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Vivarana Prameya Sangraha

Vivarana Prameya Sangraha is a text that elucidates the Vivarana tradition. The text is based on Padmapada’s Panchapadika, a commentary on Brahma Sutras. Bharatitirtha-Vidyaranya (14th century CE) is the author of Vivarana Prameya Sangraha. It is clear from the textual evidence that Vidyaranya was a disciple of Shankarananda and Vidyatirtha. Historians have identified him with Madhavacharya, the author of Panchadasi and Sarvadarshana Sangraha, who was a minister of King Bukka I of Vijayanagara.

The major dialectical text in this tradition is Panchapadika Vivarana of Prakasatman, in nine chapters, called varnakas; it summarizes the basic tenets of the Vivarana School. The first four varnakas discuss the import of the first sutra and the vishaya (content) and prayojana (reason) of Vedanta inquiry, the nature of avidya (ignorance) and its removal.

The fifth varnaka explains the second sutra, and deals with the nature of the Brahman. The sixth and seventh varnakas explain the third Sutra and discuss the status of Shruti and exhibit Brahman’s omniscience as the material cause of Veda. They also provide an alternative interpretation of the third sutra dealing with Pratibimbavada and the concept of maya and avidya being one and the same thing.

The fourth sutra is dealt with in the eighth varnaka, in which the validity of Vedanta in cognizing Brahman is explored. The ninth varnaka deals with the refutation of the view that Brahman is subsidiary to what is to be accomplished and proves that there is no plurality in the self and that the understanding of the non-duality sublates the perception of duality.