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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Advaita Vedanta by Eliot Deutsch. Advaita Vedanta is the most important philosophical system in India.

It involves a discipline of spiritual experience as well as a technical philosophy, and since the time of Samkara in the ninth century some of the greatest intellects in India have contributed to its development. In his reconstruction of Advaita Vedanta, Eliot Deutsch has lifted the system out of its histo Advaita Vedanta is the most important philosophical system in India. He has sought to formulate systematically one's understanding of what is of universal philosophical interest in Vedantic thought.

Professor Deutsch's work covers the basic metaphysical, epistemological, and ethical ideas of Vedanta. Students and scholars of Western as well as of Indian philosophy will be interested in the lucid, organized manner in which the material is presented and in the fresh interpretations given.

The book is written in a critical rather than simply pious spirit and should thus also be of interest to anyone interested in deepening his or her appreciation and understanding of the richness of Indian thought.

Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published December 1st by University of Hawaii Press first published More Details Original Title. Other Editions 1. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Advaita Vedanta , please sign up. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 4.

Rating details. Sort order. Sep 07, Rama rated it it was amazing Shelves: hindu-philosophy , consciousness , hinduism , philosophy , physical-reality , spirituality. The substance of this system of thought is that the physical reality that describes the universe with living entities, matter and energy, and cosmic structures is due to One Supreme Consciousness pervading the universe. It is referred to as Brahman. Brahman has no attributes, but it is an entity that encompasses omniscience infinite knowledge , omnipotence unlimited power , omnipresence present everywhere , Omni benevolence perfect goodness , immutable, divine simplicity, and eternal existence.

Brahman exists in spaceless and timeless dimension in an unchanging reality amidst and beyond the realm of the universe. These qualities are personal and impersonal; variously referred to as God or the Supreme Lord in Hinduism.

The Pure Consciousness, the Brahman transcend all possible laws of physics, all dimensions and all physical realities in an infinite space that may have multiverse. That is the True Reality. There is no room for dualistic thought, such as God and living-beings having separate existence; or God and material world are two different things.

There is no separate subject and object; there is no me and Almighty God; there is no you and Almighty God. There is Oneness. Brahman as a transcendental entity in a spiritual domain that defies all humanly description or characterization.

Eliot Deutsch is an eminent scholar of Vedanta and spent his lifetime teaching and researching in the field of Hindu Philosophy. Advaita is widely regarded as the pinnacle of wisdom among Hindu philosophers in post-Vedic India.

It is a metaphysical system that explains physical reality in the most profound form. It is an unflinching theory and a focused system of thought that has intellectual depth and great insight that comes close to the reality reasoned within the laws of quantum physics. Erwin Schrodinger, the father of wave mechanics was a life-long Vedantin Advaitin according to his biographer, Walter J. Schrodinger showed the wave-particle duality of matter at its most fundamental existence.

All quantum states theoretically calculated for a particle exist in spacetime until an experimental observation collapses them into one particular state.

Before measurements, the particle wave can exists at virtually anywhere in the universe; it could be at two places at the same time.

This wholesomeness of quantum reality and existence is inherent in nature. A brief summary of this book is as follows: The world has no separate existence apart from Brahman. Although the individual self seems different from Brahman, like space inside a milk bottle that looks different from space outside if it. The space inside the bottle takes the shape of the bottle, but it is still part of the larger space. Plurality is experienced because of error in judgments mithya and ignorance avidya.

Advaita Vedanta interpret the relationship between Brahman and the world in terms of satkaryavada, the theory that effect pre-exists in the cause. The vivartavada theory observes that effect is only an apparent manifestation of its cause. Both lead to same conclusion and are rooted in the same action, the cause which is a concept of Maya, avidya ignorance and adhyasa.

When we transform the impersonal Brahman being into personal being. We bring an association of the impersonal with Maya. Maya is the ontic-noetic state where limitations upadhis are imposed upon reality.

Attachments, aversions, fears, dreams, and semi-dreams are all smeared with illusory power of Maya. All memories, cognitions, percepts, and logics are grounded in mirage, apparition and deceptive appearance. Maya appears whenever we fail to realize the oneness of the Brahman.

Advaita establishes the Oneness of Reality and this self-knowledge enables the knower to overcome all pain, misery, ignorance, and bondage. The self and the knowledge of the whole leads to freedom and wisdom. Self is described in four states of consciousness and there is no discontinuity of consciousness. The four states misidentifies the self but they are changes in the power of awareness.

