A-AS Level (CIE) Hinduism: Specimen Questions with Answers 13 - 13 of 41

Question 13

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Describe in Detail

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Explain Avaita Philosophy

Explanation

  • Advaita philosophy was introduced by the great sage Adi Shankaracharya. The term ‘Advaita’ means ‘Non-duality’. Advaita philosophy claims the idea of the unity or oneness of the soul (Jeevatma) and the Eternal soul (Paramatma/Brahma).

  • Adi Shankara always used to mention a quote that taken from Brahmanjanavali, that which stress the idea of Advaita or Non-dual philosophy. The quote is-“Brahma satyam jagat mitya, jeevo brahmaiva na parah”. It means-“Brahman is the only truth, this world is unreal and ultimately, there is no difference between Brahman and individual soul”.

  • According to Adi Shankara-the world appears to be real but, actualy not. I t is just like-a rope appears to be snake in the dark.

  • While surfing through Upanishads, we can see several quotes regarding the Brahma. Some of them are-Aham Brahmasi (I am Brahman). It is taken from Bruhadaranyopanishad in Yajurveda. Next one is-Tattvamasi (that thou art) that taken from Chhandogyopanishad in Samaveda. Another one is-Ayam atma Brahma (soul itself is Brahma) that taken from Mandukyopanishad in Atharvaveda.

  • According to Adi Shankara, knowledge alone can give us self-realization or liberation from the bondage, that which considered as ultimate goal of the Jeevatma. Thats why Aitariyopanishad in Atharvaveda says-Pragyanam Brahma (the knowledge itself is Brahma).

  • When a person realizes his/her own true nature as “Sat-Chit-Ananda” (Existence-Consciousness-Bliss) -he/she got liberated within no time.

  • Upanishads claims-Brahmavidapnoti param (who knows Brahman-attain the Supreme soul), Brahma Veda Brahmaiva bhavati (He who knows Brahman, himself becomes Brahman).

  • From all these statements, we can conclude that the Advaita philosophy gives a grand vision of unity of Jeevatma and Paramatma-that leads to the uprootment of the entire ignorance-the cause of all types of fears and sorrows.

  • These all are main features and aspects of Advaita philosophy in Hinduism.