Search & Read
Maya Is the Key to the Self
Fausto: Is maya the doorway to the self ?
Arlindo: Yes, Fausto, and for different reasons. The most fundamental one is because jiva’s experiences are in maya (the apparent reality superimposed on the self), and by negating maya we negate the jiva as well. The reason this upfront negation, in most cases, does not work is due to two facts:
1. Realization of the self occurs to the apparent jiva, hence you need to acknowledge the apparent jiva first, and jivas share (enjoy and suffer) their existence in maya, so you need to bring maya/Isvara into the equation to understand the relationship between Isvara, jiva and the apparent world. Isvara’s laws governing this apparent reality also need to be acknowledged and understood.
2. In order to discriminate the self from the not-self, jiva needs to be equipped with a contemplative, sattvic mind. Rajas and tamas need to be under control, otherwise they will constantly disturb the mind and contemplation will be but a dream. The best and most common way to qualify the mind is by understanding, knowing and applying karma/dharma yoga.
Karma yoga is the science of maya/Isvara, which will produce the clear understanding of its functioning, with its laws and forces governing the jivas and the entire creation. Once it is clearly understood, jiva will relax because he will know what “belongs” to him and what “belongs” to Isvara. His mind will be free of the unnecessary agitation of trying to control what he has no control over: his experiences.
Jivas believe themselves to be the waves. They forgot that from another perspective they exist as the ocean (Isvara), and that yet from another level of identity they exist as H2O (consciousness). The purpose of true spiritualty is to help jivas realize their most essential nature, that which all other secondary natures depend upon. We need to understand the nature of the wave and the ocean before we realize that water is their common most fundamental nature.
Fausto: I find lots of contradictions in what you say.
Arlindo: In language we will always find contradictions and apparent contradictions. Certain ideas and concepts may appear as contradictory because they often depend on the context in which they were presented. A genuine student of Vedanta needs to have the intelligence to read the context, to understand the implied meaning of certain statements, and therefore resolve the apparent contradictions. The teacher is always there to help. ☺