Many roads lead to the Divine, these leave us sometimes with the paradox of choice. The more choices we have, the unhappier we are, for we do not know which will eventually be the right one.
The Bhagwad Gita emphasises “three ways” of unifying with the highest potential : bhakti, karma and jnana marga. The first is the” path of love”, of devotion towards God — the emotional, easier way. The second, one of quintessential themes of the Gita, is the “path of acting”. Albert Schweitzer describes it as the “external accomplishment of action with internal world renunciation”. Although this is an inspiring path as well, the focus should be on the jnana marga. It is the theoretical approach, the “path of wisdom”, a chariot of knowledge that is not misled by our senses.
This kind of knowledge is not to be mistaken for scientific knowledge, although they are not entirely separate. Scientific knowledge prepares us for higher wisdom. It is a partial truth, which can point towards the Supreme Truth. That is a revelation, for that is what most of us do : read, write, educate ourselves and accumulate knowledge. But, do we also move towards wisdom ?
Initially, knowledge, enlightenment of the other kind, makes one doubt supernatural., non-empirical phenomena. However, there is a point, where you start believing again. ——- It is a contradictory, never-ending detour : by knowing you know that true knowledge is never to be known. Why then bother at all and attempt to know ? Karl Jaspers is able to answer this question for us. He believed that philosophy was undergoing a crisis, being superfluous, as it was assimilating itself increasingly to modern science. For him, real philosophical thought ought to go beyond this. This “philosophical belief” is supposed to “transcend” us to the “philosophia perennis”, the Santana Dharma, by leaving the sphere of object-subject duality.
Jaspers did not say that we are able to become permanently one with the Eternal Truth, for knowledge is always subject to duality —— the “thinker” and “that which is being thought”. In order to reach the higher, the world equips us with “picklocks” which are simultaneously also our locks.
It is as paradoxical as everything else. Yet, only the paradox can, as Jaspers writes, encompass everything. Only that way “subject” and “object”, “being” and “non-being” are unified.
For Jaspers, there were those glimpses of light, those moments where we transcend. If the object disappears one cannot seize the actual being, but one can become fulfilled with it. There is a metaphysical step here. One does not know any longer ——- knower and known become one. That way, Jaspers and the Gita had a lot of parallels.
As Socrates once said, “I know that I know nothing” And, don’t forget : NOTHING IS EVERYTHING.
——— Krisha Kops.