Neo-Advaita vs Traditional Advaita – what is the difference?

Q. What is the difference between neo-advaita (or ‘radical non-duality’) and traditional advaita. Or are they just pointing to the same thing in different ways?

Tom: There is an essential difference.

This essential difference is one of SADHANA, or spiritual practice, and SUFFERING.

Neo-Advaita states there is no separate person or jiva that could engage in any sadhana, and that any sadhana perpetuates the illusion of duality. Neo-Advaita also does not claim to end suffering.

(Traditional) Advaita emphasises the importance of sadhana as being absolutely necessary (for most) in order to realise the Self and go beyond and END all suffering and duality.

5 thoughts on “Neo-Advaita vs Traditional Advaita – what is the difference?

      1. Thanks Tom.
        and I got your answer too.
        I also did read the section “Obstacles to Nirvikalpa samadhi’ with keen interest.
        It was very important., & would certainly be helpful in avoiding any self-deception.


  1. My first encounter with Non Duality was with Neo Advaita. I found it very inspiring but after some time found it frustrating and, for me, a dead end. I’ve come around to thinking that Neo Advaita is either for the very immature seeker or the very mature, ripe seeker. For the rest of us there is the Middle Way or the Direct Path.


  2. It seems, there is no difference if we can see from other perspective which is quoted by many Advaitins; Neo-Adviata also proposes 2 step procedure to realize the truth; first one is Neti Neti… & second step is ‘Oneness’. But for the sake of modern generations, as they are very curious to intellectually know what is the ‘Truth’ or what is the ‘Sadhana’ etc. Neo Advaita says that actually there is no Jiva & Sadhana. Thank you, Ravi,


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