Vaisheshika-sutra with Commentary

by Nandalal Sinha | 1923 | 149,770 words | ISBN-13: 9789332869165

The Vaisheshika-sutra 2.2.18, English translation, including commentaries such as the Upaskara of Shankara Mishra, the Vivriti of Jayanarayana-Tarkapanchanana and the Bhashya of Chandrakanta. The Vaisheshika Sutras teaches the science freedom (moksha-shastra) and the various aspects of the soul (eg., it's nature, suffering and rebirth under the law of karma). This is sutra 8 (‘causes of doubt or disbelief—continued’) contained in Chapter 2—Of the Five Bhutas, Time, and Space—of Book II (of substances).

Sūtra 2.2.18 (Causes of Doubt or Disbelief—continued)

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration, Word-for-word and English translation of Vaiśeṣika sūtra 2.2.18:

दृष्टञ्च दृष्टवत् ॥ २.२.१८ ॥

dṛṣṭañca dṛṣṭavat || 2.2.18 ||

dṛṣṭam—that which is seen; , and—dṛṣṭa-vat, like that which was seen.

18. And that which is seen, resembles that which was seen—(this also is the source of Doubt.)—97.

Commentary: The Upaskāra of Śaṅkara Miśra:

(English rendering of Śaṅkara Miśra’s commentary called Upaskāra from the 15th century)

Doubt is two-fold: that which relates to external objects, and that which relates to internal objects. And that which relates to external objects, is also tow fold: where the object is visible, and where the object is not visible. Of these, Doubt, in which the object is visible, may be illustrated as the uncertainty whether it be a post or a person, which arises on seeing sonic object distinguished by height; and Doubt, in which the object is not visible, is such as when on seeing the horns only in the body of a cow or a gayal (Bos gavaeus), etc., which is concealed by the intervention of a bush, etc., the uncertainty arises, “whether it be a cow or a gayal.” In fact, in the latter case also the Doubt really relates to the property of the horn, i.e., whether the horns are the horns of a cow or of a gayal. The statement of the two-foldness of Doubt is however, a figure of speech. Now, the Genus (i.e., Common property) which is the source of Doubt, raises Doubt by being observed either in more than one object or one object. He explains the first kind:

[Read sūtra 2.2.18 above]

Height, which is seen, is the source of Doubt. ‘Dṛṣṭavat’ is formed by ‘vati,’ i.e., the affix of similarity. Thus, something similar to the previously seen post and person, lies before. The meaning is that the height, which is observed in what lies before, is a source of Doubt, because it has been previously observed (in more than one object).—18.

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