Siddhanta Sangraha of Sri Sailacharya

by E. Sowmya Narayanan | 2008 | 30,562 words

Siddhanta Sangraha Chapter 40 (English translation), entitled “the refutation of other non-substances” as included in the critical edition and study. The Siddhanta Samgraha is a Sanskrit philosophical text dealing with Vishishtadvaita in five hundred Sanskrit verses. It was written by Shri Shailacarya (18th century) and closely follows the philosophy of Vedanta Deshika (13th century).

Chapter 40 - The Refutation of Other Non-substances

463. This potency is also applicable to the other qualities stated by the vaiśeṣikas. Therefore, there is no fallacy of gaurava.

464. The quality namely ‘Oneness’ (ekatva) is not different from the objects and also it is the potency of that particular object.[1] Here a doubt may arise that if the 'One ness' in the object is perceived through the sense organs and the ‘potency’ of the object is not perceived by the sense organs then how can we accept both aspects as one? It is replied that the potency is also stated as pratyakṣa (i.e.) which is cognized through the senses. So there is nothing wrong in accepting śakti as pratyakṣa.

465. According to naiyāyikas the dvitva, tritva etc., are the saṅkhya viśeṣa (specific qualities of number) or apekṣābuddhi janya (that which arises by the distinctive knowledge of two objects) like ekatva. But this is not accepted by us, as the apekṣābuddhi (the distinctive knowledge of two things) itself is the cause for dvitva, tritva etc., and there is no need for the other function namely, Vyāsajya vritti [vṛtti?] (apekṣābhuddhi janya).

466. According to naiyāyikas the pariṇāma (dimension) is four fold; they are hrasvatva (short), dīrgatva (long), aṇutva (atomic), and mahatva (large). This is due to the change in the dimension of the substances (avayava tāratamya).

As the change in the dimension of the substances is accepted by both, there is no need for the dinstinction of pariṇāma, which is not different from shape. The measurement (pariṇāma) of an image (tūlapiṇḍa) is nothing but the relation among the ingredients of the substances.[2]

467. According to naiyāyikas, the distinctness (prtaktva [pṛtaktva?]) is the special cause of conventional expressions such as ‘this is distinct from that’. But this view is not accepted by us as a separate quality other than the (bheda) difference. The vibhāga (disjunction) is also not accepted by us because it is nothing but the absence of saṃyoga (conjunction).

468. The remoteness and the proximity of the things is due to the words expressings remoteness and proximity and it is two fold. Spatial (deśa kṛta) which is caused by space and temporal which is caused by time (kālakṛta). The above two divisions are based on the differences (tāratamya) of remoteness and proximity and it is not accepted as a different quality.[3]

469. The view of Vaidikas is that even the heaviness (gurutva) is the potency which favours the objects to fall down (patanānukūla śakti) or which is caused by the association of more heavy parts and not as the different quality.[4]

470-471. It has been well established that the fluidity (dravatva) and the viscidity (sneha) is also not different qualities other than the potency.[5] The five qualities namely, icchā (desire), dveṣa (hatred), sukha (pleasure), duḥkha (pain), prayatna (effort) are the sub-divisions of knowledge and not different from it. This has been clearly elucidated in Vedārtha Saṅgraha.

472. According to naiyāyikas the dharma (virtue) and adharma (non-virtue) which are caused by the regular observance and non-observance of duties as per Vedas and are the qualities of jīvas. But this view is not accepted by us because the dharma and adharma are nothing but the favourable and unfavourable resolve of the Supreme. The scriptures state that the good results and bad results are produced by the association of dharma (noble deeds) and adharma (ignoble deeds).

473. The momentary actions (kṣaṇika karma) cannot become the direct cause for gaining the future results, and for that purpose we have to subscribe a means (dvāra) which is nothing but the favourable and unfavourable resolve of the Lord. This has been explained by the scriptures. Therefore, dharma and adharma of the jīvas are not the means for gaining future results.

474. Therefore, it is to be understood from the scriptural statements that the performance of the enjoined duties (vihita karma) alone produce the favourable disposition of the Lord, who is the inner self of all.

475. As per the statement of the Supreme Self in the Bhagavad Gītā that a person by following the necessary duties as prescribed by the scriptures attains the grace of the divine and through that he gets the result of his action. This view has also been emphasized by the other śāstra texts.

476. From the statement of the śastras that ‘dharma kṣarati kīrtanāt’ (dharma gets destroyed when it is publicized by one’s own self). Here the relationship between the destroyer and the destroyed is accepted by everyone.

