BHARAT DARSHAN – THREE GREAT TEACHERS OF INDIA
There are three Indian Schools of Thought that share Vedic Wisdom and its practical applications in daily life. Adi Shankaracharya(c.788 – c.820), Ramanujacharya(c.1017 – c.1137), and Madhvacharya(c.1199 – c.1278) shared these Vedic truths derived from studying the same source materials like Vedas, Upanishads, Gita, and others. Shankara, exponent of ‘Advaita’ or Non-Dualism described The Theory of Maya or Grand Illusion, giving attention to true or real identity of man; an unchanging, immutable, immortal, eternal, and unborn reality that establishes human existence while the human being leads a mortal, transient existence depending on a body that undergoes change in appearance almost every day but for purposes of convenience is divided into three stages like childhood, adulthood, and old age. Shankara claims, in a changing world with natural phenomena, there is an unchanging principle governing all changing phenomena. Shankara describes the truth called “Grand Illusion” and explained the problem of transcending that illusion while man is afraid of his mortal existence and clings to illusion for reality seems to be overwhelming.
Ramanuja, exponent of ‘Visishtadvaita’ or Qualified Non-Dualism, while accepting man’s true identity as described by Shankara, he shows a path to transcend the barrier imposed by grand illusion; the path of devotion to seek union with a personal God. In his analysis, Ramanuja says, God is modified by the orders of Matter and Soul, just like the Soul or Spirit that gets modified because of its association with a living body. For man always exists as a specific Individual with Individuality with no other choice, and for man has no ability to get away from being an Individual with Individuality, God becomes modified into a Personal God. Even if six or more billion human beings choose to worship the same God, that God can only be known or experienced as personal God for man has only subjective experience of his existence while the objective experience of his existence is constantly changing under the external influences of time and space.
Madhva, exponent of ‘Dvaita’ or Dualism describes the five fundamental distinctions required for maintaining any existence. Every living entity has to separate itself from its surrounding matter and environment to perform its own living functions. There is no existence without this separation between animate and animate, and between animate and inanimate. At the same time Madhva maintains that transient and changing things are real. He goes further giving detailed reasoning as to why man has to surrender to the Supreme Being with no concern for finding or exploring some ultimate Truth. Man cannot save himself by discovering truth or reality, rather the truth and reality of man’s conditioned existence and world direct man to seek divine refuge or protection. Neither Coherence Theory of Truth, or Correspondence Theory of Truth formulate fundamental basis for human existence that gives man his subjective and objective experience of his living condition called “BEING.” Man literally has no choice other than surrendering himself and ask for protection, shelter, or take refuge described in Sanskrit as “SARANU.”
The truths or facts shared by man’s scientific discoveries cannot overcome the problem of man’s mortal existence. My essence, my ideas, my thoughts, my feelings, my imagination, and my knowing any kind of truth will be possible if and only if “I” exists as “I AM” and not as “I WAS” an entity that ceased its existence.
Science uses precise instruments to gather data, to make observations, and to verify information using experimental models. We are able to use this scientific method of inquiry as our tools, our instruments, and the scientific observer do not experience reality of Earth’s angular, or linear velocity. As such, man and instruments placed on planet Earth do not have ability to overcome the power of Fundamental Force called Gravitation. Man is able to think, imagine, and explore himself and this world and universe for he has unknowingly submitted himself to an authority that governs his physical existence at any given instant in time and space. This nature of man’s conditioned experience can be experimentally verified by conducting a simple experiment in Physics called ‘Pencil in Water’ optical illusion. The pencil appears bent at the interphase of air and water as man cannot overcome power of fundamental force called ‘LIGHT'(or electromagnetic radiation). While man has ability to manipulate the conditioned existence of pencil, remove it from water and verify truth about that pencil, he has no such ability to remove himself from his conditioned existence. Kindly tell me as to what will you do with truth if you know the truth. It is nice to know the rules of grammar, but it will not save man from predicament of mortal existence and Shankara aptly observed, “Nahi Nahi Rakshati Drukun karane.” Nothing can save man as scientific knowledge confirms that man cannot rule or govern cells of his own body for they are independent and enjoy functional autonomy.
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