[Advaita-l] renunciation

Ger Koekkoek gerkoekkoek at wanadoo.nl
Sat May 13 11:30:31 CDT 2006

I would like to react on this response from Vidyasankar:

While I appreciate that traditional renunciation has often been abused by 
many, I would also say that the modern conception is even more prone to 
abuse by self-delusional people. It is not at all easy to renounce the 
externals of home, family and money if one has also not mentally renounced 
everything. On the other hand, it is easy for the mind to fool itself into 
believing whatever it pleases. Call us stick-in-the-mud or whatever else, 
but there are strong reasons why so many of us on this list value our 
tradition highly.


Well, that's the main reason why I entered this mail-ring. Mentally renunciation is the only thing western "advaitists" are talking about. And most of them pretend to understand a whole lot of this. They are giving "darshan", that's how they call it, for money during the weekend, and if you criticize this a bit, then there answer is: "who is criticizing?"
In this way they use atma vichara upsite down! In this way I could intend to shoot somebody, and when he is becoming scared I could say "who is becoming scared, the problem exist only within your illusions."
The ultimate so called guru in this western romance with India was not a western person, but was osho or rashneesh.
According to this kind of people everything is Maya except their own ego! This misunderstanding can very easily come into existence and I don't even dare to say that I am free of it.
So yes indeed, it is easy for the mind to fool itself into believing whatever it pleases.
And so, as a reaction on that all, I became interested in traditional adwaita, and I am still slowly seeking my place in this. Perhaps I go to learn sanskrit, as you advised me, I have already bought some books, and found some good sites on internet. The university of Koln, Germany, has a wonderful site with all the tekst from Shankara in Sanskrit, amongst many others.
It's by reading this mailring I am learning some more sanskrit words already, but I don't dare to use them yet.

Real renunciation is a very subtle and difficult matter which is very seldom reached. I do live alone, I have no wife and children, and only see a brother or a cousin now and then. Why can my meditation not be a bit longer as it is? 
Perhaps because I like to study books in all kinds of directions and I cannot stop with it. Renunciation is: giving your whole heart to Brahman, and I simply can't, even not after reading a lot about religion, and realise that perhaps renunciation is one of the few matters that all religions have in common. 
Perhaps it is not the lack of a superbe insight that bounds us to the world, it is simply the taste of honey, and perhaps even a superbe insight can have the taste of honey too. It's my humble opinion we can't be too much in a hurry in this matter. Perhaps real renunciation, although we have to work at it a whole lifetime, is at the end a gift. 
So I go on reading and thinking, with a short meditation in the middle of it. I'm sorry, I can't do better than that.

The idea of mental renunciation can very easily lead to all kinds of abstract illusions, while really giving up something fysically can show one the truth about this, I agree with you completely. It is a pity that worldwide the monastery's are dissappearing, allthough I feel a bit inbetween in this matter. 

To S. Janarayanayan,
     and others,

I highly appreciate your dialogue around Atma Vichara and RM and tradition, I am learning from it. (Or at least I  believe I am learning from it.)

With greetings,

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