In this article, I suggest that moksha (liberation or enlightenment) in Advaita Vedanta is best understood psychologically. A psychological understanding is not only consistent with the Advaita Vedanta articulated by Shankara and Gaudapada, but avoids what will be called the problem of jivan mukti. This article will consist of three main parts. First, I will briefly discuss the metaphysics and ontology of Advaita Vedanta. Next, I will present the problem of jivan mukti, and the Advaitin response to (...) the problem. The problem of jivan mukti will lead to the third portion of the article, which is a presentation of what moksha is. At no point in the article will I be arguing the truth of the Advaitin position. Instead, I will be meeting Advaita on its own terms in order to come to some understanding of moksha. (shrink)
The concept of avidyā or ignorance is central to the Advaita Vedāntic position of Śȧnkara. The post-Śaṅkara Advaitins wrote sub-commentaries on the original texts of Śaṅkara with the intention of strengthening his views. Over the passage of time the views of these sub-commentators of Śaṅkara came to be regarded as representing the doctrine of Advaita particularly with regard to the concept of avidyā. Swami Satchidanandendra Saraswati, a scholar-monk of Holenarsipur, challenged the accepted tradition through the publication of his (...) work Mūlāvidyānirāsaḥ, particularly with regard to the avidyādoctrine. It was his contention that the post-Śaṅkara commentators brought their own innovations particularly on the nature of avidyā. This was the idea of mūlāvidyā or ‘root ignorance’, a positive entity which is the material cause of the phenomenal world. Saraswati argues that such an idea of mūlāvidyā is not to be found in the bhāṣyas (commentaries) of Śaṅkara and is foisted upon Śaṅkara. This paper attempts to show that although Śaṅkara may not have explicitly favoured such a view of mūlāvidyā, his lack of clarity on the nature of avidyā left enough scope for the post-Śaṅkara commentators to take such a position on avidyā. (shrink)
Introduction: Experiential deconstructive inquiry -- Foundational philosophies and spiritual methods -- Non-duality in Advaita Vedanta and Zen Buddhism -- Ontological differences and non-duality -- Meditative inquiry, questioning, and dialoguing as a means to spiritual insight -- The undoing or deconstruction of dualistic conceptions -- Advaita Vedanta : philosophical foundations and deconstructive strategies -- Sources of the tradition -- Upaniads that art thou (Tat Tvam Asi) -- Gauapda (c.7th century) : no bondage, no liberation -- Aakara (c.7th-8th century) : (...) there is no apprehender different from this apprehension to apprehend it -- Modern and contemporary masters -- Ramana Maharshi (1879-1950) : who am I? -- H.W.L Poonja (1910-1997) : you have to do nothing to be who you are! -- Gangaji (b. 1942) : you are that! -- Advaita Vedanta summary : nothing ever happens -- Zen Buddhism : philosophical foundations and deconstructive strategies -- Sources of the tradition -- The Lakvatra Sutra and the Vajracchedik Prajñpramit Sutra all things ... are not independent of each other and not two -- Ngrjuna (c.113-213) : Sasra is Nirva -- Eihei Dgen (1200-1253) : if I am already enlightened, why must I practice -- Contemporary masters -- Ekai Korematsu (b. 1948) : return to the spine -- Hgen Yamahata (b. 1935) : why not now -- Zen Buddhism summary : neither being nor non-being is to be taken hold of -- Deconstructive techniques and dynamics of experiential undoing -- Deconstructive techniques common to both traditions -- The teacher-student dynamic -- Key deconstructive techniques -- Unfindability analysis -- Bringing everything back to the here and now -- Paradoxical problems -- Negation -- Dynamics of experiential undoing -- Non-dual experiential space -- Experiential mapping : practitioners in the space -- Experiential undoing in Advaita Vedanta -- Experiential undoing in Zen Buddhism -- Conclusion: Deconstruction of reified awareness. (shrink)
The quest for self knowledge is pervasive in indian thought and is a central concern of advaita vedanta--The non-Dualistic system expounded primarily by samkara. The article explicates the advaitic conception of the self in its two primary dimensions: self and the empirical self. Arguments used to demonstrate the supreme self are critically appraised and the various theories which seek to explain the relation that obtains between the supreme self and the empirical self are examined. The advaitic analysis of the (...) empirical self is interpreted to be a "phenomenology of consciousness." it is argued that advaita vedanta does not so much explain the self as it describes the process by which we come to believe that it exists. The four levels of consciousness identified by advaita are then analyzed in terms of their respective ontological contexts and epistemological contents. (shrink)
This work is indeed a masterly survey of Mahayana Buddhism, Advaita Vedanta and kashmira Shaivism which brings into rominence the author`s original contributions some of which are of outstanding merit for a correct appreciation of the ...
