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Advaitic Mysticism of Sankara

Brahman, according to the Upanishads and Shankara, the major exponent of the philosophy of the Upanishads known as Advaita, is not a metaphysical postulate meant to explain what is empirically experienced or the word. Brahman is absolutely real an....read below

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About This Book

Brahman, according to the Upanishads and Shankara, the major exponent of the philosophy of the Upanishads known as Advaita, is not a metaphysical postulate meant to explain what is empirically experienced or the word. Brahman is absolutely real and is the inner reality or essence or self of all that is there, including one’s self. Therefore it is known directly and immediately as the real or true nature of one’s self. In the context of human reality Brahman is known as Atman, the true reality or nature of one’s self. Direct and unmediated experience or realization of Brahman or brahmanubhava is the consummation of man’s spiritual life as well as the supreme fulfilment of  human existence.  
This is an attempt to understand comprehensively, and in depth the meaning and significance of brahmanubhava as presented and discussed by Shankara in his commentaries on the Upanishads, Brama-Sutras and the Bhagavad-Gita, and in  his other minor works, like Vivekacudamani, Aparokshanubhuti and Upadesha-Sahasri. Shankara is also known for his logical acumen and analytical approach to problems of philosophy.  However, the mystical dimension of his philosophy which is also the reason for the lasting relevance and significance of his philosophy has not received the attention it deserves. May be this is the first of its kind in understanding and presenting systematically the Advaitic mysticism of Shankara in all its aspects. It is entirely based on the works of Shankara.
An attempt is also made in this book to understand the significance of Advaitic mysticism of Shankara in the light of its comparison with that of St. John of the Cross and Jalalu’d-Din Rumi, classical representatives of Christian and Islamic mysticisms.  
 

  • Foreword By :
  • Binding: : Hardbound
  • 13 Digit ISBN : 9788124606797
  • 10 Digit ISBN : 812460679X
  • Edition : 1st Edition
  • Year : 2013
  • Pages : x, 294p.
  • Bibliographic Details :
  • Size : 23 cm
  • Weight (approx.) : 600 gm

Preface    
Abbreviations    
Introduction    

1. The Point of Departure 

Brahman knowledge    
Sence perception    
Inference    
Reasoning    
Smriti    
Shrutis    
Anubhava

2. Description of Brahmanubhava 

Transcends subject–object duality    
Immediate and direct     
Ineffable     
and yogic experience    
and swoon    
and deep sleep    
and death    
experience Brahman is to realize     
One’s Self    
Brahman realization is to attain identity with all    
Self-Brahman realization is the same as    
all-Brahman realization
negative in significance    
is moksha or liberation    
is not limited to turiya    
Significance of Brahmanubhava

3. Behaviour of a Brahmagyani  

Brahmagyani and his behaviour    
Brahmanubhava and the behaviour of a Brahmagyani  

4. The Way to Brahmanubhava  

Bhramanubhava is uncaused    
No means to attain Brahmanubhava    
Means to remove ignorance    
Shudras and Bhramanubhava    

5. The Place of Faith, Emotions and Reasoning in Brahmanubhava 

Faith    
Unfaith    
Emotions    
Place of heart in Self-realization    
Independent type of reasoning    
Reasoning based on Shruti    
Examples of independent-type and Shruti-based reasoning    
Place of reason in Brahmanubhava    
Methods of reasoning  

6. The Object of Brahmanubhava 

Has Brahmanubhava an object?    
Some Upanishadic illustrations    
Brahman as an object of experience    
Brahman as “Experience” or as realized    
Difference between Brahman as an object of experience and Brahman as realized    

7. The Validity of Brahmanubhava  

The validity of Shruti knowledge    
Analyses of scriptural sentences on Self-Brahman identity     
Shruti as a source of valid knowledge    
How to determine the validity of Shruti knowledge?
Validity of Brahmanubhava    
How to determine the validity of Brahmanubhava?

8. Empirical Experience and Brahmanubhava  

Nature and validity of empirical experience    
Empirical experience and Brahmanubhava 

9. Comparisons and Conclusions 

St. John of the Cross    
Jalalu’d-Din Rumi    
Comparisons    
Concept of God    
Concept of the self    
Relation between the self/soul and God or highest reality    
Means to attain God    
The concept of Advaita    
Critical understanding of Brahmanubhava  

Bibliography    
Index    

 

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