Vision Of Truth (sad darshanam) – Part 20

yadIshiturvIkshaNamIkshitAram

avIkshya tanmAnasikekshaNam syAt

na drashTuranyaH paramo hi tasya

vIkshA svamUle pravilIya niShThA—22

 

yadIshituH vIkshaNam = that (which)vision of Ishvara as an object; IkshitAram = Atma, the observer; avIkshya = not recognizing; tanmAnasikekshaNam syAt = will be a mental projection; drashTuranyaH paramaH na = No supreme other than seer; hi = indeed; tasya vIkshA = his vision; svamUle niShThA = abidance in one’s own nature; pravilIya = having resolved.

 

That vision of Ishvara (as an object), which is, without recognizing the observer Atma, is only a mental projection. There indeed is no supreme other than the seer. His vision is the abidance in one’s own nature having resolved the triad.

 

As long as Ishvara is considered as an entity separate from oneself, so long misery continues. Vision of Ishvara as an object, is merely a mental projection. If one has a vision, it is something other, external to him, meaning, the form of the vision has a beginning outside of him. Hence, there is a limited form to the Ishvara seen in a vision. Such an Ishvara is finite. How is that vision of any help?

Continue reading

New Questions

All visitors are cordially invited to ask questions, which may be answered by any or all of the bloggers. The existing list of questions have already been answered and it is very likely that you will find something of relevance. However, as yet, they have not been sorted into categories so that you may have difficulty locating something! Accordingly, if you want to ask a question, and do not object to its being included in this section, please email me. (Note that all Q & As are posted anonymously, but you will receive a personal notification when this is done.)

Creator and Created

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI am the light that is above them all, I am the all,

and the all came from me and the all attained to me.

Cleave a piece of wood and I am there;

lift up the stone and you will find me there.

You can find thousands of sayings like this in the Upanishads, in the Gita, in Buddha, but you cannot find a single parallel in the Old Testament. So which scriptures has Jesus come to fulfill? He has come to fulfill some other scriptures, some other traditions. This saying is absolutely Vedanta, so try to understand first the standpoint of Vedanta, then you will be able to understand this saying.

Jesus was born as a Jew, lived as a Jew, died as a Jew – but this is only as far as the body is concerned; otherwise Jesus was a pure Hindu. And you cannot find a purer Hindu than Jesus, because the base of Upanishadic religion is his base. He created the whole structure on that base, so try to understand what that base is. Continue reading

The Theory of Vivarta

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Advaita Vedaanta explains the creation of the world by the theory of vivarta. (…) According to Advaita, the effect is not an actual transformation of the cause. Brahman is immutable and there can be no transformation of it. It only serves as the substratum (adhishThaana) for the appearance of the universe, just as the rope serves as the substratum for the appearance of the illusory snake.

(…)

This appearance of the universe is due to avidyaa, or nescience, which conceals Brahman by its veiling power (aavaraNa s’akti) and projects the universe by its power of projection (vikshepa s’akti). The universe is therefore said to be only a vivarta, or apparent transformation, of Brahman. Like the illusory snake with rope as the substratum, the universe is illusory, or mithyaa, with Brahman as the substratum.

But there is a vital difference between the illusoriness of the rope-snake and that of the universe. While the snake is purely illusory, or praatibhaasika, the universe has empirical, or vyaavahaarika, reality. That means that the universe is real for all those who are still in ignorance of Brahman. It loses its reality only when Brahman is realized as the only reality and as identical with one’s own self, or, in other words, when identification with the body-mind complex completely disappears.

Bondage is nothing but identification with the body-mind complex. This identification being due only to the ignorance of the truth that one is really the aatmaa, which is the same as Brahman, it can be removed only by the knowledge of one’s real nature as Brahman.

Vedanta Spiritual Library | http://www.celextel.org/                                                 Elucidation of Terms and Concepts in Vedanta                                                         [Based on the Commentaries of Sri Sankaracharya and other authoritative texts]                                       By S. N. Sastri

More short Q and As

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAQ: I’ve read something in Advaita about making meaning out of meaningless events. Are there any events to which meaning can be given?

A: You need to be a bit more specific here. But you are in any case talking about the empirical level of experience, not absolute reality. Time (and hence ‘events’) is within the former; it is not absolutely real. Similarly, there are no separate ‘objects’ (or ‘people’) in reality. Whether or not an event is ‘meaningful’ is going to be a subjective opinion! If you want my subjective view, there are probably only two meaningful events: when you commit to Self-inquiry and when you realize the truth! Continue reading

Three Advaitic Views on Creation

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The Supreme Brahman is both the material as well intelligent 
cause but unchanging;

The creation is transfiguration and not production of a thing not 
existing before or transformation.

