Vedanta the Solution – Part 54

VEDĀNTA the solution to our fundamental problem by D. Venugopal

Part 54 looks at Ramana Maharshi’s ‘Who am I?’ practice and explains that the ‘I thought’ cannot be removed by self-investigation. It also explains that we do not have to get rid of vAsanA-s in order to gain mokSha.

There is a complete Contents List, to which links are added as each new part appears.

I Am Awareness

An article by Eaden Shantay

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Experience is awareness cast through karma.

Every sensation, emotion and thought is the direct result of past karma (action). In each incarnation we bring forth parabdha karma – that portion of sanchita karma, our total karmic bank account, meant to be experienced, learned from and neutralized in this life.

Think of parabdha karma as images on a film strip, vasanas (impressions) in consciousness left from past action. The light of true self, awareness, then shines through these impressions, creating a three dimensional, five sensory experience called me and my life.

Like any good movie, it’s easy to become hypnotized by the drama and lose touch with what is real. In realizing we are not the projected story but the awareness which animates it, we release the life or death grip we have on moment to moment experience. This is the process of dis-identification or non-attachment the Buddha spoke of.

Imagine the sky with clouds moving through it. The sky is a metaphor for awareness and clouds, the objects of sensation, emotion and thought. In meditation we practice welcoming the clouds, blessing them and then bringing our attention back to the breath. In time, we even let go of the breath and dwell in the space between the clouds – awareness, a reflection of our true nature appearing in the mind. Continue reading

The Ghost of Bharcchu

SarvajnatmanSarvajnatman, a well-reputed advaita Acharya of the 9th-10th century, was the author of samkshepa shArIraka.  As the title indicates, this book is a brief presentation of Sankara’s sUtra bhAshya in four chapters corresponding to the four adhyAya-s of the brahma sUtra-s.

Sarvajnatman sums up the essential nature of brahman in ten words. They are:

nityasuddha, buddha,  mukta, satya,  sUkshmasatvibhuadvitIya and Ananda

(eternal, pure, knowing, free, true, subtle, existent, auspicious, without a second and infinite (or happy)).

advaita teaches that you and brahman are one and the same. You being already brahman, the above ten words, therefore, describe you also. That means you, yourself, are Happiness.  So Happiness should be known to you like you know the back of your hand. You do not have to search for or attain Happiness.

But an enigmatic question arises: Okay, I know that I am already eternally existing, knowing and  ever happy brahman.  How come I don’t I know the Happiness which should be present right here? What ghost of an obstruction would block me from feeling it, from seeing it?

The shAstra replies: Oh, Yea, something like the Ghost of Bharcchu can cripple you from seeing the very things that are right in front of you!

“The Ghost of Bharcchu?  What’s that?,” you ask in wonderment.

Continue reading

Knots and Kinks In The Way Of Knowing The Truth

The Non-dual teaching is quite simple, straightforward and very clear.

The brihadAraNyaka upanishad encapsulates it succinctly:

neha nAnAsti kincana      —     IV – 4- xix    

(No distinctions whatsoever exist here)              

The IshAvAshya upanishad expresses the same in a different way

ishAvAsyamidagm sarvam      —  mantra 1

(All this (universe) is pervaded by the Lord (= brahman))

advaita says that that there is no multiplicity here. Whatever exists is all Oneness. This Oneness does not give scope for a second thing to arise within it. It is so Absolute and Alone. If anyone sees a multiplicity of things, such an appearance to the eye of the beholder is merely an illusion arising out of the ignorant stance taken by him/her.  The word “ignorant” is not used in any pejorative sense. It simply means that the seer has ignored the truth. The upanishad even cautions that one goes from death to death if he misses to see the Oneness. By that the scripture is telling us that suffering and misery are inevitable for one who ignores this plain Truth of Oneness. Continue reading