Author Topic: Misconceptions about Advaita - David Frawley - Mountain Path -Aradhana 2004  (Read 4772 times)


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Which Self is Being Examined?

Self Inquiry is an examination into our true nature, which is pure consciousness beyond body and mind.  This is a very
different process from psychological analysis, which is an inquiry into our personal historical ego based individuality.
Our true Self is our universal being, a conscious present not only in humans but in animals, plants of existence beyond
the physical.

Another misconception in modern Advaita is turning Self Inquiry into an examination of the personal self, our fears and
desires, and trying to make us feel better about i.  Neo Advaita in particular gets mixed up with western psychology and can
get caught in examining the mind rather than going beyond the mind.  Advaita is not about psychological happiness but
about our negating our psychology.

Finding One's Own Path.

The spiritual path is different for every individual.  A true teacher teaches each student differently according to their unique
nature.  They will not necessarily teach Advaita to everyone, at all times or in the same manner.  If we look at our great gurus,
their disciples are not simply imitations of them, but retain their own individuality. Note Sri Ramana's main disciples Muruganar   
and Ganapati Muni. 

The West has a tendency to standardize, stereotype, mass produce  and even franchise teachings.  The neo Advaita movement,
like the Western Yoga movement, is affected by this cultural compulsion as well, and often gives the same teachings en masse.
True Advaita is not a teaching that can be given uniformly to people of all temperaments.  It is often pursued in solitude, silence
and retreat and can never become a thing of the market place.

Certainly Advaita Vedanta us bound to continue as an important influence in not only individual sadhana but also in world thought.
But it has man depths and subtleties that require great concentration and dedication in order to understand and experience.


Arunachala Siva.