[Advaita-l] Vedanta and Nirvikalka Samadhi - Part II
kuntimaddisada at yahoo.com
Wed Jul 8 00:51:56 CDT 2015
One aspect to be known is knowledge is not purusha tantram, but is vastu tantram. It means, I cannot WILL the knowledge. It gets revealed to the prepared mind, when the ignorance covering the knowledge is removed by a valid pramaana, or by a proper inquiry. Vastu tantrum also means it gets revealed by itself, if and only if all the necessary ingredients for the pramANa to operate are present. For example for things to see, I need good eye-sight, sufficient light, opened eyes and the presence of the mind behind the eyes. Then seeing happens, and I cannot but see; and also I cannot ‘will’ not to see. This is true with any knowledge including the self-knowledge. In essence, prameyam (objects of knowledge) gets REVEALED to the intellect, if it is appropriately prepared as the pramANa uncovers the knowledge by removing ignorance. An egotistical person may claim that he has discovered it, whereas true Vedantin claims that facts are revealed to the mind.
Sages never say I discovered, but they only claim that the truth is revealed to them.
When I say I am ignorant of Chemistry, the ignorance is located in the intellect; self by its nature is all-pervading (including chemistry) and cannot have ignorance. Intellect which is ignorant of the chemistry has to learn from appropriate shaastra through a trained teacher. Knowledge takes place by a process involving a pramaana or means of knowledge. This involves shabda pramANa with authoritative teaching and the teacher teaches using Shaastra and not his personal experience, even though the later can reinforce the teaching if that experience is in tune with the shaastra. I need a guide even to do Ph.D in any field, as per university requirements. As always there may be exceptions to the rule but we cannot make rule out of exceptions. Full faith in the teaching is essential for any learning.
Again, just as knowledge of chemistry can only be removed by the intellectual enquiry, which has appropriate prerequisites to learn, similarly the self-knowledge can be only gained by a mind that is prepared for it. These pre-requisites are called four-fold qualifications that involve Viveka (discriminative intellect to recognize oneself), vairagya (dispassion to give up the misconceptions about oneself), shamaadi shatka sampatti (six-fold disciplines for the mind to become introvert and pursue the enquiry in the right direction with full faith) and mumukshutvam (intense desire to know oneself). These pre-requisites should be gained in this life or life before. Krishna says those who have gained these before in their last life, will be born in a favorable environment for their rapid evolution. How do I know I have them? If you are deeply and sincerely interested in Vedanta, obviously then, you have them sufficiently to proceed further. Of the thousands
of people very few have these, says Krishna; manushyaanaam sahasreshu… In essence, the solution to the problem is to recognize or realize the true nature of one’s own SELF (that I am infinite or Braham, one without a second, even while seeing the second all the time). How can I be one without a second while still seeing the second? That is possible only when I recognize by Vedantic study that I am the substratum of both the subject I and the object this. It is like gold saying I am one without a second while still looking at the ring, bangle, etc, Krishna declares – All beings are in Me- and yet no beings are in Me. He is one without a second.
If I try to do, who am I enquiry, without the knowledge of Vedanta to support, I could arrive at the recognition that I am pure conscious entity by negating everything that I objectify as I am not that, starting from the gross body. Even that enquiry has to be done by the mind only, as I am not the mind. By negation of everything as neti, neti, not this, I am limiting myself – This enquiry as per Vedanta will involve only tvam padaartha vichaara – enquiry of who you are. The complete knowledge, however, involves tat padaartha vichaara too – or enquiry of what is this objectifiable universe that I have negated before as I am not that. For that Vedanta forms the pramANa or means of knowledge, since it shows that creation is only mithyaa, or names and forms appearing on the substratum Brahman, and the teaching is, you are that (Brahman). This is, in essence jiiva-brahma aikya bodhaka vaakyam, or mahaa vaakyam of Vedanta – the oneness that pervades
the jiiva-jagat and Iswara. That teaching alone is the fulfilling teaching, since it teaches that I am the substratum of the world too; therefore, I am full or happy as I am. What I am searching for is not the self but happiness, and the discovery is fulfilled when I realize that I am full as I am – that is I am Brahman or infiniteness is my nature.
3. Some questions to ponder: To understand this problem correctly one should understand who I am now, and who is the one who has ignorance, and how to gain that knowledge of myself, and who realizes what, etc. One basic problem is neither Brahman nor the self can be known; being infinite Brahman cannot be an object of knowledge, and self being subject cannot be objectified for knowledge. Hence find out who you are cannot be done by asking who am I or trying to enquire. Bhagavan Ramana says analyze the analyst. Pushed to the limit it becomes endless. Hence we should have first clear understanding of the nature of the problem, since it is not an objective study, but it involves the subject, which cannot be objectified.
4. Dissection of Jeeva: According to Vedanta, there are five components constituting a jiiva. a.) The gross body, made up of gross matter (sthuula shareera). b.) The subtle body made up subtle matter with its four components- mind, intellect, ego, memory – manas, buddhi, ahankaara, chitta. As per Vedanta, mind is also matter and any matter is inert. c.) The causal body or kaaraNa shareera. It is called causal body since it is the cause for other bodies. Cause for taking a birth in a particular body is Vaasanas, which express as likes and dislikes. Vasaana is subtle impression left in the mind by ego-centric action. The chain reaction involves vaasanaas cause desires in the intellect, desires cause agitations in the mind, and agitations propel actions at the body level, and if the actions are ego-centric, they would leave more or stronger vaasanaas, resulting in stronger desires, etc. Vaasanaas are also called karma (action in its gross form) and thus
Krishna says karma forms the basis of creation. Total vaasanaas of all jiivas put together is also called maayaa or prakRiti, which forms the basis for Iswara to create. The fundamental root-cause for actions is again the ignorance of my real nature, i.e., not knowing that I am already full as myself; and therefore I act to fulfill myself. We are back to the basic problem and solution to the problem. d.)The forth component is chidaabhaasa or reflected consciousness, and e.) the fifth and final one is pure consciousness or OC.
5. We do not know what LIFE is, yet we all know we are alive as long as BMI is functioning. Vedanta says death is subtle and causal bodies separating from the gross body. We say – he is dead and gone. In essence, transmigration of the soul, as is normally called is movement of the subtle body to seek another environment and appropriate gross body suitable to exhaust the next set of vaasanaas that are ready to fructify. Given the fact that the subtle and the causal bodies are inert, question then is - what makes them alive, making them dynamic and active? When I say I am existent-conscious entity, who is saying that? Vedanta uses bimba-pratibimb or original and reflected consciousness to explain the nature of Jiiva.
Continued in the next Part.
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