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Accueil > Oriente > Utpaladeva : Section I. Knowledge — Chapter 2


Utpaladeva : Section I. Knowledge — Chapter 2

Chapter II

mardi 24 avril 2018

Raffaele Torella

1-2. [Objection] There is one type of cognition in which the particular reality (svalakșana) appears and another type of cognition, [89] I 2.1-2 called mental? elaboration (vikalpa), inseparably connected with discourse (sābhilāpam), which appears in manifold forms. For neither of the two is there any necessity to posit any stable perceiving subject, since he does not appear in them. Also the notion of ‘I’ (ahampratītih) has in reality as referent the body etc...

  •  One type of cognition, consisting in the direct perception of the clearly manifested (sphuțāvabhāsa) particular reality, is called ‘exempt from mental elaborations’ (nirvikalpakam) ; the other type of cognition, on the other hand, which, permeated by the word, appears in the various forms of memory, doubt, fantasy etc., is called ‘representation, mental elaboration’ (vikalpa). Neither the one nor the other are admissible as depending on another entity distinct from knowledge? itself in the form of consciousness, since this other entity is not perceived (tasyānupalabdheh). Who, then, is this permanent Self ? Even on the basis of the notion of ‘I’, which is indissolubly connected with discourse, the existence? of a cognizer, who transcends what are simply cognizable realities, namely the body and so on, cannot be ascertained. — 1-2 —

    [90] 3. [Reply] How could we explain memory, which conforms to direct I 2.3 perception when the latter is no longer present, if there were not a permanent self, who is the subject of the perception ?

  •  Since the former direct perception has disappeared at the moment of the memory, the memory, whose essential quality is precisely its dependence on that former perception of the object?, could not arise, unless one admits the persistence of the awareness of this perception also at the moment of the memory. And this lasting awareness at different times is precisely the self, the perceiving subject. — 3 —

    4. [Objection] Even if we do acknowledge the existence of a self, memory is still not explained, given that the perception no longer exists and that only through it [the perception] does memory have access to the objects formerly perceived. [Reply]. But memory acts on those very things that were the object of the perception...

  •  Once the direct perception (manifestation) of the object has ceased, the object no longer exists even for memory, since it is assumed precisely through direct perception. Therefore, even if one acknowledges a self consisting in a unitary consciousness, memory finds itself without an object and thus all worldly activity? collapses. If, on the other hand, you claim that memory has as its object that of a perception that no longer exists... — 4 —

    5. ...insofar as the occurrence of memory is due to the latent impressions left by direct perception. [Objection] If that is how things stand, what need is there for this useless burden of a permanent self ?

    [91] I 2.5 From direct perception there derives a latent impression (samskārah) ; the memory arising from this conforms to that former perception and makes that perception — in which the object is immersed — manifest. If things are explained in these terms, why is it necessary to assume a useless permanent subject, since even the supporter of the existence of the self acknowledges the existence of the latent impression and this alone is enough to account for memory ? — 5 —

    6. If the qualities are separate [extrinsic to the self], then, since the nature? of the self remains unaltered, the latent impressions are sufficient to explain the phenomenon of memory. The subject of memory is therefore only a mental construct (kalpitah), as was the subject of the perception.

  •  The self, even if it is invoked as a substratum of qualities that are distinct from it, such as pleasure, pain, knowledge etc. serves no useful purpose. Indeed, it does not perform any function in the phenomenon of memory, since it does not undergo any modification, seeing that it does not combine with the above-mentioned qualities, which are conceived as separate. Therefore, as in the case of the subject of perception, to say that the self is the subject of memory is purely a mental construct. — 6 —

    [92] 7. If cognition were conscious (citsvarūpam) then it ought to be permanent I 2.7 like the self ; if on the contrary, it were not sentient, how could it illuminate objects ?

  •  If cognition were by nature conscious, then, unable to be associated with time and place — which are qualities pertaining to objects it would become permanent etc., like the self. If, on the other hand, it were not sentient, how could it illuminate the object ? — 7 —

    8. [Reply]. Just as the intellect assumes the form of the object, so it assumes the sentience (caitanyam) of the self. [Objection]. In that case it is not insentient, for if it were so, it could not illuminate the object.

    [93] I 2.8 The intellect (buddhih) is cognition. Though it is itself insentient, just as it assumes the reflection of the form of the object, so, in the same way, it also assumes the reflection of the sentience pertaining to the self. Thus [in assuming them both], it can illuminate the object. However, [it is replied] it follows that it must be sentient by nature.

    Therefore cognition, though it exists, is not related to anything else [i.e. to a subject], because this has been recognized as untenable. Action?, on the other hand, neither exists in itself, nor as related to anything else. — 8 —

    9. Also action fas a separate reality is logically inadmissible as it] consists in the coming into being of bodies etc. in different places etc. (tattaddeśādijātatā) and nothing more, since nothing more is perceived ; nor is it tenable that it — being one and also characterized by succession — may be related to a unitary reality.

