[Advaita-l] A Perspective -24

Anbu sivam2 anbesivam2 at gmail.com
Fri Mar 19 11:42:47 CDT 2010

"One is mechanically receiving the message from a teacher."

The teacher in our parlance is the Guru.  I suspect the teacher referred to
above is the Mahavaakya which in my humble opinion is not correct.

In the 10th man story the stranger who points out the 10th man is the Guru.
If the stranger who points out the 10th man is not part of the story then
there would never be a story at all just as if it was not for Seetha goading
Rama to go in search of the golden deer about which he had the conviction
that no such golden deer ever existed.  That is if Rama did not leave Seetha
then Ravana would not have taken her away and so Rama would have completed
his exile and returned to Ayodhya to claim his kingship.  No one would be
interested in such a bland story.

We have to discern which is the vital part of the story.

In fact the story of the 10th man stresses the unquestionable need for the
Guru without whose help the 10th man could never have been found.

The appearance of the Guru is predestined as everything else in this

True faith is in Bhagavan only and in surrendering at His holy feet.  This
is the truest Satsangam.  This will enable one to disengage one's desires
and do nishkaamakarmam.  This is nirmOhathwam.  What happens next is a
foregone conclusion and there is actually no role for the jeeva or his
mind.  They are on the wane.  During this time they know all the bhOthams
without efforts and they too disappear along with jeevahood and his
paraphernalia called the BMI.


On Fri, Mar 19, 2010 at 11:44 AM, Kuntimaddi Sadananda <
ksadananda108 at gmail.com> wrote:

