Author Topic: Non-Dualistic Philiosophy: Advaita Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism etc  (Read 7361 times)

silentgreen

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A brief overview of Advaita Vedanta:

#. The Ultimate Reality:
- The Absolute Reality (known as Brahman) is non-dual, is the pure subject and beyond the reach of words and thoughts, which relate only to objects.

- No phenomenal characterizations or predictions can be made of the Brahman (neti, neti). In that sense it is attributeless (nirguna).

- But being the reality and the source of all phenomenon, it is not an entity beyond experience. It is the inner-self (pratyak-atman) of all, the eternal subject. It is intuitively cognized, directly and intimately, as the pure witness Self (saksi) within by all beings.

- Brahman from the emperical point of view is said to have the nature of satyam-jnanam-anantam-brahma (absolute existence knowledge infinity) and anandam (absolute bliss). Often cit (consciousness) is used in place of jnanam (knowledge) and brahman is referred to as sat-chit-ananda.


#. The Relative Universe:
- How the relative universe rises from the absolute, none can say. However from the relative point of view it is postulated that an inscrutable veiling-projecting Maya power of Brahman, presents to us the relative universe by veiling the nature of ultimate reality.

- Maya does not infringe the absoluteness of the Brahman. Maya is a fact from the emperical point of view but Maya is not Maya to Brahman.

- The Maya power arises spontaneously from Brahman without its willing and projects the universe. This is like fire radiating heat and light spontaneously and not as an act of will.

- Due to the Maya power of Brahman, the Brahman appears to be polarized into subject and object, within the framework of space, time and causation, amenable to change and activity.

- When in the waking state, the perceiving subject considers himself as a psycho-physical being, subject to changes, the rest of the universe is also perceived as an objective physical entity with other psycho-physical beings within the framework of space, time and causation.

- When in the dream state, the perceiving subject within the dream has a dream personality, which is mental in nature, the objective universe and the beings in it are also mental within the volatile framework of space, time and causation of the dream world.

- When in deep sleep state, there is no personality of the perceiving subject, the universe is also not perceived as an object.

- When in samadhi, one realizes onseself as Atman, there is neither the universe, nor its perceiver. Only the non-dual Absolute Brahman remains as pure awareness.

- The Absolute Brahman causally associated with the totality of the relative universe is known as Isvara, the Lord and the ruler of the universe and its beings.


#. Bondage:
- The emperical person, being affected by the relative universe with its limitations, passes through various types of experiences, undertakes various activities to satisfy his desires on account of his sense of limitedness, and goes through joys and sorrows, knowledge and ignorance, birth and death etc, according to his karma. This is bondage.


#. Liberation:
- In due course, the emperical person becomes aware of the Supreme Self (Atman) within him, always calm and unaffected, the eternal witness, and that is his true nature. He gives up attachment to his emperical ego and personality. With this realization and identification with the Self, the emperical personality disintegrates and the soul (jiva) which was only the reflection of the Atman in the limited buddhi, disappears into the Supreme Self, its source, just as the reflection of the sun in the bowl of water, when the bowl is broken, disappears and the sun alone remains in all its glory. This is liberation (mukti).

- When an embodied person realizes even while living that the whole universe and its beings are manifestations of Brahman, the activities of the psycho-physical organism, with which his jiva was associated before the rise of jnana, now reflect this liberated state, the jiva remaining identified with the Witness Atman instead of the body. It is not affected by the universe, and his body functions like an actor in a drama. This is called jivanmkti, liberation-while-living.

- It is the Brahman which appears to us as all the three : Isvara-Jiva-Jagat. One cannot eliminate them as one has not created them. But one can transcend them by the realization of Atman-Brahman as one's real Self, by giving up the emperical personality - just as though one cannot avoid the effect of gravitation on earth, one can transcend it by going beyond its reach. The universe and Isvara continues to be there for the other jivas.


