Q: Is Advaita Vedanta only for philosophers? How can the average person practice Advaita Vedanta in his or her daily life in a way that it is easy to follow and not be drawn other ideologies?
Vishnu: No. I don’t consider myself a philosopher and I’ve studied and “practiced” Advaita Vedanta for over a decade. Don’t take my word for it though. Just go to an Advaita Vedanta satsang and see for yourself. Spoiler alert: It is going to be filled will average, everyday people. Why? Because everyone is looking for truth, not just philosophers.
You practice Advaita Vedanta in your daily life by:
1) Living a life committed to dharma (in this case, dharma means right living).
2) Consistently applying the teachings of Advaita Vedanta to your mind until they help you directly realize your total non-difference from brahman, the non-dual absolute reality. After that, there’s nothing to practice. Sure, you continue to live a life committed to dharma. But once you’ve seen the truth of your own nature, it’s not something you can practice. It’s just what you are.
Advaita Vedanta is not there to convince you to follow it’s teachings. Rather, it says you’re just fine as you are (but you just don’t know it!). If what Advaita Vedanta has to say appeals to you, you won’t need to be convinced to commit to it. Nor will you look for answers in other ideologies (not that Advaita Vedanta is an ideology).
So if what Advaita Vedanta has to say speaks to you on a deep, inner level, then you’ve found the right teaching. If not, start looking for the one that does!
All my best – Vishnu