My (rough) notes with points and question on the above video Advaita is Vedanta – Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj by Stephen Wolinsky:
I’m fond of the mention of non-dualism as a state or station to be discarded — and not a completion or attainment.
In reference to ‘looking for what you have not discarded and discarding it’ as spiritual practice, the Buddha said: whatever is not yours abandon it, or ‘…give up whatever is not yours.’
- consciousness is one of the skandhas and is not-self
- absolute state = second of the two truths and am a little surprised the two truths teaching went unmentioned (by name)
- much of the first part seems to deal with analyzing and explaining the formless jhanas without mentioning “jhana”
- depending on set, setting and content — e.g. certain relationship workshops — as long there’s upfrontness, transparency, and questioning allowed, I don’t see an unskillfulness for all couples who teach spiritual topics
Where is the love, or heart qualities on this path/teaching?
What is (it that is) instructing that “all states and stations need to be discarded?”
How does the knower of the consciousness appear?
Must a state be known (fully) in order to (properly) discard it?
How would Stephen address the energy/consciousness of particles/matter and the emanation of radiation in addition to vibration?
(If all emanates from The Absolute with no Samskaras, or vibrations (there),) how do these “subtle stirrings” known as Spanda happen?
How are linguistics conditioned? How do “words, which are actually abstracted representations of things which do not actually exist” come into being? What are their origins based on?
What about planting those uncooked Samskara seeds in the desert; high atop a barren, all stone mountain; or in perpetually frozen climbs? Or transmuting these “uncooked seeds” into breath?
UPDATE 6/16/20 and Disclaimer: I may continue to update this post as study continues, adding new questions and points and perhaps deleting others. So here goes:
Stephen mentions involvement with Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP). How has and does NLP influence his presentation of Nisargadatta Maharaj’s material and teachings?
In part 2 titled “The Nisargadatta Ultimatum Pointers” he says, “The Absolute does not know itself at all.” Who, or what then knows this, and how is it (not) separate from the absolute?
It may be a far out consideration to ask: how would something like Blank Slate technology (and/or “dazzle” energy that blocks consciousness processing — mentioned on p.113 of Souls of Humanity) play into these teachings, if such things exists? Could “dazzling” and blank slating account for any of this seemingly mass state humanity is in where Nisargadatta Maharaj’s teachings aren’t already readily apparent? Or maybe the opposite, where these teachings further wipe (past-life and planetary history) memories? Or could these teachings act as gatekeeping for such a polarity? If this seem absurd, how can it be ruled out?
If we are to question everything then we are to question the process of questioning itself, right?
There’s much mention of discarding. How is this done?
Could these teachings overall be considered — for lack of a better term — a type of spiritual rationalization?
What are the similarities and differences of Para Brahman and Nirvana?
Since “consciousness contains all perceive-ables and conceive-ables. All states of Consciousness and experiences are holographic and contain all other experiences” how is it that some seem to have greater access to states and experiences — and greater access at certain times — than others? How and why do some states and experiences seem (more) easily accessible while others do not?
How and why does the ray of the absolute function or operate? How and why does absolute nothingness come from the absolute?
What is the origin of I am and how does it cease and possibly reappear?