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81. (Objection): It was stated before (in 67) that existence was a natural concomitant of every thing and that Akasa was not. Now you say that Akasa is concomitant of air. Do they not contradict ?
82. (Reply): We implied before that space as an attribute of Akasa was not found in air; we now say that the ability to produce sound, which is also the attribute of Akasa is found in air. Where is the contradiction ?
83. (Objection): If you argue that because air is different from the real entity it is unreal, why do you not infer that air, perceived by the senses being different from Maya, is not unreal like Maya ?
84. (Reply): Air is unreal because its nature partakes of the nature of Maya. Unreality is common to Maya, and its effects, because both differ from reality (existence), although Maya, being power, is not subject to perception whereas its effects are.
85. There may be sub-divisions within non-existence. But what is the use of considering them here ?
86. What is real in air is Brahman, Sat; other portions are unreal as in Akasa. Having made a deep impression (in your mind) about the unreality of air (by reason and meditation) give up (the false notion about the reality of) air.
87. In the same way we can think of fire which has a more limited range than air. A similar consideration will point to the relative extension of the other elements which envelop the universe (e.g. water and earth).
88. Fire is formed from a tenth part of air, and in this way each element is one tenth as extensive as the preceding one. This is the traditional theory described in the Puranas.
89. Heat and light are the specific properties of fire in addition to the properties of the entities from which it is derived, namely existence, a pseudo-reality apart from existence and perceptibility to the senses of sound and touch.
90. Endowed with these properties of Brahman, Maya, Akasa and air, respectively, fire has colour as its specific property; apart from existence, all the other properties of fire are unreal. Understand this by discrimination.
91. Since the reality of fire as Brahman and its unreality apart from Brahman has been established, it is easy to understand the unreality of water apart from Brahman since it consists of only one-tenth part of fire.
92. Its existence, its pseudo-reality apart from existence, its perceptibility to the senses of sound, touch and sight are taken from the entities from which it is derived (namely, Brahman, Maya, Akasa, air and fire respectively). Its specific property is perceptibility to the sense of taste.
93. Since the illusory character of water considered apart from existence has thus been established, let us now take the case of earth, which arises from one-tenth part of water.
94. The earth has for its properties existence, a pseudo-reality apart from existence and perceptibility to the senses of sound, touch, sight and taste. Its specific property is perceptibility to the senses of smell. Their difference from Brahman should be understood.
95. The illusory character of earth is realised when it is considered apart from existence. One-tenth part of it forms the cosmos.
96. The cosmos contains the fourteen worlds and all the living beings suited to each world.
97. If we abstract from the cosmos the existence which underlies it, all the worlds and all objects are reduced to a mere illusory appearance. What does it matter even if they still continue to appear ?
98. When a deep impression has been created in the mind about the elements and their derivatives and Maya being of the same category (viz., of non-existence), the understanding of the real entity as non-dual will never be subverted.
99. When the Reality has been comprehended as non-dual and the world of duality has been differentiated, their pragmatic action (however) will continue as before.
100. The followers of Sankhya, Vaisesika, the Buddhist and other schools have established with quite an array of arguments (the real nature of) the multiplicity in the universe. Let them have these. We have no quarrel with them. (In the pragmatic world we too accept them all.)
101. There are philosophers who, holding an opposite view, disregard the real non-dual entity. That does not harm us, who (following the Veda, reason and experience, are convinced of our own unshakable position and therefore) have no regard for their conclusion.
102. When the intellect disregards the notions of duality, it becomes firmly established in the conception of non-duality. The man who is firmly rooted in the conviction of non-duality is called a Jivanmukta (liberated in life).
103. Sri Krishna says in the Gita: ‘This is called having one’s being in Brahman, O Partha. None, attaining to this, becomes deluded. Being established therein, even at the last moment, a man attains to oneness with Brahman’.
104. ‘At the last moment’ means the moment at which the mutual identification of the illusory duality and the one secondless reality is annihilated by differentiating them from each other; nothing else.
105. In common parlance the expression ‘at the last moment’ may mean ‘at the last moment of life’. Even at that time, the illusion that is gone does not return.
106. A realised soul is not affected by delusion and it is the same whether he dies healthy or in illness, sitting in meditation or rolling on the ground, conscious or unconscious.
107. The knowledge of the Veda acquired (during the waking condition) is daily forgotten during dream and deep sleep states, but it returns on the morrow. Similar is the case with the knowledge (of Brahman) – it is never lost.
108. The knowledge of Brahman, based on the evidence of the Vedas, is not destroyed unless proved invalid by some stronger evidence; but in fact there is no stronger evidence than the Vedas.