Advaita Vedanta  

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"The Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita and Brahma Sutras are the central texts of the Advaita Vedanta tradition, providing the truths about the identity of Atman and Brahman and their changeless nature."

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Advaita Vedanta (literally, not-two), originally known as Puruṣavāda, The term Advaita refers to its idea that the soul (true Self, Atman) is the same as the highest metaphysical Reality (Brahman). The followers of this school are known as Advaita Vedantins, or just Advaitins, and they seek spiritual liberation through acquiring vidyā (knowledge) of one's true identity as Atman, and the identity of Atman and Brahman.

Advaita Vedanta traces its roots in the oldest Upanishads. It relies on three textual sources called the Prasthanatrayi. It gives "a unifying interpretation of the whole body of Upanishads", the Brahma Sutras, and the Bhagavad Gita. Advaita Vedanta is the oldest extant sub-school of Vedanta, which is one of the six orthodox (āstika) Hindu philosophies. Although its roots trace back to the 1st millennium BCE, the most prominent exponent of the Advaita Vedanta is considered by the tradition to be 8th century scholar Adi Shankara.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Advaita Vedanta" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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