The word 'nondual' is the English translation
of the Sanskrit word, advaita.
Dvaita means two. And in Sanskrit, when you place
the letter 'a' before certain consonants, that negates
the meaning of the word. Thus dvaita means two, or dual,
and advaita means not two, or not dual, hence the
word 'nondual.' Well, that still doesn't explain
what the word nondual actually means.
It means one. But what does that mean? One what?
From my understanding, what the word nondual
means is that despite all appearances to
the contrary, there is actually only one
thing which really and truly exists in and
Even a cursory analysis of all things that
are perceived leads one to the conclusion that
all objects are really made up of smaller and
We take any object, say a chair, and then we analyze
it. What is really there? It's an object we give
a name to, and the name has a meaning, but when we
analyze the object, the chair soon falls apart. It
soon falls apart into smaller and smaller objects.
What is really there?
What is really there, nondual teachings tell us,
is something which cannot be cognized as an object
of sense perception, but yet which itself forms the
basis of all objects, the basis of all sense perceptions,
and is in fact your very own being.
So that's a very big 'jump' to make from a chair
to your very own being as the actual substance
of all that is, and it takes a lot of careful
step by step explanation, teaching, and analysis
before what is being pointed out isn't a jump, but
rather is directly recognized as an obvious fact,
which hitherto went unrecognized, but which was
always true as fact.
So what is nonduality? Nonduality is the
understanding that despite the appearance of
an infinite number of names and forms, and
despite all appearances to the contrary,
and despite the possibility of an endless number of
incarnations for all living things, there is really
only one 'thing' which in and of itself actually
exists, and it is that one thing which
all apparently separate things have for their
The direct recognition of this fact is called
by some 'enlightenment.' It is also referred to
as 'the end of suffering.' It is referred to
in many other ways as well. It is said
by the tradition in which I study that it
is the recognition that my being is whole
and complete, there in reality being nothing
other than my being (which by the way is your
So it is this one 'thing' which all things
'share' as it were. It is this one thing
in which all things have their being.
It is this one thing, which never goes into
or out of being, while the entire universe
constantly changes within it.
So it's a really big topic, and I don't know
if what I've written makes any sense to you
or not, as it was a very brief (and not very
thorough) explanation of the word 'nondual.'
It takes a long time to understand what nonduality is.
At least it took me a long time, and I'm still gaining
clarity in that understanding.