Dakshinamurti Stotra, translated by Alladi Mahadeva Sastri, , at sacred-texts.com
To Him who, like unto a magician, or even like unto a mighty Yogin, displays by His own will this universe, undifferentiated in the beginning like the plant within the seed, but made afterwards picturesque in all its variety in combination with space and time created by Mâyâ, to Him who is incarnate in the Teacher, to Him in the Effulgent Form Facing the South, to Him (Siva) be this bow!
In the preceding chapter it has been shown that the whole external universe has really no existence independent of the Self, that it appears by Maya as though external to the Self. This chapter proceeds to establish the Vedic doctrine that Atman is the First Cause of the universe, by way of refuting the theories which maintain that the material cause of the universe is something else really existent, and independent of Atman.
1. The paramanus, the extremely small atoms, combined together, constitute the upâdâna or material cause of the universe. Hence it is that a pot manifests itself in constant association with clay, but not with Isvara.
It is the indivisible extremely subtle things called paramanus which, combining together in various ways, give rise to the universe comprising all created objects with their attributes and activities. We speak of a substance as the upadana or material cause of other things when it is found invariably associated with them, and upon whose existence the existence of those other things depends. Nothing in
our experience is thus invariably found associated with Atman, the Self, or Isvara. On the other hand, every created object is found invariably associated with something other than Atman, with something or other which is insentient. A pot, for instance, is invariably associated with clay. Hence the conclusion that the insentient atoms, not the sentient Isvara nor His Maya, are the material cause of the universe.
2. It is the qualities, such as colour, taste, etc., inherent in the atoms themselves, which produce qualities of a kindred sort in the effect separately.
Thus, the atoms and their qualities give rise to all objects in creation as well as their qualities, so that Isvara is not the material cause either of the substances or of their qualities.
3. That with which the effect is intimately associated is the samavâyi-kârana, the inseparable or material cause, as.
opposed to the accessories such as the potter's wheel, which belong to a category different from the samavâyi-kârana.
4. That is said to be the asamavayi-karana, the accidental or separable cause, which, while quite necessary to produce the effect, resides in the samavâyi, or in the substratum of the samavâyi.
5. An efficient (nimitta) cause of all effects is Isvara, like the potter.
The Vaiseshika says that there are three kinds of causes for every positive effect, known respectively as the samavayi or upadana-karana, the material cause; the asamavayi-karana, the accidental cause; the nimitta-karana, the efficient or intelligent cause. Thread is the material cause of a cloth, because the latter is in constant relation with the other. According to the definition of the asamavayi-karana given in the verse 4, the combining of threads with one another constitutes the asamavayi-karana of the cloth, because the
act of combining resides in the threads which form the samavayi-karana of the cloth. Again, according to the definition, the colour of the thread is the asamavayi-karana of the colour of the cloth, because the former which gives rise to the latter resides in the thread which forms the substratum (the samavayin) of the cloth, and the cloth again is the substance wherein the colour of the cloth inheres in constant relation and is therefore called the samavayi of that colour. The remaining factors in the causal aggregate comprise (1) what is called the nimitta-karana, the efficient cause like the weaver, and (2) the sahakari or auxiliary cause such as the instruments used by him in producing the cloth out of the thread. Isvara is said to be a mere efficient cause in all effects. And as the efficient cause He is a necessary factor in the creation of the universe; for, we see that without an impulse from a sentient being no effect is ever produced out of a material. Without a potter, for instance, no pot is ever produced out of clay. Isvara being thus only one of the factors in the creation of the universe, to hold that the sole cause of the universe is the sentient Brahman is opposed to all our experience.
5–6. Whencesoever an effect is born, there it abides; a pot abides in clay, a cloth in thread, a finger-ring in gold. Thus say the Vaiseshikas as well as the Naiyâyikas.
7–8. Rajas, Sattva and Tamas,—these are the three qualities of Pradhâna. Rajas is impassioned and mobile; Sattva, pure and luminous; Tamas, dark and concealing: they are the causes of creation, preservation and destruction.
