Visishtādvaita and Wahdatul-Wujūd: Points of comparison and departure
Not only in philosophy but in religion as well, concepts such as God, World and Man are discussed quite considerably. Nevertheless, an understanding of these concepts requires careful, detailed and systematic analyses. One of the methods of achieving the same is to use a comparative framework. Within Islam, Wahdatul-Wujud (Unity of Existence) is an important mystical and philosophical perspective that has witnessed a tumultuous journey. It has however played a dominant role in Islamic thought. Within Indian philosophy, Vedānta has played a very influential role. Visistādvaita as a school of thought has also played a great role to interpret core philosophical concepts of Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita and Brahma Sutras. In this research paper, we attempt to provide a comparative analysis of Visistādvaita and Wahdatul-Wujud marking out the aspects of similarity and departures. What stands out as relevant and insightful as an implication of the comparative method is an understanding of these two approaches. Wahdatul-Wujud is redefined as a panentheistic philosophy which believes that God exists inside of everything, but is at the same time, transcendent of everything. In this type ofbelief, God is seen as an eternal spark of all things, the Prime Mover. Quite similarly, Visistādvaita, on the other hand is conceived as a Qualified Non- dualistic philosophy which believes in subsuming every diverse phenomena and experience under an underlying unity.
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