[Advaita-l] Perception in lightning

Venkatraghavan S agnimile at gmail.com
Tue May 11 03:50:29 EDT 2021

I was going to suggest this well. The object that is perceived is not the
physical object itself but light / sound emanating from it.

Thus without needing the postulation of the mind to move towards a physical
object elsewhere, one could postulate that the light / sound itself is the
viShaya. Thus all the terms related to viShayAvacChinna chaitanya can be
recast to mean prabhAvacChinna chaitanya / shabdAvacChinna chaitanya etc.

Thus, the viShaya adhiShThAna chaitanya can still be the prakAshaka, there
is difference between paroksha and pratyaksha on account of the prabhA /
shabda making contact with the eyes, there is possible for bhrama because
of ajnAna in the viShaya (light/sound) avacChinna chaitanya.

And as Sri Chandramouli says, this aligns with the anubhava of not
experiencing the exact quantum of distance in the perception of sound and
light even when one knows in general that it is far / near.

That is simpler I feel and requires less items to postulate such as the
mind being able to travel back in time to see distant galaxies etc. While
it may be true for yogis, to say that everyone does that naturally does not
sit well.


On Tue, 11 May 2021, 08:17 H S Chandramouli via Advaita-l, <
advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org> wrote:

> Namaste.
> The following could perhaps form the basis for a resolution of the issue.
> What is cognized through vision is the rUpa (color) of the Vishaya. It
> could be considered as the light enveloping the object or emanating from it
> (in the case of lightning for example) as the case may be. While ‘being
>  distant’ is also perceived in the cognition, the actual location is not
> when the distance is large. Same with shabda or sound. While the sound is
> cognized as well as it being ‘distant’, exact distance is not involved in
> the cognition.
> We can now consider ‘where’  the cognition takes place when all the three
> involved in the cognition; namely antahkarana vritti,rUpa or light
> enveloping/emnating from the object, and shabda or sound emanating from the
> object;  all three are in motion, and the distances between the objects and
> the experience are large.The location where visual cognition takes place
> can be considered as the location where the rUpa or light enveloping the
> object or emanating from it is coincident with the antahkarana vritti
> issuing forth through the eyes. Similarly for the cognition of sound. These
> locations need not be the same as their origin. When distances involved are
> negligible compared to their speeds, location of cognition will be
> practically the same as the object. When distances are large, they could be
> quite different.
> This explains the reason for cognition taking place at different times in
> case of lightning and thunder for example. This would also cover anomalies
> in respect of cognition of very distant stars/planets etc.
> Regards
> Chandramouli
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