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Re to Leon- Atma is Maya

Mar 01, 2002 08:33 AM
by Gerald Schueler

<<<Since when can Atma -- which can only be experienced entirely subjectively through the mind alone -- be "phenomenally experienced"? >>>

What is mind? If you mean our normal thinking mind that has logic and reason and conceptualization, then this is manas, not atma. The fact that you yourself use the word "subjectively" in the above demonstrates the dualistic nature of atma, which belies its mayavic nature. Anything that can be subjectively experienced is maya because the subjective self is maya. 

<<<Phenomenal can only be ascribed to something that can only be *objectively* experienced, or observed and measured through the physical senses. Since 
Atma cannot be so described, it cannot be phenomenal in the accepted philosophical sense. >>>

We can argue about object or subject, Leon, but either one is a duality and thus maya. You are helping my case here, but don't seem to aware of it.

<<<And. therefore, must be as eternal as theosophical fundamental principles imply it is... As a direct emanation of the primal source, or Parabrahm that must always remain unchanged and undiminished throughout all eternity's. >>>

The above is wishful thinking. Why do you, or anyone, think that an "emanation" has to be eternal?
An emanation, by definition, is a dependent entity, and all dependent entities are maya (by my definition of maya, which is also Tzongkhapa's. If you prefer another definition, then the rules change).

<<<Thus, Atma cannot be Maya (in the sense of being an impermanent illusion).>>>

Well, as a matter of fact, I do believe that atma is indeed an impermanent illusion. It is the illusion of a self, a subjective center of consciousness.

<<<Although, as an individualized ray of Atma or "Spirit (consciousness) 
expressed in man," it may be considered by some superficial thinkers as being 
impermanent -- due to the possibility of it being withdrawn back into the 
universal Supreme Spirit when all its individual karma has been mitigated 
and/or transcended. >>>

Then you can consider me to be a "superficial thinker" because you are entirely illogical here and putting labels on people like me who disagree with you doesn't change that.

<<< Nevertheless, even when so withdrawn, it still remains existent in eternal Parabrahm... And, thus, is not illusory or subject to Maya -- (whom an East Indian Guru once told his chelas was "the sister of 
Karma" and that Atma was "their father." :-) >>>

Karma is action, or as Blavatsky has it, Motion. If atma acts, moves, or changes in any way, then it is indeed karmic and mayavic.

<<<Therefore, while the "soul," or separate "self" identity may be Maya, and temporary, the individual spirit or higher "Self," as Atma, remains eternally 
existent. >>>

The idea of a self, whether individual or collective, is maya. Subjectivity is the dualistic opposite of objectivity, and dualism itself is what maya is all about.

<<<Incidentally, this reference to the distinction between lower and higher self 
is all that Buddha could have meant by his doctrine of "Anatma." >>>

Wrong. Buddhism is non-dualitic, and rules out self as well as not-self, which are dualistic polarities. Changing from a lower self to a higher self is a mayavic process, an illusion, that gets one nowhere at all.

Jerry S.

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