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Hari-kirtana das · 1 Year ago

In the course of discussing the concept of formlessness and form in connection with how different schools of yoga philosophy understand the ultimate reality, a colleague asked me why the Absolute Truth had to be personified: why do we assign a form to something that is ultimately formless? I rejected the premise of her question, namely, that form is something we assign, and argued instead that person-ness, which includes the features of form, qualities, and relationships - is an inherent property of transcendence. I presented my reasoning as follows, based on references to various ancient yoga wisdom texts:

By definition, the Absolute Truth is perfect and complete. All emanations from the Absolute Truth – such as us, our bodies, the earth, the universe – have this same attribute of self-contained completeness and yet remain parts of a greater whole and ultimately part of the sum total of reality. (Isa Upanisad, invocation). The Complete Whole or Absolute Reality must contain everything both within and beyond our experience. Therefore, the quality of person-ness must also be present in the Absolute Reality. Without it, the Absolute would be incomplete.

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Ray Baxter · 1 Year ago

“By definition, the Absolute Truth is perfect and complete. ” If that is your definition, it should be obvious that Absolute Truth cannot yet exist, and will not exist until such time as everything is complete.

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Hari-kirtana das: Everything is, always has been, and always will be complete, Mr. Baxter. We may not be aware of the completeness of the Absolute Truth or Absolute Reality but that is testimony to the limitations of our conditioned experience, not the absence of completeness. The Absolute Truth is not subject to either existence or non-existence; if you are talking about something that may or may not exist then you are talking about a relative truth, not the Absolute Truth. It is not my definition; it is the definition of the Isa Upanisad. I cite it because I accept it as authoritative, rather than speculative, knowledge. Thanks for your comment.