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Pujya Dr. K.C. Varadachari - Volume -2

The most significant feature of this school (dar’sana) is that it holds that sensory and inferential knowledge are mediated knowledge and as such not the absolute knowledge.  The first is mediated by senses and it is so very individuated from one soul (jiva) to another and also it differs from several points – or points of view.  In other words, it is clear that every proposition about sense-knowledge is strictly conditioned by factors of space, time, point of view, nature of the sense organs and the action.  Similarly inference which is sense-dependent is conditioned not only by sense but also by the laws of inference – the principles of relational thought – the most important being the law of contradiction and the law of excluded middle which are absolute in so far as one cannot affirm the truth of two contradictories or their co-existence at the same time.  The reality that we meet with is incapable of being squeezed into the patterns of anumana, inferential reason, since it is clear that almost all facts of reality present the reality of contradictory standpoints and the impossibility of dichotomy as such, for every dichotomy struggles to get rid of it by a dialectic of opposites so to speak resulting in a synthesis of opposites.


            The Ultimate knowledge is available to unmediated consciousness that is the natural condition of the soul in freedom – that is freedom from all karmic bodies and conditions.  Karma produces the body which limits the knowing function or the consciousness which is the essence of the jiva.  In its purest conditioned or of unlimited being, the soul is not only omniscient but also omnipervasive.  The limitations of karma reduce the size of the soul (or soul’s consciousness since the two are inseparable) to the size of its body of karma; this might be from that of a bacterial cell or gnat to that of Brahma, from the infinitismal to the infinite.  One is as big as one’s body in this sense that it is thus far alone that we discern its action or activity. or activity. or activity.


            Activity thus limits the body of the soul, and produces these limits so to speak.  The theory of interconvertibility of energy into matter (karma into pudgala) in fact reveals the basic form of the soul-body nature.  In fact if the soul desists from action then there is the reconversion of the matter into energy and liberation may proceed till all energy is further converted into consciousness.  This last step of course was not taken as Jaina limited himself to reconversion of all matter into energy which he did through tapas (austerity), which further he threw out of the soul ultimately.


            Perfect knowledge (Samyaqdar’sana) that is true in an absolute sense is available to those who have reached this stage of freedom from all limitations of body and action.  This is direct consciousness accomplishing the truth for the self.  What all souls who have attained this state have is the absolute knowledge – it is the knowledge of the Arhats or Jinas.  This is comparable to the Saccidananda of the Veda.  We may call it integral or wholly unconditioned knowledge – knowing which one may be said to know All.  In any case Jainas refused to accept mere scriptural knowledge as true for they have seen that this knowledge through scripture is mediated even then.  Direct Awareness of Truth or Reality which is purely unconditionedly spiritual alone is Absolute knowledge.  The Veda falls below it, Veda would demand yet a verification by direct attainment.  Therefore hearing the Veda settles nothing and there are several versions too and we have yet to get a mimamsa to decide as between the texts as to which is true or how to make them non-contradictory.


            Brahmanubhava like Kevalanubhava is beyond the scripture.  We can see that even Sri Krsna makes the reference to a knowledge or attainment beyond the Veda – traigunya visaya Veda, nistraigunay bhava …..


            Thus of the three kinds of knowledge, Saksatkara or unmediated and unconditioned Omniscience and omnipervasiveness is absolute knowledge – available to the Arhats and the Jinas.  Every soul can attain this condition through strenuous practice of the tapas comprising the triratna.


            The other two are mediated and conditioned knowledge.  They are relatively true.  Knowing gives truth but every truth can become only partially true or even become false (which is truth in a sense but distorted by conditions).  Thus sensory knowledge is in this great relativistic private predicament.  Inference has been claimed to get rid of privateness and relativity, in so far as it bases its inference on observed uniformities and invariable concomitances.  But these are again sense-dependent.  Undoubtedly we have greater freedom in inference.  But for getting at certainty of knowledge or validity we have no secure principles.  The abstract axioms of both induction and deduction do not apply to concrete situations.  In fact we find that contradictory positions are being taken in life as well.  In fact the pluralistic and individualistic conception sees that there are several points of view and each point of view may be right from that point of view but wrong from another.  The contradictions then between points of view cannot be resolved because they are co-existing contradictions which, however, do not seem to cancel one another.