Pradhana, otherwise called Prakriti, is said to be composed of three distinct elements called Gunas perceived as intimately associated, or even identical, with one's own self by those who cannot discriminate between matter and spirit. Rajas, literally the colouring element, is characterised by passion and motion and forms the support by which the other two are held in their place. Sattva, lit. goodness, is very subtle acid light, and is the
element by which we become conscious of the external world. Tamas, lit. darkness, is heavy, dull and impure, concealing the reality from our vision. The respective functions of these three distinct constituents of Pradhana manifest themselves in the creation, preservation and destruction of the universe. How they cause these will be explained later on. This school of Sankhya holds that no Intelligent Being is necessary even as the efficient cause of the universe.
Now follows the refutation of these.
The second stanza of the Hymn is intended to refute the theories as to the cause of the universe advanced by the Vaiseshikas, Naiyayikas, Sankhyas, Svabhava-vadins, Nihilists (Sunyavadins), Saivas and Pauranikas.
The meaning of the second stanza may be explained as follows:
9. In the series of effects from the sprout. of the plant up to its fruit, existence is admitted. Whence do, then, come those atoms and conjoin into fig-seeds?
That is to say, the doctrine that the atoms are the cause of the universe is contradicted by
experience. For, the upadana or material cause of the universe is defined to be that which is perceived in association with all objects of creation. It being only existence, not atoms, that we cognize in all objects of creation, the upadana of the universe must be Brahman spoken of as the Sat or existent, not the atoms or anything else. How, for instance, can atoms be said to be the upadana of the fig-seed, the final effect? Though atoms be the upadana of the dvyanukas, molecules of two atoms, yet they are not perceived to be as such in all products. Three dvyanukas are said to form a tryanuka, the next compound; a hypothesis not warranted by experience. If such were the case, we would perceive along with the pot the lump of clay out of which it was produced, and the pot along with pot-sherds. This cannot be, inasmuch as no after-state is perceived without the previous state entirely vanishing, and that what has vanished out of sight cannot be said to be the upadana. If this last were possible, then atoms themselves might be the upadana of the final products, which is contrary. to the hypothesis of the Vaiseshikas. Atoms are, moreover, assumed to be supersensuous; so that the effects which are made of supersensuous atoms must also be supersensuous. Wherefore, Brahman alone, the Existence, as present in all objects of creation, is the upadana of the universe.
The upadana-karana is sometimes defined—as the word upadana literally means,—to be the substance which one must primarily lay hold of in producing an effect. On the strength of this definition, the Vaiseshika might argue, in defence of his theory, that it is the seed, not Brahman's existence, which one must primarily lay hold of in order to produce the tree, and that therefore Brahman cannot be the material cause of all effects. In reply, the Brahmavadin says that the objection applies to both alike. The Vaiseshika must admit that he who wishes to produce a tree resorts primarily not to atoms, but to the seed. If he should try to explain this difficulty by saying that the seed which is resorted to is originally built out of atoms, the Brahmavadin defends his theory by saying that the seed itself is a vivarta or an illusory aspect of Brahman. The Brahmavadin's position is further strengthened by the fact that in the seed existence is cognised, but not the atoms.
10. It is admitted by all that the effect is accompanied with the cause (upâdana). Hence it is that existence and light are present in every object.
Every object of creation appears in the light of
consciousness as something existent. Wherefore the self-luminous Existence is the material cause.
11. When the flower becomes the fruit, when milk becomes curd, properties—such as form, taste and the like—of a distinct class from those of the cause are cognised.
Whereas, according to the Vaiseshika theory, the qualities of the effect should be of the same kind as those of the cause, the former being caused by the latter. Thus though one effect follows another, the preceding effect cannot be said to be the material cause of the succeeding one as the Vaiseshika maintains.
It may be asked, how can the mere self-luminous Existence which is formless give rise to the universe of forms? We reply: It is said to be the Cause merely because It underlies all manifested illusory forms, like the rope which is the basis of the illusory form of the serpent, etc. Accordingly the Vartikakara says:
12. Cause and effect, part and whole, genus and individual, substance and attribute, action and agent, and others like these are imaginary forms of the One Light.