References:
- Sri Shankaracharya - Life and Philosophy - An Elucidative & Reconciliatory Interpretation: Swamy Mukhyananda (published by Advaita Ashrama)
Homage to the Universal Being...Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ...

silentgreen

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Re: Non-Dualistic Philiosophy: Advaita Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism etc
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2010, 11:07:57 AM »
A brief overview of Kashmiri Shaivism:

The non-dual Saiva system of Kashmir is known as Trika-Sasana or Trika-Sastra because it is a philosophy of the triad:
1. Siva
2. Sakti
2. Nara
or
1. Para (highest)
2. Parapara (identity in difference)
3. Apara (difference)

The literature of the Trika system of Kashmir falls into three categories:
1. Agama Sastra: Considered to be revealation by Siva
2. Spanda Sastra: Elaborates the principles laid down in the Siva-Sutras.
3. Prayabhijna Sastra: Expounds the Trika philosophy by arguments and discussions.

Siva-Sutras is the most important Agama of the Trika system. This was revealed to Vasugupta either towards the last part of 8th century or beginning of the 9th century.

The following is the philosophical background of the Siva-Sutras.

#. The Utimate Reality:
- The Ultimate Reality, known as Siva (not the Siva with form) is the non-relational consciousness and the changeless principle of all changes.

- Siva is referred to as prakasa-vimarsamaya. Prakasa is the eternal light of consciousness without which nothing can appear. Vimarsa is that aspect of Prakasa by which it knows itself. Vimarsa is Sakti, the svabhava (nature) of Siva. Vimarsa is the non-relational immediate awareness of I. Vimarsa is the Kartrtva Sakti (power of doership) of Siva.


#. The Relative Universe:
- It is the svabhava or the very nature of the Ultimate Reality to manifest. Without manifestation, the Ultimate Reality will be like a non-living thing like a stone.

- The powers of Parama Siva are:
1. Cit: This is the power of Self revealation, the changeless principle of all changes. In this aspect the Supreme is known as Siva.
2. Ananda or Absolute Bliss. In this aspect the Supreme is known as Sakti.
Cit and Ananda are the very svarupa or nature of Parama Siva. The rest may be considered to be his saktis.
3. Iccha or Will: In this aspect the Supreme is known as Sadasiva or Sadakhya.
4. Jnana or Knowledge: In this aspect the Supreme is known as Ishvara.
5. Kriya or the power of assuming any or every form: In this aspect the Supreme is known as Sadvidya or Suddha Vidya.

- The universe is the unmesa (opening out) or prasara (expansion) of the Supreme as Sakti.

The following appears in the course of manifestation.

- Tattvas of the Universal Experience:
1. Siva tattva: It is the initial creative movement (prathama spanda) of Parama Siva.
2. Sakti tattva: Consciousness is polarized into I (Aham) and This (Idam), Subject and Object.
3. Sadasiva or Sadakhya Tattva: The will (Iccha) to affirm the This (Idam) side of the universal experience. The experience is still hazy (asphuta). At this stage, Iccha (Will) is predominant.
4. Isvara or Aisvarya tattva: The This (Idam) side of the universal experience becomes a little more defined (sphuta). At this stage, jnana or knowledge is predominant.
5. Sadvidya or Suddhavidya tattva: The I (Aham) and the This (Idam) side of the univeral experience are equally balanced. At this stage, kriya sakti is predominant.

Upto this stage of manifestation, the svarupa or the real nature of the divine is still not veiled. Hence it is called pure order (suddhadhva).


- Tattvas of the Limited Individual Experience:
Maya tattva: Now begins the play of Maya tattva. From this stage the ideal nature of the divine is veiled. Hence it is called impure order (asuddhadva).

The products of the Maya are the five coverings:
1. Kala (kalaa): This reduces the universal authorship (sarvakartratva) of the Universal Consciousness and brings about limitation in respect of authorship or efficacy.
2. Vidya: This reduces the omniscience (sarvajnatva) of the Universal Consciousness and brings about limitation in respect of knowledge.
3. Raga: This reduces the all-satisfaction (purnatva) of the Universal Consciousness and brings about desire for things.
4. Kala (kaala): This reduces the eternity (nityatva) of the Universal Consciousness and brings about limitation in respect of time (past, present and future).
5. Niyati: This reduces the freedom (svatantrata) and pervasiveness (vyapakatva) of the Universal Consciousness and brings about limitation in respect of cause, space and form.

- Tattvas of the Limited Individual:
1. Purusa: Siva through Mayasakti limits His universal knowledge and power and becomes purusa or individual subject. Purusa is also known as anu.
2. Prakrti: Prakrti is the objective manifestation of Siva. Each purusa has a different prakrti.

