Creation theories (was Re: What is the exactmeaning/significance of this?)
vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM
Mon Apr 28 13:24:30 CDT 2003
>I have a doubt. If the Atman described is jIva, then referring to the third
>state, a state where Self-realization has not yet occured, why does the
>upanishad say that it is the lord of all beings etc? We are not
>ourself as the lord of the universe in the third state. Given this, can one
>say that Atman here refers to jIva?
Nothing is experienced in the deep sleep state, period. That is why the
state of realization is often compared to sushupti in other upanishads.
It is the same person, who habitually identifies with limited objects and
who is subject to ignorance, who upon the dawn of knowledge, loses this
habitual identification and comes to realize that his/her own Self is
actually Brahman. That is the whole point of the Ma U teaching of
meditation on omkAra.
Ma U must also be understood on at least two levels, the individual and the
cosmic. In all the Upanishads, the person in deep sleep is said to have
become one (ekIbhUta) or to have attained his "own" state (svam apiti =
svapiti, see Ch U or Br U). That is to say, in the deep sleep state, the
jIva is actually immersed in Brahman, which is in all beings
(sarvAntaryAmI). This is because the jIva desires nothing and sees no
dreams, but remains as consciousness alone or as a "mass of consciousness"
(prajnAna-ghana). However, the jIva may remain unaware of this, due to the
fact that its associated ignorance has not been removed. On the other hand,
as ignorance is not an ultimate eternal principle, in this state the
equation with ISvara is done. For that matter, there is an equation of the
individual self with the cosmic self in all states (viSva = sthUlabhuk,
taijasa = praviviktabhuk and prAjna = Anandabhuk).
To sum up, there is a pedagogical and a meditative approach taken here
towards the Advaitic truth. The jIva begins with itself in its conventional
states of functioning and ends with the realization that it is, in reality,
Brahman. This realization happens in the fourth state.
So, to answer the question, yes, it is correct to begin with taking the
Atman going through the three states as the jIva, but it is necessary to
end with the Atman as Brahman in the fourth state.
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