> *Obstacles for Spiritual Knowledge – 3.*
> We are discussing the obstacles to our spiritual progress. Krishna says in
> Gita- 4th chapter – sloka 40 that there are three main obstacles for
> spiritual progress: - 1. avidya (ignorance) 2. ashraddha (lack of faith) 3.
> samshaya (doubts about the goal and the means). Shraddha or faith is the
> most essential for knowledge as Krishna says shraddhaavan labhate jnaanam.
> The major obstacle for spiritual knowledge is therefore the lack of
> shraddhaa that Krishna points out again and again. We discussed in the last
> post that mahaavaakyas are not descriptive type but introductory type in
> the
> sense that as in any introduction, it introduces all about who I am that is
> directly present all the time. Still the knowledge does not take place
> immediately for many because of the lack of faith in the pramANa or in the
> Vedanta mahaavaakyam that shows the identity of the self and the universal
> self.  This is discussed below taking the 10th man example where the
> knowledge is also direct and immediate, since the words are also of
> introductory type. That is, the missing 10th is directly and immediately
> present, when the teacher says – you are the 10th man – tat tvam asi.
> *Lack of Shraddhaa that I am the missing 10th man*:  In the 10th man story,
> the seeker himself is the sought. As long as the seeker and the sought are
> one and the same, any amount of seeking will be a failure since in the very
> seeking, one has already resolved that the sought is not there where the
> seeker is. This very conclusion that the 10th man is not here and is lost
> hinders the discovery of the 10th man, since one is looking outward for the
> missing 10th man. 10th man is neither inside the seeker nor outside the
> seeker – He is the very seeker himself. Discovery of the 10th man is
> hindered because of the following reasons
> 1. One is mechanically receiving the message from a teacher. His mind is
> not
> abiding in the knowledge given by the teaching that you are the 10th man
> that you are seeking. In this case the seeker is busily absorbed in
> searching for the 10th man outside, thinking that he must be somewhere
> out-there.  That very conclusion will hinder the discovery of the 10th man.
> He has preconceived notions about the missing 10th man, that he is not
> anywhere around here, but somewhere out there outside the range of one’s
> vision, for if he is inside the range of vision, he would have seen
> the 10thman.
>  The seeker is not paying attention to the teaching because his mind is
> preoccupied in looking for the 10th man outside as an entity different from
> himself. In addition, he is very much engulfed in sorrow for not finding
> the
> 10th man, and concluding that he is lost. Thus, he is busy objectifying the
> 10th man and trying to locate him somewhere. His very desire to locate the
> 10th man out in front as recognizable entity separate from the nine that he
> is seeing right now, prevents him to see himself as the 10th man.
> Similarly in the case of the self-knowledge one is busily engaged in what
> Swami Paramarthanandji calls it as PORT – Possessions, Obligations,
> Relations and Transactions or busy with the five-fold anaatma - profession,
> family, body, mind and intellect – the five anaatmas that one cannot but
> encounters during day to day transactions. Hence Krishna says- asaktiH
> anabhiShvangaH putradaara gRihaadiShu| - for the knowledge to take place
> the
> mind should be free from any longing attachments towards the sense-objects,
> towards those on whom one depends, and those who depend on the one.  That
> is
> to get rid of all the attachments that result in raaga and dweShas or likes
> and dislikes or those that give pleasure and pain – shukam and duHkham –
> that is what Krishnas says – dvandvaas - the experiential dualities.
>  Krishna
> gives examples - hot and cold (seetam and uShNam) at the body level,
> pleasure and pain (sukham and duHkham) at mind level and praise and insult
> (maanam and upamaanaama) at the intellect level. Because these distract the
> mind, they contribute to the lack of shraddhaa or faith in the teaching of
> mahaavaakya. At the BMI level they are difficult to avoid. At the same time
> one should be vigilant not to get carried away by them. Hence scripture
> says
> it is a razor-edge path – kshurasya dhaaraa.  Krishna says – aagamaa
> paayino
> anityaaH, tan tithikshava bhaarata| - they come and go. Therefore they are
> impermanent and have only temporal validity. One has to forbear them, and
> keep the mind not to get carried away by those temporary inconveniences. No
> one can avoid them, since praarabda brings in what is destined – that
> includes all dvandvaas or all ups and downs.  One has to develop an
> attitude
> of karma yoga and prasaada bhuddi or acceptance without any reaction, which
> helps in developing the samatvam or equanimity – samatvam yogam uchyate –
> says Krishna. Looking for Brahman out there or a statement I have Vedanta
> knowledge but now I want to experience Brahman indicates that one has not
> understood the truth of Brahman. I am reminded of JK’s statement – it is
> not
> the understanding as an understanding as a thought but the understanding as
> an understanding as a fact. Until then mahaavaakya is not understood. A
> similar statement is made by a student of Kena Up.
> In the missing 10th man story, the one, who has desire to know the 10th
> man,
> has already negated in counting all the nine people as they are not the
> missing 10th man. The teacher has already assured that the 10th man exists
> and hence the search for the 10th man is not going to be futile. In
> counting
> the 9 people one has already negated that they are not the 10th man. Thus
