There is really no separate form when one inquiries into the matter; but separateness exists for those who do not inquire but accept appearances. One may say I am a white; he is a black. But there is no difference between the bodies in reality. Everyone exists in each other’s waking experience. And waking experience is created out of single substance, which is the consciousness and it is the true self.
The soul is the source of the experience of diversity [waking/dream]. Therefore soul pervades in everything and everywhere in the three states, as their formless substance and witness. Thus, there is no second thing exists, other than the soul, because everything is created, sustained and finally dissolves as Atman, which is in the form of consciousness, thus consciousness alone is ultimate reality. That is why Sri,Sankara said: Atman itself is Brahman. That is consciousness is ultimate truth.
It is immaterial what ideas one may have of the universe. Anything that one says is only an illusion, because he saying it within the duality [illusion]. The Atman only witnesses. One may be president of prime minster or god men, but when their waking disappears than the soul[consciousness] becomes naked and non-dual.
Non dual truth is reasoned and proved truth; mysticism relies on personal experience as truth; scholasticism takes personal interpretation as truth yogi thinks his Samadhi as ultimate truth. Path of wisdom aims at the unification of the whole experience of diversity. Scholasticism is an excellent exercise for the mind but not as a means to truth.
The argument that any teacher or mystic or priest has got so many followers and therefore there must be some truth in their teaching, is a fallacy. It proves only what I am often saying, that any fool can find a number of greater fools to follow him.
That is why Sri, Sankara says in Viveka Chudamani:-
58. Loud speech consisting of a shower of words, the skill in expounding the Scriptures, and likewise erudition - these merely bring on a little personal enjoyment to the scholar, but are no good for Liberation.
59. The study of the Scriptures is useless so long as the highest Truth is unknown, and it is equally useless when the highest Truth has already been known.
60. The Scriptures consisting of many words are a dense forest which merely causes the mind to ramble. Hence men of wisdom should earnestly set about knowing the true nature of the Self.
61. For one who has been bitten by the serpent of Ignorance, the only remedy is the knowledge of Brahman. Of what avail are the Vedas and (other) Scriptures, Mantras (sacred formulae) and medicines to such a one?
62. A disease does not leave off if one simply utter the name of the medicine, without taking it; (similarly) without direct realisation one cannot be liberated by the mere utterance of the word Brahman.
People get worried by many things; his mind gets distracted, their family may trouble him. For such a people the practice of yoga will confer peace and thus provide useful preparation of mind, prior to taking up the course of thinking and reasoning which alone lead to truth. Yoga is helpful in preparation to pursuit of truth.
Only when the mind is made sharp as a razor then only it can grasp the non-dual truth. Inquiry and reasoning on the true base takes away all those things which are not truth, and, if the mind is sharp enough, eventually reveals truth.
The ordinary people want this God or that, wants this belief or that, and thus renders themselves unfit for inquiry and reasoning because they are prejudiced at the start. Therefore they must get rid of these "wants" first: when they have done so, they are called level-headed.
Yoga as a mind-leveling and conflict-removing tool should not be carried to excess; otherwise it will create new illusions and fancies and hallucinations.
Seeker of truth has to develop an attitude of impartial cautious critical examination to be fit for pursuit of truth.
The seeker must be level-headed before it can profitably understand the non-dual truth; otherwise its inquiries will turn into conflicts between ideas which please and ideas which are true. Yoga helps to remove of these conflicts of the novices.
Path of wisdom is the opposite of Yoga, because it wants one to exercise his mind and get at non dual truth by discrimination. People are interpreting scriptures, faiths etc. by reason, more or less imperfect but emotionally are attached to the scriptures, and they get upset if anyone say anything about their scriptures. Such mind-sets are still in primitive stage, it takes a long time for them to understand the scriptures are not the means for self-realization.
If one talks of sleep or Samadhi, he is still in duality for he knows that he was in those states only afterwards when awake. Hence Yoga, like Sankhya teaches duality, not non-duality.
That is why Sri, Sankara says in Viveka Chudamani:-
56. Neither by Yoga, nor by Sankhya, nor by work, nor by learning, but by the realisation of one's identity with Brahman is Liberation possible, and by no other means.
There are unfortunately so many different kinds of Yoga. But no yogi uses reason based on the soul. Yoga means killing reason, thus it is no use in to acquire non dual wisdom. Yoga is good as a preparation only.