            The dialectical logic has always realized that two contradictory propositions co-exist in polar opposition.  In reality too the contradictories co-exist in tension, and one is understood in terms of the other alone.  The importance of the category of negation, even like non-existence (abhava), has been fully realized but inferential logic arbitrarily selected to forego this truth by affirming the law of contradiction and the law of excluded middle.  The reason ultimately lies in practical utility or action which was considered to be a kind of puglism or struggle or pulling away from each other as in a tug-of-war.  Unfortunately debates also have taken the shape of controversy or opposition.  The advantages of opposition, even in politics, is not be minimized.  We see more clearly the faults of others than of ourselves.  There is thus a cancellation of faults and an attempt on both sides to rid of faults so that a real lasting agreement would be possible.  Unanimity would result not by compromise but by a deliberate attempt to consider the faults exposed by others, not to resent them at all.  This may be healthy battle in order to arrive at truth.  But truth must be the goal –a truth that is inferentially possible by taking into consideration all the apparently or really contradictory points of view.  This is the principle of other consideration, to see ourselves as other’s see us.  It is most helpful both in logical striving for whole truth or even a synthesis of truths.  A true coherent system is a different conception from that put forward by the idealists who afraid to declare that two contradictory propositions both of them particular (but mistaken for universal) can be true.  The real trouble is that where there are only particular propositions with varying degrees of generality there cannot be real contradiction or contrariety.  Technically stated in terms of the formal logic, 1 (One) and 0 (Zero) propositions can both be true.  And no one has a right to treat I and O propositions as universal proposition.  Jaina logic thus once for all dismisses the claim that in respect of conditional knowledge propositions can be absolute or universal.  Thus we can have propositions of varying degrees of contradiction – all of them true but partially or conditionally but nonetheless true within those limits.


            A new type of logic thus is proposed – this is the logic of Sevenfold prediction – Saptabhangi dependent upon or independent of sevenfold leads (nayas) points of view.


            Thus from one point of view a thing is (asti) and from another point of view that thing is not (naasti).  Combing both these points of view one could say that a thing is and is not (astinastica).  But a fourth point of view could discern that since the ‘is’ of the thing and the ‘is-not’ of the thing are not capable of being put in juxtaposition since there is change, the logical language of conjunction could not be adopted.  It is something that can only be said to be inexpressible (avaktavyam).  But since it is it is inexpressible; and since it is not and is inexpressible it is not and inexpressible and lastly it is and it is not and inexpressible.  There are said to be the seven ways of predicating being and non-being of any experience or thing.  Since all the propositions are in a sense particular and conditional the Jaina logicians propose the indefinite ‘Syat’ (May be) to be prelixed to all propositions thereby revealing not only the tentative nature of the truth of the propositions but also the particularity of these propositions.


            It is true that this logic is criticized on the basis of its not having definite alternatives logically sound and refutable.  It is even said to be a kind of logical dance or shirting of positions and in fact it may be said that this does not follow the usual pattern of nyaya.  It is the emphasis on Naya not Nyaya that Jaina logic makes.  A nyaya must lead to a naya towards reality but cannot condition reality and affirm that reality must conform to our standards rather than that we should shape our standards or instruments to know reality.  It is true some are satisfied with the logic of the finite mind or conditioned practical mind for different reasons.  Some (revelationists) wan to prove that logic (anumana) cannot give us reality and therefore to discredit it is good for apologetics of revelation.  Others do not see that need to arrive at a unitary or higher synthetic vision through mutual understanding and laborious piecemealing, for struggle is a solution – dialectical victory is light and gives us enormous sense of joy.


            A peaceful people with a philosophy of peace could hardly go to war, even of words, for they see clearly that there can be different facets to truth – and the range may be very vast.  As it is said that there must be Harmony and there must be sufficient truth behind all utterances and experiences from the gnat to the Brahma and all together are indeed capable of being comprehended in a single Vision ultimately.


            If discussion is a peaceful solution to conflicts and the goal is integral understanding on the plane of human experiences of truth, then the seven point logic seems to pave the way towards arriving at the synthesis of truth – not of course the Ultimate Vision.  Truth would then correspond with Vision, the idea would coalesce with Reality.  But that is a long way off so long as we swear by the absoluteness of the laws of thought.  The logic of the finite mind (conditioned reason) is verify committing suicide when it tries to set up absolute standards.  A natural route to transcendence of reason is to accept to give up or renounce the so-called laws of thought and seek a new methodology towards integral vision – a way by which we accept that contradictory propositions could both be true, and then go forward towards constructing a total idea of any object of knowledge so as to include the manifold nature of predicates in union.  In fact this really reveals that every fact can have multiplicity of qualities (predicates) but we claim that these dualities should not be contradictory.  This mental reservation should also be abandoned, for Reality is more than mind and unless the mind frees itself of these habits (material crutches), it cannot realise the Vision.


