Atma Vichara.

Gregory Goode goode at DPW.COM
Mon Jul 28 14:46:58 CDT 1997

At 01:38 PM 7/28/97 -0500, Vaidya N. Sundaram wrote:

>As some mebers have pointed out, it is quite mystifying how Shiva can be
>the Creator, and be action less at the same time. With regard to this I
>would like to brielfy quote what the Paramaacharya of Kanchi H H
>Chandrasekareendra saraswati said in regard to God being Nirgunaathipathi
>(devoid of attributes) as well as being Sargunaathipathi (endowed with ALL
>the attributes). At first sight, (said HH) they seem contradictory.  But a
>deeper pondering leads to to the Truth, being, both are true at the same


The analogy with light is a good one, and helps me to understand in the case
of Shiva.

> In light of the above example given by H H, could a similar analogy not
>be applied to Brahman being action less, yet being the endowed with
>action and creating the Universe ?

But I'm not sure how well it will carry over to the case of Brahman
since Brahman isn't usually held to be the creator in the same way as Shiva.
The appearances we see, maya, etc. are not created, since they are not
really existents.  There are no objects that were ever created.  All
phenomenality is illusion.

>Where do we
>start to unravel the mystery ? Would it be better to start with the
>attributeless Brahman and start with the hypothesis that we are That and
>from there try to ask ourselves wherefrom and how does creation start.  (I
>would call it hypothesis as, as long as we have not Realised It, it
>remains a hypothesis).
> Or would it be better to start from the observed manisfestation, and try
>to piece it together in the hope of finally obtaining/achieving
>attributelessness. ?
> Or is there a third (or more) approach(s) that would make it simpler.
>Where does atma Vichara (questioning Who am I?) fit in this regard ?

Either way is a fruitful way of inquiry.  I think atma Vichara fits your
second choice, starting with observed manifestation, since you trace the
source of the manifestation, and trace to whom it occurs.

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list