[Advaita-l] The Advaita Tradition of Shankara

subhanu saxena subhanu at hotmail.com
Wed Dec 14 16:35:18 CST 2011

Sri Bhaskar wrote:
Pls. clarify whether his 'association' with upAdhi 
(antaHkaraNa/mind) is avidyA or 'operation/utilization' of his antaHkaraNa 
is avidyA?? 

Namaste, and as you may guess my answer will frustrate you, as it is posed from the standpoint of an ignorant observer regarding notions of mind, seeing , hearing etc that have no meaning for a jnani (Sri Ramana Maharshi makes this point repeatedly in his "Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi"-see talks 513, 256 as examples). Liberation as conceived by us only makes sense from the standpoint of ignorance. Remembering we only figuratively can speak of the person who is released and who is in bondage, we say that the jnani ever abides in unbroken awareness of Self as the only reality , even though we may describe him/her as seeing, talking, thinking  "as it were" etc. You will remember Karika III.32 amanastAm tadA yAti, how the mind becomes no-mind for a jnani. 
If you have access to them I would recommend you read Sri Ramana Maharshi's talks 578 and 610 where, full of compassion, he tersely warns the questioners away from asking such questions as the above, and whether the jnani is liable to pain etc. Just two excerpts:
578: "Their questions are endless. Why worry oneself in so many ways? Does liberation consist in knowing these? 
Therefore I say to them 'Leave Liberation alone. Is there bondage? Know this. See yourself first and foremost' "
610: "Take care of your self and the Brahma-jnani will take care of Himself. If you know your true nature you will understand the state of Brahma-jnana. It is futile to explain it now. Because you think that you see a jnani before you and you identify him with a body just as you have identified yourself with yours, you also think that he feels pains and pleasures like yourself".
I hope the above is helpful not in a way to directly answer your question but to throw you into a different awareness of the issue you seek to understand. Take care of your own Atma-vichara, as enquiring into the state of a jnani will not aid your own liberation.

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