[Advaita-l] Is advaita atheistc?

Ram Garib garib_ram at yahoo.co.in
Sat Feb 17 17:49:53 CST 2007

Sri Asad Mustafa wrote:

> I have a querry. Is advaita vedanta atheistic
> religion? 

Advaita vedanta is not. But in so far as the basic
premise of advaita is concerned, I do not see any
theistic flavour there. The basic premise of advaita
is that the essence of everthying including myself is
only one non-dual reality. God -- as the word is
understood -- is not the fundamental reality in view
of advaita. A substantial portion of advaita
methodology depends upon the analysis of three states
of waking, dreaming and deep sleep with hardly any
reference to God. 

There has been a charge on advaita vedanta that it is
only a disguised form of buddhism, which is
unadulterated atheism. 
> I see Ramana making few references to God.

Ramana says that God is only as real as you. It can be
interpreted as theistic or atheistic depending upon
whether the context is transactional level or absolute

> I understand that 'vedanta' comes
> from veda. Is veda polytheistic or monotheistic or
> atheistc?

Every school of veda claims itself to be the true
representation of veda. Thus depending upon one's
school allegience veda may be claimed as polytheistic
or montheistic or even atheistic. 

It is not only the western educated Hindus who find
vedas as atheistic, but some of the most orthodox and
greatest proponents of vedas also think so. kumArila,
a genius of his times, has hardly any use for the
concept of God. In itself, veda does not provide a
consistent structured metaphysical scheme. Coherent
philosophical schools were developed much later
highlighting one strand of vedic thought and
reinterpreting other strands in a manner to make vedas
look consistent. However, no single school is in a
position to put its exclusive claim on vedas, which
are simultaneously polytheistic, montheistic and

With regards,
Ram Garib

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