Dualism and Oneness in Hinduism and Modern New Age Esotericism

By Björn Kurt, June 21, 2013

When I first read the text to the illusion of love and light, the Hindu text of the Bhagavad Gitaimmediately came to my mind. The Bhagavad Gita is one of the central texts of the Hinduistic religion. The context is this: 5000 years ago in India; After repeated attempts to obtain an honourable peace, the Pandavas realise that there is no option but to go to war with the Kauravas. The latter were their kin, but they had usurped the Pandavas’ kingdom through chicanery. For their part, the Pandavas foolishly agreed to a high-stakes game of dice in which they lost everything.

However, when the armies assemble for combat,Arjuna loses his nerve on finding that he will have to battle and kill kith and kin and many of his teachers and elders. He is about to abandon the fight when Krishna intervenes. The Gita’s message on war is given in this context – and is not a general exhortation to wage war on your neighbours. Krishna’s advice is simple: when you have decided on war after all options for peace ended, you have a duty to fight. That is your dharma (is the Law that “upholds, supports or maintains the regulatory order of the universe” = Universal Law). Krishna does not say that war is the first option, but that it is important in a certain context. So to speak, it is OK to slay a neighbour if he is threatening your life and you will have to get up and stand your ground.

No one can enter a war lightly. Arjuna’s doubts were legitimate, but the doubts were the result of allowing emotion to cloud clear thinking. Genuine pacifism can come only from strength and a willingness to fight for what is right. As Gandhi stressed, non-violence is the weapon not of the coward, but the truly brave.

The problem with romantic pacifism is that it ignores a fundamental paradox: the only way to ensure peace is to be ready for war. Seeking peace without having a deterrent is like sending an open invitation to plunderers and marauders to come and destroy us.

This view of the world is somehow dualistic because it recognizes the playfield of material world to be dualistic.

Now comes another paradox as there is a term called A-dvaita (Non-Dualism). It does not mean Oneness, but Non-Dualism. Hindus worship God as being One. Hindus worship God as One Reality, One Consciousness.

Behind the diversity of existence, there is Unity; behind individual souls, there is the Self. All beings are unified in that One Self

The ancient teachers (the Rishis and Gurus) taught that the One Reality and Consciousness is beyond number, gender and definitions. They taught that this reality is seen in the cave of one’s heart, and they described it as Sat, Chit, Ananda*. Your own inner being, then, is an authentic path to enlightenment. (*existence, consciousness, joy)

A fundamental Hindu principle is one of Unity of all created things. Behind diversity, there is unity. Behind individual souls, there is the Self, one with the Divine.

Not only human life, but all created life, including animal life is a unity. We spring from one source. Differences and divisions are unreal. The belief that we originate from one common source has ethical implications: it leads to a kinder and a gentler world.

Back in the eighties when the thirst for peace and the end of the Cold War opened the borders in the former communist countries a big shift economically and sociologically happened. Neo-Liberal thinking conquered the new markets and the world seemed to be riddled of Antagonism. And as Scipio warned the Roman Emperor after the defeat of Karthago, that now a really dangerous time is starting, since there is no one left to fear and to keep an eye on.

Thousands of seekers of truth left the European shores, where Christianity did not offer an option or meditation routine to deepen the awareness or to go deeper into the inner realms as Jahn’s message told us. The most obvious option was to visit the cradle of the spirituality, which is commonly known as India, where Hinduism and Buddhism were the more attractive options to promise the exploration of our inner worlds.

Buddhism teaches us the right way to conduct ourselves to liberate ourselves from suffering. But when an inward focus leads us to ignore outward threats — and the conclusion that we ought to do nothing about aggression — destruction is the only result.

In Hinduism, the term of Advaita the Oneness of the divine is true in the absolute sense, but it should not be confused with the fact that we are living in a material world subjected to duality. Thus acting as if the realm of peace is already achieved and not to see and to act to solve the problems is one issue. The next problem of lightworkers is the general idea of spreading ideas or be a missionary. Everyone despises the missionary work of “Jehovas Witnesses” and like-minded sects. And no lightworker wants to intrude with his knowledge in a missionary way into other peoples’ life. So the common idea is: If you want to change the world, change yourself first. Because this is the only field which is subject to full control. So by inverting the argument you could also say that most people who are involved in political movements as Greenpeace or Amnesty International have an inner urge or a psychological background, which is unresolved and they project their unresolved issues in the outer world and volunteer in political work, instead of dealing with their inner issues.

The almost monastic renunciation to the world is a deep failure of the seekers process. Once the spiritual awakening by a deep experience, your inner work should lead you to the awareness that your own Self is the inner guide of your behavior. At the same time your inner sense of discernment is being sharpened, so you may decide if something serves the divine or helps the dark side. This faculty of discernment is the most crucial tool that you may have because its interpretation is beyond your own reason and equally beyond your own feelings. It is basically the connection to your higher Self, the Atman, the soul consciousness and therefore anchored in the higher levels of being. Once we can access that kind of information, we are awakened humans and may state from the depth of our hearts what is wrong and what is right.

And exactly this quality of being was lacking in most of the lightworkers. The setting and the framework of a lifestyle was basically allowing such experience, but the most important thing – the connection to the Higher Self and therefore the solid base for a discernment in the daily life is in most cases not possible. What you get is people are at first growing, but as soon as they get some headwind because they stick their neck out of the crowd, they feel that it is getting uncomfortable. There the warrior of light will have to confront the dark side and pull his sword of light and destroy the enemy. Once you have established on this new level of light, you have the means to protect yourself and you are also well protected from the heavenly side if you did ask for help. If you do not have that fearless behavior, you will rather duck and try to get along with the daily chores well under the radar of the dark side. Especially if you are a solitary person and cannot profit from the support of a spiritual community. This is what most lightworkers do. They all strive for world peace and live a daily life in harmony, but that alone does not get you very far.

The question that remains is how to get the lightworkers to become light warriors again and not just people who enjoy the bliss of a spiritual sunbath like some tourists.

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