[Advaita-l] Adviata Manjari- 2

kuntimaddi sadananda kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Fri Dec 5 08:21:26 CST 2003

Thanks Vaidya for reminding me. Advaita Manjari-2 was interjected in
response to some confusing and misinterpreting posts about the jiivan
mukta state by our dvaitin friends. It was a clarification based on my
earlier post in adviatin.  May be for that reason I did not include the
the two adviatin lists. Here we go again for those who are interested in
my understanding. It may be a re-run for advatin list. 

--- "Sundaram, Vaidya (MED)" <Vaidya.Sundaram at med.ge.com> wrote:
> Sada-ji.
>  I saw post 1 on this series and now post 3 - if there was a post two,
> I
> have not seen it on Advaita-L. Just FYI.
> Thanks,
> Vaidya.

Clarification of Advaitic statement ––we have mails posted on the
vAdAvali list that aham brahma asmi meaning  ‘I am Brahman’ which
implies that ‘I am I’ and claiming as that is what Advaita says – It is
obviously a ridiculous interpretation of Advaita. I am not trying to
‘wake-up’ an apparently sleeping person but trying to clear out, if I
can, some of the confusion that is being propagated as a result of wrong
understanding of Advaita. 

Neither I nor Brahman can be objectified to say I am ‘something’.  As
the biblical statement echoes – it is a state of realization and all one
can say if at all is – I am that I am – it is one without a second and
it is one in spite of the second. It is identity not an equation for
normal intellectual analysis since that very intellectually analysis
objectifies ‘I am’.  It is not understanding ‘as a thought’ it is
understanding ‘as a fact’. Hence it is called statement of
self-realization. It is dropping the notions of what think I am in the
recognition of ‘Who That I am really is’ – Hence I am posting a note
that I wrote some time back for advaitin list based on my understanding,
 clarifying what jiivan mukta really implies. I am including it here  as
part of my Advaita Manjari.  One can ignore any references to the
Advaitin posts. 

                          Advatia Manjari-2

          Who is jiivanmukta  or  what is the state of Jiivanmukta? 
                 – One who has liberated while living? 

1. When we are discussing about the state that is beyond our
intellectual comprehension (beyond the mind and intellect), and at the
same time  if we do not want to rest our understanding completely on the
statements of a particular person or persons, we have to resort to 'a
pramaana' or a means of knowledge that is not illogical and at the same
time that which everybody can agree upon including those individuals on
whom  we have our personal trust and whom we think are realized.  Hence
Shaastra becomes a more valid pramaana or valid means of knowledge of
such states. 

2. Who is Jiivan Mukta and what is the state of realization? -
Recognizing that the root cause for bondage is the 'ignorance' - either
ignorance of 'one-self' or 'ignorance of the nature of the Lord'
(vishishhtadvaitic point) depending on how one interprets it, then
realization is removal of that ignorance or clear understanding of 'who
one-self' is or 'what is the nature of the reality'.  From Advaita point
- 'I do not know my self as my-self and take my-self as other than
myself.  I am being 'the subject' the knower I - takes myself the object
that I am aware of as myself - Here ignorance plays as two aspects - one
is taking object is different from subject (for example - this is my
body, my mind, my intellect and this is my world and I can see this
world and the world is different from me and this world is a creation
and creator is different from me since I did not create this world,
etc.) The second is taking the object as the subject - that is this is
my body translates next as  I am the body, mind and/or intellect  - when
I take object as subject and hence limitations of the objects become my
limitations - I suffer the consequence of these limitations and all the
life struggles in terms of 'pravRitti' and 'nivRitti' - trying gain what
I like and get rid of what I dislike - become a means to solve the
self-imposed problem based on my misunderstanding about myself. 

