rené magritte, 1935
UPDATE: today, tuesday. big portion of the class addressing the upanishads. this thursday we keep at it.
very good points!
we're all learning. we're all students. we're right even if we are wrong.
just as this is the best of all possible worlds (though this world may suck sometimes).
my job in this class is to problematize the issues, to listen and learn. don't worry, we have to get used to a new philosophical jargon. break the resistance.
ideas being fluttered around in class:
damah: "self governance"
the "experience unexperienced"
bhakti: the importance of joy.
"am just the unaffected ground where all consuming is consumed"
are we god? yes. remember: the hindu way is enstasis (going inside) as opposed to extasis (christian way). they're both valid.
if i forgot something you can address it.
the metaphysics in hinduism builds around dualities: atman/brahman, kharma/dharma, maya/reality, dukkha/bhakti,
many of your comments addressed undeniable tensions.
the problem of free will vs. kharma,
the problem of dukkha,
reincarnation as literal or metaphoric,
which brings me to maya (the veil of illusions)
1- we're here to fulfill our kharma (our cosmic debt from previous lives). so, our being here is necessary and unavoidable, and yet, we remain unaware. we don't feel as if we deserve this. the idea of cause/effect goes unnoticed. this is a result of our avidya (or ignorance).
(maya plays a part here).
while it's true that we're here to fulfill our kharma, it's no less true that simultaneously we are here to change our future's kharma.
what's the vehicle? our dharma. the reality and the duties thereof that we have to live with. "duty" is our embeddedness, what we come with here. we have to work with what we have. for example: if i have a brother with a disability i have no choice but deal with that. if i've a klineferter DNA predisposition there's nothing i can do about it, etc.
2- samsara is the wheel that keeps this universe going. we're inside it. yet, are we not all brahman? is not my atman yours and yours mine and both ours HIS? since the only thing we have in this phenomenal realm are our actions, it's through actions that we find a path to realization or more suffering. the path is moksha.
what's on your mind? you can address any topic from our last two classes. tuesday we'll read from the Upanishads.