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By far the most popular school of Hindu philosophy, which almost all Hindus nowadays belong to, is the Vedanta school, which is based on an ancient Hindu work called the Brahma Sutras or Vedanta Sutras. The Brahma Sutras consist of a series of aphorisms which summarize and systematize the philosophical teachings of a set of Hindu scriptures called the Upanishads. They also spend some time defending the philosophy of the Upanishads against rival schools of Indian philosophy. In particular, here is what they say concerning Buddhism:

Topic-4: Refutation of Buddhist Realists

  1. Even if the integration be supposed to arise from either of the causes, that will not be achieved.
  2. If it be argued that a combination becomes possible since (nescience and the rest) can be the causes of one another (in a successive series), then we say, no, (for nescience etc.,) can each merely be the cause of origin of another just succeeding.
  3. And because the earlier is negated when the later emerges, (therefore nescience and the rest cannot each be the cause of the next in the series).
  4. (If it be contended that the effect arises) even when there is no cause, then your assertion (of causation) will be stultified; else (if you contend that the entity of the earlier moment continues till the entity of the later moment emerges), the cause and effect will exist simultaneously.
  5. Neither pratisamkhya-nirodha (artificial annihilation) nor an apratisamkhya-nirodha (natural annihilation) is possible, for there can be no cessation (either of the current or of the individuals forming the current).
  6. And (the Buddhist view is untenable) owing to defect arising from either point of view.
  7. And (non-existence cannot be asserted) in the case of Akasa on account of the absence of (its) dissimilarity (with destruction).
  8. And (a permanent soul has to be admitted) because of the fact of remembrance (ie., memory).
  9. Something does not come out of nothing, for this does not accord with experience.
  10. And (if something can come out of nothing, then) on the same ground, success should come even to the indifferent people.

Topic-5: Buddhist Idealism Refuted

  1. (External objects are) not non-existent, for they are perceived.
  2. And because of the difference of nature (the waking state is) not (false) like dream etc.
  3. (Tendencies) can have no existence since (according to you) external things are not perceived.
  4. And (the ego-consciousness cannot be the abode), for it is momentary.
  5. Besides (this view stands condemned), it being untenable from every point of view.

My question is, have any Buddhist thinkers responded to this critique of Buddhism? Note that I don't want answerers to try responding to the critique themselves (which might lead to too much speculation and arguments). I'm just interested in whether any published works have responded to it.

By the way, the aphorisms of the Brahma Sutras are somewhat cryptic, so their meaning and justification are usually understood with the help of commentaries, like this one and this one.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank You in Advance.

EDIT: Here is a book about the Brahma Sutras' critique of the Vedanta school.

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    Good commentary on Brahma Sutras here: swami-krishnananda.org/bs_2/bs_2-2-04.html
    – ruben2020
    Commented Jan 28, 2015 at 10:13
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    Most of them are too obscure. If you expand each point in separate questions, you might get some good answers while you are looking for printed material. Commented Jan 28, 2015 at 12:35
  • @SankhaKulathantille Well, they are obscure, but they're made clearer with the commentaries I linked to. Commented Jan 29, 2015 at 19:39
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    I'm sure! But like I said, since you are the one looking for answers, if you took the time to use the commentaries to make each of these points clearer and present them separately as you understand, you might get some useful answers. Commented Jan 31, 2015 at 16:24
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    Amount of effort that takes to answer depends on the person. Nothing is devastating for the truth of Buddhism. The reality of the universe never changes no matter how much you argue. Commented Feb 1, 2015 at 5:08

6 Answers 6

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I think Nagarjuna's Mulamadhyamakakarika is the work you are looking for. Just like Brahma-sutras does not mention specific Buddhist sutras it debates with, Mulamadhyamakakarika does not mention Brahma-sutras, but it does methodically address the same points.