3. Self-realization or state of jivanmukta is then realization of one
self as the 'true self'.  But what is that true self ?  - First that
self is the subject and not an object of any means of knowledge -All
means of knowledge presupposes the existence of the subject 'I'. Hence
all means of knowledge are valid because of the subject hence the self
is beyond any means of knowledge - aprameyam - and it is a self-evident
entity - or self- conscious entity - that is it is chit - and has to be
existent entity since we cannot talk of nonexistent self - there it is
'sat' and since free any limitations since it is pure bliss and hence it
is unlimited or infinite or anantam - therefore one without a second
(since limitations come from the presence of the second).  Hence
knowledge of the self is the knowledge that "aham Brahmaasmi" - 'I am
the Brahman' - or the 'Infinite Consciousness' -a notion of finite
consciousness is illogical since that gives rise to a logical question
of what is there beyond that finite consciousness? - if there is
something then who is conscious of that - If one is conscious of that
then that  'beyond thing' is not really beyond since it is within the
consciousness - hence consciousness has to be infinite and there is
nothing beyond consciousness.  Neither from existence point it is
divisible since even the dividers have to exist. 

4. A Jivanmukta is one who is a mukta  or liberated while body is alive.
One cannot get any liberation if one is finite since he is bound
eternally by that very finiteness, if that finiteness is his intrinsic
nature.  If he is infinte but thinks he is finite, then liberation is
possible when he drops his notion of himself as finite realizes his true
or intrinsic nature.  A finite also cannot become infinite that is also
illogical. Hence liberation itself need to be understood correctly. A
jiivan mukta is one who is liberated while living and liberation is
liberation from all misunderstandings that he is an not an object and is
the very subject in all objectifications - He has understood that his
true nature is 'aham Brahmaasmi' or 'ayam aatma Brahma' - This is
realization as JK puts 'understanding as understanding as a fact' 'not
as a thought'.  Hence'self-realization' - realization of 'who one-self
is' - and that oneself is the - existent - conscious and infinite self
that one is. Then only brahavit brahma eva bhavati has a direct
Krishna declares about this in B.G. Ch 6.

         sarvabhuutastam aatmaanam sarvabhuutaanica aatmani|
	iikshate yogayuktaatmaa sarvatra samadarshaNaH||

'my-self is in all beings and also all being are in myself' - one who
sees or understands such a yogi has  everywhere (at all times and
places) has equanimity or sees the same everywhere – whether it is dog
or brahmana – just as whether it is ring or bangle or bracelet – one
sees oneness of the gold in and through the names and forms.  

Interestingly Krishna reiterates the same message in the very next sloka
even from a Bhakta point - 
	yo mam pasyati sarvatra sarvanca mayi pasyati|
	tasyaaham na praNasyaami sa ca me na praNasyati|| 
he who sees Me everywhere and everything in Me - he can never be away
from Me nor I can be away from him - 

Hence there is no more misunderstanding of oneself - Please note that in
the very understanding of one-self or his-self -there is also a 
simultaneous recognition that there is no other 'self' other than
'one-self' - since the self I am is unlimited and infinite.  This
understanding also includes ' not only I am in all of them but all are
in me - that is they are not different from me.  Hence the world is in
my consciousness - I am not separate from the world and I am in the
world and the world is in me - Just as clay saying I am in all pots and
all pots are in me. Yet the 'naama and ruupa' the superficial entities
which are just projects as well as the consequences of those projections
- that is 'individual notions' - I am a mud pot or I am a honey pot
etc., belong not to me only to the superficial names and forms. 
This is stated by Krishna in Ch. 9 

	mayaatata midam sarvam jagadavyakta muurthinaa|
	mastaani sarva bhuutani na ca aham tesvavastitaH|| 

I pervade this universe in an unmannifested form and all manifestations
are in me but I am not accountable or responsible for the sufferings of
these beings due to their misunderstandings. Those belong to them and
not to me.

Hence one is Jivanmukta when one has not just intellectual but clear
'understanding' of one is and there is no more misunderstanding taking
'I am ' 'this or that'.  That one 'individual' has realized is 'no more'
- he is dissolved.  His true nature that is 'I am Brahman'.  Hence the
correct understanding the 'ego' what was identifying that I am this body
etc. is not more - that ego is replaced by a correct understanding "I am
the totality' or 'aham brahma asmi'.

