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 Jnana Yoga/Self-Inquiry - Advaita (Non-Duality)
 Humans caught in the illusion of seperate self
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59 Posts

Posted - Apr 12 2016 :  02:29:05 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Message
I got into meditation with the idea that it would relieve me of suffering. I not only suffer when I face personal problems, but also when I see others suffering mainly from physical pain.
This lead me to reading a lot about enlightenment. All texts say that we human beings suffer because of our illusion of a separate self and knowing that we are the consciousness in which everything happens will liberate us and this will end the suffering.
I experiantionally know what awareness is or consciousness is and that if I am not thinking I cannot find my separate self. This has not sunk in yet, but let us say I have had glimpses of this.
My question is, why by nature human beings evolve from babies to adult with this sense of seperate self and then suffer so much and then have to work hard to let go of this illusion of a seperate self. Why is life such a cruel game or is it only people with bad karma in previous reincarnations caught in this illusion. I don't even know if karma and reincarnation is all true. Just wondering.
Can you folks please shed some light on this.

Edited by - anonymous05 on Apr 12 2016 03:13:34 AM

Bodhi Tree

2972 Posts

Posted - Apr 12 2016 :  11:29:45 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bodhi Tree's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
It's not that the separate self is completely unreal. What's unreal is the belief that there is an absolute separation between one self and the next. Trying to mentally eliminate the separate self creates its own kind of suffering, called non-relational self-inquiry in AYP.

All that is required is to smooth out the boundaries of individual and collective self. That's how you alleviate suffering and bring in liberation. Obstructions are removed, and the picture becomes clearer. Very simple. No elimination of separate self required.
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59 Posts

Posted - Apr 12 2016 :  1:55:51 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks, Bodhi Tree. I get what you are saying. My question still is about why are the boundaries by nature felt so clearly as we grow up from babies to adults and we then suffer and then in the name of spiritual quest try hard ( it is hard for some) to smooth out the boundaries the by product of which is elimination of suffering.

Edited by - anonymous05 on Apr 12 2016 1:57:12 PM
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Bodhi Tree

2972 Posts

Posted - Apr 12 2016 :  10:17:59 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bodhi Tree's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Well, I think it's a self-created, divine game. I think we want to experience going from a sense of limitation to a sense of the limitless. What great joy there is to escape a trap of our own making! It's a tangible contrast for the enjoyment of the mind. Change is the essence of experience.

Even suffering and misery can be attractive to someone who has been accustomed to bliss for an infinite amount of time, just by virtue of curiosity and an interest in variety. So, if we are pure bliss at our core, it would make sense that we might want to experience a different shade of reality. But suffering gets old pretty quick, so we go racing back towards our origin.

Personally, I don't really think much about how I can eliminate suffering. I mainly think about what kind of ecstatic bliss I want to experience, then freedom from suffering comes as a byproduct of the pursuit of excellence.

It's kind of like debt. If a person obsesses over how much debt they are in, that often leads to more debt. If they envision a life of abundance and prosperity, the debt will be mitigated automatically. So, if we worry a lot about how to get rid of suffering, that can actually promote more suffering. Better to focus on the pursuit of ecstatic bliss flowing through the veins and channels of our body, resulting in an outpouring of divine love, which is the ultimate prize.

Life is a game. Can we master it?

I think so.
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United Kingdom
1628 Posts

Posted - Apr 13 2016 :  07:28:21 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Originally posted by anonymous05
My question is, why by nature human beings evolve from babies to adult with this sense of separate self and then suffer so much and then have to work hard to let go of this illusion of a separate self.
One thought to add to what Bodhi Tree has already said:
The way we evolve from babies to adults has a lot to do with the level of consciousness of the world we are born into. A lot of these assumptions are implicit in what children learn from their parents and the society they grow up in.
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1279 Posts

Posted - Apr 14 2016 :  01:59:22 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Dear Anonymous - I think we do that because we have nothing better to do. Just Being is boring. And Alone.

