Buddhism etc.

Sundararaman Subrahmanian svs_shankara at HOTMAIL.COM
Wed May 24 22:03:30 CDT 2000

Nanda Chandran wrote:

It's knowledge of the Self - Atma jnAnam - which effects liberation. All one
has to do is search for one's Self. The process is quite straightforward -
anything that you feel/sense/perceive is the object. That which
feels/senses/perceives is the subject. Search inwards - meditate and find
that subject which is the changeless Atman. To do this it is not necessary
to understand the subtle dialectic and speculation of Advaita.

SVS:  ( I am asking these questions because you had in your earlier mails
spoken critically of people quoting without understanding or experiencing
themselves.  My understanding currently seems to be different from yours. )

I am not a seer.  I am asking these questions only to know more clearly.
You said in your mail: "knowledge of the Self".  This statement somehow
gives me an impression that the Self is something different that has to be
known.  In which case the knower has to be different from the Self to know
it.  If the knower is different from the Self then the Self cannot be the
Absolute which Vedanta avers.  Would you like to change the statement to
mean "Self-Consciousness is liberation" instead of  "It's knowledge of the
Self - Atma jnAnam - which effects liberation."

Again you wrote: "Search inwards - meditate and find that subject"
Who is the one who has to search inwards ?  Who is the one who wants to or
finds the subject.  Is that(he) not the pursuit of the search ?  The
searcher is the goal of the search.  In other words how can one search
oneself ?  What I am driving at is that one cannot search and find Atman at
all.  It(We) has to be conscious of itself(ourselves) that is all.

You also said:
But again as said before learning the theory cannot effect liberation. It
can only prevent the sAdhaka going astray, put him on the right path and
with Atma vichAra can lead to liberation.
SVS: Can Atma Vichara lead to liberation ? Or does it show that you are
already liberated ?  Does Atma Vichara show you the rope or does Atma
Vichara just remove the snake (allusion to the Vedantic metaphor of the rope
and the snake).  Is it not enough for one to realize that there is no snake
and the rope would stand exposed.  I guess, we don't have to attain
liberation, but just know that we were never bound.  I feel when we reach
that stage even attempts at realization will seem like a dream.

"sada me samatvam na mukthir na bandhaha" - Atmashatakam - Shankara.

A small anecdote from the life of Ramana Maharshi:  A devotee approaches him
and asks him "Master, how can I get realization ?".  To which the Master
replies "If you are in Chennai and ask me how to come to Ramana Ashram, I
can tell you the way.  But you are already in Ramana Ashram, what way do I
need to tell you.  You just have to know that you are already in Ramana

[Please don't get angry, I see in your mails that you are severe with
mediocrities like me.  Instead I request you to teach me].

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bhava shankara deshikame sharaNam

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