Advaita, shUnyavAda etc.

Raghavendra Hebbalalu hs_raghavendra at YAHOO.COM
Fri Jun 23 14:18:06 CDT 2000


I am addressing multiple threads at once here.

> Do you still believe that a person, who tends to be
an Advaithin, there exists something called untruth?

About this one, it is not *believing *, it should be
*realizing*. I hope everybody understands the
difference. All of us see multiplicity. It is what is
behind or cause of all this multiplicity that we are
striving to look into.Believing is not enough. One
should validate one's beliefs. Belief, especially in
this matter, without confirmation in one form or the
other, is, well, nothing more than a belief.

For the fortunate few among us, intellectual
confirmation is not necessary as they have already
gone beyond all this quibbling through their
meditations. But for people like me, it is very
important to inquire intellectually into Truth.
Actually, for really pure jIvas on the verge of
realization, just listening to upanishad.h vakyAs like
'tat.tvamasi' leads to Realization.It is not the case
for the vast majority. I am grateful to Anand,
Vidyasankar and Nanda Chandran for thought provoking
and introspection-promoting discussions. When Nanda
said that Madhyamaka and Advaita say the same thing
through different words, one is forced to check the
actual texts and also to do some inquiry into oneself.
This should be viewed as an impetus for further
self-study. I hope this discussion continues, with
lesser personal remarks.  Personal remarks become part
of any debate. Even when Sri Shankara debated with
Mandana Mishra, there were a few personal jabs thrown
at each other. As long as it does not cause animosity
and degradation of the discussion itself, it is fine.

This list may not be the best place to discuss
individual meditative experiences. By the nature of
such experience itself, it must be kept at the most
personal level and discussed only with one's Guru.
Showing people what experiences one has had,
definitely causes different reactions in different
people. The mind is very strong at mimicking
experiences. If you just listen to one, the mind tries
to reproduce it. Buddhi or the intellect is the best
way to validate some of these experiences. IMHO, the
Internet is a very good medium to have objective
discussions, but not personal ones due to the
impersonal nature of the medium itself. And let me
reiterate this one, it *cannot* substitute a Guru. I
remember reading about Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa
telling one of his disciples, (was it Swami
Vivekananda ?)  to keep his experiences between
himself and his Guru. The reason he gave was that it
could impede/hamper others' spiritual pursuits.

There is one more thing I am concerned about; the
bridging of vyAvahArika and the pAramArthika states
knowingly or unknowingly. IMHO, it is just impossible
as they are mutually exclusive. Doing so is extremely
dangerous. Karma exists for all unrealized jIvas,
whether one likes it or not. True naishkarmya is
actually the Atman Itself.  So karma has to be and
will be done till it automatically drops off. One may
say that he/she does not need to do karma and is
giving it up. But as long as the doer-Ego persists,
karma exists.

About the shrAddha discussion, the following is my 2c.
If one follows Vedic injunctions one has to peform
nitya and naimittika karmas. Whether it causes
chitta-shuddhi or not is left to the performer of the
karma itself.  Doing karma with  'IshwarArpaNa buddhi'
is good. But it does not give a license to drop the
karma. Jaldhar mentioned the other day that there are
shortcuts that one can make use of, if it becomes
really necessary.


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