Grace of God

Frank Maiello egodust at DIGITAL.NET
Fri Jan 9 10:36:13 CST 1998

Miguel Angel wrote:
> In this line of debate, two elements have come up: Personal God and God's
> Grace.
> Sorry, but I just don^Òt understand what ^ÓPersonal God^Ô might mean. If by
> that, you mean something like Zeus, Isis, Ala, Jahveh, etc., it^Òs OK, but I
> can^Òt believe in that. The only thing I can believe in is the
> One-without-two, the One without any limitations, without any form or shape
> or actions or volition or any imaginable thing that could be found in a
> dictionary. I dislike the very concept of ^Óperson^Ô which comes from the
> Latin persona, the masks that classic actors used to wear on stage. Person
> means a role, a part in a play, a social image. I think there can^Òt be
> persons but in a web of social relationships. The One is not a member of
> any society, or of anything whatsoever. He can^Òt have any attibutes of any
> kind. Ever. Not even in Saguna. There can^Òt be two eras in God, first
> Nirguna then Saguna. He is always Now. Here. The One. There is nothing
> else.
> Even this mail is an illusion appearing in His consciousness.

Sankara's Tripura Formula tells us that saguna *is* nirguna so long as
perceived not as something unto itself.  As you indicated, "Even this mail
is an illusion appearing in His consciousness."  (Incidentally, it's more
accurate to say 'Its' rather than 'His,' since nirguna is attributeless.)

> About God^Òs Grace. That^Òs something I^Òve never understood. That sounds to
> me terribly dualistic. I don^Ò t mean that it is so, don't feel offended.
> Nothing I say should be
> so. I am saying nonsense all the time. It just seems to me so. If I am
> nothing, absolutely nothing apart from That, how could I (That) grant me
> Grace? Also all the talk about purifying one^Òs mind seems to me harder and
> harder to understand. Who is to purify what? I am nothing. I just appear to
> be something. And that is ^Ómy^Ô only and very great pain: what I appear to
> be. What a terrible pain!

Yes, the [dualistic] concept of grace is a temporal strategy, as are the
concepts of egoic 'free will' or its applied process of 'mind purification,'
which are theoretically used by the jiva who believes he's a jiva!  Jnana
shatters this charade.

> This morning I was walking on the street. I thought: I see many people
> around, most of them I don^Òt know. Some appear and then disappear to let
> others appear instead. There is only one there who I know all
> the time, Miguel Angel. My God, what I would give to lose sight of him for
> ever! Why am I to put up with this bore, to carry this heavy load so long?
> If I am not him, why this constant nightmare, this stupid person appearing
> in my consciousness again and again? How  to get rid of him for good? Where
> to hide and become invisible to him? Knowing that he is nothing, just a
> ghost, and I the only Reality doesn^Òt help, he keeps calling uninvited.
> Anyone knows the way to dodge him for ever short of killing him?
> Ready to pay a handsome reward.

By the *perseverence* of atmavichara.  As Jack Kerouac says, "Walking on
water wasn't built in a day."

There's ever only one Self among us.

OM shaanthi shaanthi shaantiH.


"There are no answers
there are no questions."

>From  Fri Jan  9 13:16:52 1998
Message-Id: <FRI.9.JAN.1998.131652.0500.>
Date: Fri, 9 Jan 1998 13:16:52 -0500
Reply-To: chandran at
To: "Advaita (non-duality) with reverence" <ADVAITA-L at TAMU.EDU>
From: Ram Chandran <chandran at TIDALWAVE.NET>
Organization: none
Subject: Re: Bhagavad kr^pa (grace of God)
Comments: To: Advaita List <advaita-l at>
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Reply to the Posting of Shri Sadanand and Shri Gummuluru Murthy

Namaskar Sadanand and Gummuluru:

Thanks for your excellent replies to my earlier posting on the nature of
Brahman.  I am not surprised with your questions and explanations! The
purpose of my exercise was to illustrate that intellectual analysis and
framework can not answer the question on the nature of Brahman.
Intellectual analysis either starts with questionable assumptions and/or
questionable conclusions. This is an expression of intellectual

But we don't want to be in a pathless land with no directions for
leading a spiritual life.  The fundamental differences among the
concepts enunciated by the various schools of Vedanta supported by the
masters including Sankara, Ramanujar and Madhawacharya should not deter
us from attempting to understand the philosophy from the Upanishads. Any
attempt to sort out these differences at an intellectual level can
beocme an exercise without results. It is desirable, rather, to follow
the Advaita Philosophy (or others) with single-minded faith and try to
understand Sankara's peception of what the Upanishds say. With our life
time that is the only possible thing for us to do. I fully agree that
answers to spiritual questions can be realized only with personal

Let me thank both of you for your time and thoughtful clarifications of
my exercise.

With my regards,

Ram Chandran
Burke, VA.

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