Nature of Consciousness
Anand V. Hudli
anandhudli at HOTMAIL.COM
Fri Jul 23 13:31:37 CDT 1999
>> If the Vedas
>> and all those who remember them vanished from the Earth, would that
>> necessarily spell the end of all realization? This position strikes me as
>> overly ethnocentric. If the ideas of the Vedas are truly universal, then
>> they are not confined to any one tradition, language, or scripture.
>> And even
>> if Advaita Vedanta is the most profound and deeply carried out mystical
>> tradition on Earth (as I believe it is), it is still only one voice in a
>> human chorus that spans the continents and millennia. No one tradition ha
>> total monopoly on the truth.
>Trying to define truth is inherently monopolistic and we all do it.
I have been thinking about Shri Abhinava Vidya Tirtha's characterization
of Buddhism as "avaidika." There, he seems to indicate that an "avaidika"
tradition is one that does not follow the Vedas *fully*. What is the
significance of this? Let me try to explain. I would be interested to know
if others see this more clearly.
Whatever ideas that are noble and lofty, are in the Vedas. It *cannot*
be the case that there are some profound ideas but they are not found
in the Vedas. Any religion that bases its teachings on such profound
ideas must be either knowingly or unknowingly following the Vedas.
However, that religion, unless it is Vedic itself, cannot be following
Vedas *completely*, but only partially. So we have that all religions
of the world that are non-vedic must be following the Vedas partially,
whether such religions acknowledge the Vedas or not.
It is in this sense that a kind of "universality" of religions
vis-a-vis the uniqueness of Vedas may be accepted by the follower of
the Vedas. In other words, a reconciliation of the two views - 1) all
religions have some universal concepts, and 2) the Vedas are uniquely
capable of leading us to the truth - may be possible. Note, however,
that this implies the non-Vedic religions can help one make a good
beginning in the search for truth, and that the actual realization of
truth takes nothing short of the Vedas.
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