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The Inner Inquiry
"All this will disappear and lose individuality with the emergence of Jnana, the Highest Wisdom" said the Sage Vasishta to Rama. "Rama!", he advised, "You have to understand how this non-knowledge grew and by what means it can be destroyed."
There is one mystery hidden in this advice. Centuries of enquiry have failed to unravel the secret - wherefrom did the Cosmos originate? How did it emerge? If It had a Personal Cause, the enquiry could have succeeded. The Cosmos or Jagath is not such an object. The questions "How did It emerge?", "Wherefrom did It originate?" are exactly on a par with the question, "How did the 'serpent' appear on the 'rope' and cause the 'terror'?" Only the rope exists there; the serpent was imposed thereon, during dusk, by the defective intellect of the onlooker. That is to say, on account of the illusion created by Reasoning. In other words, ignorance is the basis of the misapprehension.
Brahmam is the 'rope'; Jagath is the 'serpent' superimposed on it by Reason afflicted by illusion. We cognise Brahmam as Jagath; we take one thing as another, so long as this affliction holds sway. Therefore, it is best to conclude that the Jagath is an object which originated in our own Buddhi (Intellect) and emerged out of the same faulty faculty. An object born of such a delusion and confirmed by only an infirm intellect can never be true. When the delusion goes, when the infirmity disappears, the Jagath so caused also disappears.