Chapter

Differing Points of View

Srinivasa Rao

in Advaita

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780198079811
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081707 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198079811.003.0010
Differing Points of View

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Advaita believes in three differing points of view called the illusory (prātibhāsika), the empirical (vyāvahārika) and the ultimate (pāramārthika) which successively contradict and sublate the preceding one. It is argued in this chapter that the above view may not always be true. If two points of view are really different from one another, they cannot contradict each other. If we look at a table with naked eyes we see it as solid. If we look at the same table through a powerful electron microscope, we see only minute particles in vast empty spaces. But we cannot say that the solidity of the table is sublated or contradicted by the sub-atomic point of view. This point is also illustrated by a thought-experiment involving a terrestrial observer on earth and an extra-terrestrial observer located in outer space.

Keywords: prātibhāsika; vyāvahārika; pāramārthika; thought-experiment; points of view

Chapter.  1934 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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