Prakrti has three gunas:
1. Sattva (principle of brightness and lightness)
2. Rajas (principle of activity)
3. Tamas (principle of darkness or inertia)


- Tattvas of the Mental Operation:
Prakrti differentiates into antahkarana (the psychic apparatus), indriyas (senses) and bhutas (matter).

The Antahkarana consists of the tattvas - Buddhi, Ahamkara and Manas.

- Tattvas of the Sensible Experience:
All the tattvas of the sensible experience are the products of ahamkara.

1. The five powers of sense-perception (jnanendriyas or buddhindriyas) are:
(1) Smelling (ghranendriya)
(2) Tasting (rasanendriya)
(3) Seeing (caksurindriya)
(4) Feeling by touch (sparsendriya)
(5) Hearing (sravanendriya)

2. The five powers of actions (karmendriyas) are:
(1) Power of speaking (vagindriya)
(2) Power of handling (hastendriya)
(3) Power of locomotion (padendriya)
(4) Power of excreting (payvindriya)
(5) Power of sexual action and restfulness (upasthendriya)

3. The five tanmatras or the primary elements of perception:
(1) Sound-as-such (sabda-tanmatra)
(2) Touch-as-such (sparsa-tanmatra)
(3) Colour-as-such (rupa-tanmatra)
(4) Flavour-as-such (rasa-tanmatra)
(5) Odour-as-such (gandha-tanmatra)

- Tattvas of Materiality:
The five gross elements or panca-mahabhutas are the product of the five tanmatras.
They are:
1. Akasa is produced from sabda-tanmatra
2. Vayu is produced from sparsa-tanmatra
3. Teja (Agni) is produced from rupa-tanmatra
4. Apas is produced from rasa-tanmatra
5. Prithivi is produced from gandha-tanmatra

The Individual Self (Jiva):
- Caitanya or Siva forms the very core of the being of every individual. It is his real Self.
- Physical body (Sthula Sarira): The physical aspect of the individual consists of panca mahabhutas. There is also a prana sakti working in him. It is by this prana sakti that he is sustained and maintained.
- Subtle body (Suksma-Sarira): The antahkarana consisting of manas, buddhi and ahamkara together with the five tanmatras form a group of eight, known as puryastaka. This forms the subtle body in which the soul leaves the body at the time of death.
- Kundalini: In each individual, there is a kundalini, which is a form of sakti and lies dormant at the base of the spine.
- Each individual normally experiences the three states of waking, dreaming and deep sleep. Apart from that, there is a fourth state of consciousness known as turiya. This is the consciousness of Siva and is pure cidananda.


#. Bondage:
The bondage of the individual is due to:
- Innate ignorance or anava mala, due to which Universal Consciousness is reduced to an "anu" or a limited creature. It comes about by the limitation of the Iccha sakti of the Supreme.

- Mayiya mala is the limited condition brought about by Maya. It brings about the consciousness of difference owing to the differing limiting adjuncts of the body etc (bhinna vedya pratha). This comes about by the limitation of jnana sakti of the Supreme.

- Karma mala is the limiting condition brought about by the vasanas or residual traces of actions done under the influence of desire. The force of these vasanas carries the jiva from one life to another.


#. Liberation:
- Liberation means the recognition (pratyabhijna) of one's true nature which means the original, innate pure I-consciousness.

- The highest attainment however is that of Siva Consciousness in which the entire universe appears as I or Siva. This comes about by Saktipata - the descent of Divine Sakti or anugraha (Divine Grace).


References:
- Siva Sutras - the Yoga of Supreme Identity by Jaideva Singh (published by Motilal Banarsidass Publishers)
Homage to the Universal Being...Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ...