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587 Posts

Posted - Apr 14 2016 :  10:49:07 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
In my opinion, there is an important difference between unnecessary and necessary suffering. The former pain is an illusion, predicated on a separation which doesn't exist ... and is transmuted through awakening to the truth of our being. Self realization allows us to move beyond unnecessary suffering. And it fortifies us to deal with real or necessary suffering. This necessary type of pain is more easily transmuted through compassion and/or acceptance. In my experience, the silently sent emanations of loving goodwill tend to relieve the suffering of others. Also, of course, actively helping whenever possible. As one emanates uplifting love, support and encouragement, it becomes a very beautiful expression.

When one is capable of living more or less continually with divine joy, it eclipses all suffering. This is not to say the suffering or pain vanishes, just that our everpresent awareness of the divine supersedes or eclipses it. As our daily life focuses more on this divine plane, than on human circumstances, it seems all that prepared us for this space is a very sacred path. In retrospect, all the suffering (when we were lost) that led up to this moment can be cherished because it amounts to nothing when compared with the love, joy, and peace of living close to the divine. Once That is experienced, we realize it is worth any price we may have paid to return to our true estate. At least that is my view on the matter.

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21 Posts

Posted - Jan 02 2017 :  10:36:17 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Originally posted by Bodhi Tree

Well, I think it's a self-created, divine game. I think we want to experience going from a sense of limitation to a sense of the limitless. What great joy there is to escape a trap of our own making! It's a tangible contrast for the enjoyment of the mind. Change is the essence of experience.

Interesting theory. My personal opinion (and no issue with it being slightly different to yours as this just comes purely from my imaginagion/intuition) I don't believe it is self created game - assuming game means its basically pointless or meaningless done to simply avoid boredom.

I see life as a constantly evolving creation process. New things are brought into being constantly and they inevitably start out primitive and evolve to higher levels of complexity and purity. The same happens with conscious beings. Lead into gold as they say. Each small individual part adds to the greater whole of God\universe\collective consciousness what ever you want to call it. Just as cells in your body combine to create your physical human body. Thus our own creation and personal evolution and advancement - adds to the collective creation and evolution and helps advance it and allows it to experience more and become more.

Each higher level helps to train the level below just as parents do with children. Souls continue to move up and new ones are created to continue to process.

The physical life seems to me to be more of a training ground. Sure its still a "game" we can play for enjoyment and entertainment but it has a higher purpose to purify and advance the souls that incarnate here to the next level. It seems the idea of thoughts creating form is delayed in this world. We must think - then exert physical effort to make it happen over a period of time. We call this Karma - the result of ones actions.

In this world there is a delayed karma. Actions don't take effect instantly. They take time to manifest results. Almost like a built in safe guard. What we have seen as humans evolved is Karma has gradually begun to speed up. As our morals and intellect have slowly evolved so too has the speed and impact that our actions - karma - is able to manifest into reality. The stakes continue to get higher.

10,000 years ago - the most advanced weapon we had was a blunt instriment, which evolved to a knife, to a sword, to a spear and an arrow, to guns, to cannons, to missiles and tanks, to war planes and battle ships and eventually weapons of mass destruction. The same applies to teaching, communication, medicine, sexuality.

The stakes are raised. Our Karma manifests much greater results at faster speeds. The cause and effect is constantly amplified. "Training" appears to be getting more difficult. We get more power in proportion to our ability to handle this power and use it wisely and effectively. If we make mistakes (Mass factory farming, mass tree felling, war etc)- the results manifested are much worse and dramatic. (Global warming, mass destruction and death). Thus we are forced to continually improve our morals \ actions \ Karma or be eliminated.