As ancient texts go, Mulamadhyamakakarika is way too obscure to be brought in here and contrasted point by point, luckily the details of the polemics between the two commentary traditions are surveyed in the book you mentioned, a modern (1980s) work "An Evaluation of the Vedantic Critique of Buddhism". The author concludes (emphasis mine):

In this work, an attempt has been made to compare the interpretations by Shankara, Ramanuja, and Madhva of those sutras of the Vedantic texts, the Brahma-sutra, devoted to a refutation of Buddhism. An attempt has also been made to compare the interpretation by each Vedantic commentator of a particular Buddhist school's position with the actual Buddhist school's position as set forth in its own texts. It has been discovered that Buddhist positions were often distorted out of ignorance or deliberate intent, and that the Vedantic commentators proceeded to build their refutations of Buddhism on the basis of incorrect assumptions. It may have been the case that other matters were of more pressing concerns to the Vedantic commentators than the refutation of Buddhism. [...] In any case, however, it may be concluded that Buddhist positions have not been portrayed correctly in the Vedantic commentaries to the Brahma-sutra.

Another work that compares and contrasts Vedanta and Buddhism is Acharya Mahayogi Sridhar Rana Rinpoche's essay "Madhyamika Buddhism vis-à-vis Hindu Vedanta". Instead of debating with Brahma-sutras it addresses Swami Vivekananda's claim that Buddhism was an offshoot of Vedanta. Although it does not directly address your question, the essay is very informative if you are interested in comparative studies:

In conclusion, I would like to sum it up by stating that Buddhism (especially Mahayana/Vajrayana) is not a reformulation of Hinduism or a negative way of expressing what Hinduism has formulated positively. Hinduism and Buddhism share a common cultural matrix and therefore tend to use the same or similar words. Even though they share certain concepts like karma and re-incarnation, their interpretations differ. Hindu concepts of karma and reincarnation tend to be rather linear, whereas the Buddhist concept is linked with pratityasamutpada. [...] However, all similarities to Hinduism end there. The Shunyata of the Buddha, Nagarjuna and Candrakirti is by no means a negative way of describing the Brahman of the Upanishad, Samkara and Vidhyaranya groups.

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Here is the list of the Buddhist and Hindu Acaryas in chronological order based on their dates and who critiqued whom.

  • Nāgārjuna(1st C.E) critiqued by Vātsyāyana (400 C.E)
  • Vātsyāyana critiqued by Dignāga(500 C.E)
  • Dignāga critiqued by Kumārila bhaṭṭa/Saṇkarācarya(6th-7th century)
  • Kumarila bhatta/Saṇkarācarya critiqued by Dharmakriti (6th or 7th century)
  • Dharmakriti critiqued by Vācaspati Miśra(841 C.E)
  • Vācaspati Miśra critiqued by Jñānaśrimitra(975-1025 C.E)
  • Jñānaśrimitra ( C.E) critiqued by (C.E) Udayanācārya (10th -11th century)
  • Udayanācārya( C.E) critiqued by Ratnakirti(C.E)
  • Ratnakirti (11th century CE) critiqued by none so far.

So, yes of course the Vedanta/hindu philosophy propounded in Brahma Sutra is critiqued by Buddhist philosophers time and again in the history of development of Indian philosophy.

As you might have been familiar with the style of the Indian philosophers, they did not critique the texta per se but the tenent systems in them.

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  • /|\ welcome to Buddhism Q&A
    – Andriy Volkov
    Commented Mar 3, 2018 at 16:14
  • This is a good answer, but it would be even better, if it included sources.
    – ruben2020
    Commented May 1, 2020 at 5:33
  • This is very informative.
    – Pycm
    Commented Apr 1 at 17:23
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I have not found a single source that addresses the Brahma Sutras directly, but as Bakmoon says, it is possible to find references in texts regarding some of these points. It might be better to add each point or a few relevant points into one question each, with commentaries, in order to obtain good answers.

Points 18 - 21's discussion of cause and effect, seem to be related to and may be answered by SN 12.17 Acela Sutta: (This comes from here but the full text can be found here)

Again, when the Buddha was asked by the naked ascetic Kassapa whether suffering was of one's own making or of another's or both or neither, the Buddha replied "Do not put it like that." When asked whether there was no suffering or whether the Buddha neither knew nor saw it, the Buddha replied that there was, and that he both knew and saw it. He then said "Kassapa, if one asserts that 'He who makes (it) feels (it): being one existent from the beginning, his suffering is of his own making,' then one arrives at eternalism. But if one asserts that one makes (it), another feels (it); being one existent crushed out by feeling, his suffering is of another's making,' then one arrives at annihilationism. Instead of resorting to either extreme a Tathaagata teaches the Dhamma by the middle way (by dependent origination)" (S. XII, 17/vol. ii, 20).