Subramanian.R

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Re: Non-Dualistic Philiosophy: Advaita Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism etc
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2010, 08:57:31 AM »

Dear silentgreen,

I am thankful to you for this excellent post, one of those of rare
excellence that appear in this Forum.  In fact, Saiva Siddhantam,
of South India borrows from Kashmiri Savism and Advaitam.  When
I had been to Tiruvannamalai for 2 days on 19th and 20th, I was
speaking to Sri J.Jayaraman of the Centenary Library, in the afternoon.  He said that Saiva Siddantam, Kashmiri Saivism, Veera
Savism of Karnataka, all borrow the ideas only from advaitam and the malaparibagam and iruvinai oppu (i.e. the cleaning of the three
malas, impurities, ego, kanma (karma) and maya and treating
the dyads (iru vinai) as same by the sadhaka are the connecting threads for these with Advaitam.  Both Sri Lalita Sahasranamam and
Sri Soundarya Lahari of Sri Sankara, touch these aspects.  That is why, it is said of Sri Sankara that he was an advaiti in heart but
sakta or saiva siddhanti in practice.  Ozhivil Odukkam (Staying
in the Remains) of Kannudaiya VaLLalar (which Bhagavan has
quoted in His conversations and also in some of His works) also
contains these aspects of Saiva Siddhantam/Kashimiri Saivism
with the ultimate of aim of sadhaka to attain the non dual
consciousness. 

While Jnana Sambandhar, Tirunavukkarasar and Sundaramurty, leans heavily towards Saiva Siddhantam, Saint Manikkavachagar leans heavily towards advaitam.  Incidentally, one of the theories about Saint Manikkavachagar is that he came from North India after throughly understanding various aspects of Saivism and then wrote his two works (Tiruvachakam and Tirukovaiyar) with accent towards Advaitam.  (The Age of Saint Manikkavachagar, by Swami Marai Malai AdigaL).

Arunachala Siva.         

Nagaraj

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Re: Non-Dualistic Philiosophy: Advaita Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism etc
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2010, 10:49:13 AM »
Infact, Tirumoolar, the don of Saiva Siddhanta of South, Sri Tirumoolar, whom we owe a lot, is from Kashmir.
॥ शांतमात्मनि तिष्ट ॥
Remain quietly in the Self.
~ Vasishta

ramanaduli

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Re: Non-Dualistic Philiosophy: Advaita Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism etc
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2010, 07:50:29 AM »
Dear Subramaniyan ji

Saiva Siddhantham tells Sivam means Pasupathi. All jivas all are pasu and Siva i.e. shiva is pathi. All jivas should reach pathi. means advaitam is not it. THEY SAY ERANDARA KLAPPADHU.  The same thing Manikkavachkar says and He attained in the same way in Chidambaram. I have not studied Thevaram fully. Rarely I have a chance of hearing the lectures in the temple.

Thrumoolar's story was posted by our Subramaniyan ji long time ago. He comes under Siddhar lineage. All siddhas are like sufis with medical knowledge. Some siddhas do some miracles for the sake of man kind. All their poems talk about Almighty, sivam and advaitam. They never follow rituals. In tamil nadu many people follow siddhas system.
Generally people in south say all siddhas are living in Thruvannamalai. Many people say during giri valam they can be blessed by siddhas who are present in sushma roopam.


Ramanaduli

silentgreen

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Re: Non-Dualistic Philiosophy: Advaita Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism etc
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2010, 07:02:26 PM »
Philosophy of Guru Gorakshanath:

#. Yoga and Philosophy:
- The Absolute is variously conceived by various thinkers and they refute each other's views. The Absolute Truth, which is the Soul of the universe and the Soul of every individual being, unveils its true character to the innermost illumined consciousness of a perfect Yogi in the deepest supra-intellectual transcendent state of Samadhi.

- When a Yogi returns from the illumined state of Samadhi to the normal plane of phenomenal experience, the deep impression of his Samadhi experience exercises a wonderful enlightening influence upon his normal mind and intellect and behaviour. The enlightened Yogis become free from all kinds of dogmatism and bigotry and narrow outlook. They look upon all men and all affairs of the world from a spiritual point of view and live in the world as embodiments of the highest wisdom and universal love and compassion.

- Gorakhnath was an enlightened Mahayogi, and not a philosopher in the commonly accepted meaning of the term. He did not attach any primary importance to metaphysical speculations and controversies as a means to the realisation of the Ultimate Truth. The ultimate basis of his
philosophy was his and other enlightened yogis' supramental and supra-intellectual experience in the highest samadhi state.


#. Ultimate Reality:
- An enlightened Mahayogi does not require any conception for being sure of the validity of his transcendent experience. But he cannot but take the help of intellectual conception to explain his experience to others.

