The New Monism, Cont'd
Is the mind-at-large "real and benevolent?"
As to whether it's real, the arguments proffered by Bernardo K focus largely on the supposed circularity of the arguments in favor of materialism and on an "Occam's Razor" argument in favor of his monism -- if we accept that everything is part of a transcendent and transpersonal consciousness, there is no need to posit a whole second, material world. "Parsimony" therefore argues in favor.
My own view, having scrubbed Bernardo's passionately-stated case, is that he may be right, but his own arguments for monism are as circular as the arguments for materialism! They assume the result and then defend monism on the grounds that it explains everything.
As to whether it is benevolent, yes it is benevolent in the same way that the Near Death Experience is benevolent. But the "happy ending" entails a dissolution into the Godhead, so everything that makes you "you" goes poof when you die. Beats the alternatives I guess.