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Thread: How can maya lead to knowledge of brahman

  1. #11
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    Re: How can maya lead to knowledge of brahman

    hariḥ om̐
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    Question 2
    more on this māyā here: http://hindudharmaforums.com/showthread.php?14760-getting-the-whole-story&p=129549#post129549


    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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    Re: How can maya lead to knowledge of brahman

    Namaste yajvanji

    have you finished your reply or will you answer question No 5 which is left so far

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    Re: How can maya lead to knowledge of brahman

    hariḥ om̐
    ~~~~~~

    namasté


    Quote Originally Posted by jopmala View Post
    Namaste yajvanji

    have you finished your reply or will you answer question No 5 which is left so far
    I will answer, yet halted to see if there were any questions before proceeding.
    Question 5 Lastly why Brahman made a choice to become many and enter into it and then many to return to its original state ?

    There are many answers to this... and for me to say for certain why the Supreme does this or that shows only my ignorance.
    Yet I will offer a few notions given by some of the luminaries I have read and also what I was given by my teacher for consumption.

    The wording of 'made and entered into it' is the fashion of this
    upaniṣad; it is the style for communicating some very big ideas for our understanding. From another school of thought we are told that this Being, by its own nature is creative. My teacher referred to it as creative intelligence tendency. Yet to suggest it makes something then enters into it is not the notion of the school I now am referring to. It is not like I make a pie then jump into the pie!

    The very fabric of creation is also this Being. There is nothing outside of it. There is no lumber-yard the Supreme goes to for wood to build a home ( code for universe) then jumps-in and lives in the home. The very fabric of the universe is none other than this Being too. Yet the beauty of this is, He (it) never gets used up. All of ~this~ happens within Him ( Being); nothing can be out side of it.
    But why does He/Being do this? Many say for the sport of it. Think of a very joyful Being that is eternal, there is no time that limits this Being. Because it/He/the Supreme is full of joy , why then not have sport? IN this school of thinking He is not lacking, He is not with a desire, He just likes to express wholeness and fullness even in diversity!

    One view is he plays hide-and-seek with himself. He creates all of this - you, me, society. He hides Himself but still plants a desire within us of this feeling that we're not full ( the He is not full/whole while in the human form). This was āṇava = ‘small’ or the person in boundaries previously mentioned. It is none other than Him in this 'small' condition, but still Him. Ask the wise of their experience when they realize or re-member who they are. They will say I was this all along! It is Him finding Himself again.

    This is one view , and I can see how it applies and makes perfect sense.

    I offer this one view, but there are others. I will add one or two more as they're more esoteric but still a delight to write about.

    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ



    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  4. #14
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    Re: How can maya lead to knowledge of brahman

    hariḥ om̐
    ~~~~~~

    namasté

    There are many answers to this... and for me to say for certain why the Supreme does this or that shows only my ignorance. Yet I will offer a few notions given by some of the luminaries I have read and also what I was given by my teacher for consumption.

    continuing...
    This post goes to answer question 5 from a very profound point of view. For some reading this , they will not ~ get it ~ and that is fine. It takes some time to sink-in and needs to be read several times.
    Question 5 - Lastly why Brahman made a choice to become many and enter into it and then many to return to its original state ?
    I look to one of the greatest luminaries of advaita ( non-dual) vedānta, gauḍapādacharya1. He offers a commentary on the māṇḍūkya Upaniṣad (māṇḍūkyopaniṣat). The māṇḍūkya upaniṣad is one of the 10 principle upaniṣad-s that are recognized, yet it is only 12 śloka-s (verses) and deals with the ultimate reality: sarvam̐ hyetad brahma (all this is brahman), which is the 2nd verse of this upaniṣad2. Gauḍapādacharya’s work is called a kārikā3 hence māṇḍūkyopaniṣatkārikā, also known as gauḍapādiyakārikā, done in 215 verses , 4 chapters.

