Is the world just an illusion?

Acharya Prashant
2 min readJul 1, 2020

The world is not an illusion. What is then meant by the assertion that — ‘the world is an illusion’? Why does the Seers have to say that, “Jagat is mithya (the world is an illusion)”?

It is because there are a lot of people who do not take (for example) a sofa as merely ‘a sofa’.

The sofa is ten thousand things to you, and those ten thousand things keep changing depending upon your mood, your conditioning, your upbringing.

They don’t stay, they deceive. You think of something as one thing, it is not that ‘thing’. And then there is sorrow, because no one likes to be betrayed.

You look at a man, and you are not merely looking at a ‘man’. Has it ever happened that you looked merely at a ‘man’? Even to call a man, ‘a man’, is to begin a lot of obfuscation and unnecessary extrapolation.

The whole game of language is to generalise. You cannot use language and be very precise. These days people are annoyed when stereotypes are used, but if you look at it sharply, you will find that it is impossible to use language and still not stereotype. No stereotyping, no words.

The very word ‘man’, refers to a stereotype. The very word ‘tree’, refers to a stereotype. Where there are concepts, there is stereotyping.

Ask yourself: “Is it possible to conceptualise and yet not generalise?” And if you generalise, aren’t you preparing the ground for deception?

Yes generalisation helps in the sense that it makes things convenient for us and practical for us. But practicality is not the same as purity. Or is it?

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