It being impossible—either according to the Arambhavada, the Vaiseshika theory of creation, or according to the Parinamavada, the Sankhya theory of transformation,—to explain that one thing can really cause another, and all other theories being altogether unfounded, we have to conclude that the universe is a mere display of Maya on the background of self-conscious Brahman.
13. Neither for the atoms nor for the Pradhana is sentiency claimed in creating the Universe. Intelligence and activity are found to inhere in a sentient being.
The Vaiseshikas and Sankhyas do not claim sentiency for the atoms and the Pradhana, which they respectively hold to be the cause of the universe. Sruti (Vide Chhandogya-upanishad, 6–2)
declares that creation proceeds from a self-conscious Being, Himself becoming the universe in its manifold aspects. Consciousness and activity are never found in insentient matter unassociated with a self-conscious entity. From this it necessarily follows that creation proceeds from a self-conscious Principle who can think and act. Thus, according to the Sruti, the universe cannot be said to actually proceed from the insentient atoms or the insentient Pradhana as such, or even from either of these acted on by the will of a self-conscious Being, of an extra-cosmic God, existing quite apart from the matter out of which the universe is built. On the other hand, the Sruti teaches that the universe proceeds from Isvara by an act of will, that He is both the efficient and the material cause of the universe. Though He is immutable in Himself, not subject to any change, not affected by anything whatsoever, still it may be supposed that He thinks and acts, is conscious of an external world and acts upon it, when viewed in association with His Maya-Sakti, the power of illusion containing within it the potentialities of the universe as made up of causes and effects.
14. By His Kriya-Sakti or energy of activity assuming the form of Time, milk
is transformed into curd. By His Jnana-Sakti or energy of intelligence, the universe comes into being as made up of the perceiver and the objects of perception.
The Sankhya holds that an effect comes into being independently of a sentient being, and adduces, in evidence of his theory, the fact of milk transforming itself into curd without the intervention of a sentient being. As against this, the Vedantin holds that it is the Isvara dwelling, as the Sruti (Bri-Up. 5–7-15) declares, in all objects of creation controlling and guiding them from within, who, by His Kriya-Sakti, assuming the form of Time acts upon milk so as to transform it into curd. Milk by itself cannot become curd. If it could, then it would ever be changing into curd. Again, there is a state of Maya in which it is associated with a semblance of Brahman's consciousness and forms the consciousness of Isvara, the author of the universe, who, at the beginning of creation, is said to have had before his view all that was to be created, and from whom proceeds our consciousness of the universe. This consciousness of Isvara is what is called Jnana-Sakti, the energy of intelligence. Itself thus assuming the form of intelligence, Maya converts its basis, Brahman associated with Maya, into a conscious entity, while, it also presents itself to His view as
the universe to be created, as the object of perception. Thus by Jnana-Sakti of Isvara the universe comes into being.
15. Consciousness is of two kinds: Nirvikalpaka or the undifferentiated consciousness illumines the Thing itself, while Savikalpa or the differentiated consciousness is manifold as illumining the designations, etc.
The Jnana-Sakti takes two forms. First, there is the consciousness which at the beginning of creation expressed itself in the form "may I become many," and relates to the external universe as a whole in general. It is known as nirvikalpaka or the undifferentiated consciousness. Again, the same consciousness, when relating to the objects of external universe in their respective special characteristics, such as the several elements of matter and material objects, becomes what is called savikalpa or differentiated consciousness.
Thus though consciousness is one and homogeneous in itself, it appears to be different in the different forms illumined by it. As, for instance:
16. Imagination, doubt, confusion, memory, consciousness of similarity, determination, guess, and non-apprehension; and so also other states of consciousness.
These other states of consciousness comprise those which are generally regarded as pramas,—forms of right knowledge as relating to the real state of things. They are differently enumerated in the different systems of philosophy, as follows:
17. The Chârvakas hold to pratyaksha (sensuous perception) alone, whereas Kanâda and Sugata recognise that as well as anumâna (inference). Sânkhyas recognise the two as well as Sabda (verbal statement);
18. And so do some of the Naiyâyikas so called, while other (Naiyâyikas) add upamana (comparison). Prabhâkara
mentions these four along with arthâpatti (presumption).
