"Nonduality can all too easily be reduced to nihilistic philosophy when we try to disown the mind and ego in our efforts to reach awakening. These are integral parts of ourselves, and if we want authentic awakening, we need to lovingly accept and integrate them.
PRACTICALLY ALL OF US reject existential meaninglessness because we do not want to invalidate our lives and relationships. If life is meaningless — that is, if nothing has any significance whatsoever — then everything we hold dear is lost and our lives lose purpose. The word meaning is derived from the Old English word mænan, to tell of, and if we have nothing of our lives to tell of, then how can we say we have even lived?
The philosophical outlook of existential meaninglessness is nihilism, which became popular in the West in the 19th and 20th century. Nihilism derives its name from the Latin root nihil, meaning nothing, and it is basically the philosophy of annihilation of all absolute values, existences and assumptions, including the self. It is the philosophy of a world that was losing its religious values in the face of a burgeoning mechanical science. The despair of nihilism is starkly summed up in Shakespeare's Macbeth:
Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no more; it is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.... read more
A conversation on youtube between Rupert Spira and Swami Sarvapriyananda (of Vedanta New York) in which they discuss "non-dual consciousness," randomly starting playing on my laptop today.
On Vedanta New York's website I skimmed an article written by Swami Sarvapriyananda called "The Concept of Soul or Self in Vedanta." A quote from the article "Behind the world of multiplicity there is essential unity and interconnectedness." What flabbergasts me now that I've come to understand that the one and the many are a single thing - that reality is a oneness of multiplicity - is how this notion that diversity/multiplicity, is in the way of/conceals oneness is rigidly dualistic and divisive, representing a non-dualism (non-dual paradigm) in which non-dual means no twoness, only undifferentiated oneness and no real duality (i.e. that when duality is granted, it is as an illusory appearance) rather than non-dual referring to the one and the many as non-dual, indivisible in the same way that the transcendent and immanent, form and formlessness co-dependently arise, equally real, as one can't exist without the other, i.e. they can only exist in/as a mutually inclusive relationship. Just like there's no universality or gestalt without particularity, there's no unification without real differentiated things to unite! This is where the notion that interconnectedness and unity are behind multiplicity, one that used to ring with the clarity of "Absolute Truth," and which teachers like Rupert Spira helped me solidify, 21qnow boggles my mind as to how this can be considered possible when if you take "a mutual connection between two or more things" as a fitting definition of interconnection, it clearly cannot exist without the multiplicity that in this case is perceived as veiling it. It seems so obvious now that inter-connection depends on relationship, and that relationship depends on multiplicity! This is what the authors of the book "The Guru Papers" were pointing to when they referred to "a covert, sophisticated dualism between unity and diversity" in what they describe as "the Oneness ideology." From where I'm at in my journey from all is separate, to all is one, to all is simultaneously one and two ("uni-dual!") it's a truly baffling oversight that severing unity from multiplicity is not only impossible, but is dualistic mutual exclusivity, and that interconnection could exist beyond/without parts that exist in connection to one another is untenable. It was profoundly shocking when I discovered that in separating a formless "absolute" from a "relative world" of form, I had been dividing the indivisible, not yet perceiving that the manifest world is a unity of diversity, the One AS two, a primal singularity, that by individuating (or as Tim Freke would say, "uni-viduating") has emerged into a wondrous multifarious relationship with itself as "the 10,000 things" it has become, and within this perspective lies an invitation for us to perceive evolution itself as Being blooming through multiplicity that isn't just an appearance, but a real thing intrinsic to any real unity.
Read The Guru Papers free PDF ebook here