If Point 25 relates to rebirth as proof that a permanent soul exists in order to transmigrate, then there is an answer here (Milindapanha 3.5.5):

The king asked: "Venerable Nagasena, is it so that one does not transmigrate and one is reborn?" "Yes, your majesty, one does not transmigrate and one is reborn." "How, venerable Nagasena, is it that one does not transmigrate and one is reborn? Give me an analogy." "Just as, your majesty, if someone kindled one lamp from another, is it indeed so, your majesty, that the lamp would transmigrate from the other lamp?" "Certainly not, venerable sir." "Indeed just so, your majesty, one does not transmigrate and one is reborn." "Give me another analogy." "Do you remember, your majesty, when you were a boy learning some verse from a teacher?" "Yes, venerable sir." "Your majesty, did this verse transmigrate from the teacher?" "Certainly not, venerable sir." "Indeed just so, your majesty, one does not transmigrate and one is reborn."

There is a discussion on the above in another answer. That compares the discovery of quantum entanglement in physics, with the above.

However, if Point 25 relates to memory in our present lifetime as suggested by this Brahma Sutras' commentary, then I would say that when a person experiences brain damage, he could lose his memories (from a modern day scientific perspective). So, if having memories is proof of having a permanent soul that links them together, then is losing one's memories proof of losing one's soul? This can be linked to the following quote:

The characteristic is stated more succinctly in this way: "The eye (ear, nose, tongue, body, and mind, and six external bases) is impermanent; what is impermanent is suffering; what is suffering is not self" (S. XXXV, 1/vol. iv, 1); or "All is not-self. And what is the all that is not self? The eye is not self..." (S. XXXV, 45/vol. iv, 28); or again "All things (dhamma) are not-self" (e.g. Dh. XX, 7/v. 279). The canonical commentary, the Pa.tisambhidaamagga, adds "Materiality (etc.) is not-self in the sense that it has no core (saara)" (Ps. ~Naanakathaa/vol. i, 37).

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This answer is written with reference to Brahma Sutras with commentary by Adi Shankara (BSSB), translated by Swami Vireshwarananda (1936).

The Brahma Sutras are too cryptic to be understood without a commentary. And Adi Shankara is probably the most reputable commentator of the Brahma Sutras. Adi Shankara to Hinduism is like Nagarjuna to Mahayana Buddhism.

BSSB: This Sutra begins the refutation of the Bauddha school. There are three principal schools of Buddhism, viz . the Realists, who accept the reality of both the outside and the inside world, consisting respectively of external things and thought; the Idealists, who maintain that thought alone is real; and the Nihilists, who maintain that everything is void and unreal. But all of them agree that everything is momentary—nothing lasts beyond a moment.

BS 2.2.18-27 refutes the Buddhist Realists (Theravada?), BS 2.2.28-32 refutes the Buddhist Idealists (Yogachara? Cittamatra?) and Nihilists (Madhyamaka?).

The first misconception is that everything is momentary according to Theravada. Physical matter is not momentary. Only mental states have moments. This is according to the body vs. monkey mind analogy of SN 12.61.

Based on the commentary, the Realists are assumed to believe that everything is composed of mind and matter. The "Bauddha series" refers to the 12 nidanas of Dependent Origination and the aggregates refer to the five aggregates. Nescience means ignorance.

I'll quote a few parts of the commentary.

BSSB: The question now arises, how are these aggregates formed ? Is there an intelligent principle behind as the cause, the guide, of the aggregation, or does it take place spontaneously? If there is an intelligent principle, is it stationary or momentary? If it is stationary, the Buddhistic doctrine of momentariness is contradicted. If it is momentary, then we cannot say that it comes into existence first and then unites the atoms, for that would mean that the cause lasts for more than one moment. Again, if there is no intelligent principle as guide, how can the non-intelligent atoms and the Skandhas aggregate in a systematic way? Moreover, the activity would be eternal, and there would be no destruction or Pralaya. For ali these reasons the formation of aggregates cannot be accounted for, and in their absence there cannot exist the stream of mundane existence. Consequently, the doctrine of this school of Bauddhas is untenable.