            It is not of course the intention of the Jainas to make Saptabhangi a substitute – though near substitute of vision (direct unmediated omniscient and omnipervasive Vision).  But in a world of such manifold predications, no one should claim absolute truth except the Arhat or the Free Soul.


            Jaina logic is a corrective to the theories of three or four kotis (kinds of predication) practised by the Buddhists and later by the Advaita Vedanta and other logicians.




            The attempt to understand the nature of a thing as it in itself or for itself of course very difficult.  Firstly when the most important fact about oneself is asked by the question ‘Who am I?’ one is perplexed and cannot answer by the tautology ‘I am I’ or what is uttered by that sacred formula ‘I am that I am’.  For it is not so simple after all to repeat the formula of identity.  If this were to be the case with oneself, it is thought however that we can be able to speak of another or an object more satisfactorily.  This too of course is not possible.  Every thing is related to something else either by location or time or sequence or logically by negation and so on.  All experiential terms are corrective terms – in Indian logical terminology they are either anuyogi or pratiyogi, positive correlates or negative or counter correlates.


            Thought much of our life is lived in terms of these yet the close and coherent experience of men does not follow this dualistic or dialectical mode of operations.  Useful in a sense, it is found to be not only incapable of helping integrative thinking but positively hindering integrative approach.  Accustomed by the habit of mind to think in terms of conflict and division or dividedness, one does not perceive that all these conflicts etc occur within a whole and have meaning in terms of the whole in which they seem to have meaning in terms of their opposites or counter correlates.  Indeed so significant was this discovery that it has been assumed that all division or even possible division is of the nature of opposition and demanding a dialectical process of mutual conflict and assimilation, socalled synthesis.  All are in the triadic movement of these, anti thesis and synthesis.


            This implicative logic is an implication of negations.  Truly there is also another type of logical that reveals implication by relational conjunction of affirmatives.  This Croce called the dialectic of distincts, in so far as there is the movement of thought (of event) towards its fullness and having the terms not in type of thesis-anti-thesis and synthesis but thesis-higher-thesis and integrative thesis or synthesis.  This is organic unification not of opposites but of correlatives.  Though the play of opposites has been the pattern for logical understanding and the fruitfulness of negation and counter – negation has been enormous, this play of negations or opposites even though leading to synthesis seems to delight in renewing the struggle by further counterthesis and further theses and synthesis.  This may be described as evolution logical, and may even be claimed to be true of the material evolution as well, though it is just possible that biological evolution would not accept this as the characteristic shape or nature of biological evolution as such except at certain levels.


            There seem to be two types of dialectic movement as Croce pointed out and not one and only one form of dialectic.  The Jaina theory of many points as expounded by their logicians themselves does not explain how knowledge grows and leads to the total knowledge from the consideration of aspects or leads (nayas).  Their explanation shows only that each and every thing can be known from several points of view (reduced to the minimum of seven, or maximum of seven according to others).  Even here the problem was reduced to the predicate of mere ‘being’ (asti).  Each one of the propositions was also reduced to the status of a particular one, since the introduction of may be includes only a part of the denotation (or connotation if connotatively viewed) of the subject and not the whole of the subject.  This reduces even being to cover only a part of the subject.  This is called the particular proposition.  What is true of a part need not be true of the whole or other parts.  Thus homogeneity of the object is not accepted even in respect of being.  Similarly in respect of the other predicates.


            Thus if a things is said to be (syad asti), it is in respect of that part that has been perceived.  Suppose it is interpreted that for another person it is a ‘not-is’, then we are bound to be worried about the meaning of the term ‘is’ whether it, is meant in the same sense as the first.  But it can be claimed that ‘is’ is not permanent but very transitory, so much so, before one assets that a thing is it would have become not is or passed away.  This is the claim of the doctrine of memomentariness of all created things or the nature of life itself (as per Buddhism, Heraclitus etc.).  Combining the two assertions it follows that one can say that a thing is and is not but this too is a probable (may be).  The very nature of linking up the two opposites for the sake of a comprehensiveness or synthesis of predictions, leads us to a difficulty about describing the nature of a reality that is of this illogical nature, that is to say a reality that cannot be put up in frames of logical language or any language technique.  But it is nevertheless an is, an is – not and is and isnot.  By a series of combinations of the first four the three others are said to be possible ways of predication.


