the Nature of realization (please ignore previous post)

f. maiello egodust at DIGITAL.NET
Mon Apr 27 17:44:38 CDT 1998

sadananda wrote:

> The question of who realizes - can be simply answered as - the one who is
> asking the question - Now who is asking the question? The one who
> identifies that I am the questioner that chaitanya (conscious entity) vastu
> who is currently identifying himself with the limited mind realizes that he
> is no more limited although the particular mind that he has been
> identifying continues to be limited.

I concur with this entire post, except for the issue of "who realizes?"
This may be a semantic gap in understanding, so let it be clear that
the word "realize" is being translated as "jnana."  In this sense, the
jiva can only recognize what is ajnana.  The idea that there is a positive
shift in awareness within the jiva itself is one of the most misleading
assumptions being made.  The cup cannot contain the water of the ocean.
The jiva can only realize what it is *not*!  When it completes this task,
without the attending doubts in the Heart, it itself effectively disappears--
viz. as a separate reality *unto itself*.  It gets thereby re-absorbed into
its source.  Result: nothing can be said about what transpires because all
ideas--representing the causal group of upadhis--are necessarily limited;
they can never contain or embrace [what can only be referred to as]
their "causeless cause."  Thus, virtually every conceivable idea that
can be formulated, becomes effectively neutralized in paramarthika.

> I am conscious entity is a fact.  I am an existence entity is a fact.
> Conscious entity is the existence entity is also a fact - since there
> cannot be non-existent conscious entity.  I am also ananda or happiness
> since happiness that I get from by fulfilling desires is not from the
> objects but from myself who is momentarily free from the mind that is
> wanting.  Thus I am sat chit ananda - is a fact.- sat is chit and sat chit
> is ananda. These are not attributes but the very lakshaNas or definitions
> that reveal my true nature.

Quite so.  Yet the jiva is incapable of embracing its source [as sat
chit ananda].  Its core, although atman (being non-different from brahman),
is not the jiva or ego itself which, by definition, is merely a spacio-temporal

> ..............Once the actor realizes that he is an actor, there is no
> more misunderstanding, he can continue to play the role and in fact play
> better since the suffering in the scenes is not real but is only apparent.

Yes!  This is the scope of 'realization" for the jiva--not in the form of an
affirmation [of jnana], but rather in the form of a negation: i.e. that the
ego is *not* the real doer, but only an actor unfolding the script of Isvara.

...which is implied/supported by the following:

>  Let me clarify based on my understanding!  Jeevanmukta - is the liberation
>  from the notion that I am a Jeeva  or an individual. It is mukti,
>  liberation, from that notion of Jeeva (hood) - while life is still
>  pulsating in the body.

This to me suggests a semantical factor in what amounts to an apparent
difference of opinion.


>From  Mon Apr 27 19:22:43 1998
Message-Id: <MON.27.APR.1998.192243.0400.>
Date: Mon, 27 Apr 1998 19:22:43 -0400
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To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
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From: Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian <ramakris at EROLS.COM>
Subject: Re: the Nature of realization
Comments: To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
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Gummuluru Murthy wrote:

> Lack of second-guessing: while previously there is a doubt whether a
> right decision is made ("I should have done the other way" feeling),
> such feeling would no longer be there. The feeling "Everything is
> unfolding the way it should" is the only feeling left. There is no
> scope of second-guessing at all. Hence, the person will be
> ever-content. Shri ShankarAchArya expresses this in a more

This is from the point of view of the unrealized. There is no duality
here whatsoever, says the bR^ihadAraNyaka Up. In the aporaxAnubhUti,
shrI sha.nkara strongly refutes that GYAni has any prArabdha or that he
"feels" anything whatsoever. There is no question of being "content" or
"not content" when there is no duality.


>From  Mon Apr 27 20:34:02 1998
Message-Id: <MON.27.APR.1998.203402.0400.>
Date: Mon, 27 Apr 1998 20:34:02 -0400
Reply-To: ramakris at
To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
        <ADVAITA-L at TAMU.EDU>
From: Ramakrishnan Balasubramanian <ramakris at EROLS.COM>
Subject: Re: Selections from the ShAkta upaniShads -1 (bahvR^icha)
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Chandran, Nanda (NBC) wrote:

> My final question would be, "How can the bridge be build between the
> Illusory Vyavaharika Jiva and the Real Paramartika Atman?".
> Probably by clearly defining the Vyavaharika and the Paramartika levels.
> Probably Rama can give us a hand here! :-)

I was planning to post on this later. Let me try to give a quick answer
and let's see how it goes. We should first understand why we have a
quantity called avidyA postulated and what the implications are.

First pl. refer to either Sh or Su's works. In that it is shown by means
of the method of anvaya and vyatireka along with shruti that the
perceived objects (this includes the world, mind, ego etc) cannot be
"true" and note that the sight of the seer is unbroken (BrihadAraNyaka
Up). Thus the theory of sAxI, which postulates an empirical quantity
called avidyA _alone_ can satisfactorily explain the situation. Su notes
that that the theory of sAxI itself is finally "false" (since sAxI
implies objects to be witnessed), but as far as empirical existence goes
this is the best explanation. The same methodology can be found in shrI
gauDapAda's work.

Now, note the following fact. By the theory, due to avidyA the ego gets
it's existence (by the _reflection_ of the self). But unless the ego is
present, the theory of avidyA would not be postulated as the "best"
explanation. In a causal chain like this the first cause cannot be
determined. So the question of who has the avidyA is meaningless. That's
why shrI gauDapAda says that the Atman himself _seems_ to be deluded
(since the locus of avidyA is the Atman). Actually this is only a
"minor" problem. The more fundamental problem with the question is that
it is valid ONLY if avidyA is _real_. It is not, it's neither real nor
unreal, and actually false in the pAramArthika sense. Of course, Sh does
not call avidyA anirvachanIyam explictly, but it's pretty much implied.
Sh. asks the same question you did and avoids answering the question!
Obviously, not because he didn't know the answer! It is precisely
because of this: to answer it would mean admitting that avidyA is
_real_. It is _NOT_. We are used to thinking in black and white terms.
avidyA escapes such characterizations, and to reiterate: the question is
meaningless. It's like seeing a tree and seed in the dream and asking
after waking up, did the seed come from the tree (in the dream) or the
tree from a seed (in the dream)?!! This is not an exact analogy for
sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi vAda, however for followers of dR^ishhTi-sR^ishhTi
vAda, the analogy is very tight. Think about it.

Tha bhAmatI school avoids this problem by making the Ashraya (locus) of
avidyA as the jIva. They do defend this theory quite well. Then it is
the jIva which has the avidyA. However prakAshAnanda gives very powerful
arguments against them in his vedAnta-siddhAnta muktAvali, which seem
quite unanswerable, at least I couldn't come up with any answers.
Perhaps someone here can defend the bhAmatI from prakAshAnanda.

I'll try to post something on the advaita theory of perceptions, as per
both sR^ishhTi-dR^ishhTi and the "inverse" vAda later. This will show
what advaita means by perception, realization etc. It may also help in
this particular doubt.

There is no point in discussing what the "qualities" of pAramArthika
are. yato vAcho nivartante, aprApya manasA saha, says shruti. The best
way is neti, neti.


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