- Gorakhnath asserts that from the view-point of transcendent experience, in which the Absolute Truth reveals Itself in Its perfect self-shining nature and the individual consciousness is wholly identified with It, there is no question of the origination of the cosmic order with the plurality of individual existences, since they are all unified in Its transcendent nature. Still for the satisfaction of the rational demand of the people of the normal planes of phenomenal experience, this world-process must have to be accounted for from the nature of the Absolute Reality, and accordingly an adequate intellectual conception of the Absolute has to be formed.

- Gorakshanath conceives the Ultimate Reality accordingly as Para-Sambit with Nija-Sakti; Absolute Consciousness or Absolute Spirit eternally possessed of infinite unique Power for self-expression in the form of a boundless phenomenal cosmic order evolving countless orders of finite and transitory existences in time and space and also harmonising them into one whole.


#. How the world originates:
- The same Absolute Reality viewed as the transcendent self-shining self-perfect differenceless and changeless Spirit is Siva, and as revealing and enjoying Himself freely and eternally in an ever-changing diversified phenomenal cosmic order is Sakti.

- In the ultimate samadhi-Experience in which the cosmic plurality is merged in absolute unity He is realised in His transcendent aspect as Siva, and in the enlightened phenomenal experience in which the cosmic plurality appears as an objective reality He is realised in His self-manifesting dynamic aspect as Sakti. The two aspects are in eternal union.

- Shakti is Sat-Cid-Ananda-mayee Mahasakti, i.e. self-manifesting self-diversifying all-harmonising all-unifying ever-active Dynamic Sat-Cid-Ananda. The cosmic system is conceived, not as Cid-Vivarta, but as Cid-Vilasa. The Sakti is conceived, not as avaranavikshepatmika, but as Prakasa-Vimarsatmika.

- Gorakhnath and his school teach the truth-seekers to appreciate the world as Cid-Vilasa, as Saundarya-Lahari, as Ananda-Lahari, and not to renounce it out of disgust or to think of it as an evil. Renunciation has to be practised for the purpose of the realisation of the Ideal of Absolute Sivahood in his Divine World.

- Gorakhnath and his school are upholders of Sat-Karya-Vada. They accordingly hold that before creation the whole world of effects exists in an absolutely unmanifested and undifferentiated state in the nature of the Unique Power of Siva and that destruction or dissolution consists in the merging of all the diversities in the absolute unity of the same Power (Sakti).

- The temporal process of creation and dissolution, of evolution and involution, has no absolute beginning or end in time.

- The self-unfoldment of Divine Sakti is perfectly free and delightful. Sakti's self-unfoldment is described as through five stages, Nija, Para, Apara, Sukshma, Kundalini.

- The gradual self-unfoldment of Sakti within the spiritual transcendent nature of the Absolute Spirit, Siva, gives birth to the Supreme Spiritual Body of Siva, called Parapinda. The birth of Parapinda means the self-manifestation of the Absolute Spirit as the Supreme Individual Parama Purusha with the full consciousness of all His eternal infinite glorious powers and attributes. The Supra-personal Spirit becomes a perfectly self-conscious Personality, Brahma becomes Iswara.

- The whole universe is conceived by him (Gorakshanath) as one organism consisting of countless orders of organisms, one Samasti-Pinda consisting of innumerable Vyasti-Pindas. This universe is the self-embodiment of the Absolute Spirit, Siva, by virtue of the Gradual selfunfoldment of His Sakti.

- Gorakhnath describes the Para-Pinda (also known as Anadi-Pinda as well as Adi-Pinda) of Siva as consisting of five forms of spiritual consciousness, all shining at the same time without overshadowing each other in His all comprehensive Divine consciousness; viz. Aparamparam, Paramapadam, Sunyam, Niranjanam, Paramatma. Anadi-Pinda is described as having the characters of Paramananda, Prabodha, Cid-udaya, Prakasa, Sohambhava.

- Siva as Adya-Pinda, the Cosmic Purusha, evolves from within Himself, through the further self-unfoldment of His Sakti, a Physical Cosmic Body, extending in space and changing in time, and makes it an integral part of His all-comprehending and all-enjoying Self-Consciousness. The universe, which was ideally real in the nature of Adya-Pinda, becomes physically and objectively real as the Cosmic Body of Siva, and this Body is called Maha-Sakara-Pinda. Siva with His infinite and eternal Maha-Sakti is seen by a Mahayogi as immanent in and revealing Himself through all the diversities of this physical order. A Mahayogi looks upon and loves this world as the sacred Divine Body.

