Shri Datta Swami

Jnana Saraswati – Parabrahma Sutras


168. God's existence alone is known; not His nature

अनूह्यमिति नोह्यं यदस्तित्वमात्रज्ञापकं न स्वरूपम्।१६८।
anūhyamiti nohyaṁ yadastitvamātrajñāpakaṁ na svarūpam|168|

One cannot argue that God is imagined to be unimaginable, because the unimaginable nature only indicates the existence of God; it is not the real inherent characteristic of God.


The unimaginable nature of God is not the inherent characteristic because it changes when God Himself becomes the observer. This means that God is unimaginable for others and is imaginable for Himself. Since the inherent characteristic cannot be altered by the change of observer, the unimaginable nature can no more be the inherent characteristic of God. This was already established in the above sutras. Hence, no inherent characteristic of God is known or experienced. Experience is not different from knowledge. The unimaginable nature acts as an inherent characteristic like the inseparable yellow thread to identify the married lady. The yellow thread is said to be inseparable but is not really inseparable. Therefore, by experiencing or knowing the unimaginable nature of God, you cannot claim that you have known or experienced God. If you claim that you have imagined God as unimaginable, and if you argue that by this way you have imagined God, then, even that becomes futile. The reason is that even if you imagined God as unimaginable, since the unimaginable nature is not the inherent characteristic of God, you have not touched God or God’s inherent characteristic through the experience of unimaginable nature. This means that you have caught only the yellow thread but not the lady. Hence, in no way can you imagine God. By this, the logical way of arguing that God is imagined as unimaginable is also totally rejected and there is no way to imagine God. The final conclusion is that the unimaginable nature gives the existence of God in that medium.

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