Since the original 'ego' (based on ones misunderstanding that one is an
object) is completely dissolved - Since he is no more, there is no more
a question of talking about 'him' as an individual.  The correct
question is how does that 'Brahman' operates that 'body or uses that
body' - Krishna gives an elaborate answer in the 'stitapraJNa LakshNa'
which we have discussed elaborately when Madhava presented that part of

Since it is as though That one who was living there in that body is dead
and gone is replaced by the one who has clear understanding that He is
the Brahman.  In reality it is the 'Brahman' the infinite consciousness
uses the readily available equipment (body, mind and intellect - since
the tenant has left) for the benefit of the universe - (either to
fulfill the vaasanas of the samashhTi who need a living teacher for
their realization - sitting a remote cave meditating on the universality
of the self - for the good of all).  Unlike someone pointed out - he
does not really eat - sleep or do things - since there is  no more 'he'.
 - From the total self point - ' akartaaham abhoktaaham ahamevaaham
avyayaH" - I am neither doer nor the enjoyer - I am all by myself and
unlimited and inexhaustible -.  Then who eats and sleeps - Krishna again
answered that – 

	prakrityevaca karmaani kriyamaanaani sarvashaH| 

All actions are done by prakRiti itself - of course under my president
ship - But that prakRiti is only my lower nature -not different from me.
This is further explained beautifully in the two slokas –
 naiva kinchit karomiiti yukto manyeta tatvavit|
 pasyan shRinvan spRushan jighran ashnan svapan svasan||

 pralapan visRijan gRihNan unmishhan nimishhan api|
 indriyaaniidriyaartheshu vartanta iti dhaarayan||

The one who knows the truth knows “I am not the doer of anything’ – and
Krishna gives all ‘–ns’  or ‘–ings’ to illustrate the point starting
from seeing, touching etc. Since I am the doer or kartRitva bhaava is
only a notion due to the error of identification that I am this body – a
confusion of subject-object relation due to adhyaasa.

>From the point of the realized souls It is suffice to understand at this
stage to take that Lord himself manifests in the body of the Jivanmukta
and operates for the benefit of all mankind.  Hence we pray – 

	'Gururbrahma gururvishnuH gururdevo maheswaraH'  - 

essentially the guru is the manifestation of the Lord himself - since He
is nothing but Brahman and he has the true understanding that 'I am

>From these discussions we understand that there is no more 'ego' as we
understand operating in the Jivanmukta and Jivanmukta is the one who has
clear understanding of himself.

5. The definition of clear understanding is that is there is no more
misunderstanding.  If after one has clear understanding if one gets
misunderstanding then that the understanding is not clear!   

	yad gatvaa na nivartante taddhaama paramam mama|

Once one has reached my state - or clear understanding of oneself or
understanding of Brahman (brahma vit bramhaiva bhavati - the one who
knows Brahman becomes Brahman) there is no more return - no more
misunderstanding again. Hence one understands as a fact there is no more
notions left for misunderstanding.

6.   As long as there are equipment's, through the equipments (and 
depending on the limitations of the equipments), jivanmukta can 'see'
and 'act' in the world (with clear understanding that he is not really
the seer but prakRiti itself acts in his presence).  Hence plurality can
still be there but he does not have a notion or misunderstanding that
the plurality is a reality or separate from him! Hence we see that he
sees, acts etc. like a normal beings but he knows truely that he is not
the seer or actor but appropriate seeing and acting is going through
those equipments in His presence).  He may use the words within
vyavahaara not to confuse the rest - I am hungry or I am sleepy etc. but
that is for vyavahaara or convenience for transaction but true
understanding is different - just like we all know the Sun does not
raise or set yet we can operate even with that understanding enjoy
saying that - look at beautiful sun set. - This is the difference
between aatma rati and atma kreeda - Jivanmukta can revel oneself, in
oneself by oneself - atmanyeva atmanaa tushTaH - Yet for a can enjoy his
own glory - aisvaryam - the creation projected as plurality.

