Radhanath Swami explains the different levels of perceptions

Radhanath swami on perception

“So we are perceiving life through the ego, then through the intelligence, then through the mind and then through the five senses. And our particular understanding of reality is according to that perception.” – Radhanath Swami

So what is real? Lord Chaitanya makes it very simple! There is beautiful song in which he is singing:

jīv jāgo, jīv jāgo, gauracānda bole
kota nidrā jāo māyā-piśācīra kole

Wake Up sleeping Souls, Wake Up!
You are sleeping on the lap of Maya!

“Spiritual life is not about interpreting reality according to our different conceptions and conditionings. Real spiritual life is about ‘waking up’ to the internal, underlying substance of truth that is within everything!” – Radhanath Swami

According to the Vedic system, there are five levels of perceptions that we can gain.
1. The first is pratyaksha, which means through direct perception of the mind and senses. But that is very faulty!
2. Another is paroksha, which means indirect knowledge, receiving understanding from higher authorities who know more than us.
3. The third stage is aparoksha, after we receive that knowledge, we apply our senses to those teachings and we gradually get some understanding, some realization.
4. The next step is adhokshaja, which means revealed knowledge, knowledge that is beyond the mind and beyond the senses that is revealed through Guru, sadhu and sastra, the Holy Scriptures or through divine revelation.
5. And the perfection is aprakrita, which means transcendental knowledge and realization of the spiritual essence of life. Sometimes, aprakrita is also called divya pratyaksha, where we can actually perceive the presence of God with our spiritual senses everywhere and in everything, where we can actually perceive and participate in the beautiful pastimes of the Supreme Lord.

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  • Kalpana Kulkarni

    True, we all perceive our lives through our own perception which is not perfect as explained in the five different levels that are available to gain knowledge and understanding of the Supreme Lord.

  • Divya

    Very significant explaination on different level of perception with scrutinize study of Shastra. Thank you very much for sharing

  • Arun Pagare

    Amazing explanation of stages of perfection by HHRNS. On a can find it very helpful in spirituality and in the situation of confusion.
    Hare Krishna.

  • KushangD

    Elegant thought and exquisitely explained by swamiji. The best about him, he doesn’t merely makes thoughts rhetorical, but, makes it empathic to all . thank you so much!

  • Deep

    Beautiful explanation by Radhanath Swami. Understanding this one can safegaurd oneself from arguments based on ones own conction and look out to authorized for true knowledge.

  • NSP

    Thank you for explaining so well different levels of perceiving knowledge!

  • Satya Kama Das

    Thank you for explaining five levels of perceptions.

  • Sumit Sharma

    Great message from HH Radhanath Swami Maharaj!

  • brajswaminidd

    Wonderful explanation of different levels of perceptions. And like to share a link where H.H, Radhanath Swami gives a crisp answer to a question on same lines..http://www.radhanathswamionline.com/insights/radhanath-swami-explains-a-way-to-understand-reality/

  • biswajit

    HH Rahdanath Swami Maharaj Ki Jai

  • sujata

    thank you for sharing this article

  • biswajit

    Great explanation

  • brajswaminidd

    If atleast one can come to 4th level perception we can avoid so many misunderstandings in life.

  • biswajit

    Nicely explained

  • Tallam Sita Ramaiah

    Spiritual knowledge is a great science. Nicely explained by H.H Radhanath Swami Maharaj.

  • Swapnil Gaonkar

    very nicely explained by Radhanath Swami

  • Navin Poojary

    From pratyaksha to divya pratyaksha is a long journey that soul traverses through after many births of austerities on divine path.But it can be made easier by attaching ourselves to humle service of those who are already on divya pratyaksha stage

  • Kalpana Kulkarni

    We can hope to get out of the well of ignorance by the mercy of the great Vaishnavas and devotees.

  • AMBIKA MISHRA

    There appears little difference between the KNOWLEDGE at serial 4 and at serial 5 because both pertain to knowledge beyond mind and intellect.

    • Gopinath Chandra

      Yes, but 5 seems to be at a higher level.

      • Kiran Shetty

        I feel that in Step 5 a self realized soul actually gets spiritual senses to perceive Spiritual reality- just as Krishna gave Arjuna Spiritual eyes to view his universal form during the Message of Gita was delivered.

        • Gopinath Chandra

          I too feel the same. But the understanding will come when we get there….

  • Kiran Shetty

    As a person stuck within the well cannot rescue himself,
    a person in darkness cannot get out of it by himself,
    Similarly a person stuck in the wrong perceptions of life need superior power to help himself out of it.

  • Raju K Mewada

    Wonderful explanation for different level of perceptions by HH Rahdanath Swami Maharaj. In current society we have considered pratyaksh perceptions is highest but it is a wrong. We have already experience the same, what we believe just by seeing or observation is not perfect and that is the reason now a days we are getting new and new conceptions of simple things. We must accept word of sastra, sadhu and self realized soul and try to put in our practice.

  • vishwas phatak

    To my notion an another classification -Charmadrushti-physical form seeing eye,Karmadrushti-eye seeing actions Ichchadrushti sees will or intention Vivekdrushti -discriminates, Bhavadrushti broader inclusive look ,Divyadrushti God sanctioned real vision.Pamho

    • Raju K Mewada

      Thanks..that is very good..

    • Gopinath Chandra

      Interesting! what’s the source?

  • Gopinath Chandra

    Guess I am at level 3…..

    • Piyush Singh

      This is your humility. You seem to be much more elevated :).