477. The śrutis and the smṛtis are the commands of the Lord (ājñārūpa). This is the statement of the Supreme. According to Him, by following one obtains the grace of the Lord and by violating the same incur the displeasure of God. And, such a person is not a vaiṣṇava though he is devoted to Him.[6] Therefore, the scriptures are to be regarded.

478. The concept of apūrva advocated by the mīmāṃsakas is nothing but the favourable and the unfavourable will of the Supreme. The above pleasure and displeasure of the Lord is achieved which results in various degrees of apūrva.

479. According to vaiśeṣikas the bhāvanā (reminiscent impression) is the saṃskāra (latent impression) which is the result of anubhava and which causes recollection (smṛti). But the anubhava is not the direct cause for smṛti and it generates the saṃskāra and then smṛti.

According to our system the knowledge (dharmabhūtajñāna) which is present in the atman becomes the anubhava and then it becomes the saṃskāra and then smṛti. So the knowledge has all the above three stages is nothing but a form of knowledge and not a different quality.[7]

480. The other two saṃskāras accepted as the qualities by the naiyāyikas are the velocity and elasticity. But the velocity and the elasticity is not accepted as the separate quality. The velocity is the adjectival feature of the kriyā or action. So it is the potency called atiśaya. The elasticity is the quality of the related parts (avayava saṃyoga). This unseen relation (vilakṣaṇa saṃyoga) is also included in potency. Therefore, the three types of saṃskāras are not treated as a separate quality.[8]

481. Karma is of the nature of motion which is the relation for reaching one place to the other and not accepted as the cause of that movement.[9] It is the relationship between the knowledge and the activity of motion.

According to vaiśeṣikas the sāmānya (universal) is that which is eternal one and which is present in many things (i.e.) ‘nityamekam anekānugatam sāmānyam’. Here the jāti namely, ‘anekānugata’ is not accepted by us. Though the forms are different the knowledge of ‘ekākāra pratīti or sāmānya’ is due to the similarity (sādṛśya) present in these forms. The jāti is nothing but the configuration or form of that particular object which is the cause of distinction from other objects.

The quality which is present in the particular object is called as Viśeṣa (particularity). Particularity is the differentiating feature that is present in eternal substances.[10]

482. Inherence (samavāya) is the eternal relation and not different from it. Non-existence (abhāva) is that which is not different from existence.[11] This has been accepted by sūtrakāra.

483. Anterior non-existence (prāgabhāva) is the state of the lump of clay which exists prior to the origination of the pot, and it is not different from the state of the lump of clay. Destruction (pradvaṃsābhāva) is nothing but the destruction of the state of the lump of clay and the state after the origination of the pot.[12]

484. Absolute non-existence (atyantābhāva) is that which exists in the existence of two objects. When the two objects are present, in which the existence of one thing is not perceived. For instance, the ‘potness’ exists in the pot and not the ‘clothness’. Similarly, both potness and clothness cannot exist simultaneously in pot. The absolute non-existence of the clothness in the pot is nothing but the innate quality of the pot.[13]

485. The distinct attribute (asādhāraṇa dharma) of an object is that which negates the in-valid knowledge (bhrama) of the particular object and making us to know the object with its exclusive nature. That is, the illusory identity of the snake is removed by the knowledge of the true knowledge of the ‘ropenes’. Therefore, all these aspects are the distinct attributes of the object that distinguishes from the rest.

486. Only the six substances (avyakta, kāla, jīva, īśvara, dharmabhūtajñāna and nityavibhūti) and the ten nonsubstances are stated as the realities (tattvas). According to Śrī Vedānta Deśika there is neither more nor less than the above classification.

Footnotes and references:


See Nyāya Siddhāñjana, pp.348-351.


Ibid. pp. 345-348.


Ibid, pp. 351-364.


Cf. [...] See Nyāya Siddhāñjana, pp.332-33.


Cf. See Nyāya Siddhāñjana, pp.334-338.94. Nyāya Siddhāñjana, pp.338-339.


Cf. [... (see source document for quotation)]


Cf. Nyāya Siddhāñjana pp.338-339.


See Nyāya Siddhāñjana, pp.339-341.


Cf. [...] Nyāya Siddhāñjana, p.364.


Nyāya Siddhāñjana, pp.369-375


See Tattva Muktā Kalāpa, V, 129.


Ibid, 130.


Ibid, 131.


Rasasastra category This concludes The Refutation of Other Non-substances according to Vishishtadvaita philosophy explained by Shri Shailacarya. This book follows the model of Vedanta Deshika although the Vishishta Advaita school was originally expounded by Shri Ramanuja. Vishishta-Advaita is one of the various sub-schools of Vedanta which itself represents one of the six orthodox schools of Hindu Philosophy. They highlight the importance of the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita and the Brahma Sutras.

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