[Advaita-l] Re: source of mAyA?

Aditya Varun Chadha adichad at gmail.com
Sat Apr 1 09:35:50 CST 2006

I think that mAyA, the illusion of duality itself, is witness to the
profound simplicity of brahman, the Oneness. I think a prerequisite to
brahman-consciousness is being conscious of the richness of the
illusion itself. To feel Oneness, one has to first understand the
existence of the illusion of many-ness. I was saying previously that
upon realization some mAyA gets destroyed. I think I was wrong. It is
only through mAyA that we reach the beyond-mAyA. There is no shortcut
to the process.

The temporary nature of things can be known and felt through observing
them directly. Thus by observing mAyA we observe its internal
temporality. But mAyA as a whole itself may not be a "temporary"
phenomenon. It seems that brahman consciousness is simply the highest
level of consciousness. In it, what we call mAyA does not "vanish" or
get "annhilated", one simply comes to know the underlying substratum
of mAyA, which is brahman. mAyA is said to be unreal because it is
simply not the final substrate. There is a monist substrate that
inherently implies the temporality of any event in mAyA.

For example, observing that the bright side of the moon is of
different shapes when observed by us at different times is not FALSE
per se. It is just a limited perspective. When we come to realize the
mechanics of planetary motion, we realize the underlying principle
(substrate) of the mAyA of the shape-changing moon. So to observe and
realize that our current perspective is limited, we have to observe
and correct our perception itself. This is the basic principle behind
j~nAna yoga, as well as the scientific method.

I think that although in the "final leap" it is the mind that is
destroyed (because that is the final "thing" whose substratum has to
be known), the mind is an indispensible tool in reaching the edge of
the cliff. When j~nAna yoga is finally applied to the instrument of
j~nAna yoga itself, the instrument is destroyed and the j~nAna alone
is left. But to get the mind to destroy itself we have to hone the
mind to learn to destroy other "limited perspectives". When the mind
is practiced enough, then it is inevitable, the mind because of its
conscience, has to apply its own method of j~nAna on itself.

While I agree that our thoughts CAN lead us astray, I think without
the discipline of observing our thoughts and channelling them, finding
their underlying substratum and their own temporality is extremely
hard if not impossible.

On 4/1/06, Ger Koekkoek <gerkoekkoek at wanadoo.nl> wrote:
> A greet to all who will read this,
> Perhaps thinking about Maya has the goal to sea as sharp as possible that,
> when it comes to the heart of the matter, to 'what is', the mind has to
> become silent for the mind itself creates duality, the duality between your
> way of thinking and its object. Thinking about Maya, which is an
> ununderstandable mystery, can clear up and empty a lot of subtle corners in
> your mind that otherwise would stay active in the background, and thereby
> would create subtle but hard borders in your consciousness. The more the
> mind is open for the mystery and is only in an alert and listening mood, the
> easier it will be to turn your attention inwards to its own source.
> It can be very helpful to realize that also Gods, or God, and also heaven
> are still existing in Maya.
> In that way we can realize that that Gods and heaven exits like trees and
> mountains exits, which I think is very important for de world and society,
> for the harmony of it, and at the same time go even beyond God and heaven,
> seeking for the Supreme Truth when you have the capacity to do so.
> And this possibility, as far as I know, exists only in the Indian
> philosophy, in the subtle, beyond there selves pointing ideas around Maya.
> In the medieval scholastic  philosophy of Christianity they also had the
> goal to come as sharp as possible to the mystery in the heart of everything,
> but once you were there you supposed to find the bible and the almighty God.
> The creator God always stayed bigger as the mystical melting together with
> your own heart, and thereby the western holy men never came to that complete
> enlightment that a few of your saints retrieved.
> Therefore, to think about Maya can be very important, but at a certain point
> you have to be alert for the mistake that this thinking in itself creates
> its own never ending circle. That is one of the dreams with which Maya can
> hold you asleep.
> I hope in India you will keep this tradition alive in a proper way. In the
> west it is very difficult to overcome some romantic illusions about India,
> or people think far to quick they understand all of it and become arrogant,
> which is the opposite of what has to happen.
> Therefore I wrote this with respect,  hoping to point out a bit that you
> have a pearl in the contents of your tradition by the word 'Maya'.
> With greetings,
> Ger
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Amuthan" <aparyap at yahoo.co.in>
> To: "A discussion group for Advaita Vedanta"
> <advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org>
> Sent: Tuesday, March 28, 2006 10:52 AM
> Subject: Re: [Advaita-l] Re: source of mAyA?
> > namo nArAyaNAya!
> >
> > dear shrI vidyAsha~Nkar sundareshan,
> >
> > --- Vidyasankar Sundaresan
> > <svidyasankar_at_hotmail.com> wrote:
> >>
> >> [...] In other words,
> >> brahman can be said to create the universe through
> >> the instrumentality of
> >> mAyA, and only brahman can be the locus of mAyA.
> >>
> >
> > in the first place, is it necessary to ponder about
> > the locus of mAyA? there is absolutely no basis to
> > suppose that mAyA should have a locus.
> >
> > (and Aditya, i guess asking for a source of mAyA is
> > again meaningless since there is no reason to suppose
> > that such a cause exists.)
> >
> > within the scope of advaita vedAnta, we can never
> > possibly know if mAyA has a source or if it has a
> > locus. hence, any attempt to rationalize mAyA is bound
> > to be futile. mAyA is unintelligble and there it
> > stops.
> >
> > --- Vidyasankar Sundaresan
> > <svidyasankar_at_hotmail.com> wrote:
> >>
> >> [...] This question is equivalent
> >> to asking, "why does
> >> the universe exist?" In advaita, the short answer
> >> has always been, "lIlA" or
> >> "svabhAva" - e.g. devasyaisha svabhAvaH -
> >> gauDapAda's kArikas.
> >>
> >
> > yes, but this is also a form of running away from the
> > problem. i do agree that no system of philosophy has
> > satisfactorily dealt with the 'why' question. this
> > being the case, there is nothing wrong in plainly
> > stating that we are running away from the problem.
> >
> > going by occam's razor, it seems that the
> > vishiShTAdvaitin is better placed at least when it
> > comes to the issue of mAyA, but this is my personal
> > opinion :)
> >
> > vAsudevaH sarvaM,
> > aparyAptAmRtaH.
> >
> >
> >
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Aditya Varun Chadha
adichad AT gmail.com
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