D: What is the real purpose of sannyasa (renunciation)?

M: Sannyasa is only the renunciation of the 'I' thought, and not the rejection of the external objects. He who has renounced (the "I" thought) thus remains the same whether he is alone or in the midst of the extensive samsara (empirical world). Just as when the mind is concentrated on some object, it does not observe other things even though they may be proximate, so also, although the sage may perform any number of empirical acts, in reality he performs nothing, because he makes the mind rest in the Self without letting the 'I' thought arise. Even as in a dream one appears to fall head downwards, while in reality one is unmoving, so also the ignorant person, i.e., the person for whom the 'I' thought has not ceased, although he remains alone in constant meditation, is in fact one who performs all empirical actions*. Thus the wise ones have said. * Like those who listen to a story with their attention fixed elsewhere, the mind whose residual impressions have worn away does not really function even if it appears to do so. The mind that is not free from residual impressions really functions even if it does not appear to do so; this is like those who while remaining stationary imagine in their dreams that they climb up a hill and fall therefrom.

D: The mind, sense-organs, etc., have the ability to perceive; yet why are they regarded as perceived objects? M:

Drik Drisya

(Knower) (Known object)


3. The sense of sight The eye organ

4. The mind The sense of sight

5. The individual soul The mind

6. Consciousness (the Self) The individual soul

As shown in the above scheme, since we, the consciousness, know all objects, we are said to be drik (knower). The categories ending with pot are the objects seen, since they are what are known. In the table of 'knowledge: ignorance (i.e. knower-known)' given above, among the knowers and objects of knowledge, it is seen that one is knower in relation to another; yet, since that one is object in relation to another, none of those categories is, in reality, the knower. Although we are said to be the 'knower' because we know all, and not the 'known' because we are not known by anything else, we are said to be the 'knower' only in relation to the known objects.

In truth, however, what is called the 'known' is not apart from us. And so we are the Reality that transcends those two (the knower and the known). All the others fall within the knower-known categories.

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