James Barton

Forum Replies Created

Viewing 3 posts - 1 through 3 (of 3 total)
  • Author
  • in reply to: The Purusha is Desireless #13232
    James Barton

    Hi Ashish,

    Your books (“Material and Spiritual Natures” plus “Sankhya and Science”) have arrived, looking forward to studying indepth.

    I appreciate that not all that is labeled as Samkhya is the real Samkhya. However on general search the majority of sources have it that Samkhya school has Purusha and Prakriti as uncreated eternals.

    From my understanding of personality I can see that the true nature is both personal and impersonal.

    Think of “fearlessness” for example. Any being who is truly fearless is the same in that regard of anyone else who is also truly fearless. Anyone who loves unconditionally is the same in that regard as anyone else who loves unconditionally.

    So that ideal of personality is universal and in God as in the truly realized beings.

    Differences in personalities are only temporary lacks of particular virtues. There is a divine blueprint of ideal personality. As it is absolutely universal it can be said to also be impersonal in a way.

    I am not saying that humans are going around as omniscients. Most people claiming enlightenment are somewhat deluded. I have tested some people claiming special powers and they have failed.

    Enlightenment is freedom from the ego delusion but that does not make them omniscient. After freedom from physical reincarnation there is likely many other subtle purifications. I still hold though that omniscience is the eventual destiny of all beings.

    As is said by Sri Ramana and other self realized beings: anything gained can again be lost. Enlightenment is only the revealing of the reality which is ever there within. So all wisdom must be within inherently. It is only covered up temporarily.

    Samkhya is famous for having 25 Tattvas: Purusha and Prakriti plus the evolutes of Prakriti.

    Shaivism I think has the 25 plus 11 more making 36. Those 11 they believe to be higher than the Purusha such as various divine levels.

    “Samkhya philosophy lists 25 tattvas while later Shaivite philosophies extend the number to 36”

    So to clarify: Samkhya is said to be earlier and original. The additions up to 36 came later as the Yugas descended and errors may have crept in.

    However some say that the Purushas free from Prakriti are the 26th Tattva which would be a kind of divine unity as I outlined earlier. This is not necessarily labeled as impersonal. It can be seen as the universal personality with infinite eyes /purushas in perfect harmony beyond our human understanding.

    Another point though is that there is also eternal unchanging truth. Eternal truth is not a created thing and cannot be changed even by God.

    Many materialists confuse our man-made mathematical conceptual ‘maps’ with the eternal ‘territory’ of the mathematical facts.

    Some theists wrongly believe that God has created the eternal truths.

    There are an infinite number of eternal mathematical and other transcendental truths. 2+2=4 and it cannot be changed by any god. Are we agreed on this?

    So there can be omniscience which is aware of the infinite unchanging truths and there can be omniscience  which is also aware of every heart etc as you said.

    In mathematics there can be levels of infinity:

    “Infinity is a powerful concept. … There are actually many different sizes or levels of infinity; some infinite sets are vastly larger than other infinite sets. The theory of infinite sets was developed in the late nineteenth century by the brilliant mathematician Georg Cantor.”

    So perhaps there are also different levels of omniscience? Just something to think about.

    in reply to: The Purusha is Desireless #13230
    James Barton

    I appreciate your reply although I still see from a slightly different perspective.

    Your books will add to my collection of books on Samkhya as I am trying to get to the truth whatever it may be. As far as I understand it most Samkhya texts are agreeing that the Purusha is neither created nor creative, it is witness only.

    I have been disagreeing with many Advaita school people in favour of the duality of Samkhya.

    Their philosophy is not making sense in that they say Brahman is unchanging but then creates maya etc. Also if there is Brahman only then it would mean that liberation would be meaningless, everything would be a meaningless cycle as even the Brahman/goal is still forever creating ignorance/maya, desires and suffering.

    According to my study Samkhya is a bit more like Jainism in many ways.

    I have also being debating against the materialists/physicalists. They believe that the consciousness is dependent on and being generated by the physical brain. They confuse the actual consciousness/pure witness with the mental faculties and desires etc. If we look within we can see that the unchanging aspect in our experience is the pure witness.

    Some people say that atheistic Samkhya was original and others say that theistic Samkhya was original. I aim to view both sides objectively.

    From what you have said above it seems that you mixing the Mahat/Buddhi with the Purusha.

    The Purusha is pure witness but the Mahat is Prakriti but the most illumined subtle Prakriti and free from ego.

    That Mahat is the virtues and wise approver, maybe this dissolves or maybe it stays as the highest possible body of the individual Purusha

    As for God, even in so called atheistic Samkhya please consider this: The Purushas free from Prakriti are omniscient. Consider an infinite number of omniscient eternal Purushas. They also transcend space etc. So in a sense they are at One. This goes along with the idea that our true nature is beyond both mere individuality and beyond mere oneness: it transcends both categories.

    Then with the highest beings who still have some Prakriti, they could be classed as gods and creator etc.

    So even in so called atheistic Samkhya I see gods of various classes and also the ‘One’ divine with the infinite eyes/ Purushas.

    Where I question the so called theistic Samkhya is what is the nature of their God? Are they claiming that it creates the Purushas and Prakriti? For me that does not make logical sense as the whole point of the Purusha and Prakriti is that they are not created. They are the 2 fundamental aspects of Reality.

    From that we can see that any ‘God’ which is conscious must be a Purusha and if not pure witness must also have some Prakriti.

    It is not a case of a Purusha and then the physical body. In between the Purusha and the physical body are several subtle bodies.

    in reply to: The Purusha is Desireless #13227
    James Barton

    Thanks Ashish,

    As I understand it in the context of Samkhya: Purusha is pure unchanging divine witness only. All else including desires, thoughts, energy and physical body etc are Prakriti.

    The idea of Samkhya is to realize the difference between Purusha/pure witness and Prakriti/matter/energy. For example via the Neti Neti technique.

    A desire arises due to a delusion of lack which is itself caused by ignorance/false identification with prakriti.

    Yes, desires maybe gross, intermediate or subtle but our true nature is beyond all such.

    Purusha as “person” means an individual center of consciousness. According to Samkhya there are numerous eternal Purusha. Each being which experiences is an eternal Purusha.

    Purusha as pure witness is unchanging. Only Prakriti is subject to change and vibration. Prakriti has no consciousness at all.

    The genius of Samkhya is to separate Subject and Object where generally we confuse the 2.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by James Barton.
Viewing 3 posts - 1 through 3 (of 3 total)