary gem (maṇi = asbestos?) that can cancel fire’s capacity to burn, etc.


Tantrāloka 20.1cd: atha dīkṣāṃ bruve mūḍhajanāśvāsapradāyinīm //


Svacchandoddyota p. 96.


Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti 117–118: vitatya caitan mayaiva śrīsvacchandavivṛtau pañcamapaṭalānte dīkṣā-samarthanāvasare vicāritam, “I myself have analyzed this in detail in my Svacchandavivṛti, at the end of the fifth chapter in the context of justifying initiation.”


The verses are introduced with the assertion that the descent of divine grace is not beholden to anything (nirapekṣa), Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti 117–118: idānīṃ nirapekṣo bhavacchaktipāta eva cidānandagha-nasvātmasamāveśamayabhaktibhājo janān saṃpādayati, na tu karmasāmyamalaparipākādihetuko’sau, nāpi bhavacchaktyadhiṣṭhānān malasya krameṇa paripāka ity etat ślokadvayena āha, “Now, with two verses he states that your descent of grace, which is not dependent [on anything], directly perfects persons who are filled with devotion, by which is meant an immersion into one’s own self, which is a homogeneous bliss of consciousness.”


Kṣemarāja glosses this as “preside over with your power:” niviśase–svaśaktyadhiṣṭhānaṃ karoṣi.


Kṣemarāja: manasi–saṃvedane.


Kṣemarāja expands this to subsume the two theories of the Saiddhāntikas, the ripening of impurity (malaparipāka) and karmic equilibrium (karmasāmya): prasanne–paripakvamale saṃjātakarmasāmye vā sati (sati] Ed, manasi sati J1mg R1mg).


Stavacintāmaṇi 117–118: prasanne manasi svāmin kiṃ tvaṃ niviśase kim u / tvatpraveśāt prasīdet tad iti dolāyate janaḥ // niścayaḥ punar eṣo’tra tvadadhiṣṭhānam eva hi / prasādo manasaḥ svāmin sā siddhis tat paraṃ padam //


Kṣemarāja: tvadadhiṣṭhānaṃ–svarūpagopanānimajjanena tvatsvatantraśaktyunmīlanam (tvat-] Ed, tat- J1mg) eva kevalaṃ manasaḥ saṃvedanasya prasādo, na tu malaparipākakarmasāmyādi kiṃ cit.


Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti 117–118: tathā hi yadi malaparipākaḥ śaktipātasya hetuḥ karmasāmyaṃ vā, tad api tarhi kiṃhetukaṃ? samadhiṣṭhātrī bhagavacchaktir iti taddhetukam iti ced alaṃ tena, bhagava-cchaktir eva svatantrānugrāhikā bhaviṣyati.


Ibid.: ahetukam iti cet sarvasya yugapat kiṃ na bhaviṣyati.


Most naturally “the beginning point of bondage,” cf. Alaka on Haravijaya 6.22: bandhakoṭiḥ–prakṛ-tyādibandhanadhārā.


Ibid.: kasmiṃś cit kāle bhavatīti cet sarveṣāṃ bandhakoṭeḥ anāditvāt kālaniyamaḥ kiṃ na kṛtaḥ.


Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti 117–118: tat kadā cit kasya cit kathaṃ cit bhavatīti cen malasya svaśaktyā nirodhakatvenāvasthitasya jaḍasya vijātīyakāraṇānupraveśaṃ vinā paripākalakṣaṇavilakṣaṇakāryaja-nanānupapattiḥ /


Ibid.: kaś cid eva kālo’tra sahakārikāraṇam iti cet, ko’sau iti praśne nottaraṃ labhyate /


Milk needs to be maintained for several hours at a temperature of 110–120 degrees F to produce dadhi. See Vedamuthu (2006: 298ff.).


Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti 117–118: pariṇamanmalaḥ paripākātmakaṃ viśeṣam etīti ced atrāpi dugdhada-dhipariṇāma iva uṣṇasparśasya virodhinaḥ kāraṇasya ananupraveśe vilakṣaṇapariṇāmānupapattiḥ /


Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti 117–118: yathā svatantraśaktipātavādipakṣe karmabhogavaicitryaṃ muktiś ca kālaniyamena, bhagavadekakartṛke ca jagati māyākālādīnāṃ krameṇa kāryakāraṇabhāvaḥ, tathaiva etad bhaviṣyatīti cec cāṣapañcāśanyāya āyātaḥ.


For the maxim of tenuous linkage see Kataoka 2010: 72–76 on Bhaṭṭa Jayanta’s expression: na cāṣeṇa pañcāśad bhavitum arhati. He explains: 1. cāṣa and pañcāśad both share the same sound cāṣa (=cāśa). 2. pañcāśad means fifty in number 3. Therefore cāṣas, i.e. a flock of the blue-jay (cāṣāṇāṃ samūhaḥ), are fifty in number. We could consider emending our passage to cāṣapañcāśanyāya, but the expression cāśapañcāśanyāya with the palatal sibilant is well attested in Kashmirian works, so we may also rather consider cāśa an orthographical variant for cāṣa.


Stavacintāmaṇivivṛti 117–118: yatas tatpakṣe bhagavān eva svātantryād gṛhītasaṃkocābhāso yathā tattattattvātmanā bhāti, tathā tadgataniyatapaurvāparyātmakakāryakāraṇabhāvābhāsātmanāpi niyata-karmatatphalavaicitryātmanāpi kramābhāsamayena, na tv atra kālakarmādeḥ kasyāpi nijaṃ tattvam astīti yathāsāv itthaṃ bhogavaicitryam ābhāsayati, tathā svasvātantryād anugrahavaicitryam apīti nātra nigrahānugrahabhāk kaś cid anyo’stīti niravadya evāyaṃ pakṣaḥ /


Ibid.: idam atra tattvaṃ, yac citiśaktir eva bhagavatī svasvātantryād gṛhītasaṃkocā cittabhūmiṃ saṃ- sāryātmarūpāṃ bahuśākhām ābhāsya, punaḥ svecchayaiva kvacit saṃkocaṃ praśamayya, pūrṇatayā sphuratīty eva tat paraṃ padam, “This is the truth here: when the blessed power of consciousness out of her own autonomy accepts contraction and diffuses into the level of citta and makes herself appear to possess many offshoots, and then again out of her own autonomy loosens the contraction in some region and flashes forth as full, that is the highest state.”

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