    If you recall from post 9 above I mentioned Being as eternal - the ‘not-made’ , ajāta, unborn and stainless, pure Being. The knowledge offered by gauḍapādacharya goes deep-and-wide into this, and is often called ajātivāda or the discussion/knowledge/speaking about that which is unborn (ajāta). So this post will extend the notion of eternal, not-made, ajāta, and tie-in māyā from another point of view, along with a few other ideas.

    The one verse that will be reviewed is from chapter 2. It is fairly important to know the 4 chapters and their names to best understand where this one verse we’re reviewing fits in:
    • chapter 1 (29 verses) — āgama prakaraṇa - the traditional doctrine (āgama) chapter or book (prakaraṇa) which contains the 12 verses of the māṇḍūkya Upaniṣad
    • chapter 2 (38 verses) — vaitathya prakaraṇa – unreality or falseness, ‘māyā’ chapter
    • chapter 3 (48 verses) — adavaita prakaraṇa – nondual chapter
    • chapter 4 (100 verses) — alātaśānti prakaraṇa – the firebrand of peace

    The verse
    We go to gauḍapādacharya’s commentary (kārikā) on 2nd chapter , 32nd verse. Let me offer several translations of the same verse, then we will take the time to comprehend what is profoundly offered.
    न निरोधो न चोत्पत्तिर्न बद्धो न च साधकः
    न मुमुक्षुर्न वै मुक्त इत्येषा परमार्थता ॥ ३२ ॥
    na nirodho na cotpattirna baddho na ca sādhakaḥ |
    na mumukṣurna vai mukta ityeṣā paramārthatā || 32 ||

    version 1
    There is no dissolution, no birth, none in bondage, none aspiring for wisdom, no seeker of liberation and none liberated. This is the absolute truth.

    version 2
    There is no cessation, no coming-to-be, none in bondage, no seeker after liberation and no-one liberated. This is paramārthā ( or the highest/whole truth)

    version 3
    Neither destruction nor again origination, neither one bound down (to this
    saṁsāra​4) nor again an aspirant (or one working) for salvation; neither one desirous of salvation nor one emancipated; thus (is) the highest truth (paramārthā ).

    version 4 - by rāmaṇa mahaṛṣi
    There is no creation, no destruction, no bondage, no longing to be freed from bondage, no striving to be free (from bondage), nor anyone who has attained (freedom from bondage). Know that this is the ultimate truth (paramārtha).

    The insight and explanation
    Now we can consider the meaning of this verse which is the core of the 2nd chapter gauḍapādiyakārikā. We will start this in the next post.


    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ

    terms
    1.Gauḍapāda-ji was the guru of govinda bhagavatpāda who, in turn was the guru of ādi śaṅkara (śaṅkara bhagavatpāda); hence
    gauḍapāda-ji is the teacher’s teacher of ādi śaṅkara, sometimes referred to as one’s grand-master. It is these masters
    that formed and shaped the knowledge of advaita ( non-dual) vedānta.
    2. सर्वं ह्येतद् ब्रह्मायमात्मा ब्रह्म सोऽयमात्मा चतुष्पात् ॥ २ ॥
    sarvaṁ hyetad brahmāyamātmā brahma so 'yamātmā catuṣpāt || 2 ||
    All this is verily Brahman. This
    ātman is Brahman. This ātman has four quarters.
    3. kārikā – doctrine, but also a concise statement; precision in offering knowledge is how I look at it.
    4. saṁsāra - passing through a succession of states , circuit of mundane existence; going from birth-to-birth
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  5. #15
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    Re: How can maya lead to knowledge of brahman

    hariḥ om̐
    ~~~~~~

    namasté


    The insight and explanation
    Now we can consider the meaning of this verse which is the core of the 2nd chapter gauḍapādiyakārikā.

    32​nd kārikā
    There is no dissolution, no birth, none in bondage, none aspiring for wisdom, no seeker of liberation and none liberated. This is the absolute truth.

    Now why is there no birth or dissolution? It is from the standpoint that brahman, the supreme is eternal - the ‘not-made’ , ajāta, unborn and stainless, pure Being. It has no birth and therefore can have no demise. We are also told again and again sarvam̐ hyetad brahma (all this is brahman)1. This now sets the stage for the discussion.

