There is a big rift between Traditional Advaita Vedanta and what has been called "neo" Advaita. The difference is that so-called "neo" Advaita starts with direct Reality - it starts with the "end", so to speak. And realization is that Reality is the present lack of an individual, therefore THIS is it, already. There is no one to do anything because THIS is already IT. Seeking it only assumes the presence of a seeker and something to find.
Traditional Vedanta starts with the seeker, it starts with the idea of an individual who is seeking, and attempts to, using knowledge and logic, questioning what we take as Reality, and leading to the realization that THIS is it. Of course once it is seen that THIS is it and there is no individual, it's the exact SAME realization.
We'll use two opposing viewpoints, one from each "tradition". The first is Jeff Foster, to some one of the "heads" of the "neo-Advaita" movement. Jeff doesn't proclaim himself to be a "teacher" - he doesn't live in an ashram, he takes the bus, lives a normal life. But he's unmistakably clear.
Jeff says "Nonduality (Advaita) means "Not Two". It points to the Oneness at the Heart of all things.
But it's not a "state" to be reached, not something that some individuals "have" and others don't. It's more like awakening from a dream, and realising, with crystal clarity, that it was only ever a dream. It's like being a newborn baby again. Present. Open. Uncontaminated. Seeing with fresh eyes. Seeing for the first time. It's not an intellectual understanding. It's not contained in words or systems of thought. It's your True Nature. And you don't need to do anything to see your True Nature, because you already are It. Fully.
Still, seeking for It may happen. And for the dream character, all that apparently needs to happen, is for the seeking to end, once and for all. And to the dream character, nonduality teachings may appear to be helpful. Until the seeking ends, that is, and the dream teachings dissolve, and with great Laughter, and great Lightness, the dream character dissolves with them. And then it's all over, and there is only ever THIS, and nobody to know it.
Radical nonduality is radical freedom."
The other viewpoint is from Swami Dayananda Saraswati - a traditional "teacher" of Vedanta, living in an ashram, dressing in robes and beards. Swami Dayananda is one of the clearest expressions of nonduality or Advaita Vedanta, although he would be targeted, by so-called "neo"-advaita, as the epitome of the false and progressive path-based teachings. Yet he is equally clear.
"When are you not self-evident? Tell me—when? It is because you are self-evident that you don't need to become self-evident at any time. All my experiences are because of my self-evidence. Therefore, the Self is already experienced—that's what I say. Self is experienced as the ultimate content of every experience. I say, in fact, that our very experience is the Self.
In all experiences, therefore, what is invariably present is consciousness, and no object is independent of that. And consciousness is not dependent on and has none of the attributes of any particular object. Consciousness is consciousness, and while it is in everything, it transcends everything. That's why I say: this is advaita, this is nondual, this is Brahman, this is limitless; timewise it is limitless, spacewise it is limitless. And therefore it is Brahman, and therefore you are everything already. This is the teaching, and what it means is that I need not wait for any experience because every experience is Brahman, every experience is limitless."
The pointing is exactly the same, although it's dressed up differently, expressed somewhat differently. But the mind takes the messenger and throws out the message. The ultimate message is that THIS is IT. Whatever THIS IS, is it. THIS is Reality. THIS is Brahman, to quote the Swami. THIS is Oneness, to quote Jeff.