The second misconception is that Buddhism is concerned with metaphysics, ontology and cosmology, just as Hindu schools of philosophy are. The statement above talks about the origin or formation of the five aggregates.

It states that Dependent Origination doesn't explain how the five aggregates originate. If there is an intelligent entity like God, which caused the aggregates to form, then is He permanent (stationary) or momentary? If God is permanent, then the assumption of Buddhist momentariness is violated. If God is momentary, then He might disappear before the five aggregates are put together. If there is no God, then how would the body and the rest of the five aggregates come together? Even if there is literal rebirth, how exactly does rebirth-linking consciousness (if not soul), travel from one place to another and enter the right womb, without the intervention of God? Dependent Origination doesn't explain this.

Buddhism is not interested in metaphysics, ontology and the origin of the cosmos. Buddhism is only interested in solving the problem of suffering (soteriology). The creation or origin of the five aggregates, and whether intelligent design and control is behind it, is not of Buddhism's concern. This is explained by the Parable of the Poisoned Arrow in MN 63 and the discourse on the unconjecturables of AN 4.77.

If one is shot with a poisoned arrow, he should not ask "where does the arrow come from?", "who shot it?", "what is it made of?", "why was it shot?". Instead, it's practical to ask "how to remove the arrow and save my life?"

BSSB: The Sutra can also be explained as follows: The Bauddhas say, if we hold that the atoms stand in a relation of causality, then no combining principle of the atoms would be necessary; in that case they would join of themselves. The latter part of the Sutra refutes this saying that the causality will explain only the production of the atoms of the pot of a subsequent moment by the atoms of the pot of a previous moment, but will not explain the combination of the atoms into an aggregate, which can take place only if there is an intelligent agent behind, for otherwise the combination of inert and momentary atoms cannot be explained.

The third misconception is that Dependent Origination is used to explain the origin or cause of physical matter or even mental aggregates. That's not true. Dependent Origination is used to explain the birth of a mental self-identity, or individuality. It is not used to explain the arising of the five aggregates. A detailed explanation on dependent origination can be found in this answer.

BSSB: The Sutra now refutes that even the successive causality spoken of the series Nescience, Samskaras, etc. is untenable. Since everything is momentary, the antecedent thing would already have ceased to exist at the next moment, when the subsequent thing is created; so it cannot be the cause of the other. The clay that exists at the time the pot is created, is alone the cause of the pot, and not that which existed before and has ceased to exist then. ..... Again on account of the momentariness of things ‘origination’ and ‘destruction’ will be synonymous, for if we say there is difference between the two, then we shall be forced to say that the thing lasts at least for more than one moment, and consequently we shall have to abandon the doctrine of momentariness. ....

If, to avoid the difficulty shown in the previous Sutra, the Bauddhas say that effects are produced without a cause, then they would contradict their own proposition that every effect has a cause. If on the other hand a cause be assumed, then we have to accept that the cause and effect exist simultaneously at the next moment, i.e. the cause lasts for more.than one moment, as already shown in the last Sutra, which would falsify the doctrine of momentariness.

The fourth misconception is that each nidana is the cause of the next one, and since each nidana is momentary, so it may disappear before the next nidana appears. This is wrong, because each nidana is the condition and not the cause of the next one. And all the nidanas (from ignorance to birth) have to line-up at every mind moment, for the birth of the mental self-identity to appear, at every mind moment.

BSSB: The Bauddhas maintain that universal destruction is ever going on, and that this destruction is of two kinds, conscious and unconscious. The former depends upon an act of thought, as when a jar is broken by a man with a stick, while the latter is the natural decay of things. The Sutra says that either kind of destruction would be impossible, for it must refer either to the series of momentary existences or to the single members of that series. The series is continuous and can never be stopped. Why ? Because the. last momentary existence before such destruction must be assumed either to produce its effect or not to produce it. If it does then the series would continue and will not be destroyed. If it does not produce the effect, the last momentary existence ceases to be a fact at all, for according to the Bauddhas existence (Satta) means causal efficiency. Again the non-existence of the last momentary existence would lead backward to the non-existence of the previous momentary existence and so on of the whole series.