            The question would be; are these further three predictions just theoretical possibilities or real predications from experience? That which is unspeakable (Avaktavya) is and therefore it is acceptable, say the Philosophers of the Absolute.  That it is not is the view of those who are absolute Nihilists for the whole question of being in the ordinary sense of the term is inapplicable to that condition.  But the third alternative yet holds that the predicates can be combined again at this higher level of the Absolute.  These appear to be just theoretical  assumptions, and incapable of justification.  For it is one thing to say that being is the predicate and there can be other predicates than being (existence) and a composite theory of predication will have to be taken into consideration.


            The necessity for accommodating several points of view is a logical necessity that is to say, it is a demand of thought to arrive at unified picture of a thing, of any thing. It is perhaps even true to say that it is a necessity of reality itself which has all the potentialities of plurality.  Thus the One Reality has been stated to be described variously – Ekam Sat, viprah bahudha vadanti.  The description or predication of this One is various ways seems to have been a necessity that is ontological.  The question is whether the ontological implies the logical and that means ultimately we shall be able to arrive through logical at the ontological, and the two are not contradictory at all. However, we have the important question as to which logic is ontologically useful and which is contrary to the ontological.  That today we have several logicians who deny ontology and are interested in developing a non-ontological logic shows that there is no one logic – indeed the very laws of thought once claimed to be sacrosanct are no longer occupying that place.  There are thus logics of the sciences (physics, chemistry and mechanics), the logic of the organic (biology) the logic of society or social dynamics, the evolutionary logic and so on.  The need for the logic of the infinite or the Supermind has been deeply felt by those who found that the kind of thought operating in the different spheres is different and moulded to the pattern of the object.  The relativity of thought is such that it cannot claim even that absoluteness of velocity of light postulated by physics.  The illusion that there is one and only one kind of thought operating at different levels or areas of human activity or in matter-motion, organic activity and organic evolution or spiritual activity and social dynamics has been the cause of the various difficulties raised about the logical, rational and the irrational and so on.  Just as the consciousness operating in the human system in different sectors of it such as the muscular, circulatory, nervous and glandular etc., is different and gets the name of unconscious, conscious and sub-conscious, even so we are forced to acknowledge that thought works with different set of axioms so to speak in different areas of existence.  These may not be contradictory though apparent contradictions may prevail, they cooperate in keeping up the unity of the system (organism).


            The interpretation of the integrative logic or multi predicational logic of the Jaina should be constructively shown.  At lest a reconstruction of that logic has better promise than any other logic.


            Assuming that there are several predicates for a thing the question is how they co-exist and can co-exist.  If the predicates are of different kinds they can co-exist.  Eg. Redness, softness, movement, having a name, location in space and time can all co-exist.  Similarly a man can be intelligent, fair, brave and jolly.  Thus the Ultimate Reality has been stated to be Truth, Consciousness-knowledge and Infinite (Satyam, jnanam, anantam Brahma).  These predicts co-exist without canceling others.  Possibly their opposites cannot co-exist.  The attempt to reduce all to one predicate either by making them synonymous or canceling them has been attempted but unsuccessfully, for we have yet to answer the question why then so many predicates? – are they meaningless? The only plausible theory would be to recognize that there are compatible and compossible predicates and non-compossible predicates.  Further what appear to be incompatible and uncompossible predicates may turn out to be compossible or vice versa.


            The multi-predicational theory then would have to show how the seven standpoints are compossible for a total view albeit external.  (Of course one could combine the internval view if the object studied also has a capacity for internal viewing as in the case of human beings).  But there is hardly much evidence of this.


            Jainas state seven standpoints or leads (nayas):


1.                  Naigama (nigama) – the theory of abstract conceptions apart from one another is a fallacy.


2.                  Samgraha naya is the point of view of the common aspects of objects.  To regard only the generic (or common) aspects without taking into consideration other aspects leads to a fallacy.  The particular and the generic are inseparable or to use the language of Nyaya; samvatya; inherent.


3.                  Vyavahara naya: the practical considerations may alone be taken – its use alone omitting other factors leads to the fallacy of practical interest blinding us to other facts.


