Just as there have been misconceptions about the role played by the personal ego and the physical ego in the life of mankind--misconceptions which have arisen by holding on to ideas which are out of their time and place--so the question must be asked, did these egos come, as the Orient mostly believed, by a process which launched them on a path where, as the poet Sir Edwin Arnold has beautifully put it, "The dew-drop slips into the shining sea" where the ego is utterly annihilated, where the personal self is completely dissolved in a sort of mass-consciousness, where all that it has gained from experience, all that it has learned from intelligence, is to be dissolved and thrown away as futile and useless although ages upon ages have been taken for the process? Or will there unfold a higher type of individuality, one that is free because it has earned its freedom; free to exist in harmony with the universal harmony, with the Universal Mind. If nonduality, the goal of Advaita, is to be the end of it all, the vast work of time and space seems to have been in vain, a ghastly repetition of what was not worthwhile. Or is there another explanation which philosophy offers? The answer is: there is.
-- Notebooks Category 26: World-Idea > Chapter 4: True Idea of Man > # 260