[Advaita-l] God and Brahman

sriram srirudra at vsnl.com
Mon Mar 28 05:26:15 CST 2005

Dear Members
Sri U.K.Anumula has raised the question whether God and Brahman are one and the same.I think The English word God is a poor substitute to be equivalent to Brahman.What is understood by God is an entity which is Omnipotent,OmniPresentand Omniscient and a supreme being who creates and controls both sentient and insentient beings.Usually applied to Christianity and Islam religions which speak of an almighty who punishes the sinners and rewards the obedient.Our Brahman is much more than what has been understood by the word God.Then What is or Who is Brahman.Advaita says that the Atman residing in every being is Brahman.In fact Brahman is the only one which is the ultimate truth and all else is false.But we are unable to reconcile as our logic raises many questions and that is how we have arrived at a stage that Advaita even borders on Athiesm.What Advaitic philosophy emphasises is that Brahman is the sathyam which is eternal and all other objects are mithya- that is perishable or capable of changing the name and form. To facilitate this understanding only Sri Sankara used Maya and Adhyasa.Due to maya which veils our jnana we dont see things as they are but as we would like them to be.Because of Avidhya or want of correct knowledge we misunderstand and mis interpret.To fully appreciate the concepts of maya and adhyasa one has to pursue knowledge or jnana.The pursuit of knowledge should be with full devotion and such a sincere effort will result in meeting a guru who will further help the sadhaka or the aspirant to get liberation.Whether this liberation is worthwhile?What is this liberation?This is nothing but the truth.When we know for certain the why of any thing that is Moksha.We know only how of things but not the whys.We know only the probabilities but not the certainities.For example when there are clouds there may or may not be rain.Clouds are the necessary condition for rain.But not the sufficient condition.If one knows what are the necessary and sufficient conditions for every event to happen or not happen he can be called a liberated soul.That is Brahmanhood.Our Rishis thought that there should be a knowledgeby getting which everything is known.That KNOWLEDGE IS BRAHMAN.All other knowledge is not worth obtaining.When such a knowledge is obtained you will not think this is good this is bad he is an enemy he is a friend and all such dualistic perceptions will dissolve and you will be ever blissful and a Athma rama and will not want anything from any body.
Then all other rituals temples etc are just there to constantly solicit the seeker of Truth or Knowledge to remind him to go on pursuing till the goal is obtained.

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