Chapter 5: Right-Knowledge
Right-knowledge has three sources: direct-cognition,
ingerence and the words of the awakened ones,
Wrong-knowledge is a false conception not
corresponding to the thing as it is.
An image conjured up by words without any
substance behind it is vikalpa, imagination.
The modification of the mind which is based on
the absence of any content in it, is sleep.
Memory is the calling up of past experiences.
The first sutra:
Right-knowledge has three sources: direct cognition, inference and the words of the awakened ones.
Pratyaksha, direct cognition, is the first source of right-knowledge. Direct cognition means a face-to-face encounter without any mediator, without any medium, without any agent. When you know something directly, the knower faces the known immediately. There is no one to relate, no bridge. Then it is right-knowledge. But then many problems arise.
Ordinarily, pratyaksha, direct cognition, has been translated, interpreted, commented on, in a very wrong way. The very word pratyaksha means before the eyes, in front of the eyes. But eyes themselves are a mediation, the knower is hidden behind. Eyes are the medium. You are hearing me but this is not direct, this is not immediate. You are hearing me through the senses, through the ears. You are seeing me through the eyes.
Your eyes can wrongly report to you, your ears can wrongly report. No one should be believed; no mediator should be believed because you cannot rely on the mediator. If your eyes are ill they will report differently, if your eyes are drugged they will report differently, if your eyes are filled with memory they will report differently.
If you are in love then you see something else; if you are not in love then you can never see that. An ordinary woman can become the most beautiful person in the world if you see through love. When your eyes are filled with love then they report something else. And the same person can appear the ugliest if your eyes are filled with hate. They are not reliable.
You hear through the ears. Ears are just instruments, they can function wrongly; they can hear something which has not been said, they can miss something which was being said. Senses cannot be reliable, senses are just mechanical devices.