19. The Vedântins and the followers of Bhatta recognise a sixth one named Abhâva; while the Paurânikas mention these with the addition of Sambhava (consistency) and Aitihya (tradition).
Charvakas: otherwise known as the Lokayatas, those who hold that nothing is real except what is revealed by the senses. Kanada: the founder of the Vaiseshika system of philosophy. Sugata: Buddha, who preached that Atman was nothing independent of the states of consciousness which change from moment to moment. Sankhyas: the followers of Kapila's and Patanjali's systems of philosophy. The followers of Gautama's system of Nyaya recognise upamana as an independent source of right knowledge. Prabhakara and Bhatta were leaders of two different schools of Jaimini's system of Karma-Mimamsa; Vedantins: those who follow the lead of Badarayana, the founder of the system called Sariraka-mimamsa, which treats of the nature of Brahman. Pauranikas: those who base their system of philosophy on the teaching of the Puranas.
Pratyaksha: sensuous perception; right knowledge obtained by sense-organs coming in contact with external objects, like our knowledge of colour, etc., obtained through the eye, etc.
Anumana: right knowledge obtained by a process of inference. First, by observation we find that wherever there is smoke there is fire. Then, when in a certain place we see smoke, we infer that fire exists in that place. The knowledge of the existence of fire has here been obtained by a process of inference.
Sabda: right knowledge obtained through a verbal statement proceeding from a trustworthy source.
Upamana: right knowledge of similarity obtained by a process of comparison. To explain: A man learns for the first time from a forester that a gayal (a wild animal) is like a cow. Afterwards, on seeing an animal like a cow in a forest, the perception of similarity reminds him of the forester' directions, and he concludes that it is a gayal.
Arthapatti: right knowledge in the form of presumption: surmising a thing to account for something else known. Thus, in the case of a fat man who does not eat by day, his fatness cannot be explained except through the surmisal of his eating at night. By presumption, we come to know that he eats at night.
Abhava: an immediate consciousness of the non-existence of something by the non-perception
thereof where, if it existed, it ought to have been perceived. When, for instance, in a lighted room we do not perceive a jar, we become immediately conscious that the jar does not exist there.
Sambhava: the right knowledge we have as to the existence of a part when we know that the whole of which it is the part exists. If we know that a man has one hundred rupees, it is a right knowledge to know that he has ten rupees.
Aitihya: right knowledge obtained by tradition, which is transmitted from generation to generation, and of which the source is unknown; such is the knowledge concerning a Yaksha (an invisible being) said to occupy a tree.
These terms, pratyaksha, etc., are applied to prama or the right knowledge thus obtained, as well as to pramana, the karana or the means by which such a knowledge is obtained. While the Charvakas dogmatically discard as unreliable all sources of information other than sensuous perception, others reduce some of the eight sources of knowledge mentioned above, to one or another of those which they recognize as independent sources of knowledge.
20. The followers of Kanâda mention six padârthas or categories of existence; viz.:
I. Dravya, substance. II. Guna, quality. III. Karma, motion or activity. IV. Samanya, genus. V. Visesha, difference. VI. Samavaya, intimate relation or co-inherence.
21–23. I. Substances are nine:
Bhutas or elements (1. earth, 2. water, 3. light, 4. air and 5. ether.) 6. Dis, space. 7. Kala, time. 8. Atman, soul. 9. Manas, mind.
II. Qualities are twenty-four:
1. Sabda, sound. 2. Sparsa, tangibility. 3. Rupa, colour. 4. Rasa, taste. 5. Gandha, odour. 6. Parimana, dimension. 7. Sankhya, number. 8. Samyoga, conjunction. 9. Vibhaga, disjunction. 10. Prithaktva, mutual separateness. 11. Gurutva, weight. 12. Dravatva, fluidity. 13. Paratva, priority. 14. Aparatva, posteriority. 15. Sneha,
viscidity. 16. Samskara, tendency. 17. Dhi, understanding. 18. Dvesha, aversion. 19. Sukha, pleasure. 20. Duhkha, pain. 21. Ichchha, desire. 22. Dharma, merit. 23. Adharma, demerit. 24. Prayatna, effort.