- From Adya-Pinda evolves Maha-Akasa, from Maha-Akasa evolves Maha-Vayu, from Maha-Vayu evolves Maha Tejas, from Maha-Tejas evolves Maha-Salila, from Maha Salila, Maha-Prithwi. These five Tattwas (Basic Elements) are gradual stages of self-unfoldment of the Divine Sakti in more
and more complex physical forms and they are all organised by the same Sakti into an unlimited and ever-continuous physical embodiment of Siva. To Gorakhnath and the Siddha-Yogis, this Physical Cosmic Body is the grossest and most complicated and diversified form of free self-manifestation of the Absolute Spirit through the gradual self-unfoldment of His infinite and eternal Spiritual Power, and hence it is essentially a spiritual entity.

- In relation to this Cosmic Order the Supreme Spirit reveals Himself principally in the forms of eight Divine Personalities, which are called Ashta-Murti of Maha-Sakara-Pinda viz. Siva, Bhairava, Srikantha, SadaSiva, Iswara, Rudra, Vishnu and Brahma.

- In the Cosmic Body of Siva various orders of phenomenal existences are gradually evolved, and these are conceived as distinct interrelated worlds or Lokas.
1. First, there is the world of material bodies and physical forces, governed by what are known as natural laws. This is Jada-Jagat.
2. Secondly, there is the world of Life and Vital Forces, governed by biological laws. This is Prana-Jagat. Life and vital forces are embodied with and manifested through material bodies, but life transcends matter and exerts regulative influence upon its phenomena.
3. Thirdly, there is the world of Mind, Mano-Jagat. All phenomena of empirical consciousness are expressions of mind. Mental phenomena are manifested through living physical bodies, but Mind transcends Matter and Life and uses them as its instruments.
4. Fourthly, there is the world of Reason or Intelligence, Buddhi. Buddhi is higher than Mind, and it is manifested in the acts of discriminating between valid and invalid knowledge, correct and incorrect thought, and in the urge for the attainment of truth. Buddhi exercises a regulative and enlightening influence upon Mind. Cosmic Buddhi with Cosmic Manas and Cosmic Prana is all-pervading.
5. Fifthly, there is a still higher world, the world of Moral Consciousness, the world of Dharma. Dharma is revealed in the form of some Ideal of goodness or righteousness or moral perfection, having the inherent claim to regulate and elevate all natural phenomena of matter and life and mind and reason towards the Ideal.
6. Sixthly, there is the world of Rasa, Aesthetic Order. This is specially revealed to the Aesthetic Consciousness of man, to which the whole universe is a universe of Beauty.
7. Seventhly, there is the world of Bliss, Ananda. Ananda is the real and eternal nature of the Supreme Spirit and it underlies all self manifestations of the Spirit.

To different orders of phenomenal consciousnesses different orders of existences are revealed. The infinite richness of Maha-Sakara-Pinda is unfathomable. Every world has adhyatmika, adhidaivika and adhibhoutika aspects.

- The plane of Brahma is the lowest and grossest of all and is most closely related to the gross world of our sensuous experience. Gorakhnath traces the evolution of the individual existences and consciousnesses of this world from the Conscious Will (Avalokana) of Brahma. This Conscious Will is manifested in the form of Prakriti-Pinda, from which all individual bodies (Vyasti-Pindas) are evolved. Every individual body is a particularised manifestation of Prakriti-Pinda and ultimately of the Cosmic Body of Siva.


#. The human body:
- The human body is realised as an epitome of the entire Cosmic Body of Siva. It is in and through the human body that the Divine Sakti, Who in the process of cosmic self-manifestation comes down from the highest transcendent spiritual plane of absolute unity and bliss step by step to the lowest phenomenal material plane of endless diversities and imperfections, ascends again by means of self-conscious processes of Yoga and Jnana and Bhakti to the transcendent spiritual plane and becomes perfectly and blissfully united with the Supreme Spirit, Siva. Man with his developed individuality can experience Siva as his own true Soul as well as the true Soul of the universe.