4.                  Rijusutra naya – the standpoint of the present moment – the specious present omitting the antecedents or history leads to a kind of abstraction – that can lead to false knowledge.  But it should also not be forgotten that the present is as important as per the past or the future etc.


5.                  S’abada naya is said to be the literal point of view from that mere grammar or nature of the Sound or World.  There can be two types of error arising from the rudhi or common use of words as well as those arising from mere yoga (etymology).  Etymological use is most times ruled out by common usage (rudhi), but etymology rescues rudhi from becoming merely conventional.  But both must be taken note of and in technical works the etymological has more aptness whereas in common language and literature the rudhi has more aptness.  One can be easily led into mistakes when these are not understood.


6.                  The sambhairudhha naya is the technical etymological use of words and as already pointed out unless one has been told that the words used are all etymological and not conventional one is in difficulty.  But the usage in certain literature such as mantra-sastra or science restricts itself to them not only because such usage is meaningful and helpful in coining terms (as it has been done with reference to Greek and Latin languages in the West and Sanskrit in early times in India) but prevents those who have no such knowledge and training from using this knowledge.  In this sense occult languages have developed mostly etymological language requiring nirkta, etymological dictionaries.


            However, the approach in respect of language or propositions is technical and cannot be generalized even as the former naya or lead can be generalized.


            The theory that there is no etymological significance in rudhi and that rudhi has developed interpedently of etymology is questionable.  Rudhi develops out of emphasizing other aspects of an object than the original etymological (yoga) which are found to go together.  For eg. Crow is a word that has come out of an nomotopeac significance or from kr.  But it has later on signified either any black thing or since a crow always accompanies another vulture etc., it has begun signify a toady or flatterer for self-gain.  The word S’veta white, has begin to signify purity, this transference of other attributes is a basis of rudhi – divergence from etymology.  This of course assumes the co-existence of multiple predicates, which leads to the mistaken leads of rudhi – divergence from etymology.  This of course assumes the co-existence of multiple predicates, which leads to the mistaken leads in rudhi, much more than the etymological which tries to dientangle the confusions of the rudhi, philosophy always attempts to restore the yoga or etymology as can be seen in the writings of Alfred North Whitehead and in literature of Carlyle and others.  The use of philosophy is to maintain an active novelty of fundamental ideas illuminating the social system …. The purpose of philosophy is to rationalize …. Not to explaining it away but by introduction of novel verbal characteristics rationally coordinated Says A.N.  Whitehead speaking about mysticism.  It is no less imperative to realise that philosophy is a technical job not that of a mere poet of the common man or merely guided by rhythmatic spells.


7.                  The last naya or lead is Evambuta naya; it is the point of view of the actual function the object performs.


            There are some of the most important and there can be many more.  As it was pointed out, mathematically considered, Leibniz did postulate an infinity of standpoints or perspectives of reality and whilst ideally considering that of them can be clear and distinct also held the view that there are not merely infinite number of perspectives there are also gradations of clarity and distinctness, of consciousness too.  How all these are to be beheld as a whole as parts of a stupendous whole or how they are all reflected in one single part also is the mystery of Whole-part  relationship that is beyond all verbal expression (avaktavya).


            However, the philosopher must make the effort and has been doing it.  Jaina (and the Leibnizian) have been striving to make a reality of the axioms (postulates) of Sufficient Reason and Harmony of the Whole.  These two of course could be clear only to one who has not only comprehended the reality and rationality of multiple non-contradictory points of view (which taken separately would lead to grievous fallacies), but also who has been brought to the point of insight of unity of vision that illuminates the whole and the reality of the comprehension or transforms the very nature of the unity into a dynamic fact of Super-Being.  One transcends thought through Vision, but such a vision is significant to the thought and it is thought that gains in the process, not as in the case of lower vision, vision that gins through thought. This is the meaning behind the term sphota – illumination breaking up the doubts about terms and thoughts and their relationship – an original Vision that combines with Sound and illumines all the thoughts below and all the experiences in a single flash of self-evidence and existence.


            It is in Vision, samyagdars’ana, that one finds the significant Union – the eternal oneness in eternal manyness, and an eternal manyness realizing their inward reality and unity in the clarity of light or lighting of the One.  It not only gives the external unity of predicates but the internal (for itself) nature of it as illuminating from eternity their unity in itself – unconsciously, subconsciously and consciously now superconsciously.  A comprehensive logic is a necessity.  That it should exceed the logic of the finite mind wedded to the principles of abstract identity and abstract contradiction and opposition and excluded middle is very clear.  Indeed it was one of the aims of a transcendent logic even of the nihilistic variety to take the middle road or path or the golden mean.  Sri Aurobindo tries to explain how the logic of the supermind mediates between the logic of the Infinite and the logic of dichotomy and disjunction.