24–25. Tendency is of three kinds:—(1) Vega or speed, like that which causes the flight of an arrow, etc. (2) Bhavana, that latent impression, caused by experience, which subsequently helps to call forth a memory of the same under favourable circumstances. (3) Sthitasthapakata or elasticity, that which causes return to the former state. When the leaf of the birch or the branch of a tree is first dragged and then let go, it will revert to its former state.
26. III. Motion or action is of five sorts as the wise say: 1. Utkshepa, throwing upwards. 2. Avakshepa, throwing downwards. 3, Gamana, going. 4. Prasarana, expansion. 5. Akunchana, contraction.
27–28. IV. Genus is said to be of two kinds;—I. Para or the higher, namely, satta, existence. 2. Apara or lower, such as the genus of substance, of quality, and so on.
28. V. Viseshas or ultimate differences are those which cause the knowledge that one thing is different from another; and they are infinite in number.
They are said to reside in the eternal substances, such as manas, soul, time, space, ether; the paramanus of earth, water, light and air.
29. VI. Samavaya is eternal relation, such as that between a pot and its colour.
The pairs which are thus intimately related are, the whole and its parts, substance and its qualities, action and its agent, genus and the individual, viseshas and the eternal substances.
Time, ether, space and soul are eternal and all-pervading.
30 The four kinds of paramanus are infinitesimally small and eternal.
Thus have been enumerated the six categories according to the Vaiseshika Doctrine.
Now the Vartikakara proceeds to give the classification of principles according to Theistic Sankhya:
31. Mâyâ (illusion) is designated as Pradhâna (the primary germ), Avyakta (the unmanifested), Avidyâ (ignorance),
[paragraph continues] Ajnâna (nescience), Akshara (indestructible), Avyâkrita (undifferentiated), Prakriti (the material cause), Tamas (darkness).
These are the terms applied to Mulaprakriti, the root of matter, the ultimate material cause of the universe, in Sruti, Smriti and Puranas.
32. From Mâyâ, when conjoined with Brahman's consciousness reflected in it, there come into being Mahat, Time and Purusha; from the principle of Mahat comes forth Ahankâra.
When Maya becomes united with the consciousness of Isvara controlling it, there come into being the three principles mentioned above: Kala, that which causes disturbance in the balanced condition of the gunas of Prakriti. It is only Brahman's consciousness in a particular state as induced by conjunction with Prakriti. Under the influence of Kala, Prakriti evolves into Mahat (intellect); and with this first evolution of Prakriti as their background, the Jivas or Purushas start into being, each Purusha being independent and eternal. They are to ensoul all the created forms. The whole samsara is in fact intended for their evolution and
benefit. They are conscious of, and become affected by, the various changes that take place in nature. From Mahat, Ahankara or Egoism is evolved. This Ahankara is either tamasic, or rajasic or sattvic.
33–34. From the tâmasic Ahankâra proceed the âkâsa, air, fire, water and earth as also sound touch, colour, taste and smell, in orderly succession, forming the objects of the senses and the specific qualities of the bhûtas (elements). Their deities are Sadasiva, Isa, Rudra, Vishnu, the Four-faced (Brahmâ).
Sound, etc., respectively form the characteristic nature of the five elements such as akasa, all infused with Ahankara. Deities: Devas or the Intelligences working in the five subtle elements, controlling them from within, guiding their evolution according to certain laws.
35–36. From the sâttvic Ahankâra proceed the antah-karana, (the inner organ) and the organs of sensation.
The antah-karana, (the inner organ of sensation is fourfold:
Manas, Buddhi, Ahankara and Chitta. Doubt, determination, pride, recollection,—these are their objects. Chandra, Prajapati, Rudra, Kshetrajana,—these are the Devatas.
