The Tattvasangraha [with commentary]

by Ganganatha Jha | 1937 | 699,812 words | ISBN-10: 8120800583 | ISBN-13: 9788120800588

This page contains verse 476 of the 8th-century Tattvasangraha (English translation) by Shantarakshita, including the commentary (Panjika) by Kamalashila: dealing with Indian philosophy from a Buddhist and non-Buddhist perspective. The Tattvasangraha (Tattvasamgraha) consists of 3646 Sanskrit verses; this is verse 476.

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration and English translation by Ganganath Jha:

क्षणिकानित्यतालीढं सर्वं चेद्वस्तु तत्कथम् ।
कर्मतत्फलसम्बन्धकार्यकारणतादयः ॥ ४७६ ॥

kṣaṇikānityatālīḍhaṃ sarvaṃ cedvastu tatkatham |
karmatatphalasambandhakāryakāraṇatādayaḥ || 476 ||

“If all things are obsessed by non-permanence, in the form of ‘momentariness’, then how can there be any relation between action and its result (reaction), or between the cause and its effect and so forth?”—(476)


Kamalaśīla’s commentary (tattvasaṃgrahapañjikā):

The Author now proceeds to examine the doctrine of Relation between Actions and their Results, the Law of Action and Reaction, mentioned in the Introductory verses; and starts off with an objection from the standpoint of that doctrine, against the Doctrine of ‘Perpetual Flux’:—[see verse 476 above]

The Text speaks of ‘non-permanence in the form of momentariness’, with a view to exclude that ‘non-permanence’ which does not consist in momentariness; the meaning being—‘ifngs are held by you to be obsessed by that non-permanence which belongs to momentary things’—then, how could there be any such relations as the one subsisting between Actions and their Results and so forth, which are recognised among men and in the scriptures?—The expression ‘and so forth’ is meant to include the means of cognising the cause and its effect, the Recognition following after Apprehension, the longing for one thing aroused by the seeing of another thing, the notion of Bondage and Liberation, Remembrance, Decision following after Doubt, seeking for something kept by oneself, the cessation of curiosity for things already seen and such other hosts of grounds for objection raised by the evil-minded.—What is meant is that if a doctrine is contrary to notions current among people and recognised by the scriptures, it can never secure acceptance; hence the Doctrine of ‘Perpetual Flux’ is open to the objection that it is annulled by universally accepted notions.—For instance, it is well known among people that the result of the good or bad action is experienced by that same man who did the act; when a good or bad act has been done by Devadatta, the result of that act—agreeable or disagreeable,—is not experienced by Yajñadatta. Nor is such an idea countenanced in the scriptures, where we read—‘When the action has been done by this person, who else will experience its results?’—Such a notion is contrary to the doctrine of the ‘Perpetual Flux’ of things; as under that doctrine there cannot be any one entity who would do the act and experience its result; so that the said doctrine is clearly open to the criticism that it involves the anomaly of ‘the disappearance of the action done by the Person himself and the befalling upon him of the effect of what was not done by him’,—(476)

The following Text explains how the doctrine is open to this criticism:—[see verse 477 next]

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