Vedanta philosophy. Lecture by Swami Abhedananda on does the soul exist after death? - Swami Abhedananda - ebook
Opis

One of the most poetical of the Upanishads, I mean the Katha Upanishad, which has been translated by Sir Edwin Arnold, under the title of “The Secret of Death,” begins with this inquiry: “There is this doubt; when a man dies, some say that he is gone forever, that he does not exist, while others hold that he still lives; which of these is true? “Various answers have been given to this question; metaphysics, philosophy, science and religion have tried to solve this problem. At the same time, attempts have also been made to suppress this question and to prevent inquiry as to whether or not man exists after death. Hundreds of thinkers have brought forward all sorts of arguments to do away with questions bearing upon this momentous subject. From ancient times, there have been atheistic and agnostic thinkers in India who denied the existence of the soul after the death of the body. They are known as Chârvâkas. They believe that the body is the soul, and that the soul does not exist outside of the body, and that when the body dies, the soul is also dead and gone. They believe in nothing that cannot be perceived by the senses. Their motto is: “As long as you live, do not fail to enjoy. Live comfortably and enjoy the pleasures of life. Do not think of the future. Get all that you need and wish; if you have not got money, then beg or borrow it, for when the body is burned into ashes no one will have to be accountable for your deeds.”

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TITLE

VEDANTA PHILOSOPHY

LECTURE BY

SWAMI ABHEDANANDA

ON

Does the Soul Exist after Death?

First digital edition 2017 by Gianluca Ruffini

TABLE OF CONTENTS

THE MOTHERHOOD OF GOD

REINCARNATION

DOES THE SOUL EXIST AFTER DEATH?

THE MOTHERHOOD OF GOD

The lecture by the Swami Abhedananda on “The Motherhood of God” is serious, logical, awakening, and one can hardly help feeling that only use and wont prevent us from recognizing that the phrase, “The Fatherhood of God,” is really assailable. * * * * * Says Swami Abhedananda, “We live and move and have our existence in that Divine Mother.” At present, we are, as a rule, not much beyond the old Israelitish notion of Jehovah; and here we find this enlightened Indian’s teaching especially rational and wholesome. The Hebrew religion gave us the picture of a Jehovah, stern, arbitrary, and exacting as an Eastern autocrat. Says the Swami, “The same Jehovah, when considered as the Father of the universe by Jesus and His followers, did not lose this extra-cosmic nature. Even to-day the majority of the Christians cannot go beyond this idea of an extra-cosmic God.” And that is where we are to-day for the most part. What if the profound Eastern idea of the Motherhood of God, allied to our already fruitful idea of the immanent (instead of transcendent) God, should turn out to be the practical emancipation of the Western mind, delivering it from the anthropomorphic images that cluster about this “extra-cosmic” God, and introducing it to a thought of God which will bring Him absolutely near? * * * * * We have long needed a little more of this “superstition” and sentiment in “this happy English isle.” Let us be hospitable to all who bring out from the treasury “things new and old,” the “pearl of great price.” Especially let us be hospitable to the interesting thinkers who increasingly remind us of the ancient proverb that wisdom conies from the East. Extracts from the leading editorial of “Light,” London, July 8th, 1899.

REINCARNATION (3 lectures).

- I. Reincarnation.

- II. Evolution and Reincarnation.

- III. Which is Scientific, Resurrection or Reincarnation?

“In these discourses the Swami Abhedananda considers the questions of evolution and the resurrection in their bearing upon the ancient teaching of rebirth, the truth, logic and justice of which are rapidly permeating the best thought of the Western world. For the preservation of this doctrine mankind is indebted to the literary storehouses of India, the racial and geographical source of much of the vital knowledge of Occidental peoples. Reincarnation is shown in the present volume to be a universal solvent of life’s mysteries. It answers those questions of children that have staggered the wisest minds who seek to reconcile the law of evolution and the existence of an intelligent and just Creator, with the proposition that man has but a single lifetime in which to develop spiritual self-consciousness. It is commended to every thinker.”- Mind, February, 1900.

“If the slayer think that he has slain, or if the slain think that he is slain, both of them know not that the soul can neither slay nor be slain.”- Katha Upanishad, ii. 19.

DOES THE SOUL EXIST AFTER DEATH?