Reply To: Dream world bound by Time and Karma -Conceiving The Inconceivable

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Ashish Dalela

The term “real” carries assumptions from Western philosophy about reality. These assumptions don’t apply to Vedic philosophy. The correct terms are “manifest” and “unmanifest”.

There is an elaborate process by which an “unmanifest” becomes “manifest” through various stages. In the book “Time and Consciousness” I have described 6 such stages. These are called existing, thinking, feeling, willing, knowing, and acting. When you think about something, it goes from a state of existing outside your mind, to a state that is manifest in your mind. Then if you like that thought, it comes slightly closer and is seen more clearly. Then if decide that it is true, it comes even closer and you see it even more clearly. Then if you truly understand its nature, it comes even closer and is seen even more clearly. Finally, when you use it with your senses, it comes further closer. So, as the thing is coming closer, it becomes more manifest.

An atheist thinks about the idea of God, and immediately finds it repugnant. Therefore, his thinking stops at the feeling stage, and further proximity is not developed. So, God’s nature is not revealed. This is due to the nature of experience from thinking to feeling to further steps.

Now, what is “real”? It is the “existing” stage. In this stage, it exists as a possibility to be thought, felt, judged, known, and used. But “real” doesn’t mean you know about it. It can exist without being known. Even things that have never been thought before are real and existing. The nature of possibility is as big as the capacity of the mind to think. So, everything that you can potentially think of has a reality. Even false ideas are existent, and they just manifest in our minds.

The universe is described to be covered by many layers that are 10 times larger in radius than the previous layer. Something 10 times larger in radius is 100 times bigger in the area and 1000 times bigger in volume. So, based on this, we can understand that the space of all that can be thought of is 1000 times bigger than the space of things that we can potentially like. The space of things that we can like is 1000 times bigger than the space of things that can be judged to be true. The space of all that is judged to be true is 1000 times bigger than the space of things that can be constructed logically. And the space in which things can be constructed is 1000 times bigger than the space in which they are constructed. This space, which is 10^-21 times smaller than the existent space constitutes a single visible universe and it can be further divided into waking, dreaming, and deep sleep. That deep sleep stage is the unconscious and 2x2x2 = 8 times bigger than the conscious. This called the aloka varsa. Within this is the 8 times smaller loka varsa. Within loka varsa there are distinctions of dreaming and waking. Within waking there is a distinction between hallucination, misperception, illusion. Each of these is many times bigger than the next one. All these things exist, but they are not true. Finally, after eliminating all these things, we come to a knowledge that is true. This truth exists in this universe, but finding it is like locating a needle in a haystack of the size of a galaxy. It is impossible to find that truth on your own. But if we accept God’s guidance, then He leads us to this needle by giving us a devotee.

So, now if you say “I dream this” and is it real? Yes, it is real, because it is possible. But is it true? That depends on whether someone in the spiritual world is smelling the same smell. Only those things that are being experienced in the spiritual world are true. All the other things are false. So, the same smell can exist here and there. But one who knows these two worlds can tell whether the thing is true or false. It is not a generic answer. It is very specific, based on details.

The problem is that people are thinking that what they are seeing with their eyes is the only reality. They don’t know that the reality is many orders of magnitude bigger than all that everyone is seeing right now. This is the Vedic conception of the universe. It is enormously bigger than everything science has imagined so far, and they cannot imagine unless they study the nature of the senses, mind, intellect, ego, moral sense, and deeper realities. At each step, the universe will become many orders of magnitude bigger. So, when we talk about Krishna, we are talking about so much greatness that people cannot imagine. God is great. But how great? Cosmology is meant to tell us how great. Then when our mind is boggled, then we say: I cannot understand this myself, please help me. At that time Krishna will guide the humble seeker. The science of this world is meant to make the arrogant person humble by baffling them.