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The Term "Most Perfect" 2/ Nihilist vs Realist

From: Venkat Nagarajan (
Date: Tue Nov 30 1999 - 16:40:19 PST

Dear Bhagavatas,
namO nArAyaNA.

Source: Sri. S.M.S. Chari*s Fundamentals of Vis*istAdvaita

In the introductory post, I gave an example (the concept of sets) to motivate the use of the term *most perfect* to describe Vis*istAdvaita.  In this post, I will continue with providing motivation for the use of the term *most perfect*.  

Just like the existence a set is a fundamental truth so is the existence of a subject-object relationship.  Both the Buddhist and the Advaitan claim that the subject-object relationship is unintelligible because it cannot be described in perfection.   However, the lion of logic, Sri. Vedanta Desika, does not deny its existence; VedantAcharya accepts the limitation and describes the concept in a most perfect manner. 


Our experience tells us knowledge of objects exists and that its function is to reveal. The relationship between object and knowledge is one of revealer and revealed.  This is a fundamental truth or an axiom of the realm of perception.  Denying the existence of such a relationship between knowledge and object is like denying the existence of sets.  Both concepts cannot be described in perfection.  In the case of a set the application of a general definition produces a contradiction.  In the case of  the subject-object relationship a general definition is not applicable, since the relationship is beyond the realm of the senses.  

This relationship is labelled as visaya (Object)-visayi (subject) bhAva sambandha and is described in a most *perfect manner* by its properties:
1.The relationship is external
2. direct (no intermediatory),
3. conjunctive (brings together.)
4. The subject is Jivatman but contact takes place between knowledge and the object through manas and the senses.  

Look at the posts on classification of reals if you want more details on how jiva and knowledge are related.

ramanuja dasan,
(Venkat Nagarajan)