Those who resort to gurus and ashrams of a mystic character for peace do not know that they can get the same result by taking some opium pills
The pseudo-sage who distinguishes himself from others is evincing duality and thinking only of the body, i.e. ignorance. On the other hand if a sanyassin attains Gnana, he will not give up his yellow cloth but remain so, but henceforth devote his life to service of humanity.
“Every fool has got a greater fool to admire him." Hence admiration is of no value as a guide. The yogi who is concerned with breathing exercises, holding his nose and postures is merely concerned with his body and unfit for Gnana.
Mundaka Upanishad 1:2:8
“Remaining in the fold of ignorance and thinking “we are extremely wise and learned,” the fools with boastful nature ramble about like the blind led by the blind alone.”
Mundaka Upanishad 3:2:3
“The weak and timid cannot realize the Self. Self-Realization is not possible through intellect or hearing spiritual discourse. One who welcomes God in every activity, through a thorough controlled and disciplined life, to him also the Soul is revealed."
Mundaka Upanishad 3:2:3
The Soul cannot be realized by the weak and timid.
It is said in Mandukya that even the Gods cannot find out who is a Gnani, because he bears no external mark. Neither nudity nor the yellow robe has anything to do with him.
Sri Krishna himself says that he can do nothing to make a man intelligent straight away. The adepts give prasad, blessing, initiations, mantrams, etc. only to confer temporary peace of mind, to help you to get rid of worries, but not to confer Gnana. The capacity to receive it, must first be inborn in man by evolutionary degree.
The teachers leave their experience behind in scriptures and books, as a legacy to posterity. They know that books are illusory, but they also know they will be useful as a means of progress from lower to higher ideas of truth.
Chandogya Upanishad:- "When a person is sleeping soundly, free from dreams, with a still mind, that is the Self, fearless and deathless. That is Brahman, the supreme."
In dualistic philosophies the imaginary god is made as creator basing on cause and effect theory. Then the doubt natural arises, who is the cause of the creator. The creator is dependent on creation for his existence. Without the creation the creator ceases to exist. Thus the dualistic theory holds no water, because it is based on mere imagination and speculation, which they try to prove it on citing the mythological stories and doctrine of code of conducts. When the self is not the body then all these dualistic ideologies hold no water. Therefore the devotional paths, which are based on the human conducts, are not the means for TRUTH –REALIZATION.
Even the religious based non-dualism is not the means for truth realization, because their preaching is based on the non-duality but their practice is based on dualistic view point. Therefore, it is difficult to get TRUTH –REALIZATION from conduct based orthodox non-dualism. Thus it looks like the real essence of non-dualism is lost or destroyed in the past by the orthodox oriented priest craft and propagated and injected only priest-crafted non-dualism, to the mass, the reason best known to the masters of the past. Therefore, it is impossible to come out of all these priest crafted confusions in one life time. Through orthodox non-dualism it is impossible to get truth realization.
There is no need to collect all these baggage of confusions, if one is seeking truth, nothing but truth. The guru is necessary only in religious and yogic paths, but guru is not necessary in pursuit of truth. Path of truth is a personal path and it is the path of verification. But in religion and yoga the verification is not allowed. Blind faith is main ingredient in belief system and yoga. Gurudom is playing with words because maybe the meaning is floating somewhere in between the spaces of words...
People who think themselves to be in a position to air their knowledge forget one basic fact, namely that they go by mere appearances. Someone expounds knowledge and the one who receives it begins to ape the person from whom he has received the knowledge. They never question the validity of that knowledge.
Thus, whatever the guru wears, he will wear; whatever mannerisms the guru affects, he will imitate. Thus, they only learn to pretend. And all so-called accumulated knowledge" is mere speculation based on the physical self or waking entity or ego. This is how tradition became established and traditional forms of worship came into being and passed it on the one generation to the next. All these have nothing to do with the Self- Knowledge.
Whatever One has heard, whatever he has been told, will have no value as far as the ultimate point of view. Whether one accepts the fact that, the only knowledge that he really has is the knowledge that he exists, that is consciousness. Other than that, whatever knowledge he thinks he has as a person, is part of the illusion, something acquired, based on the illusory consciousness.
The realization of truth is not intellectual understanding. Self- Realization is about realizing the fact that, the self is not physical, but it is the formless soul or consciousness. Intellectual, logical, analytical perspective is based on the false self, will not help the seeker to reach his non-dual destination. The truth is beyond intellectual understanding and only the serious seekers who are free from preconceived accumulated ideas can get there.
The seeker of truth moves ahead by verifying the facts and by removing all the obstacles and reaches his non-dual destination.