Sonntag, 1. März 2009

The Heart of Integral Thinking

The great goal of Advaita Vedanta monism is the union with the ONE in the beyond, beyond the veil of maya. Nevertheless the formula Brahman (the world soul) and Atman (the individual soul) are one can stimulate holistic thinking already in this world.
The following quote is from the "Gandhi-Gita", Discourse VI:
“28. The yogin, cleansed of all stain, unites himself ever thus to Atman, easily enjoys the endless bliss of contact with Brahman. [Cf. "Being wholly absorbed in the divinity, the soul is one with it, conjoining as it were, centre with centre." Plotinus] 29. The man equipped with yoga looks on all with an impartial eye, seeing Atman in all beings and all beings in Atman. 30. He who sees Me everywhere and everything in Me, never vanishes from Me nor I from him. One starts with seeing oneself in his near neighbour, then in his distant neighbours, then in still more distant humanity, and ends in seeing himself in all; and seeing oneself in another is to love the other. That is the same thing as seeing other beings in one’s Self. The next natural step is to see God in everyone and everyone in God. The yogin who worships and loves God worships and loves everyone, for he sees God in everyone; 31. The yogin who, anchored in unity, worships Me abiding in all beings, lives and moves in Me, no matter how he lives and moves. 32. He who, by likening himself with others, senses pleasure and pain equally or all as for himself, is deemed to be the highest yogi, O’Arjuna. As Shankaracharya explains: “By realizing that all creatures feel the same pleasure and pain as he feels, he harms no being.”"
The last sentence is for me the most important one: "By realizing that all creatures feel the same pleasure and pain as he feels, he harms no being." It's like Buddhism. Having recognised that all life is harm, its ethical imperative has become "Don't harm!"
Now Sri Aurobindo has reformulated classical Hinduism. The longing is not anymore for the oneness of the beyond. It is more that God has entirely become Nature ("involution"). And now Nature seeks to become progressively God again ("evolution"). It is a dynamic pandeism. In the Aurobindan view the world soul is manifested in this world. Thus, we have to care for all creatures of this world. With this reformulation of classical Advaita Vedanta teaching by Sri Aurobindo the age of the "Integral" has started.

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