Still Confusion regarding Shankara’s

egodust egodust at DIGITAL.NET
Tue Jan 28 16:08:16 CST 1997

Cameron Reilly wrote:
> At 17:12 27/01/97 -0800, Vidyasankar wrote:
> >On Sun, 26 Jan 1997, Cameron Reilly wrote:
> >
> >>
> >> I disagree. In advaita, the pot neither IS devoid of objective reality, nor
> >> is it NOT devoid of objective reality. Both are merely matters of
> >> perspective. Seen from the perspective of the Absolute, the pot does not
> >> exist as an object. It is one with Brahman. Seen from the perspective of
> >> the subjective split-mind, the pot certainly does exist, as does the head
> >> which you hit it against. Both perspectives are absolutely correct, if
> >                            ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> >> understood as flip sides to the coin of the Infinite.
> >  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> >
> >Absolutely correct? And as flip sides to the Infinite? That is more like
> >bheda-abheda or dvaita-advaita than like advaita. There have been
> >philosophers who take such a position, namely Bhaskara and Nimbarka. What
> >differentiates advaita from this position is that the second view is held
> >to be inferior to the first, and not as equivalently valid.
> Inferior? Are you saying that advaita recognises one 'mental concept' to be
> of a higher order than another 'mental concept'?
> Certainly the word 'advaita' itself means 'non-duality', does it not? Not
> two.
> This inability to see beyond the pairs of opposites is due to a fixation
> with dualism. The 'one-ness' of things must first be apperceived before the
> words of the Masters will become clear.

Although I tend to side with Vidyasankar's classical advaitic stance,
I can also understand Cameron's novel attempt to absorb within it the
differential view of dvaita.  However, the problem is that such debate
has the tendency to be self-perpetuating, resolving in a stalemate.

More than this, the real stigma is how philosophical paradigms manage
to get center stage, causing us to lose sight of the crux of our whole
metaphysical purpose.  Being what?  Allow me to digress for a minute:

The mechanism for apprehending Existence (viz. the nirguna and saguna
aspects of brahman) by nature involves an unavoidably dualistic
activity.  The fundamental setup inherent in the act of perception
*necessitates* a subject and object.  And the outcome is an inevitable
peering into the infinity of two mirrors reflecting eachother.  This
is why ultimately the concept of a witness is itself delusionary.  The
seer, the seen and the act of seeing are eventually recognized to be a
contrivance.  (And no amount of logic can deliver such realization.)

The only way to surmount this is to surrender the desire itself to
behold as well as the compulsion to resolve the ever-receding mystery
(lila) created by the instantaneously endless Mind-modifications of
saguna brahman.  Otherwise we're chasing after our own shadow.

Advaita is a means of releasing our consciousness from the traps of
the mind.  When the mission is accomplished it's discarded--no less
than the stick that's used to stir the pyre gets finally tossed in.

(Which brings us to our 'metaphysical purpose'): Such release is
tantamount to realizing the noumenal essence of pure Consciousness.
That substratum Self is beyond all systems of logic and philosophy,
which are seen as only strategies for neutralizing the splintered,
chaotic contractions of Mind [manifesting as world awareness].

Still, all of this is Brahman.  The relative contractions as well as
their source.  The field-strategy of advaita is to relax the habitual
conceptual/perceptual focus on the world of Particulars...eventually
allowing the core of the Self (satchidananda) to effortlessly,
automatically shine in its effulgence.  This is the Natural State.

The trick is not getting lured into the glamour of relativity.  We're
told the vasanas are neutralized in two ways: 1) via the practice of
self-enquiry or 2) by releasing the jiva-idea.  And, depending on the
unique developmental dynamic of the wayward personality (jiva), the
method required can range from simple to complex.  It's destination,
however, is utterly beyond simple/complex, as it is beyond *all*
polarities, including good/evil, love/hate, and even dvaita/advaita.
(This is why Buddha employed the subterfuge of remaining non-committal
in the face of any ideas or descriptions of the nature of Reality,
including the concept of Reality itself {which is equally qualitatively
expressed in the radical advaitic doctrine of ajaata}.  If this is
misconstrued by some jnanis (e.g. Gaudapada evidently not privy to
the salient points of Buddha's teaching apparently due to prevailing
sectarian/demographic misconceptions.)

In the last analysis--as was earlier pointed out in the List--the most
accurate transmission of the turiya sthiti can only come through Silence.

Hari OM.


Frank Maiello
"Who am I apart from Thee?"



Frank Maiello
"Who am I apart from Thee?"

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