The waking and dream states which can be brought together into a single category corresponding to gross and subtle bodies Virat and Hiranyagarbha. The state of deep sleep corresponds to saguna Brahman Brahman with attributes or the divine Isvara and transcendental consciousness.

Hence in the waking — dream state, the self is caught with objects, internal and external and loses sights of its own true nature as pure subject. In deep sleep, consciousness and the self is free from objects but not yet transcended to the fourth state of turiya.

In the fourth state the self-transcendence that brings about the awareness of one-self as not different from Reality. To explain the material reality, Advaita advocates that Isvara, the Brahman with attributes become personalized as deity. He is the creative Lord who calls forth worlds, maintains them, and re-absorbs them as lila, as sport or play. There is no purpose in creation.

He is free with unlimited power. Creation is only apparent change and not a change in Brahman in reality. Brahman is unchangeable and immutable. The actual experience of attaining the moksha salvation is through self-knowledge and wisdom. Constant meditation that will help identify with self. Cause and effects are mutually involved; the material elements gross and subtle that constitute physical nature are ontologically the effects of ahmankara I-consciousness and buddhi intelligence ; but their cause is saguna Brahman or consciousness associated with maya.

Saguna Brahman has its own ultimate ground in pure consciousness or nirguna Brahman. De-superimposition apavada , reconnecting the effects back into their causes, the discriminating away of all lower levels of experience sadness, unhappiness, and sufferings is the sword that cuts away false identifications. Such a mind will be instrumental to knowledge of Brahman.

Professor Deutsch has explained Advaita in a very lucid, luminous and intelligible language. View 1 comment.

Probably a good introduction of Advaita Vedanta Indian religious "monist" non-dualist idealist philosophy , but I have nothing to compare against, and I still have to read the last two chapters.. The book requires a more critical attitude - it does critique some ideas, some such as karma and samsara more than others, but somewhat half-heartedly.

One of the problems I had was that there seem to be multiple explanations for the same things - for example, the world is understood as nirguna Brahm Probably a good introduction of Advaita Vedanta Indian religious "monist" non-dualist idealist philosophy , but I have nothing to compare against, and I still have to read the last two chapters.. One of the problems I had was that there seem to be multiple explanations for the same things - for example, the world is understood as nirguna Brahman attribute-less Godhead, the Ultimate Reality experienced through avidya ignorance , but then it is also claimed that saguna Brahman the personal creator God is the efficient cause of the world.

Similarly, jiva the personality or ego shell is understood as a "mirror reflection" or a limitation on the Atman the real Self, which is at basis not different from Brahman , so that you can understand that the human is born without a jiva, and that it is formed as the human starts to experience the world and to divide it into compartments, you, me, yours, mine, now, then, etc The problem might be that in this religious philosophy, there might be different explanations at different levels: the philosophical explanations as against popular theo-mythology, which foreigners like ourselves might be incorporating into one system.

The same problem of multiple explanations would occur if we were to try to incorporate popular Christian thinking with philosophical Christian theology. Another thought that was rattling in my head was about how far one can argue for a worldview without first accepting a number of initial assertions that the worldview takes for granted.


Eliot Deutsch

Short, but serious Serious, but still accessible. Thought-provoking and clear. Advaita Vedanta : A Philosophical Reconstruction. Eliot Deutsch.


Advaita Vedanta: A Philosophical Reconstruction

Eliot Deutsch born January 8, is a philosopher, teacher, and writer. In the summer of Deutsch was a visiting professor at the University of Chicago. He was the editor from to of the international journal Philosophy East and West , Director of the Sixth Eastern Philosophers conference, as well as the past president of the Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy. From through he held position as a Graduate Chair in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Hawaii. From through Professor Deutsch has been a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Hawaii as well as spending some of those years as Chair. He is also a past president of the Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy. Professor Deutsch attended the University of Wisconsin from to obtaining his bachelor's degree there.


Advaita Vedanta : A Philosophical Reconstruction

At the same time he offers the reader a firm foundation for studying his thought with a sound critical sense. In his last lecture, delivered shortly before he died, Paul Tillich recalled his life-long quest for a new theonomy, i. This quest especially identifies the apologetical task of his monumental Systematic Theology which he intended to be a dialogue with and against the individuals of our secularized society. In its paperback edition Dr.

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