Vaisheshika-sutra with Commentary

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

The Vaisheshika-sutra 9.1.14, 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 4 (‘the yogin’s perception of substance, attribute and action...’) contained in Chapter 1—Of Ordinary Perception of Non-Existence and of Transcendental Perception—of Book IX (of ordinary and transcendental cognition...).

Sūtra 9.1.14 (The Yogin’s perception of Substance, Attribute and Action...)

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration, Word-for-word and English translation of Vaiśeṣika sūtra 9.1.14:

तत्समवायात्कर्मगुणेषु ॥ ९.१.१४ ॥

tatsamavāyātkarmaguṇeṣu || 9.1.14 ||

tat-samavāyāt—from combination with that, i; e., substance. karma-guṇeṣu—in respect of actions and attributes.

14. (Perception) of Actions and Attributes (arises) from (their) combination with Substance.

Commentary: The Upaskāra of Śaṅkara Miśra:

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

[Full title: The Yogin’s perception of Substance, Attribute and Action, popularly explained]

It may be objected: In them (i.e., substances, etc.) cognition (of the Yogins) is not mental, inasmuch as the mind is not self-dependent outside its sphere. Nor is it a product of the external senses; for, they apprehend objects present as being connected with them, depend upon the development of colour, etc., as the case may be, to the degree of perceptibility, and particularly depend also upon light, etc.

In anticipation of this objection, he proves ‘proximity’ (i.e., the medium of cognition) in the case of certain predicables, and says:

[Read sūtra 9.1.14 above]

“Perceptual cognition is produced”—this is the complement (of the aphorism.) If the elemental senses are dependent upon some presentation or contiguity (of objects to them for the apprehension of those objects by them), then from the combination in that which is in conjunction with the mind of the perceiver, cognition of the genera of attributes combined or inhering in the ultimate atoms, ether, space and time, is produced and in the case of other substances, since there is conjunction with them of various sterile (seed-less?) minds, favourably directed towards, or taken over for, the experience of mortal coils, cognition is produced in respect of the attributes, etc., of those substances through their combination in those substances which are thus conjoint with those minds. This is declared here, regard being had to, or in view of easy demonstration. In fact, in the case of the external senses as well as of the mind, it is the virtue or power born of yoga that constitutes the ‘proximity’ or presentation to the senses, inasmuch as all uncertainty or impossibility of proof is set at rest by it alone. The drinking up of the ocean by Agastya (the sage), and the conversion of the kingdom of Daṇḍaka into a forest are examples in point.—14.

Commentary: The Vivṛti of Jayanārāyaṇa:

(English extracts of Jayanārāyaṇa Tarkapañcānana’s Vivṛti or ‘gloss’ called the Kaṇādasūtravivṛti from the 17th century)

It may be urged that omniscience is not possible or proved in the Yogin, for though there be perception of substances, there is no such cognition of attributes, etc. Accordingly he says:

The meaning is that from combination of ‘that,’ i.e., conjunction of mind facilitated by the power or virtue born of Yoga or holy communion, there is produced in the Yogin, whether united or in course of union, perception of attributes and actions.

* * * The term ‘of actions and attributes’ is indicative, and genus, etc., also are to be understood. In a like manner, should be understood perception produced from super-ordinary or hyper-physical presentation or contiguity in the form of Sāmānya-lakṣaṇa or general implication, and jñāna-lakṣaṇa or implication of cognition.

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