[Advaita-l] The essence of advaita

S.N. Sastri sn.sastri at gmail.com
Thu Sep 20 19:53:24 CDT 2007

When a rope is mistaken for a snake in dim light or mild darkness (manda
andhakAra) we say that the rope is the substratum of the illusion and the
snake is superimposed on it. But the rope itself is a superimposed object;
it is superimposed on pure Consciousness (i.e., brahman). So it is said in
vedAnta that the substratum is not just 'rope', but 'rajju upahita
chaitanyam'---   pure Consciousness with the rope as upAdhi or limiting
adjunct. Thus every object is pure Consciousness limited by that object, or,
in other words, pure Consciousness appearing in the form of  that object.  The
practical implication of this statement is that whenever we see an object or
a living being we must immediately think of it as pure Consciousness or
brahman appearing in the form of that object or living being.. That is, the
name and form have to be ignored and everything should be looked upon as
pire Consciousness. This is the essence of advaita.


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