The seeker has to find out: - ‘What is this ‘I’?’, in order to realize the nature of the mind (I).***
Sage Sri,Sankara said:~Talk as much philosophy as you like, worship as many gods as you please, observe ceremonies and sing devotional hymns, but liberation will never come, even after a hundred aeons, without realizing the Oneness.
There are three kinds of aspirants: ~
1.The ordinary ones who desire the transitory heaven and other pleasures obtained as a result of ritual sacrifices follow religion.
2.Middling intellects who desire peace and well being follow yogic path or meditation.
3.The advanced seeker who seeks to know the ultimate truth follow the Atmaimc path. The Atmic path with its emphasis on the Advaitic wisdom is meant for those who wish to go beyond the form, time and space.
Only through deeper self-search beginners and intermediates gradually become aware ‘what is what’. Only after they have realized the fact that the ‘Self’ is not ‘I’ but the ‘Self’ is the Soul, which is present in the form of the consciousness they ready for the inner journey towards the reality , which is beyond the form, time and space.
Upanishad:~ They alone in this world are endowed with the highest wisdom who are firm in their conviction of the sameness and birthlessness of Atman. The ordinary man does not understand their way.(Chapter IV — Alatasanti Prakarana 95-P-188 in Upanishads by Nikilanada)
There is no need to study Vedanta. The seeker has to find out: - ‘What is mind or ‘I’?’, ‘What is the substance of the mind (I)?’ And what is the source if the mind? (I), in order to realize the nature of the mind (I).
The non-duality has to be grasped in the midst of the duality (waking experience). When one is Soul-centric than he will realize ‘what is truth’ and ‘what is untruth’ and ‘what is reality’ and what is unreality’ and able establish himself in the truth and able to view and judge, the three states, on the base of the Soul, the innermost Self. The Soul which is present in the form of the consciousness is ultimate truth or Brahman.
It is unfortunate people are stuck with their accumulated ideas based on the false Self, and imagine about nonduality and say nothing exist other than the source. But a Gnani says everything exists (illusion) but everything is created out of single stuff and that single stuff is the consciousness. Everything arises from the consciousness and subsides as consciousness. Thus, the whole diversity (three states) has no relevance, on the standpoint of the consciousness as the Self.
Everything (illusion) is nothingness (consciousness) realizing the three states are created out nothingness (Consciousness). Nothingness is the nature of the consciousness because there is no second thing exists other than itself.
Religion, mysticism, and yoga are meant for the mass mindset, which are incapable investigating and verifying their inherited beliefs. The path of wisdom is to get the pure essence of non-duality or Advaita.
The ultimate truth is based on the formless Soul, the innermost Self. Soul-centric reasoning leads one to non-dual Self-awareness. Therefore, there is a need to rectify the reasoning base from ego base to Soul base to understand, assimilate and realize the Non-dualistic or Advaitic truth.
Sage Sri, Ramana Maharishi:~ Self –inquiry is not the critical study of the scriptures. When the source is reached, the mind (I) gets merged into it. The result of Self-knowledge is cure for getting rid of the ignorance. It is the highest of all the results. There is nothing greater than it. there is no necessity to study the scriptures to acquire Self-knowledge.
Sage Sri, Ramana Maharishi says:~
Q by D:- Is not necessary to study the Vedas or at least the Prasthanatraya (the Bhagavad Gita, Dasopanishad and Brahma Sutras, all with commentaries)to ensure firm realization?
Sage Sri, Ramana Maharishi: ~No. Do you need all that to see yourself? All that is intellectual wealth, useful in explaining doubts and difficulties if others rise them or if you yourself encounter them in the course of thinking. But to attain realization, all that is not necessary. You want fresh water to drink, but you do not require all the water of the river Ganges to quench your thirst.(Page 111/112 of Practical guide to know yourself c/e by A.R.N).
This surely indicates Sri, Ramana Maharishi indicates the path of truth is independent path nothing to with the religion and scriptures.
Even the Upanishads clearly indicate:~
Katha Upanishad:~This Atman cannot be attained by the study of the Vedas, or by intelligence, or by much hearing of sacred books. It is attained by him alone whom It chooses. To such a one Atman reveals Its own form.( Ch-II -23-P-20)
Mundaka Upanishad:~ This Atman cannot be attained through the study of the Vedas, nor through intelligence, nor through much learning. He who chooses Atman—by him alone is Atman attained. It is Atman that reveals to the seeker Its true nature.(3 –page-70 Mundaka Upanishad (Upanishads by Nikilanada)
Q: D:Is it not necessary to study the Vedas or at least Prastnatraya (Bhagavad gita.Dasoponishad and Brahma Sutra all with commentaries)to ensure firm realization?
A: Bhagavan:~No. Do you need all that to see yourself? All that is intellectual wealth, useful in explaining doubts and difficulties if others rise them if you yourself encounter them in the course of thinking. But to attain realization, all that is not necessary. You want fresh water to drink, but you do not require all the water of the river Ganges to quench your quest.
Sage Sri, Raman Maharshi:~ Fortunate are the one who do not lose themselves in the labyrinths of philosophy. Bhagwan says: Take Vedanta, for instance: it speaks of 15 pranas the names and functions of it which the student is asked to commit memory. Will it not be sufficient if he thought only one prana does the whole work of maintaining the body? Again the antakaran is said to think, to desire, to will, to reason etc. Why all these details? Has anyone seen antakarana, or all these pranas? Do they really exist? They are conceptual divisions invented by teachers of philosophy by their excessive analysis. Where do all these concepts end? Why should confusion created and then explained away? Fortunate is the man who does not lose himself in the labyrinths of philosophy but goes straight to the source from which they all arise.(GURU RAMANA .By S.S Cohen -vii Danger of philosophy-Page -58-59)
The above passages further prove that: Self-Knowledge cannot be attained by the study of the Vedas and intellectual understanding or by bookish knowledge. Therefore, there is no use of studying the Vedas and other scriptures in order to acquire the non-dualwisdom. That is why Buddha rejected the scriptures, and evenSage, Sri, Sankaraindicated that the ultimate truth lies beyond religion, concept of god and scriptures.
Upanishads:~They alone in this world are endowed with the highest wisdom who are firm in their conviction of the sameness and birthlessness of Ataman. The ordinary man does not understand their way.(Chapter IV — Alatasanti Prakarana 95-P-188 in Upanishads by Nikilanada)
Therefore, there is no use of taking the strain to understand, assimilate the conceptual divisions invented by teachers of philosophy by their excessive analysis. There are more and more doubts and confusions if one tries to understand and assimilate the ultimate truth through scriptures.
Why follow the path of doubts and confusion by losing oneSelf in the labyrinths of philosophy, when one can realize the ultimate truth without them. By mentally tracing the source of the mind from where it rises and subsides one becomes aware of the fallacy of the mind, which rises as waking or dream and subsides as deep sleep. The mind arises from consciousness and subsides as consciousness. Therefore, there is a need for perfect understanding, assimilation of non-dualistic or Advaitic truth.
There is no need to renounce the worldly life to get Self-Realization. Any householder can attain it if has the inner urge.
Ashtavakra Samhita: ~"The man of knowledge, though living like an ordinary man, is contrary to him and only those like him understand his state.
Sage Sri, Sankarabelieved that those of superior intelligence, have no need of this idea of divine causality, and can, therefore, dispense with Sruti and arrive at the truth of Non-Dualism by pure reason.