#4593 - Tuesday/Wednesday, May 8, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
- #4593 - Tuesday/Wednesday, May 8, 2012 - Editor: Jerry KatzThe Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlightsI've combined two days worth of issues in this one, featuring articles on Advaita.Fred Davis features Dennis Waite in the Awakening Clarity blog:DENNIS IS an adherent and advocate of traditional Advaita Vedanta. I love his definition of Advaita, which I'll reprint here from our Pointers section: "Advaita is an extremely simple philosophy. It's complete essence is summed up in its Sanskrit name: a - not, dvaita - two. In a very real sense, there is no need for a book to explain it. It can be summed up in a single sentence: There are not two things." It doesn't get any better or clearer than that.FOR THE CURIOUS, the second term, "Vedanta", means "end of the Vedas," which is where the Upanishads fall--at the very end of that vast block of Hindu hymns, rituals, and teachings that are chiefly formulaic and ritualistic, though their study and practice are said to lead one to mokSha, or liberation. "Veda" means "knowledge," and there is no knowledge higher than Self-knowledge.
THE UPANISHADS, the Indian scriptures that came behind the Vedas, could be said to be the foundation stones of modern Nonduality, though they themselves are now thousands of years old. So we can say that Advaita Vedanta is the set of Nondual teachings that arose when some probably disillusioned and certainly very wise men found the Vedic teachings to be incomplete, shall we say, and thus they went the way of the mystic--the way of direct individual experience.I DON'T MEAN to come on like a scholar here; I'm certainly not. I'm sure someone who knows much more than I--of which there is a great horde--will happily whack me on the head for historical errors I've perpetrated here. Nonetheless, my introduction will have to do. What I am trying to do is provide a bridge between much of what you may be finding on YouTube and your local bookstore and what you'll find on Dennis Waite's marvelous website, Advaita Vision, and in his teaching here today. To my mind, Advaita Vision is the most authoritative and in-depth Advaita Vedanta site on the Internet. I love the fact that with the recent relaunch it is now far more open and eclectic. My plan is to have Dennis back here again in July with an excerpt from his upcoming book, Advaita Made Easy, so stay tuned. We'll see if he can deliver on that promising title!Read the entire article here:
Lifestyle & Vocal Coaching
Sound Yoga TherapyThe Sound Yoga System consists of three main components and works with the body, mind and spirit. Asana class is taught from a solid foundation, step by step with focus on mindfulness and awareness of the body and breath. During Five Elements Sound Circles external sounds of singing bowls and Pythagorean Tuning Forks are used to balance the Five Elements (Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Ether). Raga Vocal Meditations work with the mind and breath by using the voice and the ears to develop listening skills and musical awareness. A Raga is similar to the Western musical scale with each Raga having a unique mood, attitude, story and image. Learning a Raga can be likened to getting to know a friend. With time and care invested the experience deepens.Practice-first lessonAdvaita Vocal PracticeSaReGaMa infused with the lessons of Advaita VedantaFirst class30 minsBecoming established in Sa:Find a comfortable seated position
Repeat after the teacher in the repetition of Sa with use of hands to support Sa
Join with teacher in Sa, continuing repetition
Establish open eye focal point
Joint Sa continued focus on unity
Bring awareness to sequence of in breath and breakdown of sounds within Sa:Sssss
AhJoint Sa continued focus on unity
Bring awareness to in breath at nostrils, bringing Prana into the eyes
Joint Sa continued focus on united vibrations
Bring awareness to face during in breath
Joint Sa continued
Bring awareness to internal space inside skull during in breath, opening the inside structure
Joint Sa continuedSa call and response to establish student and group in Sa without support of teachers voice, to find unity/unison within a groupBeginning Raag PracticeAlhaiya BilavalTones used:.Ga (grace note)
Call and responseQuestion from student:Why use of hands when singing and breathing?Answer from teacher:Two main reasons: 1) to consciously connect to receiving Prana and Sound which is always present; 2) to maintain the activation of Vishnu or the sustaining aspect when singingQuestion:What is the meaning of SaReGaMa?Answer:In general each raag has its own rasa or flavor with a prevailing bhava or attitude. A Raag is an entity with a life complete and unique.Bilaval Raag established at the end of the 16th centuty has been described in the following manner:A lady looking in the mirror, putting on her earrings, anticipating the arrival of her lover
