नित्यानन्दैकरसं सत्यं ब्रह्माद्वितीयमेवाहम् ॥
Nirupamaṁ anādi- tattvaṁ tvam- aham- idam- ada iti kalpanādūram
Nityānanda- eka- rasaṁ satyaṁ brahma- advitīyam- eva- aham
“ I'm indeed Brahman, who's inimitable, reality without a morning, beyond the ideas similar as “ you ” or “ me ” or “ this ” or “ that, ” the substance of eternal bliss, real, and nondual. ”( Vivekacūḍāmaṇi, 493)
The idea is interesting the real me is beyond anything that can be described as “ you ” or “ me ” or “ this ” or “ that. ” What places do these particular and demonstrative pronouns play in my life?
“ You ” is easily whoever is in front of me. “ Me ” is myself, whatever my notion of “ tone ” may be. “ This ” is whatever is fairly near to me than “ that ” which is further down.
All of these — you, me, this, that — are limited realities. Their individualities are affirmed as distinct from and in relation to one another. All of them, also, are dependent on “ me. ” When my “ me ” disappears( as in deep sleep), the “ you, ” “ this ” and “ that ” vanish also. When my “ me ” changes( as in dream), “ you, ” “ this ” and “ that ” change as well. The “ me ” seems to be the mecca of everything. It's the “ me ” that controls everything.
At present, my “ me ” does n’t feel like “ the substance of eternal bliss. ” Occasional bliss? Yes, but eternal bliss? No. My “ me ” does n’t also feel like it's “ without beginning. ” Did n’t it begin when I was born? Is there another “ me ” beyond my present “ me ”? It sure looks like there must be. That “ me beyond me ” is the real me. Because it's real and because it's horizonless, I'm going to subsidize it in order to distinguish it from the Lilliputian me which is what my pride is. The “ Me beyond me ” is the Ātman. The description given in the Vivekacūḍāmaṇi verse refers to the Ātman.
The two terms, Ātman(lit., “ tone ”) and Brahman(lit., “ vast, horizonless ”), can occasionally be confusing. The reality in relation to an existent is called the Ātman. The same reality in relation to no bone
in particular is called Brahman. The two — Ātman and Brahman — obviously are one and the same. The Ātman is unlimited. Being horizonless, the Ātman is one, hence there's nothing and no bone
differently from whom the Ātman is different. My present “ me ” easily does n’t answer this description.
A miracle called superimposition( adhyāsa or adhyāropa) magically hides the real and covers it with an apparitional subcaste( kośa). Which is how the Ātman remains hidden while my present “ me ” layers itself atop the Ātman. More directly, the retired Ātman deludes itself into thinking of the subcaste as its own tone. It's the inner darkness of ignorance that hides the Ātman from itself. We saw how the process works in the former post.
Addressing the deluded “ me ” of the pupil, the schoolteacher says Tat tvam asi, “ You're That ”( Chāndogya Upaniṣad,6.8.7). Meaning, your present “ me ” isn't real. Your real “ me ” is That. “ That ” refers to Brahman, the ultimate reality. Being impersonal, Brahman is beyond gender and hence is stylish appertained to as “ That. ” Using the pronouns “ That ” or “ It ” to relate to Brahman may originally sound odd, because we tend to use these to relate to insensible objects. Brahman isn't an object( it’s the real me!) and clearly not “ insensible. ” Brahman is the veritably source of all life. Brahman is life itself. “ You're That ” is a important tutoring that leads to spiritual illumination — incontinently in the case of the pupil who's ready for it, and gradationally in the case others.
Everything that's grasped by the senses or imagined by the mind is occasionally appertained to as “ this, ” as in this statement from the Chāndogya Upaniṣad(3.14.1)
सर्वं खल्विदं ब्रह्म ।
sarvaṁ khalu idaṁ brahma.
“ All this is indeed Brahman. ”
The meaning is straightforward. All of “ this ” — the world perceived by the senses and the mind is nothing but Brahman. In other words, all of “ this ” is really “ That ” transcendent, bottomless reality beyond the layers created by time( kāla), space( deśa), and reason( nimitta).
Taking this tutoring to heart, the pupil strives to look past all the layers that appear as “ you, ” “ this, ” “ that, ” or “ me. ” Every time the pride, or the concentrated “ me, ” raises its head, the pupil ignores it and affirms the Ātman, the “ Me beyond me. ” Śaṅkarācārya’s “ Nirvāṇa Ṣaṭkam ” is a hymn that describes forcefully the process of affirming the real and rejecting the fantastic . ultimately the fantastic evaporates into dead and the real alone remains.
I'm that real. Nothing additional exists.