Vakyapadiya of Bhartrihari

by K. A. Subramania Iyer | 1965 | 391,768 words

The English translation of the Vakyapadiya by Bhartrihari including commentary extracts and notes. The Vakyapadiya is an ancient Sanskrit text dealing with the philosophy of language. Bhartrhari authored this book in three parts and propounds his theory of Sphotavada (sphota-vada) which understands language as consisting of bursts of sounds conveyi...

This book contains Sanskrit text which you should never take for granted as transcription mistakes are always possible. Always confer with the final source and/or manuscript.

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration and English translation of verse 3.14.622:

सादृश्यं योग्यता कैश्चिदनावभ्युपगम्यते ।
यत् तु मूर्तिगतं साम्यं तत् सहेनाभिधीयते ॥ ६२२ ॥

sādṛśyaṃ yogyatā kaiścidanāvabhyupagamyate |
yat tu mūrtigataṃ sāmyaṃ tat sahenābhidhīyate || 622 ||

622. Some believe that the yogyatā which is expressed by anu is really resemblance whereas resemblance in concrete substances is expressed by saha.


[Another way of looking at this matter is now explained. The ‘fitness’ (yogyatā) which is conveyed by the word anu is resemblance (sādṛśya) considered to be one of the meanings of yathā. In that sense, the compound can take place. One can say, for instance: anurūpam surūpo vahati = ‘the good-looking person wears what is similar to or in keeping with his ornaments.’ Thus, anurūpam is an avyayībhāva formed in the sense of resemblance (one of the meanings of yathā) to rūpa = ornamentation. The meaning yathā, namely, fitness is connected with or based upon resemblance, which is a mere guṇa, quality. The resemblance which is found in objects, substances, and is due to particular shapes is expressed by saha, as in sasakhi. This kind of resemblance is referred to in the sūtra by the word sādṛśya, whereas the word yathā in the rule refers to resemblance in qualities. Thus, they have different scopes. If, on the other hand, yogyatā is understood as something quite different from resemblance, that is, as fitness, then the former explanation for separate mention of śādṛśya in the rule must be accepted.]

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