    Let’s offer a point of view that is extracted from verse 32 and supported by 6th and 12 verses of the 2nd chapter of the gauḍapādiyakārikā we’re involved with. If there is no birth nor death anything that occurs in the middle of these two assumptions must also not be, must not occur, must be unreal.
    • birth _____living/actions_____death

    Another view of this: Let’s say just for arguments sake that there is birth, and with that death must follow, as all that is born must perish. So what occurs in the middle?
    • birth ___transition___death.

    Things born are on the path to death and this ‘change’ that occurs is not stable, it is constantly changing as it is approaching its dissolution, its destruction, death. So, this change too cannot be absolute, or ~real~ because it is not constant and unchanging. Said another way: If an entity lacks permanent existence it is therefore ultimately unreal due to having a beginning and an end, it must also therefore be unreal in the present or middle.

    So , herein lies the brain cramp... we are told there is no birth no death and no change – yet here we are! We are here with birth and death and change! Someone is cognizing this phenomenon. Consciousness and Awareness exist, of this there is no doubt. The answer to this comes from gauḍapāda-ji’s 12th śloka of chapter 2:
    कल्पयत्यात्मनाऽऽत्मानमात्मा देवः स्वमायया |
    स एव बुध्यते भेदानिति वेदान्तनिश्चयः ॥ १२ ॥
    kalpayatyātmanā''tmānamātmā devaḥ svamāyayā |
    sa eva budhyate bhedāniti vedāntaniścayaḥ || 12 ||
    this says,
    ātman, the self-luminous, through the power of his own māyā, imagines in himself by himself (all the objects that the subject experiences within or without). He alone is the cognizer of the objects (so created). This is the decision of vedānta.

    All that we cognize and see is none other than ātman and ātman = brahman. The cognizer (us) is also Him (ātman = brahman) , yet many do not believe this even when told by the wise, sarvam̐ hyetad brahma (all this is brahman). This does not mean oh, everything I view is brahman and ‘that’ outside of me too is brahman. This would be an incorrect assessment because the cognizer ( you, me, our population, all the animals, the universe, etc. etc.) with this awareness is consciousness which is brahman. This meets with verse twelve’s statement that ‘He alone is the cognizer of the objects so created’.

    This answers question 5
    How did He enter into creation ? He did this by becoming it, and did this all inside Himself without any need to leave Himself for anything. He did not need to enter it, as He is it!

    The māyā that occurs is on His own Self by His (Its) choice, that allows Him to be (as if) measured out (mā) + restrained (yā) in a differentiated / variegated manner. This is the illusion (māyā) that the undifferentiated, wholeness of Being experiences Himself as differentiated. You ( who are reading this) are participating in this event! Because you cannot be outside of It!

    This verse then makes perfect sense ( as I see it):
    There is no creation, no destruction, no bondage, no longing to be freed from bondage, no striving to be free (from bondage), nor anyone who has attained (freedom from bondage). Know that this is the ultimate truth (paramārtha).

    This verse is ultimate truth (paramārtha) when viewed that all-and-everything is none other than perfect , stainless, infinite Being. What freedom does Being need? Where can there be bondage? That suggests change. If there is change and transition that is not 'real' or absolute, and we know Being/brahman to be whole, pure full and eternal ( so say the wise and our scriptures).

    As I mentioned early on this takes some pondering, some study...nidīdhyāsana2

    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ

    1. māṇḍūkya upaniṣad - 2nd verse
    2.
    nidīdhyāsana = nidī+dhyāna+āsana = bestowing by shining down + profound deep thought + abiding, dwelling.
    • Hence nidīdhyāsana = abiding in profound deep thought ( meditation) that bestows or yield insight (light).
    • Some write nītī+dhyāna+āsana nītī = bringing , guidance , management ; so this = bringing & managing, dwelling in deep thought ( on the subject at hand)

    Last edited by yajvan; 15 January 2017 at 07:23 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  6. #16
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    Re: How can maya lead to knowledge of brahman

    hariḥ om̐
    ~~~~~~

    namasté


    Within gauḍapādacharya’s kārikā-s the knowledge is regarding the ultimate truth (paramārtha); he sets the stage for the adivaita vedānta school.

