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Thread: Can Samhkya be theistic?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    August 2012
    Augusta, GA
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    Can Samhkya be theistic?

    Namaste and hello,

    I asked this on another forum, and got some great answers, but I figured I would ask here as well. I bet some members here are also members on the other forum.

    1.) Is it Samhkya non-theistic? Or is it more Pantheistic? What are it's metaphysics?

    2.) Branching from #1, if it is non-theistic, where do the Devas fit into it? If at all? A POV I had heard is that there is no absolute supreme God, but the Devas can still be recognized.

    3.) If the devas are a part of it, where does Bhakti fit in? If at all?

    4.) If Bhakti isn't a part of Samkhya, what other margas are? Raja? Jnana? Karma? Something else?

    5.) If Samhkya is non-theistic, and to be an Orthodox Hindu philosophy means to accept the authority of the Vedas, and the Vedas are overwhelmingly theistic in nature, then how can Samhkya be "orthodox"?
    Last edited by yajvan; 10 August 2014 at 07:58 PM. Reason: added salutation - our custom
    There has to be evil so that good can prove its purity over it.

  2. #2

    Re: Can Samhkya be theistic?

    Hello Mr. Galaxy, Namaste

    I am not addressing all your qns here. SAnkhya is theistic and Astika (based on vedas and faith in them), but rather than think 'theistic versus atheistic',

    To understand sAnkhya one must study

    a) Bhagvad GItA (Shri KRshNa's words) -- mostly chapter 2, and beginning of chapter 3.

    b) Instructions by KapilDev to His mother DevahUti -- Shrimad BhAgvat Canto 3,

    SAnkhya is explained in Chapter 26 of Canto 3, but Lord Kapila (who is a plenary avatar of the Lord Himself) sandwiched this Sankhya between yoga (bhakti), and He couldn't emphasize enough that bhakti is the way.

    SB 3.25: The Glories of Devotional Service

    SB 3.26: Fundamental Principles of Material Nature

    SB 3.27: Understanding Material Nature

    SB 3.28: Kapila’s Instructions on the Execution of Devotional Service

    SB 3.29: Explanation of Devotional Service by Lord Kapila

    SB 3.30: Description by Lord Kapila of Adverse Fruitive Activities

    SB 3.31: Lord Kapila’s Instructions on the Movements of the Living Entities

    SB 3.32: Entanglement in Fruitive Activities

    SB 3.33: Activities of Kapila

    || om namo bhagavate vAsudevAya ||
    || Shri KRshNArpaNamastu ||

  3. #3
    Join Date
    January 2010
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    Re: Can Samhkya be theistic?

    Atheistic sankhya is only a subcult of the larger Sankhya school of thought.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    November 2010
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    Re: Can Samhkya be theistic?


    Samkhyakarika makes no mention of Iswara.

    Yoga accepts Samkhya ontology/metaphysics but provides for a place for Iswara as a special being concentration upon whom helps in sadhana.

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