97668_web_R_by_Hans Georg Staudt_pixelio.de

  1. yathA srShTi tathA drShTi – as the creation so the vision 
(experience) is put forth by advocates of many 
individual souls. Hence creation of the world is by God; certain experiences (universal) like fire burning whether you know it or not, 
sun will rise in east and set in west even if you know truth to be 
otherwise; sky will appear blue though colourless…. World has 
empirical reality.
  1. yathA drShTi tathA srShTi – as the vision (experience) so the 
creation is put forth by advocates of single soul. 
One’s own likes and dislikes are the cause for 
experience of pleasure and pain and contact of senses with objects is 
the producer of heat and cold. So whole world is subjective. World is 
apparent reality.
  1. ajAta – not separately born is put forth by those who say there is 
no individual soul separate from brahman at any point of time. 
As all have to agree that in the beginning (before world) only brahman was there and after dissolution it is only going to be there, that 
which was not in the beginning and not going to be in the end need not be accepted to exist in the middle. Since Vedas declare all these are brahman only, they hold at no point of time there is a jIva
(individual soul) ever separated from brahman to be re-united through efforts and become brahman – none in bondage or trying for release or as released. Since brahman cannot be grasped but is the substratum of this 
superimposed world, all talk about world/its creation by Veda is to teach about the brahman.

All three are advaitic in nature and based on Vedas. So no one school needs to criticize the other two.

From a post of Br. Pranipata Chaitanya in the Yahoo Advaitin group (March 2009)

Photo Credits: Hans Georg Staudt@pixelio.de

Creation according to Vasishtha

P1000932asa~NkalpajAlakalanaiva jagatsamagraM

sa~Nkalpameva nanu viddhi vilAsacetyaM
sankalpamAtramalam utsRRijya nirvikalpa

mAshritya nishcayam avApnuhi rArna shAntiM (39)

 

VASISTHA continued:

To illustrate this there is an interesting legend. Kindly listen to it,

A young boy asked his nanny to tell him a story, and the nanny told him the
following story to which the boy listened with great attention:

Once upon a time in a city which did not exist, there were three princes who
were brave and happy. Of them two were unborn and the third had not been conceived. Unfortunately all their relatives died. The princes left their native city to
go elsewhere. Very soon, unable to bear the heat of the sun, they fell into a swoon.
Their feet were burnt by hot sand. The tips of grass pierced them. They reached
the shade of three trees, of which two did not exist and the third had not even been
planted. After resting there for some time and eating the fruits of those trees, they
proceeded further. Continue reading

Science and Vedanta (Part 1)

P1030138_tonemapped-1Part 1 of a 3-part essay by Dr. K. Sadananda, AchArya at Chinmaya Mission, Washington.

Science is Objective

The word science is derived from the root ‘scire’, meaning to know. Hence science really means knowledge which reveals a fact or truth. In Sanskrit, ‘vid’ means to know, and ‘veda’ means knowledge. Combining these two statements we can say that Veda means science. Vedanta means that which reveals the ultimate knowledge or absolute truth. From this, it follows that Vedanta is the ultimate science. This is not a fanatical statement but a statement of fact, as in ‘Light travels at 299,792,458 m / s’. This is not an opinion or belief but just plain fact, whether one believes it or not. We will examine here why Vedanta is the science of absolute.

Epistemologically, the word ‘knowledge’ without a qualifier, cannot be defined. The qualifier objectifies the knowledge as in ‘knowledge of Chemistry’ or ‘knowledge of Physics’, etc. It is always knowledge of something. It can be knowledge of the physical or phenomenal world, or knowledge of some subtle entities such as emotions, thoughts, intellectual concepts, etc. The former can be considered as the knowledge of gross entities that can be known via sense input, while the latter can be called the knowledge of subtle entities and can be known without the need of any sense input, or can be inferred indirectly from the sense input. Continue reading

Topic of the Month – Creation

P1020897_tripled-1

Creation

The ‘original’ topic for discussion! Lots of potential material here. I have a number of interesting extracts to post, as soon as I can get around to scanning them in.

Meanwhile here are a couple of my favorite quotes, which I used in ‘Book of One':

In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and is widely regarded as a bad move. Douglas Adams

In the beginning there was nothing and God said ‘Let there be light’, and there was still nothing but everybody could see it. Dave Thomas (This one especially for budding Buddhists)