  •  Action, too, conceived as one and constitued by various preceding and succeeding parts, consisting in the activity of factors (kāraka), is not tenable, as it is not possible to attribute unity to something characterized by succession, i.e. that exists in a multiplicity of moments. Nor is it admissible that it has a substratum that is both characterized by [94] temporal succession and is unitary in nature. Action is only ‘to go’ to I 2.9 change and so on, which is but the assumption on the part of bodies etc. of new states of existence at various and diverse times and places, since nothing else distinct from this is perceived. — 9 —

    10. The various things come into being in concomitance with the presence of certain other things : this is what is experienced and nothing more. There is no relation (sambandhah) other than that of cause and effect.

  •  What is directly perceived is simply that, when a certain preceding thing is present, a subsequent thing comes into being. As was argued in the case of action, no relation of action and factors (kriyākārakasambandhah) exists, since such a ‘relation’ is not perceived as a distinct entity. There is no connection between things other than that of cause and effect. — 10 —

    11. [A relation (sambandha), however conceived, is inadmissible] [95] I 2.11 since, as it rests on the two related terms, it cannot be unitary in nature ; since a thing that is [already] accomplished (siddhasya) cannot ’require’ (apekșanāt) another and dependence (pāratantrya) etc. are not logically tenable. Thus the agent, too, is merely a mental construct.

    [96] I 2.11 - A relation is based on two terms (dvișțhah) and it is not logically tenable for it to rest on both and preserve its unitary nature. Neither is a relation conceivable in the form of a reciprocal requirement (anyonyāpekșā) between two things which are already accomplished nor in the form of a dependence (pāratantrya) of two self-contained things. On the grounds of what has been said, just as the state of cognizer is a mental construct, the same holds good for the agent.

    [97] I 2.11 Thus how is it possible to claim that the Self is the Lord of all ? — 11 —

  • B.N. Pandit (only verses, without the commentaries)

    [The Vijnānavādin says :]

    Just see. There is one variety of perceptual knowledge that brings to light? the basic thing as it is in itself [without the imposition of any name or form on it]. The other [variety of knowing] is that which is variously accompanied by word-images and is known as knowledge with definite or indefinite ideation [that is, conceptual knowledge]. Neither of these two is related [or belongs] to any permanently existing knowing subject, because he is apparently absent in both of them. Even the idea of ‘I-ness’ rests only on the physical body, etc.

    [The Saiva philosopher replies :]

    How could memory, agreeing essentially with previous direct perception, become at all possible after such |direct] knowing comes to its end, if the Atman?, the experiences were not accepted as a constantly existing entity ?

    [The Buddhist objects :]

    Even if the existence of Ātman is accepted, how can the recollection of an object, known through mental experience, become possible long after such experience has already come to its end ? If, however, it is argued that a particular memory takes the same object as the object of the concerned previous experience—since it has risen according to the impressions laid (on Ātman] by the [previous] experience—then it can be asked : What would be the advantage of a permanently existent Ātman, lying there uselessly, like a lump, in between ?

    [The Buddhist further states :]

    Since the character of the Ātman does not change at all during its different functional activities [such as perception, conception, and so on], and since memory can occur [solely] with the help of impressions, the recollector [the Ātman] is also an imaginary entity like the experiencer.

    [It is argued further :]

    If knowledge has the nature of Consciousness, one can ask if, like the Ātman, it is eternal, or if it is non-eternal in character. [That is,] one self-dependent entity cannot be taken as dependent on another such entity. Otherwise, if it [knowledge] is taken as unconscious by nature, then how can it illuminate anything ?

    If it is then argued that buddhi (the understanding sense or intellect) bears in it the consciousness of the Ātman, just as it bears the reflection of an object, then it may either become sentient itself or continue to remain insentient, in which case it cannot illuminate anything.

    Even an action of the body, etc., is simply its contact with different places, etc., in space. [The action] is not any special entity different from [the body, etc.] because it is not seen as such. Besides, it is not a single sequential entity and cannot suitably be an attribute of a single substance.

    [The Vijnānavādin says :]

    What is seen [when elements appear to be in relation to each other] is the rise of some particular objects preceded by some other [similar] ones, and nothing beyond that. Only such [succession] is the relation between cause and effect.

    [The Vijnānavādin continues :]

    The concept of a doer is also based on imagination because : (1) a connection between two [substances ! must involve more than one form ; (2) an established entity does not require dependence on anything other than itself : and (3) mutual dependence [between two established objects or facts] is not an appropriate [concept] at all.