Shining World

One Less Ignorant Person is a Net Gain for the World

Welcome.  Tonight I will tidy up the relationship between the two creation stories, non-origination and cause and effect, which boil down to the apparent knowledge/experience paradox.

Question:  Can you enlighten me? In one of your seminar series you say that ‘matter’ is inert. Then in another series you say ‘matter’ is eternal. I might be confused for the wrong reason. Is this reflection or possibly non origination?

James: I hope I can enlighten you. The problem is caused by comparing to ideas that are in different categories.  Eternal belongs in the TIME category.  The reflection teaching belongs in the Matter category and the Non-origination teaching doesn’t belong in a category because there are only categories if there is a creation.  Let’s start over.  

Consciousness/Awareness is eternal and matter is eternal. Consciousness is not conscious, and matter is not conscious. But when Maya (Macrocosmic Ignorance) is opperating Consciousness and matter together become a conscious, mixture, which is to say that they appear as
a single unicellular organism, which complexifies by dividing. This process goes on for approximately 14.67 billion years on the cosmic clock.  It is called reflected awareness. Prior to creation of the material world, which provides a reflection for awareness in the form of macrocosmic sattva, the eternal inert material “portion” of Awareness is potential. It exists, but it is unmanifest.

Now we are 14.67 billion years into the creation.   You will probably be surprised to know that the reflection is still expanding and will probably expand for many more billions of years.

Anyway, sometime during the last 5-10,000 years, the reflection in jivas becomes more subtle and at this point we can say that a very tiny minority of human beings) become aware that they are aware. Most humans are not aware that they are not human.

An equally tiny cohort of this tiny cohort somehow hears about Vedanta, of which an equally tiny cohort understands the value of Vedanta (freedom from dependence on objects, not freedom from objects) and commits to actualizing said freedom, of which an equally tiny cohort with the help of scripture and a guru is set free of the notion that it is a created (born) entity. In short, a very rare few. One of my friends once said that there probably aren’t twenty-five people in the world who understand what I’m talking about, which is fine with me in so far as most human beings don’t understand their non-difference from other human beings.  Think how nice it would bn if you could claim that 25 people understand you.

Anyway, from this point on Awareness enjoys the option of granting freedom to the created entity. Keep in mind that the created entity is not non-existent. It is a living functioning conceptual entity with karma that eventually dies.  It cares a lot about karma because karma creates its future, which can always stand improvement.

So the question becomes, “If I am unborn Awareness and know there is no death for me, why would I bother blessing a finite entity with a happy life?”

Vedanta’s answer is “Why not?” It gives three reasons: (1) for the sake of the jiva itself, which suffers various unwanted limitations (2) for the sake of the teaching tradition which it owes a debt of gratitude for setting it free of the notion it is only a jiva and, (3) for the sake of the world.  Everyone Is more or less concerned about the state of play in the world today so Vedanta informs us how to improve it.  Think long and hard on this statement,

“One Less Ignorant Person is a Net Gain for the World”

and discard as much ignorance as you possibly can before you shuffle off the mortal coil. 

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