[Advaita-l] FW: How to control the mind (without meditation)?

Vidyasankar Sundaresan svidyasankar at hotmail.com
Sat Mar 7 20:49:14 CST 2009

I meant to send this response to the list earlier, hence I'm forwarding it.

> Can you please explain this with an example? If I see objects of this world, how else will I know they're mithya (if not through assumptions based on advaita philosophy)? For instance, when I see objects of this world, say a chair, I can only assume it's mithya based on what I know about advaita. How is it possible to 'realize' and not merely assume that the chair is mithya? 
> Our eyes are only going to perceive the chair in the exact same shape, size, form, and color, no matter what we do. That being the case, wouldn't it be impossible to have any other type of perception with respect to the chair? But, based on this perception, the chair will always be a chair and not mithya. Which means, we'll be stuck in the same position that every worldly person is.

The process to be followed is not to simply see a chair and repeat, "this chair is false."
A mental repetition of such a form will not really lead to true insight and is not the
recommended meditation in advaita vedAnta.

Rather, it goes like this. One should seek to know the reality behind the chair. Say it
is completely made out of wood. Then behind the chair lies the reality of wood. Behind
the wood lies the reality of the tree that gave the wood. Behind the tree lies the reality
of the seed from which the tree grew. Behind the seed lies the fruit, behind which lies
another tree, in infinite regress. But this seed - tree cycle has another reality behind it,
which is the soil that supports them. If we keep analyzing every cognition this way,
then we are taking the first steps in moving away from assumption towards realization.

So much for external objects. advaita teaches you to apply a similar process of examining
the reality hidden behind the appearance, not only of external objects, but also of one's
own self. It is through a contemplation of the true reality of oneself that one arrives at
conclusions regarding the true reality of the entire universe.


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