The following is from Ramesam Vemuri's blog:Essence of Advaita -- A Question- Answer Session - Part 1/3(Excerpted from Yogavaasishta, Chapter VI: Nirvana, Book - II)Rama: Revered Master! How can the Subject (Knower) be free of the object (the known)? The thought, I am contracted, is very strongly entrenched within us. How do we reverse it?Sage Vasishta: The inanity of the mind responsible for such an illusion will fade away from a study of Self-Knowledge. The formless, eternal and tranquil liberation can be achieved by proceeding on the Knowledge Path.Rama: If a substance has several components and attributes within it, then a detailed study of those parts and properties may gradually add up to a complete knowledge about the substance. But what you are talking here is about a substance that is indivisible and without any attributes whatsoever. That is the Consciousness-Knowledge. Does the word complete ever be applicable to a description of such Knowledge?Sage Vasishta: True Knowledge cannot be a known. Nor is it possible to teach anything about Pure and Absolute Knowledge. Hence once the misapprehension owing to ignorance is eliminated, whatever remains at the end is called Complete Knowledge.Rama: What would then happen to the separate knowable component of Knowledge that was within the Knowledge? Moreover when you use the word Knowledge, does it imply the process of knowing or a means to know i.e. something causal to the act of knowing?Sage Vasishta: Knowledge implies the process of knowing. With respect to this type of Knowledge, there is no difference between what is to be known and Knowledge. They are like the movement and wind.Rama: If that were to be the case, the imaginary difference between what is to be known and Knowledge has to be something like the horn of a hare an impossibility to occur. A thing that is impossible to exist cannot be instrumental in getting any work done. But we find in the world that all works in the three time periods of past, present and future get executed by the difference between what is known and the Knowledge (what is perceived and perception).Sage Vasishta: You seem to opine that a non-existent thing can never be seen and it cannot be a cause for happiness or sorrow. But are you not able to see a dream though it does not exist? Dont you experience happiness and sorrow in a dream?
So the beingness or otherwise of a thing cannot be decided based on the criterion whether it appears or not. The decisive criterion cannot also be the things ability to cause happiness or sorrow. The real principle will have to be whether the thing can be sublated or not. If a thing cannot be sublated, we have to accept that it truly exists. If it can be sublated, it lacks existence even though it has an appearance. Sublation refers to the elimination of a thing along with its cause as, for example, the snake in the rope.
Examined from this stand, if you find a thing to be separate from you and is external to you, it has to be an imagination only. There is no possibility for the existence of a substance within you and be separate from you. Hence there is no question of any separate substance being present either inside you or outside you. Therefore, there is no scope for any transactions happening.Rama: How can this be acceptable, Sir? You, me, the five fundamental elements, the world around us are all directly seen by us. How are we to deny their existence completely?Sage Vasishta: Rama, you are attempting to establish the true beingness or otherwise of a substance based on the things in this creation and by an analysis of their cause-effect relationships. For example, you think that a pot is made out of a real lump of clay. Hence the pot, you seem to conclude, has also to be real. The approach adopted by you is okay. But then dig deeper. Go back to the very beginning of creation.
What was there prior to creation? There were neither any substances nor any tools. There was only an imagination. Hence the Macrocosm (Virat Purusha) born at the beginning of creation, the five fundamental elements etc. have got to be illusory. Therefore, the substances that appear to us have also to be illusory. It follows from this that the world and the transactions that go on within it are unreal, though we have a direct perception of them.
Read the entire excerpt here: