Page 1 of 4
That a person, who is acting exactly like ourselves in this very world and with whom we ourselves have most intimate relations, should have to be considered as being altogether different in his outlook and behaviour from ourselves, is difficult to understand or to admit. All that we may be prepared to allow is that he is different from us in the same way as any two persons are different from one another. The esoteric explanation is not of much use either in understanding or in dealing with any person who is also apparently found to belong to this world in the ordinary sense. If a person calling himself or allowing himself to be called a Vaishnava have to be allotted a privileged position, that does not accord with the requirements of our common sense, simply on the basis of such esoteric explanations, there would presently be no necessity for the exercise of common sense at all in any affair of life.
These are the two poles of the empiric attitude. It expects either magic or wholesale surrender to the so-called common sense. It professes the latter, as being the more workable of the two. What change, if any, it accordingly asks, is proposed to be effected in its attitude by the transcendentalists?
The chief historical proponent of such "I am God"ism philosophy was Sripad Shankaracharya. Shankaracharya lived and preached throughout India in the eighth century. The preaching of Shankaracharya and his followers was so strong that, practically speaking, it drove Buddhism out of India. Today, throughout India and the world, Shankaracharya's teachings (or slight variations of them) are still having a tremendous influence on people.
In Calcutta, India, for example, we can see the ridiculous sight of a starving, sore-infested man meditating on the side of the road: "I am God. I am God." In America and Europe, you'll find many so-called yogis and gurus who are directly or indirectly in Shankaracharya's line of "I am God" ism teachers.
~Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda Paramahamsa (Chris Butler)
Sree Gaursundar goes to East Bengal to earn wealth by teaching the people. This is quite intelligible and natural from the common sense point of view. After His return from there He finds that His wife had had a sudden and untimely end. But He is not upset by the information and calmly consoles His stricken mother. This is also quite sensible and nothing extraordinary. It is ordinarily done under similar circumstances by many other persons whose doings are allowed to pass unnoticed, by the ordinary rules of common sense. If there be an esoteric meaning behind all this, which was denied by many of His contemporaries at the time of their occurrence, what difference will it make in our conduct if we refuse to take any notice of the same? . We would behave in the same, or sometimes may be in a better way in similar circumstance by the guidance of our common sense without troubling about any supposed spiritual implication.