Freedom or liberation (moksha)

Moksha is jnana (wisdom). ‘One who knows Brahman (reality itself) becomes Brahman’ (Mundaka Upanishad 3.2.9).

The following is excerpted from ‘The Celibacy project’ – 2010

NDM: Are you saying that post moksha, there is no more free will, or a sense of free volition, to overcome these inclinations?

Alberto Martin: I said [“there are things which we are not able to avoid doing, or, let’s say, are being inclined to do”] ‘being inclined to do’, not ‘determined to do’. There is bindingness, there is inclination (samskara or vasana), and there is freedom. In a way, everything is bound to happen – there is no free will; individual destinies (life stories) are what they are and were destined to be; this is the play of life, of samsara, where each person (‘persona’=mask) has a role to play, and one can either resist it or accept it willingly, knowing that it is a role. That is because samsara is also nirvana. If I know that I am not the role, but the witness behind the mask, then I, who am witness-consciousness, am free. Witness-consciousness is not different from pure consciousness; in fact they are the same, as taught by Advaita Vedanta. The tendencies (vasanas) are there, but under the light of consciousness they become inert. This understanding is called paramarthika in Advaita; the first one, which gives some reality to the vasanas, is called vyavaharika, which is empirical or conventional.

‘Man is born free, but everywhere he is in chains’, said, or wrote, Jean-Jacques Rousseau – “out of control”, as you say. How can it be so except that (unlike with Rousseau’s meaning and intention) ‘he’ sees himself as occupying a restricted space, the tiny space of the ego? Ignorantly, but willingly – and this is the tragedy – he has not seen his true dimension or stature, and as a result his perspective has become extremely narrow. The controlling factor (‘controlling’ in a positive, not a negative sense) is not other than the light of consciousness which, inexplicably, has been obscured since birth by a kind of veil. This veil is (congenital) ignorance. The gods have played a bad trick on men (was it because Prometheus’ act – stealing the ‘fire’ from them?). Fallen man’s will power, unless it is illumined by reason=intelligence=light of consciousness, amounts to nothing.


About amartingarcia

General surgeon (retired). Studied Western philosophy at U of Toronto. Afterwards interest turned to advaita vedanta and non-duality for past 20 yrs, plus a long interlude in Sufism coinciding with that period. Now contributing in ’Advaita Vision’ with regular posts and discussions.
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