> no. 1 man means he is not the dashamaH or the 10th man. No. 2 is not the 10
> th man. Thus by neti, neti or not No. 1, not No.2, etc he has already
> negated all the men that are countable, and there is still a hunger as well
> as anxiety to know the whereabouts of the 10th man. In the very counting of
> the nine and in dismissing that they are not the tenth, there is the
> 10thman inherent in the counting, since he is the counter present in
> all the
> counting of nine-men. That which is there inherently in all the counting,
> yet different from the counted ones, is the very counter that the counter
> missed to count.  The 10th man is inherently present in all the negation of
> the first second .. ninth man as not the 10th. When the teacher says you
> are
> the missing 10th man, the knowledge can be direct and immediate as in the
> introductory statement, where counter encounters the missing man directly
> and immediately, provided he pays attention to the teaching and stops
> looking for the 10th man elsewhere where he can never find him. I want to
> know the 10th man and I am the only one left after excluding the nine
> persons as not the 10th . After excluding the nine, there is no one else
> left out there to exclude from the list as not the 10th. He has done his
> saadhana by rejecting, neti, neti, of all the countable ones, namely1 to 9
> persons as na dashamaH – as not the 10th person. He is mentally distressed
> also indicative of samsaara. Fortunately or unfortunately he happened to be
> the 10th man. When the teacher introduces the 10th man as you are the
> 10thman, words are direct and definitely produce doubtless knowledge
> since all
> other possibilities for being 10th are already eliminated. He does not have
> look for the 10th man any more or meditate to experience the 10th man.
>  Does
> he have to do Nidhidhyaasana as I am the 10th man to discover the 10th man,
> since the scriptures says so?   He does not have to say now I know where
> the
> 10th man is and I need to sit down and do meditation on the 10th man to
> recognize him.  The knowledge is immediate and direct when the teacher
> introduces the 10th man by pointing to the person as you are the missing 10
> th person. In the discovery of the 10th man one also recognizes that
> 10thman was never lost at any time in the past when everybody thought
> that he
> was last. The problem for not finding 10th man is only because that
> everybody objectifying the 10th man as something different from the subject
> who is doing the counting. Hence the fundamental problem in the lack of
> recognition is the very objectification of the subject.
> In the same way the Vedantic student after discarding everything else as
> neti neti, what is left is only the existing-conscious entity, the self
> that
> he is that he forgot to recognize. He does not have to wait to experience
> Brahman, nor he has to gain some separate Brahman knowledge after gaining
> self-knowledge via mahaavaakya that the self that you are is nothing but
> that Brahman. (VishiShtaadvaita says one can gain self-knowledge but that
> is
> only an intermediary step. Subsequently, and more importantly, one has to
> attain Brahman by surrendering himself to the Lord.  Better thing to do is
> to skip the intermediary self-knowledge step (since nothing much is
> accomplished in this step) and go directly to attain the abode of the Lord.
> For vishiShTaadvaitin self is of atomic size different from all the
> pervading Vishnu).  In advaita, self is Brahman, and there are no two as
> self and Brahman. From advaita point, no other corroborative experience is
> required since the self is present directly and immediately and all the
> time
> is being experienced. The mahaavaakya provides the pramANa vaakyam or
> statement of fact introduces the self as the one is constantly present or
> existent in all things because of which I am aware of the things in the
> waking, dream and deep sleep state. PramANa alone by definition is a means
> of knowledge, and without it no knowledge can take place. It is similar to
> the fact that eyes can alone see the colors and forms as soon as one opens
> the eyes, and if they are functioning. The knowledge gained by one pramANa
> in its field of operation cannot be negated by another pramANa. For example
> eyes see the colors and forms and the knowledge of colors and forms gained
> by the eyes can not be negated by ears since their field of operation is
> different from that of eyes. Similarly for the knowledge of the self which
> is of the nature of the existence-consciousness-limitless, mahaavaakya
> alone
> is pramANa. It is direct knowledge since it is of introductory in nature.
> Vedanta vaakya pramANa is apurusheya pramANa, which is unquestionable.
> Other
> pramANas can not either prove or disprove the Veda pramANa, since their
> field operation is different. They are pramANa for anaatma and not for
> aatma. Science which operates in the field of anaatma can never therefore
> prove or disprove the existence of the self, the aatma since the filed of
> operation for the instrument of knowledge is different.
> Hence intense faith in the pramANa vaakyam namely tat tvam asi is essential
> for knowledge to take place. For the knowledge gained to become firm or
> abiding in spite of unavoidable transactions with the world of plurality
> where raaga and dveshaas at transactional level are unavoidable even for a
> jnaani, nidhidhyaasana on the knowledge gained is required, as prescribed
> by
> the scriptures- nidhidhyaasitavyaH. Nidhidhyaasana is not going to give new
> knowledge but helps to internalize the self-knowledge gained through
> shravana and manana.
> Hari Om!
> Sadananda
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