Priti Sandarbha 5.9 Is Union of the Individual Soul with the Supreme Soul the Paramārtha?
5.9 Is Union of the Individual Soul with the Supreme Soul the Paramārtha?
ननु जीवात्मपरमात्मनोरेकत्रस्थितिभावनयात्यन्तसंयोगे प्रादुर्भूते सति तस्यापि सर्वात्मता स्यात्, तदभेदापत्तेः। स च योगो न विनश्वरः, ज्ञानानन्तरसिद्धत्वात्। तस्मात् तयोर्योग एव परमार्थो भवतु। तत्रोक्तमेकेन (वि.पु. २.१४.२७) —
Let us then consider the following: By meditating on the jīva and the Paramātmā being situated in the same place, an absolute union between the two manifests. As a result, the jīva would also become the self of all, due to its having become non-different from the Paramātmā. Such a union (yoga) would be imperishable since it is achieved after attaining knowledge (jñāna). So let the union of these two be taken as the ultimate goal. Jaḍa Bharata responds to this proposal in one verse:
परमात्मात्मनोर्योगः परमार्थ इतीष्यते।
मिथ्यैतदन्यद् द्रव्यं हि नैति तद्द्रव्यतां यतः ॥ इति।
If you think that the union of the ātmā with the Paramātmā is the ultimate goal, then this too is false because certainly one different substance never becomes another one. (VP 2.14.27)
एतत् परमार्थत्वं मिथ्यैवेष्यत इत्यर्थः। हि निश्चितम्। यतो यस्मात् जीवलक्षणमन्यद् द्रव्यं तद्द्रव्यतां परमात्मलक्षणद्रव्यतां न याति, तस्मात् महातेजःप्रविष्टस्वल्पतेजोवदत्यन्तसंयोगतोऽ प्यभेदानुपपत्तेस्तयोर्योगोऽपि न परमार्थ इति भावः। अथवात्र योगशब्देनैकत्वमेवोच्यते। ततश्चैतदेकत्वमिति व्याख्येयम्। शेषं पूर्ववत्।
The meaning is that it is certainly false to call [such a union] the supreme goal. Hi means certainly. Because (yataḥ) one substance, i.e., the living entity, cannot become another different substance, i.e., Paramātmā, therefore absolute unity is not attained just as even complete direct conjunction (atyanta-saṁyoga) of a small light with a big one by putting the former within the latter does not make them absolutely one and so their union cannot be the ultimate goal.
Alternatively, the word yoga in this verse means oneness. In that case it should be explained as their oneness [and not mere union]. The rest of the explanation will be the same as above.
[Śrīdhara Svāmī says that this is not true whether or not one accepts their union as absolutely one or not. [Note that SS uses the word tādātmya.]
jīva-paramātmanor aikyopāsanayā tādātmya-lakṣaṇo yogaḥ paramārtha ity etad api mataṁ mithyaiva | tathā hi, bhinnatve gavāśvayor ivaikyāsambhavaḥ, abhinnatve ca bimba-pratibimbayor iva upādhi-vyudāsa-mātram vinā yoga-śabdārtho nāstīty arthaḥ
Through worship of the jiva and Paramatma in oneness, the connection (yoga) is characterized by tādātmya, this is also false, whether they are different or not different. Oneness of two different entities like a horse and a cow is evidently impossible, and in the case of an object and its reflection the word yoga is not applicable because it the oneness comes about simply the removal of an intermediating false understanding (upādhi) that makes them appear to be different.]
Comment by Babaji Maharaj
Another alternative for the ultimate goal of life, the paramārtha or puruṣārtha, is proposed: the union (yoga) of the self (ātmā) with the Supreme Self (Paramātmā). By such a union the jīva also becomes like the Absolute because such a union would make them non-different. Unlike the previously proposed and rejected paramārthas, such a union would not be perishable, nor would it be a means rather than the end, and furthermore supersedes the separative quality of the goal of yoga as given in the previous verse.
Nevertheless, Jaḍa Bharata rejects such a proposal. He says that such union could not make the jīva completely acquire the nature of the Absolute. A jīva is atomic and can only contact an atomic part of the Absolute. It cannot hold all the power of the Absolute, just as 100 volt bulb cannot carry the 11,000 volts of the power station. So even if there is union, the jīva remains a jīva and can only manifest limited power.