Again these two kinds of destruction cannot be found in the individual members of the series also. For owing to the momentary existence of each member no conscious destruction of it is possible. Neither can it be unconscious destruction, since the individual member is not altogether destroyed; for when a pot is destroyed we find the existence of the clay in the sherds. Even in those cases where it seems to vanish, as when a drop of water disappears on account of heat, we can infer that it continues to exist in some other form, viz. as steam.

Things always being destroyed probably refers to impermanence (anicca).

The statement above says that things cannot be impermanent, because they cannot be destroyed, because the chain of cause and effect of Dependent Origination cannot be stopped, since it keeps going forever. If it has to stop due to destruction, then cause and effect cannot be true.

This argument doesn't make any sense, if we consider all the previous misconceptions above. It's an argument based on multiple misconceptions.

BSSB: Nescience, according to the Bauddhas, is the false idea of permanency in things momentary. They say that on the destruction of it Moksha or Freedom is attained. Now this destruction of Nescience must be one of the two kinds referred to in the last Sutra. If it is a conscious destruction, depending on the effort of the individual — his penance and knowledge then this would go(?) counter to the Buddhistic doctrine of momentariness, according to which Nescience will also be momentary and cease to exist after a moment of its own accord. And if we say that the destruction of ignorance is spontaneous, then the Buddhist instruction ac to the ‘path’ is useless. So in either case the Bauddha position is untenable.

The idea above is that ignorance (nescience) is momentary, so it appears and disappears. If ignorance is consciously overcome (with effort), then the doctrine of momentariness is not obeyed. If it is spontaneously overcome (without any effort), then the Noble Eightfold Path is useless.

The fifth misconception is that ignorance is momentary and that it disappears completely at every moment (resulting in Nirvana) and then reappears again. This is not right. Ignorance is impermanent, but it's not momentary. Not everything is momentary. Only mental operations and the mental self-identity is momentary. Ignorance and craving can continue to exist through multiple mind moments.

BSSB: According to the Bauddhas, besides the twofold destruction Akasa or space is a third non-entity. It means the absence in general of any covering or occupying body. It has been shown in Sutras 22-23 that the two kinds of destruction are not absolutely devoid of positive characteristics and so cannot be non-entities. The case of Akasa is also similar. Just as earth, air, etc. are recognized to be entities in consequence of their being the substratum of properties like smell etc., similarly Akasa also on account of its being the substratum of sound ought to be recognized as an entity. Earth etc. are experienced through their attributes, and the existence of Akasa also is experienced through its attribute, sound. Consequently it also must be an entity.

Hindu scriptures have 5 great elements, and Buddhist suttas usually mention 4 great elements. The missing element is space or akasha.

This is the sixth misconception, because space is mentioned as an element in SN 27.9 and MN 140.

BSSB: If everything is momentary, the experiencer or enjoyer of something must also be momentary. But that the enjoyer is not momentary and abides longer is realized from the fact that people have the memory of past experiences. Memory is possible only in a person who has previously experienced it, for what is experienced by one man is not remembered by another. So the agent of the experience and the remembrance being the same, he is connected with at least two moments—which refutes the doctrine of momentariness.

The argument to support an individual soul is that personality and memory exists continuously, so it must depend on the existence of an individual soul for its continuity.

This argument can be easily refuted. A person who suffers from brain injury or Alzheimer's disease, or the effects of drugs, could forget his personal identity or have his personality changed.

Also, computers remembering data or configuration using data storage, does not prove that computers have an individual soul.

BSSB: The Bauddhas say that from anything that is eternal and non-changing no effects can be produced; for that which does not change cannot give rise to effects. So they say that the cause undergoes destruction before the effect is produced. The seed undergoes destruction, and then the sprout comes out. In other words, existence springs from non-existence. The Sutra refutes this by saying that if it were so, then the assumption of special causes would be meaningless. Anything might spring from anything; for non-entity is the same in all cases.

