The Tattvasangraha [with commentary]

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

This page contains verse 622 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 622.

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

समाश्रिताः क्वचिच्छब्दा विनाशित्वादिहेतुतः ।
घटदीपादिवत्तच्च किल व्योम भविष्यति ॥ ६२२ ॥

samāśritāḥ kvacicchabdā vināśitvādihetutaḥ |
ghaṭadīpādivattacca kila vyoma bhaviṣyati || 622 ||

“Sounds must subsist in something,—because of their perishability and such other characters; like the jar, the lamp-flame and such things;—and this something must be ākāśa”.—(622)


Kamalaśīla’s commentary (tattvasaṃgrahapañjikā):

So far the four kinds of Substance, ending with Air [i.e. Earth, Water, Fire and Air] have been discarded;—the Substance called ‘Soul’ has already been discarded in the chapter on ‘Soul’;—the Author next proceeds to deny the remaining four kinds of Substance—viz.:—Ākāśa, Time, Space and Mind; [and to that end, sets forth the arguments whereby the other party seeks to establish their existence]:—[see verse 622 above]

The existence of the substance called ‘Ākāśa’ is sought to be proved by the other party in the following manner:—

“There must be a Substance named Ākāśa, permanent, one and all-pervasive, having sound for its indicative; sound is its indicative in the sense that it is its quality.—This argument may be formulated as follows:—Those things that are equipped with qualities like perishability and producibility, must subsist in something else;—and the ‘substratum’ of sound can only be Ākāśa, as that alone has the requisite capacity. Because, the said sound cannot be the quality of the four substances,—Earth, Water, Fire and Air,—(a) because, while being perceptible, it is not preceded by any quality in its Cause,—(b) because it does not last as long as the Substance lasts,—and (c) because it is perceived in a place other than its substratum;—and the qualities of all tangible things have been found to be otherwise than all this.—The qualification ‘while being perceptible’ has been added with a view to those qualities in the Atom which are produced by Fire-contact.—Nor can Sound be a quality of the Soul;—(a) because it is perceptible by an external sense-organ,—(b) because it is perceptible by other Souls,—(c) because it is perceived as distinct from the ‘I-notion’; while all qualities of the Soul, such as pleasure and the rest are otherwise than all this.—Sound cannot be a quality of Space, Time and Mind,—because it is apprehended by the Auditory Organ.—Thus, by elimination, Sound can be the quality of Ākāśa, of which, therefore, it becomes the indicative.—This Ākāśa, having Sound as its only common Indicative, and having no other specific indicatives, must be one;—and as having its qualities perceptible everywhere, it must be all-pervading;—and having a quality, and itself not subsisting in anything else, it must be a substance;—and as it is not created (by any one), it must be permanent.”

Such is the process of reasoning put forward by the other party (in proof of Ākāśa as a Substance).

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