            In the Life Divine he shows how the logic of the Infinite is beyond our comprehension.  It is in so far as it is All that is that it can be understand in terms of what we know or experience.  It is because of the immanency of the infinite One that we are enabled to apprehend it at all.  This immanency is already presented to usin thform of oneness of the manyness – both need each other and support each other and are meaningful in this togetherness that is also inseparability.  The dual poise of the Ultimate are creative of delight in conflict but in union, and this without any abridgement or limitation of the powers of both.  It is clear also that nothing that is not inherent in the One-many can ever come into any kind of being.  Matter, life ad mind in their subtle forms are already inherent in this higher poise and level, and are exhibited in the evolution or descent.


            The expression of plurality takes place in these levels of matter, life and mind, and in each it is differentiated and divided in a way, though in truth there can hardly be any dividedness.  The multiplicity develops its own logical of relationships – of all kinds.  The absorption of each one of the many in their own individual separateness leads to the emergency of a new factor of ignorance (avidya) which is a product of the power of manyness in the One.  This conceals or veils the unity.  Thus the logical development of avidya, however, is not due to any original (anadi) beginningless factor external to the supreme one but something that originates in the (i) manifestation of the many (ii) in the extension of the One as space and time, (iii) in the absorption of the many in their individual manyness as such in extension of time and space, and (iv) in their inherent struggle to unite or reunite in and through each other to arrive at the one, which is the unconscious foundation of each one of the many – a reunion arrived at through conflict, struggle, sorrow and so on.


            To the question then whether ignorance has its locus in Brahman, in reply it can be said that it is not so much the ignorance but the manyness that is inherent in Brahman.  Ignorance is a product of the play of manyness in their manyness rather than in their oneness which undoubtedly is substanding all the many both in their manyness and in their play of manyness.  Ignorance is not unreal, it is the law of the play of manyness qua manyness even as knowledge is the play of manyness in Oneness qua oneness.


            There is in Sri Aurobindo’s conception the need for several kinds of logic.  But all of them are governed by the conception of a logic of Oneness that comprises the manyness and of the standpoints of the many, called the poises of the many.  A relativistic logic is not a final logic but an intermediary logic, which has to be transcended.  Since the finite is included in the Infinite, this could be both quantitative (space-time extension) and qualitative (intensive).


            There has been much speculation whether Sri Aurobindo’s conception of Reality is Advaita or Bhedabheda or Visistadvaita.  Both Bhedabheda and Visistadvaita are forms of advait but they include difference rather than reject it.  The difference is in the former a conditional production cuffing manifestation, and though real is not ultimate.  In so far as it is a condition it follows that this must have a locus – is it in Brahman or the One or is it extraneous to the One?  If the latter it is not advaita.  It is in a sense similar to the illusionistic Monism, which provides for a dualism of Brahman and Maya.  This is a dualism of Avidya and Brahman.  Therefore the Bhedabheda even when it recognizes the possibility of a reality within which both difference (bheda) and identity or oneness (abheda) can and do co-exist, and thus transcends the opposition (duality) between them, yet gives not merely a subordinate position to difference, but rejects it ultimately, for it is suspicious of the ultimacy of difference itself.  There is obviously a doubt whether the conjunction of an omnipotent Identity and impotent difference could be a permanent arrangement.  It seems to be axiomatic amongst earlier Vedantins that advaita or Onenes (Ekatva) is the fact about Reality not difference – and all difference can only be a subordinate truth or reality.  Bhedabheda in so far as it recognizes both the fact of identity and difference to be true to this axiom of reality and the axiom of experience.


