Collapsing Duality Using Vedanta Metaphors / Incarnation / Jiva's Svadharma (8)

Collapsing Duality Using Vedanta Metaphors / Incarnation / Jiva's Svadharma (8)


Sessions 8 starts with providing reason and logic for Incarnation. Then we describe non-dual Consciousness using various metaphors to collapse idea/belief in duality (separation). Also, what does Jīva have to do with an electrical appliance?


  1. Reason for Incarnation (soul transmigrating to another body) explained in both Traditional and Vedantic point's of views.
  2. Qualifier for mokṣa: “See no difference between pleasure and pain, gain and loss, victory and defeat and prepare for battle. You will incur no sin”.
    This statement is subtle introduction to Karma Yoga (whose purpose is to neutralize vāsanā's – which create our experience of judgement between pleasure-pain, like-dislike).
  3. What Person of Perfection (Yogī) knows – in terms of “how to live happy and successfully”:

     I have an obligation to fulfill in this world. A duty. See what life is asking, and give life what IT (Īṣvara[2], God) wants, not what I want. This is sole cause of spiritual stagnation. We let our likes-dislikes (vāsanā) dictate life. Consequence is of suffering.

    Suffering is defined as: Experiencing pain when (#1) I get what I don’t want, OR (#2) when I lose what I have.

    And since all-is-change (Mithya), #1/#2 are inevitable.

    Add to that, Jīva doesn’t control the environment (even though it does, but not the whole). Hence Jīva can’t even depend on #2.  Īṣvara[2] controls the whole.

    Does Jīva (you) decide when it’s going to get tired, talkative, quiet, confused, clear? No. JĪva doesn’t even decide content of it’s own Dream every night. Nor the next thought that'll arrive in 30 sec from now (which is determined by Causal Body). Yet, Jīva's consistently act as if they're “in control”.

    Conclusion: Suffering is the PRICE payed for worshipping our likes-dislikes.

    Hence purpose of Karma Yoga is to neutralize our like-dislikes (vāsanā's, rāga-dveṣa; lust-repulsions). Which removes suffering. Then inherent joy of being (“ananda” definition of satchitananda) is directly experienced. ”

    ANALOGY: Every like-dislike is compared to throwing a pebble into a tranquil and still lake. One pebble (despite it’s small size) has power to generate ripples, extending for meters. Every ripple is felt as a disturbance or agitation; subtracting 1 point off “ananda” (your primal joy).

    As we discussed in Session 7, worldly person only tastes this primal joy (ananda), when Jīva obtains what it wants.

    Reason for this is, a fulfilled desire temporarily suppresses further pebbles agitating the Mind. Hence the pure-reflective surface of the lake (Mind), can now without disturbance, reflect the ORIGINAL Illuminating Light (Self), whose inherent nature is Joy/Love.

    Thus we acknowledge importance of purifying our Mind. Karma Yoga is 100% a mind-purification way of life (sādhanā).

  4. Metaphor for understanding your personality or purpose in life:

    Appliance performs a certain function.

    For example, a drill's duty is to fix/screw things.

    Blender's duty is to make tasty concoctions. And provide the drill food when it's hungry. While the drill assists the blender when it's experiencing an existential break-down.  😀

    Light-bulb's duty is to help both the drill and the blender to see what they're doing.

    Fan's duty is to provide comfort in warmer conditions. And prevent the drill, blender and light-bulb getting into a “hot argument” over whose duty is superior.

    In our final analysis: Each appliance is needed MOST at exact time when it's needed. This appliance-duty is likened to your svadharma.

    Just like Arjuna's svadharma was to proceed with the war and restore order in the society.

    Meaning, if you don't accept your function (appliance, svadharma), it'll lead to suffering and spiritual stagnation. It's the only way to move forward.

    Accept your duty, and be your appliance given by Īṣvara. Refuse to be other “more successful” appliances (as often taught in self-help world), because it has nothing to do with your own svadharma.

  5. We use analogy of H2O (Brahman), Ocean (Īṣvara) and wave (Jīva) to collapse false idea (belief) of duality, and explain reason for Jīva's identification with B-M-I (Body-Mind-Intellect).
  6. Limitless Consciousness (Self) is defined as: non-participating, non-interfering, non-experiencing, non-verbalized Witness.
    I know (Self) that I know (knowledge, Knower, ‘I AM' sense, Jīva) this Object.
    Meaning, it's the Knower (Self – which can't be verbalized or grasped) that Knows about the Knower (Jīva), which knows about the Known (Object/Experience).
    Self/Witness does not interfere or tamper with or participate with Thoughts. That's why every thought is known EXACTLY for what it is. Example demonstrating this:

    Imagine a pink cow. Hold image for at least 2 sec.