37. Ear, skin, eye, palate, and nose are known as jnânendriyas, organs of sensation. Dis, Vâta, Sûrya, Varuna, Asvins,—these are said to be their Devatas.
38. From the râjasic Ahankâra come forth the Karmendriyas or organs of action and the vital airs. The Karmendriyas are tongue, hands, feet, anus, and the organ of generation.
39. Their functions are speaking, taking, going, leaving, and enjoying. Their Devatas are Vahni, Indra, Upendra, Mrityu, and Prajapati.
40. The (vital) airs are prâna, apâna, vyâna, udâna, and samâna.
The respective seats of these vital energies are the heart, the anus, the whole body, the throat, and the navel.
40–41. The doctors of Sânkhya-Sâstra enumerate twenty-four tattvas (principles) comprising the five bhûtas (elements of matter), the five vital airs, and the fourteen indriyas (organs of sensation and action).
The Theistic Sankhyas enumerate these only as the twenty-four principles said to be taught in the
[paragraph continues] Sankhya system. According to them, all the principles from Brahman and Maya up to the Tanmatras (the primary essential elements of matter) being present in all these twenty-four principles as their causes, they are not to be separately counted.
The Atheistic School of Sankhya enumerates the twenty-four principles in the following order of evolution: 1. Mulaprakriti; 2. Mahat; 3. Ahankara; 4–8, the five Tanmatras (evolved out of Tamasic Ahankara); 9–13, the five Mahabhutas or gross elements of matter (evolved out of the five Tanmatras); 14–18, the five organs of activity (evolved out of Rajasic Ahankara); 19–24, the antah-karana and the five external organs of sensation (evolved out of the Sattvic Ahankara). The first of these is the cause of all, not the effect of anything else. The principles enumerated from 2 to 8 are each the effect of what precedes it and the cause of what follows it. Those enumerated from 9 to 24 are mere effects, and they. do not give rise to any distinct principles in their turn. Prangs or vital energies are not regarded as distinct principles in themselves, being looked upon as functions of the sense-organs taken in their totality. Purushas are infinite in number and are neither causes nor effects of anything else. What is called Time has
no existence independent of the things spoken of as having existed in the past, or as existing in the present, or as going to exist in the future.
41–42. To these adding Mahat, Time, Pradhâna, Mâyâ, Avidyâ and Purusha, the Paurânikas enumerate thirty principles.
Pradhana is the Mula-prakriti whose first modification is Mahat. Maya and Avidya are thus distinguished: Maya does not delude the Being in whom it abides, and is entirely under His control, while the reverse is the case with Avidya which abides in Jiva. Kala is simply the activity of Isvara when in conjunction with Avyakta. Purusha is an amsa or mere ray of Paramatman.
42–43. Adding to these Bindu and Nâda, Sakti and Siva, Sânta and Atîta, the doctors of Saivâgama enumerate thirty-six principles.
Bindu: the principle called Sadasiva, the Entity governing the whole existence, and devoid of attributes. Nada: another form of the same Being manifested as Pranava, the illuminator of all things. Sakti: a power distinct from Maya and Avidya, and by which Isvara governs all. Siva: He in whom that power inheres, and who voluntarily assumes a body for the benefit of devotees. Santa (the Tranquil) and Atita (the Transcendent) are only two different aspects of Siva, as the Sruti says: ''This fire is verily Rudra Himself: of Him there are two bodies, one fierce, the other gentle." (Tattiriya Samhita, 5–7–3).
The different principles enumerated above are none of them absolutely real in themselves. According to the Sruti they are only manifestations of the one Parabrahman caused by Maya. So the Vartikakara says:
43–44. All the principles thus assumed existed in the Atman before, as the plant in the seed. By Mâyâ, acting in the form of will, intelligence and activity, have they been displayed.
44–45. Because every event is the result of will, intelligence and activity, therefore it is certain that all creatures are so many Isvaras.
