K n o w l e d g e f o r l i f e
Atma Vidya आत्मा विद्या (Self-knowledge) are the little known quintessential teaching of the Upanishads and Advaita Vedanta.
Questioning ourselves as human beings, wanting to know the absolute truth, we have always had to go to the upanishads.Throughout history the timeless teachings of Vedanta and in particular Atma Vidya have successfully answered all our questions. Called pramana the means of knowledge, the teachings are “anadhigata abadhita jnana janakam sastram”. not available from any other source and being the truth, once known, are never subject to cancelation.
Since time immemorial the teachings of Atma Vidya have been responsible for uplifting humanity. By curing our ignorance of what it means to be human, Self-knowledge resolves the problem of human suffering.
Traditionally only ever taught by priests in Sanskrit, the survival of the teaching was so important to Sri Adi Shankara 2500 years ago, that the great sage spent his whole life dedicated to its revival. Known as the end of all knowledge, (Vedanta) since Shankara revived the teaching, Atma Vidya became lost again. Shrouded in orthodoxy, today religious taboo forbids priests from sharing Self-knowledge with women or the ‘so-called’ common man. As a result, to find a teacher of Atma Vidya fluent in its methodology even in India is rare. Were it not for the modern revivalists movement breaking with tradition, Atma Vidya and its method of teaching would have all but disappeared. Translating the teachings into English modernists have brought Atma Vidya back to life, making the teaching available to the general public for the very first time.
Knowledge for the i generation
For the wave to even appear separate from ocean, the whole ocean has to come into existence first. For us to appear separate from the creation, the whole Creation has to be brought into existence first!
As much as the little wave in the ocean doesn’t have to learn how to be ocean, already married to ocean, so we don’t have to learn to be ourselves. All thats needed is our true nature needs to be pointed out. This has always been the job of the teacher. Like the little wave in the ocean, overwhelmed by the cyclone thinks its all alone drowning in the ocean. (It doesn’t realise, already being water; part of ocean, it can’t drown!) So getting lost, isolated in our own exclusivity, our ignorance of our true nature is all that separates us from the truth.
Making myself exclusive, thinking my exclusivity saves me, my need for exclusivity keeps drowning me and ignorance is all that stands in my way.
How to deal with the appearance of separation and how to get rid of ignorance is what Self-Knowledge is here to teach us.
Just like the little wave, already perfect, whole and complete in itself needs nothing to complete itself and be ocean, so nothing can make us more our best whole and complete Self than we are already.