November 21, 2006

The supremacy of Sri Aurobindo

Edward Berge Says: November 20th, 2006 at 10:50 pm Mark Edwards, AVS II: Both Vedanta Hinduism and Vajrayana Buddhism have developed models of the sleeping and dreaming states which they tie into their philosophies of spirituality. The nescient state of deep sleep is an undifferentiated state of complete immersion where no self-other, subject-object distinction exists. But this is also the undifferentiated immersion of the pleroma or at least the self-without-other state of the archaic uroboros.
Duality only arises with the emergence of the early mind, linguistic identity and the membership self. So we have the nonduality of the very primordial developmental stages and experiential states being associated with the very advanced developmental stages and experiential states. This is evidenced in many passages in Advaitic texts where the state of deep sleep is recognised as a state of avidya or not-knowing and yet is also seen to be a nondual state of bliss or ultimate being.
Aurobindo, using the traditional name of “prajna” for the deep sleep state, calls it the state of “all delight”, “He who knows”, and “the Wise One”. All these are examples of PTF-2 connections between the deep sleep state and the very highest causal state of transpersonal experience.
Wilber rightly regards Ramana Maharshi to be one of the great spiritual sages of history. He refers to his writings quite frequently and quotes him specifically with regard to the states of sleep and how they relate to the transpersonal realms. But Raman’s writings on these matters are not at all straightforward and he at times follows closely the traditional Advaitic predilection of associating sleep with the transpersonal and at other times warns against doing so.
But Ramana is saying that the sleep states cannot simply be equated with the transpersonal and that they are states of “nescience” or ignorance rather than transpersonal insight. Arthur Osbourne, one of the pre-eminent students and interpreters of Ramana’s writing says that Ramana “guarded against” the idea that the transpersonal states of realisation were “like” states of sleep. #

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