    • adivaita vedānta - Total wholeness non-dual view; within (non dual) kaśmir śaivism it is called parā
    • viśiṣtādvaita vedānta - fullness and duality ( unity in diversity); within (non dual) kaśmir śaivism it is parāpara
    • dvaita vedānta – the world of duality; within (non dual) kaśmir śaivism it is āpara


    So now one can ask this question: Are you in the world or is the world in you ? (This is an extension of question 5 above).

    • Well from the dual view ( differentiated awareness) the answer is, I am in the world.
    • From the parāpara view (viśiṣtādvaita vedānta) , the world is in me – as this is unity in diversity. There are many things in the world but it is all harmonized, an extension of me everywhere.
    • From the parā point of view there is only Being. There is not even the case of suggesting there is ‘world’ ( diversity) and is there ‘me’ – as there is not even one iota of any-thing that is non-different of Being... total homogeneous, stainless Being without time, space, cause. It is the continuum of Being ( pure awareness) without break or pause.


    The next question: how can this experience( of parā) occur within the human condition? This is pointed out in gauḍapādacharya’s kārikā’s and I will let the reader pursue it.


    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

  7. #17
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    Re: How can maya lead to knowledge of brahman

    hariḥ om̐
    ~~~~~~

    namasté


    from post 15 above,
    Quote Originally Posted by yajvan View Post
    You ( who are reading this) are participating in this event! Because you cannot be outside of It!
    It is gauḍapādacharya that helps us understand this notion a bit better... if we look to the 3rd chapter and 3rd kārikā of his māṇḍūkyopaniṣatkārikā1, it says the following:
    आत्मा ह्याकाशवज्जीवैर्घटाकाशैरिवोदितः ।
    घटादिवच्च संघातैर्जातावेतन्निदर्शनम् ॥ ३ ॥
    ātmā hyākāśavajjīvairghaṭākāśairivoditaḥ |
    ghaṭādivacca saṃghātairjātāvetannidarśanam || 3 ||

    This says in general that ātmā (ātman, Self) is similar to ākāśa ( pure space); jīva-s ( or embodied selves, people) can be compared to the space (ākāśa) enclosed in pots.

    So, to better understand this example one must note the following:
    • ākāśa ( pure space) is infinite with no edges or boundaries. That is why it is ~like~ Self or ātman.
    • the space inside of a pot is non-different from the space outside the pot. How could it be different as pure space cannot be contained? Yet for humans we think that a pot ( or container) holds this space within it.
    • with further thought it is space that actually holds the pot in it! Pure space (ākāśa) provides the space for things to exist. You cannot have a thing (like a pot) without having space for it to exist in.
    • so , this ākāśa ( pure space) is the same within the pot or outside the pot as it cannot be differentiated.
      • yet for humans when Self is supposedly ‘inside’ the pot we think it is jīva or some individualized soul or a fractional form of Being.

    This is what this kārikā points out.
    This is why I said,
    You ( who are reading this) are participating in this event! Because you cannot be outside of It!
    You see , inside or outside the pot ( or the human condition) there is nothing but ātmā ; just like ākāśa (pure space) it cannot be contained. This is the māyā of post 15 above. It is the Supreme pretending to be contained.

    That is why I offered the following in post 13,
    Ask the wise of their experience when they realize or re-member who they are. They will say I was this all along! It is Him finding Himself again.
    When one looks inside or outside the pot the space is non-different. This is the awakening.

    ... this takes some pondering...nidīdhyāsana
    2




    इतिशिवं
    iti śivaṁ

    terms
    1. māṇḍūkyopaniṣatkārikā – see post 14 above
    2. nidīdhyāsana = nidī+dhyāna+āsana = bestowing by shining down + profound deep thought + abiding, dwelling.


    Last edited by yajvan; 15 January 2017 at 08:47 PM.
    यतस्त्वं शिवसमोऽसि
    yatastvaṁ śivasamo'si
    because you are identical with śiva

    _

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