Advaita has been extensively studied by various schools of philosophy in classical India. In contemporary times, however, it has only been compared to the philosophies of Immanuel Kant and F.H. Bradley. This book offers a comprehensive critique of Advaita, which is very contemporary in its outlook, analysis, and technique. It raises several new and fundamental questions while answering old and classical questions from a contemporary perspective. Srinivasa Rao supplements the classical Indian analysis with many special concepts and techniques (...) extensively used in contemporary Western logic and analytic philosophy. The book discusses whether what classical Advaita had maintained centuries ago can still be maintained, and if at all it is possible, in exactly which way. This book will be of considerable interest to scholars, teachers, and students of Indian philosophy. (shrink)
The aim of this dissertation is to present a systematic exposition of renunciation (Samnyasa) as a philosophico-religious category within Indian tradition with special reference to Advaita Vedanta of Samkaracarya.
NON-DUALISM, DUALISM AND MONISM Q.1 What do the following terms, often used by the Vedanta: dualism, monism, monotheism and non-dualism, mean? A. Every philosophical or cosmological vision which affirms two opposing and irreducible ...
In Indian philosophy and theology, the ideology of Vedanta occupies an important position. Hindu religious sects accept the Vedantic soteriology, which believes that there is only one conscious reality, Brahman from which the entire creation, both conscious and non-conscious, emanated. Madhusudana Sarasvati, who lived in sixteenth century Bengal and wrote in Sanskrit, was the last great thinker among the Indian philosophers of Vedanta. During his time, Hindu sectarians, rejected monistic Vedanta. Although a strict monist, Madhusudana tried to make a synthesis (...) between his monistic philosophy and his theology of emotional love for God. This book provides the religious context of his extensive and difficult works. This is the only comprehensive study of Madhusudana Sarasvati's thought. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: PREFACE -- SCHEME OF TRANSLITERATION -- ABBREVIATIONS -- CHAPTER I: INTRODUCTION 1-13 -- 1. Sarvajfiatmamuni, His Date, Life and Works1 -- 2. Scope And Utility of the Present Study 10 -- References11 -- CHAPTER II: ANUBANDHAS 14-24 -- Adhikarin or Competent person 14 -- Prayojanaor Necessity19 -- Necessity of Brahmavicdra20 -- References 22 -- CHAPTER III : THE CONCEPT OF BRAHMAN 25-52 -- 1. Significance of the Upanisads in Brahman25 -- 2. The Nature of Brahman27 -- (...) (1) Svarupalaksana of Brahman28 -- (2) Tatasthalaksana of Brahman35 -- 3. The Problem of Saguna Brahman and37 -- Nirguna Brahman -- 4. The Problem of Pramana about Brahman40 -- 5. References47 -- CHAPTER IV: THE CONCEPT OF AJNANA 53-82 -- 1. The Nature of Ajfinna53 -- 2. Pramana for the Existence of Ajnana56 -- 3. Two Powers of Avidyd57 -- 4. The Object and Locus of Ajhana58 -- (i) The object of Ajhana58 -- (ii) The Locus of Ajhna59 -- 5. Avidya--One or Many64 -- 6. Difference between Maya and Avidya66 -- 7. Cessation of Nescience69 -- 8. References75 -- CHAPTER V: THE CONCEPT OF ADHYASA 83-101 -- 1. The Nature of Adhyasa84 -- 2. Cause of Adhyasa89 -- 3. The Problem of the Material and the Locus -- of Dream 94 -- 4. The Problem of Adhara and Adhisthana96 -- 5, References98 -- CHAPTER VI : THE CONCEPT OF THE JiVA 102-138 -- 1. The Real Nature of the Jiva102 -- 2. The Empirical Jva 102 -- 3. Three States of the Empirical Jva106 -- 4. The Theories of Avaccheda, Pratibimba and108 -- Abhasa Regarding the Nature of the Jiva. -- 5. Number of the Jva114 -- (a) Eka-Sariraika-jiva-vada114 -- (b) Aneka-sariraikajiva-vada 115 -- 6. The Relation between the Jiva and Brahman 122 -- 7. Meaning of Tattvamasi-Akhcandartha 123 -- 8. References 131 -- CHAPTER VII: THE CONCEPT OF THE WORLD 139-165 -- 1. The Cause of the World139 -- 2. Parindmavada and Vivartavada 146 -- 3. Falsity of the World 151 -- 4. Refutation of Vynanavada 155 -- 5. Drstisrstivada and Srstidrstivada 157 -- 6. The Cessation of the World 159 -- 7. References 161 -- CHAPTER VIII: THE PATH TO LIBERATION 166-194 -- 1. Means of Liberation 166 -- 2. Internal and External Means of Liberation170 -- 3. The Final Means of Brahma-Realisation172 -- 4. Problem of Injunction in Sravana 174 -- 5. JThna as the only Means of Liberation 180 -- 6. The place of obligatory and Non-obligatory183 -- Rites in the Path of Liberation -- 7. Refutation ofjfnana-Karma-Samuccaya-vada 187 -- 8. References 189 -- CHAPTER IX: LIBERATION 195-212 -- 1. Nature of Liberation195 -- 2. Jivanmukti and Videhamukti 201 -- (i) Jlvanmukti 201 -- (ii) Videhamukti 206 -- 3. References 210 -- CONCLUSION 213 -- BIBLIOGRAPHY 219 -- INDEX 227. (shrink)