This is answered by SN 12.17. Future consequences are neither completely unrelated to past actions (annihilationism i.e. no one owns it), nor are they completely related to past actions (eternalism i.e. the same individual soul owns it). The Buddha takes the middle way through explaining this using Dependent Origination.

BSSB: From this Sutra begins the refutation of the Idealists among the Bauddhas, according to whom only ideas exist and nothing else.

According to them the external world is nonexistent.

This is the seventh misconception. Yogachara doesn't say that the external world doesn't exist with respect to metaphysics, ontology and cosmology. Rather, it says that, based on soteriology. This is explained in this answer.

It's a method or tool to solve the problem of suffering. It's not an explanation of how the universe exists. This is the second misconception, applied to Yogachara.

BSSB: Nihilism of the Bauddhas goes counter to everything. It goes against the Sruti, the Smriti, perception, inference, and every other means of right knowledge and so has to be entirely disregarded by those who are mindful of their welfare.

The eighth misconception is that Madhyamaka states that nothing exists at all, with respect to metaphysics, ontology and cosmology. That's not true. Rather, it says that, based on soteriology. This is explained in this question and answer.

It's a method or tool to solve the problem of suffering. It's not an explanation of how the universe exists. This is the second misconception, applied to Madhyamaka.

In conclusion, the Brahma Sutras have a mostly misconceived or distorted basis of Buddhist doctrines, upon which refutations are made. Some refutations can be easily dismissed using modern day knowledge of science.

This (distortion) agrees with the conclusion of Gregory J. Darling's book "An Evaluation of the Vedantic Critique of Buddhism", that was quoted in Andriy's answer.

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  • While the point you are attempting to make is correct, I cannot discern how MN 63 & AN 4.77 support your view about the non-declaration of the existent origin of the aggregates. Note: AN 4.77 appears to say the matters in it cannot be known by "thinking" rather than the matters cannot be known. Also, Buddhaghosa's Visuddhimagga appears to say dependent origination literally "produces" the five aggregates. Buddhaghosa says "jati" in depenent origination is physical. Commented Apr 1 at 8:21
  • On page 510, Buddhaghosa says: "Here it should be regarded as the aggregates that occur from the time of rebirth-linking up to the exit from the mother’s womb in the case of the wombborn, and as only the aggregates of rebirth-linking in the case of the rest. But this is only an indirect treatment. In the direct sense, however, it is the first manifestation of any aggregates that are manifested in living beings when they are born anywhere that is called “birth.” " Commented Apr 1 at 8:27
  • On page 190, Buddhaghosa also says "the aggregates generated (nibbattā) by the kamma are rebirth process becoming (upapattibhavo), the generating (nibbatti) of the aggregates is birth, their maturing is ageing, their dissolution is death." Commented Apr 1 at 8:28
  • @DhammaDhatu I removed Buddhaghosa and updated the answer to meet your objection. The commentary from Adi Shankara for BS 2.2.18 is about God, an intelligent principle and His role in putting the five aggregates together. Is God stationary or momentary? If there's no God, then how would the five aggregates come together? Even if there is literal rebirth, how exactly does rebirth-linking consciousness (if not soul), travel from one place to another and enter the right womb, without God doing it? That's not explained by Dependent Origination. This is the refutation by Adi Shankara.
    – ruben2020
    Commented Apr 1 at 12:46
  • I am not sure what the debates were about however but it seems the debates may not address Buddhaghosa's view. The subject of the five aggregates in the debates are certainly weird because how do the Hindus account for the five aggregates? Do the Hindu deny the existence of the five aggregates? Commented Apr 1 at 22:32
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Among various Indian Buddhist figures within the Madhyamaka tradition, most of them made general criticisms against the ideas of other religions, including vedanta, and I think that many of the criticisms of the Brahma Sutras are touched on in Buddhist literature (the Milindapanha comes to mind for example) but I don't think that any of these texts specifically address the Brahma Sutras as opposed to just addressing criticism in general.

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  • First of all, isn't it implausible that in two millennia, not a single Buddhist thinker have specifically addressed the Brahma Sutras? Commented Jan 28, 2015 at 0:31
  • In any case, if it's really true that not a single person has specifically addressed the Brahma Sutras, can you at least tell me what responses there have been to the content of these Sutras, even if they're not referred to by name? (For instance, "The argument made in Sutra 25 has been responded to in this passage of the Milindapanha.) That would make for a proper answer. Commented Jan 28, 2015 at 0:36
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Even if the integration be supposed to arise from either of the causes, that will not be achieved.

