A History of Indian Philosophy V.5

  • Item #: 0579
Volume V Chapter XXXIVLiterature of Southern Saivism The Literature and History of Southern Saivism. The earliest Sanskrit philosophical literature in which we find a reference to Saivism is a bhasya of Sankara (eighth century) on Brahma-sutra II.2.37. In the commentary of this sutra, Sankara refers to the doctrines of the Siddhantas as having been written by Lord Mahesvara. The peculiarity of the teachings of the Siddhantas was that they regarded God as being only the instrumental cause of the world. Here and elsewhere Sankara has called the upholders of this view Isvara-karanins. If Siva or God was regarded as both the instrumental and the material cause of the world., according to the different Siddhanta schools of thought, then there would be no point in introducing the sutra under reference, for according to Sankara also, God is both the instrumental and the material cause of the world. Sankara seems to refer here to the Pasupata system which deals with the five categories, such as the cause (karana), effect (karya), communion (yoga), rules of conduct (vidhi), and thhe dissolution of sorrow (duhkhanta). According to him it also holds that Pasupati (God) is the instrumental cause of the world. In this view the Naiyayikas and the Vaisesikas also attribute the same kind of causality to God and offer the same kind of arguments, i.e., the inference of the cause from the effect.
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