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Meister Eckhart, Non-Dualism, Advaita

Discussion in 'Whosoever Will, May Come - Liberal' started by Ishraqiyun, Jun 20, 2011.

  1. Ishraqiyun

    Ishraqiyun Fanning the Divine Spark

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    I was re-reading a few of my books by and about Meister Eckhart after having done some study into Advaita Vedanta. I knew there were similarities between the two but the level of similarity was shocking when I went through Eckhart again.

    There is no evidence that Meister Eckhart new anything about Vedanta or Indian philosophy in general. His worldview was shaped primarily by the Bible and a number of Church fathers especially Augustine and Dionysus (who was himself "accused" of being a monist or pantheist). Yet his Sermons are so similar to traditional Indian teaching that if at the time of their writing they were translated into an Indian dialect and the words "Godhead" given the most appropriate translation as Brahman and God translated as Ishavara the people there would probably assume that it was a perfectly traditional exposition of Vedanta! Among medieval Christians he seems to give the most explicit teaching of no duality.

    This leads me to think that non-dualism is a legitimate understanding within the Christian tradition and isn't simply a case of borrowing. I believe that Paul himself may have taught a form of non-dualism that was passed on to Theudas who in turn passed it down to the famous gnostic teacher Valentinus as well. A teaching he passed on only to the mature (or initiates) those who were ready for solid food. So it may have been part of the Christian faith from the get go.


    Anyone else have an opinon on the subject?
     
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  2. meliagaunt

    meliagaunt Newbie Supporter

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    Just out of interest, which 'Dionysus' are you referring to? Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite, or another?
     
  3. RisingSpirit

    RisingSpirit :-)

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    What is " no duality"?
     
  4. Ishraqiyun

    Ishraqiyun Fanning the Divine Spark

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    Him. I should have been more specific.
     
  5. Ishraqiyun

    Ishraqiyun Fanning the Divine Spark

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    It was supposed to be Non- duality but I forgot the n lol. It implies that God and creation are not two. The experience of absolute dualism is a misunderstanding or illusion.

    I use this analgy for it. Suppose you had a dream and in that dream you were looking at a chair. The dream chair is actually non-dual with you. It's made up of your mind stuff so to speak. Creation is like the dream of God. It might be misleading to say that the chair IS you because that might imply that it's the totality of you or that it was even the source of the dream which wouldn't be right. At the same time it's not other than you either.
     
  6. Anderso

    Anderso New Member

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    huh?
     
  7. Ishraqiyun

    Ishraqiyun Fanning the Divine Spark

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    non-duality = reality is not two (or three, etc..).
     
  8. Ishraqiyun

    Ishraqiyun Fanning the Divine Spark

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  9. Sonny1954

    Sonny1954 Newbie

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    I am also reading Meister Eckhart at the moment and find him very interesting. I have also read a number of books on Indian philosophy (Hinduism). Most Hindus consider the Abrahamic Religions dualistic: That God has a (nearly equal) and opposite force: the Devil. Hindus, on the other hand believe that ultimately only God and the soul are real. There is no "evil incarnate" like Satan or the Devil. They see evil as the result of humanity's spiritual ignorance.

    It's a very interesting and very spiritual approach to God and to life.
     
  10. Ishraqiyun

    Ishraqiyun Fanning the Divine Spark

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    That's true for some of the practitioners of the Abrahamic faith and not others though. Often there is an irreconcilable dualism of God and creation as well. Many of the Sufis Muslims and Kabbalists don't support such a strict dualism though. Lots them are as non-dual as the Advaita Vedantists. In more mainstream or catholic Christianity there is of course Meister Eckhart, Pseudo Dionysisus, Stephen bar Sudaili, and Johhanes Scotus Eriugena but they are not as common as in some of the other traditions. Before the destruction of the Christian gnostics it used to be a lot more common because many of them were non-dualist like Valentinus and Bassilides. Most of the Christian non-dualists seem to be influenced by Plotinus and Neo-platonic philosophy.
     
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