Sunday, December 11, 2016
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December is a month for study of Jnana Yoga (Advaita Vedanta). Jnana Yoga moves you toward self-realization through discrimination, reason, and satyagraha (insistence on Truth). The goal is freedom from limitation (mukti). Our teachers say that all our miseries in life are caused by seeing inaccurately. As a jnana yogi, you may break through this delusion and see only the Truth of Being everywhere. This is Brahmajnana.
Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna, toward the end of Chapter 40:
MASTER: “…One can attain (Brahmajnana) by following the path of knowledge, that is to say, discrimination. … (Jnanis) analyse the world through the process of ‘Not this, not this’; it is māyā. When the world vanishes, only the jivas, that is to say, so many egos, remain.
Each ego may be likened to a pot. Suppose there are ten pots filled with water, and the sun is reflected in them. How many suns do you see?”
A DEVOTEE: “Ten reflections. Besides, there certainly exists the real Sun.” …
MASTER: “All right. Suppose you break nine pots. How many suns do you see now?”
DEVOTEE: “One reflected sun. But there certainly exists the real sun.”
MASTER (to Girish Ghosh): “What remains when the last pot is broken?”
GIRISH: “That real sun, sir.”
MASTER: “No. What remains cannot be described. What is remains. How will you know there is a real sun unless there is a reflected sun? …”
Swami Vivekananda wrote, “Speech cannot hold Thee, nor mind. Yet without Thee, we think not nor speak.”
And Swami Prabhavananda said, “The chosen ideal (the aspect of the Divine Being to which you are drawn) is you, yourself, no different. Learn to feel that living presence.”
The self that you know, that you see in a mirror, is a reflection of that which “cannot be described.” The implications of what these statements may mean for you as a spiritual aspirant are explored and discussed in this talk.