To answer the question if he decides to come back - he, as ego-centric
individual, is no more as ego but he is now with an understanding as 'I
am Brahman', hence what is so-called 'coming back' is with clear
understanding that I am Brahman - when he comes back - it is Brahman
that is operating through the equipments - not the old ego that was
there before realization.  Since He is Brahman one without a second -
what is there to be afraid off.  He does not act - but divine actions
come forth from those equipments since He is full of divinity.  All
actions are for the benefit of the entire world since world is Him and
He is the world. He transacts with the world just like a scientist
knowing fully well all things are essentially made up of fundamental
particles – yet garbage treated differently form food.  Just a space is
indivisible and even the dividers are in space, yet for transactional
purposes bath room is different from kitchen.  

Lastly about the gradual versus sudden - Swami Chinmayanandaji used to
tell us a story of Mr. Jones and the cat.  This is also helps to
understand the adhyaasa part and so-called ‘I am I’ part!-   Mr. Jones
somehow got the feeling or understanding that  'he is a rat and not a
man' – Do not ask me when he got this idea and is there a scriptural
pramaaNa for that – it is just like a conscious entity thinks that I am
this unconscious body. If you have that notion, you can tell me how you
got that kind of ridiculous misunderstanding.  If you do not have that
misunderstanding my saashhTanaga praNaams to you. You have realized who
you and should not have misunderstanding of what you are not. If you say
I know very well you are not inert shariira – sthuula, suukma and
kaaraNas shariira-s- and still act as though you are one, then Mr. Jones
story is very relevant. 

Coming back to our friend Mr. Jones, since he has the notion that he is
a rat, he was always trying to avoid any cat nearby and runs away form
one since he is afraid for his safety. (udaramanataram kurute athatasya
bhayam bhavati – a spec of dvaita can cause fear- says scriptures).  His
wife learned about his problem and took him to a psychologist - after
many sittings and repeating reinforcement - 'I am man and I am not a
rat' - he 'understood' that he is a man and not a rat.  After paying the
doctor fees he goes back home but after a hour he came back running to
the doctor gasping for his breath - when confronted by the doctor - Mr.
Jones said - ' I know very well  I am man and I am not a rat'.  Doctor
asked then, what is the problem?  Why did you come back running?’ Mr.
Jones replied -"I am afraid because,  I know that I am a man and not a
rat,  but that cat on the street may not know that I am man and not a
rat" –

‘aham brahmaasmi’ is not I am I or I am this etc it is realization of
ones own intrinsic nature that I am sat-chit-aananda swaruupa. They are
not attributes of I. That is my ‘swaruupa’. 

Understanding  or realization we are talking about is the understanding
as a fact - not any more as a thought - That understanding is complete
and once and for all - That occurs only once and that is the end of all
misunderstandings. When the mind is clear of all misunderstanding then
the self is self-revealed.  Till then,  even as of now for everyone, 
one has glimpses or ‘experience’ of the self, but the misunderstanding
still prevails.  The happiness that one gains during the sensuous
enjoyments is also 'glimpses of the self' - 'vishyaanade paramaanadaH' -
says Vidyaranya in 'Pancadasi'.  Clear understanding of the nature of
reality is what Bhagavan Ramana calls in 'sat darshan' as 'dRiDaiva
nishTa' - firm understanding of the self.  There are no gradations in
the self-realization - but there is gradation is the purification of the
mind - as the mind is getting purified - clearer the screen - the more
light of self -illumination beaming through.  I am that self is total,
complete and firm and occurs only when the 'ego' falls down since it is
Hari Om!

What you have is His gift to you and what you do with what you have is your gift to Him - Swami Chinmayananda.

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