- From the standpoint of yogtc discipline, Gorakhnath conceives
the human body as consisting of:
1. The gross material body called Bhuta-Pinda:
The Bhuta-Pinda is constituted of the five gross physical elements, purposefully organised by the Creative Will of Brahma with life-power and mind-power immanent in the organism and regulating teleologically the functions of its various organs.

2. The mental body described as Antaha-Karana-pancaka:
The individual minds are individualised self-manifestations of the Cosmic Mind in relation to and apparent dependence upon individual living bodies. Every individual human mind is manifested in five forms according to functions, viz. Manas, Buddhi, Ahankara, Chitta and Caitanya.

3. Kula-pancaka:
Kula is here interpreted by Gorakhnath as the forces which exercise their directive influence from behind the scene upon the psychophysical phenomena and give special inclinations and aptitudes to them It is conceived as of five forms, viz. Sattwa, Rajas, Tamas, Kala and Jeeva.

4. Vyaktipancaka:
Vyakti pancaka refer to the five forms of self-expression of the individual mind and they are classified as Iccha, Kriya, Maya, Prakriti and Vak. The forms of Vak are Para, Pasyanti, Madhyama, Vaikhari and Matrika.

5. Pratyaksha:
By pratyaksha-Karana Gorakhnath indicates the efficient and material causes which practically contribute to the maintenance and development and also renewal of the indvidual body. He enumerates then as, Kama, Karma, Candra, Surya and Agni.

6. Nadi-samsthana:
The knowledge of Nadi-Samsthana or the nervous system is of great importance to yogis. Of countless Nadis, ten are specially mentioned. Of these, three are highly important, viz. Ida, Pingala and Sushumna. Sushumna is the most important from yogic view-point.

7. Dasa-Vayu:
Vayu or Prana-Sakti is essentially one, but it is conceived as tenfold, according to different functions it performs in different parts of the living organism. Of the tenfold Vayu, Prana and Apana are of special importance for yogic discipline.

#. The esoteric aspects of human body:
- For the purpose of attaining true enlightenment about the inner nature of the sacred human body, Gorakhnath regards it essential to acquire insight into nine cakras, sixteen adharas, three lakshyas, five vyomans.

- The nine cakras are conceived as different stations in the central Sushumna-Nadi, which is called Brahma-Marga. These are centres of psycho-vital forces and indicate different planes of esoteric experience in the path of yogic discipline. Cakras are enumerated by Gorakhnath somewhere as nine and somewhere as seven. The Kundalini Sakti, the Supreme Divine Power, lies sleeping like a coiled serpent in the lowest Muladhara Cakra of every human body, becomes awakened with the awakenment of the spiritual consciousness of every individual, rises step by step through yogic discipline to higher and higher Cakras (higher and higher planes of spiritual illumination), blesses individual consciousness with various kinds of occult experiences and miraculous powers in the particular Cakras, and finally ascends to the highest Cakra, the plane of the perfect blissful union of Sakti with Siva or Brahma, in which the individual consciousness becomes absolutely united with Universal Consciousness, the Absolute Sat-Cid-ananda.

- After describing the Cakras, Gorakhnath describes what he calls Adharas and for the students of Yoga he enumerates them as sixteen. By Adharas he refers to the principal seats of the vital and psychical functions, which have to be brought under control and then transcended by means of appropriate methods of yogic discipline.

- Having given lessons on the sixteen Adharas, Gorakhnath imparts instruction on the three kinds of Lakshyas, internal and external and non-located. Lakshya means an object upon which a yogi should fix his attention temporarily for practising concentration of psychovital energy with the ultimate view of elevating it to the highest spiritual plane.

- Lastly, Gorakhnath gives lessons on Vyoma or Akasa or Sunya, which, though really one, he enumerates as five for the sake of the practice of concentration.


-- to be continued -->
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silentgreen

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Re: Non-Dualistic Philiosophy: Advaita Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism etc
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2010, 07:04:54 PM »
-- continued from previous post (Philosophy of Guru Gorakshanath) ....

#. Individual Soul:
- The individual soul and the individual body are both phenomenal self-manifestations of the transcendent Supreme Spirit. The soul is evidently a spiritual manifestation, and the body is a physical manifestation.