Unsubstantiated nonsense.

If it be argued that a combination becomes possible since (nescience and the rest) can be the causes of one another (in a successive series), then we say, no, (for nescience etc.,) can each merely be the cause of origin of another just succeeding. And because the earlier is negated when the later emerges, (therefore nescience and the rest cannot each be the cause of the next in the series).

This is wrong. In dependent origination, ignorance (nescience) remains throughout the other eleven conditions and never ceases from beginning to end of the twelve conditions. For example, when the twelve conditions culminate in sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief & despair, obviously the greiving mind remains with ignorance.

(If it be contended that the effect arises) even when there is no cause, then your assertion (of causation) will be stultified; else (if you contend that the entity of the earlier moment continues till the entity of the later moment emerges), the cause and effect will exist simultaneously.

There are no effects without causes. Causes & effects certainly exist simultaneously but not permanently. For example, the pleasure arising from eating chocolate does not exist permanently.

Neither pratisamkhya-nirodha (artificial annihilation) nor an apratisamkhya-nirodha (natural annihilation) is possible, for there can be no cessation (either of the current or of the individuals forming the current).

Pratisamkhya-nirodha is the cessation of mental suffering and not annihilation. Since in Buddhism the "individual" ("sakkaya") is merely a thought or "view" ("sakkaya-ditthi"), the individual can be subject to cessation. In other words, the "false ego" asserted by Hindusim ceases when the "True Self" merges with Brahman. The difference with Buddhism is there is no "True Self". There is only false ego. Since Hinduism itself declares the false-ego can cease, Hinduism agrees with Buddhism.

And (the Buddhist view is untenable) owing to defect arising from either point of view.

If Buddhism is not understood, attempting to refute it is pointless.

And (non-existence cannot be asserted) in the case of Akasa on account of the absence of (its) dissimilarity (with destruction).

Asaka (space) is impermanent. For example, filling the space in a bucket with concrete.

And (a permanent soul has to be admitted) because of the fact of remembrance (ie., memory).

Since memory can be lost or impaired, the memory of a permanent soul is disproven. For example, I cannot remember what I did during the 5th minute of the 5th hour of the 5th day of the 5th year of my life.

Something does not come out of nothing, for this does not accord with experience. And (if something can come out of nothing, then) on the same ground, success should come even to the indifferent people.

Buddhism doesn't say something comes out of nothing.

(External objects are) not non-existent, for they are perceived. And because of the difference of nature (the waking state is) not (false) like dream etc.

This is irrelevent, again, because Buddhism does not teach about the non-existent. For example, SN 12.15 refutes the doctrine of the non-existent. However, True Self is certainly non-existent in Buddhism. How can the self-view of a 50 year old be the same self-view of a 5 year old?

(Tendencies) can have no existence since (according to you) external things are not perceived.

Tendencies inherently exist due to internal biology rather than due to external objects. For example, the sexual tendencies of a five year old body are not the same as 15 year old body and not the same as a 115 year old body. Again, this attempted refutation is stupid.

And (the ego-consciousness cannot be the abode), for it is momentary.

Ego is a thought that is a sense object of consciousness rather than a type of consciousness. The ego thought is inherently caused by tendencies (anusaya) rather than is an inherent tendency itself. While Buddhism does teach there are tendencies to create self-views, these self-view tendencies are generally propelled by the coarser tendencies related to sensuality. This is why the sensual tendency is listed first.

Besides (this view stands condemned), it being untenable from every point of view.

These refutations are nonsensical speech. Again, it is not possible to refute what is not understood.

The only reason Hindus such as Adi Shankara were able to refute Buddhist scholars, similar to Buddhaghosa, is because certain generations of Buddhist monks, similar to Buddhaghosa, did not understand Buddhism very well. Adi Shankara may have possibly been the most reputable commentator of the Brahma Sutras however the same did not apply to Buddhaghosa in relation to Theravada Buddhism.

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