It is an experiential fact that the entire diversity of dream-world is nothing but one singular entity, one’s own mind. It appears as real, tangible and diverse only so long as one is dreaming. Once awake, one realizes that the experienced plurality of dream was actually one stuff, the mind.What is the effect of this knowledge about the unity of dream world? One is immediately freed from the happiness and sorrow of the dream world. One understands their pointlessness. One also understands that their perception of duality in dream was not wrong but their belief about its existence as duality was definitely wrong. Thus, one comes to a conclusion that non-duality exists despite the perception of duality. The dawn of this knowledge immediately frees one from the tangle of happiness and sorrow and elevates to the level of peace.
It is technically correct to say that there is no difference in the type of perception by a dreamer of dream-world and by a waker of waking-world. They both appear equally real, tangible and plural to respective entities. In fact, no difference can be asserted at all. Then, would it be logically contradictory to state that waking world too, despite the apparent perception of duality, is actually a singular stuff? It will not be.
But can we believe it?
Science comes to our rescue. It states that universe is nothing but matter and space. Matter and energy are convertible. Matter can also be understood as combination of elementary particles, which will be nothing but energy packets. Thus, basically, Science states that the world, which includes the perceiving individual, is nothing but energy and space. Since space is nothing, in the sense there is no stuff making it, one can conveniently say, as a scientist, that world is made of one stuff. Thus, Science states that despite perception of duality in world, there is actually non-duality as everything is made of energy.
Are we finding a striking similarity in the statement from science and the analysis of dream world-waking world analysis?
If you say yes, then it is absolutely wrong. 🙂
The effect of knowledge of non-duality is cessation from the tangle of happiness and sorrow. Take any scientist, you find him as miserably tethered to joy/sorrow as any other being. Thus, it is clear that the knowledge of matter-energy-space imparted by science is of no use as far as freedom from joy/sorrow is concerned.
What exactly is the problem in the statement of science?
The fundamental problem in the argument from science is its treatment of space as something different from matter. It believes space to be nothingness, in which everything else subsists. It believes space to have no stuff. And thus it postulates two realities, energy and space. Or rather energy and absence of energy. Different permutations and combinations of energy IN space give rise to myriad names/forms. Analyse critically and you will appreciate that this is the cause of our non-liberation from clutches of joy/sorrow despite this understanding of science.
On the other hand, the Shruti postulates that matter has come from space. Rather strictly speaking, space too is stated to be matter. This unifies all and apparently it may seem that it will solve the problem. One will see that even this doesn’t help either.
What then is the way out?
Shruti States that unity of existence is a matter of fact. That singular stuff whence everything has come may be called God, for the time being. That one does not know it is the root of problem. Both I and world have come from one stuff. I don’t know where I have come from, who I am etc. The moment I know as to who I am, I will also solve the mystery of world for I would then know that I and world are same.
All well. I get you. But how will I know myself?
Be consciously aware of yourself alone. Have no thoughts and be aware of yourself.
I can’t do that.
Ok. I can appreciate. Make your heart pure first.
How to do that?
Do all your duties for God (the name given for the stuff from which everything has come) and surrender the fruits of action to God. Don’t be an enjoyer of results of actions. Dedicate them to God. Your heart will become pure and you will at once realise your own self. Subsequently and immediately, you would also get to know the world and the fact that you and world are one and same will dawn.
You will continue to perceive duality despite non-duality but you will be freed from joy and sorrow for there would remain no cause for it. You will become a dreamer who knows that he is dreaming.