[Advaita-l] Question I

kuntimaddi sadananda kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Mon Oct 18 20:08:26 CDT 2010

Shree Roshan praNAms

Shree Vidyasankar has provided an apt answer to your question. 

Just few more thoughts to ponder about.

Any philosophy has to address three aspects - 1. Who am I? 2. What is this world that I am facing? 2. If this world is a creation; who, where and why creation, and my relation to this world and the creator. 

Whatever I perceive are objects and hence part of the world; and the creator cannot be inside the creation, since everything inside has to be created; and cannot be outside the creation, since outside also has to be created and hence that outside becomes part of creation; leaving creation as infinite. I can have different theories, philosophies and beliefs about the world and the creator. In that sense different religions differ.

Your question pertains to why advaita Vedanta is a welcome question for any seeker. I am quite pleasantly surprised by your inquisitiveness at your age- I wish all the best in your pursuit. 

Only think I point out is, as Vidyasankar did, - I am, as existent conscious entity is not a belief but a fact. That I am existent and conscious entity, I am a subject and not an object, are not beliefs, theories, philosophy, or dogmas, but just plain facts. 

I do not need any scripture or philosophy or religion to tell me that I am existent and conscious. In fact all philosophical positions are validated or invalidated because I am there to begin with to that validation. In fact I am the only one who is existent and conscious entity in the universe since every other thing is object of my consciousness. Advaita addresses- who is that I am - which is beyond any means of knowledge ( I am a knower and not a known) but yet present all the time, since I cannot dismiss myself for I have to be there even to dismiss. 

This enquiry of who am I, is combined with what is this world. For this, advaita uses the analysis of human experiences - the waking, dream and deep-sleep states and uses the all the data to arrive at nature of advaita that is described in the ManDukya Up. in mantra 7. Understanding of that total experience of a human being (in stead of making philosophy on the basis of just partial data of only waking state) is what constitutes advaita Vedanta.

As Shree Vidyasankar emphasized - the secret of the study of Vedanta is to question until one understands - of course with an attitude of learning. Even in learning science also we question and the best scientist is one who asks the right questions and goes after the answers.

With all the best.

Hari Om!

--- On Mon, 10/18/10, Roshan Mandal <roshanmandal at yahoo.com> wrote:

> From: Roshan Mandal <roshanmandal at yahoo.com>
> Subject: [Advaita-l] Question I
> To: advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
> Date: Monday, October 18, 2010, 3:58 PM
> Dear sirs/madams, 
> I am new to the realm of Vedanta. I have studied the
> basics. But as a beginner, 
> I have many questions. One of the most fundamental
> questions that I have is: 
> Why should I believe the Adavaita Vedanta philosophy over
> any other 
> philosophy/religion? What evidence does Advaita have to
> back up its claims? 
> Grateful if you could answer my question as thorougly as
> possible.
> Thank you.
> Sincerely,
> Abhyudaya Mandal
> PS: 
> My background -- I am 16 yrs old. Most of my Vendata
> "knowledge" consists of 
> reading the Gospel of Ramakrishna, and Complete Works of
> Swami Vivekananda, and 
> a few articles on the Divine Life Society site. (My
> knowledge is very limited). 
> However, I have studied Christianity, especially,
> fundamentalist evangelical 
> Christianity for several years formally (My school has
> mandatory Bible courses).
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