[Advaita-l] Self-knowledge

Mahesh Ursekar mahesh.ursekar at gmail.com
Tue Jan 31 13:07:46 CST 2006


Dear sir, if I read you right, I do think you do attach too much importance
to this trifle called the intellect!

Let me illustrate!

You consider love to be part of the manas? I think you are watching too much
Discovery and reading too little Rumi! :-)IMHO, it is like putting the
proverbial cart before the horse! Love commands, the intellect obeys. Why,
then do we say, quite truly, - love is a madness! In madness, where is the
room for the intellect to function? Why does a mother love her ugly son
while the world wonders - "what does she see in him?" Can the intellect even
begin to comprehend this thing called love - it would only be a naive one to
accept this. Love is transcendantal. Love is.

Take faith now. How does one explain it? The intellect is merely a register
to record its presence but it stems from a higher power. How did Nag
Mahasaya (a householder disciple of Sri Ramakrishna) make the ganges flow
out from his garden with nothing but faith? Why do they say - faith can move
mountains and Moses proved it! It lies in the intellect since poor humans
have just that faculty to know things but it is something much much bigger!

Sanjay mentioned intution. I think the same applies. Intution lets the
intellect take a 'firm conviction' if that is what you like to call it
Intution is higher than intellectual understanding. "I know this must be
true", one says without justification or reasoning or in most cases against
reasoning? How?

And last, let us take your erstwhile Jnani. Well, all the fellow (or felli)
can do is say that 'truth' can't be this, can't be that (Neti, Neti) till
s/he reaches a point where there is a flash of "reality" and all falls into
place. S/he cannot really intellectually understand truth anyway!

Please don't misunderstand me by thinking I attach less importance to Jnana
(or else I would not be on this list) but lets not lose sight of the bigger
picture - truth or love is bigger, grander and more inexplicable than any of

Humble pranams, Mahesh

On 1/31/06, Satyan Chidambaran <satyan_c at yahoo.com> wrote:
> namaste shrI Amuthan,
> >> if you call one trying for nirvikalpa samAdhi as a
> >> special experience chaser, then, one who learns
> >> vedAnta is a special knowledge chaser!
> In fact, there is nothing more prudent in advaita than to chase
> the  special knowledge (about the Self) under a qualified Guru via the
> valid  pramAna for gaining the knowledge (ie the sruti). Shouldn't
> every  mumukshu, in advaita vedAnta, strive to chase the special
> knowledge  that will liberate him or her? This is because that knowledge
> alone  first purifies and eventually liberates.
> na hi jnanena sadrsam pavitram iha vidyate (B.G)
> This knowledge, if gained properly, will show that there is nothing to  be
> gained at all and one is already what one seeks to become. What one  is
> looking for is already there in *ALL* experiences, one was simply  mistaken
> about ones identity. One who knows this is a bramhavit.
> In advaita vedAnta, one should rather be a "knowledge seeker" that
> is  able to see the truth spoken by the sruti in *all* experiences
> rather  than an "experience seeker" who sees what one fancies as the truth
> in  only certain experiences and misses it in the rest of the experiences.
> >> for everyone other than a uttamAdhikAri,
> >> nirvikalpaka samAdhi is necessary, though that alone
> >> is not sufficient.
> It is neither necessary nor sufficient for gaining moksha in
> advaita  vedAnta. samAdhi abhyAsa may no doubt help gain antar-mukhatvam
> (inward  orientedness) and vairAgyam which are qualifications for
> gaining  knowledge. However, nirvikalpa samAdhi is not necessary for
> gaining  those qualifications either because they can be cultivated
> through  other means.
> On the other hand, what is both necessary and sufficient for moksha
> is  the j~nAnam gained from the sruti's words and nishtA (abidance) in
> the  j~nAnam through mananam and nidhidyAsanam. One should strive to be
> a  j~nAna nishtA whose understanding of the sruti's vision is
> unshakable  and one who constantly sees through the eyes of the sruti in
> all  experiences. Then, it doesn't matter what the experience is:
> prArabha  will bring whatever it brings. If it brings nirvikalpa samadhi, so
> be  it. If it doesn't, so be it. One is liberated, no matter what
> ones'  external situations are.
> The j~nAna nishtA will experience bramha j~nAna phalam which will  include
> poornatvam, uncaused joy etc, which of course will be  experienced, but they
> are fruits of j~nAnam and not causes of j~nAnam.
> regards,
> --Satyan
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