The universe proceeds from will, intelligence and activity which cannot inhere in any being other than Isvara endued with Maya. The universe is maintained, as we see, by the will, intelligence and activity inherent in the sentient existence, in the Jivas. This sentient existence is therefore none other than Isvara, there being no evidence whatever by which to establish a distinction in consciousness pure and simple except what is caused by external conditions with which it is associated. All volition, thought and activity being the results of Maya, it is but right to maintain that the whole universe which they bring into existence is made up of nothing but Maya.
45–47. From the seed is born the tree; again from that tree is another seed born, and so on in succession. With a view to prevent such a supposition, the illustration of a Yogin has been adduced. The ancients such as Visvâmitra, perfect in Samâdhi, without any material instrument, without any personal end in view, by their mere will brought about creation complete with all enjoyments.
48. Almighty as possessed of infinite power, independent as having nothing to resort to outside Himself, by His mere will He creates, preserves and destroys all.
The illustration by seed and plant may lead one to the conclusion that there are many Isvaras and many universes coming one after another, as cause and effect in turn. This is opposed to the teaching of the Sruti which says that Isvara is never born and never dies. The illustration of Yogin is intended to avoid the opposite conclusion, by showing that Isvara is one and is the sole creator of the universe.
Now the question arises as to how the immutable Isvara can be said to create, preserve, and destroy the universe. It is answered as follows:
49. The Isvara does not create by way of operating on materials (external to Himself); self-conscious as He is, neither is He the knower by way of operating on pramânas or organs of perception.
Isvara undergoes no change of state in Himself when He creates, preserves or destroys the universe. If He were to perform these acts by actively operating on the material cause with necessary instruments and so on, then He would be subject to change of state, like a potter producing a pot. On the other hand, like a king or a magnet, by mere presence He induces activity in His environment, without actively engaging in any act.
50–51. His consciousness and agency are quite absolute because of His independence. In the very variety of His will consists His absolute freedom. Who can define the self-reliant will of Isvara by which He is free to act, or not to act, or to act otherwise?
He is conscious and active independently of all else, without undergoing any change in Himself. So, too, is His will characterized by thorough independence and absence of all obstruction.
52. The Sruti also has declared Isvara's creation by will, in the words, "He desired," and "From Him, the Atman, was âkâsa born."
Thus by way of comparing Isvara to the magician and to the Yogin, has been expounded the Vedantic doctrine that Isvara is both the material and the efficient cause, as manifesting by force of His Maya the universe made up of names and forms which cannot be spoken of as either real or unreal. As this doctrine is taught in one harmonious voice by all the Upanishads, it should not
be set aside on the strength of evidence furnished from other sources of knowledge.
53. If the Supreme Lord were merely the efficient cause of this universe, like a potter He would be subject to change and liable to death.
It cannot be that, like the potter operating with external instruments upon an external material cause, Isvara is merely the efficient cause of the universe; for none can operate upon things external to himself without himself undergoing change. Like other operators He should have been endowed with a body, which would make Him liable to decay. Accordingly the conception that Isvara is the mere efficient cause of the universe is opposed to the express teaching of the Vedanta that He is eternal and immutable.
To avoid the absurdity that has been shown to follow from the doctrine that Isvara is the mere efficient cause, the Vaiseshika may say that Isvara, as belonging to the category of Atman, has the nine qualities (the last nine enumerated in vartika 23) including ichchha (desire or will) inherent in
[paragraph continues] His nature, i.e., independent of a body. But this -would lead to another absurdity, as shown below:
54. If the nine qualities including intellect were eternal coinhering attributes of Isvara, then, endowed as He is with eternal will, He should constantly be engaged in the creation of the universe.
55. In the absence of all cessation of activity, samsâra would never cease. The teaching as to moksha would be vain, and the Revelation would be of no purpose.
56. Wherefore the Isvara's creation of the universe is all a display of Mâyâ, and all worldly experience including Revelation as to bondage and liberation is (the effect) of Mâyâ.
57. Thus ends the second chapter in brief in the work called Mânasollâsa which expounds the meaning of the Hymn to the Blessed Dakshinâmûrti.