Schopenhauer in Die Welt refers to the Vedanta in Die Welt; and in one specific passage he declares:

'It is Maya, the veil of deception, which blinds the eyes of mortals and makes them behold a world of which they cannot say that it is or that it is not: for it is like a dream; it is like the sunshine on the sand which the traveller from afar takes to be water; or the stray piece of rope he takes for a snake'.

This he declares appears in 'innumerable' passages in the Vedas and the Puranas; is there a specific passage in say the Upanishads that can be cited as a specific reference, that can be considered as the ur-reference?

And is it wrong to take the Upanishads in preference to the Puranas?

  • There are innumerable references as he says. Much more in the Upanishads than the Puranas. Jun 2 '15 at 10:13
  • @SwamiVishwananda: I just want to clarify that I don't mean the specific word 'maya' but the paragraph quoted itself; it seems surprising that such a lengthy piece repeats itself - unless, I suppose it acts as a kind of liturgy or chorus; which I realise aren't the right words to describe this. Jun 2 '15 at 22:36
  • Understood. The word Maya was not always used. The concept of maya first appears in the RIg Veda, but becomes more fully developed in the Upanishads. Also, remember that the Upanishads are part of the Vedas, they are not separate from it. The Puranas are separate from the Vedas and are more of myths and stories and less philosophical treatises. Also, some sects will follow one purana and not another, but all acknowledge the Upanishads. If you want specific scriptural verses in the Rig Veda or Upanishad references I can give. Jun 3 '15 at 4:48
  • A good source on the subject is in Swami Vireswarananda's translation of the Brahma Sutras. In the intro there is a section called "Adhyasa or Superimposition" Many sites have it available as a free pdf download. Here is one of the sites - ebookdig.biz/ebook/q/pdf/… Jun 3 '15 at 11:22

Maya means space, time and causality. When you go to bed, your partner sees your body, in her world she calls it 'asleep', she says you are asleep.

But you are not asleep. You are in another space, time and causality, Maya.

We lazily call it a dream, though a two year old says she 'disappeared to nannies house'. The two year old uses a more precise wording than the adult.

The dream is made of the same ingredients as this dream.

Of course I have taken this from Kant and Schopenhauer, but those two Titans didn't go as far as me. But if you read Gaudapadha, and with your knowledge of what Schopenhauer was getting at, and then you go to bed and you disappear to another Maya, then jnana (understanding) happens and the knot untangle's for a second.

Then you forget again.

  • 1
    +1 Is there a reference to what Gaudapadha wrote or is this a work itself? Where is Kant and Schopenhauer should I look for this? Mar 23 '18 at 13:28

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.