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Thread: What is Atman/Brahman?

  1. #1

    What is Atman/Brahman?

    Greetings friends


    From what I understand Atman/Brahman is the true self, the eternal I


    However i feel this is missing something and perhaps getting it wrong


    What is Atman/Brahman?

    what is the definition of Atman/Brahman?


    Namaste and Metta
    "Not to do evil, to cultivate the good, and to purify the mind. This is the teaching of all the Buddha's"

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    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anicca View Post
    Greetings friends
    From what I understand Atman/Brahman is the true self, the eternal I
    However i feel this is missing something and perhaps getting it wrong
    What is Atman/Brahman?
    what is the definition of Atman/Brahman?
    Namaste and Metta
    Namaste Anicca,

    In another thread, I suggested Mandukya Upanishad, because that indicates Atman's characteristics in a single paragraph, first declaring it to be 'indescribable'.

    Brihadarayanaka Upanishad indicates it by pointing out 'Neti-Neti'. Whatever you can identify/perceive/know of yourself and of the Universe is not Atman-Brahman. Since, the Upanishad declares "How will the knower be known?"

    Kena Upanishad indicates it by saying that it is that by which Mind is Known.

    Brahma Sutras define Brahman as that from which proceed the acts of creation, maintenance and destruction -- meaning it is source of everything and every process.

    Atman is surely not Pancha Kosha. I suggest the following post:
    http://www.hindudharmaforums.com/showthread.php?t=4033

    Best Wishes

    Om Namah Shivaya
    That which is without letters (parts) is the Fourth, beyond apprehension through ordinary means, the cessation of the phenomenal world, the auspicious and the non-dual. Thus Om is certainly the Self. He who knows thus enters the Self by the Self.

  3. #3

    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anicca View Post
    Greetings friends

    From what I understand Atman/Brahman is the true self, the eternal I
    However i feel this is missing something

    Namaste and Metta
    Hi! Look at your own Signature...

    "Not to do evil, to cultivate the good, and to purify the mind. This is the teaching of all the Buddha's"

    There's the "missing" thing. Enlightenment is said to be a "loss", not "gain". Loss of what? Its in your signature. Nirvana: nir (without) vana (movement)

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    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    Namaste,

    The answer to your question is unanswerable.

    Since time immemorial, the rishis of India have stated what Tat (Atma/Brahman) is NOT, not what it is! This is because trying to describe the infinite in finite terms is simply impossible; it is something that cannot be understood, explained, described, or seen. It is that which has to be experienced.

    If you read the BrihadAranyaka Upanishad, the philosophy of "neti-neti" sums it up in a nutshell. We, as unawakened ones, cannot even attempt to describe Tat. This is what I believe Buddha emphasized. He insisted that trying to describe the infinite is futile and will only lead to attachment and consequently confusion. He never stated that Brahman/Atman is non-existent. Anyway, that is another argument for the other thread you have "participated" in.

    To experience Atman/Brahman, the little-self or AhamkArA (ego) has to cease to exist. Along with this, all the sheaths of subtle differentiation also cease to exist and all that is left, according to the Veda, is Atman/Brahman. Trying to describe this, which is neither that nor this, is simply an exercise in mental and sometimes verbal obfuscation.

    Namaskar.

    Quote Originally Posted by Anicca View Post
    Greetings friends


    From what I understand Atman/Brahman is the true self, the eternal I


    However i feel this is missing something and perhaps getting it wrong


    What is Atman/Brahman?

    what is the definition of Atman/Brahman?


    Namaste and Metta

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    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    "neti neti" is a very interesting technique. Sometimes I will say this in my mind when meditating or having a very "aware" moment.

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    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    Are the atman of different people all identical, or do people have unique atman?

    When one destroys their false self, the thing that they are left with: is that a blank, identical template that everyone has, or does everyone have a unique atman with personality and specific characteristics unique to them?

    -Lyn

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    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    This unique atman has a person attached to it, yes.

    Aum Namasivaya

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    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    Namaste Lyn.

    Quote Originally Posted by Penumbra View Post
    Are the atman of different people all identical, or do people have unique atman?

    When one destroys their false self, the thing that they are left with: is that a blank, identical template that everyone has, or does everyone have a unique atman with personality and specific characteristics unique to them?
    Let us explore it this way: suppose everyone of us has individual atmas on which our false self of bodily personality is superimposed, and then this false personality is destroyed, what would remain? Countless sparks of unique atmans accommodated in space, which would leave vacant space between them. But Brahman as one universal Atman occupies this space too so our supposition of individual unique atmans cannot be true, specially when the life force is immanent in every atom and unit of space of the universe.

    The ocean is full of daredevil waves and humble froth comprising tiny, trivial bubbles. If the waves subside and the bubbles pop, what would remain? Our JIvAtmas are like bubbles floating on Brahman, the Universal Atman, also known as ParamAtman.

    Every individual as a JIvAtma has this inherent fear in his/her 'sAdhana' towards Self-Realization: after the Self is realized, what would happen to 'me'?
    रत्नाकरधौतपदां हिमालयकिरीटिनीम् ।
    ब्रह्मराजर्षिररत्नाढ्यां वन्दे भारतमातरम् ॥

    To her whose feet are washed by the ocean, who wears the Himalayas as her crown, and is adorned with the gems of rishis and kings, to Mother India, do I bow down in respect.

    --viShNu purANam

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    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eastern Mind View Post
    This unique atman has a person attached to it, yes.

    Aum Namasivaya
    What gives it its uniqueness?

    Is each atman formed a certain way and then remains static, or is the personal uniqueness on each atman based on their karma imprints through their lives?

    Quote Originally Posted by saidevo View Post
    Namaste Lyn.

    Let us explore it this way: suppose everyone of us has individual atmas on which our false self of bodily personality is superimposed, and then this false personality is destroyed, what would remain? Countless sparks of unique atmans accommodated in space, which would leave vacant space between them. But Brahman as one universal Atman occupies this space too so our supposition of individual unique atmans cannot be true, specially when the life force is immanent in every atom and unit of space of the universe.

    The ocean is full of daredevil waves and humble froth comprising tiny, trivial bubbles. If the waves subside and the bubbles pop, what would remain? Our JIvAtmas are like bubbles floating on Brahman, the Universal Atman, also known as ParamAtman.
    Thanks. It seems that from discussing this with people, there are two main camps. Some believe that upon achieving Moksha, they retain individuality but are united with God. Others believe that their individuality dissolves in God upon the realization that there is but one. For instance, the person responding above you seems to feel that atman are unique. Some people I've talked to outside of this forum have been rather strong-willed when it comes to this issue, going so far to say that it is an ouright lie that atman = brahman. It admittedly confuses me when approaching this religion.

    Every individual as a JIvAtma has this inherent fear in his/her 'sAdhana' towards Self-Realization: after the Self is realized, what would happen to 'me'?
    What do you personally feel occurs upon self-realization. Does every notion of a "self" or "me" dissolve into all that is?

    -Lyn

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    Re: What is Atman/Brahman?

    hariḥ oṁ
    ~~~~~~

    Namast

    ātman आत्मन्- derived from an , to breathe ; at , to move ; vā , to blow i.e. the breath .

    We also know this ātman as essence , or one's fundamental nature.
    If this is true, the ātman as essence - can there be (then) more the one essence to the person or the collection of people?


    Just as the 'essence' of a gold ring, and or gold earring, a gold coin is gold, can there be more then one gold essence?


    If there is more then one essence where then does unity spring from?

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

    _

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