Non-duality and Mysticism

The main doctrines of the non-dual philosophy may be described as mystical, not in the sense of being mysterious or magical, but in their firm focusing on what is beyond the realm of appearances and which transcends the subject-object dualism of everyday experience. What are the chief doctrines that we are concerned with?

1. Reality is one.

2. Reality is indescribable. No epithet, attributed to it or predicated of it, is adequate to characterise it.

3. The real essence of the human Self is identical with Reality. Reality is to be found either by looking without or by looking within. In either case, Reality is the same.

4. It is vitally important for a life of real satisfaction and happiness to gain an intuitive knowledge of our identity with this absolute Reality, which can only be described as beyond unity and duality.

5. The way to achieve that Reality, which is identical with our own real Self and the imperishable essence of the universe, is by an effort which is primarily moral and disciplinary, not theoretical.

It can be readily seen that mysticism is rooted in a quest to discover the real, and to identify with the whole, and not with some part or section of a greater whole.

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This article is from the Summer 2022 issue of Self-Knowledge Journal.