What is Advaita Vedanta?04 Dec 2022 Share on:
In few of my past posts on AI, I used Advaita Vedanta to come up with a test of intelligence. But did not discuss Advaita Vedanta. This post is to fill that gap.
Advaita Vedanta is a school of Hindu philosophy that teaches the concept of non-dualism, or the idea that the individual self and the universal self are one and the same. This philosophy is based on the teachings of the Upanishads, which are part of the Vedas, the oldest sacred texts of Hinduism.
The main proponent of Advaita Vedanta was the 8th century philosopher Adi Shankara, who is considered to be one of the greatest Hindu philosophers of all time. Shankara’s interpretation of the Upanishads emphasized the concept of non-dualism, which he believed was the ultimate goal of spiritual practice.
According to Advaita Vedanta, the individual self and the universal self are not separate entities, but rather two aspects of the same reality. This means that the ultimate goal of spiritual practice is not just to attain happiness or enlightenment, but rather to realize the oneness of the individual self and the universal self.
This realization is known as moksha, or liberation from the cycle of reincarnation. It is believed that once an individual realizes their oneness with the universal self, they are freed from the endless cycle of birth, death, and rebirth.
In order to achieve this realization, Advaita Vedanta recommends a number of spiritual practices, such as meditation, yoga, and study of the Vedas. These practices are designed to help an individual cultivate a deeper understanding of the non-dual nature of reality, and to gradually let go of the false belief in a separate self.
One of the key concepts in Advaita Vedanta is the idea of Maya, or illusion. This refers to the idea that the world we perceive with our senses is not real, but rather a manifestation of the universal self. In other words, the world we see is not the true reality, but rather a projection of our own consciousness.
This idea may seem difficult to understand at first, but it is actually a very profound and powerful concept. By recognizing the illusory nature of the world, we can begin to let go of our attachment to it, and instead focus on the ultimate reality of the non-dual self.
In conclusion, Advaita Vedanta is a powerful and transformative philosophy that teaches the concept of non-dualism. Through the realization of the oneness of the individual self and the universal self, we can attain liberation (from the cycle of reincarnation) and experience true freedom and peace.