    Question: When you observed this pink cow, did your observing/witnessing somehow illegally change cow's color from pink to green? No.

    Hence, Self is that which let's all experiences (Objects) be known for what they are.

    Highest teaching in Vedānta – in one short question: How do “I” KNOW that “i” KNOW?
  7. We describe “Limitless Consciousness” (Self/Witness) in 5 points; ideally to be memorized because it'll help with Self-inquiry (discriminating Self [Satya] from not-Self [Mithyā])

Download visual mind map of this session. And Gītā 2.23/24 chanting | text.

20 June 2018


  1. Brian Dolan on December 21, 2018 at 3:19 am

    As a quick way to stay grounded in advaita is ok to say Emptyness metaphors in living life.
    Rgs Brian

  2. Sven on May 2, 2019 at 2:52 pm

    Great chapter explaining consciousness. I especoally liked the Water, ocean, wave metaphore. Thank you.

  3. Ben Simpson on October 31, 2019 at 11:15 pm

    So asking someone if they believe in god is like a cup of water asking another cup of water (in a universe made of water) if they believe water?

    • mm Andre V on November 2, 2019 at 3:48 pm

      Basically yes. Even belief/non-belief is also water. Even Advaita Vedanta is water. Even concept of “I AM Water” is also water. When there is a dream tonight, the dreamer doesn’t think it’s a dream. The dreamer creates field of science and religion inside the dream. Dreamer starts wars and plays a peaceful role. Yet everything is pervaded and sustained by YOU, the One Waker alone. Problem is the dream character tries to “feel” like he/she is the Waker (enlightened). But even the feeling and the very mind that’s trying, is pervaded by the Waker. That’s why dreamer can’t do anything, other then own up to what is already the eternal truth, the One Waker alone. Plethora more on this in course.

  4. Ben Simpson on January 16, 2020 at 8:39 am

    thankyou. very good!

  5. Pauline on November 30, 2020 at 3:17 am

    Thank you for this excellent course! I’m learning so much from every single video.

    I just had a question about someone who is unconscious. Can you elaborate further into this? In essence the person is not alive but then the body is still ‘alive’. So what does that mean? Also what has happened to the consciousness of this person? Also what happens when consciousness returns? Hope you can give me some clarity on this matter. Thank you.

    • mm Andre V on December 9, 2020 at 9:28 pm

      Hi Pauline.

      If computer hardware is damaged (brain), then even if electricity (consciousness) is flowing through it, the computer is unable to show any software (mind) on the screen. Hence computer is “unconscious”. But this doesn’t mean that electricity isn’t flowing through the computer.

      In same way…

      When person is unconscious, it just means physical brain (gross body) is temporarily damaged, thus can’t host the mind (subtle body). Remember brain and mind are two different things. EG: Brain has weight/mass. But you can put weight onto thoughts.

      Order is like this:

      1) Consciousness
      2) Subtle Body (Mind)
      3) Physical Body (Brain) – Damaged, hence no mind, hence person is considered “in unconscious coma”.

  6. Dawn on March 29, 2021 at 7:11 am

    I was wondering if you have read anything about IBM research on Mind Loops?
    Also, if you would you be willing, maybe a video, to expand on this in regards to our vasanas, karma and reincarnation?

    Many Thanks

    • mm Andre Vas on April 1, 2021 at 7:37 pm

      I was wondering if you have read anything about IBM research on Mind Loops?

      Is it:

      1) Observe: senses pickup external world data and send inside the mind (which can be equated to CPU). But also observe one’s own inner thoughts.

      2) Reflect: Taking time to study what kind of feelings it’s triggering, and what kind of related thoughts it’s bringing up.

      3) Make: On bases of Step 2, intellects forms a conclusion, thus person acts for sake of (a) enjoying the result (b) protecting from potential harm.

      Also, if you would you be willing, maybe a video, to expand on this in regards to our vasanas, karma and reincarnation?

      Yes, the matter is spread throughout next 90+ videos. But through search I see something mentioned here:

      Search on page: reincarnation

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