It may well be that this is just a "game" but to me the game seems to have a purpose. To constantly refine and improve the actions and karma of the beings incarnate here. To give conscious beings on this planet free will but at the same time train them to use it to follow the laws of nature with every increasing speed, impact and effectiveness.
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Bodhi Tree

2972 Posts

Posted - Jan 02 2017 :  10:55:08 PM  Show Profile  Visit Bodhi Tree's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
I very much like your seeds of contemplation, Poncho. And I agree 100% that life is much more than a game. As you say, manifest reality is a work in progress...a constantly evolving display of divine genius and artistry. Gamesmanship is only a small portion.

It's funny, I just finished watching Rogue One in the theaters about an hour ago, and to read your visionary post is very fitting. As much as I like the fictional universe of Star Wars, I don't think we will be having any future wars in space with laser beams. I think weaponry will be a thing of the past--a relic for the archives. All that will remain will be peace and harmony.

Re: your mention of actions, karma, and dealing with time, I would recommend checking out samyama (core and cosmic), if you haven't already. I have found a lot of power and refinement in that technique. It's a great coping mechanism for dealing with the sometimes slow development on Earth.

May the force be with you, Poncho!
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21 Posts

Posted - Jan 06 2017 :  07:31:25 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
I just watched that the other day as well. That's a lovely thought. I hope that one day we can eventually get to that point. That humanity can raise its consciousness level high enough that we can overcome the limitations and issues that come out of our lower self. Currently we seem to be moving forward faster with our intellectual developments - then our emotional and consciousness development can handle - which is a little bit scary. But I feel a change in the world at the moment. Almost like it is the rough, difficult process of shaking off old limited ideologies and ready for a large step forward. :)

For me personally - I had never really known much else but living from that lower self until last year. I was thrust head long out of that world by a Kundalini awakening that opened my eyes to the possibilities of man .... and I mean hey if I can do it anyone can :) In truth I'm still working my way issues. Once the energy from an initial awakening drops its really impossible to go back to living the old way you used. The old power struggles and selfish desires don't have the same attraction they once did. I've been trying to stabilize and set intention and practices in place to start working my way towards sustaining a higher consciousness level.

Thanks for the Samyama recommendation - will take a look :)

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61 Posts

Posted - Sep 13 2017 :  4:16:56 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
I beg to differ from all the opinions. Those are theories.

Let me present you my own personal experience. The only and only reason you suffer is because you are living in duality, you feel incomplete and feel something is missing. All the time, something is missing and you don't know what. Endlessly you suffer and suffer, because there is not enough look at people injury and you get too close and attached, his physical injury becomes your mental injury. You begin to contemplate his pain as your own...simply because you have a hole to fill you fill it with almost anything. People's suffering or People's doesn't matter what comes.

The whole process of yoga is about going inwards. The Idea of Gnana is not about having visions or experiences, it is about having a certain wisdom about life as a whole. When your intellect pierces through the veil of Duality. Thoughts become silent, suffering, anxiety and other nonsense becomes a joke. Your mind becomes starts working for you and perhaps will even start the kundalini awakening to restructure your body so that you can have a deeper experience. It is about feeling things exactly how they are in nature, just the way they are without any taint or prejudice of any sort.

you must sharpen your intellect, examine your problems and cut through them. Understand what you are feeling, understand why you are feeling that. Each one has their own separate conclusions and confusions about reality. You must tear apart all conclusions and be fine with confusion, slowly slowly confusion turns into clarity and you finally get wisdom through that but that will be followed by even more questions and confusion...such is the way of life.

non-attachment will happen as a consequence, it is but minor thing that one goes through. It is also a safeguard so you don't start endlessly hogging people misery and hurt as your own. When you are awakened through Gnana even alcohol can't get you drunk, mind will continuously stay aware and sharp. Test it if you wish. I never believed in that PRACTICING non-attachment nonsense because I knew for a fact since childhood that this is what people can naturally be, its not something you imitate and I was absolutely correct.

When you grasp the concept of duality and how they are not separate but complimentary through your inner wisdom. I can absolutely promise you, Entire life will change.

Only thing you need to strive for right now, is clarity in your perception.

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