- The soul is distinguished not only from the physical body, but also from life, mind, ego, intellect, moral and aesthetic consciousness, and even spiritual consciousness. It is self-luminous witness to them, the innermost dynamic centre of all their operations, and it realises and enjoys itself in and through them.

- The individual soul is ultimately one with Siva, the Supreme Spirit, Who in His phenomenal cosmic play freely enjoys Himself as the plurality of individual souls in relation to the various orders of individual bodies.

- The souls are not really touched by the joys and sorrows and bondages and limitations and changes of the respective individual bodies. So long as Avidya or Ignorance prevails over the phenomenal consciousness, these are falsely attributed to the souls.

#. Liberation:
- As a yogi draws upward in a systematic way his psycho-vital energy to higher and higher adharas and cakras and concentrates his consciousness upon deeper truths unveiled therein, the individual body is gradually realised as liberated from the grossness and impurity and spatio-temporal limitations and imperfections of its normal material nature and hence as a true spiritual entity. When the consciousness is adequately refined and illumined, the whole is experienced in every part, the entire cosmic system is experienced in every individual body, Maha-Sakara-Pinda is realised in Vyasti-Pinda. This realisation of the Cosmic Body in the individual body is called by Gorakhnath the true knowledge of the body (Pinda-Sambitti).

- The realisation of Atma or the true Self is conceived as the real nature of transcendent experience and the essential nature of Moksha. The perfect realisation of Sivahood or Brahmahood by the individual soul through yoga is the Supreme Ideal.


References:
- Philosophy of Gorakhnath With Goraksha-Vacana-Sangraha by Akshaya Kumar Banerjee
Homage to the Universal Being...Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ...

Subramanian.R

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Re: Non-Dualistic Philiosophy: Advaita Vedanta, Kashmir Shaivism etc
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2010, 06:03:34 PM »

Dear silentgreen,

I am yet to read your detailed article on Kashmiri Saivism and
Guru Gorakshanath.   I shall seek your clarifications, if any,
after reading the post in detail.

Arunachala Siva.   

silentgreen

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Prakasha and Vimarsha
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2010, 02:00:20 PM »
Prakasha and Vimarsha

The first aspect of Absolute Consciousness is Prakasha. Prakasha is the Light of Consciousness, the pure luminosity, the unchanging ground and essence of everything that appears. Everything appears as their own specific nature, but it is made apparent by the Light of Consciousness, and it has the Light of Consciousness as their source.

The universe is nothing but the shining of the Light of Consciousness within itself. This is an important statement, as nothing exists outside of it. Consciousness becomes manifest in the radiant vibration of this Light. Although shining as all things, and creating diversity, there is no division within itself. A created object just has a form it assumes, and is not a separate entity.

The second aspect of Absolute Consciousness is Vimarsha, self-awareness, or the act of reflective awareness. In an entity, thought-constructs obscure the light of the subjects' immediate perception. Thus its awareness shifts from pure consciousness to objective consciousness. Thus we experience the objective world. it is an awareness of the images that appear within the mirror of Light.

Consciousness must reflect back on itself to know itself and what appears within it. Vimarsha, or self-awareness, is the power of consciousness by virtue of which it can understand or perceive itself, and examine the events that occur within it. Through this awareness, the Light knows itself to be the sole reality and so rests in itself. It enjoys perfect freedom and it is satisfied in the knowledge that it is all that exists, be it subject, object or means of knowledge.

We often talk here in terms of universal consciousness, but the same holds true for individual I-consciousness (Aham), which is formed by the powers of the Absolute. By contemplating its own nature, consciousness assumes the form of all the planes of existence from the subtlest to the most gross. The power of reflection is thus the inherent creative freedom of the Light of Consciousness to either turn in on itself introspectively and be free of its outer forms, or move out of itself to view its outer manifestations. In harmony with the oscillation (Spanda) of awareness between these two polarities, the universe of manifestation is incessantly renewed and is the essence of the vitality of its pulsation.

Individual and universal consciousness are not two separate things, they are one. The same process operates in both. The only difference between them is that in the case of individual consciousness, these processes are restricted or limited representations of the maximally expanded operation of universal consciousness.


References:
- Doctrine of Vibration, An Analysis of the doctrines and Practices of Kashmir Shaivism, by Mark S.G. Dyczkowski
Homage to the Universal Being...Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ... Om Shanti ...