            It must be said that Sri Ramjuna attempted a spiritual as well as organic analogy of the relationship between the One and the many. The concrete picture of an Organism reveals the oneness and the manyness in significant unity.  As it was shown the concrete oneness is unity not identity and it is the synthesis of many giving the appearance of oneness.  The parts of the whole are in significant unity and bear the name of one, the structure and shape being given one name.  Thus in Buddhist thought the aggregation of many parts (skandha) or the (avayavi) of Vaiseshika is a new thing – it is a unity of manifold parts of the most divergent nature.  We refer to the unity as one and the name is one for the whole of parts.  But this unity of the organism or the whole is precarious and subject to death and disease and disintegration or analysis.  Thus the analogy of the organism was refuted.  The organic conception, however, need not be entirely based on this perishable unity.  In fact in so far as the organic unity of the subtle bodies (linga sarira) was concerned all the schools agree that it is long lasting – because it persists through several births and deaths till the final attainment when it breaks up into its parts and the soul is released.  This leads to the view that the unity is not maintained only by the desire or ignorance but also by the soul (purusa).  If so, a more potent soul or purusa could sustain the unity even when the desire has exhausted itself or the ignorance has been liquidated by knowledge.  The idea of God or Isvara is such a power of Unity which maintains the organism of many parts and can do so either eternally or temporarily.  Thus Isvara as the Self or principle of oneness can maintain the unity of the organism – whether material or spiritual or a combination of both as it is in evolution.  Rightly it was argued by Sri Aurobindo this material organism could be maintained eternally by God or God-consciousness-Force and rendered immortal.  Sri Ramanuja held that this could be seen in respect of the immortal unchanging matter (nitya-vibhuti) when the souls might get the immortal body.  There seems to be nothing preventing the immortalizing of the body even of this matter through it must be held that if the law of this matter is change, the slow substitution of the other type of matter (unchanging matter) can be done even in this organism.  This may be a principle of transformation or transmission or alchemical change which is possible perhaps to God or God – consciousness.


            In any case the logic of this procedure is that the Ultimate Unity is possible through the Oneness – Consciousness which is maintaining the unity or integrality of the manyness which as it were form its body, so to speak.  A body is organically defined as a unity of parts maintained by a consciousness or soul.  The wholeness characterized, is maintained by that consciousness, and the whole has its own functions and properties which are not always present in each one of the parts or systems within the whole.  Thus manyness and the oneness are compatible in reality, and it is not a precarious unity – though that is the reflection arising from the experience of the organisms as we know them.  A perfectly adapted organism so to speak might not be in need of a periodic disintegration and integration for survival as it is in the case of imperfect organisms in evolution.  This is the truth behind the concepts of S’arlra and nitya-s’arlra in Ramnuja’s philosophy.  A body is defined thus spiritually so as to include the temporal body.  It is that which a conscient souls supports, controls, and enjoys for its own sake and which is dependent on that soul alone or exclusively.  This is true he holds both of the souls (which are themselves conscient) and the nature (which is acit inconscient).  They therefore form the body of God.  The finite many and the inconscient nature are inseparably indivisibly related to the Supreme God or the Sarva S’ariri (All-Soul).  This is the Oneness in manyness.  The description of this relationship is called S’arlra-s’ariri sambandha coupled with s’esa-s’esi-bhava (dependence relation on the independent).  The two poises of the Infinite Divine Being are mentioned as the subtle (causal) and the gross (effectual) and in both conditions, and indeed both conditions, are willed by the Divine Self.  Thus the cause contains the effect and the effect returns also to the cause – the analogy is perhaps the seed-tree-seed relationship, of cause effect cycle.  The suksma cid-acid-visista Brahman becomes the sthula suksma cid-acid-vis’ista Brahman and returns to the suksma-condition after the lila of the Divine is played out.  Thus Ramanuja’s philosophy has been described as Vis’istavadvaita – or fully expressed it is cid-acid-vis’istadvaita.  It is not to be translated as qualified monism – which would correct if it is a mechanical description of parts and whole; it is an organic description that has been stated and a dynamic functional relationship reveals the eternity of this continuing Oneness as Self.  The Aurobindonian concept of evolution as the dynamic threading up of the several planes and poises of the Infinite One in the infinte manyness has the nature of the organic.  Evolution is organic or it is not evolution at all.  The oneness is the stem of the organic whole and supports its manifold parts or organs, or amsas or rays of energy and light so on, both o the temporal nature and the eternal undiminishing nature.  Neither of the poises of the Divine is more absolute, neither dispensable.  Thus it includes all points of view and being and yet maintains the Oneness throughout by its transcendence over all dualities and extremes.


            So when attempts are made to analyse the Aurobindonian view as a kind of bhedabheda (either of the Bhaskara or Yadava Prakasa or any other) one finds that it does not fall into the pattern of mechanistic or conditional monism or identity and difference.  Nor does it conform to the Bosanquetean formula of Identity in difference.  That one feels the traces of such idealism in their works is clear but Aurobindonian idealism because of its emphasis on the Evolution and the Organic integration seems to be different from all earlier schools of Vedanta.  In his system evolution and involution are not just descending processes and ascending processes comparable to the pravrtti and nivrtti; they are integrative processes.


