It is important for me to keep in mind the following fact while reading the texts in Advaita Vedanta. In advaita, avidya is a deliberate superimposition or model construct, and it is an adhyaaropa. Once the aspirant transcends the need for such an arrangement or model construct, this arrangement is dropped or negated, that is called apavaada.
In this context, it has been explained that avidya or causal body is the Upadhi for Jiva.It is called Causal body as it is the cause of gross and subtle bodies of the Jeeva and the body ends with the wake of Self Knowledge. The avidya ends with Vidya or knowledge.
Experience of pure avidya is found in deep sleep. In deep sleep the jiva is is neither identified with sthoola saria nor sookshma sarira but with kaarana sariram in which everything is in a dormant condition. The Jiva identified with the causal body (Avidya) is called Praajna.
The jiva identified with causal body is called Praajna because of two reasons.
1.The first reason being the jiva who is exceedingly ignorant is called Praajna. When the jiva is identified with the causal body (as in deep sleep) there will be total ignorance and after getting up sleep one says that one has slept like a log and does not remember anything. The jiva is exceedingly ignorant.
2.The second definition is the Jiva, which has knowledge, is Praajna. Ignorance is also known to the jiva. It is also explained that the jiva experiences the bliss of self even though it is unaware of it. Prajna is the ananda pertained to Self but unaware of it because of tamas.
The Jiva is alpajna because of avidya upadhi. Where as, Iswara is Sarvajna because of Maya upadhi.
For the experience of Jiva, the tamoguna pradhana prakriti under the will of Iswara creates five great elements or Pancha maha Bhutas.Iswara is the nimitta kaarana or sentient cause. Prakriti is the upaadaana kaarana or material cause. The five great elements are Space, Air, Fire, Water and Earth. They are called (Apanchikrita) Tanmatras or subtle elements.All the five elements have all the three gunas of prakriti.
The Space has the property of shabda or sound.
The Air has the property of Sparsha or touch in addition to the Shabda guna.
The fire has the property of Rupa or form in addition to the shabda &sparsha guna.
The Water has the property of rasa or taste in addition to the shabda, sparsha&rupa guna.
The earth has the property of gandha or smell in addition to the shabda, sparsha, rupa&rasa guna.
This called Bhoota Srishti or creation of elements.
In the next sloka onwards Pujya Vidyaranyaji talked about Bhoutika Srishti or creation from the five great elements. All these five elements have all the three qualities of Prakriti.
From the individual Satva guna aspect of the subtle five elements, five organs of knowledge or jnanendriyas are born. They are called subtle sense organs (The faculty of hearing, the faculty of touch, visual faculty, the faculty of taste and the faculty of smell).
From the total Satva guna aspect of the subtle five elements antahkarana or inner instrument is born. Depending on the functional difference in the thoughts it is of two fold. When the thoughts are in the state of oscillation or doubt it is called manas or mind and when the thoughts are in the form of decisive nature it is called Buddhi or intellect.