            The problem of logical naming of this kind of idealism is therefore not simple.  It is necessary to conceive of the whole or Reality as it is in itself as maintaining in unity both its Oneness and its manyness – a feature recurrent in every type of manifestation or projection – with the supreme possibility of alternating dominance of the Oneness or the manyness – with the other possibility of oneness engaging itself with the manyness in the One, or the engagement of the manyness with the one in their manyness and manyness with manyness without reference to the One.  All these give point to levels of being and each of them is real and true and capable of reproducing and implying sac-cid – ananda.  As Sri Aurobindo points out this very saccidananda (three supernals) is reflected in the temporal extension.  As sattva-rajas-tamas trinity in all their diversity in manyness.  All these plays are lila and therefore we have many kinds of lila or play which implies the unity in diversity and diversity in unity (prati-lila).


            Thus the inevitability of the reproductive participation of the Ultimate in each one of the many both as one and many and as all is the kind of necessity in the very nature of the reality.  That this kind of reproduction and participation leads to the logic of correspondence as also the mystic logic of all in each and each in all or expressed in another way as in the macrocosm so in the microcosm would also be clear.  Further this has no recourse to the logic of the finite and the divided but it can reveal that that logic is the law of exclusion of the unity through rejection of the same through not excluding it wholly in so far as it aims at a system of onesided truths.  It is within the realm of ignorance that it operates.  It considers itself to be sovereign within that realm.  But it is forced to firm limits to its realm of understanding.


            Thought as determined by ignorance expires in the Infinite, out when thought determines the ignorance it is not found that it has to expire at all.  It becomes ridher and profounder and modifies the operations of the ignorance and transforms it into an operation of the play of manyness with manyness without losing the sense of oneness that keeps them in mutual engagement.  This is what is meant by the operation of the knowledge by identity in each one of the many in relation to each other.  But actually it is the gnosis by modified identity which keeps the each both in their difference and in their identity in dynamic unity or alternative unity or disjunctive unity as also conjunctive diversity.  Since these operations do not fit into the net formulas of definition, division, classification etc. they are said to be irrational – even as some numbers are designated irrational numbers.  However, since they do exist their relationship and derivation have to be explained.


            Sri Aurobindo’s logic of the infinite both in the form of identity and in the form of modified identity helps to bridge the problems of oneness and manyness.  If Jaina logic had developed rightly it might have led to the formulation of a conjunctive comprehensive principle of Unity of its several standpoints.  But it has unfortunately both in the formulations of the saptabhangi as also saptanayas seriously restricted itself to the existential predicates and to leads that are about linguistic as possible.  If it had taken up the view that by putting the several points of view together one might suddenly be illumined by a Unity that thereupon keeps them as integral to one another, it would have shown the birth of that type of knowledge which we call insight, which is not the sum of the parts or sections but a revelation of truth.  However, committed as it was to the unmediated knowledge as the samyagdarsana – a direct vision by the jiva in its absolute immateriality – it could not accept that it is something that is arrived at by means of conjunction of standpoints or make it mediated by this process.this process.


            Nor could Sri Aurobindo’s supramental gnosis be just the comprehensive putting together of the several points of view – of sense-data and so on.  It is a direct knowledge by Grace which is the most real kind –it is knowledge of things in their eternal nature – it is a knowledge that is of the self itself in its triple poises of the one in all, all in one and as the one that has become all without separation into the phenomenal trinity of subject-object-knowledge.


            The integral view severs nothing, annuls nothing, it restores to unity the divided, both in organic as well as in the cosmic.  Perhaps it discovers that the organic itself is a inherent form o the Cosmic or transcosmic, and as such analogies of the organic are not ungemane to the transcosmic itself.  But the pan – organismic conception may be reflected in the Absolute, but it must be considered to be something very different also.  The logic of such an Absolute would have to explain all that are subordinate to it both in the spheres of consciousness and unconscious (acit), and in the interplay of both these also.


            It is the logic of revelation that can fully endorse the integral wholeness that explains the one-many problem in all its multiple poises, and Sri Aurobindo aims at presenting that picture to the finite consciousness which would help it to transcend itself.scend itself.scend itself.